after some time dwelling on the free GOG games, I bit the bullet and bought the MoO collection and Theme Hospital.
Now, Theme Hospital is an old favorite of mine, and I had little doubt purchasing it: it’s just plain fun to build the hospital and treat all those wacky diseases, and after you get the gist of the general strategy of the game, the final levels (which are quite difficult, by the way) become much more manageable. I’m on my third playthrough (once as kid and one last year, when it occurred to me do torrent the game), and it never gets old. I’m thinking about coming up with custom goals for my fourth playthrough, to mix it up a bit.
Theme Hospital was an easy purchase as I already knew the game. MoO (specifically MoO 1, for now), however, I first heard about here in your site, and after so many posts praising the game (and the flawless reviews on GOG), I figured I had to try it out. After installing it, I started playing on a large galaxy against 5 opponents as Mrrshan. As soon as I hit the first screen I got that “old-school” vibe: no tutorials, no nothing. Here’s the game, do as you please. It’s really refreshing to have that experience, even moreso nowadays.
Anyway, I started having all sorts of doubts about what the options would do, the tech possibilities and espionage and… JEEZ, the game is so complex! There is a million things you can do, and I figured I’d have to read the manual to see what’s going on. Just for the hell of it though, I decided to make a short session in the most aggressive way possible, attacking the nearby colonies with a couple fighters. Soon, galactic news and diplomatic screens are popping up, and I’m even more floored by the sheer depth of the game. You wouldn’t give much for those first screens you see, but I got really impressed after a very short while.
I’m now starting to read the manual to figure out what everything does so as to make a real first playthrough, but I can see why you can’t stop playing the game. Lots of different races to choose from, random galaxy map, lots of options and strategic possibilities AND you can design your own ships. That is a LOT of content. And not only that, I was reading the gamefaqs tips on the game and they’re talking about 386 PCs and 2MB RAM requirements. That surely is what you call ambition on a game: they’re doing all this stuff with two freaking megabytes of RAM. That’s amazing.
As an aside, I’ve also started playing Ghosts’n'Goblins after the latest AVGN review (from last week, I believe), which I missed as I never had an NES, going straight from the Atari to the Genesis. Now that’s one fun — and VERY hard — game. Seems like I won’t need to buy any Industry games for a long while over here.
Master of Orion 1 is just SO GOOD in its ‘purity’. I mean, there is no BS in the game. You just move some sliders, and you go. In most of these games, they become like Civilization where you build ‘improvements’ and it gets annoying. The only thing I dislike about MOO 1 is the ‘Space UN’ thing. Although, that can become funny when everyone unites against you since you refused to kneel to the Galactic Emperor! Hahahahaha.
I haven’t played Theme Hospital since it came out. That is on my wishlist.
I still have all these Interplay games to consume. I’ve been trying to get MDK 1 to work, but I have been unsuccessful. The game loads up fine as does my character and the horizon. But nothing else is shown. And it flashes at me. I’ve looked up the issue, and one solution is for me to fake 3dfx with a new exe and all this other sort of ‘PC gaming stuff’. Despite the GLORY and AWE of PC Gaming, it does have its flaws. Having to ‘mess’ with games to get them to play does make me appreciate consoles…. only until I get the game working!
If you like Master of Orion, I recommend Master of Magic.
GoG should be having almost all their games on sale for the Christmas Sale coming up. I have an eye on those Origin games. Mmmmm… Origin games…