Avadon: The Black Fortress is an epic, Indie fantasy role-playing saga.
User reviews: Mostly Positive (221 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 17, 2011

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Packages that include this game

Buy Spiderweb Software Complete Pack

Includes 12 items: Avadon 2: The Corruption, Avadon: The Black Fortress, Avernum 4, Avernum 5, Avernum 6, Avernum: Escape From the Pit, Geneforge 1, Geneforge 2, Geneforge 3, Geneforge 4: Rebellion, Geneforge 5: Overthrow, Nethergate: Resurrection

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Recommended By Curators

"Old school fantasy RPG, well thought out story, dialog and characters, turn based combat, free character development. Shorter than other Spiderweb games"
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“Offers a classic RPG experience. Engrossing narrative. Hours of enjoyable gameplay.”
4/5 – Mac|Life

“As simple as it looks, it’s one of those games that’s very easy to fire up for a few minutes, only to be magically transported without supper to 5AM the next day.”
– Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“In the end, Avadon: The Black Fortress has everything a good RPG needs. Strong story and characters, great combat, excellent quests, addictive loot and leveling and high replayability.”
– Inside Mac Games

“I want an immersive game backed by a developer with integrity, and a desire to win fans one at a time. Spiderweb has that, and I hope they continue to honor us with games such as this one.”
5/5 – Adrenaline Vault

“This is a big, chunky game that retro RPG fans should absolutely adore.”
4.5/5 – Digitally Downloaded

“Anybody who pines for the days of the older, massive classics and decries the state of the new streamlined, big-budget RPGs needs to put their money where their mouth is and buy this game.”
90% – RPGFan

About This Game

Avadon: The Black Fortress is an epic, Indie fantasy role-playing saga. Form a band of skilled warriors, explore dungeons, hunt for treasure, learn many unique and powerful skills, and attempt to unravel a conspiracy that threatens to destroy your homeland!


Five great nations have banded together to form The Pact. The Pact is defended by Avadon, a secretive sect of spies and assassins. Its agents are everywhere. Its word is law.


You have been recruited as a Hand of Avadon, charged with missions that require swift action and a heavy fist. However, the enemies of the Pact have plans of their own, and Hands of Avadon are being picked off one by one. It will fall to you to struggle to survive and to reveal that plot that could shatter the safety of The Pact and plunge your homeland into chaos.


Beware! Allies are few. Traitors are everywhere. And the closer you come to the truth, the closer their assassins will come to you.


Key features:

  • Epic, Indie fantasy role-playing adventure in an enormous and unique world.
  • Four different character classes, with dozens of unique spells and abilities.
  • Uncover the fascinating history of Avadon and the land of Lynaeus.
  • Many different endings. Your choices will change the world.
  • Dozens of side quests, hidden dungeons, and secrets to discover.
  • Hundreds of magical items to find. Use enchanted crystals to make your artifacts even more powerful.
  • Huge adventure with lots of replay value.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • Operating system:Windows® XP / Vista™ / Windows® 7
    • Processor:1.6 GHz CPU
    • Memory:512 MB
    • Hard disk space:300MB
    • Video: OpenGL compliant graphics card
    • Sound:Sound card
    • OS: OS X 10.5 or later
    • Operating system:Ubuntu 12.04 or equivalent
    • Processor:1.6 GHz CPU
    • Memory:512 MB
    • Hard disk space:300MB
    • Video: OpenGL compliant graphics card
    • Sound:Sound card
Helpful customer reviews
28 of 31 people (90%) found this review helpful
53.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
A very well-crafted game world. What the writing lacks in concision it makes up for in quality. The RPG gameplay is engaging, if not a bit OCD-inducing. My major gripe with the game would be the repetitive ambient sounds used in place of music, but that mostly comes my having previously played other Spiderweb Software games that also recycled these sounds. Still, though, the gameplay and player-influenceable story are more than enough to make the game worth playing on their own.

