Al-Qadim: The Genie’s Curse

Guest review by E_net4. I suppose he also wanted a share of the fame and untold riches this blog gives to its writers and about which Crazy couldn’t keep his mouth shut. Now I’ll probably be flooded with guest reviews. But hey, enjoy. Just so you know, I also play all those guest reviewed games just for the experience. Gotta play ’em all!

A side note: I’m just another internet commoner, I assume. I have played many oldies in the past and I looked forward to hearing more from Let’s Play Oldies. I haven’t played this game in the old times, but it was rather enjoyable to give it a try. Anyways, here’s my Live Space: http://net4games.spaces.live.com

Al-Qadim: The Genie’s Curse is an action RPG developed by Cyberlore Studios and published by Strategic Simulations, Inc in 1994. It seems to be based on an Advanced Dungeons and Dragons campaign setting. Anyways, the story is focused on a young corsair in the world of Al-Qadim (think of the thousand and one nights kind of place).

The main menu is quite promising.

The main menu is quite promising.

The young man, who can be named as you wish, returns to Zaratan, his home, and returns to his family after his corsair training. The initial drama is that his family (Al-Hazrad) has a rivalry against the Wassab, as both families are merchants. However, yours have a genie, a powerful being that can be summoned by your father, your mother and your sister. He usually blows winds for sailing, but one day he destroys a ship of the Wassab without the Al-Hazrad’s request.

Meet Muliban, the genie of the Al-Hazrad!

Meet Muliban, the genie of the Al-Hazrad!

Since it’s impossible for a genie to do things without being requested by his masters, it was implied that your family did it. And so they all go to jail except you, who couldn’t have summoned Muliban. Now it’s your job to free your family and save the beloved princess. Perhaps you’re wondering about the princess, but no more spoilers for j00.
Now for what really matters: the game play. You can use your arrow keys to walk around. The Ctrl or Enter keys make you use objects, talk to people and use your sword in a hostile environment. The space bar uses the secondary weapon, for casting attack spells or throwing pebbles with the sling. You keep pressing the attack button to charge your attack up to 3 different combat moves. Only one is unlocked in the beginning, and the next 2 produce stronger and wider attacks, which can hit multiple targets. You can also use your mouse, but I didn’t like using it.

Aaaaargh! Killer wasps!

Aaaaargh! Killer wasps!

There are also 2 exchangeable currencies: gold coins and gems. Gems are worth more than coins, and some merchants won’t accept certain currency for something you might need. You find both gems and coins in chests or on the ground. Some monsters even drop them.

Like, lol…

Like, lol…

Talking to people can be useless, helpful or funny. This guy tried turning into a tiger and say the magic words to turn back to normal. Anyways, there are more interesting cases of comedy, and I’m sure you’ll find them amusing. Most of the time you’ll be doing dialogs with people, most of the times vital to your quest.
In addition, fighting isn’t the only action in the game. There will be many puzzles you have to solve to make your way through. In fact, you also receive experience for doing so.

Although the game hasn’t so much focus on leveling up, the attributes are still there. I finished the game with a level below 10.

Although the game hasn’t so much focus on leveling up, the attributes are still there. I finished the game with a level below 10.

There are a few potions in the game. Some of them heal you, others make you invulnerable to elemental damage for a limited time, etc. In order to cast magic spells you must use special shards. These shards have a limited number of charges before they disappear. I didn’t use them much, but I was playing on Very easy. I would use more of them in a harder difficulty for sure.
What I most disliked in the game were the stealth parts. At a certain point you’ll be sneaking through the palace of a big city, avoiding the guards and silly robots. A simple glance of either one puts you in jail and the game is over. When the game is over, by the way, you must restart or load a saved game, so make sure you save often.

The Game Over screen. :/

The Game Over screen. :/

In my opinion, the music and GFX are nice, the commands are easy and simple, and the storyline is rather interesting. If you want to play a good RPG but don’t want to waste your time, this is a good choice. A good player with a bright mind should beat this game quickly, otherwise one might take longer. I managed to beat it without any walkthroughs, but I wouldn’t doubt someone would need one. Well, now it’s rating time. I give it a 82%. No questioning on the percentage, please… fine, I made it up! D:< But I still give it an eight, which is well deserved. Now go ahead and play. Be careful not to get stuck… literally.

Aw, crap.

Aw, crap.

Reviewed by E_net4. Over and out.

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One Response to “Al-Qadim: The Genie’s Curse”

  1. E_net4 Says:

    O yay me. 8D

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