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The Dark Spire - Nintendo DS

by Atlus
Platform : Nintendo DS
4.2 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews
Metascore: 69 / 100
69

Price: $119.99 & FREE Shipping. Details
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  • Take back the age of the great classic RPGs where you build your perfect party from the ground up
  • Shrewd strategy is required to navigate tough dungeon floors with limited resources, earning experience by taking on 80 different enemies out to end you
  • The traditional RPG experience is fully realized in Classic Mode, which offers a black-and-white wireframe dungeon environment reminiscent of the nostalgic PC RPGs
  • Switch back to Modern Mode to update to the full 3-D atmosphere of the Dark Spire
  • A second person narrative reaches out from the game to speak to you of codpieces and killer rabbits, enveloping the gamer in an unforgettable adventure that offers three possible endings
5 new from $110.00 11 used from $29.88
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Product Description

Product Description

Nintendo DS Tribute to classic western-style RPGs The Dark Spire is a first-person RPG of exploration and character development in the purest sense. Parties will be assembled, stats will be rolled, items, weapons and armor shall be equipped, and monsters will be slain. Some adventurers will choose to play using the "modern" interface, its bold, stylized textures and palettes delivering a fresh, up-to-date adventure. Others may opt for the "classic" mode, guaranteed to evoke overwhelming sensations of nostalgia as it perfectly recreates the style and simplicity of the fathers of the genre. Two different presentation modes, two different ways to experience The Dark Spire!

Amazon.com

The Dark Spire is a first-person RPG of exploration and character development in the purest sense. Parties will be assembled, stats will be rolled, items, weapons and armor shall be equipped, and monsters will be slain. Some adventurers will choose to play using the “modern” interface, its bold, stylized textures and palettes delivering a fresh, up-to-date adventure. Others may opt for the “classic” mode, guaranteed to evoke overwhelming sensations of nostalgia as it perfectly recreates the style and simplicity of the fathers of the genre. Two different presentation modes, two different ways to experience The Dark Spire!

Welcome to the Dark Spire
Welcome to the Dark Spire
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3D Dungeon
3D Dungeon
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Dark Spire Logo
Classic Enemies
Classic Enemies
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Synopsis
Those who dare to enter the Dark Spire's endless labyrinth will encounter vicious monsters, diabolical traps, and mysterious devices. Walk carefully, be observant, and keep your wits about you. Investigate the dungeon carefully, using each of your party members' talents to their fullest. A broken sword that might appear meaningless could actually be an important clue to solving a puzzle...

Key Game Features:
  • Homage to classic RPGs — Take back the age of the great classic RPGs where you build your perfect party from the ground up. Shrewd strategy is required to navigate tough dungeon floors with limited resources, earning experience by taking on 80 different enemies out to end you.
  • Dual dungeon modes — The traditional RPG experience is fully realized in Classic Mode, which offers a black-and-white wireframe dungeon environment reminiscent of the nostalgic PC RPGs. Switch back to Modern Mode to update to the full 3-D atmosphere of the Dark Spire.
  • A captivating story of mist and shadow — A second person narrative reaches out from the game to speak to you of codpieces and killer rabbits, enveloping the gamer in an unforgettable adventure that offers three possible endings.


Product Details

  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item can be shipped to select countries outside of the U.S. Learn More
  • ASIN: B001OALQIA
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 4.9 x 0.6 inches ; 4 ounces
  • Media: Video Game
  • Release Date: April 14, 2009
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,175 in Video Games (See Top 100 in Video Games)
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Discontinued by manufacturer: Yes

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

There some great reviews here that describe the game well. But I've got to give the game 3 stars and not 5 like many here are doing. Why? I like the old school graphics but the graphics repeat a lot. Really folks, you are looking at the same 2D graphics for hours. This is a long game and started to tire of the same level graphics.

Its not just the graphics though obviously: the gameplay requires enormous amounts of "XP grinding" where you fight lower level enemies to get to a certain point where you can get to the next level of the tower. This for me at least, got old really fast. Yes I know this is what old school RPG's are like and I'm sure this is fun for some gamers, but I got bored. I enjoyed the first 15 hours of gameplay but I really had no interest going another step. Your mileage may vary!

