This is a great gift from GOG.com! For anyone who has registered an account during their beta period (which lasted at least over a year, I think) they are giving away a copy of Jagged Alliance: Deadly Games for free to anyone.
If you’ve read my blog for a while you will probably know that JA:DG counts to my absolute favorite games (together with JA1) so expect utmost nerdiness whenever I mention this game. For anyone who doesn’t know this pearl of a game yet, it’s a turn-based, tactical strategy game with role-playing game elements where you control a squad of mercenaries around wilderness areas of enemy territory to fulfill various foolhardy missions. The main difference of JA:DG to it’s prequel is that it doesn’t come with a particular story or campaign but with a collection of scenarios and an editor that can be used to create your own scenarios and campaigns. The biggest fun part of JA:DG are however the many characters that you can choose from to assemble your team, which all have their very own quirks and perks.
If I wouldn’t already own the original box of this game I’d probably be even more looking forward to this gift but as it stands I’m going to enjoy getting this game yet another time. There’s something to the first two JA’s that the later and newer Jagged Alliance 2 titles lost. Maybe it’s the story of JA2 that I didn’t like so much or it’s simply the cozily tootling MIDI music of the first two games in this series.
A video courtesy of CRPGAddict that shows the final gameplay of the classic space exploration/role-playing game Starflight. I remember playing this game back in the day on the Amiga but never really came around to finish it. But now that I’ve read how the game’s story resolves with a big surprise in it toward the end it dims to me what a great plot this game had. There are many of today’s modern role-playing games that story-wise would pale in comparison that Starflight.
This was also one of those games from the era where I realized my affinity for science fiction-themed games. Back then whenever there was a new review to be read in a game magazine about a space-themed adventure or RPG my eyes started glowing. I liked the idea of flying around with the ship and explore a vast number of planets and Starflight was basically a whole galaxy squeezed on a floppy disk.
If you’re interested in classic role-playing games I recommend to check out CRPGAddict’s blog! I don’t know how he manages to find the time but he already finished playing 26 games since he started last year. And not only that! He analyzed them, drew maps about them, and reviewed them in a very detailed way. On top of that he made a long list of CRPGs that he yet wants to play and review and it seems he’s serious about it. Determination is everything!
There’s also the whole write-down about Starflight, no less than nine blog posts!! Check it out! You will certainly have enough to read for a while!
An elaborate interview from 2009 with Richard Garriott aka Lord British talking about his beginnings as a game maker, his weird house and toy collection, Tabula Rasa and his flight into space. Some people call him a nerd (probably because they’re envious) but I think he just simply had the chance to do the right thing at the right time, following his passion about making games and becoming very successful with it, eventually earning millions. This is something that is not so easily possible anymore today like it was back in the pioneer days of home-computing. However he’s the living proof that the single most important driving force to be successful is to have passion about what you’re doing, being it creating games or anything else. Watch and be inspired!
Another secret gem from the Golden Age of RPG, Origin’s Martian Dreams can best be described as a fantastic Steampunk themed role-playing game set in a ‘Ultima meets Jules Verne universe’ where you travel with Nikola Tesla, Sigmund Freud, Nellie Bly and several others to Mars to rescue a handful of important people that stranded there some years before. If this doesn’t sound like a good premise then what does?!!
Back when I was younger … much younger … the first computer I ever possessed was a Atari 600 XL which I got from my parents after a lot of begging. I had exactly one game for it, a cartridge with Jungle Hunt on it. Needless to say this got boring very quickly. My friends all had a C64 already and so it wasn’t until long that I also got a C64 and sold the Atari to a friend.
Back then I always knew the Atari was no match for the mighty C64 and for some part (16Kb RAM) this is true. But I never really realized until recently that the Atari 600/800 XL had much better graphics than the C64. The 256 color palette was already way ahead of it’s time and it had 4 sound voices instead of C64s 3 voices etc. But I suggest you see for yourself about that in this nifty video showing gameplay of a 2010 produced game, the RPG named His Dark Majesty …
I’ve mentioned before that it’s possible to run Sentinel Worlds I: Future Magic in DOSBox with Tandy sound enabled but I couldn’t figure out how to get it working. Today I’m back with good news in that I can tell you how to get this fixed so the trillions of SWFM fans out there can enjoy this fantastic game with the excellent Tandy sound!
The classic dungeon crawler Sword of Fargoal has been released for the iPhone and it turns out that it’s one of the few computer/console-game-to-iPhone conversions I’ve came across that are actually fun to play on the touch-screen (unlike, say, Sonic, Bomberman et al). Go check it out if you’re into RPGs with an ever-changing maze-like dungeon accompanied by nicely done atmospheric music and sound effects.
After their last RPG masterpiece release, the Might & Magic 6-Pack, gog.com have now released Realms of Arkania 1+2 and 3. RoA is the English version of what I only knew as Das Schwarze Auge in German back in the 16-bit days of Amiga. If my memory serves me right only the first part of RoA made it to the Amiga while the two followers were only available for DOS.
Realms of Arkania is classic hardcore role-playing, flip3D style intermezzed with isometric combat screens and you can get this for a ridiculous cheap price now.
So far gog.com is only releasing DOS or Windows based games. For some games I wish they’d add Amiga games to their line-up simply because many Amiga games were better than their DOS conversions, just take a look at highly regarded Hired Guns. in case of Hired Guns you feel that the developers were a team of Amiga enthusiasts. The DOS version feels bland and rushed compared to the shiny and atmosphere-oozing Amiga version.
Either way, for DOS games Good Old Games are packing their releases up with a copy of DOSBox pre-configured and ready to install and run. For Amiga versions they would probably have to pack up a copy of WinUAE to assure a hassle-free experience. Not sure how that would work out.
While Jagged Alliance is without discussion one of the finest squat squad-based strategy games ever made that has seen the daylight, I especially enjoy the ‘personal’ characteristics that the mercenaries bring with them and the frivolous Butt Groping demonstrated in this clip shows this side of JADG nicely. The map seen in this video is one of the scenarios that can be found [intlink id="37" type="post"]here[/intlink].
Thy Dungeonman 3: Behold Thy Graphics, a text/graphics adventure from Homestarrunner in the style of the very early days of computing. Complete with fake floppy load delay and amber screen display! You find yourself in a dungeon cell with doom lurking all around you. The texts are intentionally exaggerated old ‘english’ and once you got out of the first area you’ll notice that this game plays quite smooth. It’s a short but funny and while you’re there, you find several other oldschool imitations on Homestarrunner and videlectrix.com.