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Old 07 December 2014, 19:45   #1
dex
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Other games with "Darkmere"/"LotR" atmosphere? (may also be current-gen)

Edit: the following list is a bit contradictory and just reflects my personal taste, sorry - however, feel free to post anything you'd like to add

Darkmere was one of my favourite RPGs of all time! It perfectly nailed the "Lord of the Rings" feeling I wanted in games since I read the book. It's dark but not too dark, has a great medieval/fantasy setting inspired by Tolkien and excellent graphics. Unfortunately it's a bit cumbersome to control, save etc.

However, I started a list of games with a similar atmosphere (does include non-Amiga games, genre does not matter but should not include and D&D based games) for anyone who may be looking for similar games - if you want to chime in, please feel free to do so

Amiga platform:
Dragonstone
Cadaver
Ambermoon
Blade of Destiny

Other platforms:
The Elder Scrolls: Daggerfall (Mark Jones also did the graphics for Darkmere)
The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim (yes it does, strangely)
Shadows of Mordor
Warhammer: Mark of Chaos (spot on atmosphere)
Mordheim (Steam early access)
LotR: War in the North
The Witcher Series
Hunted: The Demon's Forge
The Dark Eye/Das Schwarze Auge Series
Gothic Series
Risen Series (some parts are a bit too piratey but hey)
Demon's Souls (almost not on the list but it's "western" enough to fit in)
Dark Souls Series (same as with Demon's Souls)
Inquisitor (especially when visiting houses and also its world and lore has something about it)
Lord Of The Rings - The Two Towers GBA [ Show youtube player ] (Thanks s2325)
Lord of the Rings - Return of the King GBA [ Show youtube player ] (Thanks s2325)
Dark Quest An inofficial take on Heroquest by Games Workshop/MB
Ishar Series First game (inofficially "Crystals of Arborea") as well as the developer's name "Silmarils" were heavily inspired by Tolkien)
Divine Divinity Series

Not quite:
LotR: Battle for Middle-Earth (extremely movie focussed, great game in its own right, though)
LotR: The Two Towers/Return of the King (a bit shallow, in contrary to the handheld versions mentioned by s2325 which are more similar to Diablo style ARPGs, also a bit too movie focussed since they didn't have the rights for the book, still good games)
LotR: Fellowship of the Ring (atmosphere a bit too "light")
Dragon's Dogma
Diablo Series (dark and gritty fantasy setting, has a very special place in my collection but it's just a separate thing entirely in my eyes)
Dragon Age Series (it's more in the D&D direction than Tolkien - if that even makes any sense for several reasons)
Bound by Flame

Note: Games based on the Dungeons & Dragons license are something entirely different for me and special in their own ways, so they didn't really fit into this list

Last edited by dex; 21 December 2014 at 17:59.
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Old 07 December 2014, 20:04   #2
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GameBoy Advance
Lord Of The Rings - The Two Towers [ Show youtube player ]
Lord of the Rings - Return of the King [ Show youtube player ]
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Old 07 December 2014, 20:24   #3
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Thanks s2325 I just added them to the list! A bit deeper than the console brawlers. I completed The Two Towers on GBA, not the second one, though - might even take another look
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Old 07 December 2014, 20:31   #4
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I also had fun with GBA Two Towers, few hours wasted. I'm not judging games by screenshots.
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Old 07 December 2014, 20:40   #5
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Right, the graphics weren't bad actually. Of course you have to see a game in its environment, time and platform restrictions. Seen worse on GBA...
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Old 11 December 2014, 10:52   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dex View Post
Ishar Series First game (inofficially "Crystals of Arborea") as well as the developer's name "Silmarils" were heavily inspired by Tolkien)
I never realized that until now. Mind blown! But I don't think it is unofficial - in Ishar 3 one of the bar patrons explicitly lists Crystals of Arborea as the first part in the series.

