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DOLMEN uses the UNREAL ENGINE like so many of the games available for the Steam Media and PC nowadays.

This Preview is of the ALPHA version so may change before it is launched officially. To begin with press [Start] and then sit back and relax as you watch the very long introductary movie

   

Controls are by the usual standards: WASD LMB  RMB  E  [Shift]  [Space]  [Left Shift]  R  F  [Right Alt]  the 'E' being the usual Action key, 'R' for Consumption and 'F' for Healing yourself via your own Energy (I like this idea as it allows you to heal and continue but it weakens you at the same time).

NEEDS ATTENTION:

1). As this is ALPHA I am only mentioning this because it is bound to be Previewed and altered by the time the game goes live but there are a few instances where your character is literally 'standing on air' having walked off a cliff edge. 
2). In melee combat turning round to face an attack from the rear or flank isn't as easy as it should be. Try to target your opponent and then you should auto-turn to face it when you strike.
3). Not Too Keen on Crafting (and Upgrading). Neither are not totally instinctive even for an experienced games player. For example on the Crafting screen you can see what you need by number and pictures but doesn't explain what the required resources are. I understand not detailing where they might be found - you may need to somehow scan areas to discover where resources can be found - but I don't understand not naming them. Surely if you have a recipe for anything that recipe doesn't just say 2 of these 4 of those a pinch of this etc ?
4). I am not so keen about combat, either by range or close-in. It is 'clunky' 'awkward' not fluent at all and therefore neither enjoyable, exciting or fun.

  

I really like the transport system whereby you locate teleporters when you are out exploring which when used will take you back and forth between it and your Jump/Base Ship. This keeps the game flowing as unlike so many games where teleportation travel is used there is very little 'dead air' it is almost simultaneous travel.

Visually it is very good, albeit strikingly similar to many other science-fiction games set in and around spacecraft and semi-destructed planets. Sci-fi players will be happy with how it looks as everything one who has never been on a spaceship orbiting a planet would expect it to. Role-players, action game players, tabletop players will all have 'seen' the interiors displayed here before sometime, either in another game, from sci-fi 3D floor plans or in their imagination from descriptions given by their GMs.

     

First creatures met are Giant Grasshoppers and aren't particularly impressive in appearance but are quite tough when they group up and come at you from all sides - try backing up if you can't turn tound, it sometimes allow you to back through the rear attacker and then they are in front of you and can be hit. I have also met a warrior type who hit me once and killed me. I resurrected and with full health and strength defeated it. The Blue sphere that told me there was something to pick up said it had given me a Ranged Weapon and that I should go back to the Ship and equip it as well as Level Up. I went back to the ship, couldn't find any ranged weapon in my Inventory or Vault. I did see it in a box marked ranged weapons but could not find out how to equip it - I may be daft and not very good with Dolmen but I am playing on a PC without a controller, just keys and mouse which make it a lot harder to control and play than an actual hand-held controller would be.

Everything about the game, apart from the visuals, is cumbersome and unrefined. But and I repeat this, it is only at ALPHA level. In my opinion it does need a fair amount of tidying up but then that's what is expected of an ALPHA version. It is quite close to ALPHA plus or perhaps Pre-BETA so I will be delighted to see how it progresses.

  

      

  

  

  

  

                                                             

© Chris Baylis 2011-2015