The Path of Death

Player Rating6.98/8

"#14 overall, #1 for 2016"
based on 1020 ratings since 10/11/2018
played 3,139 times (finished 186)

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.
7/8
-- 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
GREAT GAME!!!!! Worth it all the way, well written and engaging. Im going to play it over and over!
-- Tony Hildebrand on 5/17/2019 12:49:19 PM with a score of 0
This was an amazing and engrossing story. I loved every minute of it. Great job!
-- C6H8O6 on 5/14/2019 12:00:09 AM with a score of 0
Whoa,It was a long journey to the end.This took the longest time to complete for me than any other one I’ve played on this site.I completely and thoroughly enjoyed the game and the choices felt very interesting.The lack of customisation irked me but that’s a huge mess to implement.Keep up the good work writer.Hope to see more of your content.Once again for the record,Seriously one of the best games I’ve played on this site.

8/8.Excellent and Well Written(Gramatical errors given a pass)


Stalks Welsh Strikes Again.
-- Welsh on 5/5/2019 4:18:16 PM with a score of 0
I loved this story it’s really adventure.
-- Rachel on 5/1/2019 4:19:35 PM with a score of 0
Amazing Story. First off, I gave it a 7 because of the huge amount of typos, improper Grammar, and continuity errors. (i.e. Lich at beginning of story, Lynch at the end) A great storytelling style, with a good use of foreshadowing (some a little too predictable, but that might just be me). The author is a very cultured man, with many pop culture references. Crab and Goyle was the most obvious one. I love that you made a bunch of Endings, even early on, that aren't death. The endings may provide the player the end they want, but may not be as satisfying. Also, towards the end, there was more repetition of words like "and" for example.

Now, for the praise...

My favorite character was Kai, as he had that Deadpool vibe going for him. All the nerdy references in the story, very subtle, but amazing!!!! I saw some Skyrim, Harry Potter, and others that I can't remember/name. The Soren/Malign character was also fun, to see the struggle for power (I personally let Soren win. If you can't find out why, take another look at my username) was truly amazing. The element of romance was also great, one criticism (I know I'm praising, but this is a smaller one, that is forgivable) is that you never state (in the storyline I played) when the relationship becomes sexual, and it just sort of is told to the reader explicitly a lot further into a story. Also, terrific character development for The Grand Necromancer, he had good motivations, and you made him a lovable character. You also included some pacifist endings, and that was amazing. Blaise is also a great character, and it was great to see her develop both physically (not like that, jeez you got a dirty mind) and emotionally. A bit disappointed in the choice of what magic you can use, i wish you didn't limit the character to only Blood Magic, HOWEVER, i do realize this is based not only on your willpower, but is also genetics. So, limiting makes sense, it just is a little frustrating if the reader's personality wants stealth or lightning, etc. Furthermore, i don't know if you did this by mistake, or on purpose, i appreciate it either way, is the labeling you left in the story. For example: Garden (Romance) or Battlefield (R) or even Castle (Romance). I thought this was a great touch, but reading other comments, it seems like that might have been more of a mistake.

And now, SPOILER ALERT

SPOILERS!!!!

That should be adequate warning...


I personally achieved 4 Endings.

The first was escaping the castle when told to wash up, and those choices I made to achieve that would be the most realistic choices that I would make.

The second ending was the farmer epilogue, after saying no to Blaise to rebuilding the Empire. My second favorite ending.

The third Ending was an Epilogue, with Mr Ch... Yeah you know who I'm talking about. A great ending, but I wasn't satisfied with that ending, so I then went for the ending I really want.

The fourth ending I achieved was the one where Dante summons the elementals and absolutely DESTROYS the Alliance. The Kai Tax was an amazing comedic detail ;) you made me laugh. This is definitely my favorite ending.

I wish there was a way to be a "Good Guy" like Soren, and still have a good story, but I do realize this is supposed to be the evil side. The romance was an amazing, and predictable touch. The love for cranberries is hilarious. But grammar and typos nightmare lowered the overall score from 8 to 7. A bit surprised with typos and grammar when you said Mizal helped, but that's okay. Maybe read up on grammar, expand your vocabulary, and proofread everything next time. I'm definitely going to play this again later, and see what other endings are in store.


P.S. commenting on mobile sucks, as you can't post long comments, or the post button disappears. I don't know why. Please fix if possible!
-- CatholicNinja on 4/18/2019 12:45:38 PM with a score of 0
So, mobile sucks, an I can't post long comments, as the "Submit Comment" button disappears if too long. I will post my real review later when I get on via PC.
-- CatholicNinja on 4/17/2019 9:44:18 PM with a score of 0
This game is AMAZING, the people act like actual people, the game is very descriptive, the only thing bad is the opportunity to soft lock yourself in some choices if you save at the wrong time, but other than that, its amazing
-- Papyrus20XX on 4/17/2019 2:26:25 PM with a score of 0
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