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Reply 3620 of 4158, by newtmonkey

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clueless1 wrote on 2021-12-14, 23:57:

Not really playing this yet, but I just bought Grimoire: Heralds of the Winged Exemplar for 99 cents on GOG's Winter Sale. I did install it and check it out and it looks like a full-on modern remake of Wizardry 7. I'm impressed and the reviews have been pretty good, so I look forward to playing this sometime in the near future. If you're a Wiz 7 fan, check it out:
https://www.gog.com/game/grimoire_heral ... d_exemplar

It's awesome. It feels like it fits in perfectly in between Wizardry VII and VIII. It plays and feels a lot like VII but with some nice QoL features (useful automaps, autonavigation on automaps, in-game setting to adjust random encounter frequency), some interesting changes (larger party, lots of interesting new classes and races), and imo a much more interesting world to explore. Even the writing is similar to that of D W Bradley's. Knowing how much you enjoyed Wiz VI&VII, I think you will love this one.

Reply 3621 of 4158, by appiah4

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I was reading through a 1994 December issue of Computer Games Review magazine, and they had a review for Star Trail (Realms of Arkania 2). I know that game got a lot of coverage here, but the review was what really tipped me.. I think I'll give the series a try. Anything I should be wary of before I dive in feet first?

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 3622 of 4158, by clueless1

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appiah4 wrote on 2021-12-15, 06:54:

I was reading through a 1994 December issue of Computer Games Review magazine, and they had a review for Star Trail (Realms of Arkania 2). I know that game got a lot of coverage here, but the review was what really tipped me.. I think I'll give the series a try. Anything I should be wary of before I dive in feet first?

Yes. The role-playing system is much different than most. Really read through the manual. Especially the skills and spells. Decide early what you want to focus on, because it's very hard to become good at certain skills and spells unless you focus on them from the beginning. The good thing is the game is pretty good about giving the player multiple ways of accomplishing things, so if you didn't focus on a spell that you now need, there will be another way to accomplish that thing besides that spell you can't cast. I do recommend reading through guides and walkthroughs, as they give lots of insight. Experience points are given out in smaller amounts than is typical in RPGs, but they are also given out for solving some puzzles, and the system for leveling up compensates for the smaller experience point values. When you do level up, if you choose to assign points yourself, it will take a long time, but it is extremely satisfying. If you let the computer do it, it's much quicker but it doesn't do nearly as good a job as you would yourself. Save often so you can reload if you regret a decision. Lastly, the items, spells and skills are largely identical between all three games of the trilogy, so don't worry about finding guides specific to Star Trail. I've found lots of applicable info in a Blade of Destiny guide for use in Shadows over Riva. Here's a few links that you'll find useful:
Character Creation and Development:
https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/pc/564655-realm … tiny/faqs/64921
Low Spoiler Guide:
https://www.angelfire.com/hero/tjekanefir/star.htm
Pinkerton's Reference Guide in Word format:
https://www.gog.com/forum/realms_of_ark ... ence_guide
GOG Forums for other reference:
https://www.gog.com/forum/realms_of_ark ... 1638656295

I've played the entire series, so feel free to go back through my posts in this topic if you want. I played Blade of Destiny in September-October of 2017. Star Trail in March-May of 2019. Currently playing Shadows over Riva starting November 15 of this year.

The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know.
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Reply 3623 of 4158, by thepirategamerboy12

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I'm playing through Dark Seed II right now on my Toshiba Tecra 550CDT laptop because the sound is messed up on my Pentium 233 MMX desktop for some reason. I admit that it does have some goofy moments, but I'm genuinely quite enjoying it. I really don't think it's a bad game at all. I first played the game probably over a decade ago now, but I really never made that much progress in it. The farthest I've gotten before now was where you literally just enter the dark world for the first time. That was bothering me lately, so now I've decided to finally try and beat it. Currently I believe I'm a little over half way through.

Reply 3624 of 4158, by newtmonkey

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I spent an enjoyable couple of hours randomly playing through some games installed on my dedicated DOS machine, mostly to test it after a scary incident where both the video card and CRT monitor went dead. The monitor was pretty old and had begun showing signs of aging deterioration (dim picture, geometry issues, drop outs), but the other night it refused to show any image whatsoever even with a known working video card. I swapped it temporarily with a 15" 4:3 LCD I have in storage specifically for testing; not a great display by any means, but not as bad as I thought it would be. I plan on replacing it with a larger 4:3 LCD soon, as I don't want to deal with the headaches (and backaches) of CRTs now.

