Author Topic: SSI Gold-Box License  (Read 4152 times)

Online Milos Gulan

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #30 on: June 16, 2013, 03:16:22 PM »
I think good game editor is really nice to have. Strategy or tactical games more often have it then RPGs or adventures.

Offline hans

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #31 on: June 16, 2013, 03:45:51 PM »
...Something I've pondered while reading this thread is whether marketing a game editor is profitable for a software company.  If you're in the business of selling games, why build something that would add free games as competition?  FRUA was released at the end of the run of Gold Box games, and I suspect the timing was intentional.  I wonder how successful it was financially, compared to the individual games, but I'm not sure how to check.
 

Heroes of Might and Magic II included in a game editor.  Last I heard, the series had gone on to number 6. 

Offline Ishad Nha

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #32 on: June 16, 2013, 10:44:41 PM »
By 1993 SSI was branching out in other directions.
Straight 3D games, like Eye of the Beholder trilogy, which had started in 1990.
Straight overhead like Dark Sun games.
I am not too sure how much longer they would have stayed with the 3D exploration/overhead combat format of the Gold Box games. They may have finished their pre-existing commitments in the Forgotten Realms, Krynn and Savage Frontier series as soon as they could, so they could finish with the Gold Box format. Savage Frontier stopped at two games!
« Last Edit: June 16, 2013, 10:51:11 PM by Ishad Nha »

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #33 on: June 17, 2013, 07:06:22 AM »
By 1993 SSI was branching out in other directions.


After 13 games in five years in the same basic engine, this is understandable.  In fact, aside from interactive fiction games, this could be a record.  I can't name any other series of games that released 13 titles in five years.


Quote
I am not too sure how much longer they would have stayed with the 3D exploration/overhead combat format of the Gold Box games. They may have finished their pre-existing commitments in the Forgotten Realms, Krynn and Savage Frontier series as soon as they could, so they could finish with the Gold Box format. Savage Frontier stopped at two games!


This is incorrect.  There were three games in the series, most people just don't realize it.  The second one is the original "Neverwinter Nights," which is why the first game takes place in the region of Neverwinter, so that it can act as an introduction to the area.  They were hoping that if people knew that area already, they would want to play "Neverwinter Nights."


So, they considered the order of the games to go this way:  Gateway to the Savage Frontier, Neverwinter Nights, Treasures of the Savage Frontier.  Little known fact:  Treasures was a sequel to the MMO!


Additionally, they saw the "Dark Sun" games as the evolution of the Gold-Box engine.  It was the engine that they tried to replace the Gold-Box engine with, which is why those games are a lot like the Gold-Box games.  The problem was that people didn't like it as much and everything was moving quickly to 3D...otherwise, we might have seen 13 games in that engine as well!


Source here:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savage_Frontier_(series)


And before anyone debates that there were 13 games using the engine, here is the List:


1) Pool of Radiance
2) Curse of the Azure Bonds
3) Secret of the Silver Blades
4) Pools of Darkness
5) Champions of Krynn
6) Death Knights of Krynn
7) Dark Queen of Krynn
8  Gateway to the Savage Frontier
9) Neverwinter Nights
10) Treasures of the Savage Frontier
11) Unlimited Adventures (Heirs to Skull Crag)
12) Buck Rogers - Countdown to Doomsday
13) Buck Rogers - Matrix Cubed
« Last Edit: June 17, 2013, 09:02:07 AM by ProphetSword »
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Online Milos Gulan

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #34 on: June 17, 2013, 07:30:24 AM »
Thanks for the very useful info :)

Offline PetrusOctavianus

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #35 on: June 17, 2013, 06:05:55 PM »
The problem with the post Gold Box games was that they didn't keep the one thing that really made the GB shine - the turn based tactical combat. Instead the games felt like any other generic mediocre CRPG with a simplistic combat system. The first Dark Sun game was pretty good though, despite the weak combat. But I could never stand more than a few minutes of the Ravenloft and Menzo games.
It may be harsh, but unlike most of my other favourite developers, SSI kind of deserved to fold.
It wasn't until the Baldur's Gate games that the AD&D license got the treatment it deserved again, and IMO the IE games even outdid the Gold Box games, by having lots more options and being moddable.

