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RPG Backtrack: Episode 125 - How Many Dragons in an Age?

JuMeSynJuMeSyn Code: KirinAdministrators
edited August 2014 in Latest Updates
The start of BioWare's ongoing series brought a lot of thoughts to the surface. Some are profound and challenging, others lewd and depraved, with plenty occupying some kind of middle ground in this episode.
Icky, icky Darkspawn carnage.
It's not what he's eating, but what's eating him that makes it ... sort of interesting.


  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed Full Members
    edited August 2014
    Icky and depraved? Man, I totally forgot to talk about the Broodmother.
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • TexsideTexside Member Full Members
    edited August 2014
    Aw, man, I fell behind! Went on vacation and life got crazy, and my podcast listening suffered for it. But the cat pee segment had me in stitches in the middle of my office.

    I think the part that got me with DA:O -- and maybe none of y'all had this issue, but it definitely bugged me -- was the lack of voice acting combined with the complete lack of expression from the protagonist. It often looked like people pouring their hearts out to a stony-faced deaf-mute that looked on, unblinking and unfeeling, while people talked to them. This was really weird and pulled me out of the experience with the game.

    Now, the Dark Spire talk got me thinking. I never played it -- and, y'know, not gonna after hearing this -- but I remember Mike or Phil saying that the weird thing was how it could be good, then could be really bad. I think this is actually worse than a purely bad experience, in some ways. When you want to love something, when it does some things right, and then it does some things really wrong, it hurts more. It's like having a juicy, delicious steak but periodically getting kicked in the throat by a donkey: it's worse than just getting kicked in the throat by a donkey, because you can't even enjoy the steak.

    In related news, I think I'm getting a cold and running a fever.

    Edited to add: congrats on the wedding, guys! Hope y'all had a blast.
  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited August 2014
    I love that analogy, Tex. Enjoying a juicy steak while getting kicked in the throat by a donkey. LOL. That's Dark Spire.
    Co-Host on RPGBacktrack. Follow me on Twitter and sub to my blog if you would like!
  • ghaleon80ghaleon80 Pass Christian, Mississippi Full Members
    edited August 2014
    The thing I loved about Dragon Age is I actually cared about my party because of all the interaction. Whether I hated them or loved them I at least didn't forget they exist like some other RPGs.
  • VictarVictar Member Full Members
    edited August 2014
    I didn't know you guys had anything positive to say about Dark Spire at all.

    The one time I tried playing it, I was intrigued by the training quest of the very beginning, in which you prove yourself by killing your questgiver... who is then resurrected... and he mostly seems ok, but apparently he's been resurrected so many times it's done some brain damage... poor guy.

    Then my characters starting getting 1 hit point per level up, and yeah. I shelved the game.

    I am beginning to consider selling my copy rather than playing it; there's just too many other good games out there.
  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited August 2014
    Hehehe...I hear ya.

    I would say that if you're the type of gamer that likes to keep just those games that you actually intend to beat (or play through), then definitely, sell this one. You can get a good price for it and get something that you WILL play.

    If you're a collector, like me, it depends on what you collect, and why. Generally, my collection consists of the best games of the genres I enjoy, games from franchises I adore, and games from genres I like with original elements. That last criteria keeps Dark Spire in my collection, by a thread. There's no other DS game (and maybe no other game) that captures the atmosphere of old DOS RPGs so well. The artwork and sound, in both the 8 bit and regular modes, are done so well. When I saw negative armor classes, venetian spell casting system, etc., the old school D&D nerd in me nearly popped. Unfortunately, as I mention in the podcast, they also take (and make up a few) the more negative elements of that era and actually accentuate them. Good old school remakes highlight what make those games good and downplay the more frustrating aspects (see: Shovel Knight or Etrian Odyessey III). Someone forgot to tell the Dark Spire guys. Still, it barely holds on in my collection... and I pop it in once in a while, for those good elements. Then I die a few times, hit a dark room or run into a puzzle, and I get it out of my system for another decade :P
    Co-Host on RPGBacktrack. Follow me on Twitter and sub to my blog if you would like!
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