Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

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NL's Take on "Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome"

Discussion in 'Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome' started by Naked_Lunch, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    INTRO OR: HOW TO NOT GET RAPED BY WEASELS
    Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome, as you may know, is the historical RPG written by Wolf Mittag, who happens to have a wicked bad-ass name. You may also know that said game is also a very good game. But what you sure as hell don't know what I personally think about the game, unless you are really me and that would be scary. Or at the least, strangely erotic.

    THE ACTUAL REVIEW, WHICH CAN ALSO BE USED AS EVIDENCE FOR INCEST
    I've always been interested with the Roman setting, even as kid I spent most of my time reading about Augustus or Constantine while other kids were outside having sex and doing drugs or possibly murdering their parents, who knows. When I started getting into RPGs, I immediately knew that a setting during the age of the Romans would be awesome. The setting is rich for all sorts of roleplaying, along with the contrasts of Roman life vs. the Barbarians. Teudogar is almost like that dream game, except Teudogar does not have vampire sex.

    Looking at Teudogar, one can not help but notice it's resemblance to Origin's brilliant Ultima 7, which (as it is my favorite game OF ALL TIME), is a very, very positive thing. Though the graphics technically are quite aged, artistically they are quite adequate. As it takes place in the wilds of Germania, with it's plentiful forests, swamps and rivers, there is a lot of earthy colors in the graphics. Expect lots of browns, greens , et cetera, et cetera. This is not a bad thing, but in fact it lends itself to an immersive feel, dragging you into this wild and savage Barbarian world.

    TATAWR (Pronounced TAT-O-ROAR, I think) begins with the conflict of whether the PC should go along with his Chief's plan for a war against the Romans, or if he should take the advice of a the priest Teudogar and ally themselves with said wops. Both are played out great, though the Alliance plot is WAY, WAY, WAY TOO SHORT, I think I must've beat it in about, oh say, 20-30 minutes. Yes, it's that short. If I have one big complaint about TATAWR, it's the "Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome" part. The war against the romans plot, however, is much more involved and thankfully, much longer.

    The War with Rome plot is filled with betrayings, twists and turns, all sort of that epic stuff. It's great, I ate it up and asked for seconds.There are very little sub-quests, but because the main quest is so continously involving and interesting, it's not really a bother. I really felt like I was changing the fate of a whole world, yet because of the game's free-form structure, I could've just as well simply been a merchant sitting on the sidelines. A neat little "End game" feature allows you to end the game (duh) whenever you feel it's time, giving you a nice little synospis of the rest of your life and your achievements and such. Very cool touch that I wish more games could include (Morrowind, for one).

    Almost every item in the game can be manipulated, pliers and hammers can repair armor, you can weave cloth, even catch fish! It really makes the game feel so much more alive, so much more immersive.

    Combat in the game is done in a rouge-like fashion, i.e. you have one action per turn (move, attack, use item etc) and then the enemy gets his one turn and such. People have said that the combat needed more options, but I believe it's adequate, as you can use blessings and curses and special techniques (Beserk, Protect, and what not). If the combat needs anything, it's more missle weapons. As for now, there are only spears, but what about throwing axes or bows, crossbows?

    When it comes to the abundance and priority of combat, TATAWR plays it Ultima VII stlye: combat somewhat takes a backseat for world interaction, dialouges and general roleplaying. Not to say combat isn't an option or that it's so bad or hard you don't want to do it, it's that the other features are more prominment. Dialouges are generally very well done, and even though I don't think stat checks were used (Correct me if I'm wrong), there is still ample room for roleplaying. There's lots of situations that involve revenge within the game, and many ways to get said revenge, whether it be challenging the person to a fair duel, poisoning his drink so he dies "mysteriously" or just whipping out that sword and kicking ass. That is, if you're skills are good enough...

