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Phantasie series

Discussion in 'General RPG Discussion' started by octavius, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    After games like Wizard's Crown and Wizardry 4 I need something lighter and simpler, and it ocurred to me that I never quite finished P1 and never played P2 due to no DOS or Amiga versions. So I'm thinking of doing a complete playthrough of all three games with the same party.

    But which version to use?
    The superior version graphically is easily the Atari ST version, and from what I've heard the Steem emulator is more user friendly than Amiga emulators. One problem I had with the Amiga version of P1 was that the only versions I could find were cracked ones where the overland had already been explored. The DOS version had a function with which you could reset the game that was sadly lacking in the Amiga version. Anyone know how other versions of Phantasie handle this? I suspect the Atari ST version is the same as the Amiga version, but maybe there are better version avilable where the game is not already explored?
    P2 was also made for Atari 8 bit, C64 and Apple II. Anyone know how these version are?

    Anyone actually done a playthrough of all the Phantasie games with the same characters?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
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  2. Baron Arcane

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    I have an Apple II boxed copy of Phantasie II sitting on my bookshelf, only fairly recently acquired. I'm yet to play any of the Phantasie series.

    As for which version for you to play... there is rarely any reason to alter the fundamental order of platforms. Atari 8 bit would be shit. Apple was great in its day - especially for RPGs, but C64 usually had better graphics. Go with the Atari ST, no reason not to. Apple II sounds usually consisted of electronic farting noises (Bard's Tale III the glorious exception).

    The screenshots from the back of the box I have is from the Apple version and look quite good, comparable to Ultima IV, if that's any help. Post an update / review if you start playing it. Just flicking through the manual I'm inspired to give it a shot next. I've been recently playing my beloved Knights of Legend, which most people hate due to it's glorious afternoon long encounters.


    Weird... just found two Apple copies of Questron II. Haven't played that either, no idea why I have two.
     
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  3. Deuce Traveler Prestigious Gentleman 2012 Newfag Patron

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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    I played through all three of the US Phantasie games and defeated the trilogy with the same party I initially created. I played it on the Atari 130 XE, and so basically the Atari ST version. I have fond memories of the game on this system and I think it was better in graphics than some of the PC versions I saw recently.

    The trilogy should be a nice change of pace from Wizard's Crown. Where Wizard's Crown is tactics heavy with little exploration and discovery, the Phantasie series is less tactically complex (though tactics do matter) and much more about exploration. It really is a great trilogy and maybe the earliest commercial CRPG I can think of that allows you to play monsters as heroes instead of the typical human, elves and dwarves. Just remember to try and search every square for hidden secrets indoors and explore every square outdoors in order to find every dungeon.
     
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  4. Fatty Augur

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    I tried about a year ago using the C64 version. Got to the dungeon with the bleebs and my save game got corrupted. Bottom line - back up your save disks. I don't suspect I'll return to it any time soon. It was OK-ish but played too slow. Moving was too slow, combat was too slow. Maybe the other versions are better, or I missed some option somewhere to speed it up.
     
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  5. Daemongar Arcane Patron

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    I played through P1 - 2 on the C64, so I'll encourage that. I played (but didn't finish) P3 on the Amiga. I would strongly recommend the C64 version. Also, P1-3 is available for the C64, where you pointed out the other platforms may be spotty.

    Couple annoying things about the C64 version (from memory): map transitions may require disk swaps and those can be pretty tedious if you don't set up your emulator right, there are 9 rings to find and you could end up with more since the Black Lords dropped them. Not a bug, but it kinda killed my buzz when I played the game, knowing there are a set amount but the game would give out more. Also, inventory really sucks when buying and distributing to your party. Don't know if any of these things are fixed on other versions.

    I'll second what Duece Traveler: searching every square was important, but the nice thing is that there wasn't an overwhelming amount of enemies like The Bard's Tale. There was a fixed amount of enemies in a dungeon (I believe).

    On the other hand, P1 is a real gem: take advantage of save states, as you'll not rest until you have killed Zeus.
     
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  6. Zombra An iron rock in the river of blood and evil Patron

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    Wow, those games really existed? I thought I dreamed that whole thing. I guess I played quite a bit of the first game. I don't really remember. Strange because Wizard's Crown came out the same year and I remember that well. I don't know if that tells you something about Phantasie or not. Good luck getting through all 3 games.
     
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  7. Daemongar Arcane Patron

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    Speaking for myself, this doesn't tell me something about the Phantasie series.
     
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  8. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Why the C64 versions instead of the Atari ST versions with their superior graphics?
    Also, I seem to recall problems with bugs in the C64 versions. OTOH, I haven't hear much about people playing the ST versions.

    I've actually played P1 before, as well as P3. I didn't quite complete P1 since I didn't have enough Fireflash IV spells to kill The Dark Lord. Who would have though he would only take 1 damage from physical weapons?
     
