Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

For all discussion on all the previous Bard's Tale games: the classic 1980s games (Bard's Tale, II: Destiny Knight, & III: Thief of Fate) & the humorous Bard's Tale (2004) spin off.

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Gizmo
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » June 20th, 2017, 8:10 pm

ZiN wrote:
June 20th, 2017, 3:08 pm
So what others form BT2 would you like to see?
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by ssfsx17 » July 7th, 2017, 2:08 pm

Signature elements for me, as compared to other Wizardry-family games:

- The Bard class is awesome. Breathing fire horns for crowd control, or just making everyone attack twice, and other such great abilities.
- Heavy emphasis on guest NPCs. Sadly, BT3 didn't have a dedicated slot for Hawkslayer, so I generally went without him.
- Utterly evil and wicked dungeons. The only game series that tries to match BT for how evil its dungeons are is probably Etrian Odyssey.
- Massive battles. Not just the signature 396 berserkers, but also fights against groups of 20+ enemies. BT3 went quite overboard with how many groups of enemies per encounter though.
- The spellcaster class system. It helped to make you feel that there was constantly something to look forward to at the ultra-high levels, and to feel that those characters were irreplaceable.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Alation » September 6th, 2017, 3:43 am

One of the most iconic parts of BT3 for me was the Hawkslayer story, and how it was revealed out of order in the different dimensions.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Drool » September 9th, 2017, 2:50 pm

Alation wrote:
September 6th, 2017, 3:43 am
One of the most iconic parts of BT3 for me was the Hawkslayer story, and how it was revealed out of order in the different dimensions.
That was probably my second favorite. The story of Lucencia really got me.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Orpheus the Bard » October 28th, 2017, 8:46 pm

Hello, haven't been here in a good while due to the ultra slow development of this game. Figured I might need to check back in today, because of premonition I got concerning last BT game. With all the older versions BT before it.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Falkentyne » November 26th, 2017, 12:29 am

Bard's Tale 3 really had a nice story to it, and it felt indeed like Tarjan had just thrown the realms and the Outer realms into total Chaos. The feels for what your party had to try to fix, and the revenge they desired, I haven't really seen in any other game even today. Even the "banes" look from the "Heroes" in Ultima 7 Serpent Isle didn't come close to this.

But definitely Sinster street in Bard's Tale 1, and the night encounters. Being a random autistic kid in highschool who was fascinated by RPG's and scared of evil demonic beings definitely had an effect. BT1 just felt like a nice classic D&D Adventure; very few religious overtures like the entirety of Bard's Tale II (besides the riddle in Mangar's tower and the Harkyn's Tower riddle), and not as "Campy" as BT2.

And "You are on a blue highway."

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by SuperDave17 » November 28th, 2017, 11:21 pm

Falkentyne wrote:
November 26th, 2017, 12:29 am
Bard's Tale 3 really had a nice story to it, and it felt indeed like Tarjan had just thrown the realms and the Outer realms into total Chaos. The feels for what your party had to try to fix, and the revenge they desired, I haven't really seen in any other game even today. Even the "banes" look from the "Heroes" in Ultima 7 Serpent Isle didn't come close to this.

But definitely Sinster street in Bard's Tale 1, and the night encounters. Being a random autistic kid in highschool who was fascinated by RPG's and scared of evil demonic beings definitely had an effect. BT1 just felt like a nice classic D&D Adventure; very few religious overtures like the entirety of Bard's Tale II (besides the riddle in Mangar's tower and the Harkyn's Tower riddle), and not as "Campy" as BT2.

And "You are on a blue highway."
When I was a teenager, after I had learned of the torture and murder of Alliria, one of my key goals in life was to finally find Tarjan and waste him just for that. For Cyanis too. It was what kept me going when I was struggling through Kinestia, Tenebrosia, Tarmitia, and finally Malefia. And when it was all said and done, there was a part of me that thought that Tarjan got off too easy, and wishing Alliria, Valarian and Lanatir could be brought back to physical life.

