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Tue 26 May 2020

Game News - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Tue 26 May 2020, 14:44:27

Tags: Heroic Fantasy Games; Knights of the Chalice 2

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It's been 11 years since the release of Knights of the Chalice. Now the Knights of the Chalice 2 Kickstarter is finally live and will run until July 2nd.

Greetings to you, worthy friends! KotC 2 is the brilliant offspring of acclaimed computer role-playing game Knights of the Chalice (now available on Steam). The new game is intended to recreate the best aspects of past 2D D&D computer RPGs such as Baldur's Gate 2, Temple of Elemental Evil, Dark Sun Shattered Lands, Champions of Krynn and Planescape: Torment.

KotC 2 uses the OGL 3.5, the ruleset at the root of tabletop RPG Dungeons & Dragons 3.5. D&D 3.5 is well known for its tactical depth and the wealth of its character classes, feats and spells. KotC 2 expands the library of races, classes, feats, skills and spells in order to be even more Devious & Deadly than D&D!​

I don't have a credit card and there seems to be no paypal option, so I will hop on the Codex fundraiser bandwagon as soon as DarkUnderlord puts that up.

There are 28 comments on Knights of the Chalice 2 Kickstarter live

Sat 23 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Sat 23 May 2020, 00:50:10

Tags: Owlcat Games; Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous

Today's Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Kickstarter update is a lore update about Queen Galfrey, the perpetually youthful ruler of Mendev. Owlcat have chosen to introduce the queen in a rather unique way, in the form of an anachronistic press interview. I suspect it offers a glimpse at the motivations behind some of the political intrigues players might become involved with over the course of the game.

Greetings, Your Highness! Thank you for agreeing to this interview.

Greetings to you and your readers. I don't usually have time to converse with bards, chroniclers, or the press, but if this interview attracts even a handful of new recruits to the ranks of the crusaders, then it is my pleasure.

Today you are famed throughout Golarion as one of the leading lights of the church of Iomedae. Many people call you "the Sword of Iomedae." However, some of our readers will be unaware that you started out as a paladin of another deity, Aroden, who was taken from us, to the profound sadness of all his faithful.

That is correct. Sometimes even I am surprised by how young the church of Iomedae is. And by how long we have been without Aroden. The beginning of the last century was a difficult time for me. I had lost my father and my god, I was crowned queen, and then the gates to the plane of chaos burst open right on the borders of my kingdom. Iomedae took up her heavenly post at that time, shouldering the heavy burden of protecting all mortalkind as Aroden did before her. My faith in Iomedae was my salvation. If you will permit me to wax poetic, finding my faith in Iomedae was like drowning in a raging sea and suddenly finding granite beneath my feet, raising me up. That’s what my faith in Iomedae means to me.

That leads us to our next question. You are more than one hundred years old, Your Highness. There are few substances on Golarion capable of extending the natural lifespan of any given race. It is assumed that you use one of these substances to prolong your life: the extremely costly and extremely rare sun orchid elixir.

I make no secret of it. The decision was taken by the church of Iomedae. You can ask the leaders of the church for further comment if you wish to know more about the reasons behind the decision. But the long and short of it is that the church feared the disorder that a change in leadership would bring while Mendev was embroiled in a war against the demons. For myself personally, this forced longevity is not a boon, it is a necessity, one that is bound up with my duties as the leader of the crusade.

Your Highness, our next question may seem provocative, but we would be remiss not to ask it. Many of your political opponents see your prolonged life as a power play. Some even go so far as to claim that you are exploiting the situation with the demon invasion to hold onto the throne of Mendev, your youth, and control over the flow of money funding the crusades from wealthy supporters.

My "political opponents" clearly have a low opinion of both my moral rectitude and my intelligence. Amassing power in a country that at any moment could be wiped off the face of Golarion by hordes of demons from the Abyss? I would rightly call a fool anyone who came up with such a scheme. And I say "fool" rather than use more strident language that is beneath the dignity of a monarch.

That is not an outright denial, Your Highness.

You would prefer a more direct answer? Then, of course, I deny it. I am not selfishly holding on to the reins of power, I am not treating the crusade coffers as my own personal bank, and I have no intention of living forever. Whoever is making these wild claims clearly has no understanding of the concept of duty. I, however, do. I have a sacred duty to my people, to my goddess, and to all Golarion.

The other argument that is often put forth in these debates is that Mendev is hosting too many foreign fighters. Volunteers flock here from all across Golarion to fight in the crusade. Crusaders do not answer to the government of Mendev, but to you personally, as the figurehead of the crusade movement and the leader of the paladins of Iomedae.

I must correct you on that point—the troops fighting in the crusade do not all answer to me directly. Far from it, in fact. For instance, the Hellknights are wholly independent and act as an allied force. I merely coordinate the actions of all the crusade troops.

And yet you still wield considerable influence over this massive military force.

Remind me to make your newspaper office my first target when I reveal my true visage and declare myself the tyrannical eternal queen of the entire continent. But that moment has not yet arrived, alas. Until then, I must continue battling the unending hordes of the Abyss. And thank Heaven that across all Golarion there are brave souls who are willing to leave hearth and home to defend our world.

It must take a special kind of person to do that.

Yes. Indeed it does.
As Owlcat would say, hail to the queens.

