Currently playing: Operencia - The stolen sun

July 6, 2020

The Legacy - Review




Game reviewed: The Legacy
Version: 
Created by: Magnetic Scrolls
Released: 1992
Formats: Pc
Difficulty: 8/10

I have come to a halt with my playing of The Legacy. I am not stuck. I have only lost interest into finishing the game. Now in the end where it needs perseverence I have  been charmed by Operencia - The stolen sun. But the important thing is that I have played it enough to give it a fari review I believe.

Gameworld & Story

The gameworld is all confined to the mansion but it is a huge mansion consisting of at least 8 levels. They all differ graphically from each other and offers their own challenges. The story is unfolded through notes and diaries found all over the place. That is actually the main source of informaiton of what has happend and what you should do. I think that part worked pretty well. 

Rating: 2.5

Economy

There is no economy worth talking about. There are no money and no shops. You are totally dependend on the limited resources you can find in the house. Those limiting resources which could destroy your game if used amply are: First aid kits, energy crystals and ammunition.

Rating: 1

NPC & Interaction

There are very few NPC:s in the game and the dialogues are very limited. There are interactions with the environemnt though like buttons and doors. But overall the RPG view of NPC and interactions are very limited.

Rating: 1

Monsters, tactics and combat system

There are quite a range of different monsters, horrors and entities in the game. Each level has its own style. From Zombies to ghosts and gargoyles. The variety is quite large and they all have their strengths and weaknesess. Some are good at range attacks and some at melee. Some only frightens you. It is however almost impossible to know if the weapons in the game have different effects on them since you have no damage statistics for them.

Tactics are almost non-existens for the monsters. If you are near enough they will see you and hunt you down. I have never seen any monsters retreat. They always fight to the death.

The combat system in the game is very simple. You just click with not hit-zones or whatever. Your hit-chance is only determined by you skills and not by any practical manouvers. Still the variety of weapons - both melee and ranged - allows for possible different strengths albeit unknown to this author.

Rating: 3

Magic system


You acquire magical spells by finding scrolls which you scribe into your spellbook. You can then cast them while holding the spellbook in your hand. All spells have their own description and skill level. I never bothered to use magic that much. Or rather, I did not have too and I choosed to conserve the few magical crystals I had found until I really needed them. The magical spells sound terrific when you read about them but I don´t know if their practical use is that much different against different foes.

Rating: 2

Character generation & development


You can choose between several predefined characters in the beginning or customise your own. I choosed one of the predefined ones. Experience is improved by reading notes and explore rooms. Best of all is that you can buy skills immediately with your experience points. The higher the skill the more expensive it costs. Very good and flexible system I must say. There are no levels and thereby no improvments of your character in any other way than you own spending on the skills.

Rating: 3

Map design

I thought the level design was quite ok. Even though the graphics doesn´t allow for much interior furniture and most rooms looks the same it varies from floor to floor. All the maps are equally large. I don´t remember know if they are 20x20 hexes or so. Perhaps it would be more unpredictable if maps actually varied in size since you will now understand you have missed parts if you only discovers half a level.

Rating: 2.5

Manual

The manual consists of some 60+ pages and is really well written. Nothing else is expected from the masters of manuals company Microprose.

Rating: 4

Graphics, Sound and Interface

The graphics in the game was acceptable in 1992-1993 but it is hard to make it justice in Dosbox on a 24 inch monitor nowadays. It was one of the first games in its generation to use 3d-environements just like Ultima Underworld. The Sound of the game is a bit disappointing. Apart from the mediocre theme music I did not hear any more music I remember during my playing. Just a few soundeffects and even though they sounded sampled I was not that impressed.

The interface is both good and bad. The good thing is that they dried to develop a windows based experience where you can resize the different windows and place them wherever you like. It works pretty good. You could do most things you are used to today like drag´n drop item from the world window to your hands for example. The bad things are that you don´t know how much a skill will cost until you try to uplevel it with you experience points. There is no confirmation, you will have to reload if you are not satisfied. Also you don´t know when your experience level increase since you don´t necessarily see that bar when you explore the mansion. But overall I am satisfied and think they have made a pretty good job.

Rating: 3

Gameplay
This gives a final CRPG value of 21. I do recommend this game if you have the patience to solve the puzzles. My advice would be that you make your own maps and write down where every item is because you have so limited carrying capability that you will have to run back and forth with items through all the floors. This is something my patience doesn´t allow for today.