Edit: after reading some of the other reviews, I should mention that I'm playing on Casual (not ashamed to admit it), so I'm not really experiencing some of the difficulty-related complaints that others are. Pretty much the only difficulty-related thing I'm running into is that I don't really have a chance to use up my consumables fast enough on Casual, so I probably waste more time managing my inventory than I might on a harder difficulty. But that's very minor.
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19 of 22 people (86%) found this review helpful
41.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Spiderwb Software is know for their old-school RPGs, and rightfully so. Intersting NPCs, well thought out story, and a well designed world that feels alive. Character advancment is solid and reminds me of Diablo 2. The combat is turn based and fairly well balanced. If you get stuck, or find it too easy, you can adjust the difficulty in game. I'm at 40+ hours at the time of writing this and I think I'm (maybe) half way through, so there's plenty of content for your money. Oh.. and no random encounters to frustrate you when you just trying to get around. Once you clear out an area, it stays clear.

That said, the graphics can be hard on the eyes. Literaly. If your screen isn't huge and you turn the resolution all the way up. It makes the text tiny (and there's lots of text!). Moving around gets a little tedious at times when quests have you running back and forth. (There is quick travel, but it only goes so far.)

This game isn't for everyone, but fans of classic PC RPGs will enjoy the nostalgia. I know I did.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
24.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 18
My recommendation comes with a caveat, I am only recommending this to people who enjoy turn-based cRPGs. I personally am not a fan of turn based combat, which is the reason I eventually gave up on finishing the game.

Visually and audibly, the game is nothing to write home about, being made by one person it is understanable and they are functional enough not to detract from the game in any major way.

Gameplay in my opinion is bland and uninspired, the turn based combat is quite slow and you are often faced with trash mobs that make the game stutter along at a slow pace. Later battles are frustratingly difficult, as you have to spend a long time clicking through the turns before you sometimes realise you haven't a hope of winning and have to reload. I eventually got sick of trying to beat a particular fight and called it quits.

Where the game shines is in its writing and story, I really enjoyed pouring over the descriptions of locations and the characterisation is pretty good in the people you meet. I find it a shame I couldn't bring myself to finish the game because I would have liked to know what happens.

So I will recommend this game to people who are into old school turn-based cRPGs, but if slow pacing and turn-based combat make you yawn you might want to check elsewhere.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
73.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
This was the first turn-based game I'd played since SW: Knights of the Old Republic.

I enjoyed the storyline although to be fair it was rather predictable. The variety of playing partners helped add to my enjoyment as well as their individual quests and motives added to the story.

The difficulty level was just enough for me as a casual gamer to be challenging, but not so overwelming that I had to resort to cheats.

I look forward to playing the sequel.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
65.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 13
Easily one of the most entertaining RPG's I've played since Morrowind. Has a pretty solid lore that give way to a genuinly intersting storyline with well written characters.

If you like strategic isometric turnbased RPG's, and are willing to look past the kinda meh graphics, then you will absolutely love this game. A solid 8.5/10 from someone who doesn't rate things lightly.

NOTE: Push past the graphics, you can do it. it's ♥♥♥♥in worth it.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
40.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 12
This is an amazing old school RPG, with an atmosphere very reminiscent of Fallout. Combat is turn-based and very tactical: range, position and zones of control are important, as well as proper use of character abilities. The party composition will vary, the player will usually have the main character as well as two out of four NPCs in his party.

Additionally, this game is perfect for loot♥♥♥♥♥ players :P since there are no weight limits for the backpack. The weird isometric perspective takes about an hour to get used to, the controls are otherwise very intuitive.

The story is quite original, for a fantasy game, and the characters are well fleshed out. The game is fairly linear, but there are many choices and optional missions along the way, and the story does give you a choice during some important moments. I very much recommend this for anyone looking to play a classic and fun RPG
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
14.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 13
IT'S ABOUT TIME!