It was like, what if Sauron got to do a lot more damage before finally going down, and at some point cornered Galadriel and had his way with her? That's how hard the story hit me back then. It's a rare story that's really willing to entertain that "what if ..." that many fantasy writers and game writers wouldn't dream of touching, but BT3 took it by the horns. And the end result is a really haunting and poignant story.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by ZiN » November 30th, 2017, 6:12 am

Falkentyne wrote:
November 26th, 2017, 12:29 am
BT1 just felt like a nice classic D&D Adventure...
And compared to that BT3 felt like PlaneScape:
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Note, that this was years before the wonderful PlaneScape™ setting got released.
SuperDave17 wrote:
November 28th, 2017, 11:21 pm
When I was a teenager, after I had learned of the torture and murder of Alliria, one of my key goals in life was to finally find Tarjan and waste him just for that. For Cyanis too.
Image
Cyanis have survived and perhaps recovered over time and might be still around in BT4. As someone who saw everything with his own eyes, he would make a very interesting character.
SuperDave17 wrote:
November 28th, 2017, 11:21 pm
And when it was all said and done, there was a part of me that thought that Tarjan got off too easy...
Indeed. And by the look of things, Tarjan is already active again, 150 years after BT3, while the 7 new gods who defeated him, got banned.

Man, I really hope the writers of BT4 did their homework.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Orpheus the Bard » January 19th, 2018, 11:42 pm

That tendency to find your way by feeling your way instead of looking around, because initially, you can only see what is right in front of you. Something, I have ben meaning to put up on the board her.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Orpheus the Bard » January 20th, 2018, 12:17 am

ZiN wrote:
November 30th, 2017, 6:12 am
Falkentyne wrote:
November 26th, 2017, 12:29 am
BT1 just felt like a nice classic D&D Adventure...
And compared to that BT3 felt like PlaneScape:
Image
Note, that this was years before the wonderful PlaneScape™ setting got released.
SuperDave17 wrote:
November 28th, 2017, 11:21 pm
When I was a teenager, after I had learned of the torture and murder of Alliria, one of my key goals in life was to finally find Tarjan and waste him just for that. For Cyanis too.
Image
Cyanis have survived and perhaps recovered over time and might be still around in BT4. As someone who saw everything with his own eyes, he would make a very interesting character.
SuperDave17 wrote:
November 28th, 2017, 11:21 pm
And when it was all said and done, there was a part of me that thought that Tarjan got off too easy...
Indeed. And by the look of things, Tarjan is already active again, 150 years after BT3, while the 7 new gods who defeated him, got banned.

Man, I really hope the writers of BT4 did their homework.
I still have my copy of Bard's Tale Two The Destiny Knight after digging them both out of storage last night. The two large Floppys, all the documentation, along with the attractively molded plastic caseing was put together in. Both floppys are clearly labeled as BT Two, both Boot, Character & Dungeons Disks on both sides. A & B. So, My previous complaint isn't as obvious as I thought. Where I though the wrong version of Boot or Dunegon disk was pakaged togther. Still a label doesn't prove an thing and that problem I had was really happening. There was no way my party of adventures were about to use the starter dungoen or leave town.

I also still have the attractive cardboard folder made for Thief of Fate with the same colourful illustrations inside and the map as well. (Which does really hint at the rollowver effect. I always use to find the shrine by passing the tavern and encampment only from the side where you can access them when they are right next to each other. Going past the encampment first and then tavern until I am at the tree and then turning right will put the healing shrine a few steps in front of me. This is why I think my method for finding things in this game is flawed since I reckon I might have passed closer to the shrine while locating the other two places after heading straight from the outer wall of the Skara Brae ruins left of the entrance side.[/spoiler] ) The Code Wheel, ( So, is this a problem for the latest version? You know, there is no code wheel attached to this version, so? ) I'm not sure what it does now. I get a head aches just looking at the damn thing. I also still have both disks and no problme with this version of the game what so ever. I might even suspect that the graphic were better on the earlier version.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by rasiel » January 26th, 2018, 10:40 pm

Hallmark moments for me:

- Praying that the grey dragon hanging outside Harky's would tear into a member rather than breathe on everyone
- Just doing nothing outside in the daytime to regen spell points because I was too broke for Roscoe's
- Re-rolling for what seemed like ages hoping for good stats when creating a new character
- Crossing fingers my MIBL would do enough damage to the Berserkers

I remember it would put me in a hugely bad mood if at the end of a successful grind I took a wrong turn in the dungeons, got lost and wasted all my spell points before I found my way out (forcing me to reboot and lose the progress).... all part of the fun!

Only game that I've clocked in more hours than BT1 (never got into 2 and 3) has been Civ. That's saying a lot!

