Spiderweb Software brings you Avadon: The Black Fortress, the first chapter in a new, epic fantasy saga. You will serve the keep of Avadon, working as a spy and warrior to fight the enemies of your homeland. As a servant of the Black Fortress, your word is law. Experience an exciting fantasy role-playing adventure and battle a conspiracy to destroy your people.
Well, this is what I get for not checking supported platforms before actually purchasing a game. I saw this game listed on Desura, which I run on Ubuntu. Only Linux games should be listed and the summary page indeed says that the game has a Linux version. I bought the game but when I attempted to install it, it claimed there were no available releases to install. I checked the summary page again, it still says it supports Linux but this time, I notice that the 'Buy' button doesn't have a Tux icon next to it.
Good turn based RPG for people new to turn based RPGs, or for people new to Spiderweb, but existing fans might be disappointed. On its own merits, Avadon: The Black Fortress is a very good, if somewhat simple and linear, RPG. Jeff's been influenced by Bioware in this game (especially the first Dragon Age game), and as a result the game's story is more focused, at the expense of the sense of freedom found in older Spiderweb games. Companions are also pretty chatty and each one has his/her own special quest, and a negative Bioware influence is that you often have multiple dialogue options which have no effect on events.
The combat has been made much easier than in previous Spiderweb games (though there are a couple of difficult boss battles) which I, personally, got frustrated with towards the end of the game. Health regenerates outside of battle, but fatigue doesn't, so most filler battles are spent using basic attacks on each enemy so as to preserve fatigue, whereas if a character dies, they'll spring to life when combat ends. The combat system is pretty simple in general, and there's no character creation aside from picking your class.
The game's strength is in its story, and the way it's revealed to the player. If you only play the demo, you'd be forgiven for thinking it's yet another generic fantasy setting, but it slowly starts to get really interesting. It's got enough lore to fill out the game, and hints at goings on outside the scope of this title, so I'm eager to play the next game in the series.
It's a step down, but still more satisfying than the action games with stats that get called RPGs these days, and I personally think it's important to support Jeff Vogel as long as he continues creating turn based role playing games. I think that newcomers to Spiderweb games would appreciate it, as it doesn't require you to be an RPG nerd to get the hang of it, and it's the first in a new series, so you don't feel like you're missing out on the series' history.
I love this game. It's engaging and well developed. Sometimes it gets a little same-same but I think that is the genre's fault. If you like D&D style, party based RPG's then this one is for you. Also, the game is HUGE providing many, many hours of gameplay. Well done chaps!
As others have already pointed out, it is an `old style RPG` game...It might be an old style but it still can make you enjoy the time spent playing it, and that is timeless! If you have played Avernum games then this is just like it with a small adjustments...which is a good thing. If only some of the new `indy` game developers would learn from these guys how to make a game!!! The only complaints are character choices, quest tracking and the music....