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Gold Box games

Dev6Dev6 Member Posts: 707
edited November 2017 in Off-Topic
Hey guys,

I recently noticed the old AD&D Gold Box games are on GOG, are they worth playing nowadays?
I never played them when I was younger, so nostalgia isn't a factor here.
How do they hold up gameplay-wise and story-wise? Should I try them out or just disregard them as the product of a time long gone?

EDIT: I guess I might as well ask, if they are worth playing, then which one should I try first?

typo_tillybrix

Comments

  • FardragonFardragon Member Posts: 4,511
    edited November 2017
    Avoid Hillsfar. Candidate for worst game ever published.

  • AmmarAmmar Member Posts: 973
    Absolutely! Very faithful implementation of 1st Edition AD&D rules, and while the graphics are obviously very outdated, I think they are abstract enough to be tolerable. Maybe try using the Gold Box Companion for convenience - especially when playing Pool of Radiance, which has no "fix" command.

    I would recommend starting either with Pool of Radiance [Forgotten Realms] or Champions of Krynn [Dragonlance] - the gold box combat is best (IMO) in the lower to medium levels. Both are the start of series, where you can import your party into the next game.

    I think both series are decent in terms of story, and the tactical combat system is very good and worth checking out. When I first started BG, I missed the Gold Box combat system. Due to it being turn and tile based, you can actually *aim* Lightning Bolts (the wand reflection thing is also in).

    Let me know if you want some starter tips.

    BTW, Hillsfar is not Gold Box.

    Dev6Mathsorcerertypo_tillybrix
  • MathsorcererMathsorcerer Member Posts: 2,872
    I doubt they will hold up for either gameplay or story but if you want to know what we had game-wise in the late 1980s/early 1990s then you should try them out. Pool of Radiance, the first Gold Box game, is definitely old school--the code for extra character classes like paladin and ranger exists but they weren't implemented, so you are limited to straight fighter, cleric, thief, or magic-user (and multiclassing for non-human characters).

    I had Hillsfar and played it all the way through a couple of times. I don't know if I would call it "worst game ever published" but it wasn't that great.

    I don't have it available at this time so I will find the links for the modding forum for the Gold Box games. You can find all sorts of information about them there, as well as a link to GoldBox Explorer.

    Dev6typo_tilly
  • PokotaPokota Member Posts: 589
    I'm not sure if I would suggest playing through or avoiding HEIRS.DSN, the default "campaign" that comes with Unlimited Adventures.

    Dev6
  • WarChiefZekeWarChiefZeke Member Posts: 1,863
    edited November 2017
    I enjoyed Champions of Krynn despite its ungodly encounter rate but that might just be because I find some of the rules, like Knighthoods and Red/White robe mages to be refreshing.

    MathsorcererDev6
  • BelanosBelanos Member Posts: 968

    I enjoyed Champions of Krynn despite its ungodly encounter rate but that might just be because I find some of the rules, like Knighthoods and Red/White robe mages to be refreshing.

    The thing I liked most about that series was the moon cycles, which determined the effectiveness of certain spells.

    Dev6
  • MathsorcererMathsorcerer Member Posts: 2,872
    The other drawback to the Krynn games was your lack of being able to play evil alignments. Of course, if you accept the house rules for Krynn then your evil characters would not have been fighting back because they would have been helping the bad guys.

    Anyway...I found the link I mentioned earlier. The Gold Box Explorer is in the Hacke's Hideout forum, in a sticky post at the top.

    Dev6
  • GusindaGusinda Member Posts: 1,588
    edited November 2017
    @Dev6, If you do go ahead and play, then I recommend using the Goldbox Companion. It provides an Automapping function (unless you want to get the graph paper out), gives you access to the Paladin and Ranger classes, & keeps track of your saved games etc... You just need to play the games in a Window instead of full screen (looks better as well). I can pass over my config for DOSBox if you want but it is easy enough. In the config, fullscreen=false (window mode) and scaler=normal3x (3 times the normal screen size) are pretty much the only changes I made...


    Start with Pool of Radiance (unless you are a hugh Dragonlance fan). It was written first and sets the standard for the future games... The future games had some changes to the engine which you will notice (or miss) if you were to step backwards. You also continue developing your characters on in the later games...

    Gus

    Dev6Mathsorcerer
  • Dev6Dev6 Member Posts: 707
    Thanks everyone for the answers :D I'll try out Pool of Radiance once I finish my current run of BG (which might take a while lol).

  • FardragonFardragon Member Posts: 4,511
    Buck Rodgers games? Are they available anywhere?

  • AmmarAmmar Member Posts: 973
    For Pool of Radiance, two starting pointers:

    • Multiclass characters are quite powerful (PoR has a level cap, not an XP cap), but if you transfer them into later game they will hit the racial level caps quite early. Still, having some and switching them out later is not a good idea.
    • Hiring a Hero to accompany you in the training area is a good option to help you out at the beginning.

    Dev6MathsorcererGusindaAnduin
  • AnduinAnduin Member Posts: 5,745
    Dev6 said:

    Hey guys,

    I recently noticed the old AD&D Gold Box games are on GOG, are they worth playing nowadays?
    I never played them when I was younger, so nostalgia isn't a factor here.
    How do they hold up gameplay-wise and story-wise? Should I try them out or just disregard them as the product of a time long gone?

    EDIT: I guess I might as well ask, if they are worth playing, then which one should I try first?

    I'm doing the challenges of challenges. A play through of all the forgotten realms computer games.

    https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/comment/918053#Comment_918053

    I found them to be very playable. Once you get past the limitations of having to scroll through everything using the number 1...

    Hillsfar is not a goldbox game and is very playable once you know secret rooms can only be found on the left wall by bumping into them constantly...

    Although once you know that you will finish it in an hour... People who do not know this think the game is impossible to complete. (I do not class this info as a spoiler, indeed it is an unspoiler)

    On playing the gold box games... I see the BGs in such a different light. The similarities are shocking...

    Dev6
  • GusindaGusinda Member Posts: 1,588
    @Fardragon - You can get both Buck Rogers games from here or here. Both are considered abandonware... You just need to set them up inside Dosbox.

    Gus

    Dev6FardragonMathsorcerertypo_tilly
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