Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

That Old School Feeling: Forgotten Realms and Divinity: Original Sin 2

Posted by Rampant Coyote on August 27, 2015

I’m gonna post a two-for-one today, because it’s all so cool.

Number one: A great article from PC Gamer about how GOG.COM rescued thirteen Forgotten Realms D&D games from licensing hell. It’s both fascinating and a little disturbing as a retro-gamer. You think, “well, gee, why haven’t these guys gotten around to licensing this game yet,” and that’s why. The rights don’t necessarily go to with the merger / acquisition, especially where bankruptcy is involved. And in some cases, the owner of the rights might not even know they own the rights, or have any idea what it is even if they stumble across it going through old filing cabinets.

It’s also a decent cautionary tale about DRM. Perfect DRM means a game perfectly self-destructs when its caretakers hit a bump down the road, no matter how well-meaning they are on the game’s release. How many of these companies that seemed to be on top of the world in their heyday have gone the way of the dodo now, their assets scattered or forgotten? A lot.

Anyway, if you haven’t snagged them yet, GOG.COM has the awesome D&D games of yesteryear – the Forgotten Realms Gold Box games, Hillsfar, Forgotten Realms Unlimited Adventures (build your own gold box game!), the Eye of the Beholder series (BOOYAH!), Dungeon Hack, and Menzoberranzan. Sadly, not (yet) the Dragonlance or Buck Rogers gold box games, or the Ravenloft games. Hopefully they are pursuing these other licenses as well. But honestly – if you can handle the ancient DOS era interfaces (the latest of these games was published 20 years ago), they are way, WAY worth it, and represent hundreds of hours of old-school RPG goodness.


(Decades later, I still love the picture of Alias from the cover of the game & novel, but her stupid armor still fires off some OCD part of me that wants her to wear padding and find the missing centerpiece!)

Next up, we go from the awesome classic old-school games of the past to the awesome old-school-feeling games of the present. Divinity: Original Sin 2 is now in crowdfunding phase and has surpassed its funding goal on the very first day.¬† The first game was excellent. The second game promises improvement over the first game, naturally. But it also offers up to four people playing at the same time – which is cool – and a major emphasis on role-playing… especially the ability to to switch seamlessly between cooperative and competitive¬† gameplay.

Even more importantly (for me), competitive gameplay does not (necessarily) mean direct PvP. They are trying to go all-out on narrative design, and working against your fellow players may be all about pursuing a different end via quests and so forth.

This was pretty much an insta-backing for me, and I have a lot of faith in Larian as a studio, but that’s me. Your mileage may vary, but if you are interested, here’s the link:

Divinity: Original Sin 2 Kickstarter



Filed Under: Game Announcements, Retro - Comments: 2 Comments to Read

  • WhineAboutGames said,

    I have only just finished my first playthrough of Original Sin (late to the party) and it was amazing.

    (Not in terms of, like, having mind-blowing innovation or anything, just amazing in terms of giving me the kind of gameplay experience I wanted, at great length. It’s comfy. There are all kinds of things I could nitpick but they don’t MATTER, I had FUN.)

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Nothing’s perfect. But I think that kinda nails it. At least as far as I’m concerned, they *get it*.