Frankly this is probably old news to many of you reading this. I'm ashamed that I didn't know about these "Spiderweb" titles previously.

Gather round me children, for there's a tale I'd like to share. Once there was a time when video games entertained the player an immersive story and provocative challenges that kept you playing for hours.

I've never liked the term "dungeon crawler". To me the "crawler" part implies "slow" which let's be honest, is associated with "boring" in the world of books, movies and video games. When was the last time you couldn't wait to dig in to a "slow" book someone recommended?
So when I saw that genre ascribed to this and other "Spiderweb" titles I dismissed them pretty quickly. I didn't feel like click-spamming my way through another shallow DC chasing the next-best weapon for hours on end - mindlessly racing to the next waypoint, only taking breaks to managing a mountain of gear (/cough...torchlight)...

So as I was browsing my games library through titles I'll never get to and I barely recognize, the term "turn-based" caught my eye.
"Turn-based"...dungeon-crawler?
Now that's a name I"ve not heard in a long time. A long time.

I must have played through "Planescape: Torment" three times since it's release. The same can be said for Fallout 1 & 2.
I can't chalk up their awesome replayablility to nostalgia any more. These are simply incredibly entertaining titles and the reason I've played them all so often is that nothing after (to my knowledge) ever properly took up where they left off. Well that was until I discovered this game.

This game, like Planescape and Fallout 1&2 focus on story depth, simple, intuitive UI/game mechanics, and challenging "strategic" (yet simple) combat. I don't mean "simple" as in "easy", I just mean you will very quickly become well-versed your battle "playbook" and the challenge lies in making good decisions as it is turn-based.
If you're familiar Fallout 1 & 2 or Planescape Torment then to put it simply this game is very similar to those but in a classic fantasy setting. It's also a nice reminder of the days when RPG titles didn't hold your hand every step of the way. The quest descriptions are clear, but the objectives are kept broad enough keep the players guessing as to how exactly to complete them.

Combine all of the above with perfectly classic "if-it-ain't-broke" fantasy RPG elements and you have this surprisingly impressive game. I can't recommend this title enough for "old-school" PC nerds like myself as well as newcomers.

I could go on and on but I gotta get back to the game.
I give it 2 ogre-thumbs up
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
66.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
Fantastic. I love games that you can take your time with and explore, and it's good enough to play again and lust after sequels.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
27.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 21
I really loved this game. It has a nice isometric view, interesting story and it brings back all the happy memories of me in my teenage years, playing shareware versions of older Spiderweb Software games!
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
Great game but hard to navigate.
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5 of 9 people (56%) found this review helpful
91.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 11
Finally beated it after 91h of addictive playing! Last boss was killed in 1,5h fight on EASIEST difficulty, so I recommend this hardcore RPG for all, who likes high skill turn-based games like Fallout Tactics, BG1/2, Icewind Dale etc.
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213 of 262 people (81%) found this review helpful
40.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 27
I bought this game a long time ago for a decent amount of money, but since it's a long game, I postponed playing it... Until recently.

Many of the "recommended" reviews here are from people who spent a very, very short time playing Avadon. Had I written such a review when I was only a couple of hours into the game, it would have been positive, too. It was very fun at the start... but then it became profoundly NOT fun.

You see, early on, you have a couple of quests and a couple of locations. You have various characters, you find items, battles are nice, you get better loot, your characters work in synergy... And then the game suddenly becomes a chore. Quests pile up. The quest texts never get updated. There are no indicators anywhere about the people you need to visit or return to. No indicator of what you need to do. I spent a lot of time going around and talking to people, only to find out that a quest isn't over. The loot doesn't scale up. Your damage doesn't scale up. And the game difficulty (I played on "normal") suddenly switches to "most frustrating game ever". You die. You die a lot. You are too weak. You need luck with the RNG, and you need potions and scrolls in greater amounts that you can obtain. Your abilities are on a large cooldown. Again, not enough potions to alleviate that. To add insult to injury, you spend vitality on abilities and vitality *does not recharge by itself*. You need to basically go back to the Avadon fortress on a semi-regular basis. There's no real quick-travel system, so every time you want to do that, you're looking at about five wasted minutes.

