dorchadas: (Awake in the Night)
[personal profile] schoolpsychnerd doesn't like the dark. I do. That's the way of it. Left up to myself, I leave most if not all the lights in the apartment out, since the light filtering in from the alley outside through what few openings are left in the curtains we have up is enough for me to see by. Even at night, I usually don't bother to turn on the lights when I get up and move around. The apartment layout doesn't change, after all, and my night vision is pretty good. But sometimes, when I come home, the curtains are open and all the lights are on as [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd soaks up the light.  photo Dawn.png

The last couple nights, I've been reading a Let's Play of a Japanese RPG Maker game called Corpse Party. You can probably tell what kind of game it is from the title, and even though the links to the music and sound had vanished into the internet ether--sadly, since they're the highlight--I still found it creepy enough that before I went to sleep last night, I left the living room light on.

It would have made more sense when we lived in Japan, since we basically lived in a J-Horror house. We literally had an abandoned house right next to ours, plus another abandoned compound just down the street. We had steep stairs with no railing that a spirit could easily have pushed us to our deaths down.  photo japan001.gif But here, where three quarters of the apartment is always visible from any other point in it?

Well, it's the dark. [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd was worried that I would think less of her when she told me that she didn't like the dark, but I don't. The dark is scary! And who knows what could be out there. I can tell myself whatever I want, but my instincts are the instincts of a savannah-dwelling ape who stayed with the group or huddled by the fire and lived, while those who knew there was nothing out there were eaten by lions. So it took me a long time to fall asleep, and while I didn't have nightmares that I remember, I woke up an hour and a half before my alarm.

Maybe it's also that the game takes place in a school. I taught in a Japanese school, and I've been in other schools. They're all laid out pretty similarly, so it was easy for me to convert the minimal RPG Maker graphics in my mind into what a decayed, rotting school would actually look like. Maybe more effective than if the graphics had been more realistic.

Usually I'm fine in the dark, but it doesn't take much.
dorchadas: (Warlords of the Mushroom Kingdom)
I still remember the day that I first played Super Mario Bros. 3. My grandparents were visiting, one of the few times they came out to visit rather than having us come to them, and my grandmother had brought a copy of the game just released that year. I had already read all about it in Nintendo Power, and I think to this day it might be the present I have anticipated the most in my entire life. When she gave it to me I literally danced all around the room, yelling "Thank you!" over and over again. Then I sat down with the Nintendo, then plugged in at the TV in the living room, and booted the game up.

It was just as great as I was led to believe. I've never seen The Wizard, but I understand why Nintendo used it as an opportunity to market the game. People call that movie a feature-length commercial, but honestly, SMB3 deserves a commercial of that length. It is, to this day, my favorite Mario game.

 photo emot-iiam.gif

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
That was a wild ride. And in some ways, I don't have much to say because I said it all already.

Baldur's Gate II hasn't unseated Morrowind as my favorite game, but it came really close. Morrowind has its mythological exploration and interesting cultures, and Baldur's Gate II has the relationships between the PC and the other party members. This is where Bioware romances started, and while they were pretty basic in their original forms, with only four romanceable NPCs and only one for a female PC, the basic structure allowed a thousand mods to bloom. Some of them good, like Xan, some of them...less so.

I wish I had written down my time through Baldur's Gate as well, because that really would have provided a complete experience. That full zero-to-hero arc is part of what makes Baldur's Gate I and II so amazing to me. In the very beginning, 250 hours of gameplay ago  photo 58-2nsylaw.gif, Chiyo was a sheltered orphan in Candlekeep and nearly died when an assassin set upon her in the stables of her home. Years later, she fought off a powerful elven wizard in hell for custody of her soul, and this isn't even the end of her story. The Throne of Bhaal awaits. Eventually. I'm not diving into that quite yet.

In the end, I was mostly happy with my list of mods except for Sword Coast Stratagems. I had it set so that pre-buffing was only on NPCs that the designers thought would reasonably have buffed before engaging the PCs, but that was much more extensive than I would have expected. And there were egregious moments, like stripping all the party's buffs between phases in the final battle but still allowing Irenicus to autobuff. If I could go back, I'd keep the spell AI but turn off almost everything else, including the harder battles. Those are obviously designed for someone willing to use a lot of the exploits that I turned off, like allowing simulacrums and projected images to use quickslot items, or keeping Vhailor's Helm--which I modded out of the game--on the PC and then using simulacrum/time stop cheese to do a ton of damage to enemies during time stops. I said in my original post that I'm in favor of difficulty-increasing mods as long as it doesn't mean the AI cheats, and it fell down too much on the AI cheating for my taste. It was just annoying, reducing every battle to wizards stripping buffs from each other, as I mentioned in probably a dozen posts.

