Interview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Wed 17 September 2003, 04:16:22Tags: Beyond Divinity; Larian Studios
This is the editted chat log from the developer chat with Larian about Riftrunner. Probably the most fun I've had in a dev chat in ages! Here's a taste:
[Exitium] [El_Gammon] Do you give us your word that the final title won't be something like "Riftrunning Riftrunner's Riftrun" or something like that?
[Lynn] sorry, no ;)
[Thorun] Why not? I like that title...
[valtar] yeah sure you do
[Relex] pray that doesnt happen...
[Lynn] I pray with you ;)
[Arhu] Every night..
[Lynn] We didnt like the DD title either
[Larian] Never say never
[Relex] lets erect a shrine for it!
[Arhu] You have my word, ElG, but that doesn't say much.. ;)
[Lynn] and kill the inventor!
[Larian] I honestly thought that when I saw Divine Divinity it was a typo in the contract
[Lynn] yes, me too - i was shocked, and not only me
[Larian] It took several hours before I finally figured out that it was for real
[Thorun] We were all shocked when Lar told us...
[Arhu] Divinity 2 is supposed to be called just that, not the Double-D-Word 2.
[Lynn] you had to see the faces of everybody - they all thought we were joking
[Larian] And then I had to listen to somebody for hours on how market research had shown Divine Divinity to be better than Divinity.
[Lynn] we still have nightmares
[Larian] Never trust market research
[Larian] Don't quote me on that when it comes to the box guys ;)
[Thorun] But later the same evening we were all so drunk we forgot about it...
[Lynn] yes, but the next day..
[Larian] Oh yes, that was very bad ;)
[Lynn] I have pics - anyone? ;-)
[Larian] Ahum - done
You can't go wrong with the truth, baby!
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Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Wed 27 August 2003, 12:03:29Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our sixth preview of the creatures you'll spot and kill in Golden Land. This part is titled Doctor Bug for reasons unknown to me. But, here's a critter:
The golden bull differs from usual one by his strength and impossible power of endurance. These bulls can survive without any food or water for some weeks. They have their name because of their beautiful skin. The costumes and dresses made of the golden bull's leather are the permanent attributes of Marvian aristocracy. That's what these beautiful animals suffer from. Hundreds of hunters search for the golden bulls in the desert, and their livestock decreases every year. That's why one can rarely meet the proudly walking golden bull nowadays. I want to ask, on behalf of entire science world, somebody who will meet the golden bull - please, don't kill him, just stay on distance.
Beef, it's what'll have you for dinner.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Thu 14 August 2003, 06:45:00Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our fifth look at the zoology of Golden Land, this time featuring mountain nasties and the river area of Zarechie's fearsome beasts. Here's one of the six critters:
Legends say that wolkodlaks are evil magicians who turn into the animals and hunt for the lost people in the forests. Don't even listen to these fairytales! It is obvious that the human cannot turn into such animal - it conflicts any considerable laws. So, wolkodlaks are people who were turned into the wolf-like creatures as a punishment, probably by the evil magicians. Exactly this point of view seems to be rigorous. The modern science has already gave up the version of self-turning into wolkodlaks as nonsense, but the news from Velgrad are trying to refuse the academic point of view. The rumors say about one Elder who turns into wolkodlak at nights, but has quite becoming style of life. That means that even being the creature, this Elder does not violate the limits of good behavior. But, however, it is really not good thing to meet wolkodlak at the road. Big creature, of 2.5 meters high, with awful claws and fangs, the wolkodlak could even tear the ox to pieces.
The first four sentences of this paragraph are about the funniest damned thing I've read from a developer in a long, long time. Reminds me of the old Steve Martin SNL sketches about the medieval dentist.
Big thanks to Dmitry Glaznev and Roman Volkov!
Interview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Thu 7 August 2003, 05:21:39Tags: Mayhem Studios; Shadow Vault
Our interview with TomÃ¡s BencÃk of Mayhem Studios about their upcoming, turn based tactical RPG with the post nuclear twist, Shadow Vault.
5.) Can you tell us a little bit about the character system in Shadow Vault?
The player mostly plays for the alliance (people from the past) that tries to tear the Earth out of the invader's hands. In some phases of the game though, the player will have the opportunity to check out the game from the opposite point of view. Responsibility lies upon 6 to 15 units, depending on the scenario. It is up to the player to choose which units he will use and thereby influencing what special abilities he will have at disposal. For example - a medic able to heal wounds, a sniper working on long distances, or a technician able to operate mechanical units.
Except for standard units there are also heroes in the game. My most favorite is the powerful and mysterious Doctor Black, 9-year old boy with a cynic point of view and paranormal abilities. Major Zuzka is also worth mentioning because he can be trained to become the most powerful unit in the game.
Technicians are always a plus in the wasteland.
Review - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Fri 25 July 2003, 17:09:26Tags: Ambrosia Software; Escape Velocity Nova
Our in-house review of Escape Velocity Nova. I liked it.
