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Gold Box engine games

m7600m7600 Member Posts: 260
Anyone ever played the Gold Box engine games? By modern standards, they are insanely difficult. Right now I'm playing Death Knights of Krynn.

Comments

  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,695
    It's not their difficulty that's the problem, it's trying to adjust to the interface and keyboard commands (especially true of Pool of Radiance and Curse of the Azure Bonds). Even with the Gold Box Companion mod (which is essential in my book) I respect them more than I enjoy actually playing them.

    IseweinWarChiefZeke
  • m7600m7600 Member Posts: 260
    Yeah, Pool and Azure Bonds lacked a mouse, but they added that feature in subsequent titles. Regarding the difficulty level, I'd disagree. In The Dark Queen of Krynn, your first combat is against several blue and green dragons. Unless you import characters from the previous game, this battle is almost impossible. At least I could never beat those dragons with a new party.

  • AmmarAmmar Member Posts: 1,179
    Pools of Darkness and Dark Queen are a slog and work best with imported magic items and modified character stats.

    The series as a whole works best at low level. With dragon breaths, drain level, Beholder rays and enemies casting Fireball a lot comes down to winning initiative.

    I have zero complaints about the interface after they introduced Fix. It is fast and you reach everything with a minimum number of keypresses. I think this kind of game ages fairly well

    Isewein
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,695
    edited November 2020
    Ammar wrote: »
    Pools of Darkness and Dark Queen are a slog and work best with imported magic items and modified character stats.

    The series as a whole works best at low level. With dragon breaths, drain level, Beholder rays and enemies casting Fireball a lot comes down to winning initiative.

    I have zero complaints about the interface after they introduced Fix. It is fast and you reach everything with a minimum number of keypresses. I think this kind of game ages fairly well

    I have to agree that facing literal hordes of dragons and beholders is sorta ridiculous. The massive amounts of enemies works alright in Might and Magic and Bard's Tale. It doesn't translate all that well to tactical encounters. The high-level games in this series treat Dracoliches like they are Xaurips

  • PokotaPokota Member Posts: 807
    Most of my experience with Gold Box is actually Forgotten Realms Unlimited Adventures, specifically the default module "Heirs to Skull Crag." I've been wanting to go through the Pools series at least, but that requires note-taking to the extent that I would quickly become bored.

  • KamigoroshiKamigoroshi Member Posts: 5,876
    For those interested: Low Magic Age has been hailed as a spiritual successor of the classic Gold Box games. While it's not really "new" anymore, (given that it is an Early Access title from 2017), Low Magic Age still receives periodical updates. The September update even introduced the Sorcerer class. Doesn't hurt that it is currently 60% off on steam.

    ProontIsewein
  • WarChiefZekeWarChiefZeke Member Posts: 2,625
    edited November 2020
    I enjoy some of the early DnD dungeon crawlers more than the Gold Box games, things like Dungeon Hack or Menzoberanzan.

    That being said, I find them very enjoyable. They are just a major investment in time and attention. You have to refer to the out of game journal entries during dialogue, battles are as brutal in low levels as any DnD campaign and take quite a bit of time, but once you get the ball rolling it is a really good time.

    The two Dark Sun games remain the most playable and enjoyable out of all the SSI era DnD games. You can see how they influenced the later Baldurs Gate games.

    ilduderinoPokotaZaxares
  • ilduderinoilduderino Member Posts: 746
    Menzoberanzan is good fun, I remember knowing nothing about it, getting it as part of a D&D games set a few years after release and thinking wow this is amazing, also Eye of the Beholder (though the third one is a let down). Will hopefully play the Ravenloft games that share the Menzo engine one of these days.

    WarChiefZeke
  • m7600m7600 Member Posts: 260
    Honestly, I expected more from Menzoberranzan. I get that they were trying to cash in on the Drizzt craze, and there's nothing wrong with that per se. It's just that the product that they offered didn't exactly live up to what a Salvatore fan would expect.

  • ZaxaresZaxares Member Posts: 1,234
    Menzoberranzan is a fun enough adventure, I think. There's a decently intriguing storyline to be found that ties in with the Salvatore novels, and there's a fairly diverse array of monsters to challenge you. The trouble with the SSI D&D games is that, outside of a few exceptions, Might definitely overshadows Magic. Generally speaking you're better off with buffing spells to enhance your frontline fighters and then just chop through everything. There's not really the same kind of tactical approach to spellcasting as you see in later D&D games like Baldur's Gate.

    I still love the SSI Ravenloft games though. They managed to capture the "feel" of Ravenloft quite well, especially the first game, Strahd's Possession. Magic is also much more valuable in these games too, because there are a LOT of dangerous undead monsters that you do NOT want to engage in melee combat with (unless you're willing to do a lot of save scumming), because remember this was back in the days when Level Drain was automatic (no saving throw) and permanent (no spells like Restoration existed to remove negative levels). You might be a 9th level Fighter, but get surrounded by 3 Wights in a barrow and you could be dead in 3 rounds. :P

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