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Video Game / Barony

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"Good luck, mortal. Muahahahahahaha!!"

Barony is a rogue-like first-person RPG inspired by Ultima Underworld, System Shock, and TES II: Daggerfall. The goal of the game is to descend to the bottom of a dark dungeon known as the Devil's Bastion and destroy an undead lich named Baron Herx, who terrorized the peaceful town of Hamlet in life and is now harboring a curse against the land from beyond the grave. To aid you in your quest are friendly humans who have been eeking out a rough life within the dungeon for generations, as well as any friends you can bring with you in real life: Barony is the first of its kind as a first-person roguelike in that it fully supports cooperative multiplayer for up to four players.


This game provides examples of:

  • Adventure-Friendly World: You play as an adventurer seeking fortune, glory, or both delving into a dungeon infested by, among other things, giant spiders, skeletons, and if you're unlucky (or a secret hunter) Baron Herx's pet Minotaur!
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: Played with. Death is permanent per character, but there's nothing stopping you from re-creating the exact same character, class, gender, name, & race being the only things you can customize before the game begins.
  • Anti-Hoarding: You have limited inventory space though every item in the game, from huge plate armor to a tiny shard of glass, only takes up one space in said inventory.
  • Bag of Spilling: Invoked. Not forced, but dying in multiplayer will spill your entire inventory on the ground, forcing you to respawn naked if your pals can't collect your belongings, or potentially encumber themselves to help you out while potentially leaving behind other resources. In single player you simply die and explode into your carried treasure. It's as defeating as it sounds.
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  • Big Bad: Baron Herx, the sorcerer turned Lich at the bottom of the Devil's Cradle.
  • Bigger Bad: Baphomet, a greater demon who gave Herx his magical upgrade in the first place, is the true final boss waiting past the demon city if you can find the portal and survive the journey. You fight both Baphomet AND Baron Herx should you choose this route.
  • Bottomless Pits: Fortunately it isn't possible to just walk into them. However, losing the effect of your levitation potion with your hitbox anywhere above the pit tile results in immediate death, and items do fall down to become irretrievable.
  • Cast Magic Missile: One of the non-elemental damage spells is called Magic Missile and is the more potent version of Forcebolt. Classic.
  • Character Customization: As mentioned above, you can choose between one of ten different classes (complete with developer difficulty rating), several (cosmetic) races, male or female gender which does affect stats, and type in a custom name.
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  • The Computer Shall Taunt You: Baron Herx occasionally comments on your progress or threatens you as you descend further into his lair.
  • Critical Existence Failure: With enough armor class or health pool with the warrior type classes, a trap boulder as tall as you are and twice as wide can drop on your head and not kill you. Cue that rat who squeaks just in time to make you swing your mouse violently as you crumple in a sad, defeated burst of treasure.
  • Die, Chair! Die!: Causes the chair, table, or door to burst into component "particles" but doesn't drop any loot, sadly. You can't even use the wood for torches.
  • Easy Exp: Identifying items using the appraise command nets you a sum of experience depending on the item you identified. Glass shards and gems look identical in the inventory, but gems will net you a respectable boost of exp when identified. This also improves your Appraise skill by 10% of the exp awarded and might make subsequent appraisals faster and more likely to succeed.
  • Empty Room Psych: Especially potent when you're new to the game. The low light levels in the mines don't help matters.
  • Endless Game: Averted. There is an ending, and a true ending, but both are dialogue only and returning to the dungeon to try out different character classes and explore other areas contributes to this trope and provides more content the deeper into the game you dive.
  • Enemy-Detecting Radar: The ring or amulet of warning will place red dots on your minimap for every enemy on the current floor. Friendly npcs only show up as purple dots if they're in your or a friend's party and shopkeepers are purple dots as well. Other players are always shown as blue dots.
