The Awakening: Part 1, Ashen

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Wildcard Stream Vol. 38 - Continued Fantasies Continued

Ping-Poging through the Orc Wars, getting attached to an unfinished dungeon crawler, and a classic princess rescue

Authored By: Dr. Dos
Published: Mar 21, 2023
Part of Series: Wildcard Streams

♦ Livestream of the following 3 ZZT worlds. Originally streamed on March 19th, 2023 ♦
• (0:00) "Orc Wars" by Unknown []
• (27:10) "The Awakening: Part 1, Ashen" by Todd Hoffenberg (1997) []
• (56:43) "The Rescue of Princess Alexia (2.0)" by Marcus D. Gregio (1993) []

Piling on yet more fantasy adventures to make up for not finishing all the fantasy adventures planned for the previous Wildcard stream!

We start off by being drafted into the Orc Wars. Playing as an elf and taking on hundreds of the darned things (ruffians) to save your people. The author loves ping-pong-paths and invisible mazes, which make for a less than great game, but it's a lot of fun to joke about the orc wars at least. Also, it has quite the surprising ending!

The Awakening is next, a demo for an unfinished game that really stood out! The game begins as a dungeon crawler, though differing from the ones popular in the ZZT community around the turn of the century. Rather than use objects, it relies on default enemies. It plays rather nicely, and the gameplay is enhanced by some fun story developments as you begin with no memory and meet/rescue captives in your escape. The game includes little morality choices and the writing makes those decisions feel impactful despite things always returning to the defined story path.

Definitely the highlight of the three games featured.

Lastly, the game left behind in the previous stream: The Rescue of Princess Alexia. A kidnapped princess is your ticket to fame and fortune. A fairly basic game that also focuses on fighting evil ruffians. Journey through the mines and a bizarre castle in your quest to bring her back safely. Just some simple action here, with one board using a simple engine similar to the one in City of ZZT where an object has to be steered to shoot away some walls and procure a cure. Nicer in design than Orc Wars, but nothing to write home about.

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