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by SuperDave17 » January 28th, 2018, 12:20 am

Picking up on that theme ...

The last battle against Mangar. Hoping that Thor got one of the Demon Lords first, and then crossing your fingers that the other Demon Lord then attacked Thor or did something anything besides petrify one of the party members I wanted to transfer to BT2. And also hoping I could off the three Vampire Lords without any level draining, and that Mangar didn't kill a party member with DEST.

Granted, that's a lot to hope for. And yes, my characters were backed up. But hey, I'd reload more or less until I could import everybody with the quest xp bonus for transfer to BT2. That made the battle itself quite a worry fest, and exciting at the same time, in a way that few game-ending battles have ever been since then.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Orpheus the Bard » January 28th, 2018, 3:45 am

Orpheus the Bard wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 11:42 pm
That tendency to find your way by feeling your way instead of looking around, because initially, you can only see what is right in front of you. Something, I have ben meaning to put up on the board her.
I was hoping players would identify with this. Bard's Tale was one of the few games, like MazeMaster it's predeccesor & games like Eye of the Beholder (For Dungeons & Dragons.) where players learn to find their way around in different way because you just can't see anything unless you facing it. Like a horse wearing blinders. Even though, their is very slight sensation of buildings going past while wandering the streets of Skara Brae (or similar town.) or a well lit dungeon or path in the deep woods.

YOU still find your self employing the talents of blind-person to find yourself around.

Another thing perculiar to this game and some thing I wish to see the last of is the save game system. It doesn't save you game at all, you game stays the same until you teleport somewhere else & even then. Since I haven't played far into the game I ages. You just can't do that in this game. The game it self never progress's further unless the party has levelled sufficiently or it only appears to. So, only can save you party in the game and only when they have returned to the encampment or adventurers guild building. Saying that it doesn't out that at for me.

Reason why I stopped playing, but since I have ben using the Inter-Players with my faithful Hobbit Bard. The In terplayers being Iron Pants, Green Arrow, Shadow, Gwendoylen, Rune-Flinger and my bard the name I use on this forum. Sometimes, I find they are only at second or third level when reloading them, but my Bard, is something like eighth or nineth level at the same time. I know I used to do this on purpose when playing earlier version of the game a long long time ago, using the first four or five of them as fodder (Who I would eventually just let die & bring in new ones.) for the monsters & barbarians, rogue spell casters while the Bard was safe out of harms way most of the time as he levelled high enough to carry the whole party victory.

Yet, finding all my work wasted now, puts me right off. How do I avoid this or I think this method for saving you game is no longer in use even now. It wasn't like that in the last (unofficial....) Bard's Tale game.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Drool » January 28th, 2018, 2:41 pm

Orpheus the Bard wrote:
January 28th, 2018, 3:45 am
I was hoping players would identify with this. Bard's Tale was one of the few games, like MazeMaster it's predeccesor & games like Eye of the Beholder (For Dungeons & Dragons.) where players learn to find their way around in different way because you just can't see anything unless you facing it.
Well... even then, it wasn't exactly unheard of. After all, Bard's Tale was designed specifically to go after Wizardry. Might & Magic also had the same view. And, of course, every first person shooter from Wolfenstein 3D on down.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by thebruce » January 29th, 2018, 6:16 am

Orpheus the Bard wrote:
January 28th, 2018, 3:45 am
Orpheus the Bard wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 11:42 pm
That tendency to find your way by feeling your way instead of looking around, because initially, you can only see what is right in front of you. Something, I have ben meaning to put up on the board her.
I was hoping players would identify with this. Bard's Tale was one of the few games, like MazeMaster it's predeccesor & games like Eye of the Beholder (For Dungeons & Dragons.) where players learn to find their way around in different way because you just can't see anything unless you facing it. Like a horse wearing blinders. Even though, their is very slight sensation of buildings going past while wandering the streets of Skara Brae (or similar town.) or a well lit dungeon or path in the deep woods.