There are 10 comments on Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Kickstarter Update #51: Interview with the Queen

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Fri 22 May 2020

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Fri 22 May 2020, 23:58:07

Tags: Brian Fargo; inXile Entertainment; Nathan Long; Wasteland 3

The second episode of inXile's new series of Wasteland 3 dev diaries, again premiering at IGN, is about the game's characters, factions and narrative. It's presented by Brian Fargo himself along with Nathan Long, who it seems has once again found himself the last man standing after the departure of all the other major writers. Together they introduce some of the setting's major players, including the Reagan-worshipping Gippers and their leader Mother Nancy Reliance, who control Colorado's oil supply, and the amiably corrupt Sergeant Kwon, the party's liaison with the Patriarch's police force. Brian Fargo's favorite character however is the psychotic Victory Buchanan, who we met in the Wasteland 3 backer alpha. The Patriarch's equally bloodthirsty daughter Liberty Buchanan makes an appearance in the video as well.

According to Nathan, Wasteland 3's narrative should feel more cohesive and less episodic compared to that of its predecessor. While in Wasteland 2 you discovered the conflict over the course of the game, in Wasteland 3 the premise is presented to you from the outset, but you won't necessarily know which side to believe. Naturally, reactivity is still a major focus, including multiple endings similar to those in Wasteland 2. Brian says the reactivity will be better telegraphed and reinforced in Wasteland 3, so that players feel like the world is always watching (something that George Ziets also talked about last year). In summary, it sounds promising.

There are 18 comments on Wasteland 3 Dev Diary #2: The World, Story & Characters

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Thu 21 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 21 May 2020, 20:12:29

Tags: Team ADOM; Thomas Biskup; Ultimate ADOM: Caverns of Chaos

Classical roguelikes aren't our main focus on this website, so after ADOM was released on Steam back in late 2015 I didn't pay much attention to it. Obviously the game continued to be updated, and it was eventually released on GOG in late 2018. Last year creator Thomas Biskup even crowdfunded an ADOM tabletop RPG on Kickstarter. However, for the past few years his team's main project has been Ultimate ADOM: Caverns of Chaos. Originally announced in late 2017, Ultimate ADOM is actually a sequel of sorts set after the defeat of the original game's villain, superseding Biskup's abandoned ADOM II/JADE project. The game is just a dungeon crawler this time without ADOM's open world, but it's got a heavy focus on factions. It's based on the Unity engine and has an optional isometric graphical mode. So why am I telling you this now? Because the game appeared on Steam yesterday. Here's its teaser trailer:

The Story so Far

Evil has been vanquished. Peace has returned to Ancardia, and the peasants dare to dream once more of prosperity. Seven very different factions vie for control over the cataclysmic aftermath left behind by Andor Drakon’s defeat. And somewhere, deep down in an inhospitable cave, ChAoS is stirring again.

Pick up your blade, prepare your spells, check your daggers and ready your bow, for you are about to enter the ominous Caverns of Chaos. Choose your allegiance carefully, for you are nothing more than an expendable asset to the masters you choose.

Fight for a mercenary's glory and purse, for the justice of a folk in decline, for the light of purity or even for ChAoS itself. Every choice you make will determine how you approach the ever-changing Caverns of Chaos before you.

Features and Gameplay

  • Ultimate ADOM is a modern reimagining of traditional rogue-like dungeon-crawling.
  • Endless procedurally generated dungeons, countless monsters, items and a grand selection of very different skills allow for unlimited replayability
  • Intuitive control system will get rid of the need to memorize hundreds of keys. Though you can still do so, if you're into that. We are not judging.
  • Your chosen class, gender, race and allegiance will change the way the game challenges you. NPCs will react differently, new quests will be open to you and the world may change completely based on your performance.
  • A deep magic system with several unique schools of magic and dozens of spells per school. Flaming auras that damage nearby enemies, cold snaps that freeze rivers, animating the very walls of the dungeon to aid you - everything is possible.
  • A stealth system introduces a totally new way of playing the game: Instead of hacking or blasting all opposition to pieces you now can sneak past adversaries and avoid conflict by silently sneaking out of deadly situations.
  • Interactive items! Topple braziers to spill their burning oil on unsuspecting enemies. Push coffins to block passage ways, or smash them in hopes of loot. Lock doors, smash them, open them or turn them into wooden golems to (hopefully) serve your bidding.
  • Turn yourself into an abomination and graft your enemies’ body parts on yourself. They won’t need them any more, and what is better than wielding two swords? Two swords and an axe to harvest more bodyparts than ever before.
  • Choose or toggle between graphic mode and traditional ASCII at any time. Toggle between 3d mode and top down view, in ASCII or in the graphic mode. Toggle everything you wish, we probably have a game mode just for you.
  • “Play the way you want” – countless options of how to tackle the dungeons awaiting you. Befriend or tame creatures, slay monsters, delve deeper or keep exploring and expanding the cavern levels you have already found. Set traps and smash doors, or unlock them with the keys you found. Push coffins and other objects!
Ultimate ADOM will apparently be out on Steam "later in 2020". If you'd like to know more, there's a ton of information on the game's official website, where you can also sign up for the closed alpha.

There are 23 comments on Ultimate ADOM: Caverns of Chaos is coming to Steam later this year

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Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 21 May 2020, 00:47:28

Tags: OtherSide Entertainment; System Shock 3; Tencent

OtherSide Entertainment released a System Shock 3 pre-alpha gameplay teaser back in September. It was a last ditch attempt at finding a publisher for the game, which predictably failed. Over the next couple of months we began spotting numerous laid off employees on LinkedIn, and in December an anonymous former developer confirmed on our forums that OtherSide Austin no longer existed. OtherSide's Boston studio still survives somehow working on god knows what, but we all thought System Shock 3 was dead and buried. Then last week LESS T_T noticed that OtherSide's domain had been quietly transferred to Chinese conglomerate Tencent a month earlier (and for good measure as well). After several articles in the mainstream press were published about it earlier this week, today OtherSide confirmed somewhat vaguely that System Shock 3 had indeed been picked up by Tencent.

