Meet The Overlad

By Alec Meer on March 18th, 2009 at 9:24 pm.

For a while, I wasn’t sure what story could possibly be safely posted on top of an interview with Dr Derek Smart. All things pale, right?

Hmm. A video should be okay. Just a nice video about a videogame, to ease us all on.

Oh dear. It’s a video about a bad-tempered megalomaniac wreaking destruction and torment upon all and sundry. This is going to be really, horribly misinterpreted by someone, isn’t it?


I’M JOKING! JOKING. It was just too hard to resist making the gag. Oh, you guys.

The video in question, which you can watch with your ocular eyes below, is a good old chunk of footage and information about strategy-RPG-thumpy-thing Overlord II. It’s a game I’m quietly looking forward to, even if I’m not predicting game of the year territory. The first one made some fairly critical design mistakes, but I still thought it was a delightful concept realised with genuine panache. I’m hoping that the mere fact of it making it to sequel stage is proof positive they know how to make it better, and fully intend to.

Here video here:

So, let’s recap, shall we?
– It’s now truly about being evil, as opposed to the first game’s A Little Bit Nasty, And Occasionally Quite Good If There Was Money In It. Which is what you want, really – I’m getting rather bored of harsh Manichean moral dichotomies in my videogames. Getting rid of all the chin-rubbing moral weighing-up in favour of being a proper cartoon supervillain hugely appeals.
– Overlad! Overlord Jr! Cute as a demonic button! This bodes well. Though frankly it’s a real shame the game isn’t called Overlord II: Overlad.
– Looks as though there’ll be rather more freedom of movement than the first game’s restrictive pathways. Overlord always had a certain amount in common with Fable, and perhaps unsurprisingly Overlord II seems a little like the less claustrophobic Fable II.
– I WASN’T REALLY CALLING DEREK SMART A BAD-TEMPERED MEGALOMANIAC.

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30 Comments »

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  1. Johnny Law says:

    If nothing else, this makes me curious about fetching the first one off of Steam if it ever goes on sale again. Guess I’ll give the PC demo a whirl.

    By the way… no offense, but a couple of days ago I put adblocker back on for RPS because of that “Click 2 Claim” banner ad that beeps repetitively. Is it safe yet to unleash my ad impressions again?

  2. Torgen says:

    After playing the Overlord demo on PC, I passed on the game. Didn’t feel evil AT ALL. I was looking for something more like playing the long-lost brother of Richard from the webcomic “Looking for Group”.

  3. Torgen says:

    Oy, I’d forgotten the boss fight, which just broke the vibe of the first game (demo) for me, but Alec’s review brought the memory flooding back: but already I’m acutely concious I shall never finish it. The Nintendian boss fights are infuriating, the levels all seem to be claustrophobically enclosed, linear paths, too often presenting artificial obstacles that are only obstacles because my superhuman Overlord is unable to climb onto two-foot ledges

    I think I could have borne the other things, but the “boss fight” just shattered the immersion and all interest on my part.

  4. Arnulf says:

    Last month I got Overlord: Raising Hell for 20 E’s. Was quite entertaining. However, the mouse/keyboard control scheme was not so funny. I yanked the xb360 controller from my white box and it was really quite cool and relaxed afterwards.

    The Raising Hell part added quite a bit of fun stuff to the board.

    I liked it. Looking forward to this one.

    Overlad… heh. I see what they did there. :)

  5. Larington says:

    Die, smelly furball!
    Yeah, hoping to see how good a job they do of correcting the originals core weakness’.

  6. Heliocentric says:

    Never felt like minions properly more like a swarm of wasps drawn the bead of light painted by a laser pen. Why a game like oblivion never properly implemented minions is beyond me. Sure i had fun with the goblin shaman staffs(they try to get it back or die trying) but being able to issue commands in a wide open game would be much more satisfying than overlords corridors.

    I kept the “staff of ever goblin” for ages but too so desperate was my desire for minions. And never does a dnd driven rpg allow you to sacrifice exp to amass an army undead, oh but the bad guys can do it.

    Sadly i know overlord 2 will be linear in plot, i need to go find a minion hoard mod for morrowind.

