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Default Legend of Grimrock - Now Available

April 13th, 2012, 05:27
Hm. Mixed feelings.

I bought it to support the indie game world, and the price is good. There's some compelling gameplay here, but it has some pretty big faults as far as I'm concerned.

I never played Beholder or any of the other games this is getting compared to. The puzzles are pretty nice so far (around 3 hours in), but some of the puzzles rely on learning the tricks of the movement interface, for instance (early minor spoiler for an example):

Spoiler


The game is nice looking. Sounds are pretty good. I'm not expecting a big budget graphics fest, but the enemies I've seen so far look really nice. But…

The combat is awful. Not fun at all. I restarted on Easy because the mechanics of combat are simply not fun IMO. I wish there was an auto fight option that did some kind of D20 based on your stats and skills. Oh well. So far on easy mode I haven't died, so at least they made a way for you to avoid the combat if you want.

3 hours in. Very compelling. Strangely addictive and satisfying. PUZZLES!!! Yes! Thank you! Though I can't help but think every few minutes of playing that Grimrock 2 will be a much, much better game. Iwish these developers well, I'm glad I spent the money, and I hope they polish the next one even more.

Nice feeling of OMG we need to get the hell out of this place. They have my money for a sequel already. Best indie RPG I've EVER tried.
Last edited by Ovenall; April 13th, 2012 at 05:39.
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April 13th, 2012, 05:41
Yeah combat is definitely the weak point. It can still be fun, but the game brings ridiculously unrealistic movement exploitation to a new level. As long as I'm in a 2x2 room I can exploit the inability of the enemy to move diagnolly to run circles around the enemy and never get hit. I try to avoid that whenever possible because it feels so horribly cheesey, but some fights seem to be intentionally unwinnable without it. It does at least get a little trickier when there is more then one opponent.
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April 13th, 2012, 05:57
I'm telling you, these developers are smart, and will fix this aspect of the game in its next iteration. I'm proud to have it on my machine. So happy to see puzzles again.
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April 13th, 2012, 07:11
For those not familiar with the old games, 2x2 "exploitation" is "the point". That's how you do combat and that's how you always did combat in these games. You could never take a dragon or beholder face to face, you would get blasted by a deadly spell, paralyzed or poisoned in an instant foes were able to attack you, the tougher monsters often dropped you half your hitpoints or killed you in one blow. Moving in the correct pattern while loading up spells and attack at the right moment takes practice and keeping several things in your head at the same time. Yes, it's get a lot harder with multiple opponents and if you use stuff like poison cloud.

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Last edited by JemyM; April 13th, 2012 at 07:34.
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April 13th, 2012, 07:55
Hmm…I don't know. I played all of the old school games, and I don't remember ever using 2x2 exploitation. I used hit and run tactics certainly, but I never abused movement to that severe level and I completed most of those games. I don't feel like those games were intended to be played that way, it was just an incredibly effective exploit.

In Grimrock though the 2x2 exploit really doesn't seem to be an exploit, but is in fact the only way to survive some encounters. I personally find this to be incredibly immerision breaking, but I guess others consider it to be just classic old school gaming.
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
For those not familiar with the old games, 2x2 "exploitation" is "the point". That's how you do combat and that's how you always did combat in these games. You could never take a dragon or beholder face to face, you would get blasted by a deadly spell, paralyzed or poisoned in an instant foes were able to attack you, the tougher monsters often dropped you half your hitpoints or killed you in one blow. Moving in the correct pattern while loading up spells and attack at the right moment takes practice and keeping several things in your head at the same time. Yes, it's get a lot harder with multiple opponents and if you use stuff like poison cloud.
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April 13th, 2012, 08:08
For the record I find it easy not to use this exploit in Grimrock (on hard).

I do run away a lot and pelt my enemies with missiles and spells when the going gets tough of course,waiting for them behind corners, then backing away etc…

I do not expect them to change the combat for the sequel(*). Would not be one of my requirements anyway, it is fun and it works well enough. What I want is more puzzles the same great atmosphere and perhaps topside maps

(* of course if enough people fuss about it I could imagine them upping monster speed
and adding a sideway jump animation )
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April 13th, 2012, 08:38
Originally Posted by fadedc View Post
I used hit and run tactics certainly, but I never abused movement to that severe level and I completed most of those games. I don't feel like those games were intended to be played that way, it was just an incredibly effective exploit.
The games were programmed that way. In later editions of Dungeon Master you couldn't guess monster movement, they could strafe and or follow you in circles. I would like to see you take the dragon in Chaos Strikes Back; hit-and-run spawns a ton of worms that makes that fight a nightmare and face to face kills even your strongest characters in 2 blows/fireballs. The end boss in the Eye of the Beholder games since they hurled deadly spells at you in a really tiny area.

