Author Topic: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode  (Read 2532 times)

Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2015, 09:58:42 AM »
Limited pre-orders and exclusive bonus content don't really make sense in the digital world, other than giving customers an incentive to buy a product unseen, at their own risk. It's unfortunate that so many developers nowadays use these tactics. Of course, that's just my opinion and probably slightly off-topic again. But something of relevance in this regard would be the question whether only the DM needs to pre-order to get this stuff or if all of the potential players need to own the bonus content, too, if they want to play the DM's adventures built with it.

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2015, 08:42:16 PM »
More info about the game.  This is what Dan Tudge, president of n-Space, had to say about the campaign tools:

"The DM is fully capable of customizing experiences and significantly  altering a player's adventure by changing encounters, placing traps,  spawning monsters, creating quest NPCs, generating secret areas, locking  doors -- all in real-time. We also have deep campaign tools that enable  DMs to build near limitless campaigns for their players (more on that  later!)."
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

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Offline fly_by_night66

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #17 on: March 08, 2015, 01:58:31 PM »
I understand that the DM and all is great but does it have just a single player mode?  I don't know a lot of people(really no one) who also enjoys D&D and gaming and such so the DM mode is really not a sell point.

Thanks - Jeff

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #18 on: March 08, 2015, 08:07:50 PM »
It has a single player campaign.  We don't have all the info about the toolset yet, but it looks like there may be an option to make playable modules as well.  This looks like it could be similar to NWN.  We'll see what the final product is like, though.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

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Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #19 on: November 15, 2016, 02:48:30 PM »
Did anyone end up giving this game a try?

From what I've heard it was criticized for not achieving what it promised, that it was nothing like NWN and not a faithful D&D adaptation, that the DM features were very restricted, and on top of it the developers went out of business and servers were shut down. Because of all this, it's kind of difficult to find reviews that are up-to-date and not full of bitter disappointment. I was wondering if the game is worth playing anyway, if you don't go in with high expectations, just for the single player campaign (Steam keys for the regular, Digital Deluxe and Deluxe Campaign editions are currently on sale at Gamersgate for 55% off, after the regular price has already been halfed, if I'm not mistaken.)

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #20 on: November 16, 2016, 07:05:11 AM »
I bought and played it.

THE NEGATIVE:
As a toolset similar to NWN, it failed simply because you cannot create conversations that are longer than a single line, and the responses are always the same (they amount to "Accept Quest" and "Goodbye.")  This makes it impossible to create any sort of single-player experience beyond something simplistic...which can be fun if you handle it right.  However, as a game running dungeons with friends or with someone in live DM mode, it is okay.  If you want it for the toolset, you will be disappointed, even though some people have figured out ways to make some decent mods with it.  A lot of the negativity comes from the over-hype from the company itself.  Truthfully, they were working on patches to fix the toolset and deliver what they promised when they went out of business...so sadly some of those final patches never materialized, though they did fix some issues.

THE POSITIVE:
The positive is that the single-player campaign is pretty good.  I played it to completion, and I usually hate D&D games that are "real-time with pause."  This one, though, had a good story and sadly, it's something that nobody talks about in all the hype about the toolset.  They released the DLC "Rage of Demons" for free (an entirely new add-on campaign that was originally going to cost money), so really you get two games for the price of one if they're including it.  I haven't had time to play "Rage of Demons" much beyond the intro, but it seems to be interesting and it's basically a sequel to the previous game.

THE SYSTEM:
While it is similar to the 5th Edition rules, they took some liberties.  None of these broke the game for me, though; because it still felt like D&D.  Someone with only a passing interest in 5e wouldn't even notice the changes.  Overall, it didn't seem to matter when I was playing the game; because the game was fun, and that was the most important thing.

MY TAKE:
If you want this for the single-player experience, you should buy it.  If you want it for the toolset, you might still buy it...if you're okay with the limitations, but don't expect to put out massive NWN type modules.  If you want it as a way to run random dungeons online with friends, you should buy it.  If you want it as a simulation of D&D 5e, then you should skip it.

If you have any specific questions about it, feel free to ask.

Here's a screenshot of me running a random dungeon with a friend (we are accompanied by two AI-controlled NPCs who fight alongside us to flesh out the party):

« Last Edit: November 16, 2016, 07:13:37 AM by ProphetSword »
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

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Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #21 on: November 16, 2016, 10:54:04 AM »
Thanks a lot! I was mostly interested in playing it as a single player game, without any ambition for creating my own campaigns. And I don't know anything about D&D 5e. I guess for me it would be a completely new system with some familiar D&D names here and there. I wouldn't mind if it strayed from official rules or D&D lore, as long as it's fun to play. I also don't expect to be able to play it with friends, although I wouldn't mind trying that, if the occasion would arise. It sounds like it would be worth a try.

