Ishar 2: Messengers of Doom

When Ishar I came out it was said to be a “new benchmark for RPG”. There were three games in this series and at the time that statement was quite true. They had 3D graphics and a large game world, larger than the other games I’d played at the time. The characters all had personalities and their own goals. The puzzles had alternate solutions, and there was even a time travel element to the third game.

Ishar I was released in 1992 by Silmarils. I found the series with Ishar II when it was released in 1993. It was a classic dungeon crawler but with the added features mentioned above, it felt new and exciting. For it’s time the graphics were so much better than many of the bitty blocky games that were its contemporaries. The sound samples, though a bit rough today, at the time were richer than a lot of the scratchy beeps and boops of a lot of games. They had contextual background sounds. For example, there was a constant chatter in the inn that sounded like a busy inn full of people talking and drinking.

There was a wide variety of bad guys to grind and lots of locations to wander through. You could hear the water sloshing about your legs as you walked through the swamp, a nice touch. While the game play was still turn based, the game was innovative enough to feel like the next step in gaming.

Let me know

If you’d like to play it yourself it can still be found here. Let me know what you thought of it. I’d love to hear your stories. As always this is a retro game so be kind. Don’t expect a polished AAA game of the 2010’s. This is a piece of game history not a new blockbuster.


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