Rantglass - because that's how things are.


Identify item: scroll, or spell?

Identify item: scroll, or spell?

I did not think that there would be anyone who would be interested to read of the woeful whinings and incessant complaints I had during the past week, although I did manage to corner a friend or two to spill my gloomy thoughts and insecurities to them. I was completely drained of the so-called festive spirit, and saw no point in spreading it to the innocent people out there, who were most probably busy hanging plastic balls of all colours onto their Christmas trees, and could not make up their minds to get the perfect gift for the much-loved Aunt Sue.

All in all, it was a bad week.

The weekend brightened up just a little, when I returned home to start hacking and slashing unfortunate goblins in Icewind Dale 2, strapping myself into the action right from the start, literally. I foresee unfinished and delayed assignments, should I continue to indulge myself in the game. (Un)Fortunately, it was not that addictive – although I was adamant to finish up a few fiends before finally calling it a day.

As always, I draw comparisons from the game and the other (sigh) better ones released before it. I think Neverwinter Nights will have to rank as my favourite RPG of all time due to its strong playability factor (I spent months on that game), and it probably is only a small step ahead of Planescape: Torment, which had an excellent storyline, complete with quirky and equally memorable characters.

I was actually confusing myself by pressing the wrong keys while playing Icewind Dale 2, still adhering to the keyboard functions of Neverwinter Nights. Of course, having gotten used to the latter, I was personally lamenting of the absence of a ‘Stone of Recall’ to teleport my character back to town in a jiffy. Instead of taunting enemies to come at you one by one (as in Neverwinter Nights), the orcs and goblins charged savagely as a vicious horde towards my party of six, outnumbering them. Also, due to the introduction of the 3rd edition of D&D rules, I found myself mildly protesting at the fact that my wizard can actually don an armor and use a crossbow.

Usually, the hardest part in starting an RPG is the creation of your own characters. I spent more than half an hour creating my characters in Icewind Dale 2 during the last weekend, meticulously choosing races, alignments, appearances and whatnots – and the electricity had to go off just as I was about to begin the game (and my newly-formed characters were not saved!). It was utterly frustrating to go through the process for a second time in one day.

I still think it is a grave mistake to shut down Black Isle Studios – a division of Interplay, which was largely responsible for producing games such as Icewind Dale, Planescape: Torment, and the (more?) well-received Baldur’s Gate.

As you may no doubt have guessed by now – yes, I love playing computer games, especially of the role-playing and strategy genre. Creating games is, of course, an interesting matter – but having it staring back at you, right into your face – the fascination somehow seems to dwindle very much so. I wonder what is going to help me get through the next few months, which will possibly include frying my precious eyeballs and producing endless nights of meticulous scripting – to produce a very lame game for my final project.

Then, the server hosting this website had to crash, and Rantglass was inaccessible for almost two days.

Did I mention that it has been a bad week?

(off topic: to Joel – if you still drop by, that is – my apologies that there was not a B:TG#3 while you were in KL.)

Details of this entry.Monday, December 29, 2003, filed under Blogger Archives.
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