About 15 hours in, I seriously contemplated quitting right there and then; but I said to myself "you spent more on this than on many other games, so you NEED to finish it". I had a quest to follow a warrior into the woods and clear out some spiders. "Some" turned out to be about four nests of four to five spiders each. They were teleporting spiders which cast corrupting spells and thus did a lot of damage-over-time. Took me an hour to finally win that sidequest. Okay, I said, this is one of the harder battles; let's continue. Then I found what was an almost unbeatable Shade. Somehow managed to get that done as well. Then I found an evil Drake that spawned minions *and* mind-controlled several tough soldiers (EDIT: forgot to mention that it was HEALING those soldiers, so every time you came close to killing one, it would be healed to max HP; repeat 4-5 times, while your characters die and you've spent all of your potions). That... that was unbeatable, and it was the turning point at which I resorted to cheats: bumped my characters to level 30, then constantly used healing, shields and ability cooldown reset.

I gave up on the sidequests. I have no idea where I found most of the people and what I needed to do next (again - the quest system is extremely rudimentary and doesn't tell you anything). Even with constant cheating, it took me a total of 40 hours to finish the main story line.

Disregard the "recommended" reviews, honestly, and check the achievements:

Only 1/3 of the total number of players met a certain NPC called Redbeard, and that happens *very* early into the game.

Only 1/50 (a measly 2%) of the players finished Avadon. Two percent. Wow.

You see all those <40hr reviews? Yeah, they recommended a game they never finished. If it's so fun and great and awesome, why did they stop playing? Because of the issues I mentioned here. Let's not even get into "OMG BEST GAME EVER!!11" reviews from people with 1-5 hours in.

Skip this. Honestly. Even if you get this in a bundle, it's just not worth playing. Get an RPG that's actually fun.

If you *do* feel masochistic and try to play without cheating, I'll give you a tip: in this game, Dexterity rules. Get it to a minimum of 25.

Highly not recommended.
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54 of 66 people (82%) found this review helpful
7.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 12, 2013
Avadon: The Black Fortress is a fine modern RPG made in the old-school style. Except better: no swapping floppy disks or CDs! But it makes me a little sad to say that it feels like a chore to play.

Visually, Avadon exists in a 1995 timewarp: Better looking than the SSI "Gold Box" D&D RPGs, but not as nice as the Baldur's Gate era games from Bioware/Black Isle.

But Avadon isn't so concerned about appearances. What makes this old-looking game work in 2013 is how fluid the experience is. It looks dated, but it streamlines gameplay, and adds modern features like skill trees, and the ability to scale the game difficulty if you want to move more quickly through the game's difficult bits. And your character speeds around the screen! No more waiting as your party trudges around the map; this game respects your time, as your characters hustle around in loose formation.

But this fast game pace brings me to the part that I don't like. Avadon is big on prose, like RPGs used to be. Avadon makes up for its stick-figure graphics by providing rich, descriptive storytelling. There's a lot of reading to be done, and no voice acting. So far, so good.

But in Avadon, your character moves so quickly from encounter to encounter, you find yourself reading constantly. There's no break. It's like reading a book. Frankly, I find myself resenting how much reading this game is asking me to do. And I kept nodding off as I was playing.

Baldur's Gate was probably a 80 hour game. Avadon makes me wonder how much of that time was just trudging around on the screen, revealing the dark parts. Walking from place to place. The pace was slow, but maybe that was an intentional break from all the reading we were asked to do back then. Walk a little, fight a little, walk a little, read a little. In Avadon, it feels like read-run-read-run-read-run. So... much... reading.

