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Screenshot Showcase
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition
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Review Showcase
Hubris as well as greed can become immovable obstacles in humanity's path towards progress and enlightment. Undoubtedly, The Age of Decadence is an allegory of the Western Roman Empire's downfall and the subsequent plunge into the Dark Ages. Mythological concepts are present, but kept to a minimum.

A seven year old game at this point, the Steam debut for developer and self-publisher Iron Tower Studio still holds a special place in my heart. It was one of the first games I purchased on this platform. I was late to the party, much like the protagonist is also trying to bask in the glory of events long past. A recurring theme not without its merits.

It's an entirely original storyline, I'll tell you this much. Sprinkled with elements of Sci-Fi when you least expect it, The Age of Decadence (TAD) is a tale you can witness from multiple perspectives as you join several mutually exclusive factions each with its own affinities and required skill sets.

Multiple playthroughs will be needed to get to the bottom of the underlying mystery, scratching the surface of those ruins will only leave you with partial answers. An amusing quote unless you interpret it quite literally:
"If violence is not the answer, you're asking the wrong questions."

In fact, after this review I plan a new run with a character background abstaining from violence as much as possible. I will subvert that old school meme fitting far too many video games. The game doesn't have to be combat-centric if you make the right choices.

Having a wit as sharp as any blade can be equally rewarding if you prefer dialogue rich interactions and squeezing as much lore as you can from all the locations you shall visit. Ruinous Forces were at play in TAD's world. Everywhere you look, you shall find squalor and disrepair.

Petty warlords impersonating concepts such as nobility and valor without truly understanding them. Think Caesar's Legion from Fallout New Vegas. Would-be Roman cosplayers, semi-literate and constantly looking to gain more political power within a slowly crumbling environment they can't hope to mend or advance in any meaningful way.


Magic and science could not save this society from the brink of global collapse. Speaking of magical elements, you won't be wielding such powers though hints over past events are ever-present. An RPG uprooting supernatural occurences from the grasp of player characters is not something you see very often.

You will have to adapt and overcome hurdles with conventional weaponry or your mind and a selected choice of words. Death can arrive swiftly and unexpectedly in The Age of Decadence. You have the benefit of learning from those mistakes and avoid repeating them.

Torque 3D graphics engine is powering some of the older Steam releases before the advent of Unity. You might recognize Torgue being used in Dead State as well. Another fine title I suggest you try out, if you're also into zombies.

Heavily customized to accommodate a world of this scale, The Age of Decadence shows its wrinkles yet I find it more than adequate for players looking for a good story and challenging gameplay.

True cRPG fans can surely overlook eye candy in favor of those elements. On the upside, you can run this title on the most shoddy laptop you can find without experiencing any technical issues. I certainly didn't.

Not being able to disable all HUD elements was the only thing mildly irritating for me. There are plenty of screenshot opportunities regardless of the User Interface getting in the way. I haven't lost hope for a solution in that case either.

No voice acting whatsoever and while I would normally encourage you to enjoy reading (you must be doing that already since you're here after all), I am fully aware that this can be a deal breaker for some players looking to fully immerse themselves into a storyline of this complexity.

It didn't bother me one bit. I'm used to reading a lot, not just writing. Iron Tower Studio is following this pattern of silent narratives in all their current projects, so I presume there are more than just budgetary constraints in this equation.

If you can move past this deficiency, I am certain you can enjoy everything else the game has to offer. The soundtrack is pleasant and facilitates the reading of all that captivating dialogue. If that bores you, just focus on the combat. Dead men tell no tales, right?


A veritable Tactical RPG as its own dev team has described it, The Age of Decadence dispenses with character classes in favor of backgrounds that won't directly impact your choices in regards to joining factions. Flexibility which bleeds out into the in-game morality system yet it not as quantifiable as a Bioware project for example.

You will be able to join multiple organizations and power structures, betraying some along the way or simply working only towards you own personal gain right from the start. You cannot trust anyone in TAD so why should they trust you? I initially played very stealthly, it was quite entertaining the way I could emulate my Skyrim approach of ranged weaponry mixed with poison.

Lethal crossbow bolts which helped me demolish my opponents, including the optional arena section. A challenge by itself when most foes prefer the close & personal approach of melee combat. Nothing a poisoned dagger won't handle once you find the "right recipes". So you shouldn't beeline for the strong swordsman type if you want to spice things up.

Versatility and freedom of approach to most quests, truly speak volumes in regards to replayability. You might be tempted to kill certain characters during questlines, yet allowing them to live can yield interesting results in both shaping up new events and extra side missions for you to take, if you are simply patient and prudent. Short term gain or an uncertain profit in the near future?

Only one way to find out. Unless you follow a walkthrough, which I'm almost recommending for new players finding the gameplay more than a bit punishing. It's usually the case of a build that's too spread out. Jack-of-all-Trades is a Master of None, do keep that in mind and try to focus on a limited selection of skills.

You will notice your survivability rating rising sharply. Take your time to explore the three cities and the auxiliary locations as much as you'd like. Hidden items and interactions are abundant and no one's rushing you. No time limits, just wrong choices that will make you save scum ad nauseam.


A fine example of a story carried by equally intriguing gameplay, strategic minds will rejoice at the successful marriage of so many familiar themes and topics which still manage to retain notions of originality. If it piques your interest, you will return for more playthroughs at later dates.

The title was bundled numerous times, yet I reckon it deserves picking up even outside a Steam Sale, just for you to properly support an indie developer releasing projects worthy of your spare time. Low magic within a post-apocalyptic fantasy world is truly a sight for sore eyes!

Strong Points
+ Great story.
+ Pleasant graphics.
+ Steam Trading Cards & Achievements.
+ Immense replay value through character choices.

Weak Points
- No voice acting.

This article was submitted for Imperial Reviews. Following my Curator Page, will help me keep publishing new reviews as soon as I can. Thank you for your support!
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UN0W3N Jun 7 @ 1:32pm 
Not soon enough, Ronin.
Game Explorer ❄ Jun 7 @ 1:31pm 
Summer is coming
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UN0W3N Jun 7 @ 10:50am