Some more specific questions:

- It seems that you need to create a Sword Coast Legends account in order to play the game? Even for single player?
- How has the shut down of the servers impacted the game? Is multiplayer still possible? Is the SCL account independent of this, or is there a chance that the game will become unplayable at some point, if accounts are shut down as well?
- Did you have any technical issues? (Apparantly some reviewers had crashes before they could even start the game or something, so I'm wondering whether it would be safer to buy it directly on Steam during the next sale instead of buying a Steam key on Gamersgate, so that I could ask for a refund if it does not work.)
- How hard or easy is it to filter out the better community modules, if I wanted to give them a try? Is it like the needle in the haystack or are there good pointers on how to spot them?
- Any CRPG game you've played that you could compare Sword Coast Legends to, in terms of quality, combat, story?
- I've heard that the game is too easy even on Hard Mode. What did you think? (I usually play Normal Mode and don't mind games being a little on the easy side, but it sounded like this one is no challenge at all.)
- The Digital Deluxe Edition Includes the Following Bonus Features:

    Tome of knowledge (giving players a boost to their attributes and abilities)
    Order of the Burning Cloak Armor and Weapons
    Beholder monster for Dungeon Masters
    Lost Mines dungeon tileset for Dungeon Masters
    Specials Wisps for Dungeon Master cursors
    Exclusive Hero forum badge
    Exclusive Dungeon Master forum badge 
    Digital soundtrack of Sword Coast Legends

Would any of these (apart from soundtrack) be worth spending a few dollars more, or are they just superfluous fluff for a player like me (seeing that I probably won't use their forums, might not get a chance to play DM, don't want to cheat)?
« Last Edit: November 16, 2016, 11:05:36 AM by Olivier Leroux »

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #22 on: November 16, 2016, 03:25:16 PM »
Thanks a lot! I was mostly interested in playing it as a single player game, without any ambition for creating my own campaigns.

You will probably like it, then.

Quote
And I don't know anything about D&D 5e. I guess for me it would be a completely new system with some familiar D&D names here and there. I wouldn't mind if it strayed from official rules or D&D lore, as long as it's fun to play. I also don't expect to be able to play it with friends, although I wouldn't mind trying that, if the occasion would arise. It sounds like it would be worth a try.

While the rules aren't exactly like 5e, they're a close representation with some fudging.  You will recognize the common D&D trappings (attributes, hit points, levels, spell names like "Fireball" and "Magic Missile.") 

The game does take place in the Forgotten Realms (in the Sword Coast region).

Quote
- It seems that you need to create a Sword Coast Legends account in order to play the game? Even for single player?

I don't remember at this point.  I don't think it was a big deal, though.  It might be it's necessary to have the account to use the multiplayer servers or to connect to the module download system.

Quote
- How has the shut down of the servers impacted the game? Is multiplayer still possible? Is the SCL account independent of this, or is there a chance that the game will become unplayable at some point, if accounts are shut down as well?

Even though the company went down, another company took over.  They are the ones who released the non-PC ports and put the finishing touches on "Rage of Demons."  I don't know what they've decided upon for the future of the game, but they talked about doing more work on it.

I think the single-player version will always be playable.  I know it works this week because I actually loaded "Rage of Demons" and played the intro again about four days before you posted these questions.

Quote
- Did you have any technical issues? (Apparantly some reviewers had crashes before they could even start the game or something, so I'm wondering whether it would be safer to buy it directly on Steam during the next sale instead of buying a Steam key on Gamersgate, so that I could ask for a refund if it does not work.)

I didn't have any issues.  I had one laptop that didn't like it...ran kind of slow, but I bought a new laptop about a week into the game, and didn't have any issues after that.  I blame how old the laptop was in that case, though.

Quote
- How hard or easy is it to filter out the better community modules, if I wanted to give them a try? Is it like the needle in the haystack or are there good pointers on how to spot them?

I think there are user ratings on the modules.  You can access the module repository from within the game itself, and I believe you can sort it by ratings...as well as a couple of other sorting options.  Been a while since I looked at it, though.  I may pop into the game and see after I get done typing this.

Quote
- Any CRPG game you've played that you could compare Sword Coast Legends to, in terms of quality, combat, story?