I recommend Avadon, because I respect how fine of a job Spiderweb has done to streamline old game mechanics, while still maintaining a flavorful, old-school feeling. And the story's good! But bring your spectacles; you're going to be doing a lot of reading as you play.

On a related note, I recently purchased a pack of classic Bioware RPGs from GOG.com. I plan to go back and finish the games from that era that I never played -- Baldur's Gate 2, Icewind Dale. I look forward to seeing how I feel about playing these games 15 years later. Will the pacing feel better than Avadon? Stay tuned to find out.
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37 of 42 people (88%) found this review helpful
47.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2013
If you're familiar with Spiderweb Software's RPGs, it will come as no surprise that Avadon: The Black Fortress is another extensive old school party-based trek through areas full of nooks and crannies with unique encounters and secret loot caches to be had, as well as exciting set piece encounters and an intriguing overall narrative. That's pretty much true of everything they put out. The big changes to the formula are: a new world; a significantly more linear progression than most of the other entries in their lineup, a class-and-skill-tree approach to character builds, and party members who are fully fledged NPCs that contribute insights and dialogue throughout the plot as you move through it, can be spoken to between missions, and have their own side agendas you will have to deal with.

The new world is an intriguing fantasy setting where five disparate and feuding lands have banded together in a defensive pact against pirates, invading empires, marauding humanoids and dragons, a blighted magical corruption, and other exterior threats. The pact is held together by the dictatorial enforcement of the Black Fortress Avadon, and they maintain a network of spies and enforcement agents to ensure compliance. The fairly unique conceit of this particular entry (and who knows, perhaps followup games in the series) is that you play Hands of Avadon, sent to enforce the laws of the pact and defend it from threats within and without. This gives you rather more authority and a much more fearsome reputation than your typical band of wandering adventurers, and this is used to good effect throughout, although alas you still have to contend with buying your own supplies, a tired RPG trope that seems even more out of place in this context (though they do attempt to explain it).

The linearity is somewhat unfortunate, but things do open up as you gain access to more of the areas and return to zones on new missions, and most of the sidequests can be done at your leisure. Still, the flipside of linearity is that you're always being sent into challenges that you should be equipped to handle, and it's always clear what you're expected to do next, neither of which are guaranteed in more open formats.

I am personally a big fan of Avadon's approach to skills and classes. I find the structure of new ability at rank 1, additional effect(s) at later ranks, and unlocking a secondary ability at a late rank very rewarding and I never feel like my points are wasted or that I have to save points from level to level just to advance at all, which have been issues I've historically had with the more freeform skill approach earlier Spiderweb games took (and other games with skill systems, for that matter). And Avernum in particular suffered from boring fighter syndrome where spellcasters got huge suites of spells to cast for a varied combat experience and fighters...got to hit things. Not here. The Blademaster class even passively is a blast, with heavy passive investment rewarding cleaves, a hilariously effective level of hit prevention, and the chance to riposte, curse enemies, or begin regenerating if hit, and then on top of that gets group buffs and debuffs and attacks with additional secondary effects. The Shadowwalker hurls shurikens, teleports around, throws pots of acid and smoke bombs, backstabs and poisons, and is a huge fountain of damage in general. (Needless to say, I was pleased when the Avernum remake cribbed from this system, albeit in a more Avernum-y way.)

As for the NPCs - there's one of every type, you get them all pretty nearly immediately, they stay levelled with you even if you're not using them, and they all have interesting personalities and backstories. I've never been a huge fan of the "party too large for everyone to simultaneously adventure with you" thing, but this is about as good as it gets considering that.

