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Since Sacred 1, version 1.0


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Still have the disks.

I recall 7 patches, but that may be an exaggeration. Took days to load over a rotary phone connection, and often you'd have to start all over again. They finally fixed the whiskey cave quest, you could leave the cave of robbers without a invisible hammer wacking away on the side of your helmet. Then along came the Underground consolidation disk, the "gold", and the hammer comes back.....tink...tink....tink

 

Raised my son on Sacred. We learned together. I knew nothing of the net or games. We'd leave the runes on the ground, the ones we couldn't use because we didn't know you could trade them in. Imagine a game world filled with sparkling runes.... Those first games were crapshoots- you developed what the game randomly gave you in runes. I wonder if anyone ever tried that?

Got Sacred 2 on Xbox and PC when they arrived, and thanks to Dark Matters have the expansions not formerly available in North America. It was years before we figured out how to install Sacred 2 on the PC, but we had the Xbox until my son was old enough to do the installation himself. He was around 6 when Sacred One arrived.

 

If there ever was a Camelot of gaming, it was Ascaron. What they tried to do, how much of themselves they put into software, a depth very seldom seen today. I still miss them, miss what they were and what they tried and how much they thought of the player/buyer. And it was just hacknslash, right? The huge variation in character building is simply stunning, especially when you look at today's games which are to games what the condensed version of Mark Twain is to the original work.

Well, I can't actually speak your language. You who explored the builds in this forum and the wiki, who computed all the math, flipped the designer's directions on their ears so many times- then published the results. Amazing, outstanding. I'm not talking one, or even a roomfull of bright geeks- it was hundreds, thousands, a million- and you all spoke a common language and understood one another. No, I'm not one of those- of you. But I do love Sacred, both of them, and still play them.

Technology has come exponentially so much farther since Sacred 1, and yet the choices and the variations in the industry have not grown, if anything, we've retreated. We have better pictures, the loading rates are fast, but only very rarely is a game as good. Most are not as good. They cost much more, last 1/20th as long, and are not as good. Worst of all, once played through, there isn't much reason to return. It's the Ferris wheel ride you figured out the first time around.

If someone were to make a Sacred type game using today's tech superiority- I'd buy it in a second. But they haven't. I'm beginning to think they won't. Some marketing genius has dumbstruck the world into believing the public doesn't like choices and thinking. What a maroon, what a mistake.

I'm just an old fart wondering aloud. But heck, if I miss them, how it must be for those of you who understood so much more of how they worked and how they were made?

 

munk

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

We'd leave the runes on the ground, the ones we couldn't use because we didn't know you could trade them in. Imagine a game world filled with sparkling runes.... Those first games were crapshoots- you developed what the game randomly gave you in runes. I wonder if anyone ever tried that?

 

Ah, the memory of figuring out that my gladiator could only equip the orange items so I only picked up those. Inevitably, I had a crash and went in search of a patch which altered how items appeared on the ground and I progressed to better ways.

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I know this is treason, heresy amongst the sophisticates, but every word you said is true, Podgie_Bear.

(..and a perfect example is what Beth studios did with Skyrim, not half the game of Oblivion. Same trend. Pulled the wool over the eyes, and the ones who noticed and said something about it left the official Beth forum after a few weeks, not bothering to counter the chorus of yay sayer and gameoftheyear devoted critics. I guess I should do another thread rather than pour all that out, but choices, character interaction, and character development all shrunk drastically. Todd said after Oblivion that he finally figured out how to 'make a game', but the truth is he finally figured out how Not to Make a Game and have it pass for one. That universal AI they were so proud of was quietly dropped. I think of it as being alone in a vast world. Nothing the lead character does matters nor is noticed by any npc.. The game is done when the last cave is explored.)

 

Getting back to Sacred then, the game did not talk down to the audience. It may not have had much AI- but npc's did change in their response to the Demon lady, for instance, and they had so many other seriously great assets anyway, like real character development AND a vast world and variety of actions and spells/techniques, which the user put together. Would anyone expect Shakespeare to make a light abridged play? (even his farces are considered masterpeices..) Human beings who went to concerts, enjoyed plays, novels, and other works of art expected an occasional challenge, and young people knew they had some work to do to come up to the creation. That was the fun, the adventure, the....meaning. We've come a long way from the day when a huge crowd of people would wait on the docks for the ship to arrive with the latest chapter from Mark Twain or Charles Dickens. Those weren't snob crowds- they were everybody!

 

Why are we making games that are built for the lcd and assuming they cannot understand and enjoy a great work? Games have the potential to become the next, er, bring in a french word here, they are very good at finding nouns for these things, staple of entertainment. Most recently, Radio- to movies to games. Gaming is or has the potential to be an interactive art form, unprecedented and having aspects from all the other fields. So new and so Giant.

 

I'm not a highbrow guy. I just think when you want to listen to the Beatles or Bach, you should hear them, and not a soft version. You don't need dumbed down Mozart, Faulkner, Hemmingway, Celine, or Cohen brothers. You can make art and make it mass marketed. People like great things. There are many wonderful movies that have taken me decades to understand, and enjoy on other levels than when I first saw them. That doesn't mean there isn't room for a lark and fun, but there's got to be room for meat (choose your main course) at the table, or else we all eat McDonald's.

 

I don't even like games that are so tricky you spend the entire time trying to unlock a door and find all the puzzles. There's room for those, I guess, but that's not what I mean when I think of a great game. I can't figure out why they are so rare. People are still smart, what happened?

 

Well, sorry for going on- Happy Easter to all and just happy to those who choose no Easter, but I gotta go eat the big meal.

munk

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I don't even like games that are so tricky you spend the entire time trying to unlock a door and find all the puzzles. There's room for those, I guess, but that's not what I mean when I think of a great game. I can't figure out why they are so rare. People are still smart, what happened?

Munk

They are rare because the companies realised they could throw together any piece of junk, hide it behind pretty graphics and sell it to the brainless masses as good and they would be believed, that way they can churn ourt new games for a fraction of the cost. People aren't smart anymore really, it all comes down to the difference between intelligence and wisdom. They have been trained/conditioned to follow the herd these days. If a few thousand brainless teenagers can be convinced a new game is great, we have a trend that everyone is supposed to follow. Unless you are like me, refuse to follow trends and try everything for myself before I buy.

 

There is an old saying that I won't quote in full, but briefly;

You can sell horsesh*t as beefsteak, and you may convince some people to eat it, but I know better and I won't!

 

Happy Easter to you as well

Edited by podgie_bear
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I'm going to start another thread about modern games. Bottom line; If Ascaron had survived, their efforts would have earned my trust for Sacred 3, had they modified just a few features. The current licensee has dropped All of the aspects that made Sacred, it's the dollar cake in a plastic wrapper at the Quick Store passing for Marie Calender's.

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