There are always some games in the back of my mind, poking me for attention, wanting me to give them a new playthrough. Of these games there are a few that I have picked out, really hoping I get some time this year to play them. They are no short games, so I might not finish them, but hopefully I get to play them enough to give an insightful report about them and see how they stand in today’s gaming environment.
X-com: Terror from the deep
I have always preferred X-com: Terror from the deep to Ufo: Enemy unknown, even though they are virtually similar games, just with different game worlds and outsets where the former mostly take place in deep water or on large ships while the latter is largely set on ground. My preference for X-com is probably just incidental, since I l played that game before trying Ufo.
I like X-com much due to the strategy part, and it is a kind of slow strategy that works very well in this game. You can think how long you want before you make your move and all moves can be calculated into smallest details. All that apart, each move is anyway a thrill to execute, since the aliens are mostly very well hidden in the environment and you never know when and where they will appear. Another part of this game that I like a lot is the research. Whenever you find some alien artifact you can start researching on it, to either integrate the alien technology into your own technology or use it to enhance your equipment, weapons and knowledge or you can get insight into the aliens’ weaknesses and equipment hence using it to strengthen yourself when facing the aliens.
I guess, a little bit prejudicial, that this game can tend to be quite slow and almost boring for some gamers now-days, but I still hold it at one of the best strategy games, highly deserving a new replay!
Ultima VII: The Black Gate
This game has to be the biggest I have ever played, or at least that I played for longest time. When I got it around 1993 there were many rivaling, great games wanting my attention and time such as Doom, Day of the Tentacle, Lands of Lore, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and many more, but Ultima VII was so huge and intriguing that it made me come back to it many times. I think I played it for around a year, to and fro, until I eventually finished it!
What makes this game so great is the free, roaming style mixed with all the investigation you have to do. The “premise” of Ultima VII is the hideous murder of the town’s blacksmith and you, as the main character called Avatar, are asked by the mayor to look into it. The game has an open, free style, where interaction with most things and people is encouraged and many times needed. The story, from the murder to the larger problems of whole Britannia (the game world) is very rich and deep, making it difficult to tear yourself from this game.
Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn
For me, this is (or were, let’s see how it stands up now 12 years later) the best role-playing game ever! It has everything: a lengthy and quite deep story, intriguing characters, a wonderful and “living” world, and a group of adventurers under your command!
As with most RPGs it also has a lot of stats that you can go crazy about, trying to maximize them in all and any circumstance and event. There is a huge amount of equipment, armor, weapons, spells and other features that influence you and your group of adventurers’ chance of success. The balance of all these features is very well implemented in Baldur’s Gate II, which make it a “just-one-more-time” game where you really want to collect enough experience to reach next level or gather enough money to be able to buy that enchanted sword.
The story of the game is very good, which make it even harder to stop playing. Baldur’s Gate II is a game I am really looking forward to play again, but I am afraid that it will engulf so much of my free time!
Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
A wonderful adventure and challenge! Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis gave me and my friends a lot of extremely difficult puzzles and challenges to solve, and they were accompanied by a nicely drawn game world with intriguing vistas, a few cool action sequences and a lot of witty remarks, just like the old Indiana Jones movies (I haven’t seen them in a while though, but that is how I remember them).
I remember calling my class mates and friends, so we together could put our heads together and perhaps come up with a clue how to solve the hard quizzes and mysteries the game presents. Let’s see how many of the old solutions I remember when playing it again. I refuse to use a walkthrough!