Anyway, as I mentioned above, I wanted to stress test the PC after that trauma, and luckily everything is working fine currently. It was also a great opportunity to put the MP32L through its paces.

Here's what I played:

Commander Keen in Invasion of the Vorticons
A nostalgic favorite (the very first game I ever played on my first PC), and I was glad to see it still holds up. I actually prefer the more primitive graphics in this trilogy over the second set of games. It plays really well even just with a keyboard, and the jumping/movement feels great without being a total copy of Mario. If there's one complaint I have, it's that some of the harder levels almost require you to make a few death runs before learning how to complete them. Anyway, still lots of fun and I guess I am roughly halfway through the first episode.

Crystal Caves
Finally completed the first episode! I really like this game, and some of the levels have a bit of a puzzle game feel. I was surprised to see how fair this one is (much MUCH fairer than the similar Secret Agent), as I was able to clear most of the stages on my first go with careful exploration. I'm excited to move on to episode 2.

Hexen
I started over as a Fighter and completed the first level. I've tried many times to complete this one, but have never been able to make it very far. I'm always impressed with the first level and even the early parts of the second level (the first "hub" in the game). From there, I get frustrated pretty quickly—not so much with all the switches and buttons, but with trying to figure out what those switches and buttons do. Maybe I should just follow a walkthrough for this one.

Wing Commander
Currently stuck in the mission where you have to escort one Drayman to a jump point, then escort another Drayman back to the Tiger's Claw. I gave it a few tries but didn't get anywhere, so I'll need to sit down when I have a solid block of time and really focus on this one.

Ultima VI
I played this just to test out my MP32L. I still have yet to complete Ultima V (or Ultima II for that matter!), so it will be a while before I even consider playing this one for real. MP32L worked great, but I might prefer the OPL soundtrack for this game overall.

Reply 3629 of 4158, by newtmonkey

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Hexen
I made some good progress in the first hub area, and am really getting into this game. There's a lot to like about it. The melee combat works surprisingly well—it just works. The sound is also absolutely fantastic, this is a game you really need to play on some nice speakers. The music is very atmospheric and sounds great on a Sound Canvas, but I think I prefer the catchier soundtrack from Heretic. It's sometimes easy to forget this is running on the Doom engine, there's some really amazing level design here.

I haven't had much trouble with switch puzzles so far, so maybe they aren't as bad as I remembered. There's one annoying area in one of the subareas of the first hub where you have two switches that don't seem to do anything, but the trick is to open up the map and use the switches, as it shows you on the map exactly what they do.

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I mentioned earlier that I had to replace my beautiful CRT monitor with a cheap backup 4:3 LCD. The picture quality is pretty poor on this particular screen, but the LCD experience is not so bad for DOS gaming. I think I'm okay with this. Instead of trying to seek out a replacement CRT monitor, I ended up winning an auction for a Dell 2001FP 20" 4:3 LCD today for a decent price (3500 yen shipped), so I'm looking forward to that. I've also got a bid on a 2007FP, which (if I win it) I will keep in storage as a backup.

Reply 3630 of 4158, by liqmat

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Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance is finally out on the PC after 20 years and man I'm in. Loved it on the original Xbox. Finally going to finish it. Early Christmas present to myself. Picked up the DRM free version on GOG of course.

(っ•́。•́)♪♬

Reply 3631 of 4158, by kolderman

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liqmat wrote on 2021-12-18, 17:01:

Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance is finally out on the PC after 20 years and man I'm in. Loved it on the original Xbox. Finally going to finish it. Early Christmas present to myself. Picked up the DRM free version on GOG of course.

That's amazing. Wonder what it's like.

Reply 3632 of 4158, by clueless1

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Joakim wrote on 2021-12-16, 20:12:

Pandora Detective

😀

The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know.
OPL3 FM vs. Roland MT-32 vs. General MIDI DOS Game Comparison
Let's benchmark our systems with cache disabled
DOS PCI Graphics Card Benchmarks

Reply 3633 of 4158, by liqmat

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kolderman wrote on 2021-12-18, 17:37:
liqmat wrote on 2021-12-18, 17:01:

Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance is finally out on the PC after 20 years and man I'm in. Loved it on the original Xbox. Finally going to finish it. Early Christmas present to myself. Picked up the DRM free version on GOG of course.

