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Codex Review Outcast - a genre bending masterpiece

DarkUnderlord

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Tags: Appeal; Outcast

TNO got bored of all the New Shit™ and decided to take a quick look at some Good Old Shit™ by reviewing Outcast. Outcast is more a puzzle-adventure-type-thing than an RPG-type-thing but here's a bit:

The dialogue is broadly good, and is also broadly well acted. The music is utterly sensational: well composed, well motifed, and well performed by the Moscow orchestra and chorus. Three examples although I really could have taken any of the tracks: 1 2 3. Also the incidental sounds (especially the beast calls) make the world of Outcast come alive.

Helping this is the careful scripting of the NPCs. Talanzaar, the bazaar-esque trading hub of Adelpha is a case in point. Dozens of NPCs carry loads, move to and from each other, go on set 'rounds' or patrols, go to their workshops to craft items for you and generally, well, make it look like the bustling bazaar. It simply beggars belief why games almost ten years later still can't do something similarly convincing. Similar sentiments apply to the fauna too.​

If the game sounds mildly interesting, you can pick it up from GOG these days. /Shameless plug
 
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Konjad

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Sounds interesting... I may buy it. How is this possible I never heard about this game?

BTW I love rating at the end :love:
 

shihonage

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The game still looks good, especially as any modern system can trick out the anti-aliasing and bump mapping to help ameliorate the low resolution and simple textures.

Wrong. The engine is software-only, and as far as I remember, capped at 512x384 resolution.
 

thesheeep

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I'm not sure about software-only, but since they are using voxels instead of pixels (imagine voxels as little building bricks), it would make sense.

I'd love to make a voxel game, just for the sake of having worked with voxels. Maybe some day I'll find time for it ;)

This one was fun to look at:
http://voxelstein3d.sourceforge.net/
 

Zed

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Not a big fan of the voxel terrain but everything else is great. Definitely approve of this game.
 

commie

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Fucking great game this was/is. I liked how there were some really interesting quests and characters in it. The way you could weaken the enemy troops by attacking certain islands first was also pretty neat even if it didn't have all that much effect. For example you could overthrow the regimes troops on the agricultural island, making subsequent enemy troops be weaker due to lack of supplies, or instigate a rebellion on the weapons ore island which would make the enemy rely on weaker weapons due to a lack of ammunition.
 

Malachi

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The funny part is that, at first glance, I read the subject of the thread as "Outcast - a gender bending masterpiece."

I thought to myself, "What? Another tranny thread? They've taken over the Codex!"
:lol:
 

spectre

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The funny part is that, at first glance, I read the subject of the thread as "Outcast - a gender bending masterpiece."

There is such a thing as too much codex, then.

I remember being highly interested in Outcast, the gaming rags praised it to high heavan, yet it was really hard to buy. And hardly any scurvy-ridden individual happened to have taken it as booty.
 

commie

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pocahaunted said:
Bought this when it came out, definitely an awesome game - still have it properly boxed right here.

Same here. I also found a torrent of the DVD version last year. Never knew there was one. Finally could install it properly without the patch.
 

Gragt

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I said it before but this game does a far better job at offering the player a believable and active world than Oblivion did.
 
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The only (?) place where you can learn game design in Belgium has a gigantic Outcast poster near the entrance, so that students can look at it and think "we'll never achieve anything like that again". It sold poorly due too lack of advertising and because it required a monster PC to run smoothly. Appeal started to work onOutcast 2 but had to give up, then Osmosis and Totems suffered the same fate. :/
I don't know if they're still alive.
 

spekkio

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Konjad said:
How is this possible I never played this game?
Fixed. One of the best "alien worlds" in gaming, but some design decisions can lead to serious nerdrage. To quote one of the reviews at Mobygames:

"Can you help Bippy-Poo find his toothbrush, Ulukai?"

"Where is Bippy-Poo, Shazam-Kaboom?"

"I cannot see him from here, Ulukai, but he is somewhere north-west".
People who played this game should know what's wrong with this dialog... :roll:

No quest-compass...
 

TNO

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[quote="Shihonage]Wrong. The engine is software-only, and as far as I remember, capped at 512x384 resolution.[/quote]

The resolution cap is correct, but the graphics options definitely let you turn on bump mapping and AA. Unless I've gone crazy.
 

Turjan

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spekkio said:
Konjad said:
How is this possible I never played this game?
Fixed. One of the best "alien worlds" in gaming, but some design decisions can lead to serious nerdrage. To quote one of the reviews at Mobygames:

"Can you help Bippy-Poo find his toothbrush, Ulukai?"

"Where is Bippy-Poo, Shazam-Kaboom?"

"I cannot see him from here, Ulukai, but he is somewhere north-west".
People who played this game should know what's wrong with this dialog... :roll:

No quest-compass...
Isn't that a compass at the top of this image? At least it looks like one.

img1.jpg
 

Nim

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TNO said:
The resolution cap is correct, but the graphics options definitely let you turn on bump mapping and AA. Unless I've gone crazy.

Wrong. You can use 640x480 either through a fanmade patch (if that one is still somewhere to be found) or manually through the ini. Unfortunately the HUD doesn't get adjusted but it's still pretty nice.
 

Turjan

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baronjohn said:
Turjan said:
Isn't that a compass at the top of this image? At least it looks like one.

img1.jpg

But it's not a quest compass.
Next you tell me is that Bippy-Poo doesn't have a yellow exclamation mark hovering over his head.
 

Wirdschowerdn

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Those guys at Appeal were really an unlucky bunch. First, Outcast 2 was canceled. Then they formed their new company (Elsewhere Entertainment, later 10tacle Belgium) and worked on Symbiosis. Years later that was canceled and then they worked on the promising Totems. http://www.planet-adelpha.net/Totems/index.html Guess what. 10Tacle went bancrupt and that project was dead as well.

The world is sometimes unfair. FFS.
 

Gragt

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shihonage said:
That is sexist. Bippy-Poo, despite her masculine-sounding name, could be a female.

All the females are on an island in the Okasankaar.

And damn Spekkio, I thought you were more hardcore than that.
 

baronjohn

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Turjan said:
baronjohn said:
Turjan said:
Isn't that a compass at the top of this image? At least it looks like one.

img1.jpg

But it's not a quest compass.
Next you tell me is that Bippy-Poo doesn't have a yellow exclamation mark hovering over his head.

Sometimes they wave and shout 'Ulukai, over here!'
 

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