The stand-out mods for me were the banter pack, which increases the number of inter-party banters, and the Xan romance mod. I took so long in Chapters 2 and 3 that almost all of the non-Imoen banters were exhausted during the time, but without the banter mod I probably would have run out of banter in the first ten hours or so. And Xan's romance... Kawaii heart emoji photo heart_emoji_by_kawaiiprincess2-d51re77.gif It's cheesy in places, but I installed it as a parody of [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd and my relationship, with Chiyo as the eternally-chipper half and Xan as the doom and gloom half. I totally forgot the vampire dreams, which add a lot of context to Xan's eternal gloominess. It was mostly a well-written displace of understated emotion, with Xan's love coming out in little gestures unless Chiyo was under threat. The most memory part was probably when Chiyo picked a fight with a red dragon and Xan rushed over to her afterward.

If I could change anything, I'd go back and add more dialogue to the earlier sections. When I first started I would take notes while I played and do the write-ups later, so I had the gist of what was said rather than the specifics. Later on I would write the posts while I played, so I spent a lot of time transcribing dialogue. Some of that is because I was more interested in transcribing the text of plot-important dialogue rather than all the quests I was on, but part of it was wanting to more accurately preserve the experience. I might go back at some point and edit some earlier posts with the exact dialogue for more of the banter, since that's the best part.

The end of the game jumped right into Throne of Bhaal, but I'm not going to. I've been playing this game on and off for a year and a half, and the original reason I started, other than never having beaten it before, is I wanted to play the original before I played all the kickstarted isometric RPGs that were inspired by the old Infinity Engine games. And now I've done that, and I can go play Wasteland 2 and Pillars of Eternity with a clean conscience. Probably Wasteland II first. I need a break from fantasy worlds.

Forgotten Realms as a setting seems almost overwhelming, but Baldur's Gate II presents it in a very digestible format. It really dials into the world, with the extended period in a drow city, the random githyanki that show up wanting their silver sword, the society of the elves and their gods, and Irenicus's plan.

Now I can see why Irenicus is so well-loved as a villain. Some of it is David Warner's voice acting, spoiled extensively here, but some of it is that I have a soft spot for "become a god" plots. Also, it's the way that he plans ahead. Insinuating Yoshimo into the party--when I first played the game, I took Yoshimo willingly and I would have been caught completely be surprise by his betrayal--setting up Spellhold as a trap, making common cause with the drow, starting the guild war in Athkatla...while it seems that he's distant and not paying attention for much of the game, in retrospect it's obvious that all the major plots that aren't quests to go get money, like the aforementioned quest to deal with a dragon, are the results of his plots. There are so many RPGs where the villain doesn't seem to be doing much during the game, or where the "true villain" suddenly reveals itself at the end despite never previously showing up at all *cough*FFIV*cough* that seeing one where he's so well-integrated is a joy. And most of the time, when he talked, I wouldn't skip past his dialogue because I wanted to hear the voice acting.

What a fantastic game. It took me almost 150 hours, but it was time well spent and I'm looking forward to Throne of Bhaal...eventually.
dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
This is it. The final battle and the end of the game. After more than a year of playing--my first post shows that I started this back in June of last year--I finally finished one of the greatest WRPGs ever created.

But I'm getting a bit ahead of myself. This isn't my final thoughts, this is the story of how I stabbed Irenicus and everyone working for him right in the face. So let's get to that. Meanwhile, in hell...
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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
I know I've said that I was out of other things to do several times before, but this time I really mean it. All that's left is to eliminate Irenicus's minions in Suldanessellar, free the elves, and take the fight to Irenicus. I have a high-level party, I have powerful weapons and armor, and I'm ready. Let's do this.

But first, Moon Prism Power Makeup!
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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
It'd be nice if I would stop forgetting what I actually want to do in this game, but I think I've finally managed to check everything off the list. Barring a couple quests which I'm probably not going to finish, like the Jaheira quest with the Harpers, that requires a lot of randomly sleeping out in the wilderness and hoping it triggers. That's not to say I'm not going to try, but I won't feel so bad if I can't finish it off.

