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Book of Demons - It's Diablo 1 - But in Card Form

Fenixgoon

Lifer
Jun 30, 2003
26,892
1,633
126
I just picked up Book of Demons as part of the Humble Bundle (which also had Frostpunk and Pathfinder: Kingmaker, which I also wanted) and it's the artwork of Paper Mario meets the gameplay of Diablo 1


The game plays exactly like Diablo 1 - from the starting classes (warrior, rogue, mage) to the town setup (healer, inkeeper, witch, old man by a well saying to listen and stay a while) to the dungeon layout (church, catacombs....hell), the game copies D1 in what I consider to be a flattering manner, rather than being devoid of originality. Even the dungeon environment and music remind me of D1. Not quite as creepy, but I could totally see Matt Uelmen(sp?) having done the music.

The various cards you can equip function as persistent gear, consumable items, and spells. "Gear" cards are passive, reduce available mana but provide constant bonus. Consumable items are just that, with a limited number of uses unless refilled, and spells spells consume mana just like any other game on the planet.

The dungeons are fun with a variety of monsters and layouts. Movement isn't as free form as Diablo or other ARPGs, there's essentially different "tracks" you can follow, but it's not to the game's detriment. My only complaint is that sometimes the game will get stuck on what the character is trying to do. After a few seconds, the game will figure it out and you can control your character again. I haven't died to this.....yet.

Combat involves clicking or clicking and holding, just like other ARPGs. Be prepared to click furiously while having your left hand on trigger finger settings to mash potions and spells at just the right time. The gameplay speed is somewhere between Diablo 1 and 2. No diablo 3 screen full of monsters and explosions here.

One mechanic that was not clear to me initially was that returning to town - before getting the all important town portal spell - will reset the dungeons.

My character is level 12 and I've maybe played for 3 hours. I'm not sure what is required to beat the game, but I have to say - if you're looking for a fresh take on an ARPG, this is a great candidate.
 

Aikouka

Lifer
Nov 27, 2001
29,483
451
126
I'll admit that I wasn't sure how Book of Demons would be from the photos and such that I looked at, but this sparks a bit of interest to check it out.

As for this month's Humble Choice, I don't think it has as many "Oh, I want that!" moments, but it at least has some games that look interesting. Adding to your list, I'm also interested in Okami HD (surprisingly, I don't already have it...), Shenzhen I/O, and Warstone TD.
 

Craig234

Lifer
May 1, 2006
38,584
344
126
Ya I wanted Frostpunk and Pathfinder also... when I bought them. Bit by Humble again. Thanks for this post, I'll grab it. I'd offer trades on games like the others, but it seems like a big hassle here. Oh and Aikoua, I already got Okami HD, also...
 

[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
7,956
3,754
146
Bought it a while back, it's a lot of fun. It has a simplicity and refinement that I miss from modern gaming.
 

DigDog

Lifer
Jun 3, 2011
11,192
900
126
Angband has been in constant development since the 80s. It is now in version 4.1.3 (well, 4.2, but im a purist and 4.1.3 is the best they made) and it's unrecognizable. Comes with graphics (well .. tiles), the command UI is much easier, there are info on everything buiilt into the game, i dont want to call it "intuitive" because it's still really complex but it's much, much better to play than when it was just a splash of ASCII characters.
 

Fenixgoon

Lifer
Jun 30, 2003
26,892
1,633
126
Beat the game today with the warrior class. Neat game!

I felt like card drops seemed to fall off towards the end, so replacing my cards (gear) wasn't something i did very often. I think more variety would make it a lot more fun/interesting, but at the same time - i don't want a loot/grindfest either. There's no point to having 99% garbage items drop.
The other thing is that since my character wasn't changing much, and there isn't much in the way of side quests, that the game started to feel grindy, because it was just clearing levels until I hit the main boss.

Mechanics-wise, as the levels increased, so did the number of monsters, and it became difficult at times to control my character's movement. Since the movement path is fixed, a large number of monsters can quickly crowd you out. Luckily there are spells that push monsters away and clear space. They were lifesavers for sure.

Overall, definitely a fun, creative little game. And even young kids could probably play this one - it's not particularly violent/gory. Skeletons, ghosts, spiders, etc, and most have benign death animations IMO.
 
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