A long-time lurker who finally joined the community early in May, DukeofDellot introduced himself with "This is me", a highly personal autobiography and look back at nearly eight years of gamemaking. Given his extensive pedigree, it would come as no surprise that he would eventually draw on that experience to make something bold and ambitious. The surprising part was that he did so just a week or two later. Expanding on the mythology of 2003's "Nordomin: Call of the Elements" and the character customization of 2004's "Quest of Creole", "Nordomin: Quest of Creole" is perhaps the closest an OHR game has come to the level of customization available in a Bioware RPG.
As the game begins, you're given a brief history of the world's goddesses and then asked which one you're aligned to. At this point you'll also choose your character's gender and these two choices decide your appearance and strengths. If you still don't feel in control, your character can have up to 3 possible responses to most lines of dialogue, though the shortness of the demo prevents these features from being as exciting as they could be.
Like many rpgs, our hero begins their adventure in bed. It won't take long for trouble to find them however, and when it does you'll discover another interesting DukeofDellot decision. The party is restored to full health before each battle, but to gain MP you'll have to land hits. This adds an exciting feeling of "If I can just stay alive two more turns", though in all the excitement it's sometimes hard to remember if you've fired five shots or six. Gaining MP in this way is crucial if you want to succeed and I wish this was explained in the game rather than the readme. If you think being healed between every battle means things will be easy, think again. DukeofDellot utilizes this to make every battle a life and death struggle.
If you get into trouble outside of a boss battle you can run away, however this cheats you of crafting ingriedients, another ambitious feature that the designer has managed to squeeze in. This abundance of features is perhaps "Nordomin: Quest of Creole"s strongest and weakest point. By the time you adapt to the battles and start to explore everything the game has to offer you, it's over. I can't help but feel that if a few of these options were left out maybe DukeofDellot would've had time to add more than one boss battle and tell more of his story. Instead we have a strong foundation for what promises to be a sturdy house, if it ever gets built.
2011 Score (Per May 19th): 74/100
Part of Gomey's 2011 Year In Review