We are happy to announce that Tencent will be taking the System Shock franchise forward. As a smaller Indie studio, it had been challenging for us to carry the project on our own. We believe Tencent’s deep capabilities and expertise as a leading game company will bring the franchise to new heights.
Some outlets interpreted this as an announcement that Tencent had acquired the entire System Shock franchise, but current IP owners Nightdive Studios were quick to shoot that down in a statement to PC Gamer.

While the tweet implies that Tencent now owns System Shock, Nightdive Studios, which is currently working on a System Shock remake, clarified that it remains the owner of the property.

"OtherSide licensed certain rights from us to make sequels. Those rights have now been transferred to Tencent," a rep said. "Nothing about that transfer in any way impacts our ownership."​

What's clear in my opinion is that this is not a standard publishing deal announcement. OtherSide sound like they've passed System Shock 3 on to a new owner, not like they're about to work on it themselves. My guess is that Tencent intend to find or form a new studio to develop a System Shock sequel, perhaps with Warren Spector onboard to oversee development. Indeed, there were rumors to that effect last month. We shall see.

There are 59 comments on System Shock 3 has been acquired by Tencent

Wed 20 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Wed 20 May 2020, 20:07:31

Tags: Scape-IT; SKALD: Against the Black Priory

SKALD: Against the Black Priory is undoubtedly among the coolest of the various retro Ultima-likes in development these days. One of its many good qualities is that developer Anders Lauridsen knows how to stick to a schedule. He released the backer alpha a month after the game was Kickstarted last summer and it continued to be updated throughout 2019. A development update published last month announced that the game was now effectively in closed beta, with a final release planned for September. Today, that beta build was made available to backers.

[​IMG] [​IMG]

Hello everyone!

The time is finally here: I happy to announce that the first tiny piece of the Beta build is finally up!

It's short and sweet and consists of the games prologue. It should take about 15-20 minutes to play through and you can consider it an interactive trailer of sorts . It also should give you a pretty good idea of where the game is going.

How do I get it?
Easy: Just use the link you got for the Alpha demo. It should take you right to the game's Itch page and there you should find the Beta build easy as pie. If you've lost your link, get in touch with me and I'll hook you up.

The Next Step

Beta 1.0.0 is for all backers and a handful of friends of the community. As beta-development proceeds, backers of KNIGHT-tier and higher will get a brand new key so they can follow the closed beta development.

Feedback and reaching out

By far, my preferred way of getting feedback in the demo is via the Discord-channel. We have sub-channels set up for that express purpose and keeping things in one place makes it a lot easier for me to review.

Beyond that you can always reach me at contact(at) or on twitter.

Hope you all enjoy the demo!
Back in November, Anders launched an Indiegogo InDemand campaign for SKALD, allowing him to continue accepting pledges indefinitely. So if you weren't a Kickstarter backer and want to get in on the beta, it's not too late.

There are 6 comments on SKALD: Against the Black Priory now in beta, coming September

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Wed 20 May 2020, 00:53:43

Tags: Externus: Path of the Solari; Winterborn

Way back in January 2019, it was reported that a group of former Infinity Ward developers had formed an indie studio called Winterborn for the purpose of developing a tactical RPG based on the studio head's homebrew tabletop setting. What kind of RPG would a bunch of ex-Call of Duty guys create? The answer it turns out is a cartoony turn-based tactical RPG inspired by Japanese SRPGs and featuring CYOA sequences. Its title is Externus: Path of the Solari and it was announced last month, properly revealed last week, and today it's on Kickstarter. The full reveal trailer is also the pitch video:

Externus: Path of the Solari is a character-driven tactical roleplaying game (RPG) adapted from an original tabletop game. We take inspiration from classic tactical RPGs like Fire Emblem, Final Fantasy Tactics, and Shining Force along with modern game development to craft our own story and give you characters that matter. Our approach is designed to allow you to get to know the characters in your party along with strategic combat in full 3D battlefields.

  • Strategic Turn-Based Tactical Combat
  • Full 3D Battlefields
  • Character-Driven Story
  • Storybook Choose Your Own Adventure Sequences
  • Death Matters, Each Ally You Lose Will Change Your Story
  • Unique Full-Color Artstyle
  • Based On An Original Tabletop RPG
Externus is a storybook brought to life and your actions on and off the battlefield can change the pages as they're presented. You should think about the risks and rewards of bringing certain characters and using their specialized abilities. Your actions and choices matter. This goes back to our tabletop roots of wanting to tell a collective story that changes based on the players around the table. We encourage party interaction through our campfire scenes and storybook sequences that pay homage to the original tabletop game. Think about the world in terms of Fate. Death will be permanent in Externus, how will you react? Let the story play out and see how a character's death affects those who knew them both in positive and negative ways. Maybe it'll even send a ripple effect out into the world!

We are a group of passionate game developers with over 11 years of experience in making games. We're building Externus using our custom BroadSword Engine built on the MonoGame Framework.
Winterborn aim to raise $50,000 and their plan is to release Externus next summer in June 2021. A basic copy of the game is available for $18 for the first week of the campaign, with beta access available at $30. There's also a free pre-alpha demo you can check out at their site.

