Review by Bobo The Clown
Reviewed: 02/27/01 | Updated: 02/27/01
Greatest Door Game Ever
Legend of the Red Dragon, or LORD as it's nicknamed, stands today atop a smoldering pile of ash. It is one of the few relics from the BBS age, along with message boards, that has survived to the present day Internet. How does a simple text and ansi-graphic based role playing game do this? Interactivity with actual people in a fantasy world and solid gameplay.
It certaintly isn't the storyline that keeps popularity up. In LORD, you play the role of an adventurer who must slay the evil Red Dragon lurking the woods, that has a knack of eating small little children. That's about all you're given, and the ending is similiarily lackluster.
No, the real appeal of LORD lies partly in its gameplay. Solid and easy gameplay is present everywhere in the game. All commands are menu driven, and executed with the upmost of ease. Even a novice gamer can follow the procedures giving for buying equipment, fighting enemies, and interacting in the local tavern.
At the beginning of the game, you get the pick between three classes - the wizard, death knight, and thief. If you take the time, the wizard is by far the best class. However, it does start out weak. The death knight is fairly easy to raise up, and is a better character overall then the thief and wizard, but it can not heal itself in battle like the wizard, making it weaker. The thief starts out ultra-fast, because of his ability to steal high level equipment from stores, but he's the weakest of the three characters near the end of the game. First timers should use the thief, pros the wizard.
Fighting plays a major aspect in the game, and like everything else, it is simple. There's only three to four options in each fight - attack, run, or use your special attack(s). Magicians can also magic skills. There's a few hidden options and secrets in the battle scene, also. You get a limit of fights per day, which are replenished at the start of the next day. This encourages users to log on each day.
Interactivity plays a large role in LORD. You're in direct competition with five to one hundred other players in the game. You can form alliances, but for the most part, it's a free-for-all. You can ruthlessly attack ANY character, if you have enough money. Rivalries and chatter in-game keep the action brisk, and keep you coming back each day for more.
The downfalls of LORD are quite obvious. Except for some ANSI art, the graphics are text based. There is no sound. Finding a game can be a bit hard; looking around on Telnet boards on the internet is essential for a lively game.
Another advantage of LORD: it's extreme customization. If you host a LORD game, you can custom nearly anything, ranging from the main city's name to forest fights per day to prices for equipment. Even can even add fun mini games, called IGM's, for people to visit. You also have the power to bug someone at any time for any reason :)
If you can find a popular LORD game on Telenet or a local BBS, you probably won't be able to stop playing. It is an outstanding example of how multiplayer gaming existed (and still exists) without the Internet. Any serious game should play LORD at least once.
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