As part of my march to the endgame, I checked on area continuity and most of Shadows of Amn is inaccessible in Throne of Bhaal, including the Planar Sphere, where I stored all of my trophies. I could take it all to Watcher's Keep, but honestly, it's mostly pointless. With no way to display anything, there's no reason to save anything. Selling a giant chunk of magical weapons earns me almost 50,000 gold, and with that I head back to Cromwell. He combines the helm of charm protection and the helm of defense into the citadel helm, which goes on Minsc; mixes the staff of air, staff of earth, and staff of fire into the staff of elemental mastery, which I give to Aerie; and combines the golden girdle, the girdle of bluntness, and the girdle of piercing into the girdle of glory, which I give to Chiyo. And that spends almost all of my new money.
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dorchadas: (Green Sky)
I wanted to play this game pretty much from the moment I first saw it, but it took me a long time to get to it. I didn't buy it until months after it came out, and then I just didn't get around to it. I've been watching more TV lately with [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd now that we have some YouTube channels we like keeping current on and are watching more anime. I've been tinkering with some RPGs that I may or may not ever run. And there were all the other games I wanted to play. That playthrough of Baldur's Gate II that I'm currently 132 hours into and still not finished with. The Zelda games that I've decided I want to chron-game through as many as I can before the Switch comes out. Playing through Mass Effect III even though I hated Mass Effect II because I had to finish the trilogy and see if ME3 really was good for the first 90% and it was only the end that was terrible (spoiler: no, it's almost all terrible). You know how it is.

Wait, that's just me? Oh. Um.

You can't jump on the bubbles.

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
I've finished basically everything there is to do in the base game, unless there are some quests left added by mods that I don't know about. My quest log only has a few leftover bits from quests that weren't cleaned up because the triggers failed to fire or because I did things in the wrong order or because I jumped the gun and used the console to fix what I thought was broken and it turned out I was just in the wrong place, and only a couple of those. The next stop is Suldanessellar.

Except, well, since I have Throne of Bhaal installed, there's one place I can go first.
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dorchadas: (Zelda Dark Princess)
The Game Boy was kind of a weird time. There were a ton of puzzle games, exhaustively (and exhaustingly) covered in Jeremy Parish's Game Boy World series. There were the games that were brought over and then jammed into an existing series, like how 魔界塔士 SaGa (Makai Tōsho SaGa, “Spirit World Tower Warrior SaGa”) became Final Fantasy Legend. There were the ever-popular licensed platformers with almost nothing to do with their source material, like the Batman game where Batman ran around shooting all his enemies in the face. And there were the spinoffs from popular Nintendo franchises. Sometimes this turned out badly, like the first Castlevania Game Boy game where the developers had to add a ton of invincibility powerups as compensation for the incredibly cheap enemy attack patterns and level design. And sometimes it turned out well, like Link’s Awakening.

A couple of years ago, I went to a concert called Symphony of the Goddesses that features orchestral arrangements of Legend of Zelda songs--I first wrote about it here when I went to an earlier arrangement--and they had a focus on Link’s Awakening. In addition to gameplay sequences from the DX version of the game, they had anime sequences they inserted cutscene style, made specifically for the concert. It was listening to that, to the music from a game I had never played and watching Link work his way through the dungeons, that first got me interested in playing through Link’s Awakening. [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd and [ profile] slarnos’s advocating for it also helped, and that’s why I started this game so quickly after I finished the previous Zelda game.

And I like the name a bit better in Japanese, I admit. ゼルダの伝説 夢をみる島, “Legend of Zelda: The Isle that Dreams.”

I, too, write my name on the back of all my possessions.

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
On this, the thirtieth post in of my playthrough of Baldur's Gate II, I'm glad I could provide you with such a wonderful title.

I went to talk to Ricar before I ended the last session, but when I load up I remember that the Adventurer's Mart in Waukeen's Promenade sells a girdle of hill giant strength that I never bought because Chiyo has 18/00 Strength, Minsc has 19 Strength, and Jaheira had the gauntlets of ogre power so it was pointless to get them. Well, I rended down the gauntlets to make Crom Faeyr and Jaheira only has 15 Strength without any buffs, so I went back, sold some items off, and stuck the new belt on her. With that and her new weapon, I think she'll be much more effective than she has been.

