Steam Backlog Bonanza – Majesty Gold HD [Blaugust 1]

773 words.

It’s possible that I’ve played Majesty before, according to Steam, but I don’t remember it at all. From the description it sounded like it would be in the same vein as Dwarf Fortress or RimWorld, both games I’ve enjoyed, but it was a little bit different. Yesterday was this game’s (possibly second?) chance to impress me, according to the schedule.

The map where you select the "quest" to embark upon.

Installation was easy and fast, since the original game is from way back in 2000, it took about 5 seconds to download. The “Gold HD” version is apparently a 2012 release, with allegedly improved graphics and all the optional addons included, but it still very much looks like a 2D game from 2000. It used DirectX 9, and complained a little bit when I first tried to set up the resolution, but it did successfully run in the end.

The gameplay is similar to other real-time strategy or resource-management games, in that you build buildings which produce people and goods which then allow you to build other buildings, and so on, and so on. However in Majesty, you don’t have direct control over your people. You have to “entice” people to do things by setting rewards for completing the activities you want done. So if you want to explore a part of the map, you setup a bounty to reward people with X amount of gold for going to that part of the map.

And by “people” I usually mean “adventurers.” Your basic workers don’t do much except get killed a lot by wandering monsters. You have to pay rogues and rangers to do the real dirty work of getting things done, like killing said monsters and exploring ruins and so forth. Presumably as they level up they can tackle more and more monsters.

You can always tell when I've forgotten to take real screenshots and have to grab images from the video by the presence of the logo in the corner.

I only played the first tutorial map before I ran out of gaming energy, but it was an interesting game. I don’t remember how much I paid for it (I bought it in 2009-I couldn’t even locate an email receipt for it, that’s how old it is), but I’m sure it was a sale for $5 or less. It’s certainly worth that much. In its day, it was probably much better. Today, there are more modern games like, say, RimWorld, to turn to.

I’d like to see a more modernized version of Majesty though. It’s too much of a hassle to run a game from 2000. This one is just in the “barely” playable category. It’s the kind of game that I would be terrified to alt-tab out of, for fear that it would lock up the whole computer. Remember those games? Those were the good old days.

But I think with some better, or at least more compatible, graphics and a little tweaking to the UI it could be a nice little sleeper game for a new generation. It’s got a lot of personality, if nothing else. Hearing all your adventurers chattering while they go about slaying monsters and collecting rewards is pretty funny.

Will I play more? Probably not. It’s not a bad game. It’s amusing and quirky in its own way, but this PC version is a product of its time that doesn’t age very well, and there are much better games around to play.

It’s worth noting, however, that according to the Wikipedia page, there are now mobile versions of Majesty. I could see this being a good game for a tablet or phone, I might have to check it out someday.

Stream Production Notes: Again, not much to report. Same settings as last time. In post-production, I might have decreased the game’s volume by a few dB, but it was live, and as mentioned previously, there is no way to monitor the outgoing audio stream in OBS-an oversight that seems almost criminally negligent-so I’m stuck with it. I added a “be right back” scene but I didn’t play for long enough to use it. I was pretty wiped out from a day of errands and mowing the back yard in bajillion-degree heat.

Previously* on the Steam Backlog Bonanza: Antichamber.

  • I have now learned that it’s far easier to refer to “previous” episodes, than to add in hooks to “future” episodes. Having to go back and update previous posts with links to future posts is a massive pain.

This is my first official post for Blaugust. The blogging pipeline machine is now fully operational at peak efficiency.

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