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    Thursday, April 14, 2005

    Bard's Tale for Xbox: Video game review

    I'm a big fan of role playing games. I was also an arcade zombie for most of my pre-teen existence.

    Imagine my happiness when I find Bard's Tale! Combining all of the hack-n-slash of an RPG with a 3/4 down view video game layout makes for a dashing good time.

    Having seen this game on the racks at game stores with a $49 price tag slowed me down for a while. I hate it when I buy and game and it was a complete waste of money. So I just rented it instead. The learning curve was a little steeper for me than anyone buying the game, because rentals don't come with the manual. Oooh, lots of button combinations to cast the proper spells you need.
    The map feature is very nice. I quickly figured out how to skip over those awful songs that the game designers apparently thought were integral to the story. Still some things for me to figure out, like why there are cow skulls spinning around the Bards' head sometimes, and how to use different weapons.

    If I had to rate it from 1 to 5 stars, I'd probably give it a 4. A couple of things bug me a little, but not enough to detract from the fun.

    Cary Elwes (Wesley from The Princess Bride!) does the 'voice' of the Bard. It's worth a rental just to hear his snarky comments. This game has a bit of sexual innuendo, but would still be suitable for kids. The jokes would probably go over thier heads. There is blood when you kill stuff. The narrator is actually really funny, and tells the tale of the Bard as if the game were a storybook.

    When you load a saved game, the narrator says things like "oh, yes, now where were we? Chapter 10..." Verrrry Princess Bride-ish. And once, when I died, the Bard cried out "in-con-CEIVE-able!!" as he perished. Heehee!

    God, I am such a geek. But, I am not left-handed.

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