And now, back to the lab.
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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
I wish that Baldur's Gate II had been able to do more with lighting, because that would have made the transition from the Underdark a lot more dramatic. And this point, Chiyo and her companions have spent days underground in total blackness. It'd be a moment like when the Lone Wanderer leaves Vault 101. Most of the party are elves or half-elves and can see in the dark--low-light vision for elves wasn't implemented until D&D 3.x's, so here they still have infravision--but Minsc and Imoen are not. Minsc probably would take everything in stride, but I'm surprised that there were no scenes of Imoen panicking. Captured by a vengeance-obsessed(?) archmage, imprisoned at the moment she thought she was freed, had her soul ripped out, and when she was rescued, dumped into a city of shark people and then into total blackness filled with what she knows are one of the most unpleasant cultures on Faerun? That's a lot to take in.

But no, I just get a chapter transition.
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dorchadas: (That is not dead...)
When I was young and had newly acquired an original Nintendo, I went shopping one day for a game with my parents. I fixated on a game--I no longer remember what it was--and told my father that I wanted it. He looked it at dubiously and suggested something different, a game I had never heard of called Maniac Mansion. I looked at the cover, with the house and the five misfits on the cover and the weird face in the background, and I turned it out. It didn't look exciting. It didn't have Mario or explosions or spaceships on it. Would I really like this? Despite his attempt to convince me, I rebuffed his suggestion and insisted on my initial choice.

Well, it turns out that maybe I should have gone with my father's choice. I spent years after playing adventure games on the PC and I don't even remember what game it was I wanted so badly. I've always remembered the game that my father suggested, though, and now that it's October and I'm looking for spooky games to play, I thought it was finally time that I sit down and do so.

Arson, murder, and jaywalking.

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dorchadas: (Awake in the Night)
I'm sorry, ever since I heard what Resident Evil was called in Asia I've thought it was a much better name. The Western name makes sense for the first game, and from what we've seen up the upcoming game it works for that one too, but Biohazard is obviously more fitting for the others.

This is one of the many games I played through in [ profile] uriany's basement, along with twenty runs of Chrono Trigger, parts of Resident Evil III, parts of Final Fantasy VIII, and others more numerous to count. I handled most of the action and he handled most of the planning, because I was better at the quick-time events and he was better about remembering where to go and where all the treasures were hidden--and he enjoys watching other people play video games more than I do. After we beat the game and unlocked Mercenaries, for hours at a time we'd trade off and try to get a higher score, spotting each other for chainsaw-wielding murder machines, suggesting routes, and just having a blast. I don't often miss the days before I moved to Japan, but those days just playing games together are one of the things I miss the most.

Ridiculous fishing.

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dorchadas: (Not the Tale)
As of an hour after sundown today, Yom Kippur ended for another year. Due to our local synagogue refusing to take our money for reasons we still haven't really been able to figure out, we didn't get tickets to services, so instead [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd and I watched a simulcasted Kol Nidre service put on by Nashuva last night. I took a few of my vacation days and took the rest of this week off, so I stayed home, and one of the things I did during Yom Kippur was read the book of Jonah, as is traditional.

As with most "why do you..." questions in Judaism, there are multiple answers as to why Jonah on Yom Kippur. The two I know are first that it shows that G-d is like the Terminator and will follow you to the ends of the earth such that there is no escaping his sight or knowledge, and second that it shows G-d's mercy because Ninevah was wicked but when Jonah delivered G-d's message, they sincerely repented and were spared, just as we hoped that sincerely repentance will ensure we are written into the Book of Life. I'm sure there are multi-page dissertations on the exact meaning of the withering tree at the end even though G-d spells out what he was trying to demonstrate exactly, but those I don't know.

One other thing I did, once the sun set, was play a game:

Spoiler: Not that great.

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dorchadas: (Broken Dream)
Back when video game magazines were a real thing that came every month, when they were the only real source of gaming news other than your friend's uncle who worked at Nintendo, one of my favorite magazines was PC Gamer. Not for the news contained within, necessarily, but for the demo disks that came with it. I got probably thousands of gaming hours of those demos--I remember waking up early every morning for a week while I was in middle school to play the demo of Master of Magic, Merlin against Kali--and one of the ones my sister and I both loved to play was Theme Hospital. There were only a couple levels and a small complement of the full list of diseases, but we extracted all the fun it had and then some. My sister can still quote lines from the game's announcer now, almost twenty years after she first played the game.