For those who haven't heard of the franchise, imagine Elite, Privateer, or more recently, Freelancer. Now imagine those types of games with six major story arcs and factions to join. Imagine them with capital ships like destroyers and carriers you can purchase and use to troll around space. Imagine them using sharp, well animated 2D graphics. Imagine them with reputation tracking for each faction in the game. Imagine them with tracking pilot abilities and using that as the basis for gathering missions. Imagine dozens and dozens of outfit options for your ships, including marines to help you board ships, better scanners, engine improvements, the ability to add outfit or cargo space by converting one to the other, and much more. Sound good? Well, it is.
Yup, that's part of the intro.
Interview - posted by Spazmo on Tue 15 July 2003, 03:14:19Tags: Ambrosia Software; Escape Velocity Nova
Our interview about the recently released Escape Velocity Nova with the President of Ambrosia Software, Andrew Welch.
The Escape Velocity series has been quite popular because of the open-ended gameplay it offers, with compelling scripted story lines intermingled to spice up the action. It's really quite hard to quantify what the games are like, because there are many different approaches you can take in playing, but loosely, they are a blend of space role playing/action games with a high fun factor.
This game sounds mighty good to me.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Sat 12 July 2003, 02:33:03Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
This is the fourth article in our series about the creatures and nasties in Golden Land. This time up, the creatures of the Silent Forest:
These are ancient forest spirits who live in dead stumps. Many people think that they are the spirits of lost trees which weren't able to leave the trees, some kind of tree ghosts. Of course, carfads are very hostile to the people, who are mostly the reason of trees' death. Carfades differ from each other: there are males and females, and males are much more dangerous than the females. Carfades have one more unpleasant thing, which is useful to know. The thing is that if they see the human, they do not attack him at the moment; they throw pieces of wood and stones, which got stuck in the wood, at the enemy. These attacks aren't very effective, but those creatures are much more dangerous in close combat. That's why it is much better to shoot carfads at the distance, disregarding the stones and wood they throw at you.
Sticks and stones may break my bones...
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Thu 10 July 2003, 09:34:31Tags: Jan Beuck; Master Creating; Restricted Area
This is a look at the general background information on the skills and attributes system used in Restricted Area, as written by Jan Beuck of master-creating.
Each character has 15 unique skills, fitting to his background and his potential. Unique really means unique - it was very important to us that there are no similar skills at all (for example, if one character has a skill that increases his attack speed, he has no other skill that effects the attack speed at all and no other character has a skill like this as well). I think this is very important as nobody needs 10 skills of each kind that do basically the same thing, maybe with a slightly different graphical effect, but somehow thatÂ´s very common. It was also very important to us that there are no skills which become worthless once you may learn a better one! All skills stay useful forever and no development point can ever be spend "wrong", except maybe for your personal opinion.
I like unique, it's good for skill sets to be unique. Easier to impliment, too!
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Mon 7 July 2003, 00:32:04Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Nearly every fantasy setting game has it's undead, and Golden Land is no exception. In the third chapter of our series, written by Dmitry Glaznev, on the nasty critters that make up the setting, we show three of them. Here's the Navia:
Navias are evil spirits. They are the people whose body is dead, and soul was lost on its way to Veles. The body of this creature rots, and as far as the brain is the part of the body, navias become completely mad. They are quite weak creatures, but their ability to dazzle their enemies can give you some unpleasant moments. Sometimes some of the senses stay in half-rotten body of navia, and then the crowds of navias gather over this creature, making some kind of colony.
So, they're like ants, only dead, and humanoid, and mad, and no queen.. Okay, they're nothing like ants.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Wed 25 June 2003, 19:07:20Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our second look at Golden Land Zoology, this time featuring Chud and Bukis, one from the forest, one from the Northern Lands. Here's a bit about the Chud:
Chudies are the prehuman race of biped creatures. As legends say, it is the first intelligent creatures created by the gods. But, gods have disliked something in them (probably, their ungovernable character), and they had created the human. The hatred of half-minded chudies against people is the envy at more loved and lucky children.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Mon 16 June 2003, 15:37:11Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our first look at the zoology of the Golden Land setting, Chapter 1: Goldenland Forest.
Legends say that aspides are being born from the egg of the bird hatched by viper, or conversely. The result is predictable - the snake with wings which is not able to fly. With all its lack in physics, this creature is really dangerous and poisonous. The dexterous watcher could see how aggressive aspide waves his wings, trying to stand and show the higher growth. This is what shows the bird roots in the snake and the reptile's longing for skies. This feature can really touch anybody! Some pathfinders say that the aspides are trying to fly not only in the moments of danger, but also, for example, when they see the moon.
Looks like I'll need a bigger bug.. errr.. snake zapper.
Interview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Mon 16 June 2003, 15:04:03Tags: Oxygen
Our first interview with Ariel Chai, the guy currently developing Oxygen, a space trading, action CRPG. Here's a taste:
9.) Are there outlets for players who aren't interested in combat? Will there be a way for those players to earn a living without killing lots of things? Can you rig a ship for running away by adding more engines and stripping weapons?
