Avago: Avadon 2 – The Corruption Is Out, Plus Demo

By John Walker on November 1st, 2013 at 10:00 am.

Spiderweb’s Jeff Vogel has been making RPGs for twenty years, but I only caught onto them a couple of years back. But my tardiness doesn’t dampen my enthusiasm to learn his new game is now out. Avadon 2: The Corruption, the sequel to 2011′s Avadon: The Black Fortress, is out today. And it promises lots of improvements over the last, already very decent game, based on player feedback.

We spoke to Vogel about the fantastic success of his Humble Weekly Sale back in July, and found out about how important feedback is to him. It’s with this promise that Avadon 2 appears, but loyal fans need not worry about sweeping changes. There’s something peculiarly comforting about his lo-fi top-down RPGs, with their extremely familiar artwork and sound effects. A green robe is still a green robe, because of course the pictures serve to tell the story he wants to tell. Money has not changed things.

However, changes there are. This time out you can play as a female or male character in any of five classes, and he promises they spent quite a bit on adding new art this time out. There’s also promise of more meaningful choices for characters to make, and multiple endings. Although truth be told, I’ve yet to reach the end of any of them – I play for ages, have a great time, and then get distracted by the next shiny bauble. I’d have to quit my job to get through them, despite my job being to get through them.

Maddeningly, one of the changes not made to this game is keyboard shortcuts also closing menus as well as opening them. Argh! Please! Please just patch it in, Mr Vogel! It’s so infuriating.

But that aside, it’s on Steam for just £5.60, and you can pick up the free demo here. You would usually be able to buy it directly from Spiderweb’s site for a much larger fee, but right now their MySQL seems a touch broken. While the two games are related, you don’t need to have played the first to pick this one up, it’s worth noting.

Yeah, my plan was to load it up, check it works, and then get a screenshot for this post. It’s some hours later now. Oops.

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24 Comments »

  1. Gravy100 says:

    “Maddeningly, one of the changes not made to this game is keyboard shortcuts also closing menus as well as opening them. Argh! Please! Please just patch it in, Mr Vogel! It’s so infuriating.”

    Oh for goodness sake, patch it in Vogel, how many people have to say this, its so annoying!

    • karthink says:

      I guess this is one of those things both Vogel and his testers are used to by now and simply don’t register as a problem.

    • Jimbo says:

      Played some of Avadon. The entire UI feels like it was designed by somebody who has never touched a game before in their life. It’s quite remarkable considering just how much experience they have of making this one, very specific style of game over and over again.

      The art you can put down to budget restraints and that’s fair enough, but there’s really no excuse for the interface still being as dated and clumsy as it is.

      • Bulrathi says:

        Probably the most infuriating thing about the lack of keyboard shortcuts is that the Spiderweb games from the 90s could be run completely mouse free. For some reason, I refuse to play Vogel RPGs with a mouse. It seems unnatural. Get the keyboard commands back and I’ll come back too.

        • Moraven says:

          This type of game would work well with a controller. I could see the mouse free system working.

      • Michael Fogg says:

        A shortcut to close windows? ‘Press B to close window’ maybe? Are you some kind of a console-tard? You’d like it all streamlined, wouldn’t you? An interface designed for your lowest common denominator? Can’t handle the slightest bit of complexity? Pah!

        • MellowKrogoth says:

          No, retarded troll. What he wants is the key I to close the inventory as well as open it instead of being forced to reach for ESC everytime.

      • mouton says:

        Many games, if not most, have interfaces ranging from horrible to deeply flawed.

        So please, spare your internet hyperbole of condemnation.

    • MellowKrogoth says:

      Yeah, the interface in Vogel’s games is extremely annoying. How he has not fixed sore points like this one in YEARS is beyond me… he must only listen to his 10-fanboys club in the forum who praise everything he does.

      (For the record I like the story and content of Avernum, but that doesn’t prevent me from seeing the many flaws in the game(s). Haven’t played Avadon yet.)

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  2. GameCat says:

    These RPGs aren’t games for me, but that guy is my personal game dev hero. How you can make ~10 or more huge RPGs almost only by yourself? *_*
    He is clearly superhero whose superpower is Ultra Time Management and he have Anti-Procrastination and High-Productivity perks.

    • Snargelfargen says:

      I remember reading an interview where he explained that he was basically completely merciless when it comes to cutting out content and feature creep. The main reason he hasn’t put more work into the series’ sound and graphics is because it wouldn’t provide a decent return on investment (Time spent implementing the assets and money spent on artists). I think a lot of the fledgling kickstarter projects out there could learn from Vogel’s example. Of course it helps that he has a niche product that has attracted a loyal fanbase.

  3. SanguineAngel says:

    I REALLY need to finish the first one.

    • mouton says:

      While Avadon 1 has its issues, I can tell you it is worth finishing.

  4. Premium User Badge cpt_freakout says:

    Also on GOG for $7.50: http://www.gog.com/game/avadon_2_the_corruption

  5. aliksy says:

    Does it still have that awful hp/mana system where hp is restored quickly for free, but mana does not regenerate? Because I really didn’t like that. It encouraged never using your cool powers unless you really had to, and it didn’t matter how close-to-losing you came in any encounter so long as you won. It also made metagame knowledge (eg: knowing the next time you can rest so you can budget your resources) even more potent than normal, which is frustrating.

  6. rusty5pork says:

    Did he fix the shitty inventory system!?

    NO?!

    …. I will probably play the crap out of it anyway.

    • mouton says:

      What shitty inventory system? At worst, it is like every rpg ever, except you can also use keyboard shortcuts.

      Also, the junk bag is the best RPG invention ever. Shift+click on any item and it lands there, ready to be sold with one click at any store.

  7. Premium User Badge Rizlar says:

    Is that Hermione in the top-left?

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  9. strangeloup says:

    I tried the demo, but for some reason it was intermittently really flickery when running it in a window. Pretty sure this hasn’t happened with any of their other games for me.

    Anyone else had this problem, or is it maybe graphics drivers or something on my end?

  10. warthurton says:

    I’m not going to begrudge the developer his choice in pricing, but I really wonder why it is $20 on his site and $10 on Steam/GOG (regular price). I usually try to buy direct from developer to give them more of the cash, but this is really weird.

    Any ideas as to why he would price like that?

    • NathanH says:

      Presumably the idea is that you can get a lot more sales on Steam and so on if your price is rather lower than the core audience of the game would be willing to pay. So you make the game cheaper than it “ought” to be on these platforms to pick up those many people, and you come out on top. On your personal website, you’re less likely to even be viewed by people outside the core audience, therefore you can put the price at the “correct” level for them.

      It’s a bit strange, in that it’s a system that tries to get more money from people who like your type of game the most, but on the other hand if those people are willing to pay that much I guess why not? I don’t really like it that much, but I can vaguely see the point.