That's amazing. Wonder what it's like.

It's a very addictive and enjoyable ARPG. Not too complex or deep., but a ton of fun. A casual dungeon crawler that was executed perfectly and you can just pick it up and go for short stints. Going to crack open my Hyperkin USB Duke controller for this one.

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(っ•́。•́)♪♬

Reply 3634 of 4158, by Shreddoc

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newtmonkey wrote on 2021-12-18, 16:48:

I mentioned earlier that I had to replace my beautiful CRT monitor with a cheap backup 4:3 LCD. The picture quality is pretty poor on this particular screen, but the LCD experience is not so bad for DOS gaming. I think I'm okay with this. Instead of trying to seek out a replacement CRT monitor, I ended up winning an auction for a Dell 2001FP 20" 4:3 LCD today for a decent price (3500 yen shipped), so I'm looking forward to that. I've also got a bid on a 2007FP, which (if I win it) I will keep in storage as a backup.

Internal lag (within the screen's circuitry) has been one of my theoretical concerns about gaming on older generation LCD tech. I don't mean the manufacturer's spec "Response Time", I mean real-world cumulative lag from the millisecond the signal hits the device, to the millsecond the image hits the actual panel. I don't personally (yet) have the science to back it up, but anecdotal comments made by people I respect have raised it as a valid concern common to most/all older-generation LCD tech.

Naturally, the style of game played by an individual greatly determines whether or not the above is even worth worrying about.

Reply 3635 of 4158, by appiah4

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I spent another five hours in Pathfinder: Kingmaker last night and I am finding it very difficult to get immersed in its kitchen sink Golarion setting. It's like Forgotten Realms with none of the flavor, and I find myself increasingly less invested in my own barony.. I may call it quits and give Torment: Tides of Numenera a go instead.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 3636 of 4158, by Sombrero

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appiah4 wrote on 2021-12-21, 07:40:

I may call it quits and give Torment: Tides of Numenera a go instead.

I hope you have a high tolerance for massive amounts of medicore writing, as a Planescape: Torment fan Numenera was a huge let down for me.

The setting is great and so is the focus on dialog instead of combat (for me it's the amount of trash enemies that ruins most of these top down RPG's), but I just don't think the writers were up for it. Can't substitute quality with quantity.

DOS/Win98SE: Pentium III 650MHz / Voodoo 3 3000 / Sound Blaster Audigy 2 / Orpheus
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Reply 3637 of 4158, by appiah4

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Sombrero wrote on 2021-12-21, 08:33:
appiah4 wrote on 2021-12-21, 07:40:

I may call it quits and give Torment: Tides of Numenera a go instead.

I hope you have a high tolerance for massive amounts of medicore writing, as a Planescape: Torment fan Numenera was a huge let down for me.

The setting is great and so is the focus on dialog instead of combat (for me it's the amount of trash enemies that ruins most of these top down RPG's), but I just don't think the writers were up for it. Can't substitute quality with quantity.

Uh.. Not good news 🙁 🤣. Let me try sticking with Kingmaker for a while more then, I guess..

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 3638 of 4158, by Joseph_Joestar

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Decided to replay Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time.

It feels great to finally play it with EAX3 enabled and AA forced in the driver settings. The graphics do show their age, but the gameplay is still superb and the music is as good as ever. I'm also noticing some nice EAX effects in areas which have water dripping from the ceiling and such. Good times.

PC#1: Pentium MMX 166 / Soyo SY-5BT / S3 Trio64V+ / Voodoo1 / OPTi 82C930 / AWE64 Gold / SC-155
PC#2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / Voodoo3 / SBLive / Vortex2
PC#3: Athlon64 3400+ / Asus K8V-MX / 5900XT / Audigy1
PC#4: i5-3550P / MSI Z77A-G43 / GTX 650Ti / X-Fi

Reply 3639 of 4158, by kolderman

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2021-12-22, 15:39:

Decided to replay Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time.

It feels great to finally play it with EAX3 enabled and AA forced in the driver settings. The graphics do show their age, but the gameplay is still superb and the music is as good as ever. I'm also noticing some nice EAX effects in areas which have water dripping from the ceiling and such. Good times.

I loved the puzzles in this game but the combat was so hard I had to abandon playing it. I really hope the remastered version coming has better difficulty control as I would love to play it through the whole way.