Of all the board game producers in the world, one is more notorious for its style, presentation and rules than any other - that company is Games Workshop. Just to underline this point, the rule book for the table-top version of Hero Quest would make any MicroProse flight simulator manual embarrassed at its relative weediness. Nothing is left to chance, with everything covered in detail, from how to move (which is never as simple as it sounds) to what dice to roll if a Chaos Lord attacks you from behind while wearing a yellow hat... on a Thursday.
The reason for all of this attention to detail in GW documentation is to heighten its games' accuracy, which makes it very surprising that, until now, none of the company's wares have ever been converted to computer - what better way could there be to keep track of all the number-crunching than by having a machine do the job?
Until recently, the main reason that none of these conversions have appeared was Games Workshop's slightly 'underground' reputation: all of the company's games were heralded as table-top role-playing games, which limited their growth somewhat (a pity, because they've come up with some real gems).
All of that changed however, as soon as mainstream board game specialist Milton Bradley noticed a growing interest in the RPG. A partnership between the two companies emerged and the all-new Hero Quest was born: Milton Bradley produced the basic 'kiddies' version, while Games Workshop went on to make a more complex older version called, simply, Advanced Hero Quest.
Now, thanks to the simpler rules and widespread popularity of the younger version, Gremlin has seen fit to convert both the board game and its expansion kits (extra quest scenarios - due to appear over the next few months), and is also due to begin work on the game's science fiction follow-up, Space Crusade.
WHILE, FOR THE MOST PART, Hero Quest manages to faithfully recreate the fun of the table-top version (without the player having to deal with all of the 'paperwork'), in one or two areas of this conversion Gremlin has actually managed to over-simplify things. This over-simplifying is mainly apparent in the combat areas: a larger feeling of involvement would have been generated by even the simplest of additions such as the roiling of a dice. As it stands, the fights are pretty bland and act more as a temporary obstacle than as a major part of the excitement. Another area that could be improved is the animation - it's not that there's anything monstrously wrong, it's just that there could be more of it, instead of printing the words "Your enemy is consumed with flames" on the screen, it would have been nice to see a large flaming ball scream from your character's fingertips towards the helpless goblin. Where Gremlin has succeeded is in taking all the elements from the board game and convincingly turning them into a highly playable computer game. The control method easily lends itself to multi-player games, while still managing to stay interesting enough for a single player - a rare feat indeed. Hopefully, Hero Quest will pave the way for more Games Workshop conversions as the system Gremlin has employed could quite easily lend itself to other games of this ilk. Providing the quality stays this high (and the presentation is polished up) they should all be just as successful.
Nice adventure game, which has many expansion disks available on the net too. Mostly it's like the Heimdall series.
An adaption of the well known boardgame Hero Quest (you wouldn't have guessed!). While not being a REAL RPG the (board-)game ranked somewhere near that genre and attracted especially those who where not quite into it - RPG light you could say... Now, what we have here is a (Computer-)RPG, that's made up very much like the original boardgame (actually I never owned it, so please don't send any angry e-mails if I'm wrong), you select your "missions" before you play them, so you can choose how to build up your character. Well, sure good fun, but nothing for those Hardcore-RPG-Fans amongst you, maybe a game for yer little brother ;-) Nice choice for a first look into the genre I think.
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