|“Dungeons and Dragons: Eye of the Beholder” is a GBA game that uses third edition Dungeons and Dragons rules. It takes place in the Forgotten Realms setting (used also in games like Neverwinter Nights, Baldur’s Gate, and Icewind Dale). The story of the game, explained in the intro (which has, for some reason, three different voluptuous-looking women in it). In the city of Waterdeep, there has been a rash of crimes, from kidnappings to thefts to murders. One of the lords of Waterdeep, Pierson the Paladinson, asks a group of adventurers to investigate the murders. The group is the group that the player makes. The only hint the Paladinson has to offer is one word whispered around: “Xanatar”.|
The system of creating characters is pretty basic. You get to choose from seven races (human, gnome, elf, half-elf, half-orc, dwarf, and halfling), four classes (fighter, cleric, rogue, and wizard), gender (of course) and alignment, or your feelings on Law, Chaos, Good, and Evil (there’s Lawful Good, Lawful Neutral, Neutral Good, Neutral, Chaotic Good, and Chaotic Neutral). The ability scores could have been handled better, as you can roll an unlimited amount of times, but unlike other games you can’t, say, take two points from your strength to put in your dexterity. This means to get a score you like, you have to roll quite a bit. You can choose Skills and Feats, just as in Third Edition D+D. You can also choose a miniature for your character, which represents him or her in combat. They look kind of cool, but not really good graphics-wise. They definitely look pixilated.
Once you create your party, you go into the dungeon. Most of the game seems to be walking around in dungeons, occasionally battling monsters in special combat sequences. The dungeons themselves are kind of boring. There are occasional puzzles to spice things up, but mostly you’re walking around a poorly graphiced dungeon, walking into creatures and going into inane little battles with them. It’s kind of like a cross between Baldur’s Gate and the Dungeons and Dragons arcade games, except with worse graphics and sounds.
As I said, the graphics are pretty bad. They’re rather primitive, without even the charm of 8-bit games like the original Legend of Zelda or Final Fantasy 1. The cinematic scenes are pretty good, but the in-game graphics stink.
The sound is somehow even worse. The music is tinny, and the sound effects are pretty annoying.
This is not a game I would especially recommend. If your RPG experience centers on dungeons, then it’s a fine game. It’s also kind of neat how they tried to use real D+D3E rules, but ultimately bad game design drags it down. 4/10.
Buy D+D: Eye of the Beholder on Amazon.