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Posts Tagged ‘RPG’

Jon Irenicus mosaic

Due to Summer boredom and a high resolution mod I started replaying Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn. It also popped to my mind because of the recent Gaming made me series on Rock, Paper, Shotgun(if you have even a passing interest in PC-games this is your site). The contributors to the site and also some game developers wrote about games that had a big effect on them. Naturally I started thinking what games have influenced me. Baldur’s Gate II would have to be the game that stands brightest in that respect.

Now BG 2 is the first RPG I ever played and boy did I play a lot of this game. I got this as a present from my grandmother. I had no idea what Dungeons & Dragons even was, but I read a very short review somewhere about it and I wanted the game. When I started I had to learn from ground up how to play the game. I had no idea there were dice-rolls going on behind the game. I remember I was stuck in the third room because I didn’t notice an entryway further into the dungeon. If you’re not familiar with BG 2 it begins with your character and his friends in a dungeon where a very powerful mage named Jon Irenicus is keeping them and conducting experiments on all of you. Then the mage’s complex is attacked and you need to escape. Playing the game was very hard, but I soon caught on and even finished the game finally, quite the feat for 12-year-old me and I’m still proud of myself.

BG 2 taught me to expect a lot from games in terms of plot, characters, music and setting. I always compare games to my childhood experience of BG 2 and most come up short. The game got rave reviews when it came out, but the way it fueled my imagination was rather magnificent. I still know most of the lines, at least the voice-acted ones, by heart. Because of Baldur’s Gate I came to expect a great story from all games I play and I still look for that in games. Its hard to write about this game since its stock full of content and wonderful characters. If you like fantasy and RPG:s its definitely worth checking into.

Djinni's room

Playing it now I still find the game very pretty. Its as if it hasn’t aged a day since I played it as a child. It still looks beatiful. The first bit of the game where you escape from the dungeon is definitely the worst part. It might be that I’ve played through it so many times, but its become very boring. Its not until you’ve escaped that the enormity that is BG2 strikes you. The amount of things to do is unbelievable, and its all very well presented also. No newer cRPG has had this amount of side-quests. As a kid I actually tried to find every damn one of them. With no Internet that was quite the task.

What is it then that I got from spending all that time as a kid playing this game? I’m not quite sure, but perhaps from this game comes my love for playing in the first place. The decision making of the dialogue trees, the combat with its fantastic spells, exploring new areas of the game but first and foremost finding out what the creepy Jon Irenicus is planning and seeing how the story is going to end. I hope games to come can create a similar wonder that is Baldur’s Gate 2. I’ll have to see if I’ll do a similar thing on Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, another game (a lot shorter, thank god) everyone should play in my opinion. You readers have any games that had a profound effect on you?

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In a three part series for Eurogamer, John Walker writes about playing KOTOR, the Star Wars RPG, and picking the choices that cause the most evil. It’s a good read, at least if you’ve played the game. Part 1, Part 2, and part 3 here. It’s an interesting adventure to an old game and I think shows what made KOTOR such a wonderful game.

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