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Right in the feelings. Albion definitely has more to go in the world building than mechanics, but somehow I didn’t really find them too penalising.
I think Albion was maybe the first dungeon crawler style RPG that I finished (if not the only one), so it has a lot of nostalgia value for me. I do also remember that I did give up on it the first time I tried it – the game difficulty is really not that well balanced, if you know what to do it is quite easy, if you don’t it’s hell.
However I did find that compared to games like Ishar at least there was something to go on. The items were relatively simple (although it still has way too many useless weapons), the spells have obvious use (I’m still traumatised by Shadows over Riva).
One thing that also really pulled me through the whole story is the graphics, for me the game still looks gorgeous (both in 2d and 3d parts).
Could it be that the cursed bit makes the bonuses inverted? Normally the shadows sword gives you -50 stamina, -30 life and -30 lock picking. (https://albionworld.fandom.com/wiki/Shadowsword) Could the that the game code allows for all the stat changes to go only one way. (althought this wouldn’t really work with normal non-cursed weapons which give maluses to combat skill). Anyhow for Drirr it’s a very good weapon, stamina affects damage taken and how much you heal if you rest. With Hannah’s Restoration the second point is a non-issue and drirr can usually kill anything in one turn and has enough speed to go first most of the time.
To my knowledge there is no way to un-curse objects or even make them better, maybe it was planned at some point?
I found that identifying objects actually exists in the game though! But it’s horribly expensive.
I remember reading somewhere that you can use the flowers 15 times or something like that.
This is also a good moment to return to the first island, and touch the two glowing pillars in the old Dji-Fadh building (the reward for promise of the music crystal).
As for Sira and Mellthas, it gives you a bit more flexibility on how to make your party. For example this time I’m going to go with Siobhan and Kunagh, rather than having to lug along the useless piece of trash which is Mellthas 🙂
The viewpoint does change, there are several caves that are given this more “large” look. Problem is that then the chests kind of look tiny…
Since the 3d engine is basically at the level of wolf3d, one can not really ask for more I suppose.
The optional cave is kind of fun I found, the loot is great (you get the best helmet and the second best sword) and with a bit of memory jogging and backtracking you don’t even really need a map.
That’s not the end of it yet either, because you still need to resolve the conflict between the humans and the iskai.
Have you gone to the optional cave dungeon? (South of Kounos near a waterfall). That one is a doozy 🙂
Maini is definitely the weakest part of the game, I do agree. There is not much rhyme or reason why particular people have some information.
Also note that the dungeon below Kounos is not pointless, but the reason to go there is given to you only at the very end of this part of the game.
The manual does explain quite a bit, then there is Albion wiki to see the actual weapon stats.
I suppose one reason they don’t show the statistics in the Examine window is that it would either reveal the cursed objects, or would require adding a whole “identify object” game mechanic.
Maybe we can ask Jurie?
Hehe, except for about 20 potions from the healer I’m trying to have a clean playthrough. Even trying to not scumsave too much. I did have to reach for the walkthrough in the Maini part though, my memory of that quest is hazy and there is really a lot of walking back and forth.
Rainer can pick any lock that does not say “this lock can not be picked”. You just need to try to pick it a lot. With trapped locks it might be useful to use lock picks but it’s really not necessary.
**SPOILER FOR THE CRYSTAL**
So, this crystal usefulness kind of depends. At the end of the Dji-Fadh dungeon you will find a being that you can promise the crystal to. They will give you some useful information in exchange for the promise, but as far as I can say it’s not actually necessary to give them the crystal.
However, later in the game you can find another person who is bored out of their mind, and you can give them the crystal in exchange for a nifty throwing axe. There are other music crystals in the game so it’s as you like.
– Should I invest all skill points when going to the combat trainer or hold of to train other stuff somewhere else, god knows where? This game’s explanation of mechanics is so very obtuse!
YES! Using all your points to train people in close combat is crucial and will make the game _much_ easier. I’d even recommend training Tom as much as you can even before going to the basement in the hunters clan house. And definitely train Drirr before leaving the island.
As for the dungeon where the killer fled, I’ve made a short video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNpds21F8Bo
Nice. I’m in the Beloveno part as well at the moment, but taking a bit of a break to play something else.
Right now I was camping the small village Kantos to wait for the trainer who only visits between 8 and 9. This is a bit of a bummer mechanic, as you can’t really advance time while in a 2D part, and the 3D cities are a bit far to plan this well.
I think the main reason for the 3D is the scare factor. In 3D the oppressing nature of the dungeon with monster sounds is much better, and you get the “monster jumped you from the side” element. Scary 2D games require blacking out most of the screen and rather costly light effects.
Btw that plate part, later in the game it’s a good sport to revisit the place and just wreck all of the trapped monsters.
