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Roots


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DRAKEFYRE

 

Roots

 

What a great scenario. This is one of the first 'fun' scenarios that I've played in a long time. The combats weren't too difficult - the bloodroot time limit and deciding which books were worth reading to conserve time was a harder decision. The final battle was a doozy, though, especially without Nikolai. I <3 poison.

 

There were some strange moments with sound effects that I thought were misplaced, and I was very frustrated that I kept dying without being able to use the bloodroot until I figured out that I had to get kicked out of the Guild first. Also, potions weigh a lot! Probably strategic from Thuryl to make us pick and choose, but it hurts at the end when I'd used all three Bloodroots before making it to the second floor of the Guild.

 

Still, a very fun and engaging scenario. This is the kind of backwards story and moral dilemma that people so often attempt and fail, but Thuryl's gotten it right. Oh, and I guessed who attacked Jessica as soon as I heard that it happened, so that wasn't a big shock or surprise (but nice try).

 

Good

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MILU K

 

Good

 

The premade "party" doesn't work on my mac. It gets quickly frustrating to make singleton "parties", because it takes time.

 

Another, much bigger complaint: Too hard battles. In the end, they get a little easier, except for the final one. I cheated as much as I could. (Though I couldn't affect statistics etc. due to a particular character editor bug)

 

Yet another complaint about the dark mazes. They are a traditional and a bit boring type of maze, also boring this time despite the variation.

 

Otherwise, the scenario feels in many ways very fresh (like Areni), and very good. A very good atmosphere and involving plot. Using alchemy was nice and it seemed to be balanced. I especially liked the fact that all friendly characters talk.

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JEWELS

 

I had trouble playing this scenario with what I was given but I hardly ever mess with alchemy unless it's to make money off it. So it stretched my player ability and I had to embrace a part of the game that I usually ignore. I died more then a few times both in combat and in running out of time. The storyline was a little confusing and I found that most 'hints' within the game were not enough to turn on my lightbulb. I doubt I would have been able to finish at all if it weren't for the included hintsheet. I also found it impossible to find enough time to go back home to study all the spells that were given/needed. This game is for very good players who want a real challenge. A beginner player would be left scratching their head and the intermediate player would have much difficulty playing through.

 

That said: techincally sound, bug free, good use of custom graphics, original(as far as I know) storyline.

 

It's a good scenario. Just too hard for my taste.

 

Good

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THE CREATOR

 

Amnesia is perhaps an overused plot device, but we haven't really seen it used in Blades before, and it was justified, and it was done really well. Technical brilliance, a well-paced and enthralling storyline and nice, tough combat make Roots great. Little touches like Nikolai and the butcher make it awesome.

 

BEST

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CORWIN

 

Amazing

 

Best

Gripping plot. Anyone here play planscape torment? It's one of my favorite games ever, and that dark atmosphere where you play a guy who as a former life(or close enough) was not an admirable person and now getting another chance is something I love.

 

-.3 because the Necronomicon really should have given you summon demon and not what it does. (I Read lovecraft too!)

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WONKO THE SANE

 

Good

 

Really, really good. In the same style as Emulations; towns-only, driven adventure where you play a character that has his own emotions and drives. Also similar to Revenge; you can do whatever you like but are forced to continue the main storyline by timers with penalties attached (did that make sense at all?). It accomplishes this better, though, because you actually have an inkling of what to do when not dreaming.

 

Some sequences were incredible: the dream where Raine drugs you and talks about his childhood as you fall unconscious is amazing. So were the elementals. And the whole concept: you were evil, now you have a chance to start again, is brilliant.

 

There's only two bad things: combat and the mazes. The combat often has the effect of paralyzing the narrative as you try one battle again and again. The holding cells come to mind, and Lyndon. Plus it's near impossible. I gave up and used General Boston from Echoes: Assualt halfway through, which was much better. Even then the final fight was hard.

 

And the mazes. They don't really serve to advance the plot at all, and are mind-blowingly irritating. Mazes in the dark are bad enough, but ones where you are teleported back to the start if you make one teensy-weensy mistake are maddening. MADDENING.

 

Still, an awesome and innotiative scenario.

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THE LURKER

 

Okay, I think it's time for me to rate this scenario.

 

I loved the cutscenes. I loved the combat. I loved the use of alchemy. The story was very well told, and very, very depressing as well. I'm still not sure which ending I like best, and I'm glad Thuryl made it possible to finish the game without having to kill Jessica. I loved the mazes (so there!), especially the last one. Took me a while to figure out how to solve that one. The use of nodes is awesome, the time limit is very well done (I recommend moving in combat mode as often as possible). I liked the elemental puzzle as well. I also loved the fact that this scenario is nearly bugless.

EDIT : I liked the few choices there were, too, as well as the flashbacks. Eh, I liked nearly everything. tongue.gif

 

See the Roots thread I made in the ASD forum for what I didn't like. Even then, the only thing I found to be a real flaw is what happens if you try to kill Lyndon/Howard/Warren before you're supposed to.

Howard's hammer was perhaps a bit too useless, as was Mass Sanctuary, but they're apparently here to trick the player (sort of).

The mutants were perhaps a bit *too* tough, the only non-ungodly hard way to beat them seems to be to bless yourself until they can't hit you, as Thuryl said.

EDIT 3 : Hmm. I've been replaying Roots, and it seems to be possible to beat them with only one speed potion if you abuse the end combat trick and the ice bolt spell.

 

At first I thought Jessica's barrier had too much HP, but Thuryl is right, concentrating on healing while letting Nikolai attack the barrier is a viable strategy, so it really isn't that bad.

 

This scenario is very enjoyable and in my opinion nearly perfect, wih only very minor flaws.

 

Best

 

EDIT 2 : I should also mention that giving the player spells that are usually useless in other scenarios, and succeeding in making them useful and interesting, is quite an achievement

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LAZARUS

 

One of the best plots I've seen in a Blades scenario. It's excellently presented, and always kept me interested. The bloodroot timer was an interesting idea, as were the books, alchemy, and dream sequences.

 

The combat.... Where do I start? I'm terrible at combat, and this scenario's combat just frustrated me. I would have given up, except that I really wanted to see how it ended. It distracted me from a great scenario, and I think it would have benefited from toning down the difficulty. At least it wasn't the standard dungeon fare, each fight was against a specific character and had plot importance.

 

Great scenario, top 3 in my mind. Best

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I'm on the fence about this scenario. On one hand, it was brilliant work, with a very well-written story, and challenging combat. On the other, there wasn't much time to do anything, as you had to rush through quickly in order to finish. I also wasn't a huge fan of the mazes.

 

That being said, there were lots of fun fights, and I liked the spell books, and being forced to find new combat strategies to win the scenario. I also liked making choices throughout, and the different endings.

 

I must admit I almost always choose to (SPOILER)pull the lever(/SPOILER)... may as well watch a cool SFX sequence at the end..

 

In retrospect, I'm going to rate this scenario Best. Very well made, some parts not to my taste, but a great challenge.

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