Video Game: The Temple of Elemental Evil
A video game adaptation of the Temple Of Elemental Evil
adventure module for Dungeons & Dragons
. The game was developed by Troika Games
and released in 2003.
Rather than being based on the post-Gygax version of events, where the then-named Citadel of Eight didn't take part in the Battle of Emridy Meadows, Troika went with the description from the original module and included the future Circle of Eight in the Battle, going as far as having the Circle being the reason that the Battle was won.
Although buggy upon release (even by Troika's usual standards), the game received some praise, mainly for its relatively faithful adaption of the Dungeons & Dragons
3.5e combat rules, and has since developed a strong cult following
, with fanmade patches fixing the most problematic bugs.
Tropes exclusive to Troika's adaptation include:
- Adaptational Badass: Zuggtmoy's original appearance was that of a comical puffball mushroom. She's now much more fearsome and intimidating, appearing as a blue-skinned demonic female with long sharp claws and whose lower body consists of strands of fungoid matter. WotC was apparently so impressed with the new appearance that it was made her canon true form, with the original appearance being a mere aspect.
- A Load of Bull: There's only one minotaur in the game, which is found guarding a chest.
- Arbitrary Headcount Limit: You can only have up to 5 PCs and only have a maximum of 3 NPCs with you at any one time. The Circle of Eight mod allows you to replace the NPC slots with PC slots, allowing a party of up to eight PCs, but you cannot go beyond this limit.
- Artifact of Doom: Apart from being able to cast several spells, the Orb of Golden Death is wanted by, both, Iuz and Zuggtmoy, who are able to coerce whomever holds the skull.
- Bi the Way: Depending on where you first speak to him, Bertram will either be interested in a male or female player character.
- The Blacksmith: There's a blacksmith in Hommlet who works during the day, and there's Otis in Nulb who is actually investigating a temple. He's also a recruitable NPC. Both of them sell masterwork items.
- Card Sharp: Recruitable thief Furnok, is initially seen at an inn where he challenges people to either dice or cards. The bartender suspects that he's actually cheating, but a party member with a high spot skill is required to catch him in the act.
- Dialogue Tree: Most conversations have several options for dialogue including special options for characters with high enough levels in skills such as bluff, intimidate and diplomacy.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: You can "kill" Iuz, which affects the ending.
- Fan Sequel: Just one of Circle of Eight's many ambitious projects is to make hacks for other modules. Although the only one made so far is an adaptation of the Keep On The Borderlands module.
- Fortune Teller: Mona is a gypsy fortune teller in Nulb who tasks the players to find her stolen orb.
- Game Mod: A dedicated group of modders, appropriately calling themselves the Circle of Eight, have made a fan-made unofficial patch that fixes a large number of bugs and re-added a number of cut content to the game.
- Gay Option: You have the option of developing a relationship with Bertram.
- Gentleman Thief: Furnok is well spoken, good mannered and sharply dressed.
- Hopeless Boss Fight: While not impossible, Iuz is extremely difficult for most parties to even think about beating.
- Joke Character: Ted, Ed and Ed, neither of whom can be recruited without recruiting the other two. Ted speaks like a hillbilly, while the Eds don't speak at all. They're only available if, when asked what you seek in your future by a fortune teller after completing a quest, you respond with the "humor in all things" option.
- Modular Epilogue: What ending "slides" you see depend on your actions, such as rescuing Prince Thrommel.
- Multiple Endings: Several actions that you take throughout the game can affect the ending.
- Obvious Beta: As per Troika's usual standards there are many bugs in the game. Subsequent patches have fixed the worst problems, but certain bugs are still present which is why the people behind the Circle of Eight mods and patches have given a list of general guidelines to follow in order to prevent any serious bugs.
- Roboteching: The Magic Missile spell is always animated at different curved angles before it reaches it's target.
- Romance Sidequest: There are a few romance options in the game, including several NPCs who won't join your party. Of the joinable members there are 3 who can be romanced and your character may even get married to them. There are more options for male characters.
- Save Scumming: Doing the same thing keeps the results the same, but doing it slightly differently (say, attacking from the left instead of the right) will get a new result.
- Summon Magic: Apart from the standard D&D spells, which allow you to summon a monster, undead, or animal according to the spell, several monsters also use summons, such as demons. Zuggtmoy can summon several species of fungus based monsters. The Orb of Golden Death allows you to summon 4 kinds of elementals and 4 kinds of demons depending on which gems are stored in the skull.
- Temple of Doom: The titular temple, which is filled with all sorts of monsters, cultists, and an evil goddess.
- Time Limit: If you do decide to fight Iuz, you have only a short time to do so before he is teleported away.
- Title Confusion: The subtitle "A classic Greyhawk Adventure" appears on the cover/disc, the first patch's installer and copyright screen, but is absent on the installer, title screen and the 2nd patch's installer. Interestingly the "the" at the start of the title (see up) is always present.
- Token Evil Teammate: Several can be recruited in-game, including a hill giant, a troll and an alu-fiend. Some of them will turn on your party if the opportunity presents itself. Having monsters in your party will mean that some NPCs, such as shopkeepers, will refuse to talk to your party.
- Wedlock Block: Melanie's father will only let her get married to the player character if her older sister marries first, and if he thinks the character is sincere enough.
- Wretched Hive: Nulb is full of pirates and other shady types, including people linked with the titular temple.