Avernum Games Ranked From Worst to Best

Avernum is a remake of the Exile series created by Jeff Vogel. Based on graphics alone, these games may be largely ignored by modern gamers, but was known for its gameplay mechanics and deep storytelling.

That being said, the Second Trilogy did introduce a newer game engine and expanded on the story. Taking place in a subterranean world where the Avernites are constantly at war with the surface-dwellers of the Empire. Join us now as we count down to the best Avernum game in the series.

5. Avernum 5

DeveloperSpiderweb Software
Release Date 21 February 2008
PlatformsPC, Mac Os, iOs

Since there are so many titles in the series, it is fortunate that the games do not require prior knowledge of their predecessors, to be played.

In Avernum 5, you take on the role of a soldier of the peaceful Empire, whose world is turned upside down when an Avernite called Dorikas attempts to assassinate her.

The standard RPG elements of assembling a party, turn-based combat, taking on side-quests and discovering new weapons are par for the course. The unique twists and turns of the story are also exceptionally well thought out.

The outdated graphics will definitely turn away many modern gamers, but hardcore RPG fans who do decide to stay will find something of interest here.

The sound is also severely lacking and one could consider the budgetary restraints at the time, especially considering that the developer is by and large an indie developer.

All in all, graphics and sound aside, it might be with starting up the old floppy-based machine to give this game a whirl.

4. Avernum

Developer Spiderweb Software
Release Date22 June 2000
Platforms PC, Mac Os, iOs

The first game in the series introduces the player to a world of caves, monsters, demons and an assortment of undead things wanting to end your life. Add to that the tyrannical king of the surface world known only as the Empire and one has a solid premise for a RPG game.

You and your party of three are thrust into these chaotic circumstances with 80 towns and 42 outdoor regions to explore. The usual stat-building gameplay found in RPGS are on offer with the usual classes like Cleric and Sorcerer.

Graphically the game is an eye-sore and exists in a world before 3D rendering and textured graphics became the industry standard.

Lag times are quite noticeable and puts a dent in the gameplay experience. The music is bearable, but ambient sounds lack the realism to draw one in.

To understand exactly how limited this game is in its graphical presentation, consider how it only takes 26.6MB to install.

3. Avernum 6

Developer Spiderweb Software
Release Date 20 November 2009
Platforms PC, Mac OS

Praised for its solid storytelling, Jeff Vogel presents us with a literary treat in the form of an old-school turn-based RPG. He even provides the voice of the narrator which certainly adds to the light-hearted appeal of the genre.

The combat system while seeming simple on the surface level can be quite intuitive once more character abilities are unlocked. The world offers plenty to see and plenty to do.

The storytelling, as always, is the defining characteristic of the franchise and the game certainly doesn’t disappoint in the writing department.

That being said, poor graphics could also be considered to be a defining characteristic, especially when compared to other titles in the genre. The game suffers from poorly animated sprites, and the low quality of the graphics become even more evident when one encounters beautifully painted portrait images in game.

Silence is also an issue pervading the entire experience with no music, aside from what you hear on the title screen.

2. Blades of Avernum

Developer Spiderweb Software
Release Date14 June 2004
Platforms PC, Mac OS

Blades of Avernum not only give you access to more adventures via the developer’s website, but gives you access to a powerful editor to design your own adventures.

As a player you have four standard adventures to choose from, namely, A Small Rebellion, The Valley of Dying Things, The Za-Khazi Run and Diplomacy with the Dead.

You can choose to start the game with a default party or customize your own unique party members. Exploration and combat is similar to what you would expect in this series of games and is driven by a powerful narrative.

The game does very little in the way of innovation and doesn’t add anything of major significance to the genre. Graphics are still heavily outdated, even considering the new games engine in place.

Animations are lacking, which makes combat a rather dull experience. Hardcore fans will find something to enjoy here and the story elements are solid enough to attract newcomers to the franchise.

1. Avernum 3

Developer Spiderweb Software
Release Date 20 August 2002
Platforms PC, Mac OS

Our pick for the best Avernum game is the third installment in the franchise and it continues on where its predecessors left off. Avernum is still considered the Empire’s prison, where the tyrannical king sent all the undesirables, via a magical portal.

As unrest ensued, the Avernites rose up to slay the evil king to gain their independence from the Empire. Five years later and you along with your party members including the Slith and Nephil races are sent up to the surface to investigate the empire that has since grown dormant.

The usual warrior and shaman classes are on offer and the sound adds to the ambience experienced in the more timid parts of the game.

The graphics are still sorely lacking in a title that would really have garnered a larger following had the developers spent more time on its aesthetic appeal. Controls can be horribly complex, with too many buttons and commands required to execute the simplest actions.

The addition of a mouse doesn’t improve the situation either and even slows it down some. Get over the graphical aspect and you’re presented with a world that has depth and significance where your actions actually make a difference.

The world of Avernum is a living, breathing entity where its inhabitants go about their daily business, even as you set out to explore the rich surroundings.