There are 26 comments on Externus: Path of the Solari is a tactical RPG from ex-Infinity Ward devs, now on Kickstarter

Tue 19 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Tue 19 May 2020, 23:39:14

Tags: Animmal; The Way of Wrath

The unique shamanistic turn-based tactical RPG The Way of Wrath has become one of my more anticipated upcoming indie titles, so this is news that I probably should have posted about sooner. The developers at Animmal have planned from the beginning to launch the game on Early Access, but they're not sure when. In order to reach an informed decision they plan to run a closed beta first, which they've been taking signups for on their website since March. Besides that, they've continued to release all sorts of videos on their YouTube channel, the most significant of which is this brief gameplay footage from last month.

According to Animmal's most recent developer diary, the beta keys will start going out at the end of this month. It sounds like they also plan to temporarily make it available on Steam later on in June. After that there will be the Early Access proper, and then possibly a Kickstarter, though they aren't entirely sure about that part yet. It all starts from the beta though, so head on over to their website and sign up.

There are 1 comments on Sign up for the The Way of Wrath beta

Preview - posted by Infinitron on Tue 19 May 2020, 01:42:23

Tags: Mathieu Girard; Solasta: Crown of the Magister; Tactical Adventures

Since the conclusion of the Solasta: Crown of the Magister Kickstarter campaign back in October, developer Tactical Adventures have continued to publish development updates and community polls on a weekly basis. These have generally been too incremental in nature to post here. Today however Solasta reached a major milestone with the release of a new features trailer that showcases the current state of the game, including character creation, exploration and combat.

Apparently, Tactical Adventures recently gave members of the press a more in-depth look at the build this trailer is based on. Only a few websites (Gamereactor, Screen Rant, Tech-Gaming) have come out with previews, but they're all thrilled with what they saw. Here's an excerpt from Gamereactor's preview:

Once you have assembled your party of four, it's time to start the game up, at which point you will be greeted by a cutscene. This is where Solasta's stories will be told, through fully voiced dialogue, with each character determined by you just prior. A high elf scholar will, for example, speak formally, with grace and confidence.

As each of the four tells their separate stories between chugs of ale, each character will take you through a specific tutorial section. For example, we were shown how to sneak out of prison as the team cleric and while escaping, we also got to see how Solasta utilises verticality and, quite honestly, we were blown away. The game doesn't just let you climb ladders, you'll get to actually traverse as if you were playing an exploration-based platformer but with a classic isometric RPG control scheme. Manipulate your environments, jump across gaps, crawl through holes in the walls, climb foliage - you can essentially do anything, truly. When we tell you that you can manipulate your environments we don't just mean that you can press a button or move a rock. You can destroy entire bridges if you wish to.

The next tutorial we got to see showed off basic combat mechanics (with some cool twists added). In the tutorial scenario, our dwarven fighter was to cross a bridge over a beautiful flowing river (but oh lord, our hero was a bit too high up) but wolves were both on his heels and blocking his path on the other side. The scenario revealed some classic RPG mechanics such as attacks of opportunity (i.e. attacking automatically when an enemy gets too close) and being able to see the turns of each character in the battle at the top of the screen (this is, of course, a tactical advantage).

A cool mechanic that was perfect to show during this tutorial stage was 'shove', a simple move to push enemies back. In this case, however, that shove threw the targeted wolf all the way down into the abyss below. As with all other moves, you won't succeed in everything you do since it's an initiative-based game. As the fighter finally reached the other side of the bridge, the wolves were still following him, prompting our hero to interact with a large rock standing on an elevation and pushing it off and onto the stone foundation of the bridge, causing it to collapse (which was oh so satisfying). Later on during the demo, we learned that the combat also offers plenty of vertical manoeuvres, not just linked to climbing or standing on various elevations but also levitation and flying, which is then cause for deeper strategic thinking. A thing to note, however, is the fact that you won't be controlling a singular character; you created your dynamic quartet and they're your responsibility now, but don't worry, if you learn how to combine their strengths, the characters will synergise perfectly, which is precisely what you want. Keep track of status effects (i.e. buffs and debuffs) and approach your enemies with tactics in mind and you'll do just fine - we hope.

Apart from this, light is a huge focus in Solasta, both in and out of combat as the game features a dynamic day/night cycle. Lighting, no matter if it's natural or conjured, has an impact on what you and your enemies can see, changing gameplay depending on what time of day you reach an area. The lighting doesn't just seem like an interesting and surprisingly deep aspect, it also brings exceptional beauty to the stark and stunning environments, of which there are many (get ready as it looks like we're going to get to explore a massive world in Solasta). In relation to the dynamic day/night cycle, players also need to make sure to rest and eat every 24 hours to keep their team at their best.

For us, Solasta: Crown of the Magister came out of the leftfield and from knowing very little to having seen the game in action, we're truly excited to see where Tactical Adventures takes things. From the intricacy of the real-time dice roll and the in-depth character creation through to the beautiful and manipulatable environments and the consequential use of light, we were hooked straight away. If what's to come continues to build on what we've just seen, we're sure that this is going to be one to watch as it gets closer to a full release.​

The game looks awesome. Hopefully we'll get to see more of this build ourselves.

There are 18 comments on Solasta: Crown of the Magister Features Trailer and Previews

Sun 17 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Sun 17 May 2020, 00:58:22

Tags: Stygian Software; Underrail; Underrail: Infusion

You might recall that in addition to the upcoming Underrail: Infusion standalone expansion, Styg has also been working on a content update for the original game. In the latest dev log, he reveals that the update will be oriented towards water areas and confirms that it will feature mechanical changes to psi. As for Infusion, there's nothing in the dev log about the expansion itself, but the updated engine it will use now has support for fancy particle effects. That'll make it easier for Styg to implement new abilities and allow the team create more visually appealing environments.

