The sequel to the first Quest for Glory game takes place in the town Shapeir and the desert surrounding it, in a Middle East-like environment. It seems that the powerful elemental spirits have been troubling the Shapeir folk recently. Something, or someone, is behind those troubles. It is your task to find out what is going on, to get acquainted with the many inhabitants of Shapeir and to prove once more you are worthy of your heroic title!
Just like its predecessor, "Trial by Fire" is an adventure game with text-based interface, puzzles to solve, and characters to talk to, mixed with a role-playing character development system and battles. You can play as either a fighter, a thief, or a wizard, and also become a paladin in this game. The combat is action-based. You gain better parameters by fighting enemies, training, and performing other actions.
Quest For Glory II: Trial By Fire is a wonderful adventure game written by Sierra in a 1990. It is the second game in the Quest For Glory series.
Watch the introduction to see yourself and your friends (Abdulla, Shema, and Shameen) arrive at Shapier on a magic carpet. Shema and Shameen quickly set up an inn, which soon becomes your home in the desert town of Shapier.
However, something is VERY wrong here. The town is being terrorized by Elementals, and the townspeople are looking to you - as a Hero - to save them. Only YOU are brave enough to face the Elementals. You need to explore the town and talk to various people, in order to discover more about the 4 Elementals that are haunting this town. It is up to you to find a way to defeat Fire, Air, Earth, and Water. If all that is not enough for you, there are many sub-quests for you to complete as well. Just read the Notice Board in the Guild Hall.
Of course, defeating the Elementals is only part of the story. As you explore Shapier, you learn about the troubled town of Raseir. The Emir has gone missing, and his brother is now ruling the town. Unfortunately, his brother is very corrupt, and the town is very run down and dingy. The criminals and baddies have an easy life, while others live in fear. You vow to travel to Raseir, find the Emir, and restore him back to power. In addition, did I mention the evil giant Genie? On top of everything else, you must prevent the Genie from being released. It's all in a day's work for a hero like you!
Before the game starts, you have to create your character - choose from either Fighter, Wizard, or Thief. Different characters provide different puzzles and different challenges. Now you must name your character, and assign various stats to him.
The game uses a simple text parser. Simply type in commands to control your character. There are also menus at the top of the screen to change various aspects of the game - arcade difficulty, sound on or off, saving or loading the game, etc. Move your character by using the arrow keys, and change the walking speed by pressing '+' or '-' keys. As with many games of the time, there are limited 'Save' game slots. However, that is not a problem. When you have used all your slots, simply 'Replace' a previous saved game.
The game may be confusing at first, as all the streets in Shapier look the same. However, a map is supplied with the game manual. Also, once you have bought a map from Ali Chica, then things will become a lot easier.
I found the game tricky at times, since you have to pay very close attention to what people are telling you. You never know what is an important clue that you must 'Ask About' in more detail. You must also remember to eat twice a day, sleep at night, as well as keeping a supply of water with you. As you progress through the game, your skill levels will increase.
Some useful shortcuts are:
Control & A - Ask about somethingControl & T - Tell about somethingControl & C - Cast a spell
I was very impressed by the rich, detailed graphics. The whole game has a lovely Arabian style to it, and the town is alive with people just wandering around, doing their own thing. From the vendors selling their wares, to the Challenger with his tightrope - everywhere you look, there is something going on. The stark desert outside Shapier, by contrast, looks very hot and dry. You can almost feel yourself gasping for water as the hot sun beats down on you.
The Katta's Tail inn is delightful to see, with little alcoves for people to sit at if they want some privacy as well as some more public tables. The eye above The Magic Shop was a nice touch, as it watched you where ever you went. The Elementals are nicely animated, and almost seem to have their own personality. Characters move very smoothly, and talk away to you, making the game seem a lot more real - as if Shaper and Raseir are real places.
Another thing I loved was the Day \ Night cycles. When night time came, the town grew dark, and vendors packed up their stalls for the night. The whole town became quiet, as everyone went to bed. Even small details such as the fish in Aziza's home, and the parrot in Blue Parrot Inn were a pleasure to see.
MUSIC AND SOUND EFFECTS
There is some nice music here. Each shop has its own tune - the Magic Shop has a light, daft tune, while the Fortune Teller has a kind of futuristic, spacey tune. Even Shema dancing gets her own tune. Each spell you cast has a different sound effect, which I thought was a nice touch.
There are so many characters here that you will enjoy meeting. If you have played the first game, then you will already know Shema and Shameen (the Katta), Abdulla, and Erasmus. But there are also a lot of new characters - each with their own distinct personality. Who could resist the lovable Ali Chica, trying to sell you anything he can think of? Signor Ferrari was an interesting character, with his 'Keep You Friends Close And Your Enemies Even Closer' attitude. My favourite was Keapon Laffin. His name appeals to me (Keep On Laughing), and I love the way he talks in funny rhyme. There are many more, but I will let you discover them for yourself.
This is an excellent adventure game, which I highly recommend. The story will draw you in, and not let go. I love how you can play as 3 different characters. This gives the game a lot of replay value, as each character has his own way of dealing with problems, and overcoming obstacles. The text parser can be quite tricky, as sometimes you are not sure exactly what to 'Ask About', but it is well worth persevering. The graphics are very rich, and the town is very alive and bustling with activity. I thought the intermission as you travelled from Shapier to Raseir was very amusing. I also loved the contrast between the luxurious Shapier, and run-down Raseir. I was impressed that each spell you cast has its own unique sound, and the music was varied. There are a lot of characters to interact with, which brings the whole area to life.
People who downloaded Quest for Glory 2: Trial by Fire have also downloaded:
Quest for Glory 3: Wages of War, Quest for Glory 4: Shadows of Darkness, Quest for Glory 1: So You want to be a Hero (remake), Hero's Quest (aka Quest for Glory I), Quest for Glory 5: Dragon Fire, Police Quest 2: The Vengeance, Police Quest 3: The Kindred, Police Quest: Open Season
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