So all in all, another classic RPG. It's not quite as old school as previous series from Spiderweb, but the deviations from that formula mostly are in the vein of improvements in RPG design, in my book, not stepping away from the core appeal.
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59 of 86 people (69%) found this review helpful
50.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 11
It took me around 50 hours to play through this turn-based oldschool RPG made by Spiderweb Software. I bought it with 75% off, but I wouldn't recommend it. Only Linux users may find some value in this game. Windows users should pay GOG a visit and get some really classic RPGs. Why, you will ask. Let me explain:

The Good
The story about the Black Fortress that ensures peace in The Pact by bringing evils foes to justice really appealed to me. There are interesting characters, lots of background information and quickly I found myself playing for hours without even realising how much time went by. Thanks to unique boss fights, combat never gets too repeating. The skill trees are also easy to comprehend. Last but not least, the absence of question marks above NPCs to indicate aviable quests, whose destinations are not marked on the map, made the whole thing a bit more realistic. Just once or twice I wasn't 100% sure what to do, but in the end it became clear.

The Bad
Some fights are unbalanced and almost impossible to win. I played on "normal" difficulty, but I still had problems from time to time. You often get the feeling that the AI is cheating; they have so many more action points to spend every round, but your characters only manage to use one or two skills at most. Futhermore, skills that stun or immobilise your characters are in some cases so fatal that you can only watch your party die without being able to do anything. The dialoques with average NPCs never really matter; you can make them angry, so that they abort the conservation, but when you talk to them once more, everything's fine again. Only selected NPCs "listen" to what you have to say. Another major annoyance are the traders, whose inventory never replenishes. Bought all lockpicks? He/ she won't get new ones to sell...While playing you will end up with many locked doors that couldn't be opened. Some of them are even quest-related, which means you are not able to complete certain ones. Equipped items never change the appearence of the characters. So even if you gained the best gear you can possibly get, your party will always look like it just left Avadon for the first time.

Probably, there are even more things that ruin Avadon: The Black Fortress, but these were the ones that bugged me the most. However, it's not a bad game at all. It's just not for everyone and there are much better alternatives out there.
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19 of 22 people (86%) found this review helpful
70.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 7, 2013
If you like (old-school) RPGs and lots of reading then this is the thing just for you.
Play time for this game is about 70-80h which is "normal" for that sort of game I would say.
The only problems I found were the lack of music and that some choices you were given werent actual choices at all. Meaning that whether you choose this or that made no difference whatsoever.