[​IMG] [​IMG]

Hi guys,

We're slowly wrapping up the work on the next content update for Underrail. This one is going to be mostly oriented towards the water areas in terms of content, and, as hinted before, will also feature mechanical changes to psi. It's coming soon™ and I don't really have anything more to say about it until it arrives, so instead I'll show you something cool that we've made for Infusion.

We're developing a particle system for the updated engine that will allow us to quickly make nice looking and varied effects. Besides being an upgrade to the previous system visually, the more important aspect of it is that it will allow me to more easily add new psi, special, and item abilities, because now I can quickly make effects for those, which was the most tasking part of the process. Also, the level designers will be able to use the new system to further customize the areas and really bring the environment to life.

Speaking of which, we now have an additional team member working full time on level and quest design, as well as writing, so we're going to be able to produce more content faster in the future. We're planning on at least one more major content update after this one, but, of course, at some point we're going to have to focus more on Infusion.

Let us know how you like new visuals.

Fantastic. I guess that content update might be more like an update for the Expedition expansion in practice.

There are 21 comments on Underrail Dev Log #66: Shiny Particles

Fri 15 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 15 May 2020, 23:58:58

Tags: Ceres Games; Realms Beyond: Ashes of the Fallen

As promised, the long-awaited Realms Beyond combat beta has been released to eligible backers. Players will get to assemble a party and can expect to face some tough battles in the Halls of Challenge, made tougher by the fact that savegame functionality hasn't been implemented yet. Here's the announcement:

Fellow Adventurers!

The long-awaited combat beta of Realms Beyond has been finally released to backers whose reward tier includes combat beta access. Assemble your party and enter the Halls of Challenge to brave tough fights that will put all your skills to the test!

The purpose of the combat beta is to provide feedback and bug reports to us, so if you are among those with access to it, we ask you to report any issues to us. The easiest way to do so is in our official Discord server, where we have opened a dedicated combat beta channel. You can also use our official forums at (account registration required). You can also write to support[at]

While the combat beta is not available to the public, there is no NDA on it. You can take screenshots, talk about your experience on forums and social media, or even record yourself playing it on YouTube or Twitch.

Since this is essentially a closed beta, please keep in mind that there are still bugs to be ironed out, balance is not perfect, and some features are missing. We will deal with those issues as we receive your reports. As of now, we have not yet implemented a savegame feature. If you want to speed up animations in combat, hold down <SPACE>. If you have any questions - or suggestions - feel free to contact us about them.

Happy playing, and may you survive the trials of the Halls of Challenge!
The combat beta is exclusive to original Kickstarter backers and is not available on the Realms Beyond preorder site. By my count, only 231 people pledged enough money to get it. Let's hope some of them upload videos to YouTube.

There are 12 comments on Realms Beyond Kickstarter Update #24: Combat Beta Released

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Fri 15 May 2020, 20:51:48

Tags: David Rogers; inXile Entertainment; Wasteland 3

inXile have put together a new series of Wasteland 3 dev diaries ahead of its release in August. IGN have gotten dibs on the first episode, in which lead designer David Rogers introduces the game's character and combat systems. The video offers a look at some of the new combat features, including new quirks that enable unique builds, brawling combos that stack up as you punch enemies, the new squad-based turn system in which enemies can move simultaneously, active abilities that are unlocked by weapon perks, and the highly customizable Kodiak vehicle. According to David, ammo in Wasteland 3 will be scarce and is intended to serve as a money sink, so diversifying your party's weapon loadout is recommended.

Looks very cool. If you've been curious about how Wasteland 3's combat has evolved over that of Wasteland 2, watch this video. inXile plan to release additional dev diaries in the coming weeks.

There are 40 comments on Wasteland 3 Dev Diary #1: Character Creation, Customization & Combat

Mon 11 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Mon 11 May 2020, 23:39:15

Tags: ATOM RPG: Trudograd; ATOM Team

ATOM RPG: Trudograd, the standalone expansion/sequel to ATOM RPG, is out on Early Access today. Apparently the game looks very nice, although most of our users don't seem to be interested in getting too deeply into it before the final release. There's no launch trailer, so I'll just quote the announcement post here:

Dear friends!

Today, after a half year of work, we are glad to present you with Atom RPG: Trudograd, our newest game published for Early Access!

Trudograd is a story in which your adventures in the Central Wastes continue after two years. In it, you will venture into a city that survived the war, to uncover its secrets in a search for a piece of pre-war technology that might just change the world forever.

You will be able to play the game by creating a new character which will be level 15 from the start of the game, to represent that you’re no longer playing as a cadet, but as a major of ATOM. Or, you can transfer a save file made after beating ATOM RPG’s final boss and continue playing as your old ATOM RPG character. The choice is yours!

We are publishing to Early Access to learn all of your wishes, critiques, ideas and general feedback on the early stages of development with a goal to implement the best ones, making Trudograd a community effort created by players for players. It worked amazingly well last time, and we hope to repeat that success.

From the get go, Early Access is going to feature updated graphics, updated roleplaying system (WIP), several large locations, dozens of quests, a hundred unique characters, new mini game, new quest format for some quests and many more interesting additions.

This version of the game will be updated every few months, with the final release sometime later this year.

We really hope you’ll like it! Thank you for your support, and...

Welcome to Trudograd.
Trudograd is available on Steam or GOG for just $11, so if you feel the same way as our users, we encourage you to just treat it as a preorder.

