The Path of Death

Player Rating6.98/8

"#15 overall, #1 for 2016"
based on 946 ratings since 10/11/2018
played 1,503 times (finished 92)

Story Difficulty4/8

"march in the swamp"

Play Length8/8

"Even light has to break at the rest stop"

Maturity Level7/8

"anything goes"
Some material may be inappropriate for persons under age 18. If this were a movie, it would probably be R.

Take control of Dagden, a small Orc child taken from his family and taken prisoner in Reaper Castle under the control of the Grand Necromancer, before making friends with his daughter Blaise and choosing how to make your mark in the world.

This is my spin-off to Mazkil, except better, longer and with more things you like and less things you don't like, whatever they may be. Somehow, I've appealed to everyone! I'd like to thank the OKish Mizal for beta-reading and helping me sort through this storygame and make it readable, she was a fantastic help. Please rate, comment and tell me if you find any bugs. Thanks, and enjoy!

Player Comments

Man, what can I say? This is possibly my favourite story so far, and I can tell you put a huge amount of effort and time into it. I usually read stories in one sitting and this took quite a few! I've barely used the save button until now. I had to write bloody notes for this one! So onto what else I liked:
The dialogue sounds realistic, doesn't break character, and is packed with a lot of well balanced humour. I also thought that the romantic element was pretty masterfully developed, especially towards the beginning and middle of the story where there are some really thoughtfully written scenes. The whole premise for the story is fantastic and I love how Dante turns out to not just be a classic megalomaniac necromancer trope, but actually develops into a sound guy. Also, his whole motive of creating the undead realm to reduce crime etc. is something the reader can at least identify a little with, which I felt got me slowly on Dante's side as the story progressed and you found out the characters are more than they first appear. Talking of characters, there were many excellently written characters from all walks of life who really stood out and helped to make this into more than just another fighting fantasy genre story. There was loads of action and generally well balanced choices that were proportional to the risks taken. Brilliant writing on the whole and a story to be proud of.

Okay, no story is without criticism and my criticisms are small. A few other comments pointed out some specific things I noticed as well, but there are some I'll go through that I don't think were commented about:
Some of the flow was a bit jaunty. It is a huge story, so that's to be expected, but it could have been even smoother by just going through and reading it out loud a few times (as well as eliminating grammatical errors, which seemed to increase towards the end). It just started to become a bit 'You do this. You do that.', and sometimes adjectives or nouns were repeated in close proximity. I also noticed quite a few titles for pages had comments left over for you to help script it, such as one saying (+5 Military Power) or something and (Romance) in another. Also, you can set free the demon in the book in the forbidden part of the library as many times as you like, so I'd suggest making the book links clickable just once. The main thing that was noticeable was the font changes, which were kind of random and pretty regular. Something I did find pretty funny was with the hellfire option with the knight where you can choose to put him out of his misery or let him burn. Both of them just let him burn (you sick monster!).
Oh yeah, and 'peacefully shoo away the rat' leads to killing it! Why'd you make me do it man?:(

(That being said... Mort is a pretty cool consequence of that, the lovable little fellow!)

And that's everything. Seriously, I loved this game.
-- AzBaz on 6/10/2017 4:01:02 PM with a score of 0
I don't know what I was expecting, but this game absolutely exceeded expectations. It took the standard tropes of dark fantasy and turned them upside down, managed to bounce between snarky, dark, fluffy, and badass all while delivering a great plot at a snappy pace.

The writing is fantastic, the characters are all very unique and memorable, the dialogue is witty and very natural, and the game just great fun all the way through. It's serious when it needs to be serious and funny when it needs to be funny, as well as packed to the gills with action and adventure with a non-standard protagonist and his equally unique love interest.

Just play it.
-- the_quiller on 2/29/2016 2:38:48 AM with a score of 0
Steve, this was both fantastic and inspiring.

The writing was great, and the narrative had an amazing voice that was very much you. The story was thrilling, adventurous, sweet and romantic in different aspects. I loved how you played with tropes, twisting them around in interesting ways. The Path of Death is filled with memorable moments, characters and personalities. This story is a must read and just goes on and on and on. I also highly enjoyed the lore in the story and how some early decisions came back to relevance later in the story.

