Iron & Blood: Warriors of Ravenloft

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Iron & Blood: Warriors of Ravenloft
Iron & Blood - Warriors of Ravenloft Coverart.png
European PlayStation cover art
Developer(s) Take-Two Interactive
Publisher(s) Acclaim Entertainment
Take-Two Publishing
Platform(s) MS-DOS, PlayStation
Release PlayStation
  • NA: October 31, 1996
  • PAL: November 1996
DOS
  • NA: January 7, 1997
Genre(s) Fighting
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Iron & Blood: Warriors of Ravenloft is a 3D fighting game released for PC and PlayStation.

Plot[edit]

Iron & Blood is based on Ravenloft, a campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy roleplaying game.

Gameplay[edit]

Players choose a hero or villain to control. The heroes are Luthor the paladin, Darius the gladiator, Erland the elven archer, Torgo the dwarf, Ignatius Max the halfling thief, Xenobia the amazon, Red Cloud the Abber Nomad shaman, and Shinesta the elf princess. The villains are Ardrus the skeleton warrior, Balok the black knight, Kaurik the warlord, Stellerex the wizard, Sasha the werewolf, Nym Pymplee the mad goblin, Urgo the margoyle, and Balthazaar the Headsman.[1]

Development[edit]

Iron & Blood: Warriors of Ravenloft was developed by Take-Two Interactive. Creator/producer Rick Hall stated, "There are a lot of big guns out there and we noticed everyone's games are martial arts-based, but there weren't any fantasy-based fighting games. I'm a big D&D fan, so I thought that would be fun."[2]

The game was originally unveiled as an exclusive for the 3DO M2 console under the title Ironblood.[3] However, Take 2 Interactive later announced that the game would first be released for the PlayStation, with versions for the M2 and PC to come later.[4] At this time they revealed that they had always intended the game to be a multiplatform release for Sega Saturn, PlayStation, and M2, and even started work on the PlayStation version first. They explained that they had only announced it as an M2 exclusive because at that time 3DO was the only one of the three console companies to have approved the game.[2] However, they also mentioned that while the M2 version ran at a resolution of 640 x 480, hardware limitations meant they could only get the PlayStation version to run at a resolution of 512 x 240.[4] The Sega Saturn version was officially announced,[5] but eventually cancelled.[6]

The M2 version was cancelled by the end of 1996.[7] Representatives from Take-Two and 3DO said that the two companies had mutually agreed to cancel the game.[8]

The animations for the fighters were created by motion capture filming several members of the Society for Creative Anachronism.[9]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
Publication Score
EGM 5.75/10 (PS)[10]
GameSpot 2.5/10 (PS)[11]
Next Generation 2/5 stars (PS)[12]

According to Take 2, Iron & Blood sold above 150,000 units by the end of October 1996 and accounted for 32.0% of its revenue during that fiscal year,[13] the total of which was $12.5 million. The company's total income in that period was $349,074.[14]

Iron & Blood received mostly negative reviews. Covering the PlayStation version, Electronic Gaming Monthly's four-man review team praised the large lineup of fighters and said the ability to earn new magic abilities in fights is innovative, but heavily criticized the fighting engine, citing jerky controls and a lack of technique.[10] Jeff Gerstmann of GameSpot outright panned the game, complaining of jerky controls, poor animation, and camera angles which make it impossible for the player to consistently know which button to push to go in the desired direction.[11] A Next Generation critic instead praised the animation and graphical detail, but argued that the fighting lacks innovation. He summarized, "The combos are limited, the special moves are cliched, and without any noticeable enhancements brought to the actual fighting, the action feels passé. The digitized speech and special effects are average, and the techno soundtrack seems laughably anachronistic against the medieval visuals."[12] Scary Larry remarked in GamePro that "There's no strategy (we beat the game using a single button) ... Fighters get hit, then end up with their backs to an opponent; you hit a walled ring that can hurt you more than the enemy; and the moves are basic."[15]

According to GameSpy, "A bargain-bin game from the day it was released, Iron & Blood is best forgotten."[16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Iron And Blood: Warriors Of Ravenloft Cheats, Codes, Cheat Codes for PlayStation (PSX)". www.cheatcc.com. Retrieved 26 March 2018. 
  2. ^ a b "NG Alphas: Iron & Blood". Next Generation. No. 22. Imagine Media. October 1996. p. 121. 
  3. ^ Next Generation staff (October 1995). "ng alphas: Ironblood". Next Generation. Imagine Media. pp. 86–7. ISSN 1078-9693. 
  4. ^ a b "Behind the Screens". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 85. Ziff Davis. August 1996. p. 77. 
  5. ^ "Protos: Iron & Blood". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 85. Ziff Davis. August 1996. p. 82. 
  6. ^ "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Iron & Blood -- Warriors of Ravenloft (Canceled)". allgame. Retrieved 2009-04-24. 
  7. ^ Svensson, Christian (January 1997). "Ever Changing Ways". Next Generation. No. 25. Imagine Media. p. 26. 
  8. ^ "M2 Jitters?". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 90. Ziff Davis. January 1997. p. 21. 
  9. ^ "Behind the Screens". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 85. Ziff Davis. August 1996. p. 76. 
  10. ^ a b "Review Crew: Iron & Blood". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 88. Ziff Davis. November 1996. p. 84. 
  11. ^ a b Gerstmann, Jeff (December 1, 1996). "Iron & Blood Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 22 November 2017. 
  12. ^ a b "Iron & Blood: Warriors of Ravenloft". Next Generation. No. 24. Imagine Media. December 1996. p. 256. 
  13. ^ Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. Form 10-KSB (Report). Delaware. October 31, 1997. p. 5. Archived from the original on June 18, 2018. 
  14. ^ Jebens, Harley (February 9, 1998). "Take 2's Mother Lode". GameSpot. Archived from the original on March 5, 2000. 
  15. ^ "Quick Hits: Iron and Blood". GamePro. No. 101. IDG. February 1997. p. 74. 
  16. ^ Rausch, Allen (2004-08-18). "A History of D&D Video Games - Part IV". Game Spy. Retrieved November 17, 2012. 

External links[edit]