Well, nobody said you can't be a pacifist trader (I can't imagine a person buying a trading vessel for the weapons), but it's a tough world out there, you'll need to make sure you can defend yourself. (of course, you're going to see a lot less action in a trading ship)
Weapons will have no effect on cargo and vice versa, so if you don't use their space, too bad. (if I don't have it this way, things get mixed up, and too many ships will have access to powerful weapons). But in the economical level, you could invest your funds on an engine/thruster-upgrades rather than a shiny new (and big) weapon.
Well, at least trading will end up resulting in less combat situations. That's a plus.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Fri 6 June 2003, 21:13:31Tags: Eric Dallaire; Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader; Reflexive Entertainment
Our first part in our guide to factions in Lionheart. This installment features a faction called The Wielders. It contains background information, perks, and much more!
Description: You have been accepted into the secret society of the Wielders, a group of heretical outcasts who embrace the taint of magic. To prepare you for the hardships and prejudices the Wielders must endure, your master has cast a permanent enchantment that grants you additional powers. Your Cold, Electrical and Fire Damage Percentages are increased by 4, and you receive +5 Hit Points (increasing your maximum hit point total).
Requirements: Accept Invitation to join the Wielders
For more info, click me!
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Wed 4 June 2003, 09:09:51Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
This is our last article on the magic sytem in Golden Land, mainly because all the disciplines have been covered. So, saving the worst and most evil for last, fear the School of Darkness article!
Mirror of Pain - the anger of the face reflected in the mirror poisons the victim's blood, killing it slowly.
Mirror of Pain makes victims reflect on why it's wrong to piss you off!
Again, thanks to Dmitry Glaznev, script-writer of Golden Land for these articles.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Thu 15 May 2003, 20:54:52Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
School of Magic of Gods is our sixth article on the fun and mayhem you can cause in Golden Land using those wacky and powerful casting skills you can gather in the game. For example, there's this:
The hammer of heaven blacksmith - The huge hammer of the blacksmith-god Cronner falls on the skulls of your enemies, giving them little chance to stay alive.
And everyone knows, I love hammers. This one is as big as it gets!
Thanks, Dmitry Glaznev!
Editorial - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Sun 11 May 2003, 16:57:46Tags: Burut Creative Team
Yet another developer editorial on things they like and don't like in CRPGs these days, Dmitry Glasnev and Sergey Bouravtsov of Burut tackle the subject this time:
Moreover, such tendency of last years as mixing the genres has always given some exceptions from the definitions of computer role playing games to the most keen classifier. Besides, some gaming elements, without which good CRPG can't exist, can be defined. Our point of view is that it is, firstly, a worked out and debugged role system, freedom of player's actions, and the convenience of controls, a clear and natural interface. Those are the moments we'd like to dwell on.
Yeah, that's a pet peeve of mine, all the damned RPG Hybrids watering down the genre.
Interview - posted by Kreegle on Fri 2 May 2003, 04:39:35Tags: Temple of Elemental Evil; Troika Games
Here's the log from tonights ToEE chat. Thanks to the Troika people who participated in the chat.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Tue 22 April 2003, 10:35:27Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our fifth installment on the magic system in Golden Land covering The School of Elements.
Funeral Pyre This spell burns alive all those who dared to step too close to you...
I love a spell with an optimistic name!
Editorial - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Thu 10 April 2003, 01:14:00Tags: Jan Beuck; Master Creating
Jan Beuck offers his perspective on what makes a great CRPG in one of our little developer-written CRPG mechanics articles:
Lets start with a really critical point. ItÂ´s easy for me and I will find many friends here with words like, great game needs great gameplay, but the sense of this article is to talk about game mechanics. A critical point when creating an RPG, one that really can cost you half of the players (the one half or the other one...) is the discussion between a single main character and a party. Both have been sucessfully demonstrated in various titles, but for some itÂ´s only a true RPG if they control the classic party, others disagree and say that itÂ´s only an RPG if the slip into the role of a single character. Although I like both, my opinion is that slipping into a single character is exactly the sense of role-playing, itÂ´s essence. Controlling a party makes it more like a tactical or strategy game than an RRG. Combat, for example, becomes mass-battles. Real time combat games, it also detracts as a party disables any real action. The player becomes a viewer that can only make specific guidelines for the characters to act, but he can not be any of the characters. Especially strange is that there are games you can win although your character (read: you) has died and only his friends go on (like in Dungeon Siege).
I've always liked the I'm role-playing a party crowd. They're funny.
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Sat 5 April 2003, 17:06:16Tags: Burut Creative Team; Golden Land
Our fourth article on the magic system in Golden Land. This one covers the The school of Light.
Supernova - powerful magic energy of light causes great damage to your enemy.
Nothing like baking nasty critters in town!