I find it difficult to really add anything to the list, your rules are really contradictory. I don't understand what atmosphere has to do with D&D being excluded for example, there are plenty of D&D inspired games such as Neverwinter Nights which fit the bill just fine in my opinion.
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Old 11 December 2014, 20:32   #7
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Hehe yeah, you are right. It's contradictory indeed Good thing these forums are a good place to be - or I'd have a load of flame posts right there. Interestingly, it's exactly the atmosphere of Neverwinter Nights or other D&D classics such as Baldur's Gate I would absolutely not connect with that unique Lord of the Rings/Darkmere atmosphere. Actually, it's quite hard to nail down what I'm really looking for here. Maybe that's something I should build a list for instead?

Just think a bit of Skyrim, a bit of the recent excellent Shadows of Mordor, a lot of Darkmere and a little bit of Cadaver maybe - what game would that be? It's a just for fun list anyway, so no worries
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Old 18 December 2014, 18:12   #8
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That would be a non-existent game, possibly a very interesting one

Something in the Legacy of Kain series might come a little closer; Soul Reaver for example.
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Old 18 December 2014, 21:22   #9
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To me Darkmere, due to the very recognizable artist's style, has very little in common with other games broadly under the arcade/rpg label.
Its atmosphere is indeed great, but through idea association, I think that comes to mind to me is some stuff by Mark Jones himself, like Stormlord.

By the way, not that it has anything in common with the Darkmere' atmosphere, Mark Jones was responsible for texturing some of the dremora in Morrowind.

Other stuff that may somewhat recall Darkmere:
Skeleton Krew,
Blade,
Castle Kingdom,
Dan Wilder,
Heimdall II
Hero Quest,
The Immortal,
Legend,
Shadowlands,
Tower of Souls
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Old 19 December 2014, 23:16   #10
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Hey thanks Marcuz, nice list! Say, that Castle Kingdom looks mighty interesting, came accross a screenshot of this some time ago but didn't investigate - HOL has no cover for this one, was there a boxed edition or was it part of a magazine coverdisk?
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Old 20 December 2014, 03:26   #11
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HOL has an entry for it, listing it as part of the Value 'n' Fun series, as a commercial game. But I know only what I saw in its page, sorry!
http://hol.abime.net/2944
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Old 21 December 2014, 17:58   #12
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Hm, might be worth tracking this one down
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Old 25 January 2016, 21:15   #13
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"To me Darkmere, due to the very recognizable artist's style, has very little in common with other games broadly under the arcade/rpg label.
Its atmosphere is indeed great, but through idea association, I think that comes to mind to me is some stuff by Mark Jones himself, like Stormlord.

By the way, not that it has anything in common with the Darkmere' atmosphere, Mark Jones was responsible for texturing some of the dremora in Morrowind."

Thanks for the nice remarks! Greatly appreciated
Mark Jones
www.mjonesgraphics.com
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Old 25 January 2016, 23:36   #14
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You're welcome!
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Old 26 January 2016, 06:07   #15
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I'll be updating my website in the coming few days with more info on my Amiga days. Hopefully you might find it interesting

Mark
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Old 26 January 2016, 08:14   #16
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Pillars of eternity might be worth a try for you.

Game-mechanics loosely referencing D&D. In total, however, with its own style and a very special athmosphere...

I love(d) it - waiting for the second part of the expansion .

Cheers,
McT
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Old 26 January 2016, 18:23   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Jones View Post
I'll be updating my website in the coming few days with more info on my Amiga days. Hopefully you might find it interesting

Mark
www.mjonesgraphics.com
I look forward to that!
Btw Mark, what are you looking for in your next work projects? More character design, pixelart, modeling/texturing... ?
I'm just curious, I love your dragons / drakes pixel illustrations!
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Old 26 January 2016, 22:35   #18
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Currently I haven't anything lined up, but ideally something in the fantasy/horror line of things. And preferably character stuff, but I enjoy anything really. I've even done some voice work!
Something atmospheric would be good
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Old 26 January 2016, 22:55   #19
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I saw today the new updates to your site, even if I generally like more pixelart than 3D, the recent things you did are very cool! There's a great consistency to your work, I admire that a lot!
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Old 27 January 2016, 10:24   #20
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@Mark Jones Even though I hugely admire your work (Daggerfall still being my favorite RPG), but dare I say that your site can use a tiny refresh into the 21st century?
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