There are 17 comments on ATOM RPG: Trudograd released on Early Access

Interview - posted by Infinitron on Mon 11 May 2020, 01:29:25

Tags: Phantasie III: The Wrath of Nikademus; Phantasie IV: The Birth of Heroes; Star Command; StarCraft Inc.; Strategic Simulations, Inc.; Winston Douglas Wood

The third episode of Matt Barton's interview with Winston Douglas Wood begins with what turns out to be a fairly brief discussion of Phantasie III: The Wrath of Nikademus. The final game in the original trilogy included various new gameplay mechanics such as the ability to position characters in combat and a limb loss system inspired by RuneQuest. Winston approves of the former feature but isn't as sure about the latter, which he implies may have been more complex than it was worth. The interview quickly moves on to Star Command, a game that Winston is proud of but which suffered commercially due to the poor quality of its ports to the Amiga and Atari and the complete lack of a C64 port. He also recounts how three days before the game was released, he learned that somebody from SSI had changed all of its weapons, ruining his cousin's carefully playtested balance.

After Star Command, Winston was finally invited to SSI's headquarters to meet with representatives from a Japanese company named StarCraft Inc who wanted to hire him to create what would become the Japan-exclusive Phantasie IV: The Birth of Heroes. In reality, he simply designed the game on paper and they did everything else. Remarkably, he's never actually played it, although he has watched playthroughs on YouTube. They do appear to have implemented the new features Winston designed, including an innovative character creation system where players could select their characters' parents, intended to allow them to continue the legacy of their characters from the original trilogy. Indeed, his experience with StarCraft was positive enough that he agreed to make another game with them called Starfire a few years later, which is the topic of the interview's next episode.

There are 1 comments on Matt Chat 450: Winston Douglas Wood on Phantasie III, Star Command and Phantasie IV

Sun 10 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Sun 10 May 2020, 15:26:10

Tags: Colony Ship: A Post-Earth Role Playing Game; Iron Tower Studio; Vince D. Weller

The Colony Ship combat demo has been out for almost a month now and I'm pleased to learn that it's been going "spectacularly well" according to the new development update. The demo has been updated with some new features that Iron Tower have developed in response to player feedback, including a recoil control derived stat and a close combat engagement mechanic as well as various interface and character customization improvements. They've begun implementing the game's quests now and expect to be able to deliver the Early Access release by the end of the year. The development update includes a look at one of them:

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The combat demo:

Overall, it went spectacularly well (for a change). Of course, the beta test was encouraging but there’s a huge difference between handpicked battle-hardened veterans and the general public. It could have easily gone sideways but didn’t, which is encouraging.

To-date the demo’s been downloaded 3,754 times (no idea whether it’s good or bad, but surely it’s better than nothing), the average time played is 3 hours 2 min. We gained 4,359 wishlists in the last 30 days (and lost 227 - I assume they were disappointed with the demo), so our total is 23,261.

We spent the last 3 weeks processing the feedback and improving the overall design (added Recoil Control (a derived stat), close combat engagement (can’t do reaction shots at other combatants, cover bonus is halved), displayed initiative in combat as well as bonus APs granted by feats, full party weapons reload, etc). We’ve also added feat icons, more hairstyles and facial customization options (tattoos and scars), as well as the interface improvements.

The demo is now updated, so you can take it for a spin and see the current changes. We’ll continue improving the character & combat systems, and interface (and thus the demo), so stay tuned. In other news:


We’ve started implementing quests and we expect all the Pit’s quests to be done in 2 months. Let’s say 3 months to be safe, which will give us plenty of time to finish the Armory (half-done) and the Hydroponics (only the first area of the Hydroponics will be available in Chapter 1, the other two areas will require heavy gear and skills) to launch the game on Early Access by the end of the year.

Here’s the very first (optional) quest you recieve. If you talk to Tanner in the demo, you know that he wants you to go to the Armory but it’s a dangerous trip and you might need a buddy, either to become a life-long traveling companion or to shield you from bullets and die a noble death so that you can live and prosper.

The first companion is Evans the Rifleman and he will gladly help you if you help him first.

Animations - much improved; we’re slowly working through the combat animations, then will start on non-combat animations, different poses for bar patrons and such, and creature animations.

Various models - working on more energy weapons, including shotguns (more like that concussion rifle in Dark Forces) and SMGs.

Creatures - four out of six creatures are done, so we’re right on schedule there.

Stealth - next on the list. Sneaking and generating noise are the easy part. The tricky part that determines if the system works or not is what happens when you make enough noise to attract the guards’ attention. It works on paper and screen mockups, hopefully it will work well in-game.
Excellent. It looks like he failed that skill check, so you know those are representative screenshots.

There are 2 comments on Colony Ship Update #44: Demo Update and Status Report

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Sun 10 May 2020, 00:38:26

Tags: Ceres Games; Realms Beyond: Ashes of the Fallen

The Realms Beyond combat beta was originally supposed to be out in mid-2019, then in January, and then we were told that it needed a few more weeks. Turns out that that was more like a few more months, but now the wait is finally over and the beta is releasing next week on May 15th. It sounds like one reason it took so long is that it's not really a combat beta anymore, which means the Early Access release might not take too long to come out afterwards. Here are the details from the brief Kickstarter update:

Finally, we can announce the release date of the Combat Beta!

This first playable version of Realms Beyond will be available next Friday, the 15th of May 2020 for all backers at that tier. You'll receive a Steam Key via email from backerKit.

For backers whose rewards include only the Early-Access or the release version itself, please be informed that the Combat Beta evolved significantly further than originally planned. Divergent to the original idea of demonstrating only the combat system, we decided to implement most of the other game components as well (namely the dialogue system, quests, journal, mini map, script, chests, doors, trading, etc.).