Also, if you move your mouse to the very bottom of the 3D view, the arrow changes and you can look down (same goes for up). I found navigating the maze easier that way.
The first time I played the game was when it was released with Czech translation in the aforementioned Score magazine. The translation was okay, however, back then localisation wasn’t really advanced. Strings were substituted as-is, without correct inflection nor conjugation.
Weird green tint indeed 🙂 In my current playthrough I only stayed on the first island until I could get Big Iskai Sword and Iskai Armor for Drirr, and Frost Avalanche for Sira. You could level it all up but it’s not really necessary. On the second island Frost Splinter and Frost Crystal are more than enough (and fully trained Frost Splinter works even against Animal 3, which I don’t think avalanche does)
Over-C usually means faster than lightspeed.
I think it is Rainer that mentions that some of the technologies that Humans possess are not yet fully understood, such as their FTL drives.
I suppose that they do need to share some common tech, between comms and drives. If you have FTL drive, then you probably do want FTL comms. Maybe it’s almost like homing pigeons and they just fire small FTL message tubes back to Earth 😀
Here is what my dosbox-staging config looks like:
This assumes the whole Albion folder from GOG is in ~/Applications/DOS/ALBION
fullscreen = true
output = texturepp
windowresolution = resizable
scaler = none
glshader = none
mixer sb reverse
mount c ~/Applications/DOS
imgmount d ~/Applications/DOS/ALBION/game.ins -t iso -fs iso
Then I run the dosbox from ~/Applications/DOS like so:
/Applications/dosbox-staging.app/Contents/MacOS/dosbox -conf dosbox-albion.conf
Didn’t know this similarity was “officially acknowledged”. After seeing Avatar it felt hard to not see the parallels. “A person coming to a new world, and suddenly needing to save it from its own kind” might be a genre of its own now I suppose. I liked the polite refusal to criticise the game by the Celtologist though 😀
Just finished the first quest. It is now indeed time to level up Sira, and try to grab all the best gear for Drirr.
Usually I didn’t go all the way to max the Frost Avalanche, just having it is already quite good, can be used later.
When in a pickle without it later on, you can always use the magical stiletto to freeze enemies.
On my side I am using DosBox-X. I’ve copied the whole GOG ALBION folder as it is, and partially copied the Albion setup from GOG to mount the CD. (just the imgmount part)
Then it’s a matter of running DOSBOX with my Albion.conf
I’ll add the config here later today.
If you ever plan to min/max the game:
** SPOILER ALERT **
In the first real dungeon you may or may not find a place with three blue light pillars. The game doesn’t really tell you what they do AFAIK. Touching them permanently increases some stat for all of your party.
It turns out that you will be able to return to this place _much_ later in the game, with more people in the party.
After playing for a little bit more things come back to mind.
– Food is heavy, get used to the “Throw rations away” screen.
– If you want to enjoy the game fully, it is better to be generous the first time your sense of gratitude is challenged 🙂
– The first cellar has rather tough fights, it’s better to leave the house before going in there, and spend money to get combat training, as you don’t actually better at anything when you just level up (DnD style).
– The merchant of various goods has a chest lying next to her, manipulating it prompts you if you want to buy exotic weapons for 45 gold. This is probably the best investment you can do early on in the game (ideally before you even go to the first cellar).
– Merchants don’t have the same buy/sell prices, and they have limited space. It is sometimes useful to buy a cheap object just to be able to sell stuff for more money.
– Specifically I would recommend to keep space for the various monster Trii at the weapons merchant, who gives most gold for them, as you will be bringing these by the dozen.
I’ve got through day 1 and day 2 I believe, around the time it went out on iPad. It looks amazing, but has a very janky animation that makes it quite confusing to navigate the train.
The interesting thing is that it is a real-time adventure, if you miss an event: tough luck.
According to this Gold brings hints and achievements mostly: https://www.destructoid.com/the-last-express-gold-edition-launches-on-steam/
looks like it only has “more stuff” so the experience should not be much different
one thing though I wish it had would be a map 😀
One thing the game doesn’t tell you is what the spells do. I suppose this is somewhere in the manual but back in the day I didn’t have it. (as most games, I got it when it was a freebie on a CD of a game magazine)
There were some cool hacks though. Hunting robbers in the town of Ishar 3 so you can get the good weapons from the start. Saving/Loading after missing with the Lava Axe because it was so slow…
I’d like to try these again too. I remember that playing them was quite a pain due to the fact that your party members could hate each other. You went to sleep in a tavern just to wake up to one of your party members murdering another one and leaving with all your gold.
The trick I used was to roll the party, and then try to heal the members between each other. If somebody refused, they were ousted.
I remember also that stamina was super annoying (especially in the third one when you get to the cold realm).