  • Equipment Upgrade: You can find scrolls of weapon and armor enchanting in the dungeon by identifying random scrolls each run. Depending on their quality they will upgrade from one to five of the six pieces of armor you can equip (between boots, gloves/wrists, chest, helmet, shield, and cape) while more powerful weapon enchant scrolls have the potential to add either one, two, or three pluses to your currently equipped weapon.
  • Everything Breaks: Except for the Legendary weapons found in the dungeon, every item either has durability limits or is single use. Magic rings and amulets can even break if they have a combat-triggered function like reflecting magic or preventing poison.
  • Fake Difficulty: Since the game relies on a random number generator you could get a dungeon loot table with no food for three floors or more. Starvation shortly follows, if it didn't already claim you, as fighting reduces hunger fairly quickly especially if your Constitution is low. Sure, you can disable needing food at all, but where's the fun in that?
  • Game Gourmet: Meat, bread, fish, apples, pies, tins of... something, and beer all refill your hidden hunger value.
  • Game Lobby: Now with Steam integration!
  • Hit Points: It wouldn't be a rogue-like rpg without them. More for warriors, less for mages, and just about meaningless against the Minotaur!
  • Home Field Advantage: And not for the player. There's a reason it's called the Devil's Cradle! Baron Herx made a pact with Baphomet to gain vast magical power. Should you find and challenge Baphomet, Baron Herx will join in the fight with his master as well.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: Steel weapons are the best ordinary equipment you can get in the game. If you happen to find enchanting scrolls, they can become fairly powerful as well, but getting them to the level of the legendary weapons is a task and a half given the RNG nature of the game.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: The legendary weapons. Even without any enchantment scrolls they begin at +8 naturally when you appraise them, are indestructible, can have special effects like Dyrmwyn burning undead that survive its blows, and they have unique, awesome models. Totally worth it.
  • In-Game Novel: There are an assortment of lore books in addition to the spell tomes one can find in the dungeon. These range from fiction works inside the game world, such as "The Lusty Goblin Maid," to Baron Herx's own journals, explaining more of why he's such a Big Bad Sorcerer and how he got there.
  • Item Drop Mechanic: Enemies will wear the same equipment you are able to, though it's commonly cursed, and will drop all their equipped items upon death, just like the player. Non-humanoid enemies like spiders and rats instead drop poison and food, respectively, though at random qualities or freshness. The equipment can be identified and there are scrolls of uncurse to make the items much more useful if say, that skeleton was wielding a cursed steel shield and yours is iron.
  • Level Editor: Barony does include a level editing utility.
  • Level Up Fill Up: Your health and mana will be set to their new maximum value upon leveling up. Your current hunger will also deplete more slowly if you happen to gain Constitution.
  • A Load of Bull: Baron Herx has a pet minotaur. As early as the first floor, and on random chance, he will set it upon you. You'll get a warning taunt from Herx mentioning either "his pet" or "the beast" and you have between ninety seconds and three minutes to find the exit, gather your party, and GET GONE!! You can't hide from the beast. It will just smash down whatever wall and even walk over bottomless pits to get to you. Taken Up to Eleven in the Minotaur Maze, a secret area that can be found in the desert section of the Devil's Cradle. Here, the Minotaur is released once you or any of your allies are a certain distance into the maze, and its find the exit or die. You could also locate two hidden switches in two very far from one another dead-ends to open the central cage containing Gungnir, the legendary spear of Odin.
  • Locked Door: Played with. There are locked doors that will bar progress occasionally, though most chambers will have more than one entrance. All locks can also be picked by anyone with a lockpick with or without high dexterity though having higher dex will increase success. Or you can just Johnny your way on through.
  • Luck Stat: There is a Luck stat that gives a small increase to the success of basically every action. Not losing magic charge levels when using staves, opening door and chest locks, not puking when eating less than fresh food, and identifying an item without a curse to name a few.
