Conquering the Pile of Shame, Week 7

Another week and the gradual steps towards knocking over my next game continue Fallout 2 continued to be a major focus, with a small amount of Neverwinter Nights and Heretic.

Heretic (Raven Software, 1994)

Heretic continues to confuse me. I can’t decide whether I like it or dislike it. The level design is jarring, lacks any sense of flow, yet they are beautifully designed and really capture the essence of the setting.

One thing that is really starting to become apparent is the notable lack of diversity in weapons and enemies. I’m almost at the end of the first quarter of the game, and I’ve spent 90 percent of the time using one weapon, facing a total of four different enemies — imps, golems, skeleton warriors and sorcerers.

At the very least, I’ve come to one conclusion about the game — this is one that probably appeals to those with a nostalgic attachment, or curiosity. I personally wouldn’t recommend it to modern gamers, unless you are particularly keen on seeing one of the early forks in the FPS genre.

Fallout 2 (Black Isle Studios, 1998)

You’re not wrong Vic.

This fight. This damn fight. While in Redding, I purchased the deed to Wanamingo Mine, on the agreement that I would clear it of the beasts that give the place its name. Well, they hit like a truck, and there’s a lot of them. Thanks to some very shitty RNG, I spent most of my evening reloading to try and beat these bastards, but eventually succeeded, gaining a couple levels in the process and wrapping up my time in Redding. Next up — New Reno.

New Reno is a classic sin city of drugs, sex, gambling and just about any other vice you can think of. It is ruled by four ruthless gangs, and so far my time in town has consisted of trying not to get shanked by one thug or another.

New Reno is one of the locations in Fallout 2 that really shines, and is a great example of the hopelessness of the post-apocalyptic wasteland. There is so much about New Reno that is disgraceful and unethical, but what are you going to do? This is one of the few relatively safe settlements in the wasteland. It’s better than dying out in the desert, right?

I did enjoy the above dialogue with a character named Mason, who asked me to find his friend Lloyd. The writers have poked fun at themselves for the lack of diversity in the character models in the game, due to the memory limitations in old games.

At some point in about 1989 I played my first videogames on a Sinclair ZX Spectrum. This was the beginning of a lifetime obsession with games...