Therefore, the development time from this version to the next release, the Early-Access, will be much shorter than originally scheduled.

As soon as we delivered the Combat Beta, we'll create a gameplay video for all backers without direct access to this version.

We would like to note that the Combat Beta is still a beta version, with all the flaws that entails.

Many thanks for your patience and understanding!​

Colony Ship, Wrath of the Righteous, Trudograd and now this. We might not have much in the way of actual releases, but this truly is the spring of RPG beta testing.

There are 10 comments on Realms Beyond Kickstarter Update #23: Combat Beta on May 15th

Fri 8 May 2020

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 8 May 2020, 19:23:25

Tags: Owlcat Games; Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous

You might recall that the Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Kickstarter campaign was halfway towards its final stretch goal when it concluded back in March. Now that the backer portal is up, Owlcat have been able to continue accepting pledges and today they reached it. The Hunter class and rideable dinosaurs will be added to the game. They're also doing a Q&A stream about the alpha later today.

Mission accomplished! The slacker backers have spoken, and with their help we’ve managed to hit the very last stretch goal, an intriguing and exotic one—the hunter class and dinosaurs will take their place in the game! Yes, you can now start thinking up a character build for your very own dino-riding hunter!

While our game designers are rushing to implement the new class in the game system, and our artists are starting the modelling and texturing for these new exciting animal companions, we want to thank the whole backer community once again. When we launched the Kickstarter campaign, we couldn’t even have imagined that you would surpass all our expectations and fund all the stretch goals we had prepared for you, even the wildest ones. Roarr!

Off to another news—two weeks have passed since the backer portal launch, and one week—since the Alpha test start. We’ve been receiving a lot of questions and comments from you during all this time, so we decided to go on air and have a live chat with you! Do you want to know more about the backer portal or alpha test? Or maybe you have some questions, comments, or opinions left unanswered? Join us for a Q&A session today on at 11 AM PDT / 2 PM EDT / 8 PM CEST / 9 PM MSK.​

It'd be nice if they showed some gameplay for those of us who aren't in the alpha.

There are 16 comments on Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Kickstarter Update #50: Dinosaurs & Hunter Stretch Goal Unlocked

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 8 May 2020, 12:21:48

Tags: Andy Kipling; Hardsuit Labs; Paradox Interactive; Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2

Over in Seattle, the developers of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 are still under lockdown and working from home due to the coronavirus pandemic. That was the topic of yesterday's development update by Hardsuit CEO Andy Kipling, which had almost nothing about the game itself other than a new screenshot and a promise that some new media would be dropping soon. However, it turns out that by "soon" he meant an hour later at Microsoft's latest Inside Xbox event. It's a new trailer showing the vampires of Bloodlines 2 enjoying a night on the town, interspersed with a few brief snippets of gameplay. Here's that along with an excerpt from the update:

Hey Everyone, it is me again, Andy Kipling, CEO of HSL and sometimes Producer on Bloodlines 2! I am here to give you an update on Bloodlines 2 development; or more specifically an update on how us developers are getting along.

First, let me start by saying that I hope you are all navigating these trying times brought on by this global pandemic in as safe and as best way you possibly can. At Hardsuit we have been working diligently to first and foremost ensure for the safety and health of all our employees while conforming with the Stay at Home orders of the state government. Second, we have been hard at work developing Bloodlines 2!

These times have introduced us to a whole host of new experiences, emotions and workflows: some good, some bad and some ugly. I figured it may be of interest to describe some of those to you.

First on the good side, full time exclusive WFH has been a pretty massive change for us; we typically favor in person interactions and the natural collaboration that takes place when you get multiple people in the same room together. But, at the same time we have taken this opportunity to become a better employer and developer and have fully embraced it. As a result, we have stood up new processes and workflows to foster and support creative development even when remote. We have updated and improved our back-end infrastructure to more easily support 100+ employees remotely pushing and pulling gigs of data to and from our servers. We are now more capable and flexible towards catering to individual needs by – be it mitigating a terrible commute through Seattle traffic, or working with individual talent outside of Seattle and outside of our time zone. All these things make us nimbler, and more adaptable in an industry that is constantly changing.

The bad part of the whole “never get to go into the office” (other than the Covid19 realities and its consequences) is that we miss out on a lot of what we have strived so hard to create, foster and cultivate at HSL: the positive work environment, the friendly random interactions with your fellow co-workers, and the general social dynamics of having a bunch of incredibly talented and creative people working together towards a common goal, all together in the same space. We, as a species, are without a doubt social creatures (much like our Vampire brethren…) and the day to day human interactions of being in the office can be very beneficial to our mental health. So, there are lots of discussions and considerations around staying healthy (both physically and mentally); trying to balance enough social interaction, while also stepping away from your computer – which may also be the only opportunity for social interaction.

In terms of examples this means that our in-person MTG games are now having to move online. Our tabletop gaming groups and campaigns are being conducted via Teams and even our after-work happy hours are shifting into video chat land where we can sit at our computers and enjoy each other’s company.

