Category Archives: RPG

I Am Overburdened

A title that serves as both an expression and description of gameplay, I Am Overburdened is, in principle, about everybody’s (non)favourite part of RPGs: having too much loot and struggling to juggle what to keep and what to ditch.

Should I go for those +5 gloves of nail-biting or stick with my powerglove of uncanny referencing?

The game doesn’t exactly deliver on this promise, per se, though. Funnily enough, this is a far better outcome: instead resulting in a fast paced arcade-roguelike-ish affair with an extremely streamlined loot system and minimal inventory tetris. Unlike its namesake, I am Overburdened is a simple pleasure to run through, albeit (for a commercial release) a relatively short one.

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Nightkeep (demo)

Nightkeep is, well, as its indiegogo page puts it: “an action RPG platformer inspired by such classics as Castlevania Bloodlines, Demon’s crest and a variety of JRPGs” – yes, please. Ture, it’s yet another retro-style game wearing its influences strongly on its sleeves, but the demo here is polished enough in its own right that Nightkeep looks to be shaping up to serve an interesting mixture of platforming action.

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Let’s Play Helherron #3: First Steps

Welcome back to my playthrough of old school tactics RPG Helherron. In previous articles, I went through the painstaking process of creating eight characters who hopefully won’t die painfully. Now, I begin the actual game.

The brief intro

After the arduous process of creating characters, who may or may not even survive the first battle, we are finally welcomed into the game proper.

A quick exposition tale tells is that the king has been kidnapped, villages are being raided by furries, and if that wasn’t enough, a curse has been placed over the region.  In the midst of this, the adventuring team Dimetrodon Inc is dumped into our little house. Pretty cramped for 8 people, but those were the times.

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[Let’s Play] Helherron #2: Character Creation (cont.)

Welcome back to the second article covering my palythrough of the excellent old school game Helherron.

When we last left off, we had whipped up the first half of our party, a relatively standard D&D style grouping of fighter, mage, healer and thief. While this sounds like a pretty competent mix, we sorely need some heavy hitting tanks, and more magical firepower than a single mage can provide.

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Let’s Play Helherron #1: Character Creation

I’m going to try my hand at something different, and test out a “Let’s Play” style series of articles. The popularity of Youtube means it’s disturbingly hard to find a let’s play that isn’t some guy over-the-top screaming at the screen and constantly nagging you to subscribe. Just like we are taking blogging back to its roots by focusing just on the games, I want to bring back the more traditional playthrough that focuses just on documenting the game, kind of like the cRPG addict‘s approach.

The first session will cover a game I recently wrote about: old school tactical RPG Helherron. A hardcore tactics-RPG game that treats you mean, but keeps you keen with amazing tactical combat, rewarding exploration, and satisfying character progression. Check out the link for an overview of the game.

I chose to cover Helherron for two reasons: it’s probably one of the best tactical RPGs out there, even now, over a decade after it was made, yet there is little to no coverage of this excellent indie gem. Secondly, I never managed to finish it, and hoping documenting the game will help push me to go all the way (and possibly attract helpful hints from commenters).

We begin our first article with the rather involved character creation process to get through first. Let’s begin.

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[Freeware] Mariovania

Let’s face it, Bowser is horribly incompetent. The number of times his plans for world domination have been thwarted by a overweight plumber from Brooklyn should be enough of a signal to call it quits. But what if Bowser… teamed up with Dracula? That is very the question Mariovania answers.

Die, Bowser! You don’t belong in this world! Not quite the same ring to it, but just go with it.

mariovania_1

Actually, considering Drac’s similarly lacklustre record, actually, probably not a whole lot would be different. But the combination of Mario platforming and Castlevania stlye exploration works surprisingly well.

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Sample Action Game 01

With a name like Sample Action Game 01, expectations aren’t exactly going to be high, but where it lacks in the creative naming department, Action Game 01 more than delivers in terms of actual game. There’s not just a completely full freeware game to be found here, no, there’s oh so so much more.

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New Retro Vault: Helherron

Ah, Helherron. A relatively hardcore tactics-RPG game. Treats you mean, but keeps you keen with amazing tactical combat, rewarding exploration, and satisfying character progression.

It was an old, tough beast, not dissimilar to Mum’s old mutton dinner, with an unforgiving difficulty curve and even more unforgiving U.I., but probably was the best tactical RPG out there. Hell, it probably still is.

Then the developer left it all behind to become a Buddhist monk in Japan. Yes, really.

But now, Helherron has been resurrected, as the developer – some 10 years later – returned to civilisation, adding innumerable bug fixes, balance adjustments, improved A.I. and, of course, more loot. And there’s more to come.

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Fall of the Dungeon Guardians

Fall of the Dungeon Guardians is an old school party based first person dungeon crawler, and it’s pretty neat for a small indie effort. It’s also on sale right now, for around €5,00. I took this as the opportunity to drop myself to the bottom of an 8 floor jail dungeon, hunt down 15 escaped convicts, and climb my way back to the surface. Then I played the game.

FalloftheDungeonGuardians_3

So how does a single player dungeon crawler with a MMO-style combat system go? Surprisingly well actually, if a bit hard to follow at times. And of the inevitable comparison to Legend of Grimrock? In some ways it’s not as good. In some ways it’s better.

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Chimera Crusader: Defender of Dominicus

Chimera Crusader: Defender of Dominicus, is an ultra retro-condensed RPG that harks back to the early days of DOS (or perhaps even earlier), CC:DD brings us back to a certain old school charm, of black screens and abrasive beeps, but then hammers it away by being about as forgiving as an offshore license tie-in NES cart.

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