Betrayal At Krondor or Realms Of Arkania?

Will be home most of this weekend and in the mood for a good old fashion CRPG.

Was thinking of reinstalling BG2 since I picked up the Throne Of Bhaal expansion finally about a year ago but never actually played it but then looking through GOG I realized I’ve always heard of these two but have never played them.

So, which should I start with? The Realms Of Arkania is actually a collection of both 1 & 2. Not familiar with any of these games but have played all the Infinity Engine games, some Might & Magic and Wizardry games (Wiz 8 remains one of my favorite RPGs of all time), Fallout 1/2, SSI D & D Gold Box games and others.

Throne of Bhaal.

If you can actually get Betrayal at Krondor running, do so. Easily one of my top five favorite computer games of all time. I just wish it would run on a modern machine without needing to run some buggy-as-hell DOSBox emulator.

I was actually thinking of doing the same thing, but it was a tossup between Krondor or Fallout.

I think I’ll go for Krondor, haven’t played that one before.

I’d go for Betrayal at Krondor. The first Realms of Arcania game doesn’t stand on its own without the nostalgia factor. There are a number of baffling design decisions, like spells you can invest points in but can’t be used, and essential npc encounters that can only be discovered by consulting a walkthrough or randomly walking into every house in a city. I’ve played through Blade of Destiny at least three times, and will probably do so again someday, but it’s definitely the inferior game.

Pay $6 and play Return to Krondor: http://www.gog.com/en/gamecard/return_to_krondor

I love the books, of course, so I loved the games as well. I think that RtK as a game alone is still good, though.

The versions on Gog.com are compatible with XP/Vista:

I thought about that - heck I REALLY want to play it - but I figured I only played BG2 through once and that was back in 2001 so I’ll just play though the whole main game + expansion again.

Even considering starting with the original BG since I never did the stuff in the Sword Coast expansion. But still, that’s not something I can blow through in a few days, heh.

Of the two I’ve only played Betrayal at Krondor, but it’s good. However, you’ll want to keep a notepad handy. Also, as tempting as it is to let Gorath do all the heavy lifting in the early-game, try and make sure Owyn gets some experience.

  • Alan

Perfect timing! I’ve been hankerin’ for an old skool RPG and I completely missed this one somehow. GOG just made a sale.

~mink~

BaK is such a high-water mark in the RPG genre it’s unbelievable.

without needing to run some buggy-as-hell DOSBox emulator.

lolwut

If you consider DOSBox buggy as hell, I can’t imagine what you’d establish as a baseline for stable, bug-free software :\

Betrayal at Kronder is awesome. I haven’t played Arkania, but BaK is definitely awesome. It adds so much character to the typical open-world/dungeon romp, and the writing nails Raymond E. Feist’s style.

… and the costumes! Oh man, those character pictures were so… interesting.

If having your entire party die because their shoes wear out sounds fun, play Realms of Arkania.

What the hell? DOSBox hasn’t been buggy for a LONG time.

Oh, I’ve been thinking about Arkania myself. Apparently, as long as you actually pay attention to the whole water/food/shoes/tents/etc. stuff, it’s pretty fun. I don’t like managing that stuff, but I remember the character creation system being awesome. I never played Betrayal though.

Krondor, definitely.

You mentioned the SSI Gold Box games. The Dark Queen of Krynn is probably the premier example from that time period of the union between a mediocre writing tradition and a well-refined set of mechanics creating something altogether more than the sum of its parts. Sure, there are questionable character cameos. And the decision to set the game in the lost continent of Krynn probably upset Weis and Hickman loyalists all over the world, bless their shriveled black hearts. But the game starts by kicking your ass and never lets up, even managing to create an ending that ties in the very strongest parts of the books with an intriguing application of the game’s engine and the perspective it gives you on the world.

(that I’ve experienced, in my opinion, etc etc attached to every one of these statements)

Don’t do this. Baldur’s Gate doesn’t hold up well at all, and the Sword Coast add-on is basically a bunch of scattered and mostly not very exciting quests with little unifying them. It’s definitely no Throne of Bhaal. I can’t comment on the main question, though. I’ve got both Betrayal and the Arkania games (in box, even) but found both impenetrable.

Betrayal at Krondor impenetrable? How so?

I lurve the game, easily one of my all-time favorite RPGs and one of a very few I played through multiple times. The graphics were not great even back in 1993 so they are that much harder to look at today but the game itself stands up very well.

As Alan points out, keep a notepad handy because there’s no in-game mechanism for keeping track of things and you’ll definitely want to write things down unless you have a steel-trap memory.

I’ll second Creole Ned; I started the game shortly after my earlier post, and unless it gets much deeper later on I’m finding the interface relatively simple. It’s much less complex than, say, an Infinity Engine game.

I loved Betrayal at Krondor and it’s arguably a key game in the history of CRPGs. It was certainly the first one that I know of that used the “chapter” concept to break up the game and give you freedom to roam a bit without tripping over later parts of the plot.

Funny side note about Betrayal at Krondor: the official strategy guide has large segments that are written as if you were reading a novel. And then a few years later Feist actually did a novel version of the story.

Ahh, the glory days of Dynamix. For a few years there everything they made was outstanding.