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Icewind Dale - Retrospective Part 2 by Lilura

by Silver, Tuesday - January 10, 2017 04:42

The second part of Liluras retrospective on the original Icewind Dale is available to peruse now.

P R O L O G U E : E A S T H A V E N

The travel-worn party begins the adventure warming themselves by the hearth in the Winter's Cradle Tavern. A scripted cutscene fires in which a veteran warrior from Hillsfar steps into the common room and introduces himself as Hrothgar. In tutorial-like tone he informs the party of his position as protector of the town and politely requests that they meet him at his lodge after they have rested and equipped themselves for adventure. So kicks off the main quest of the campaign...

Each member of the party begins with a trusty quarterstaff in hand and a nest egg based on their class, as per AD&D rules; e.g, the Warrior range is 50-200 GP. Collectively, this starting gold is enough to deck out traditional six-person parties at the emporium run by the pompous Calashite merchant, Pomab Ak'azmhir. However, presumably due to the remoteness of Easthaven and the orc raid on the caravan from Caer-Dinival, both the quantity and quality of his stocks are low; e.g, only one Large Shield, one Composite Longbow, no Plate Mail, and nothing magical in nature on offer. In fact, it is quite possible that certain party compositions will venture into the orc-infested starter dungeon feeling a lil' under-equipped. And you know what? That's fine.


Icewind Dale - Retrospective by Lilura

by Silver, Friday - December 30, 2016 10:28

Lilura has posted the first part of a retrospective on the original Icewind Dale.

Icewind Dale: In-depth Retrospective on the Original Incarnation - Part I

Hi there! And welcome to the first part of my in-depth retrospective on the original incarnation of Icewind Dale, an RPG developed and published by Black Isle Studios and released in the year 2000. The following comments, criticisms and pro-tips pertain to version 1.06 of Icewind Dale; that is, just the original campaign (OC) itself without the Heart of Winter & Trials of the Luremaster expansions installed (i.e, version 1.42). That said, I may dedicate a future post noting how Heart of Winter imbalances the base campaign despite its thugged out encounter design and itemization nerfs. In addition, for the purposes of this retrospective I am unconcerned with community-made mods and the Enhanced Edition, an overhaul by Beamdog that has modified the game, for good and for bad. Please refer to my separate Enhanced Edition Review for info on the differences between the Black Isle and Beamdog versions of IWD. I also refer the reader to my ongoing Baldur's Gate In-depth Retrospective (Parts I-IV) for more info on the Infinity Engine because I won't be repeating what I have written there.


Icewind Dale - Retrospective @ PCGamesN

by Couchpotato, Friday - February 06, 2015 00:39

Jeremy Peel of PCGamesN posted a new retrospective for Icewind Dale.

Icewind Dale was Black Isle’s attempt to bash out a quick action RPG in Baldur's Gate's Infinity Engine. Because they were the studio who'd built Fallout, however, they failed miserably: accidentally making a coherent world of Faerun's northern wastes, and filling its dungeons with tangled networks of tactical battles. It’s still one of the best mistakes you can play on the PC today.


Icewind Dale - Past, Present and Future @ GameBanshee

by Dhruin, Friday - October 28, 2011 23:51

GameBanshee has a piece called Icewind Dale: The Past, Present and Future. As I write this, our editor shows me our last Icewind Dale newsbit was a retrospective at GameBanshee, so I guess someone is a fan over there. This article is mostly retrospective but then turns to the "persistent rumors" that Obsidian might revisit the IP:

It's worth considering, however, what form or shape such a product would take in the modern gaming world. Given today's technology, possibly even Obsidian's own Onyx Engine (most recently used for Dungeon Siege III), it's fair to say that Icewind Dale's stunning landscapes could be realized in even more detail and with more life than ever before. However, given recent job postings at Obsidian looking for 2D character artists with Adobe Flash familiarity, it seems even more probable that such a game could be released across multiple platforms, or even in a browser-based format. Both possibilities hold a lot of promise, especially as a Flash-based option could make for a game that's playable on everything from smartphones, to tablets, to desktop PCs, and it's ideally suited for the point-and-click gameplay that touchscreens are able to support.

Icewind Dale Complete - Released on GoG

by Skavenhorde, Wednesday - October 06, 2010 14:38

GoG has released another classic. This time it's Icewind Dale. The game comes with it's two expansion packs-Heart of Winter and Trials of the Luremaster, 2 manuals, 4 HD wallpapers, 2 soundtracks, 10 avatars, 24 artworks, a map and a screensaver. Icewind Dale Complete is $9.99 and a 1.5gb download. You can get it, here.


Icewind Dale - Revisited @ GameBanshee

by Dhruin, Saturday - March 17, 2007 23:09

GameBanshee has published a truckload of new material in a huge Icewind Dale retrospective.  Aside from content additions to their walkthrough and resources, there are interviews with Josh Sawyer, Chris Parker and Scott Everts.  Let's take a bit from J.E. Sawyer:

GB: What was it like to be a part of the development team for each of these projects? Any fond memories you can share with us?

Josh: Icewind Dale was fantastic for me because I had somehow stumbled into my dream job.  I didn’t know anything about CRPG development, but I knew more about AD&D and the Forgotten Realms than anyone outside of TSR/WotC should.  We didn’t have any leads on the original title, so we sort of just... did things... with Chris Parker telling us when we were being dumb.

Scott Warner (the designer of Upper Dorn’s Deep) and I will always remember Greedy Ghost, which is referenced to this day.  Someone (who shall remain nameless) asked why the dwarf priest ghost in Upper Dorn’s didn’t charge the party for healing services.  Scott and I explained that it was a ghost and ghosts don’t have any need for money.  That Someone then replied, “Maybe he’s a greedy ghost.”

After Icewind Dale shipped, Feargus forwarded us an e-mail from Brian Fargo in which he said that he really enjoyed Icewind Dale and it was the first game in years that he had finished.  I knew Icewind Dale was a flawed game, but I grew up on Bard’s Tale, so that meant a lot to me.

I was also pretty happy when we finally got most of the major 3E stuff into Icewind Dale 2.  Danien Chee, Bernie Weir, Rich “Malavon” Finegan, and Darren Monahan really gutted a lot of the Infinity Engine’s game logic to make 3E work in it, and I think our implementation of the rule set was fantastic.

Information about

Icewind Dale

Developer: Black Isle

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Combat: Pausable Real-time
Play-time: 40-60 hours
Voice-acting: Partially voiced

Regions & platforms
North America
· Platform: PC
· Released at 2000-06-29
· Publisher: Interplay