So when I saw that GOG had it available and that it was on sale, I snapped it up. I had never played the full game for any length of time and now was my chance, now that all the gaming wealth of the world is available to us. I was deciding between Frozen Synapse and Theme Hospital and did a bit of research on the internet. After finding a few comments about Frozen Synapse's more annoying levels, I decided to go with Theme Hospital. HLTB says it's about 24 hours, which is longish for a non-RPG but not a bad length of time, and about the same as Frozen Synapse. And playing it was so much fun when I was a child, right?

Well, dear reader, let me tell you--sometimes you should let a happy memory remain a memory.

The Gut Rot drug is certainly not 75% alcohol by volume.

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
I go to the Temple of Lolth, where Matron Ardulace is ecstatic that I managed to find the proper blood and that everything will be ready:
Matron Ardulace: "Ahhh...the Spider Queen smiles upon us. Our gamble does not go unwasted, daughter. Your champion has brought us the blood that we need!!"
Phaere: "Praise Lolth! The ritual may finally be begun! Despana will rule Ust Natha without question as the pre-eminent House!"
Matron Ardulace: "Indeed. But we must be cautious, daughter, ever cautious. The ritual may be disturbed before it is completed. The silver one may get desperate."
Phaere: "You are going to seal the city, matron?"
Matron Ardulace: "Yes. We cannot be disturbed from the outside. I shall go, now, and begin the proper preparations. This shall be a glorious day, indeed! Veldrin. You have done House Despana the greatest of services. You will be a female without equal...riches and slaves shall be yours. I shall see to it as soon as the ritual has been completed. Now is the time for you to rest, strong one...there is nothing more for you to prove to me."
Phaere: "Well, I am not done with her just yet. Veldrin...come to my personal apartments. I expect you to meet me there within the hour...this is not a request."
Well, that doesn't leave me with much of a choice, then.
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dorchadas: (Link to the Past Comic Master Sword)
This is my favorite Legend of Zelda game.

I think.

I know everyone thinks that Ocarina of Time is the best Zelda game and that it keeps winning polls as the best game of all time--with the notably infamous exception of last year at GameFAQs--but A Link to the Past has always been the game I went back to. My doubt is because of Wind Waker, but I won't be getting to that game for a while, so Link to the Past stands for the moment.

I never played it except briefly at friends' houses before emulation revealed the wonders of everything I missed by being a PC gamer, but I still got Nintendo Power through most of the Super Nintendo and part of the N64 era, and what I remember are the comics. Nintendo power serialized a comic based on A Link to the Past. Very loosely based--the constant vision, wings to fly into the desert, and balloon to get into Hyrule Castle had nothing to do with the game--but the game I imagined based on them was amazing. I still remember the story the tree tells Link about Ganondorf and the corruption of the Golden Land.
"Until then, I remain a fool in the shape of a tree."
Fortunately, though the game I eventually played was different, it was still excellent.

The graveyard is much more pastoral this time around.

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
So Phaere wants me to meet her immediately after arguing with Solaufein, and in the Female Fighter's Society where he won't be able to enter. I think I know where this is going, but since she only gave me an hour, I don't have any choice but to go to meet her immediately. When I do, she confirms my suspicions--after offhandedly saying she was thinking of having Chiyo tortured, she says flat-out that she and Solaufein are not on the best of terms and that she's tired of his insolence and allowing it to continue would be risking her position in the priesthood, but she can't kill him herself without risking war between their Houses. So she has come to a solution!

Have Chiyo do it.
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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
And so the party enters Ust Natha, stronghold of the dark elves.

Immediately on entering, I see a pair of githyanki standing around, a drow off to the side, and another drow berating a duergar slave for not properly working. When the duergar pleads for mercy, saying he hasn't eaten in a week, the drow beats him to death. Then a drow priestess walks up and asks what is happening, the drow says that the slave was misbehaving and was punished. The priestess snarls that the slave was her property, not his, and that the slave was well-trained and will be harder to replace than he will. Then she executes him, simply saying:
"I have other sons."
So that's the kind of society that Chiyo and the party has to infiltrate.
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dorchadas: (Not the Tale)
Other than Last Dream, I haven't played a JRPG in years. Not since I lived in Japan and finally played through the DS version of Final Fantasy IV, I think. Last Dream was fun, but it didn't entirely scratch my JRPG itch, maybe because it was so focused on recreating the experience of Final Fantasy I, before the idea of "JRPG" really took hold. The characters were only their classes and the story barely focused on them at all.