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  9. Daemongar Arcane Patron

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    Eh, I guess I always defer to the C64 version because I am more familiar with it. I wouldn't push anyone away from the XT version, but it wasn't my thing.
    Might be more due to the Atari's low market-share than a more bug free release. I'd expect if the bugs are in the C64, they'd be in the Atari versions.
    That I remember (wow, it's been a while): upon level up, you could pick a spell. However, I just checked: Monks, Priests, Wizards, Rangers, and Rogues could cast fireflash (spell table here). Maybe you were too low level to fight him?

    Actually, upon reflection, I think if you spam dissolve or weakness on him, it lowers his armor class enough to do damage.
     
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  10. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Yeah, I'll get the Black Lord next time.
    I downloaded the Atari ST versions of P1-3 and tested P2 with the Steem emulator. Looks like it is not a cracked version, since only a couple of overland areas were explored and there was no annoying "cool" message from a cracker group. The 16 bit versions really look much better than the 8-bit versions, so I'll try the Atari ST version.
    Only downside with Steem is that it takes quite a long time to start; longer than WinUAE, but it's possible I did something wrong (I need to read the instructions more carefully).
     
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  11. BLOBERT Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

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    BROS POSERTED THIS BEFORE PHANTASIE THREE WAS MY FIRST RPG

    AMIGA VERSION IS GOOOD BUT LIKE ANOTYHER BRO SAID YOU CANT PLAY TWO ON IT

    VERY GENERIC BUT FUN
     
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  12. Daemongar Arcane Patron

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    I don't know if you've seen this but I only saw this last weekend, and now I'm kind of obsessed with repeating this. I didn't even know it could be done, and I know I must have come pretty close in the eight or so tries before I gave up so long ago. Does the Steem emulator support save states?
     
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  13. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Yes. It's an excellent piece of software and much easier to use than an Amiga emulator. Very quick too, now that I've learnt how to use it. You can set it to "Resume previous state" when starting it, so restarting the program it takes you instantly back in the game.

    I also discovered that the P1 disk images I found were from a game in progress, but fortunately there is a utility with which you can start a brand new game.
    So it looks like the Atari ST versions of the Phantasie games are the optimal ones to use, both for the audiovisuals and being able to use the same party in all three games. EDIT: and reseting the game. Either that option was not in the Amiga versions or else I was too clueless when I tried the Amiga versions of P1 and P3.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2014
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  14. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Funny thing happened...I've been giving my Priest 3 shares of the XP and only 1 for the others, so that the Priest will get Resurrection ASAP. But the irony is that when I last stopped in town my Wizard was only a few hundred XP short of making a new level. When I entered the starter dungeon again the party was surprised by a party of Rangers, one of which did 9 damage on my 8 HP Wizard. So if I had given my Wizard his due share of XP that spell from the enemy Ranger would not have killed him.

    Incidentally, I think the Phantasie games would have been perfect for handhelds/tablets. They are fun, simple and turn based, and most importantly, they have auto-maps. Would have been a nice game to play while on the subway.
     
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  15. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    So how is the Dispel Undead spell supposed to work in this game? I've used it against Skeletons a few times and I can't see that it makes any difference.

    The Atari ST version looks and sounds nice, but one thing annyoys me - having to use the mouse for everything. Using the keyboard in the DOS version much much quicker. Also, on the emulator the Reset button is right next to the Save States button. Not funny when you hit the wrong button after having cleared out a dungeon! :argh:
     
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  16. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Phantasie seems to be a largely forgotten series, since I can't find much when Googling. Just about the only noteworthy mentions are here on the Codex and on CRPG Addict's blog.

    But I found someone doing an Amiga conversion (from Atari ST) of P2, but like so many other projects it seems to have been abandoned. Oh well, the difference between the ST and the Amiga is marginal enough that it's not really worth the effort IMO. Easier to just use an Atari ST emulator.
     
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  17. Deuce Traveler Prestigious Gentleman 2012 Newfag Patron

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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    It's been so many years ago that I cannot remember how the Dispel Undead spell worked (or did not work). I don't know about skeletons, but for some reason I think it did damage to vampires. I'm playing with my memory of this game from the more than 20 years I played it.

    The games are quite simple, although there is more complexity in the exploration. I remember having a good time chasing down the clues as I searched every outdoor and dungeon tile for secrets. If I remember right, dungeons that you have previously cleaned out can feel pretty boring as wiping out the set encounters ensure that they will not reset. Random encounters may still be an uncommon problem, though.

    Check the keyboard settings for the Atari ST version you are playing, as I believe that there are keyboard inputs you should be able to use. That was the time I was a keyboard snob and frowned upon the latest mouse-interface fad due to the slowness that you are referring. I still prefer the keyboard interface to mouse interface for many of these older games.
     
