The Age of Decadence Review

Tom Chick over at Quarter to Three is offering up the first online review of The Age of Decadence, giving Iron Tower's ambitious turn-based RPG an overall score of 4/5. I'm betting that such a score feels pretty damn good for the team after so many years in the making:

It reminded me and I say this as a good thing of an Infocom adventure, with the focus on text and decisions. Sure, the dated graphics could have been a module for Neverwinter Nights (the game engine dates back to a 2001 shooter and it shows). Yeah, I had a character screen where I assigned points to skills, which I started out RPing, but eventually saved up until I needed to boost a skill for a specific decision. There was even an inventory in which I carried around gear, alchemy herbs, and crafting ingredients before realizing I was never going to use them, so I sold them for gold I never needed to spend. The text was always the thing. Everything else was incidental.

You could play Age of Decadence as a more gameplay oriented RPG, but I don't recommend it. Unfortunately, this is what will happen if you want to play a combat-based character. I chose a mercenary for my second playthrough and eventually decided I couldn't be bothered with the combat. For a system with so much detail you can choose to aim for an artery when you swing an axe it sure does feel pointless. Age of Decadence even warns you before you start playing. (Hey,) it says in a politely worded message, (you might want to consider avoiding combat, because we made it kinda hard.) I'll say. Pass. I'm here for the story. If I want detailed tactical combat, I'll go back to Pillars of Eternity. If I want visual spectacle, I'll go back to The Witcher 3. It's worth noting I didn't finish the storyline in either of those games. But I sure as hell did in Age of Decadence.