897BCE: The dragons led their combined armies to attack Sheerzen. They were constantly outflanked on their journey there. The Heroes always seemed to be one step ahead of the dragon-led army. Unknown to the dragons, this was due to the power of the Orbs. Anyone holding an Orb could detect the movement of nearby dragons, allowing perfect scouting of the draconic forces. The thrust towards Sheerzen was outmaneuvered and defeated. Continue reading →
968BCE: The dragon monarchs began exploiting the labor of their subjects to build grand palaces and monuments. The bronze dragon siblings, Rilopenaril and Langudina, disliked these vain practices. They used their power to provide patronage for adventurers that aided the bronze dragons’ subjects on a personal level. Rilopenaril and Langudina’s taxes were minimal compared to their cousins. The only exceptions were mithral, adamantine, and lead, which were taxed at enormous percentages, all but denying those metals to the common inhabitant of Apollo’s Plains.
967BCE: The dragons inbred with their subjects and in many cases, the local wildlife. Draconic half-breeds became relatively common.
964BCE: An adventuring group caught the eye of Rilopenaril and Langudina. The adventurers had kept the bronze dragons’ more civilized subjects safe from a raiding band of white dragon hybrid ogres. The adventurers were honored and named the Bronze Chords. Their names were Brelfagar the Dwarven fighter, Shoree the Human paladin, Sunrise the Elven wizard, and Jeffery the Human cleric of the Muses.
963BCE: Rilopenaril tasked the Bronze Chords with gathering all the people of Apollo’s Plains in one central location, the sacred Hill of Apollo where the draconic pair made their lair. He wished to make an announcement to his subjects. Langudina was oddly absent when Rilopenaril gave this task to the Bronze Chords.
959BCE: After many years the Bronze Chords completed their task. They traveled the length and breadth of Apollo’s Plains and slew many beasts and monsters to ensure safe travel for the weaker subjects of the bronze dragons. All the people of the Plains packed up their belongings as directed and migrated to Apollo’s Hill.
958BCE: All the people of Apollo’s Plains came together as one. Rilopenaril announced that they would no longer live separately. They would live together in a new home of his design. Rilopenaril intoned a divine spell and a magnificent structure rose from the crown of Apollo’s Hill. The stone castle rose a thousand feet into the air reinforced by adamantine and lead. The town of Sheerzen came into existence in less time than it takes to bake a cake. All those present were invited to inhabit the castle or return to their villages as they wished. Rilopenaril named the Bronze Chords the leaders of the new community.
957BCE: Rilopenaril mated with the Bronze Chords and some of their existing children, infusing their bloodlines with draconic power. Langudina rarely emerged from her home beneath the Hill.
In the game a wealthy socialite turns to the Cthuluian mysteries for entertainment and he unlocks horror beneath his mansion. The evil spreads until the entire countryside is corrupted by monsters, cultists, and brigands.
The player controls various groups of adventurers hired by the caretaker of the mansion to rid it of the abominations that inhabit it.
The game is a fairly typical turn-based RPG. Positioning of your party members is also important, but there’s nothing new there.
The new mechanic in Darkest Dungeon is the stress bar.
If you’ve read the short stories by HP Lovecraft that inspired this game, then you’re familiar with how the characters go insane when exposed to otherworldy horrors. Well, the same thing happens to the adventurers you control in Darkest Dungeon.
Getting hit really hard by monsters drives your party crazy. When the monsters do creepy things your party goes crazy. When the torchlight starts burning low your party goes crazy.
All that crazy is measured by the stress bar which goes from 0-100. 0 is fine, 100 is insane.
There’s other cool stuff too. Every class gets special attacks and you can name all your characters, like Snoop Dog in that picture down there.
In between adventures your party can rest and recuperate from all that craziness. There’s plenty of buildings to upgrade in the little town you stay in and the gold you bring back can be spent to improve your adventurers’ abilities for future dungeon raids.
And best of all, the adventurers talk throughout the whole game. Here’s your boss, the caretaker, describing one of his favorite places to visit in town.
I like to gauge entertainment on a ratio of hours of entertainment to money spent ratio. Movies are $10 to 2 hour ratio. Darkest Dungeon is $20 to… probably about 100 hours? That makes it 25 times as much entertainment value as a movie! Not necessarily as much fun packed into two hours, but over time it’ll appreciate into something you can really enjoy.
One of my favorite websites, Samurai War, has returned from the banished depths of the internet!
Samurai War is my favorite website mostly for nostalgia reasons.
When I first started going on the internet in the late 1990s I spent most/all of my time at the GameFAQs boards learning more about the games I was playing at the time.
GameFAQs has a series of discussion boards devoted to every video game ever.
When you post on the boards you have the option of every single one of your posts being followed by a signature. The signature can really be anything and often people would put links in their signatures.
The links could go to the user’s website or to something more fun like a browser based game.
Samurai War was one of those browser based games that I grew to love.
The concept of Samurai War is pretty simple. You’re a samurai/ronin in ancient Japan. Your goal is to become the most powerful samurai in Japan. Maybe you want to be in charge of a noble house or maybe you want to remain a ronin, either way the goal of the game is to advance your character’s stats.
Stats are advanced through training, but you have to pay for training. Where does money come from then?
Well if you click the link above to Samurai War’s webpage you’ll be introduced to the first method of earning money in Samurai War.
The second method is by engaging people in combat. The winner takes whatever is in the loser’s wallet. In the modern world we call this mugging, but in Samurai War it is called honorable combat.
Of course if you’re just stealing money from other players then no new money enters the system. The game fixes that by having a NPCs spawn every few minutes for you to rob and murde- I mean defeat honorably.
The game is extremely minimalist beyond that. It’s mostly text. There are a few images on the site but nothing stunning. There are zero animations in the game.
So with so little to offer in this game, why do I love it so much?
I’d have to say it’s mostly the friendly competitive atmosphere that developed between the me and the other people were playing it.
After you’ve got a decent amount of money you have to rush to use it to train before someone else in the game sees you with a wallet that big and decides to “honorably take it from you.”
And if they kill you after you’ve already used the money, then you get to laugh at them.
It’s a great game and if you’re into little time wasters you should take a look at Samurai War.