Swords of Glass

Adventure 1986 Dos Keypunch First person

Fascinating old-school RPG

Now this is an obscure slice of old-school adventuring and is surprisingly complex for its time, and so remains a fascinating excursion into history. In similar fashion to Wizardry, the game is a simple enough fantasy RPG which lacks the complex narratives and flashy combat of later such games, but which provides a reasonable amount of dungeon crawling fun. The game starts with players selecting either a warrior or wizard as their character and who is searching for the titular Swords of Glass. After selecting your character you can then purchase your first set of equipment to help you through your adventures and then proceed into the dungeons for some action. The game plays outs in what is now fairly familiar fashion, with players battling monsters, exploring and collecting treasure as they go. There are also a few puzzles to solve as you go which makes for a nice bit of variety, with plenty of items, weapons and upgrades to purchase along the way. There are also quite a few enemies to encounter, but there are a few rather silly ones, like bunnies and giant fruit, which take away from the atmosphere somewhat. As an early example of the dungeon crawler, Swords of Glass is quite innovative, with several features that were novel for the time. Although the graphics and sound are extremely crude, with minimal detail and basic effects, this is only to be expected and can be excused. The game is highly difficult and provides plenty of challenge for hardened veterans of games like Ultima, Bard's Tale and Dungeon Master but newcomers may be put off by this. However, if you can persevere with the game and can accept its old-school charms, there is some fun to be had here.

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