Thursday, December 20, 2012

Let's Talk About Rise of the Triad

My original ROTT game and t-shirt

I think it is time for me to discuss one game that has had a huge influence on my life: my very  first first person shooter game, Rise of the Triad.

The reasoning behind my inspiration to write about this game is because of the announcement at QuakeCon this past summer of a Rise of the Triad (ROTT) remake in the works. When I heard this news in early August, I honestly could not believe it. This is because I know that ROTT was not an incredibly popular or successful FPS game of its time. Nonetheless, it had a tremendous impact on my personal gamer life, and because of that I would like to share my story.

ROTT at QuakeCon 2012, Taken from ROTT's Facebook Page

ROTT is a classic FPS game that released during the time of DOOM and Wolfenstein. While most gamers at the time were playing these more popular FPS games, I was enjoying ROTT, developed by Apogee Software.

To this day I cannot understand why ROTT was not as successful as the other classic FPS games. While the plot is not the most important part of the game (not many were during the 90's) I believe ROTT is much more unique than other games such as DOOM for a number of reasons.

Firstly, ROTT includes a plethora of different weapons.
The MP40 is a greatly preferred weapon because it has unlimited ammo. However, my personal favorites include the Excalibat and the drunk missle launcher (the name speaks for itself, mostly). Some weapons are greatly overpowered, but that power comes with a price. When playing, I find myself accidentally taking friendly fire damage because the heavier weapons have so much power.

Next, the game incorporates the strangest, yet entertaining abilities I have seen in a FPS. 
Seeing a spinning dog bone on a level means one thing: Dog Mode. ROTT gives you the ability to transform into a dog for a limited period of time. Becoming a dog in the game gives you invincibility  and you also have the pleasure of tearing apart enemies with your claws. The second ability is God mode, which is one of my favorite things about the game. God mode is an interesting part of the game to describe because it is incredibly humorous  It draws most laughs when you transform into "God". When transforming, you simply see a hand in your view, while loud groans can be heard. When in God mode, your character becomes invincible and with one strike from the hand, you can destroy every enemy in the room. This ability is most useful when you are in a heavily guarded area on a map. A third ability that could be acquired in the game is shrooms mode. As a child, I did not understand what exactly shrooms mode was, but now that I am able to understand, I can laugh at this and wonder what the developers were thinking when they were making this game.

"God Mode" in ROTT

With entertaining dialogue ("No! Don't shoot! Please!"), fun and challenging levels, and an array of weapons and abilities, ROTT completely sold me to the FPS genre. It is hard to believe that I was so young and was playing this game (it was released in 1995, I was playing it around 1997). If I did not play ROTT as a kid, I may not have been drawn to playing many of the FPS games I have grown to love today.
Image from the ROTT remake, Taken from ROTT's Facebook Page.
I am beyond excited for the remake of ROTT.
Interceptor Entertainment and Apogee Software have teamed together to make this new ROTT game. This remake is expected to release in the near future for $15. From what they have teased us with so far on social media, the game looks very promising. The remake is said to include many new features including co-op mode, which was not in the original game. I am excited to see this great game remastered and with many new additions.

At PAX Prime earlier this year, there was a demo at the GUNNAR Optik booth and I was so excited to be able to play the game. The weapons in the demo brought me down "nostalgia lane". Overall, it got me even more excited to play the remake.

Myself playing a demo of the ROTT remake at PAX Prime

I am almost certain that I could be deemed the biggest ROTT fangirl out there. If I have not convinced you from the picture with my original copy of the game, I also have the game on my iPhone (it is on the App Store for $2 so I can play this amazing game on-the-go.

The original ROTT on iTunes.

For any person who plans on picking up the remake on release, I would also highly suggest playing the original ROTT. Although now it is archaic, I guarantee it will be an experience and enjoyment for any FPS fan.

"Eat Lead!"


Anonymous said...

Awesome blog, Tracie!

<3 Interceptor

Anonymous said...

Just playing the old school DOS-Version of ROTT. I never uninstalled it :D Can't wait to buy this Remake. Online & Co-Op awww yeah.

Greetings from Germany.

P.s.: nice Blog. Little bit too much pink :p

Anonymous said...

Hey Miss Magitek, love your blog. Great writeup about an amesome game, had great fun playing the multiplayer version as well. "Behind Ya"

Brendan_8086 said...

Great game! I'm excited to play the new version of the game will also feature a multiplayer mode. It's great news! This game is a classic and will not be forgotten.

RoNsTaR said...

The CD-Version?! How new school ;) Have the disc version lying around here somewhere... This game is a declaration of love to all shooter fans and its still the best shooter ever created imho

Graham L. Wilson said...

I am presently playing through the original Rise of the Triad (hence my finding your blog while looking for wallpapers), finally getting to finish a game I started in September 2011 through the source port. Although I grew up with classic shooters (despite being way too young for them, seeing as I am only now turning 20, but see, they ran well on our old machines and you could get the shareware for free!), RoTT was not an instant favourite, as I had some trouble getting into the in-between it represents between games like Wolfenstien 3D and Blake Stone as opposed to Doom or Duke Nukem 3D (as opposed to Quake or Unreal... :-P). Minimal graphics can be cool, fuller graphics are great, but RoTT is something... else.

I still prefer the Doom and Build Engine games over it, but I have been enjoying the rather imaginative tricks it managed to do with what is essentially just Wolfenstien 3D made taller with an impromptu height map system (though I kind of prefer the levels where it is Wolfenstien 3D height actually, as the combat is more confined and frenetic in those). And all the fascinating little traps and power-ups, not to mention premiering mass destructible objects; a great example of how good (or at least entertaining) game design is in the end more important than graphics engine. I do not care for its weapon or enemy variety though, as it frankly pales compared to Duke Nukem 3D, Doom or Blood (my personal favourite classic FPS), but still very nifty, particularity for people like me who admire old school 2.5D projection techniques arguably more than the games themselves.

I will play the remake if it comes to GNU/Linux (I am kind of hoping it comes along, along with Shadow Warrior 2013, when GoG launches its GNU/Linux support in the fall), but even if not I might eventually as at least it is DRM-free (by not just being tied to Steam, but being available on GoG), and I really hope Interceptor can do justice to the Apogee/3D Realms legacy (can not do worse than Gearbox I should imagine, or what Scott Miller and George Broussard did themselves for fifteen years...). Incidentally, if you want to know, I think I can top you for most obscure or oddball first FPS: Bad Toys/3D:

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