In the end I was never able to finish them, mostly due to frustration. But I guess with a walkthrough, or at least maps, it should be doable.
I don’t really like the idea of needing to actively save as it pulls me out of the game. If the game has a well made auto-save feature I think dying can add to the experience as it shows the consequences of actions.
Braid-like time rewind would also go a long way.
I think the main problem with adventures in this regard is that replaying the same section is not really fun, as it is quite mechanical.
The big difference is that gobliiins is mouse-controlled and afaik the area is always only one one screen. I don’t think you can die either.
The insane thing too is that the first gobliiins at least is in 16 colours (with rolling palette).
It’s also possible to play on archive.org https://archive.org/details/msdos_Rise_of_the_Triad_-_Dark_War_1994 it’s stream only but well, archive does not really go out of the way to obfuscate the zip download, if you take a peek at the network tab.
I started a new game with the remastered version but in the retro mode with verbs. I don’t think the new graphics bring much, compared to e.g. the Full Throttle remaster.
Nevertheless it’s quite painless to play on a tablet and I’m looking forward for the commentary track, once I’ve finished at least one playthrough.
I will second this opinion. Hexen is just way better than heretic. One thing I remember about playing it that I either finished, or almost finished it before learning that you could jump. I think it was originally mapped to / or \ key. Until very late I’ve understood why I wasn’t able to get so many of the “secret” items.
Hey! Thanks for the offer but unfortunately maintaining this is a bit out of my skillset.
However, the work was picked up by the awesome MaddTheSane. There is a GitHub thread with some discussion https://github.com/alunbestor/Boxer/issues/76
There are somewhat old binary builds of Madd’s branch here http://userweb.eftel.com/~almeath/mac/boxer/
I may try to re-release a new binary build from his branch. As far as I understand there were some issues with performance compared to the latest DOSBox due to some OpenGL issue.
Also, one interesting multiplayer pinball table is the Alvin G football one: http://www.pinrepair.com/wanted/football.htm
Two players facing each other with the table tilting both ways. I wonder how would this translate into a game.
Well, actually if the screen were split in half each player could see the field from their perspective. But that would be probably too much for DOS.
Out of these I played Terminal Velocity, Shadow Warrior and Redneck Rampage.
I don’t remember much about Terminal Velocity but Redneck Rampage had one of the weirdest characters and settings. Aliens have gone into a southern US village and abducted most of the population which they replaced with clones. You are playing a redneck drunk going to save your friend Bubba.
For the 7th I’ve almost had the level cleared after tons of medkit use and actual shooting, before I caved and looked where the conversion machine is 😀 Also for the puzzle after being locked with the C4 I used a logic probe, my old gnarly hand just wasn’t fast enough.
I tried using the iq enhancement drug but I didn’t understand what it’s supposed to be doing except changing how arrow keys behave.
It’s done and Shodan’s no more. At least for now, we all know what happens in SS2 🙂
I remember playing this game quite vividly some 20 years back. I’ve gotten as far as being able to roam around floors 1-6 but I’ve never managed to get rid of the laser. I haven’t had internet and completely missed the small button to release the force field around the isotope x-22. Much much later in my second play through which I haven’t finished I managed to find it.
This time I was more vigilant about the various messages and managed to pull through without many issues. The one thing that tricked me was the reactor code. I believed that it was the one that should pop at one of the screens on the 6th floor but that wasn’t it. (Was it just me dreaming or is the code that shows on one f of the screens useless?)
Of course I had the memo that I should destroy all of the computers but by the time I read it all of them were already blasted.
I’ve applied the rush-b from regen room into hordes of mutants strategy quite often so my final stats are not that glorious. Ended up with over 30 med patches and tons of ammo too.
The game has held up remarkably well. The story, the level design and the rather impressive variety of weapons kept me in until the end. I’m definitely up to play SS2 again soon.
In the comparisons between the remake and the classic the striking difference is the music. The remake is much more atmospheric where as the old version was vibing.
I still look forward for the eventual release, especially since the SS3 is now as good as dead. Hopefully they’ll remake the 2 as well?
I remember playing on keyboard and mouse back in the time. It was quite easy as I remember, probably because I was a massive cheater.
Now I play the d1x-rebirth on a raspberry-pi through emulation station. It’s a very neat experience, using a DualShock 3 controller it works very well. I also suck at the game but that is not the controllers fault 🙂
I’ve seen that some people have looked at the github repo and realized that I have not pushed my changes. So I have done that now. If anybody is interested to collaborate do not hesitate to send pull requests. It would be cool if DGC took over the project!
For me this seems to be a problem with many older RPGs. They require a lot of investment into discovery of the correct way of playing the game. Also, I find them often quite unforgiving when it comes to character creation.