As a studio that strives very hard to separate and respect work and life for a healthy work/life balance, and generally frowning on the idea of “bringing your work home with you…” is seriously complicated when your work is unavoidably in, and inseparable from, your home. It can be challenging for the individual: suddenly finding yourself working 12 hour days, or waking up and going straight to your computer; and it can be challenging for the organization: how to support individual’s personal lives and time and ensure they are not overworking or burning out, but still being flexible to support what works best for them, be it working early or late. Disciplined communications, encouraging people to sign off and leave when the workday ends, respecting online status, managing co-worker expectations and more are all important steps we have taken and continue to take to mitigate this. But it is definitely the case that the “bad” of the full-time WFH means that work life balance is precarious and something we need to be ever mindful of.
It looks like the Bloodlines 2 official website has been overhauled, with a new visual theme, screenshots and a community section. It's a sign of a renewed marketing push after over six months of quiet. So maybe it won't be long before we get some new gameplay footage as well.

There are 19 comments on Bloodlines 2 Dev Diary #11: Working from Haven + Come Dance Trailer at Inside Xbox

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 8 May 2020, 00:59:20

Tags: Fabled Lands; Prime Games

Prime Games is an indie studio from Bulgaria that appears to specialize in developing digital gamebooks. Prime's first three games on PC were based on their own original fantasy and sci-fi settings, but they've apparently made enough of a name for themselves to get to work on a more famous IP. Fabled Lands was a short-lived series of gamebooks by British tabletop authors Dave Morris and Jamie Thomson released back in 1995-1996. Prime's adaptation is also called Fabled Lands, and it's their first game to be described as a full-fledged RPG. As you'll see in the recently released announcement trailer, the presentation is still rather simple and gamebooky, but maybe this is the beginning of a Trese Brothers-like evolution. I'll post it here along with an excerpt from the game's announcement post from last September.

Ahead of its time

Fabled Lands feels like a computer game on paper. There is no main arc, no plot to advance. Instead, a full-fledged open world which you can roam freely across six books, each of the books representing a single location. When you reach the high peaks of the mountains in the north of Sokara in book one and, for example, you could find a passage to the other side, you would continue your adventure in the Plains of Howling Darkness in book four.

Exploration brought forward many interesting and sometimes bizarre quests. Like releasing the High King from his frozen tomb. Or a city of ghosts that guards the Shadar's treasure vaults. Even obtaining the secret of immortality which is contained in the ancient evil of Kaschuf the Deathless.

There is also a harsh economy based on valuable local currency, namely Shards, obtained through wise trade of numerous items, lofty maneuverers with the local merchant guilds, stashing goods in your own property, or buying and selling cargo aboard a freshly bought sea vessel.

All this felt truly like what cRPGs offer nowadays.

Naturally, one thing led to the other…

In 2017 I founded Prime Games. I started small, adapting short gamebooks, developing my skills. Fast-forward and its 2019 with the studio having a bit of a portfolio built up. I was getting hungry for a bigger title and eager to finally sit down and create a full-blown RPG.

Over the years I followed Dave Morris’s Fabled Lands blog, learned of the anticipation for a worthy digital representation of their series and plotted (as a true acolyte of the dark lord would do). The day to reach out for the license of their work was upon me!

Plans were made. Plane tickets bought and ships outfitted. One of the players had the founder skill, and he plotted a course to the United Kingdom. Another considered the supplies the party would need. Soon we were ready to set out on a new expedition. And all because one of the players happened to spot the email address of the Fabled Lands’ authors…

Ladies and gents *drum rolls*

I am thrilled to embark on the journey of turning this epic series into a computer game. Let's start by saying that there will be:
  • Interactive world map that will become the heart and soul of the game with locations from the books.
  • Branching text visualized in a modern, user-friendly fashion.
  • Turn-based tactical combat system adapted for PC gamers, retaining and expanding upon the balance achieved within the books.
  • Reworked classes and character progression skill trees.
  • Resource management systems (inventory, blessings, hideouts, resurrection deals, skills, abilities, cargo, etc.)
  • Save/load for normal mode and, of course, the lack of such for Iron Man mode.
  • Visual effects and animations.
And many, many, many more things to come in the following months of teasers and updates.
Fabled Lands is scheduled for release in early 2021. For more details, check out the game's Steam page.

There are 10 comments on Fabled Lands is an upcoming digital adaptation of the 1990s gamebook series from Prime Games

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 8 May 2020, 00:06:44

Tags: Almkaz Games; The Fellowship Saga

RPGs based on the 5th Edition OGL ruleset are starting to become more common. Last week LESS T_T spotted what I believe may be the first 5E OGL blobber, a mysterious title called The Fellowship Saga. Very little information is available about the game or its developer Almkaz Games. We couldn't find an official website or any social media channels. However, one of our users was able to find a 20 minute gameplay video hidden away on YouTube, and I guess that's all you really need. It reveals a game with non-grid-based exploration and a combat system seemingly inspired by Wizardry 8. So here's that along with the brief description from its Steam page.

Unlikely Heros
In the kingdom of Falone, you control a party of adventurers who suddenly find themselves in an epic struggle for control of the crown.

Key Features
  • Turn-Based Combat: Accessible, Familiar, Tense, and full of choices by using the system from the 5th edition of the world's most popular RPG.
  • Party-based: Teamwork and synergies necessary by creating and managing a party of 5 adventurers.
  • First-person: Accessible first-person gameplay provides up-close action and full controller support.
  • Tailor to your playstyle: 12 Classes and nine races provide a wide range of customization and flexibility - and extended by one level of subclassing.
  • Exploration: Visit wilderness, towns, caverns, and dungeons while completing quests and defeating a wide range of creatures.
I should also mention that the video's description uses the term "blobber", which strongly suggests that the developer reads this website. Come on dude, show yourself! The Fellowship Saga is apparently coming out on November 17th, so I guess we'll know more sooner or later.

There are 31 comments on The Fellowship Saga looks like Wizardry 8 with the 5E OGL ruleset

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