Having played Legend of Grimrock for awhile now I have encountered foes that uses the same technique against you, especially ranged attackers. I have also encountered foes that are almost too quick to avoid which creates great variation.

Remove this movement and LoG would be a really boring game as far as I concern because all you can do is to hack with your equipped weapon. There are few special attacks in the game (backstab depends on you hitting a monster from behind) and the spells aren't that variated either. It's the combination of attacking/movement that makes combat what is is.

I recently played Legacy where you couldn't move in fights at all. That game became dreadfully boring due to the lack of variation, hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal…

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April 13th, 2012, 08:46
I found two things I wanted to see;
* A quiver that allows you to use different ranged weapons, like getting a stack of knives equipped once your shurikens runs out.
* The ability to pull a chain when the door is to your left or while you rightclick.

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An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind. - Mahatma Gandhi
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April 13th, 2012, 09:14
Yeah you definitely need movement in a game like this, but there is middle ground between movement being useful and movement making the enemies completely ineffective.

I don't remember much about the later DM games, but I definitely killed the beholder without 2x2 cheesiness. I also played many other DM/Beholder inspired games such as myth drannor, undermountain, as well even lesser known games (one or two in Ravenloft? Black Crypt on the Amiga?) I think many of them were also setup to avoid too many cheesy movement tricks. It has been awhile though.

I've run into ranged skeletons in Grimlock that try to use movement against me, but they end up being so comically bad at it, that it works against them. The rare times they stand still they are MUCH deadlier. Maybe there are more effective enemies on deeper levels. I've just gotten to the blue lightning spitting wyvern things that destroy you if you don't 2x2.

Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
The games were programmed that way. In later editions of Dungeon Master you couldn't guess monster movement, they could strafe and or follow you in circles. I would like to see you take the dragon in Chaos Strikes Back; hit-and-run spawns a ton of worms that makes that fight a nightmare and face to face kills even your strongest characters in 2 blows/fireballs. The end boss in the Eye of the Beholder games since they hurled deadly spells at you in a really tiny area.

Having played Legend of Grimrock for awhile now I have encountered foes that uses the same technique against you, especially ranged attackers. I have also encountered foes that are almost too quick to avoid which creates great variation.

Remove this movement and LoG would be a really boring game as far as I concern because all you can do is to hack with your equipped weapon. There are few special attacks in the game (backstab depends on you hitting a monster from behind) and the spells aren't that variated either. It's the combination of attacking/movement that makes combat what is is.

I recently played Legacy where you couldn't move in fights at all. That game became dreadfully boring due to the lack of variation, hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal-hack x3-heal…
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April 13th, 2012, 09:22
Good luck defeating Captive without this "exploit"

I never considered it an exploit, but a natural skill you learned - exactly like circle strafing in a FPS.

Some of the earlier step-by-step games were not sophisticated, so this was probably too powerful once you mastered it. But later on, and as I mentioned specifically Captive was nearly impossible without it. The game had some seriously fast enemies that would kill you ASAP if you didn't time this perfectly.

I played pretty much ALL these games, so I know what I'm talking about. Jemy is absolutely correct.

There's plenty of challenge, especially with fast/ranged enemies - like that little Plant guy shooting poison in the 2nd level.

It takes coordination and skill to time movement perfectly, and the challenge depends on the enemies.

Combat was never "great" in these games - but LoG is very true to the genre here.
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April 13th, 2012, 10:48
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
For those not familiar with the old games, 2x2 "exploitation" is "the point". That's how you do combat and that's how you always did combat in these games.
Yes, this is my recollection as well. The "combat dance" was more or less designed into the game and a required tactic to stay alive. I always considered it to represent the party members maneuvering around the foe, evading and dodging to the best of their abilities, then quickly attacking before evading again, "dancing around" the foe to avoid being hit. Muhammad Ali said it best, "Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee".

The combat would be mind-numbingly boring if all you were required to do was to stand in place and hammer at your enemy, to only click attack when the "cool down" is over, not having to pay any attention to the enemy or much anything else, just the attack button. As LoG has real time combat, movement is a crucial part of it, like it or not, as are "twitch skills". Wishing for something else, like turn-based combat, is wishing for a fundamentally different kind of game and not relevant with regards to LoG, IMO.

Same goes for the magic system or item use. Any quick cast or drink potion buttons (or the like) would completely change the game and, IMO, ruin it. This type of cRPG has time as a commodity, as a resource that you muct decide how to use, and any shortcuts to casting or item use would trash the game balance completely. Combat is supposed to be hectic, a bit confusing and messy; casting spells in midst of all that is supposed to be difficult (especially the more complex spells requiring several runes). Note that you can have one spell held ready, to represent preparedness (etc.), but any subsequent spells require nimble mouse-work and that's how it's suposed to be (in these kind of games), IMO. (However, I do understand that juggling two mages is probably a bit too much, but mayhap that's the intention of the devs all along.)