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #36 on: June 17, 2013, 07:30:10 PM »
Liking the IE games over FRUA or the Gold-Box games is a matter of opinion, naturally.  But, I can understand where you're coming from.  For myself, I wish the IE games would have included a turn-based combat engine instead of a real-time with pause engine...because it is the number one reason why I have never completed any of those games.


Of course, Interplay bungled it even worse with "Descent to Undermountain."  I think we can all mostly agree on that.
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Offline Ishad Nha

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #37 on: June 18, 2013, 01:28:49 AM »
At least some IE games have the option to Auto Pause at the end of the round. I have only played BG2 and a bit of IWD2 myself.

Online Milos Gulan

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #38 on: June 18, 2013, 03:17:29 AM »
This might be a bit off topic but :) I have to say that i never played seriously any gold box games before. I have been playing some of Ravenloft and Menzoberranzan, beside Eye of the beholder, but back then i wasn't too much into Ad&d. My real Ad&d experience with games were first time with Baldurs gate and Icewind dale, and those are games i thought were best up till lately. But now i am thinking that those gold box games might be even better, only thing that was a bit problematic for me to play them as they were with a bit older looking graphics. But beside that point that games are really just greatest Ad&d experience i have had till now. I have to add that that auto mapping feature add to it hugely, because most of the time i would be just lost in game space, as it is very hard to orientate without a map especialy in woods and spaces like that. I think this was a big problem of games like this including Menzoberranzan and Descent into the undermountain. Without a good map, most of the time i just felt lost and without a clue.

Offline Ishad Nha

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #39 on: June 18, 2013, 04:01:08 AM »
Menzoberranzan was fun. Automapping on the CD version was usually all that I needed. However, the two Descent into the Underdark dungeons were so convoluted I needed the Cluebook as well as the map!
In any game, after a few playthroughs areas become familiar. Cluebooks are available for Gold Box games at various sites, Weekend Waste Monster (you can access via Bit o' Moander) and Replacement.docs.
For IE games there are unofficial walkthroughs. Then there are programs like Near Infinity and Infinity Explorer which enable you to read game files.

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #40 on: June 18, 2013, 06:51:17 AM »
Rainbower, you should consider playing some of the Gold-Box games.  The graphics have aged better than you might believe.  And besides, when it comes to CRPGs, graphics should always be secondary when it comes to the experience.
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Online Milos Gulan

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #41 on: June 18, 2013, 09:55:24 AM »
I am already doing that :) currently i am playing NWN offline. I played some of Pool of Radiance, but my group played it on tabletop, though without me.

I probably should start playing those games in order of appearing, but still there are many other FRUA good games that are waiting for me to play. I probably will start Pool of radiance after i finish with NWN offline and Dark tower. Then i will do others in order of appearing. I think that will be my main games, and beside them i will probably play The Realm serial and some Ravenloft games too :)

For now i am just waiting for summer to pass, here is really hot and very soon i will have too much work to do. Probably i will have a bit relaxed postion after 15 july but still i will have to spend most of my time on the beach, but i was thinking of somehow playing FRUA there too, on my oldest 486 lap top. But i doubt it will be really possible, still there is a chance :) :happy1:

Offline Nol Drek

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #42 on: June 18, 2013, 01:12:42 PM »
Here is a link to an interview from 2005 with Don Daglow, former CEO of Stormfront Studios, who produced Gateway to the Savage Frontier, Neverwinter Nights, and Treasures of the Savage Frontier.

http://www.gamebanshee.com/interviews/28317-stormfront-studios.html
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Online Milos Gulan

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #43 on: June 18, 2013, 01:47:06 PM »
Very interesting, thanks for that. Now i just feel i should read more about this games, probably will play them for a while. Currently i am still at start of NWN and developing my characters :) fighting some kobolds and lizards, good times.

Offline marainein

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Re: SSI Gold-Box License
« Reply #44 on: January 05, 2017, 02:33:09 PM »
This is old news (and an old thread), but I note that SSI founder Joel Billings donated source code to gaming museum a few years ago - implying he may still have the source code to many games of interest to us: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/207137/Strategic_Simulations_Inc_founder_donates_company_collection_to_ICHEG.php