here I am again pushing the mouse around trying desperately to not hurt
someone in anger. My party has died again. Let me make one thing clear:
I have little or no patience for things that do not go my way. I do
not have the patience to sit a watch a child cry or some numbskull try
to swipe my demagnetized visa card over and over again after being told
three times that the damned thing is demagnetized. I feel like asking
: Are you stupid?
Nonetheless, I found myself sitting in front of my electronic companion
anticipating a wicked game. I got Icewind Dale instead. Do not get me
wrong, I like the game…I was expecting something a little different
and think many others were too...
for this game with bated breath. I could barely trust myself to hold
it for fear that I might do some damage to the cellophane wrap! I remember
the day…..I remember what I wore! So I popped this bad boy in. Man,
was my heart pounding...I was so happy I was in tears. The excitement
was mounting as I began to create my characters. I defiantly pushed
the bitter taste of disappointment down as I looked at the not-so-great
character portraits of the oh-so-damned-many circus elves...
I took my crew into the field of adventure. I wandered around the town
talking to all the townspeople, as I am wont to do in an RPG. Why is
it that so many of them said the same things? Who had written this script?
Jacob two-two and the stutter gang?
So I wasted
my time there-obviously forgetting that this was supposed to be more
of a hack and slash RPG and not plot-heavy...yay. Thus, I trudged my
way through the town and did the usual: asked questions, looked for
things to steal. Do not worry about your lockpicking percentage...it
is rare to find anything of real excitement to steal in my opinion.
put things into perspective here. Icewind Dale comes from the Black
Isle/Bioware crew-the same crew that did Baldur's Gate. They are also
coming out with Baldur's Gate 2 this fall/late summer. So, if you are
expecting Icewind Dale to be like BG or even just a mini version of
it to tide you over, save yourself the disappointment and wait for BG
is not ugly by any stretch though. The pre-rendered background scenaries
are absolutely gorgeous. Like big bold painted murals from years long
past. The characters are a bit pixilated but hell, as long as I can
tell them apart, I am not that concerned.
talk a bit about character creation. Besides the fact that this game
is using the Infinity engine by Bioware, it is understandable that a
lot of the game is like BG. Character creation is one of the commonalties.
You choose the sex of your character, class (fighter, paladin, mage,
druid, etc), alignment (good, neutral, evil, etc), race (elf, half-elf,
troll, human etc) and you get to choose their weapon specialty and their
strengths. Last but not least you have to name your character. I can
tell you from experience, this is the biggest hassle of the game. If
you are anything like me, then only the most original, cool-sounding
name will do. I have spent something to the effect of 10 minutes on
the name part alone per character. Once you get over this hump, fighting
NPC is nothing but cake on your birthday. Here, you can create up to
6 characters- no solo hero in this game like BG.
has definitely added a really great feature that was not available in
BG. Before you start every game, you have the opportunity to delete
an old character and create a new character. Is that chaotic good paladin
throwing a wrench in your plans to rule the world? Easy, delete him!
sound is great. There is an abundance of background noises…you know,
the usual ones that pertain to each scene and the footsteps etc.. Also,
the music is wicked as we all knew it would be from the pre-release
MP3 samples. The music is easily impressive. And to add to your character,
there is a wide selection of voices to choose from. There are both male
and female voices and also selections of mages, fighters and thieves
to choose from. My favourite male voice is the male fighter voice. He
grunts, groans, growls, belches and spits...ok maybe he is not that
bad but he is damned close to being a 'real' man (heheheheheheh...just
is pretty decent too-the usual RPG stuff-but of course, telling you
any of it would disappoint those who want a perfect and fresh game start.
do I think of Icewind Dale? This part I cannot avoid. I like the concepts
in the game, but I think that the parts that are not like Baldur's
Gate should not have been used here. That is a harsh statement, I know,
but the game doesn't seem to know what it wanted to do. It is not a
pure hack and slash like many said it would be-too much an attempt at
RPG interaction and not enough efficient battling. Diablo II is obviously
a perfect example of a pure hack and slash. But Icewind Dale is also
not a full-fledged RPG either. Too much emphasis on boring fights that
are far too tough especially at the game's start and the lack of interaction
doesn't make this game compete as a full RPG either-which is what Baldur's
Gate was in its purest form. It is some form of odd hybrid that isn't
completely successful at attracting a player to either of the elements
contained within. At least this player anyway.
just hope that BG fans are proficient at ignoring what BG did better
and what ID did not do. I hope that they can see that this is the problem
with having such a great game looming over the shoulder of another.
(I have my theory for why this game was put out with its timing and
such, but it holds no water as of yet). To be honest, I was expecting
a little more of a dolled-up version of BG with cooler characters. I
got pretty cool characters all right but mostly elves and trolls. Makes
one want to ask, 'Planescape didn't really disappoint, why did this?'.
When you play this game, play it as if you have never played BG before.
It is a bonus for those who have not played BG or Torment; that way
there is nothing to compare to. Once you can do that, you will start
enjoying the game.
Yes I liked
the game but as you can see, I was disappointed. A main beef is that
there is little or no difference between easy mode and normal mode.
You are killed just the same. I played one quest about 4-5 times because
my party members were just ripped apart! They also tend to stand around
checking out their dayplanners while an animal is gnawing on their legs-the
player AI is often dumb and slow and that never seems to be the same
for the enemy AI. You have to very aware of what your party is doing
at all times or they could find themselves in trouble. I hate to be
a sore loser but how am I to enjoy the game if cannot finish a really
simple quest in less than three tries or without me losing almost all
my party members? I do not like comparing BG and Icewind Dale because
they are two different ends of the same general genre and not sequels
BUT they did use the same engine and in this case, familiarity breeds
disappointment. I bestow upon this game a 74%. Good, but not at all
beautiful as usual although they need to start making the characters
a little less pixilated AI felt unimpressive.
is also beautiful, but gameplay is unfulfilling. Feels like the
game itself didn't know exactly what it wanted to be sometimes.
is no Baldur's Gate OR PS:Torment...but a lot of devotees will
still adore this title for simply being 'Baldur's Gate-esque'.
good old feeling...kinda...
of the first architectural wonders you get to experience is the
nifty Temple of Tempos...If there is one thing that Icewind Dale
keeps with in terms of the Baldur's Gate engine tradition it's
the sweet sights one can see in the game...
yes....you can still raid houses in the game, but for some reason,
the lockpicking finds don't really ever get that exciting-for
the most part anyway. There are still some decent finds though
just check out that texturing....the pre-rendered backgrounds
rock as usual....enough said.
this shot was taken near the game's beginning, there was something
interesting to be noticed-we always walked around with HALF our
party intact (as shown here) because frankly, despite how many
times a party was re-balanced, the enemy AI always managed to
outnumber/outdamage us and the party AI would attack slowly and
defend poorly for some reason. A bummer indeed.