Well, it's obviously similar to a game like Baldur's Gate or Icewind Dale.  I liked it better, though (never could finish any of those). I think it has a lot to do with being in a modern engine where, when paused, I could zoom in, move the camera around and swing the camera to any angle I needed.  Being able to see everything clearly when you're giving instructions to the party made a huge difference in some of the boss fights.  I had issues with that in Baldur's Gate.

Quote
- I've heard that the game is too easy even on Hard Mode. What did you think? (I usually play Normal Mode and don't mind games being a little on the easy side, but it sounded like this one is no challenge at all.)

Depends on how good you are at managing the combat.  It will vary.  I had a couple of battles that had me pulling my hair out because my party died several times before I could find a strategy that worked...and I played on Easy mode.  It really depends on how good you are at this kind of thing and what strategy you use. 

The game fulfilled the two criteria I had:  1)  It was fun, and 2) It made me want to keep playing.  That's all I can ask of any game.  How difficult the game is really has no bearing.  I mean, "Pool of Radiance" was really hard in 1988 when I first played it, but now I find it simple and easy...but someone who has never played it might find it difficult.  But both of us might still have fun with it, so it doesn't matter.

Quote
- The Digital Deluxe Edition Includes the Following Bonus Features:

    Tome of knowledge (giving players a boost to their attributes and abilities)
    Order of the Burning Cloak Armor and Weapons
    Beholder monster for Dungeon Masters
    Lost Mines dungeon tileset for Dungeon Masters
    Specials Wisps for Dungeon Master cursors
    Exclusive Hero forum badge
    Exclusive Dungeon Master forum badge 
    Digital soundtrack of Sword Coast Legends

Would any of these (apart from soundtrack) be worth spending a few dollars more, or are they just superfluous fluff for a player like me (seeing that I probably won't use their forums, might not get a chance to play DM, don't want to cheat)?

If we remove the soundtrack, you're left with three things that are exclusively for Dungeon Masters.  If you're not planning to run games or build modules, these don't matter at all.

Two more things are in regards to their forums.  If you don't care about that (and I doubt you should), that only leaves two things.  The ability boost is fine, I suppose, but I finished the game without it.  And the Order of the Burning Cloak armor and weapons...I don't know what that is, but I had Order of the Burning Cloak armor and weapons by the end of the game (or had them, if I found better stuff).  Not sure if it's the same, but I didn't need them.

I picked up the game when it was $19.99, and I didn't feel my money was wasted.  So, really, if you get it for less than that and you end up liking the single player experience, I think you'll be fine.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2016, 04:31:49 PM »
Alright, thanks a lot for the detailed replies! That was very helpful. :)

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2016, 07:03:18 PM »
I jumped into the game tonight and grabbed a screenshot of the module download function in the game so that you could see how the ratings look...

LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #25 on: November 16, 2016, 07:23:09 PM »
Thanks! I went ahead and bought the game. Haven't started playing yet but it seems to run fine so far.

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #26 on: November 16, 2016, 07:34:55 PM »
All this talk about the game makes me want to actually jump back into it and play it again.  Like I said, I still need to play "Rage of Demons," so this might give me an excuse.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Olivier Leroux

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #27 on: November 17, 2016, 08:00:19 AM »
So far I don't regret buying it.

Character creation was interesting, and I really appreciate that for once you're able to switch between all the tabs back and forth without losing any changes you've made. I really don't like how it's in NWN and most other games, where you have to do things in a given order. In this game you can e.g. fine-tune your appearance and still change your class afterwards without losing your general look etc. That's actually a step up from older RPGs and good thinking for a game so badly rated. Nice!

Combat feels fresh and interesting enough, too. And I can't confirm that there's no challenge in Hard Mode. If you run into bigger mobs, it can get quite dangerous.

What I don't like that much is the savegame system, apparantly you only have one save slot per character/playthrough (unless quicksaves go into a different slot), and the game just autosaves instead of letting you name your savegame. That's an unusual choice for storytelling RPGs. Then again, the game doesn't seem to involve much - if any - choices & consequences. But single autosave slots are still a hazard that in theory can ruin your game if something goes wrong. Not such a good design choice, IMO.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2016, 08:04:59 AM by Olivier Leroux »

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: Sword Coast Legends - new D&D game with DM mode
« Reply #28 on: November 17, 2016, 01:36:56 PM »
I think the save games are saved online, which is one of the reasons you need an account.  When I log into the game on my laptop, it knows where I am on my desktop and vice-versa.  Your characters and such are stored on their servers.   I think this is because you can have friends drop-in at any time and run through the game with you...so it's all saved there.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

 

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