Dont even bother trying to fight Redbeard. IMPOSSIBLE is the understatement of the century.
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21 of 27 people (78%) found this review helpful
76.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 20
Graphically, Avadon is very basic and quite primitive. The sounds also bear this same basic style, with the only music you will hear being from the main menu. All in-game sounds are done adequately though. You will hear your enemies roar and groan, coins, equipment, magic, and all other sounds you may come to expect from a fantasy setting. You should expect to do an immense amount of reading throughout the game. Because of this, the overall gameplay experience seems notably slow paced. While the story and gameplay are rudimentary, Avadon does flow, and there is fun to be had with the turn based combat, item looting, and enhancing the members of your party. Mouse clicking gets severely unresponsive as you play, causing the user to click each action three times or more. This is a major problem. To correct this, all one could do is play the game fresh from a system reboot. Within ten to fifteen minutes after the reboot, the mouse clicking and performance problems will return and stay. Very slowly, the game becomes more interesting and more challenging. The way quests are completed is somewhat awkward. You must go back to the exact place where the quest originated from, and go through the NPC dialog, exclaiming that whatever deed has been done. This would be okay if the map marked where these places are located, or where such NPCs are, but map markings are far from complete. Some quests are so ambiguous, that I found no other way to complete them other than looking at maps made available online. Several of the quests were created in such a way that they nitpick the player into minute details that are very difficult to discern. Avadon seems to drag itself most of the way, mostly because of its slow pace and repetitive game play, but also because of its drab visuals and minimal sounds. Some enemies can be challenging, and interesting to fight against. The variety in creatures is not expansive nor creative, but Avadon manages to keep the encounters enjoyable. The boss battles are difficult, exciting, and fun. The way abilities, spells, and vitality work together is both fair and balanced, providing for an appealing strategy between the usage of weapons and the rest of each character's repertoire. Ultimately, you will become acquainted with your character's powers, and you will eventually appreciate the game's subtle entertainment. The storyline is not very imaginative, nor is it very absorbing. It is conventional in every way imaginable. Also, once you defeat enemies located in a certain area, they will not respawn. Some of the keyboard shortcuts only allow you to activate their respective windows. Pressing the same keyboard shortcut does not deactivate the window. This is minor, but it is still a problem nonetheless. The quests are varied, but feel repetitive in execution. This is mostly because the environs and enemies look very similar from one to the next. Some of your adversaries are so arrogant that you will hate them and enjoy being the reason for their ultimate demise. The most rewarding part of Avadon involves leveling up your characters, equipping the discovered loot, and enhancing their specific abilities. The game often causes serious temporary problems with Windows if you Alt-Tab out of it. Performance issues are borderline ridiculous for a game with such a minimalist design and coarse implementation. In addition, the developer programmed the game to change the speakers' settings in Windows and not return them to the setup it was originally saved to. This is totally unacceptable. The performance problems in conjunction with the other developmental issues is proof of clearly awful programming, or at the very least inadequate porting from the original Mac version. There is basically no creativity whatsoever in Avadon. Every aspect of the game has been done before, for PC and consoles, even in the 80s. After a long while of repetitive, bland, and lackluster gameplay, you will hope for the game to end as soon as possible, but it doesn't. Avadon is clearly 50 hours too long. Much could have been condensed to save players from the tedium. After withstanding the exaggerated amount of hours, the final battle is incredibly frustrating, boring, and poorly implemented. In the end, I decided to quit trying and take a different dialogue path to complete the game. It is that bad. If you would like to read about how poorly designed the final battle is and how much players have complained, peruse the official forums. You won't have anything spoiled, as the ending could have been foreseen from the first half hour of play. This is all quite unfortunate. The finale left me with a feelings of time wasted and disappointment. I understand that the game was designed by one person, but with independent developers often excelling the multi-million Dollar studios, there is no excuse for poor execution anymore.

Avadon: The Black Fortress is okay.
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29 of 42 people (69%) found this review helpful
46.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 17
The game doesn't have great visuals nor any music ingame, but that isn't why I give a negative rating. It starts quite interesting and the design of the first 'dungeon' is really good. Levelling the first ten levels makes your character a lot stronger plus the story and characters get you interested in more. I'd say after around half of the game it falls apart. The levelling gets boring and the combat tedious as every enemy uses special abilities every round to increase the difficulty. This is just annoying and slows the game down to a halt. The locations are overly reused and the story rushes towards the grand finale without making much sense anymore.

Overall it's a not really bad turn based RPG, but it's simply not worth your time eventually. There are better RPGs out there and you should be playing them instead.
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13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
144.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 9, 2013
ok, it looks bad, but I like it - and I am not a huge fan of old school RPGs. it's well written and it's a pleasure to watch the developement of the story, but beware: you need time to play this one, because is a really long journey...
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12 of 16 people (75%) found this review helpful
44.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 16
While the game doesn't look like much and also won't win any prizes for sound design (I do like the opening theme, though), the gameplay and storytelling is really good.

The game is a text-heavy turn-based RPG, in which you control your character and up to two companions and guide them through various lands in hopes to protect the Pact, which is the goal of the inhabitants of the Black Fortress.
And not only do you have your typical main quest, but lots of sidequests, which can give you money, valuable items or information, but also might change the outcome of the game, depending on the choices you make.

The game starts out pretty easy. You don't have to mind positioning of your character or the use of consumables much, but both becomes more important the more you progress. Especially in the later parts it is vital to use potions, spells and other things at your disposal, unless you want to have a really hard time.

As I've said, the game is text-heavy, so you should brace yourself for lots to read. The writing is really good though, even if the graphical represantation of the written isn't.

If you don't mind the poor graphics and sound, have no problem with reading and like turn-based RPGs, than this is a game to consider.
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