  7. JKjoker says:

    I liked Overlord a lot, my main problems with it were that you couldn’t upgrade anything other than your items and they got boring pretty fast (it really need some DMC style char development for the overlord), the ai was way too stupid (i understand that when a huge fat troll jumps over some midgets he probably will squish a few, but ALL 30 of them? come on at least SOME should try to avoid him without me calling them back, the Dev says they are smarter now but that sound a little too ambiguous) and the universal “rape button” didn’t work that well with “all” selected usually ending on all your blues and reds dead (they actually say they fixed this particular problem in the video, but only mention greens and browns i hope they fixed all of them)

  8. mejobloggs says:

    Overlord was so boring. Once I got past the initial hour of ‘heheh look at my minions’ I just couldn’t be bothered playing anymore

  9. DigitalSignalX says:

    Overlord was a fantastic game, full of dark humor and original game play, albeit a bit glitchy and sometimes very difficult to control. It was truly FUN trying to be either very evil, slightly evil, or diet caffeine free evil. I hope the sequel builds upon all the random comments, animations, and interactions your minions have that made the first one cool.

  10. skalpadda says:

    I rather liked Overlord, while it had many, many flaws it was perfect to have a relaxed run through a level at a time when I was sick of playing more “serious” games. Played in short bursts the annoying things never really started to grate (except the many boss fights toward the end), so maybe that’s why I have a more positive impression of it than most :)

    It’s one of the few games where the actual act of looting was genuinely fun as well. Ordering your little horde around to smash and pillage with cheery joy, proudly bringing you back the treasure (“For the Master!”) or stealing odd bits of armour and putting them on their heads (“For me!”). Fun!

    Was that a giant panda I saw being murdered there?

  11. Pijama says:

    THE OVERLAD

    man. Awesome.

  12. DMJ says:

    Poor background game footage action.

    A bunch of minions following the player character as he wanders around, apparently completely lost, does not a good impression make.

  13. Frank says:

    Seriously, a panda? wtf

  14. Caiman says:

    I played Overlord over Christmas on the recommendation of two people who loved it. I didn’t like the demo, but the full game was great fun and one of the few games in recent years I’ve enjoyed enough to finish. It wasn’t, as people keep pointing out, perfect but it was refreshingly good fun. Smashing stuff with the minions never, ever got old.

  15. Mal says:

    I see they haven’t changed the bloom-overload.

  16. Gerfervonbob says:

    Man mejobloggs, you missed out. The later sections of the game were the best, I loved fighting off the Dwarves!

  17. DragonSix says:

    The world needs a game where you play as Derek Smart.

  18. Jhoosier says:

    I’d like to see a minion mod for Fallout 3.

    Never finished the original Overlord, I got to a part that was rather difficult, and just stopped. Too puzzle-y. I don’t mind puzzles, but what I really wanted was to be evil in a wide-open world.

  19. Wacky says:

    I’m buying this just for the minimap,the only thing the original game lacked which resulted in me getting extremely lost all the time.

  20. Bhazor says:

    Heres hoping Pratchett manages a better story this time. I do feel kinda sorry for her given that shes well and truly stuck in her pa’s shadow.

  21. Premium User Badge

    MonkeyMonster says:

    I too got it cheap on el steamo and found it most enjoyable, but its resting atm because the big boss fight at the end is heinously hard :(

  22. the_magma says:

    flawed as he is, i’d rather have 15 interviews with derek smart than the marketing mindshite peddled by the chump in this video

  23. Ian says:

    I got bored of Overlord pretty quickly which was a shame because I found the world to be charming and the minions an absolute delight, I just couldn’t keep my interest up no matter how much I wanted to love it.

  24. phil says:

    Pratchet is trapped in her father’s shadow as she seemingly has built a semi-detached there – In Overlord’s ironic interpretations of fantasy tropes, there was nothing that couldn’t have come from the Discworld. That said, butchering pot-bellied hobbits was as big a guilty pleasure as reading, well pretty much any of the discworld books, so staying in your comfort zone does have some merit.

  25. Ginger Yellow says:

    As I’ve stated elsewhere, even in Overlord I couldn’t bring myself to be truly evil, which is pretty pathetic. So I’m glad they’re taking the goody two-shoes option away from me.

    I so nearly loved the game. Pikmin is probably my favourite Gamecube game, and Overlord is basically Pikmin meets Dungeon Keeper with design issues. The lack of a minimap killed the game – it just got too frustrating trying to figure out where to go, especially in that dark forest/swamp area. So I’m really looking forward to the sequel.

  26. Jim Rossignol says:

    “because of that “Click 2 Claim” banner ad that beeps repetitively”

    Re offensive adverts: mail me with their URL, i can usually get the blocked. Any that make a sound should be forwarded to me immediately.

  27. Pijama says:

    Rossignol means BUSINESS, I mean, look at the post. He isn’t fucking around.

  28. dash says:

    Bought and loved the 1st one, cant wait to see what the second one has to offer.

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