This story is absolutely feature worthy, though we have so many excellent stories in the fantasy section. Perhaps it is time to break the fantasy section into two of its sub-genres so more top stories can sport the main StoryGame page. Or if the site moved to drawing six stories from a select pool of feature worthy stories randomly when the page is loaded, I would strongly support this story being among that group.

As great as any story is, there is always room for improvement. There were some grammar errors, but I would expect that in a story this size, without having a publisher and editing team to help support you. A tad more jarring were the rare instances where you typed the name of one character, when you were referring to another. I believe there was one instance where Blaise was called something else entirely (as in a name that wasn't even a another character in the story.) The occasional paragraph would read odd, where you would use the same noun repeatedly in close proximity, often at the end of one sentence and the very beginning of the next.

Other than that, only two things really jumped out at me. You had Checkers IIX in the story. Unless I missed a joke somewhere that this was intentional, the roman numeral for "8" is VIII. The other was Dagden suffering multiple broken ribs early in the story and immediately jumping around and going axe crazy on his enemy. I understand he's an orc, and they're 'special' but that really stretches my suspension of disbelief. Severe trauma to the core makes even the slightest movement incredibly painful. A character suffering multiple broken ribs would have severe difficulty breathing, possible internal injuries (fluid in the lungs, for example) and would be incapable of swift, sudden movements. Dagden tended to heal awfully quickly in general from what seemed to be rather significant wounds (with or without potions).

Oh, and I had 100 gold coins at one point in the dwarf town, but I was able to buy everything in the store, despite the combined price being more than that.

All that aside, I felt the story had so much effort poured into it - and was so well thought out and done - that I gave it a perfect 8/8 because taken as a whole, it was marvelous and cross blended multiple genres quite well. And I give very few perfect ratings. You should be quite proud of this story.
-- Bucky on 2/8/2016 5:40:39 PM with a score of 0
I had loads of fun playing this game, but I am a bit sad about how the begging plays out.
-- Algae on 2/12/2019 8:02:19 PM with a score of 0
I loved the story. Read through to several endings and it's great, really. I was just so frustrated...annoyed? at the writing style. Things get repeated, a lot, sometimes in the same sentence. The flow wasn't really there for me, it felt very blunt, and towards the end i was almost skimming through the larger paragraphs.
I'm not a writer so I might just be fussy over nothing. I'd still recommend this as a good read, as well as the prequel.


"You sit down at the dining table, and zombies bring out platters of food. You sit down at the table, next to Blaise. You grab a piece of bread. You begin chewing on the bread as..."

"Suddenly, the room fills with black, sulfurous smoke and you begin to cough as your vision's obscured. The smoke clears after a minute of coughing, and you pause."

"...stare at you for a few minutes, before the black, sulfurous smoke begins to be emitted from under their cloaks and you begin to cough as your vision's obscured."
-- glazedbagel on 2/9/2019 2:13:22 PM with a score of 0
Great Story and World building. There were grammar error here and there some word were confusing, and there were some dialogue that needed to be fix, i enjoy the character a lot but.. you know they all kind of the same.. but overall i really enjoy this story great job and thank you very much for your hard work
-- trojanmen on 2/9/2019 11:49:58 AM with a score of 0
-- tute11 on 2/7/2019 8:31:15 PM with a score of 0
-- ERIC CARON on 1/15/2019 11:44:38 AM with a score of 0
Don't know what to say but amazing! Still I wish there were hidden endings like in the insanity ending if there was hidden texts to not become insane, know everything and become omnipotent on a level at or higher than Mr.Chivinski. A sequel would be nice but I'm not sure how you would pull it off (preferably with the option to become a necromancer yourself)!
-- Maddox_Laskowski on 1/12/2019 12:59:14 PM with a score of 0
I really loved this story. The characters were crafted really well and were easily distinguished from each other as they were all unique. I thought that it was really clever how Dante was portrayed to the reader and I started off kind of hating him but then grew to trust him. It was also pretty funny, I especially loved when Dag was recruiting necromancers and also when he was swearing at the start and runs out of swear words. One thing I did get confused about was that I had 100 coins in a town and then I managed to buy everything (cost more than 100 coins). I also would have liked to explore Dag's powers more.
-- ghost11 on 1/1/2019 7:27:25 PM with a score of 0
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