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  18. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    After some experimentation it's seems to be a rather binary thing. Either it affects all the undead or none. And if affected they either run or dissolve, in which cases you get 0 XP.

    You have the choice of saving a dungeon when exiting, so you can always leave it unexplored. But for grinding I think it's better to just move around on the surface, close to a city. At least that's what I'm doing to build up my recently resurrected Wizard who was only lvl 1 when killed. But he has almost perfect stats, so I think it will be worth it. One rather annoying thing is that you only get increase in magic points when visiting an Inn after you have cast spells. So with my playing style - explore as much as possible before returning and conserve magic - I think I know why I had problems with The Dark Lord last time I played: not enough magic points to cast enough Fireflash IV to kill him.

    Doesn't seem to be possible. Hitting any key but the Enter key just produced bleeps.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2014
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  19. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Fuck, the final battle in P1 is annoying!
    First The Black Lord's spells always does 79 damage in the to my wizard who has 64 hit points. No randomization means it's a hopeless task with only one guy casting Fireflash IV.
    To make matter worse there seems to be no way to rest the summoned Elementals. The Fire Elemantal starts with 20 Magic and knows Fireflash IV, which would have been a huge help. But only now do I realize he has run out of Magic, after squandering it on Dark Knights.
    I recovered Nicodemus' Wand, but there doesn't seem to be any way to use it against Nicodemus.

    Oh well, I'll head back to Starville, replace Fire Elemental with Water and make another attempt.

    EDIT: Grrrrr! On the return my Wizard still takes 79 damage. WTF?
    And the events with Nicodemus firing his wand at the party still fires. :roll:
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2014
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  20. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Well, Phantasie 1 was a decent game until the end game.
    For most of the game (after my Wizard got enough HP to survive any battle) the game was fairly easy, with no character deaths. But the final battle is incredibly hard and the opening barrage from Nikademus is not random, so if you're unlucky your Wizard will always die.
    So I grinded him up another level, and he survived, and I was able to defeat Nikademus wth two party members dead.

    But there seems to be no fucking victory screen on the Atari ST version!

    In the DOS version this happens:
    [​IMG]

    According to Andrew "I love FAQing around" Schultz:
    I assume the "which doesn't have this" refers to the actual victory screen. What happened to me was that my party just exited the dungeon, with no victory screen. And nothing after defeating Nikademus either.
    Damned annoying when you don't get a victory screen, which kind of sours the experience.
    Oh well, on to Phantasie 2.

    EDIT 1: I wonder if I screwed up by going after the Wand first, and then leave the dungeon?
    Apparantly you can only wave the wand when you find it, and that spot is then closed off as you are teleported to a secluded room where Filmon gives you a scroll. So I can't get back to that room anymore, and Using the Wand while in town only produces a sound effect.

    EDIT 2: looking at CRPG Addict's video of the end game of the DOS version there seems to be other differences. He didn't get the option to pick up the wand when walking over that spot, and when finally cornering Nikademus he just attacks physicall instead of casting a Firebolt IV.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2014
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  21. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Come on, didn't anyone finish the Atari ST version? Did you get a victory screen after defeating Dark Lord?
    Starting to wonder of the lack of victory screen may be some sort of copy protection, but that seems very far fetched.
     
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  22. Clockwork Knight Arcane

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    Judging from the context, seems to me that it refers to the P2 plug at the end. It's considered ironic because it is only present in the DOS version of P1, but there is no DOS version of P2. In other words:

    Atari ST: no victory screen

    DOS: victory screen with "see you in Phantasie 2" at the end.

    Commodore: victory screen without "see you in Phantasie 2" at the end.
     
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  23. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    I guess that must be it.
    P2 recognizes my characters as "Heroes of Gelnor", but annoyingly enough there's no sign of the Divine Spell that Zeus was supposed to give the party. But I guess I can still find it in P2. I have some vague recollection of Divine Spells in P3 as well.

    Incidentally my party lost all items and almost all gold and XP when transfering over, but retained their skills.
     
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  24. octavius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Damned, the penalties for aging is severe in these games!
    My characters have aged about 15 years since they started adventuring, and now Crusher, my Ogre Fighter has turned 29 and he lost 5 STR, 3 DEX, and 3 CON. Nasty...
    Looks like I have to retire him.

    So using monster characters seems like not such a good idea. Who said diversity paid off?
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014
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  25. Deuce Traveler Prestigious Gentleman 2012 Newfag Patron

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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Yeah it's crap, but I noticed that the main Erol Flynn looking character on the cover is silver-haired so I guess age is expected to be advanced in this game. I'm not sure if there is anything to reverse aging outside a hex editor, but it might be worth looking into it on forums now that you beat the first game, but not so much that you spoil the second.
     
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