  • The Many Deaths of You: Not as many varied results as one of those older point and click games, but still plenty of beasties to do nasty things to you. Not to mention the game isn't easy by any means. You will die.
  • Musical Spoiler: Invoked. Coming close enough to an enemy to be detected will trigger a combat theme to replace the level theme. This can alert players of imminent attack or confuse them completely because enemies can see you through walls and there are areas that generate behind solid walls that must be mined to access, pouring on the paranoia fuel.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The dungeon itself is called The Devil's Cradle because it houses a portal to the circle of Hell that Baphomet oversees. Does a Minotaur even need a name?
  • Only Smart People May Pass: The Maze of Sokoban. While the rock-pushing puzzle isn't difficult if you pay attention and take your time, or smash all the boulders and toss all the resulting pebbles into the holes instead, it is easy to get one of the last few boulders lodged into a corner or against another one in an unwinnable situation. Clearing the maze of all the grey rocks nets you several gold coin bags.
  • Player Punch: Those random humans doing their best in the dungeon can really save your neck in single player. But they're just as vulnerable as you are... All those traps and all those monsters are bound to rob you of a few of your plucky friends now and then.
  • Player Versus Environment: How the game is meant to be played. But...
  • Player Versus Player: Friendly fire is enabled by default if it is your first time hosting a game, and there's even an achievement for killing a fellow player.
  • Pressure Plate: Side-stepped. This is how spike traps activate, though the trap itself is the plate and only mechanically, not visually.
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: Inverted, as mentioned above. Female player characters have one more intellect and one less strength than their male counterparts of each class.
  • Random Event: The Minotaur mentioned above. Aww, don't disable him, he wants to play too.
  • Regenerating Health: Your hitpoints will slowly recover while exploring or standing still. This will deplete hunger, affected by Constitution, and generally takes a long time even with a small health pool.
  • Regenerating Mana: Same deal, only this does not require hunger and increases in efficiency the higher your Intellect stat is.
  • RPGs Equal Combat: Played with. The best equipment can be found both by defeating unique enemies carrying it and in random chests. Sometimes you'll find these "Legendary" weapons twice in one run, potentially eliminating combat challenge for melee characters or even turning a mage or rogue into a Battle Mage or Lightning Bruiser because of these weapons' power, especially in the early floors.
  • Run, Don't Walk: Your character will always move at their maximum speed, which is modified by Dexterity, when above a certain percentage of their carry weight. Once they begin carrying items and equipping more armor, their speed decreases at different rates some noticeable some not so much. Constitution increases their carry weight limit and raises the value of the weight that will begin reducing speed, so leveling up increases your net speed overall.
  • Scoring Points: The value of your equipment, both worn and carried, will be added up when you either win or die. This, in addition to your skill experience gained is your score, recorded in the High Scores menu along with the character's name, portrait, and what killed them.
  • Silliness Switch: Zig-Zagged. The Jester class is labelled as "Insane" difficulty by the developers, but RNG loot generation could make their run just as easy as a Soldier's, whom the devs label as, you guessed it, Easy.
  • Soldiers Prefer Swords: The Soldier class starts out with an iron sword and an iron spear. The spear is equipped by default though. The Rogue class begins with a bronze sword as well, but has their bow equipped by default.
  • Swiss Army Hero: Selecting the Mage class doesn't prevent you from using swords or shields just like selecting the Soldier class doesn't prevent you from reading that spell book of Healing. Each class merely suggests your playstyle and gives advantages to relevant skills.
  • Time Trial: There is an achievement for completing the game (defeating Baron Herx) in under twenty minutes.
  • Violation of Common Sense: Eating rotton food, taking off your equipment of levitation whilst over a bottomless pit, sticking around to watch the Zap Brigade fight the Minotaur.
  • Warp Zone: Finding the secret portals to Sokoban, the Haunted Castle, the Underworld, the Jungle Temple, the Minotaur Maze, and the Mystic Library count as this. Complete with "wooaahhoob" sound effects from the portals.

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