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Considering The Age of Decadence is a low-profile indie game that is directed at a niche within a niche, I'm not surprised to see that many publications have opted to avoid reviewing it, when they didn't ignore its release altogether. That said, we've managed to find a few reviews, and they point to a positive reception for Iron Tower Studio's uncompromisingly brutal turn-based RPG.
Destructoid awards the title an impressive 9/10 based on the game's writing, quest design and choices and consequences.
Age of Decadence is an RPG to its core. It offers the player a wealth of choices, many of them carrying lofty consequences along with them. The core design element of player choice transcends simple dialogue choices, as players can progress through the game in a variety of styles. Many games offer up the illusion of choice while failing to actually deliver, but Age of Decadence serves up difficult and tangible crossroads with no looking back.
It may have some rough spots, but it is one of the most well-designed RPGs I have had the pleasure of enjoying.
It's with great pleasure that I say that Age of Decadence is a game I love. I couldn't have been happier to have been given the opportunity to review it. It's a fun, engaging game with a seemingly endless amount of depth, leaving me truly surprised that a team of only six people were able to create it. You can tell that they spent a long time trying to make this game as great and hardcore as it is now. I can't wait to see what they decide to do next.
Press Play Media, 7.4/10.
If you're heavily invested in action RPG games like Skyrim of Diablo, I'd recommend watching some footage before deciding on whether or not this is something for you. The Age of Decadence plays a little like an interactive (low) fantasy novel with multiple story branches to experience, and if that sounds interesting to you then you might very well be the target audience here.
Despite it being ancient in appearance and sound (and the prohibitive difficulty for newcomers), The Age of Decadence has blown me away with the sheer choice it offers in such a small space. I'm not overjoyed that once you join one guild, you're locked out of the others due to the interacting quests, but I should be praising things like that as it means that your choices matter. Age of Decadence is likely the best RPG I've played since Skyrim.
The Gamers Lounge, 5/5.
But in the end, is it all worth it? Absolutely, yes it is. You will not find a more player-driven game this year, with the possible exception of Fallout 4, which hasn't come out yet. While the barrier of entry is ridiculous, it's also rewarding. Seriously, check this one out. Also-- the demo is the first town of the game. For you to explore. For free. There is no reason not to at least give this a look.
Finally, Richard Cobbett has penned some impressions based on the Teron section of the game in his Rock, Paper, Shotgun RPG Scrollbars column. The article mostly focuses on describing Cobbett's experiences, though he seems impressed with the amount of paths available:
He directs me to someone called Antidas, before casually adding that as the town loremaster, he's not a huge fan of competition. Bad news for another loremaster, Cassius, currently hanging out at the tavern. Feng promises profit if he should find himself not wishing to be in town any more, or not in need of oxygen. Either is fine. I talk him up from 50 to 60 imperials and head over to see what's going on.
He wants to see Lord Antidas, and coincidentally, that's exactly the guy I need to sell a map to. I can choose to lead him to an abandoned building and introduce him to the business end of my knife, or help make that connection. Opportunity!
By leading him to Antidas and backstabbing Feng, because seriously, fuck Feng, I prove myself useful and trustworthy. Funny how these things work out, really. The guard grumbles that he had a whole other quest in mind for this, but nope. Nope. There'll be no slaying rats or delivering packages or finding your underpants for you today.
The only catch what if Feng's words about the map were a lie?