There are many worlds in one world. Some of them are known to the common men portraying themselves as harsh truths of the circumstances or a hopeful future...some of them are only known to people who seek things behind the illusionary curtain before our eyes. Age of Decadence makes you visit all these worlds at your leisure and with your style. Let us cut the fancy words and stab our knife deep into the meat of this game. What makes Age of Decadence, unique?
Age of Decadence is set on a post-apocalyptic world devastated by a war between the Empire and Qantari. The war, its consequences and the remnants (ruins, devices etc) from those times creates the mystical side of the lore but on the other hand the numerous factions vying for the power adds to the mundane part of the lore. As your character progresses, depending on your actions, background and character prowess you will find yourself uncovering things let it be political schemes, marvellous devices or simply glory of combat in the battlefield. Thus having a tasty background, Age of Decadence gives us a solid sign that it is a candidate to become a classic.
First of all, forget being a hero (though it is still possible) all the time since the game will allow you to back down from several dangerous situations...but once the die is cast...you'll have to live with its consequences. Depending on your character build (combat, non-combat, hybrid) you can find different kinds of solutions to a certain quest or mission. And mind you those different solutions may lead to different consequences. Your generosity towards a person may pay well later in the game or you might find yourself in difficult situations because some thugs marked you as a target due to your generosity. It is definitely a decadent world where you should READ and ASSESS the situation properly. If you do not notice the warning signs, understand the personality of the characters you are dealing with...you might find yourself in difficulty or pushing daisies.
The most striking part though...the cumulative effect the game presents you. From the start, you are subject to a different perspective on an assassination vignette where your background will affect it quite much. It will also make other NPCs of the starting town react differently. Such as, you might be the Assassin who is hired to kill the trader but perhaps you were the Mercenary whose duty was to protect the trader. Perhaps as a Mercenary you let the Assassin depart or avenged your employer and it may impress the Assassin's Guild (it is named as Boatmen of Styx and like every faction it has a neat backstory). Or you were merely a Drifter and heard some noises before stumbling upon the corpses of an assassin, a mercenary and a trader. I wouldn't want to spoil all vignettes here...regardless you will see from the start the game will offer you more depth into the matters.
Another striking point is the importance of factional relations. Don't expect to pay some sum to a shady man and magically all bad feelings are gone. Minor slights and such can be mended with some acts of goodwill...but if you screw some relations severely, you'll have to live with that and like every organization, Age of Decadence factions have enemies and allies in times of change. And even your personal allegiance can change at crucial times let it be for your personal gain, a change of ideals or merely you wish for some thrill. Choices and living up to their consequences...is the essence of this game.
Combat system is Action Point based where people should be familiar from Fallout series...This is one part I don't wish to go into detail because the game itself has a nice training mode where a starter player can try different types of weapons in order to get a hold of mechanics. As I said, don't be a hero and try this training :D
As one last positive, the demo of the game has the entire first chapter of the game with all its vignettes. You will not regret trying it out and will keep wanting more of it. I know I did and still do. I shall update the review for the future versions.