Pretty Flying for a White Guy - Magic Carpet on GOG.COM

I have a lot of fond memories from playing this game excessively with my friends back in 1994-1995, and it's yet another one of those admirably innovative Bullfrog titles which are so hard to characterize or pigeonhole into some convenient genre category. MC is essentially an Oriental first-person 3D action game with both puzzle and strategy elements - and you play as a guy sitting on a flying carpet the whole time. Try selling *that* idea to any AAA publisher these days...

Despite being more than a little bit atypical, the core mechanics in MC (i.e. collecting mana orbs by defeating monsters and rival wizards and using those orbs to upgrade your base until you've reached a certain threshold) are actually both intuitive and addictive, and the gameplay can easily give rise to that "just one more level" mentality. The highly impressive 3D engine (complete with deformable terrain) ensures that both traversing the levels and engaging in the action dimension of the gameplay looks great and feels satisfying, and the moody soundtrack by Russel Shaw will forever be etched in my brain. In short, this is a true classic on GOG.COM and well worth $5,99.

Buy the game here:

http://www.gog.com/en/gamecard/magic_carpet

5 Comments
6 Comments
Posted by Egge

I have a lot of fond memories from playing this game excessively with my friends back in 1994-1995, and it's yet another one of those admirably innovative Bullfrog titles which are so hard to characterize or pigeonhole into some convenient genre category. MC is essentially an Oriental first-person 3D action game with both puzzle and strategy elements - and you play as a guy sitting on a flying carpet the whole time. Try selling *that* idea to any AAA publisher these days...

Despite being more than a little bit atypical, the core mechanics in MC (i.e. collecting mana orbs by defeating monsters and rival wizards and using those orbs to upgrade your base until you've reached a certain threshold) are actually both intuitive and addictive, and the gameplay can easily give rise to that "just one more level" mentality. The highly impressive 3D engine (complete with deformable terrain) ensures that both traversing the levels and engaging in the action dimension of the gameplay looks great and feels satisfying, and the moody soundtrack by Russel Shaw will forever be etched in my brain. In short, this is a true classic on GOG.COM and well worth $5,99.

Buy the game here:

http://www.gog.com/en/gamecard/magic_carpet

Posted by BeachThunder

This game always made me feel sick =(

Posted by mfpantst

OHMYGHOD I fucking loved that game.  It's on my top 10 list of hours spent in game.

Edited by ahoodedfigure

My eyebrows just went up.
 
What I don't quite understand is how much exploration plays a role in the game. It seems like you can run around and look at all the little people, but the emphasis seems to be on moving quickly to gather mana and build, lest you get squished. Is there much to see beyond the strategy elements?

Edited by Egge

@ahoodedfigure: That's a fair characterization as far as pure mechanics go. Indeed, staying around to smell the proverbial flowers is not a great idea when you got an aggressive AI wizard who will do his best to soak up all the available mana in this ruthless zero-sum game of resource extraction. Exploration as a gameplay element is essentially limited to picking up "spell urns" (usually positioned in some distinct, clearly marked locations on the map) to gain new abilities and discovering where the monsters are so you can gather more mana.

Just as Dungeon Keeper, Magic Carpet is at its core a fairly straightforward (but also fun) puzzle/strategy game with a great atmosphere which makes the simple experience of just being in the game world more absorbing and rewarding than it has any right to be.

Posted by Rolyatkcinmai

I believe I still have this game on 3.5 floppies. It's in the drawer with all my Wolf 3D shareware and Day of the Tentacle box.