    Skills and stats, stats and skills, the very backbone of an RPG. TATAWR does not use the conventional leveling system used since the ancient times when Gary Gygax was once a pretty cool dude, but instead raises your skills and stats by doing them. If you practice with your sword on a dummy, your sword skill will get better. Make a lot of sacrifices to Woden or bless other people your faith and charisma will rise. Stats and Skills are also modified by your general health, if you are overburdened, a penalty to dexterity. If you haven't eaten in a while, strength will drop. So, as in real life, thieves will want to carry less items as not to tire the vital dexterity they need for pickpocketing and warriors will want to carry a lot of heavy armor to increase their strength. Some people may not like it, but I enjoy the fact I won't have to stare at a character sheet all the time and pretend it's OMG ROLLERPLAYGIN!

    FINAL THOUGHT OR: THE REST OF THIS REVIEW IS USELESS NOW THAT I HAVE SIMPLY SUMMED UP EVERYTHING
    Most people judge indie games relative to other indie games, as they are not good enough for the "big leagues". Screw that, Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome isn't just better than most indie games, it's quite the simply one of the best games I've played in years. It has roleplaying (Something sadly lacking in most other ROLEPLAYING games), excellent atmosphere, and great interaction both with the unique setting and with NPCS. As Ceasar once said, "When in Rome, get this goddamn game."
     
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  2. Fezgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Fez
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    Also, if you wear nice armor and jewelry, you impress people more.

    It's a good game and well worth getting.
     
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  3. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Really? I didn't know that, I thought it was kinda just there for show. Cool. :)
     
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  4. dipdipdipgender: ⚧ Liturgist

    dipdipdip
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    I bought the game about a year ago, and I still haven't touched it. HOW STUPID AM I.
     
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  5. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Very. Go play it now.
     
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  6. protobobgender: ⚧ Liturgist

    protobob
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    I love this game.
     
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  7. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    It's definitely one of my faves. I only wish it had a traveling system like Arcanum's (You can walk across the world in real-time, but can also travel location to location via a world map).
     
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  8. Wolf Mittaggender: ⚧ Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
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    Hello Naked Lunch, thank you for this review, and thank you all for your comments. I'm feeling quite flattered; I wouldn't have expected an endorsement that positive. As to the weaknesses you mentioned, I share your opinion on these, and will fix at least some of them sometime, and not repeat others.

    Alliance plot is WAY, WAY, WAY TOO SHORT : Looking back, I have to agree. The problem is that it's naturally extremely easy to conclude an alliance with Rome. The Romans want to end their war of conquest quickly and cheaply, and bring home their troops; so they're offering alliances with quite fair conditions to every tribe willing to join them - all a tribe needs to do is to accept. And on the Teuton side, no one enjoys to be at war with a militarily vastly superior superpower. Except for a few noblemen hoping to win power and booty in a war against the Romans, most people will be in favor of an alliance with Rome. So there aren't that many obstacles to overcome. However, as an author, it's my job to create obstacles in sufficient numbers, even if there are only few natural ones. I didn't fully realize that at the time of writing the plot. I focused too much on the juicier and much, much longer war-against-Rome plot, and failed to pump up the alliance-with-Rome plot to a sufficient size. (By the way, the game is named "and the Alliance with Rome" for reasons of political correctness; of course "Tribal Alliance AGAINST Rome" would be much more fitting regarding the plot.)

    more missle weapons : True. I ought to implement slingstones (so far I shirked the extra work of managing the ammo). Bows were apparently not used in Germania; Teutons used spears and traps for hunting (as did the Romans). Some Roman auxiliary units from the Mediterranean used bows but these units weren't deployed in Germania as far as I know; instead there were units of Roman auxiliary soldiers with slings and leaden projectiles. Throwing axes and expecially crossbows weren't invented until centuries later. That'd leave slingstones; and maybe different kinds of spears/javelins such as the original Roman "pilum", which is really quite different from a Teutonic spear (though it's treated as the same in Teudogar, for now). (In DARGHUL (a fantasy RPG I'm currently working on) I've added throwing axes and increased the number of missile weapons you can carry and have ready for use.)

    traveling system : (with a continuous game world, allowing both walking and teleporting) That's another thing I've implemented in DARGHUL. I've implemented many of the suggestions I received in this forum or via feedback form; however, at a certain point of development I had to split the new DARGHUL engine source code from the original Teudogar engine code; it's still downward compatible, i.e. after I've finished DARGHUL I can release a new version of Teudogar that'll use the improved DARGHUL engine; however, in the meantime it doesn't make sense to do any more work on the old, Teudogar-only code. So there'll be a delay until all improvements finally become available with Teudogar (as usual, there'll then be free downloadable update patches for all full versions, and the demo versions can be updated by downloading and installing the latest demo anyway).
     
