Thursday, 14 November 2013

Deathtrap Dungeon, the computer game - available to play again!

A curious thing happened to me yesterday (actually, two things, but the other one was at work and need not detain us here). I was having a think about what I'd like to blog about, and one of the items high on my list was the 1998 Eidos computer game for PC and PlayStation, Deathtrap Dungeon.

 

I was going to bemoan the fact that although I own copies of both versions of the game, I have never been able to play it, as by the time I got hold of the PC version it was incompatible with current operating systems and I'd never owned a PlayStation (and presumably the same problem would hold for that). So I was going to talk about all the interesting goodies that came along with the game, the official strategy guides to it by Prima, and how it would be great one day to see a conversion of the game for modern PCs.

Anyway, I was having a look at the Official Fighting Fantasy website yesterday evening to see if there was anything new in the world of FF, and I spotted news from the 12th October that the game has been made available by Steam for play on modern PCs (unfortunately not Macs, as Alex/Gallicus (@ffantazine), editor of Fighting Fantazine has pointed out)! For a fee of £4.99 it can be downloaded and played (you need to be online whilst playing). Brilliant! At long last I can enjoy the madness that is Deathtrap Dungeon as imagined by Eidos and can experience it through the eyes of the brutal barbarian Chaindog or the deadly amazon Red Lotus (though up till now I keep dying on the first level...). I'll post some more on the game as I get to know it better, and will put together something on the various extras that came with the original games at some point soon too.

5 comments:

  1. i have the Playstation version. its really clunky, but addictive in a way. I clocked it, and a funny thing happens at the end. Best part of the game is it came with the DD card game. Awesome.

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    1. Hi Adrian. Yes, it is kind of clunky, but I haven't played many computer games since some of the early Lara Croft, so it seems kind of normal too. I hope I manage to get to the end one day and find out what happens!

      And the stuff that came along with the boxed sets was cool - the card game, the bestiary, the special edition of the gamebook. Nice to have.

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    2. Actually, hang on a minute. You don't use your winnings to recruit an army and head east to confront Agglax the Shadow Demon, do you?! Oh, no, that's another adventure...

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  2. I also have the original game CD sitting around, along with all the extra goodies it came with. Its a pretty terrible game, with awful graphics (even for that time). Do the strategy guides have anything good in them lore-wise? I've always thought about picking them up. And how do we reconcile the storyline of this game with the FF world? I mean the levels are gigantic and involve steam-powered machines, flamethrowers, rocket launchers and all kinds of craziness. Its a far cry from the original DD and TOC. My idea is that it is set ten or twenty years into the future. Sukumvit, now a crusty old coot, has been driven insane by the shame of having his dungeons beaten and has spent the intervening years creating the biggest, most extravagant dungeon in history. He's bankrupted the city and enslaved the poor to build this monstrosity. That would explain the enormity of the dungeons and also the futuristic tech that can be found there. What do you think?
    - jediboyy

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    1. I like this explanation a lot. Assuming we don't just decide that it's not canon, or that it's some kind of alternative reality, or whatever, this is the best solution. It helps to explain the markedly different nature of Sukumvit and Fang and of the dungeon, and the technological advances. 10-20 years might not be enough though; maybe Sukumvit has unnaturally extended his life and we are looking at some grim version of Allansia 50 or 100 years in the future. Still leaves unexplained why the imps are wearing Adidas-style trainers, but we can always put that down to artistic license :|

      The Prima guides (there are two versions) are of interested for a couple of reasons. Firstly, they tell you how to win the game, allowing you to explore the dungeons without spending the rest of your life doing so. They also provide maps of the dungeons, but unfortunatley only parts of it, and not very clear ones (nor consistent ones as far as I can tell by comparing the two guides). I'd love to have a fully worked out map of the whole dungeon complex. I don't think they contain anything in terms of new information about the world or background to the dungeon.

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