Also one nitpick -- would it have been so hard to have the battle text be red when you are taking damage and blue you are giving damage to your enemies? Some colored text would have made a world of difference and you are looking at this text all of the time, so why not font colors?
6 Comments 47 of 55 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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This is yet another reason why those of us who grew up playing computer games in the 1980s really owe it to ourselves to buy a DS. First, the DS has a pretty good sized number of turn-based wargames, complete with hexes and counters, (does anybody remember Avalon Hill) an excellent remake of Populous with all the fun still intact,(something many remakes don't achieve so well)and a few excellent arcade collections that bring the 80s back to life. This game, however, is like Nirvana for those of us who grew up playing Wizardry on Apple II computers, early Ultima games on Apple, Commodore 64, or Atari computers, or the Bard's tale games that did not have "in-your-face" 3-d photorealistic, holographic graphics and fifty-seven channel super-duper sound, but required you to have an imagination and to not be afraid to start over many times. Back then, we used to play these games, help our friends with the puzzles, and feel a real sense of achievement on finishing. People then welcomed other players of their games, never used the words N00b or pwned against other gamers, (it was a tight and welcoming community) and cared more about helping each other solve puzzles. I remember in High School there was even a computer game club in which we would help each other with Zork, Ultima, Wizardry, and some of the lesser known games like Odyssey:The Complete Apventure. Trust me; if you lived through those times, you owe it to yourself to buy this game, and be sure to use "classic" mode for the full effect of playing a real RPG on an Apple II or a Commodore 64. There is a more artsy modern mode as well if you don't like the old graphics style, so everyone gets something. If you lived through the classic gaming era of the 80s and you don't have a DS, buy a DS then buy this game.
Enjoy!
2 Comments 21 of 23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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I picked up The Dark Spire when it was new a few years back, and played it for awhile and then for whatever reason stopped playing. Recently, I dug it out and started a new party up to try and play again. While there are many things this old school hard-type RPG does right, there's a few things I really wish were done a little bit differently to make this a 5-star title.

The Good:

If you're like me and grew up on old computer classics like Ultima, D&D, Wizardry, and Might & Magic you will like The Dark Spire as it almost aspires to be the same type of game. You know the type- The lower the A.C. the better your defense is, stuff like 1d6+1 for damage rolls, critical hits on a natural 20, etc.

There are many different classes you can play as and even advanced classes to unlock later. Experience points earned either by defeating monsters or completing quests are stored up and can be spent at the player's convienence on cool new abilities, base stats, or even different class levels. For example I gave my level 7 warrior 1 class level of priest so now he's able to cast some minor healing spells in a pinch. The stipulation of this is that he must first unequip all his heavy armor because it doesn't jive with the gear a priest can normally wear.

Though the game does indeed have many nefarious traps and things to make you want to pull your hair out, there are some silver linings to look at when you compare it to a game like Wizardry. Can you get poisoned? You bet. And it'll happen a LOT. The good thing is that antidotes are easy enough to find in the tower and cheap enough to buy. And even walking around will only take you down to 1 HP and never outright kill you like in Wizardry.
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1 Comment 4 of 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Be sure you know exactly what this is before purchasing it. This game is the very definition of a niche title, aiming itself squarely at older gamers who remember grid-based dungeon crawlers in the old days when you had next to no information about various elements of the in-game world and two hours of work could be undone by an unlucky run in with a particularly nasty skeleton. This isn't so much a tribute to those games as an elaborate recreation of them, and all the flaws that came with RPGs from that era.

Old dungeon-crawlers (think Wizardry or The Bard's Tale) were essentially frustrating grind-fests that killed you frequently and never stopped to explain themselves. Generally, you learned through trial-and-error as you went along and suffered long hours of tedious and monotonous gameplay in order to perhaps graduate to the second level of the dungeon after hours and hours of sheer work. Most never included a map function, forcing players to create their own maps on graph paper, and the various items/weapons were largely mysterious in nature until you bought them and discovered what they were good for.
The Dark Spire accomplishes this with ease and grace, even managing to throw in random stat selection ala D&D.

The game has two modes: Standard and Classic. Standard mode drapes the game in dark textures and designs of astonishing power, giving the game a haunting and gothic edge. There is some variation in the music, but it is generally unexceptionable.
For gamers eager for the most retro experience possible, the Classic mode is available. This mode literally discards all of the textures and designs in the game, replacing shadow strewn walls with wireframes. Literally. That's it.
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4 Comments 9 of 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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