Pages: 1 2
It’s understandable that Bungie would want to leave the Halo business. Once upon a time, they developed a host of different games. Around the new millennium, a bright-eyed stranger with deep pockets arrived and offered a deal they couldn’t refuse. By June of 2000, Bungie moved into the Microsoft harem, leaving behind all their children except their latest and most promising one, little baby Halo. Among those left behind were the Myth twins, two real-time tactics games known as The Fallen Lords and Soulblighter. Oppressively dark and punishingly difficult, Myth was an ancient burial ground of narrative. The bleached bones of fallen empires and the rusted armor of deadly warriors lay half-buried, whispering warnings to the players that they’ve never played something like this before. Nor have they ever since.
To understand Myth, you need to know its roots. Without question, Myth is heavily inspired by the writings of sci-fi/fantasy author Glenn Cook, particularly his Black Company series. Cook was described by fellow fantasy author Steven Erikson as being “Vietnam war fiction on peyote,” which is the most apt description you’ll find anywhere. All the glory and honor of war has been carefully drained away and stored in neatly labeled jars. Soldiers fight for self-preservation, not for any idealism. There is no good versus evil, only lesser evil versus greater. And there’s always a greater evil; it just hasn’t been awakened yet. Cook even invokes the Air Mobility Doctrine in the form of flying carpets inserting commandos behind enemy lines.
Myth‘s titular Fallen Lords are the seven sorcerer-generals who wage war across the land. They have names such as “The Deceiver,” “The Watcher” and “Shiver,” similar to “The Ten Who Were Taken” in Cook’s novels. Their leader, known as “The Leveler,” was once a mighty hero who saved the world, although now human civilization crumbles with only a handful of cities still standing.
After an awesome animated intro and a brief narration setting the scene, Myth begins with a page from a common foot soldier’s journal, talking about his orders to guard the small village of Crow’s Bridge. That’s it. From there, you slowly pick up on the big names and perhaps hear about the major forces, but you almost never see them. From your tiny perspective, Myth’s lore looks like great mountains in the distant mist. It’s difficult to overstate just how much these mission briefings and cutscenes contribute to Myth‘s foreboding atmosphere. Fans have studiously documented and archived every scrap of these briefings. Listen to these short clips and feel the dirt and blood soak into your skin.
Pages: 1 2