Conclusion: Holding The Bard’s Tale in such high regard from years past, I had very high hopes for the next-gen iteration. While my hopes were definitely satisfied in regards to the story and approach of the title, the same can’t be said for the overall gameplay. A sluggish and repetitive combat system and overly simplistic RPG elements leave The Bard’s Tale wondering exactly what type of game it is.
Excerpt: The title of The Bard’s Tale will invoke memories of a classic series of RPGs in those who have been gaming since the 1980s. However, the similarities end with the title as the 2004 iteration of the game is not a throwback or tribute to classic RPG gaming, but rather an action-RPG in the style that has been all the rage since the release of Dark Alliance. With one important difference, that is.
Excerpt: Developed by Interplay and published by EA, the original Bard’s Tale series of games is regarded by many veteran RPG gamers as something of a classic example of the genre. Released on some platforms as early as 1985, the first in the series, Tales of the Unknown Vol 1: The Bard’s Tale, is particularly revered, introducing many innovative new ideas to the then-inafant genre.
Conclusion: up, accepting missions, seeking out the better equipment, etc.) and even the ¾ overhead perspective is familiar but the execution is very funny. The interplay between the Bard and the Narrator is miles more sophisticated and funny that the aforementioned Magna Cum Laude – not only does the delivery work the jokes are actually amusing. There is more to the game than its humor though.
Excerpt: Let me warn you RPG vets who remember with fondness the original Bard's Tale games on PCs: This is nothing like those classic titles. Not even close. Not even in the same category. I stress this so vehemently because there at least two major shifts in formula from the original game concept in this remake. First, there really is no party dynamic that you old school players are probably used to.
Excerpt: The Bard's Tale review Game Over Online - http://www.game-over.com In Hollywood, movies get remade all the time. Whether it's because of a new directorial interpretation of material or the release of new technology that provides better effects or camera angles, practically every single film is up for reproduction and re-release in theaters.
Conclusion: The Bard's Tale makes up for the lack of personality in titles like Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance and D&D Heroes by having enough for the three of them, resulting in quite possibly the most amusing game on the Xbox to date. Which is good, because it's really the only thing that sets this Bard's tale apart from the rest. Beneath the jokes and jibes lies, ironically, a pretty textbook (or should that be sourcebook?) action-RPG.
Pros: genuinely hilarious in places, great sense of humour, cary elwes IS the Bard, possibly the only musical you'll ever play!
Cons: ordinary graphics, extremely repetitive with needless backtracking, disjointed story & optional chapters mean you can miss a lot