Official RPG Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

A look at Darklands

Discussion in 'General RPG Discussion' started by ColCol, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. ColCol Arcane

    ColCol
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,716
    Darklands was a game that I've wanted to play for a long time. Darklands, on the surface, seemed like one of the few rare video games to capture the tabletop experience. I tried to play it several times but its initial starting difficulty stalled my attempts. Yet, this did not kill my interest in Darklands. The little I saw and read about the game only served to make me feel that I was missing an amazing rpg experience. The game was open world, with tons of options and approaches, and even some choice and consequence mechanics! Recently, I bit the bullet and went head first into learning all the game's mechanics. I was able to learn the game's nuances and began my first earnest attempt at playing and completing the game. This topic will serve as a qusai-review of the game. I will tackle how the game feels in the beginning(early), middle, and end (plus some other thoughts). Currently I am nearing the end of the game.


    Early game


    The beginning of Darklands, simply put, is garbage. You start randomly in one of Germany's many cities. Unless you abuse mechanics (or reroll/remake characters frequently) there is not much you will be able to do in these cities. You will not be able to travel (leave the city), you will not find work, you will not be able to heal quickly..really the list goes. What you can do is fight common thugs in the city's shittier areas, but only at night.

    Eventually, your cleaning of the city's crime filled streets will raise your reputation enough that you can start finding work with the city's upper crust. I want to say it took me three to two hours of grinding before people started giving my party proper quests/work. This time was affected by the slow pace of healing (you'll likely only heal one point of health a day) and initial lack of proper areas to rest for healing (due to lack of funds). Unfortunately, I could only seemingly get one job from every quest giver in the city, kill a robber baron. This was strange to me because both the game and outside materials make killing barons seem like later game quest or objective. This is very true for the most part, all attempts at fighting the baron head on lead to my party's demise. Yet, no matter how many times I reloaded I did not find any other job offers.

    I decided to bite the bullet and explore if there were other options for taking out the baron. Finally, I started seeing the game's many options and roleplaying possibilities. There was a variety of ways to approach the baron: Appear friendly, sneaking in, siege his castle, and more. I decided to sneak into the baron's castle and corner the baron alone in his room. I was successful and my party quickly made short work of the single baron (the baron's men gave up after his defeat). At this point the power curve of my party changed dramatically. I could afford heavily upgraded gear, horses, and any extra equipment I needed for my journey (with money to spare) . I started heading out and exploring the world of 15th century Germany. I had seemingly reached a point where I was already making short work of the average random encounter on the road. So, I was a little taken aback, when again, I could only find a quest in another town about killing another robber baron. I didn't approach the quest the same way but I did take a path that lead to me cornering another baron into his room. This quest was also successful and now I really was alfush with cash. I could now travel easily-in the sense that could pay boats for transportation or just crush anything on the road. I now have the resources, its just a matter of finding stuff to do in the game.

    This is my view of the early parts of Darklands. Darklands seems to have a lot going on but the game makes you you go through a tedious grind to even get to the exciting parts. The game would benefit from allowing you to try some early quests, perhaps within the city. I was also a little concerned about how quickly I seemed to be growing in power. Around five hours into the game and I was already defeating most enemies I encountered with ease. I will post about the middle portions of the game as soon as possible.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2017
    • Acknowledge this user's Agenda Acknowledge this user's Agenda x 1
    ^ Top  
  2. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,875,082
    Location:
    Djibouti
    but why

    the gates are wide open
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  
  3. ColCol Arcane

    ColCol
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,716

    I mean, you can, but it seems pointless. Early game the roads are dangerous and you'll just end up at a city where you can't find work till you grind. Better to do a few missions in a starter city (plus level some stats) that will make it easier to find work in other cities at a later point.
     
    ^ Top  
  4. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,875,082
    Location:
    Djibouti
    I remember my first playthrough began with me dicking around in the starting town, which left me at -30 reputation and rather unwelcome there, so I just hit the road and busted through some random encounters and cultists. Only afterwards did I go into another city.
     
    ^ Top  
  5. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    octavius
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2007
    Messages:
    16,082
    Location:
    Bjørgvin
    The weakest part of Darklands is that you need to break the curfew in order to improve your reputation. But once you're over that hurdle I think it was a very enjoyable game. It has some technical limitations, which felt more real than the technical limitations of other old games (which in retrospect was for the good, otherwise apparantly all games would have been real time, for example), like all cities looking alike and only about six quests can be active at the same time.

    Pro tip from another thread:
    Now this is annoying: if using the mouse for movement your party will just move straight ahead, instead of using roads, and happily bump into rivers instead of using that nice bridge 100 yards further south. But if you use the number keys to move with you are unlikely to see messages like this since they flash by so fast.

    [​IMG]

    I wonder what other messages I might have missed?
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2017
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  6. Jinn Arcane

    Jinn
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    3,483
    The worst part of playing Darklands for me has been grinding bandits in the opening city for money to buy better armor and getting reputation. I've been very slowly returning to it every so often to grind some more, but goddamn does that same battle get old fast. I look forward to one day being able to venture out into the wilderness and actually be able to get somewhere and have some adventures in this game. I know there is a ton of great things to experience in it.
     
    • Acknowledge this user's Agenda Acknowledge this user's Agenda x 1
    ^ Top  
  7. hivemind Cipher Patron Pretty Princess

    hivemind
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2019
    Messages:
    2,043
    there really arent

    the game has like 5 encounters

    also grinding thugs is retarded, grind city guards they have much better loot

    kinda dissapointed with this tbh because of how it's hyped up but I guess its not really fair to complain due to the age

    I think the overall char creation and stat balance systems are actually very cool and kinda nice, but unfortunately by far the best part of the game

    especially the whole like, muh entire germany thing is kinda dumb due to how little content there is to spread throughout that entire land
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Old Old x 2
    • Bad Spelling Bad Spelling x 2
    ^ Top  
  8. hivemind Cipher Patron Pretty Princess

    hivemind
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2019
    Messages:
    2,043
    my hot take: darklands is just worse banal brothers
     
    • rolleyes rolleyes x 1
    • cool story bro cool story bro x 1
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    • Bad Spelling Bad Spelling x 1
    ^ Top  
  9. buffalo bill Prophet

    buffalo bill
    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2016
    Messages:
    696
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Darklands rules, you degenerates
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 5
    • meh meh x 1
    • Yes Yes x 1
    • Deus Vult Deus Vult x 1
    ^ Top  
  10. Sotomonte Novice

    Sotomonte
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2020
    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Kingdom of Spain

    :nocountryforshitposters:
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  
  11. ColCol Arcane

    ColCol
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,716
    Lol. I wanted to return to this but got sidetracked. My view kind of of matches your own. I would recommend the game to people because there is a lot to like in it. Yet, the game often falls into heavy grind territory . You start with thugs, move on to stealth attacks on robber barons, then from minor supernatural event (dwarf mines) to minor supernatural event.. This is fine, but you'll be doing this again and again and again as you slowly improve your characters. Events on the map are also often the same. Ever towns/cites tend to lack unique character and the only reason to visit a particular one is usually to pick up one prayer or a unique item. It wasn't until you get to the end game that it really starts to pick up (dragon/ cult, etc). I think Darklands could have really benefited from something akin to the transport tycoon open source remake. It's graphics and gameplay are simple enough that fans could have really improved it.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.