I used to have a small game library for the PC. Only a few dozen games. Games like Ages of Empires, Red Alert 2, Leisure Suit Larry, Quake II, and Tomb Raider, but nothing compared to the game Descent or Descent 2. Recently I ventured off to the University of Michigan campus to see their video gaming archive facility. I found Descent in their archives and I played it, fell back in love with it, and decided that I wanted to get this game back. Now the part that comes into play is this. I used to…past tense…have these games but recently (two months ago) I decided that was never going to acquire a Windows based machine again in my life so I pitched them all in the trash.
Well, because I have so much expendable cash on hand (can you sense the sarcasm?) I went out to look for these games online to buy or download. Long story short I wasn’t able to find them but I did come across Descent III which I didn’t know was out there. Being that I am a Mac person I looked up the emulator that the University of Michigan uses to see if there was a Mac version and “by golly” there is.
So, in bringing more to this blog regarding the past I uncovered a mess of information. There is a site out there dedicated to Descent 3, oddly enough it is just http://www.descent3.com/. How crazy is that? There is a link on their website to what I will consider to be Blackbeard’s Treasure Chest. This site allows for the downloading of older games. I haven’t checked it all out yet but just the thought is fantastic. I believe that I can purchase (unfortunately) anything I want from this site. The site is https://www.gog.com/ – Good Old Games. It is a library of gaming wealth.
So, for today’s Blog, I will be reviewing a little about the levels and perspective of Descent 3 (1999 Interplay – Parallax Software). The perspective of this game is a three-point perspective. It allows for full 360 degree play. That perspective has remained the same throughout the entire Descent series. The tri-axial movement of the ship was cutting edge in 1996 when the game first came out. I remember having to upgrade my computer just to run this game. It still looks good even now. For one of, if not the, first first person shooter games I ever played I still think this game is incredible.
The Bot that helps out portrays an omniscient viewpoint of the entire world and helps guide the Imperial Defender throughout the story. For this game there are 15 missions (levels) that must be passed. If you find the right items along the way there are several secret levels that can be uncovered to play as well. Personally I would classify this as a standard action-adventure game. The levels are introduced individually and successively. Each level must be passed in order to move on to the next level. The game runs a storyline and each level is introduced by the computer explaining the objectives and what threats are apparent on the mission.
Arguably I would venture to say this is one of the most viable games of all time. It introduces the storyline to gaming, there is continual action throughout, and it is really fun to play. This is a good game for us older people because it is “simple” in that there is just the basic theory “seek & destroy”. I find that games with this simple theory behind them are much more fun for me at the age I am now. It was a blast when I was in my 20’s and 30’s but now I have the nostalgia of the play as well as not having to submerge myself into a game that requires continual play. No offense to games like Fortnite but I just don’t have that kind of time as most people my age don’t.
I have included some links below. One of the links is for a video that shows the transition from level to level to show what I was explaining above.
http://www.descent3.com/ (Official website)
https://www.gog.com/ Good old games (download center)
https://www.old-games.com/ – another download center for old games