The Forgotten City – Midas Mayhem

The Forgotten City is an RPG/Adventure made by Modern Storyteller. What is somewhat unique about this title is that it started out as a mod for Skyrim, which you can find on Nexus. I have not played the mod, so I went into the game without any prior knowledge of the story, or setting, besides what I had seen on the promo shots, and read what it was about on the store page. I have to say, impressive work, considering it’s not even on the same game engine – just that alone must have been hell porting wise, but in the end it was all worth it, because it’s a great game that I think deserve its standalone status.

The Forgotten City will be a hard one to review, because 90% of the enjoyment of the game is dependent on that you don’t know too much of the story, or gameplay for that matter – so it hits you by surprise when it does happen. I will try to avoid spoilers as much as I can. The game starts out in modern times at the river of Tiber in Italy. Something is clearly off, and you are quickly rushed off to explore some forgotten tombs, which takes you to this “forgotten city”. And here on out you are transported 2000 years to the past, and trust into a weird but very charming mystery adventure consisting of everything ancient mythology.

Basically, it’s a mystery for you to solve, while being trapped in an unknown world, and since large parts of the mystery involves classic mythology, Greek, roman, etc., your personal knowledge of these things will help you out, and make you feel even more connected to the story beyond the usual story mechanics. I sure as hell liked this, and it made me feel smart at times (for once!).

I suspect the temple on the hill have some importance

At first, you might suspect it’s the usual first person adventure type of game, also called walking simulator, but as it is, by bearing in mind its background as a mod there are “other” gameplay segments involved, like having to dwell the occasional dungeon with eerie horror attached to it.

Most of what you will be doing is talking, but the game allows you to explore this city freely, only constrained by the rules the setting have set up for you, and I’m not talking about gameplay rules here. I highly recommend to go with the flow whatever happens – let your mistakes be mistakes instead of reloading. It has some great consequences to it, that might or might not scare the pants off you! I really enjoyed it, and its rules within the setting made for a really fun and at times spooky experience. Another reason for letting go of the reload button, is that the game have several endings to it, depending on what you do and choose. I can say that I got the best ending myself, but it did involve some questionable stuff I had to do – but for the greater good, right?

Gold zombie or not, a foot to the solar plexus staggers anyone

The visuals are great, even if a bit standard now since games on Unreal 4 are starting to look like each other. But the design is great otherwise, and the world looks believable. The faces of the people you speak to look great and expressive, and it actually impressed me beyond just looking fancy. It gave that Half-Life 2 feeling when you talk to people, which is a nice and rare feeling.

The music felt very fitting for the time period, but I did find it a bit odd how it shifted in tone when nothing really happened, like if someone was about to sneak up on me to plant a dagger in my back – but then for it to never happen. That is just a minor issue, if an issue at all. The voice acting is fabulous, very British (even if not everyone was British), almost theater like with clear pronunciations and perfect tone. Some voices almost had an ASMR effect to them, which made it a pure pleasure to listen to, especially with the writing being excellent. Nobody outstays their welcome with a lot of blabber about nothing, which I have noticed to become a trend in RPGs. Characters talking so much, but saying so little in the end. Brevity is the soul of wit, after all.

Much better than my bathroom tiling

Do I recommend the game? Of course. It’s a great game for everyone lusting for an RPG (except, without stats and levels) or just a good mystery adventure. The only negative would be the short play time, if you were expecting any kind of epic, because it’s not. I think I finished the game in about 10 hours or so, but with multiple endings, and different ways to complete quests, I would guess there is some replayability for those that enjoy that. I found the game on Microsoft Gamepass by pure luck, and I paid 1 euro for a month of subscription, so I can’t say I over-payed in any way for 10 hours of good entertainment. Otherwise, the game currently goes for 25 euros, which might be a bit much, depending on what you want, of course. But as it is, it was a great game, with a minimum of modern political pandering!

Thanks for reading.

/Thomas


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