Growing up, I would spend vast amounts of time squirreled away in my bedroom sat in front of a screen either building my coding skills or pounding the keyboard playing one game or another. I remember managing to save a vast amount of paper-round wages to allow me to buy an Amiga 500 Plus, and from that day, the days of rubbish graphics and blocky sound became ancient history.
One of the games that I spend an unhealthy amount of time playing was Eye of the Beholder. For those that never had the pleasure of falling on this series of games, they are, what is referred to now as, a Classic Dungeon Crawler. The premise being that you take control of a party of 4, making your way through dungeons solving puzzles, finding loot, killing baddies and reaching your goal. The world is navigated over a 3D grid based map over multiple levels access either by stairs, pits or even teleportation spells. Characters within your party are based on race, class and skill, with each being able to gain experience points during the game allowing them to ‘level up’.
Recently, while perusing various game sites looking for a good deal on a Steam game, I came across Legend of Grimrock. At first I didn’t really take much notice until I spotted the tag ‘Dungeon Crawler’ and my eyes lit up. Could this be what I think it is….
A quick click on the link, 2 minutes of watching the trailer and it was in my basket ready to go. The game was downloaded on Steam (and a DRM copy just in case), my headphones went on and the DND signal was given to ‘her in doors’ and I was away.
Within 10 minutes I felt like I was 12 again! My homework still waiting in my school bag, a stack of graph paper to my right with a sharp pencil and a rubber (just in case).
Thankfully with this game, the requirement for graph paper is optional and allows you to switch an option on to have an onscreen map book that automatically draws your maps as you progress through the dungeons (a massive time saver but if you feel the need to head right down Memory Lane just switch the option off and you are on your own).
If you fancy taking up the challenge, or wish to know a little more, head on over to the LoG site (http://www.grimrock.net/) and have a poke around. So far I have had many a late night playing LoG and when the headphones go on, that’s it. (A tap on the shoulder some time later tells me it’s now way past my bedtime.)
So, that’s it. Go play. Give my apologies to your family and if you have the responsibility of feeding people, set an alarm on your smart phone, switch it to vibrate and tape it to your forehead. I hope this post doesn’t destroy your life and as usual, constructive criticism and suggestions are welcome.