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  9. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Wow, thanks Wolf. It's great to see you're still working on it. Hope DARGHUL (what's up with all the caps?) turns out awesome. Can't wait for Teudogar 2, though! ;)
     
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  10. Joragender: ⚧ Arcane

    Jora
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    Good review! It made me download the demo again and give it another try. I quickly understood how stupid I was not to appreciate the game when it was released.

    I didn't hesitate to order the full version.
     
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  11. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Thank's Jora, hope you enjoy the full game you ordered just because of my review!

    That's quite alright, Wolf, no need to thank me! :D
     
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  12. Sarkilegender: ⚧ Liturgist

    Sarkile
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    It's odd, but I've really been wanting to play this game, and the only reason I haven't ordered it yet is because I don't want to wait for the cd.
     
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  13. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Where do you live? I live in Boston and it only took me about 4-5 days.

    The best part is that it was behind schedule, so the company sent me another copy free of charge to compensate. Great customer service!
     
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  14. Sarkilegender: ⚧ Liturgist

    Sarkile
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    I live in Michigan. I remember the demo being very good, I enjoyed it more than Ultima 7 even. Maybe if I start playing through that again it'll spur me into buying it.
     
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  15. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Well, if you live in Michigan the delivery shouldn't take more than a week, I figure.
     
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  16. Fezgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Fez
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    I've had worse delivery times from big companies, and paid for the crappy service.
     
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  17. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Amazon, at least for me, was the worst. I ordered Wizardry 8 from them, oh about, 5 months ago and only about a month ago did I recieve an email telling my order has not been processed and my shipment was being cancelled. Dubbya-Tee-Eff?
     
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  18. Anonymousgender: ⚧ Guest

    Anonymous
    My copy arrived today. It took four days (as the website said). :D

    The witch living south of Heremod's Hall wants jewellery in exchange for teaching wizardry but when I gave her a golden necklace she still thought I hadn't given her anything. :?
     
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  19. Joragender: ⚧ Arcane

    Jora
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    The previous poster was me. :x
     
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  20. Naked_Lunchgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Naked_Lunch
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    Hmm, I don't think I did that quest. Sorry, can't help you there.
     
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  21. Anonymousgender: ⚧ Guest

    Anonymous
    You specifically need golden jewellery. The merchant in Cattenford will sell you some. Talk to the witch with it in your inventory don't just give it to her.
     
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  22. Joragender: ⚧ Arcane

    Jora
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    It was golden. I talked to her before I had it, while I had it in my inventory and after I had given it to her. Didn't buy it from a shop, though. It was part of a bandit's treasure.
     
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  23. Dark Elfgender: ⚧ Erudite

    Dark Elf
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    I downloaded the demo, emerged completely into it and nearly skullfucked my computer when I couldn't get further in the storyline because of demo restrictions. Fortunately, I came to my senses and started pondering whether I will buy this thing or not. My other me hasn't decided yet, but it looks like I will.
     
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  24. Joragender: ⚧ Arcane

    Jora
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    My problem is solved. Golden neck rings just aren't jewellery.
     
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  25. Anonymousgender: ⚧ Guest

    Anonymous
    Hallo !

    Wieso gibt es hier kein deutschsprachiges Forum??
    Ich bin schon über 60 und konnte nie richtig
    englisch lernen (sorry) !
    Ich würde gerne wissen was der NAKED-LUNCH
    gesagt hat zu dem Spiel !
    Ich habe die Demo etwas gespielt, weil ich über
    das Internet auf das Germanen-Lexikon gestossen
    bin und auch das Spiel mochte !

    Grüsse Hannes
    ach ja,wollte sagen: "GREETINGS TO ALL"
     
    Anonymous rolled 6-sided di(c)e: ASnJdvPEkQDdcKyBc Total: 42
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