How is Ultima VII when it comes to description of spells and weapons? Are they in game accessible or is it guess work like in Ishars and Realms of Arkania?
The caves actually have rules, which is something I learned way too late. If I remember correctly a slimed cavern means that there is a hole nearby. Then you have to look at the map and apply minesweeper logic to it.
I agree that the timing is the worst and it’s very hard to get this game to work properly.
Storage limits force you to build your bases in specific way so they add a bit to the ‘strategic’ part of the game I guess.
Modern x-com games do not have munition limitations but I guess it’s the time and age. I agree that handling ammunition is a bit of a time waster (in the beginning, because of laser rifle). In Apocalypse you could have a real shortage of ammo which made this mechanic more interesting.
Knowing the map type beforehand would be really cool, maybe there is a mod for that somewhere? Would be an interesting addition to OpenXCom
Some inconsistencies I would add:
– Aliens can forget where your base is once they have found it.
– It takes 3 hours to reload or swap missiles on a plane. I am pretty sure in reality it can be done in minutes.
– Aliens hardly ever send out more than 2 ufos at the same time.
– Chryssalids defy law of conservation of matter.
– Of course the biggest inconsistency is: $60000 a MONTH for a scientist in 1999 dollars?
Laser Rifle is the weapon to go. It has unlimited ammunition, its quite precise and very fast. Most of the enemies can be one or two shot with it. You can use all of the plasma weapons as a source of income or just as a fun addition to the arsenal.
Depending on the version you play the game has a difficulty bug which would reset it to easiest if you load the game during the tactical part. This would later result in Microprose upping the difficulty in the sequel to astronomical level because people were complaining that the game was too easy. I don’t know if there is an easy way to check if the version is buggy or not but I believe it was fixed in the GOG/Steam versions.
These games are definitely a blast, and especially well suited for hot seat multi-player.
Scorched Earth was actually discussed in podcast episode 4: https://www.dosgameclub.com/scorched-earth/
Could you share your dos game? It’s always cool to see new ones made today!
I remember vaguely to have played this as a kid but not enough to have left any impressions on me.
Now, after the years when I fired it up I felt quite disappointed. Some say that this game is one of the worst fighting games ever made and now after playing it for a while I must say that I agree with them.
The controls are wooden, the adversaries have massive reach and the whole thing seems quite unfinished.
Yeah. It’s mostly a force of habit and that arrow keys on Macs are really not good for gaming. Also with a mouse look it is easier to strafe.
How much does Blood auto-aim? Is it like Doom? Because the game does have a look up-down controls by default.
@Pix: Yeah, it seems that in many of these older games the developers must have had some special mode to skip animations or tested all levels with cheats.
I can only imagine that the beta-testers would go nuts had they had to wait for the animations to finish.
It feels great to play this game again after so many years.
A few hints for new players:
The goal of the game is to transport a certain number of passengers from cave to cave without dying. You can die from a hard impact to a wall, or from lack of energy.
Energy is represented by the yellow “food” bar, in order to get more energy you have to pick up the stone (land on it without a passenger in the copter) and then throw it on the tree.
There are three types of passengers: a man, a woman and an old man. The only difference between the three is how long can they stay in water, an old man will drown immediately, a man can stay in the water for a while and the woman can swim for quite a while. If you land in water anywhere they will swim towards you.
Beware of the bird, it announces itself with a shriek.
One thing that I remember well from this game was that when God mode was activated (either from a pickup or by cheating) the character was floating above ground, was invincible, could throw balls of holy light with effect comparable to BFG and, funnily, was yawning all the time from boredom.
Some enemies would pretend to give up and then try to shoot you in the back, there were jumping platforms… this game was epic.
Duck Tales is so great. I have played this at my dad’s work for years. I managed to win for the first time after maybe a year of playing.
Have you managed to make it run at a correct speed? I have not had that much luck in DosBox, especially the mountain climbing parts can get quite frustrating.September 30, 2018 at 6:13 am in reply to: Favourite Gags and Jokes? Heavy spoilers, potentially :-p #1917
I loved that you have to get in line for looting the Governor’s mansion, but then the clock actually never advances (and Guybrush comments on it).
And the fact that the Swordmaster has a bunch of T-Shirts ready for the people who have defeated her.
Rnlf already mentioned the way to get the navigator’s head, but also what’s great is that the two other books are “How to arm yourself in combat” and “How to get a leg up in treasure hunting” which is a great way to name a trilogy.
As a complete neophyte to the Monkey Island franchise I have really enjoyed the first one. Most of the puzzles were quite logical. Now I am on the second game, but I already feel that this one will require a lot more work to complete.
For now I do not have much grief except for objects that are really tiny and hidden in weird places.
I am playing the game on the phone and regularly switch between the touch and touchpad modes to scan the screen for pixels.