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Discworld II: Mortality Bytes!

aka: Discworld 2: Mortellement Votre, Discworld II: Missing presumed...!?, Discworld II: Vermutlich vermisst...!?, Mundodisco II: ┬┐Presuntamente Desaparecido?
Moby ID: 1370
Windows Specs

Description official descriptions

Mortality Bytes casts players again in the role of Rincewind, from the first game.

Death, the grim reaper, who normally ushers the Discworld inhabitants into the afterlife, is on an extended vacation. This means that those whose "time is up" are faltering around in limbo. Now it's up to Rincewind to bring him back or suffer the fate of immortality.

Gameplay is divided into 4 Acts. There are many locations to explore and a multitude of obstacles in Rincewind's path to overcome. Conversations with characters and interaction with inventory objects is necessary to move ahead.

The game features unique humour similar to the previous game.

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Credits (DOS version)

122 People (119 developers, 3 thanks) · View all

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 82% (based on 40 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.8 out of 5 (based on 90 ratings with 3 reviews)

Shut up, shut up, SHUT UP!

The Good
Discworld II has great graphics, with large well-animated characters and nice backgrounds. It also has one of the best intros I've seen in a computer game to date (think Monkey Island II with skeletons instead of monkeys, and Eric Idle singing "That's Death"). The in-game soundtrack is also quite good, but nothing to get worked up about...

The Bad
...especially since the dialogue is really, really tedious and annoying. The fact that Eric Idle is a great comedian doesn't mean I want to hear him reading aloud naff monologues every single time I click on something in an adventure game. The situation would still be tolerable if not for the fact that all the other actors sound like drama-class rejects from hell, with lines to match their skills. I do understand that animated adventure games these days are expected to have digitized speech, but listening to this game is sheer torture. (You might think I'm concentrating too much on just one aspect of the game, but this isn't an action game like Medievil, which has about the same level voice acting as Discworld II - there is a LOT of dialogue, and it's all bad, believe me!)

The Bottom Line
It's a Terry Pratchett novel with pretty animation, some interaction (puzzles, that is), and all the dialogue read aloud by Eric Idle and the janitor along with some of his "funniest" drinking buddies. Were this a text-only game, I imagine I would have rather enjoyed it, since the jokes and puns actually work most of the time, but the acting puts me off the game every single time I decide to give it another go. I actually can't say much about the puzzles and plot because I never could get into the game. If you're a Terry Pratchett fan, go read a book and forget this!

(Actually, if you speak "All your base are belong to us" English yourself, you might not notice how bad the acting really is...)

Windows · by Late (77) · 2003

Quite good, but missing just that little extra.

The Good
In the sequel to Discworld, Rincewind finds himself assigned with the task of locating Death, who's gone missing; the undead stinking up the streets is becoming a problem in the not-so-fair city of Ankh-Morpork. Naturally, no one is going to actually help him any. On the way, he passes through most of Discworld's regions, and a couple outside of it.

Rincewind is accompanied by his semi-animate sidekick, the Luggage: A travel chest of sapient pearwood, sporting more legs than the average caterpillar and an unrestricted storage capacity, an excellent excuse for limitless inventory.

The graphics are now 640x480, and well-drawn too; the clean animation on hand-painted backgrounds really make the best of the 256-color palette. The music is a particularly pleasing kind of ambient symphonic; the fact that it's low-key makes it all the less jarring when it changes with the scenes, and it sets the mood nicely. The only catch is that the sound is 8-bit, but this is only really noticeable in a few spots (and sad noiseheads like myself kinda like quantization noise anyway).



The Bad
If you've read a fair amount of Pratchett the jokes may be old already. This may be the biggest problem for the already-converted. The puzzles are almost exclusively of the shopping-list variety , to the point where Rincewind himself makes resigned jokes off it; depending on your preferences, this may ruin the game completely. I didn't really mind, however.

The NPCs are sometimes thin; there's a bit too much recycling of voice talent going on. I don't think I noticed this very much the first time around since I was laughing harder and spending more time in each part, but this became glaringly obvious when I replayed it. The conversation itself is usually pretty good though.

The last couple of acts are pretty small; as you run out of areas to solve puzzles in, Rincewind says outright that there's no need to bother going back (which is at least honest). It's by no means as bad as the original in this respect though, and again unlike the original, I didn't butt my head against any bugs in the endgame.

Eric Idle's Life of Brian-esque song number is fairly gratuitous, and has potential for lodging in your brain like the worst of pop. Thankfully, it tends to get exorcised by the excellent title theme and ingame music.

And finally, there's a certain lack of overall spirit to the game; it's pretty obvious that the plot was adapted by people who aren't Pratchett, and this creates a feeling of people trying to sound like someone they're not.


The Bottom Line
Definitely try before you buy. If you aren't laughing after 15 minutes, don't bother, since it all hinges on getting the humor. If you get it, then the little things will probably seem perfectly excusable, and if you don't, they'll probably seem glaring. And if you don't like long conversations, definitely give it a miss; DW2's characters ramble on to no end.

Do try it if you like this sort of thing. There's some good craftmanship in there.

Windows · by Ola Sverre Bauge (237) · 2000

One of the funniest and best-looking graphic adventures at the time.

The Good
The humor of Discworld II sucks you in at the first cut sequence: Our hero, Rincewind, investigates trouble in an abandon warehouse with a giant orange orangutan; think "the greatest cartoon MTV never made in 1995." The gameplay is just your average "point and click" adventure game, but on top of the cartoon visuals it works brilliantly. Discworld II has it easy when it comes to story: the game is based on Terry Pratchett's brilliant novel series, which guarantees an excellent narrative pace and conflict.

The Bad
Discworld II is full of puzzles, and every adventure gamer knows that not every single one can be consistently entertaining. In fact, there are a variety of puzzles that are just plain frustrating. But the incredible story and visuals help to justify the irritating moments, and when you've completed the game as a whole you won't even think back to the few oddball puzzles.

The Bottom Line
A damned fine graphic adventure with beautiful cartoon visuals and intensely witty story. If ever there's a chance to pick a copy up, make sure you don't let it pass; timeless games like this one are hard to find.

Windows · by Ricky Pugh (6) · 2004

Trivia

Animation

Discworld II: Mortality Bytes! features more than 25000 frames of hand-rendered animation cells.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Ola Sverre Bauge.

SEGA Saturn added by keth. PlayStation added by Macintrash.

Additional contributors: Trixter, Macintrash, Rebound Boy, Jeanne, Macs Black, Laverne, Patrick Bregger.

Game added April 25th, 2000. Last modified November 14th, 2023.