The game comes close to the rating of Anvil of Dawn and Faery Tale 2 which seems like an acceptable place.

Rating: 3


Section
Rating
Gameworld & Story
2.5
Economy
1
NPC & Interactions
1
Monsters, tactics & combat system
2
Magic system
2
Character generation & development
3
Map design
2.5
Manual
4
Graphics, Sound and Interface
3
Summary CRPG value
21


Gameplay
3



June 21, 2020

The Legacy - Deeper than expected

A few more hours have passed with me playing the game since my last post and I must say that I am really not very much nearer any sort of completion. The game just expands with new levels all the time. So har I have discovered at least seven levels.

Every new level only add to the list of strange items, new notes and rituals but never any clear place of where those rituals should be performed and in what order. It is clear I will have to stop the curse in this house from repeating itself every 50th year but when and where I will have to do my really important tasks still eludes me.

I have gathere a lot of notes, so many so that my document wallet now is full. Fortunately I always take a screenshot of every note so I can go back and read them.

In my last play I had just entered the top level which I call the Mausoleum.


I know that I eventually will have to relocate all the items I have found and bring them to a certain place or combine them. That will be a really tedious task since I have no maps with the items noted so I will have to look through every room in every level to find them. From the beginning I thought the puzzles would be more local or the game smaller so that I had a chance to memorize everything but not anymore.

I found a portal in the Maousoleum which led me to an astral plane in which I endlessly run around to find any way out. Eventually I found a crypt with a chest but I had no clue what I should do there.


The portal to the astral plane
The crypt

Special notes:
  • Many places have runes on the walls filled with magical energy but I have no idea what I should do with these.
  • The notes says I can banish the winged demons (on the upper floor ?) with holy water but I never found out how to use them. I tried to throw them but failed. Perhaps my skill is low enough. After I returned back to the floor I opted to kill all the winged creatures instead with my axe from the asylum.
  • I should try to find the Book of Gates which will tell me how to get to the Ehtereal Plane and the Astral Plane. Some of these two planes I am sure I have already discovered. Perhaps I even found the book but couldn´t carry it around.
  • I found a room with different items - among them a demon mask - but I cannot take them. I don´t know if I will be able to later on or if that is by design. In that room are also a jade stone said to allow me to walk where others are barred. 






Somewhere on the upper floors I found a jade stone or gem. I remember the painting from the entrance that had a carving which might fit this stone so I run down again. And to my luck and enjoyment the stone fit perfectly and crushed the painting, revealing a secret corridor behind. It eventually led me down the stairs to a place which resembled old egyptian style.

On that level the most interesting thing I found was some sort of religious cloak which I could put on. I had no idea where to use it though. I also found doors that I could not open at this stage so I had to return from there to explore other parts of the house. This time I opted to go down the basement. The first time I was there it was too tough to meet the gargoyles but since then I have a new bulletproof vest and an axe.



I very throughly searched around the basement and eventually completed the level but being none the wiser. I had no other place to go but to allow myself to fall down a trapdoor which led down to what I call the caverns. There was a few stairs down to the cavern from the basement but they where all blocked by monsters which I could neither defeat nor sneak past.

Since I had found a healingspell by now things was a little easier because I could use both first aid kits and crystals to give me power to heal myself. Even though I gathered a few interesting items in the caverns like pestle and mortar, museum plaque and matchboxes I was still desperate to find the place where I can put any of these things together. I took all items and carried them to the stair entrance of the cavern so I knew I had everything at the same place when I had to return later on in the game. Then I left the place and returned back to the basement. This time I tried to go down the stairs earlier blocked by the monsters but now these stairs led me to a new place I had never seen before or missed. I am not sure which.



I found some strange items down here as well but was also attacked by strange brown-winged creatures. I was strong enough to fight them and eventually found stairs leading down to yet another level with fireball-throwing mages and strange beings. Those "mages" which I call them was practically impossible to harm until I found some sort of magical dagger. Then I could take on a few of them at least. Now I begin to worry that my supplies around the house of first aid kits and crystal stones will not be enough.

I have now been around most levels in this game. What I still have missed is probably secret doors and locked doors that I have been unable to open. Still with all the items and information I have gathered I should be able to solve some mysteries. I am just not sure exactly where to execute them. I think this will be my next big task in this game. To tie the sack so to speak. I hope to be able to endure until then because now things have become a bit tedious.

Only with the magical dagger could I hurt these "mages"