Quest for Glory: So You Want to Be Nostalgic

Yesterday I had a grievous migraine that had me sobbing from the pain. I went to bed early and woke up around two in the morning, when I found an SMS from my brother, about THIS. I had to go back to bed to stop myself from buying them and playing immediately.

Quest for Glory was my favourite game series, and to this day, I don’t think there has been a single successful attempt to top it. Not even Assassin’s Creed, which I went fairly nuts over until it was hit by the shockingly NaNoWriMo problem of character show-stealing.

The first game has the title, “So You Want to Be a Hero”, which is a phrase that I have always loved. Quite appropriately, you play a young man who had a positive response to the question, and has recently graduated from a correspondence school for young adventurers. There are three classes, which later expanded to four, sort of. I don’t remember now if you ever got to actually create a paladin, or if you had to become one properly through the second game.

It’s a fairly simple story at the start, but it’s Lori Ann and Corey Cole. You can’tjust have a hero who quite innocently stumbles into a rich world of adventure. There’s always plenty going on, to the point that the first game actually contains references to things not only in the second game, but in the fifth. This is a series that went from this:

To this:

Over the course of about nine years. It’s an amazing experience to play all five of the games with the same hero. What you do actually affects the story, in a way that games like Fallout 3 have overthought and largely failed to do. Even when those things are part of linear plot development, you feel accomplished and satisfied that you have affected the game world.

Each of the games has a clear influence from different cultures and mythology. My favourites are still the fourth and fifth, thanks to the Slavic and Greco-Mediterranean themes (and the in-universe version of the Cthulhu mythos).

This is really just an excuse to gush mildly and come up with a post to fill out my horrendously dry month. Right now, I’m playing the VGA version of QFG 1, with a wizard named Schmendrick. It is midday on Day 2, and he’s just killed a goblin on his way to Erana’s Peace. He is feeling mighty proud of himself, but he’ll get obliterated if he runs into a brigand before he can learn an aggressive spell more affective than Zap (which only charges his weapon, it’s not Zio or anything).

Just in case someone is reading this and actually recognises this series–the GOG bundle contains the VGA version of 1, the EGA version of 2, and I have yet to test the well-known bugs in the former and QFG 4 (whose bugs are INFAMOUS). I intend to play AGD‘s VGA version of QFG 2 rather than the EGA. Mostly because I was following it throughout its development and have as many fan-points invested there as in the original series.

And because it features the hero import/export stuff that will make my journey from 1 to 5 seamless and AWESOME.

Seriously though, go buy this series. It’s $10. That’s less than I paid for the Anthology ten years ago.

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