D&D General Classic Gold Box D&D CRPGs coming to Steam


If you want some late '80s/early '90s nostalgia, you can get it starting March 28th from Steam (they're already available on GOG, but Steam is more accessable). Despite their very archaic graphics, clunky UI, and 1e/2e rule set (high level non-humans? Hahaha, no.), they're still fun to play if you can handle the limitations....
 

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Count_Zero

Adventurer
If you do pick these up, I would recommend getting Gold Box Companion to play them with.


GBC has a whole bunch of quality-of-life features, like "auto-map" and "will look up journal entries for you so you don't need to have the Journal open in a PDF reader all the time" and "activate level up without having to leave a dungeon and travel to a trainer." Sadly not "Ignore encumbrance" though, because the games operate on AD&D 1e RAW, so your money has encumbrance - and also doesn't have any form of bank you can deposit your money at.
 

If you do pick these up, I would recommend getting Gold Box Companion to play them with.


GBC has a whole bunch of quality-of-life features, like "auto-map" and "will look up journal entries for you so you don't need to have the Journal open in a PDF reader all the time" and "activate level up without having to leave a dungeon and travel to a trainer." Sadly not "Ignore encumbrance" though, because the games operate on AD&D 1e RAW, so your money has encumbrance - and also doesn't have any form of bank you can deposit your money at.
I was literally just wondering if that, or something similar, will be added to the Workshop for the titles. I'd love to see it, and other mods, become available (and new ones made!)

Other QoL improvements are the removal of level limits for non-humans, and the ability to play paladins and rangers in PoR...


(Speaking of encumbrance from money, one of the great gotcha moments is in PoR, when after defeating the kobold king, you just unthinkingly choose to pick up the coins in the treasure unseen from the menu like you've always done up to this point - just to find out the kobolds had hoarded like 20k copper pieces, and now you're fully encumbered until you drop it).
 
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Weiley31

Legend
Sadly not "Ignore encumbrance" though, because the games operate on AD&D 1e RAW, so your money has encumbrance - and also doesn't have any form of bank you can deposit your money at.
Thank goodness all those "helpful" shopkeepers have just the solution to help adventurers with such a problem!
 


Count_Zero

Adventurer
Thank goodness all those "helpful" shopkeepers have just the solution to help adventurers with such a problem!
Actually, no. The main money sinks in the game are training expenses and (if you do the Valhingen Graveyard quest) Restoration Spells at the temple.

Because I forgot that the game isn't totally RAW - it doesn't require you to keep track of food and spend money on rations and light sources.
 



Count_Zero

Adventurer
How do these compare to Baldur's Gate 1?

They are graphically closer to the Might & Magic games (the first 2) and mechanically using AD&D 1e instead of 2e. So, very few memorable NPCs with interesting plotlines, the audio is PC speaker (unless you edit the DOSbox settings to enable Tandy audio - which I recommend), no party banter. Think of a cross between Wizardry & Icewind Dale.

The Dragonlance Gold Box games may have more interesting NPCs.
 

toucanbuzz

No rule is inviolate
How do these compare to Baldur's Gate 1?
They're true to the AD&D rules with actual turn-based combat on a grid and original magical items/equipment. No "everything moving at once and you can't aim your fireballs." In that sense, it's identical to today's D&D combat. Pool of Radiance was hardcore in that you could take on "hirelings" (who might later betray you), and unless the coding was changed, it made combats tougher the higher your ability scores were.

Obviously the graphics are less and there's not really any meaningful NPC interactions where you discover their backstory and they become more powerful, yada yada.

But, they're still a blast. Map exploration, hidden secrets in certain dungeons, stumbling across a sphere of annihilation or a room with 20+ beholders, there's a sense when playing them for the first time (without a cheat book) "what's around the next corner." Later, designers added "challenges" (pretty much impossible battles unless you did the "export/import" character thing to duplicate "must have" magical items like Boots of Speed).
 

Jer

Legend
Supporter

If you want some late '80s/early '90s nostalgia, you can get it starting March 28th from Steam (they're already available on GOG, but Steam is more accessable). Despite their very archaic graphics, clunky UI, and 1e/2e rule set (high level non-humans? Hahaha, no.), they're still fun to play if you can handle the limitations....
Are they going to include the decoder wheel and the instruction manual so you can get past the copy protection measure popular at the time of "we give you a code and you look it up and give us the related word" so you couldn't just pass electronic copies around?

(I'm kidding - I'm hoping the copy protection is broken on these. If it is I might buy them for the third time since the copies I have still require me to use the code wheel or an associated document that has all of the codes in it at least)
 

Are they going to include the decoder wheel and the instruction manual so you can get past the copy protection measure popular at the time of "we give you a code and you look it up and give us the related word" so you couldn't just pass electronic copies around?

(I'm kidding - I'm hoping the copy protection is broken on these. If it is I might buy them for the third time since the copies I have still require me to use the code wheel or an associated document that has all of the codes in it at least)
The GOG versions skip the copy protection, so I assume the Steam versions will as well.
 

I've found some other articles in this, and they are saying that Gold Box Companion and other tools that help with QoL improvements will be included.

This one, for example: 21 classic DnD RPGs and a city-builder come to Steam

And for anyone curious about which bundles are recommended, the FR 2 and Krynn bundles would be the "classic" ones, where you can take characters through several games and go from levels 1 through 40...
 
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There is some lore in them too. Though I think all of it is on the net.
IIRC, some of the lore is problematic, needing some retcon to fit into the Forgotten Realms. I remember reading the novels going WTF on some of it.
Are they going to include the decoder wheel and the instruction manual so you can get past the copy protection measure popular at the time of "we give you a code and you look it up and give us the related word" so you couldn't just pass electronic copies around?
Dragonlance games had the best. They just gave you a page and paragraph of the associated book, so you had to not only own the game, but the book as well.
 

Resurrecting my own thread here, but I've since gotten the Steam versions, and have (re-)played all four of the FR "Pools" games, as well as the first two Dragonlance games (I've just imported my characters into the third and final one), Anyone interested in me posting some thoughts on these, such as overviews and hints for those who might be interested in playing them (especially in how the Gold Box Companion interface interacts with the original games), and maybe some reviews?
 

Nightfly

Adventurer
I loved Pool of Radiance back in the day. But man, the graphics on these games are just painful. Like, gives me a headache kind of bad. Maybe it's my old eyes. I wish someone would redo these games with moderate graphics.
 

These games are what made me so addicted to the Exploration Pillar. Pool of Radiance was one of my very first video games, and I've adored poking my nose into every cranny, and turning over every rock, ever since. And since someone mentioned it earlier in the thread, Might and Magic games are also amazing for exploration.
 



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