The only thing I would want to be added to the game is an option to switch the mouse buttons, so that left-click attacks (I'm still accidentally unequipping my front line warriors of their weapons in the heat of the battle by left-clicking on their weapons).

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April 13th, 2012, 14:25
Bought it from GOG, a welcome change after being a bit bored of Skyrim…
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April 13th, 2012, 15:35
2x2 "exploitation" is in fact quite clever and somewhat skilfull (well at least more dynamic than a passive blocking/dodge percentage proc) and i can't understand why people are complaining about it…

In a "normal" aka boring in the RPG genre you normaly stand in one place and use your abilities in combat. In this game you have that and movement. When you change your square you are basicaly dodging a blow but you have to press a button (or 2,3) in order to do that, instead of standing there and spamming buttons.

I'm not saying its the best way to handle combat and everyone should enjoy it, but i honestly feel it does make sense. If you are realy good at movement in squares you can win the game in normal dificulty because it was balanced that way. If you don't like it or can't handle the movement requirements you change to easy and the game balances itself and assumes you'll stand there and only use your attacks/abilities/potions/magic to do combat.

It should probably should be made more explicit and better explained in the game though.
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April 13th, 2012, 18:34
Originally Posted by KnightPT View Post
2x2 "exploitation" is in fact quite clever and somewhat skilfull (well at least more dynamic than a passive blocking/dodge percentage proc) and i can't understand why people are complaining about it…

In a "normal" aka boring in the RPG genre you normaly stand in one place and use your abilities in combat. In this game you have that and movement. When you change your square you are basicaly dodging a blow but you have to press a button (or 2,3) in order to do that, instead of standing there and spamming buttons.

I'm not saying its the best way to handle combat and everyone should enjoy it, but i honestly feel it does make sense.
It does not make sense. But things do not require to make sense to enjoy them (see religions)

Dunno this game but if old school, it must include a levelling system, a character developpment system or something.

2x2 dancing represents exclusively the player's skills. If you are good at it, you can get out of any trouble a party of heavily armoured, built to take punishment.

It grows better as the party in this game moves as one.

It makes no sense to include in the game design a levelling system, with stats and all, supposed to represent a character's abilities and allows the player's inputs to misrepresent that way what the stats system is supposed to represent.

Dunno this game but if it is old school, then it must include that kind of system. If it doesnt, well, while it could a step in a right direction for RP games but a frustration for stats munchers.

Does not make it a bad game.
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April 13th, 2012, 19:08
I don't know, I find the 2x2 dance to be pretty mind numbingly boring. It's incredibly easy, requires minimal skill, and it's very repetitive. People are talking about it like it's some fast moving skillful dance but it's not. It's just a slow and methodical move, wait, attack…..move, wait, attack while you wait for the helpless enemy's hit points to reach 0.

But anyway people have different opinions on this. I'm not denying that 2x2 was a powerful strategy in the old games, it just wasn't required in any of the dozen or so that I played (I don't think I ever played or ever heard of Captive so I can't comment on that). But not needing to rely on 2x2 is not the same thing as never needing to move.
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April 13th, 2012, 19:46
Still good. A few hours later. Thanks for RPG watch for turning me on to this. Stupid old fashioned fun.
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April 13th, 2012, 20:05
Originally Posted by fadedc View Post
I don't know, I find the 2x2 dance to be pretty mind numbingly boring. It's incredibly easy, requires minimal skill, and it's very repetitive. People are talking about it like it's some fast moving skillful dance but it's not. It's just a slow and methodical move, wait, attack…..move, wait, attack while you wait for the helpless enemy's hit points to reach 0.

But anyway people have different opinions on this. I'm not denying that 2x2 was a powerful strategy in the old games, it just wasn't required in any of the dozen or so that I played (I don't think I ever played or ever heard of Captive so I can't comment on that). But not needing to rely on 2x2 is not the same thing as never needing to move.
Eh, play on easy mode. The fighting sucks, this little gem is all about e proration and puzzles.
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April 13th, 2012, 21:23
I play on normal with automap turned off with an all-human party. The game can be really challenging at times and I am forced to use everything I have in my arsenal to survive. In one place I used a combination of Poison Cloud + Door. The monster stayed behind the door and thus took poison damage. Once in awhile I opened the door and throw a new cloud. In another I chickened out and used exclusively ranged weapons, every single ammunition I had which was like 25 items. The 2x2 barely work at all, most monsters are too fast so I find myself backpaddling as much as possible.

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April 13th, 2012, 22:51
I play on hard, and I can usually avoid having to 2x2, so really it's not that big of a deal in LoG. There are just a few creatures that will utterly destroy you if you don't use that strategy but who are trivially easy if you do. On easier dificulty levels it might be different.
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April 14th, 2012, 00:19
Are you sure you're playing on hard?
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