YOU still find your self employing the talents of blind-person to find yourself around.
Yeah good catch, missed that. That's another aspect of the originals that encouraged hand mapping the dungeons as part of the experience. If you make a mistake you have to know where you are and not get lost. You're much more likely to 'recognize' where you are the farther ahead you can see. With only 1 or 2 squares, you could theoretically be in many more places, known or unknown. I think that aspect of the dungeon crawl will be lost in BTIV.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » January 29th, 2018, 8:31 am

thebruce wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 6:16 am
Yeah good catch, missed that. That's another aspect of the originals that encouraged hand mapping the dungeons as part of the experience.
This is from the Grimrock devs: (Both games have the option to permanently disable the automap at the outset.) 8-)

Image

[Full Size]: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/s/23e ... _paper.jpg

It'd be nice to see one of these for BT4; but also to actually NEED it; or in the very least, to have a similar game mode as Grimrock 1&2 did.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Zombra » January 29th, 2018, 10:28 am

Gizmo wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 8:31 am
It'd be nice to see [pen & paper hand mapping] for BT4; but also to actually NEED it.
Gonna have to "no thank you" on this. Laboriously copying down information the game already gave me isn't why I enjoy CRPGs, and wasn't ever why I enjoyed CRPGs. YMMV.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » January 29th, 2018, 11:25 am

Zombra wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 10:28 am
Gizmo wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 8:31 am
It'd be nice to see [official, themed, complimentary graph paper] for BT4; but also to actually NEED it.
Gonna have to "no thank you" on this. Laboriously copying down information the game already gave me isn't why I enjoy CRPGs, and wasn't ever why I enjoyed CRPGs. YMMV.
Fixed.

Dungeon crawlers aren't cRPGs. They are about crawling a dungeon. Exploring those maps is the paramount activity. The characters are practically incidental. They facilitate the death mechanic. A few DCs (later) began using them for exposition, or (better) for stat checked awareness of the immediate area. In some games it was trap & secret door detection, in at least one other, it was even for item detection (shelf contents might depend on if they noticed it or not).

In any case, the party is a combat machine—with variable attack & defense options... but they usually don't otherwise matter much to the gameplay. It's about puzzling out the map; and the monsters are typically just an impediment.
Last edited by Gizmo on January 29th, 2018, 12:05 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by thebruce » January 29th, 2018, 11:27 am

Gizmo wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 8:31 am
thebruce wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 6:16 am
Yeah good catch, missed that. That's another aspect of the originals that encouraged hand mapping the dungeons as part of the experience.
This is from the Grimrock devs: (Both games have the option to permanently disable the automap at the outset.) 8-)

It'd be nice to see one of these for BT4; but also to actually NEED it; or in the very least, to have a similar game mode as Grimrock 1&2 did.
Flew by the point - it's one thing to provide graph paper, it's another thing to provide a gameplay style that encourages it, thus the point about the how much is seen. In the beginning you get 1 or 2 squares - continue from my comment above. If you see everything to a great distance, well sure, you could map if you want, but it's more unlikely that you'll to. And AFAIR, inXile is providing graphc paper with BT4, as a tier bonus. But will the game itself encourage mapping?

As far as game mode, that goes back to the discussion about a hardcore or equivalent mode (which could incorporate save mechanics, grid mechanics, etc).
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » January 29th, 2018, 11:34 am

thebruce wrote:
January 29th, 2018, 11:27 am
Flew by the point - it's one thing to provide graph paper, it's another thing to provide a gameplay style that encourages it, thus the point about the how much is seen.
Not at all. It's unfortunate that most of the market audience —to whom they must sell, expects a map, and can't be bothered to make it themselves. They will search online for someone else's. So it no longer makes sense (for the mass-market) to encourage mapping in the design... :twisted: unless the game auto-generates most of the map-layouts for each install of the game (making each install unique); and in the case of user created maps...new maps for each newly created party. This is possible to do in one's own maps made for Grimrock 2; though it's not a turn-key option in the LoG2 editor. It must be scripted.

But even then (with a randomized map)... If the game (or the game mod) takes a determinable seed value for the maps... people would still upload walkthroughs & maps, along with the seed and how to use it. :(
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I remember once opening a paper-back book in a thrift shop, many years ago, and finding a hand drawn map on graph paper. It was unlabeled, but I quickly recognized it as the temple layout in Raaka-Tu (a text based adventure that pre-dates Bard's Tale). The design of one of the hallways (with its trapped cherub) was a big tip off; as was the chamber with an invulnerable gargoyle —that required a poisoner's handiwork to pass. 8-)
Last edited by Gizmo on January 29th, 2018, 12:20 pm, edited 11 times in total.

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