|I am easily grasped by boxes like this|
- 8 graphically different dungeons with several levels each.
- Over 80 monsters (many with its unique graphics)
- 6 races and 12 classes
- Over 300 spells
- Day and Night cycles
- Food consumption
- Equipment degradation
You start in an inn and during the evening you overhear the guests complaining about the war with the elves that are draining the land Thyn of soldiers. But most of the time prominent guests speaks of strange creatures that have been seen in the lands, far stronger and more dangerous than the orcs. When the Inn is about to close and most guests are about to go home, a wanderer introducing himself as Sarian tells you that the king of Thyn is aware that the war is not going well and needs help. He is looking for men to carry out a mission to the neighbouring land of Cyldane to call for supporting troops. Riches and fame will come to the ones who succeeds in that. Since you are a poor farmer you listen in. He continues saying that you of course will have to recruit a few companions. Go to the palace and mention my name and the King will surely help you out to look for the companions you need. The next morning you turn up at the palace and the count asks you for help. He says his blacksmith will provide your companions with equipment and suggests you start to look out for your companions and get away as soon as possible. And he adds that if you could find out why the elves are being so strangely aggressive and find a way to stop that, it would be of great help. Time is running short for the count could not hold on for much longer.
A pretty average story but with two distinct goals. From here you are on your own and start up in the first inn you have come to in order to recruit your followers.
Party CreationOne of my most joyful tasks in an RPG is to create the party. It took one or two hours before I was satisfied with my party. It is quite easy to re-roll your stats with just a few keystrokes. The hard part is to find out the best composition for the party. I don´t remember anything from my old party so I had to start from scratch here.
At the starting inn you have the opportunity to look for new adventurers by selecting sex, race and trade. Sex actually matters since female characters have higher wisdom and constitution while males have higher strength. The races are Human, Half-Elf, Elf, Halfling, Dwarf and Half-Orc. They all have their strengths and weaknesses. The five attributes are strength, constitution, dexterity, intelligence and wisdom.
|The inn where you could find any companion you are looking for|
When the party were assembled we got out from the inn and found ourselves out in the wilderness. The real manual gives you a map of Thynn but I only found the real manual in german. You start out right outside the town in the middle right.
|The map of your county|
You don´t need to take many steps before you notice the random encounters. They are not always hostile and if you negotiate with them you will even be able to trade items or recruit people. Since I have filled all my six slots I will not have more rooms for any recruitment. What differs random encounters in this game from others in this genre is that you could always - yes ALWAYS - run from combat. This makes you pick your fights since they span from easy rats and ants to Grizzlys or Ogres which are very hard - if not impossible - to defeat at this stage. But remember, in order to progress to more dangerous areas of the game you have too be of sufficient level even though I imagine you could run from most fights. We´ll see how it develops further on in the game.
My own goal would be to run around in the wilderness to get acquainted with the land and to build up my characters to at least level 2 before making longer trips. Every character starts with some initial equipment and gold but you will very quickly want to get better armour and weapons. The number of items in the game is huge. There are hundreds of weapons, armours and miscellaneous items scattered around and most of them could be bought in the starting city. You will soon discover that gold is a precious commodity that you must try to gather as much as possible of to be able to afford your training into higher levels or learn new spells and languages.
The first few hours was spent on gaining experience, gold, equipment and rations from the foes. Depending on creature you could get equipment (only humanoids), rations (animals mostly), gold (thieves, bandits and the like) or a combination of all. Equipment could be sold at the town. Rations is used when you are resting your party or when the blacksmith is repairing equipment. If you run out of rations you will starve and the morale will degrade which affects your combat effectiveness. I don´t know yet if you could starve but you could surely not be able to rest and heal.
|The percentage of each character at the top represents the armour rating (higher is better)|
At one place in the east I found a priestess who stood waiting for something. I had no idea what to do but since I only had one special item I used it. By pure luck it did have effect. She begun to talk and gave me a healing staff. That staff went directly to my healer in the group. Which brings me to my next comment. You could not determine which weapon is better than another except for checking with the shop how much worth it has. I believe the healing staff is better than to fight with an ordinary quarter staff though.
|One single catchpole could be dealt with quite easily, but not a party of them|