And then I started to notice articles about some RPG I'd never heard of called "Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky," like this one on US Gamer. And just recently, this one. And I heard friends mention it and how much they liked it. I put it on my wishlist about a week before Steam's summer sale hit and then it went on sale, and I bought it and booted it up to check it out. And then kept playing. And playing. And now, I have beaten it, and it was just as good as those articles led me to believe.

Let the troping begin.

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dorchadas: (Grue)
Ah, shareware. Source of so much of my gaming in the 90s. It's how I played Castle of the Winds, Jill of the Jungle, Solar Winds, Aethra Chronicles, Doom, and a ton of other titles, a lot of which were forgettable. This one, for some reason, stuck with me. Maybe because unlike the other ones I mentioned, I never managed to beat it the first time around. I clearly remember winning Castle of the Winds 1 and spending hours grinding on the last level available before I convinced my father to send away for volume 2, which meant I was grossly overleveled for it when I finally played it and easily blew through the game, but with Dare to Dream 1 I couldn't beat it except on easy mode. As such, it remained in my memory, in the space I'm wasting by dedicating it to games I haven't beaten yet, and and so I sat down with [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd to play through it once I found that the whole trilogy was available online.

Abandonware is in a tricky place legally, but I don't care that much when it comes to Dare to Dream. Unlike a lot of the titles available on GOG, where it just takes some tinkering with DOSBox to get them working fine even on up-to-date systems, Dare to Dream is a Windows game. A Windows 3.1 game, and good luck getting that to run. On Windows 7 it's possible with a virtual machine, but now that I have Windows 10 I'd have to install Windows 3.1 through DOSBox, emulating an OS while I'm emulating an OS, and even then I'd have to get the files from somewhere because it's not for sale anywhere anymore. So browser gaming it is.

Just like real life.

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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
As the party uses the magic infinitely-long rope to descend into the Underdark, I'm taken to another cutscene of Irenicus (spoilers after 18:25), this time talking to dark elves about a drow assault on the "temple of the false gods" before two surface elf prisoners who recognize Irenicus and address him as "Joneleth" are brought in. That's right, this whole thing is so he can get revenge on Suldanessellar. I'm not surprised that Irenicus would ally with the drow, since he's already allied with a vampire, but I am surprised the drow would ally with him, since he's a surface elf and a male at that. What is it that the Matron Mother is referring to that was so compelling?

After the cutscene, a new chapter begins:
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dorchadas: (Baldur's Gate II)
The party comes to in an air pocket in the depths of the sea, in the city of the sahuagin.

Sahuagin are kind of odd. D&D has a bunch of underwater fish-like humanoids--the sahuagin, of course, but also the locathah, kuo-toa, skum (note K), and some underwater variants of dryland monsters like merrow (aquatic ogres) and scrags (aquatic trolls). But for some reason, it's the sahuagin that have taken most of the popular D&D consciousness. They got their own book for AD&D 2e, called The Sea Devils, and even showed up in the first Final Fantasy game as SAHAG. As a child I thought it stood for "Sea hag," but the Japanese is サハギン, so the source is pretty obvious. Looking at Wikipedia tells me the sahuagin originally date from Blackmoor, so maybe they get first billing simply by virtue of being the oldest.

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dorchadas: (Not the Tale)
Last week was the 30th anniversary of the original Metroid, and I wrote about it. But this weekend I was looking to play something short as a break from the multiple sprawling dozens-of-hours RPGs that I'm working my way through, and while I originally was deciding between Kirby's Adventure, Super Mario Brothers III, and Slain: Escape from Hell, I realized that I hadn't yet played Zero Mission. I've heard multiple times that it's good enough to make the original Metroid completely obsolete and I've been meaning to play it for years at this point. What better time than in honor of the 30th anniversary? And now that AM2R is out--DMCAed, but the internet never forgets and it very specifically did not get C&Ded, so the author is still updating--I Wanted to play the first game before I played that.

I don't want to bury the lede, so I'll say that everything I heard about Zero Mission is right. It really does make the original obsolete.


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