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Indie Archaelund: RPG that combines 1st-person exploration with 3rd-person TB combat.

Discussion in 'General RPG Discussion' started by DavidBVal, Feb 22, 2019.

  1. DavidBVal 4 Dimension Games Patron Developer

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    PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    [​IMG]

    Hi folks! There was another thread recently in which this project was mentioned, I promised the Codex would get all the information first from now on, so here it comes. My apologies if many of the points described still offer little detail, more will come in the next months.

    For those that don't know, I'm already a full-time game developer thanks to the success of my mobile RPG (Exiled Kingdoms) which I've been developing and expanding for the last five years. but simultaneously I've been working on the concept of a PC RPG, and giving thought to mechanics and the plot. Development itself started only last October, but I'm quite pleased with how it's advancing. Archaelund is an ambitious RPG in a post-apocalyptic fantasy world. I decided to set it in the same world as Exiled Kingdoms, but it's is a completely standalone game, not a sequel.

    Planned release: Early Access in Q1 2020, full release will take another couple years, at the very least.

    Disclaimer: this project is in development. Everything is subject to change, and in particular, most of the 3D models and UI elements you can see in the screenshots are temporary placeholders that will be replaced by much better stuff in due time.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Archaelund, at a glance
    • Exploration as you remember it: take your party of adventurers through a vast open world. Explore as you wish, find awesome secrets and run into unexpected trouble, get involved in conflicts or just pursue your own goals and discover what lies beyond the horizon; the world is being handcrafted with a lot of love, just for you to discover. You can play Archaelund your own way.
    • Tactical combat, but also immersive dungeon-crawling: just as the best classics did, you'll be able to explore the world of Archaelund in first-person perspective. But when combat starts, perspective seamlessly changes to top-down, and you'll issue orders to your party, placing them over a battle grid to face your enemies.
    • Deadly battles with a focus on strategy: a non-inflationist, bounded system will ensure that every battle matters, and every opponent is scary. When your characters advance in levels, you'll gain new tactical options to defeat your enemies, not merely bloated and meaningless numeric stats.
    • Career-based character progression: your party members will start out as thugs, ruffians, scavengers, hunters, beggars or fortune-tellers; initial Career will be chosen semi-randomly. Later on you can reach the more "heroic" Advanced Careers, leaving your ignoble origins behind... Archaelund features over 60 Careers divided in Basic, Advanced and Elite.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]


    Story Introduction

    Humanity has survived, and now has returned to its ancient Homeland: Archaelund.

    Two centuries ago, a magical cataclysm brought the Horrors upon our world, and the Andorian Empire was annihilated in a matter of weeks. The few survivors fled to the savage island of Varannar, a distant Imperial Colony. For generations the Exiles endured the hardships of this new life, although they never again stood united under the old Imperial banner.

    The Exiled Kingdoms were born, but the scars left by the Fall were still painfully visible in them, for the Kingdoms were mere grotesque parodies of what humanity had once been. Varsilia, the mightiest of the Kingdoms, became morbidly obsessed over Imperial history and preserving its traditions. Ilmarans turned into fanatical zealots of a new faith, while in Thuram, the remnants of the Imperial Wizards established a magocracy that disregards all matters except the arcane, and quickly declined into endogamy. On the west, the Kingdom of Mercia had emerged from the surviving Imperial Legions, establishing a nightmarish rule based on slavery and arbitrary discipline. The four Kingdoms held irreconcilable views and ambitions, and locked together in a small and hostile land as they were, they often plotted against each other or even clashed openly in the battlefield.

    But the in-fighting ceased when, generations later, a route back to the old continent of Andoria was discovered, and it was proved that the Horrors were no more. For the first time in centuries humanity looked at the future with optimism, and many left aside the old grudges and obsessions. Expeditions were sent, and thousands of colonists, soldiers, adventurers and ruffians embarked to Archaelund. The promises of land, riches and Imperial relics excited the imagination and ambition of thousands, from mere farmers to noble second-sons.

    They quickly found they were not the sole claimnants of Archaelund, and re-colonization has not been peaceful nor easy; the Horrors are gone but they left behind a scarred world, eldritch energies and warped monsters roam the lands, and a subterranean race called the Geldryn, once slaves to the Andorian Empire, now aspire to inherit the surface world. Because of all this, Archaelund is a land full of danger, adventure and opportunity.

    Just like many others before, your party of adventurers has finally saved up enough money to embark and sail East. The Silver Star has crossed the Andor Sea for two weeks, when you catch the first glimpse of the ancient land of your ancestors, unimpressed by its mundane visage. Little you suspect that, very soon, you're going to get involved in a plot that traces back to the terror of the final days of the Empire, and now threatens with destroying the remnants of civilization...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2019
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  2. Chaotic_Heretic Dumbfuck! Dumbfuck

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    Basically a reverse jRPG?
    You know while playing Exiled Kingdoms; I always thought the dev should try making a TB cRPG. THE UNIVERSE LISTENS TO ME.
     
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  3. laclongquan Arcane

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    Not bad, particularly the intricate character sheet~
     
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  4. Mr. Magniloquent Learned

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    Intriguing. The GIF makes it look fluid and enjoyable. I really enjoyed Betrayal at Krondor doing things both ways. My immediate curiousity, is about how combat is engaged. Will detection/engagement radius be variable? Will there be ques to the player about proximity or threat of engagement?
     
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  5. toro Arcane

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    Too many colors.
     
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  6. lukaszek the determinator

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    typo?
     
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  7. eric__s ass hater Developer

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    That skill sheet looks suspiciously similar to the Realms of Arkania system. I like what I see so far! And I'm looking forward to seeing more.

    And I especially hope Minotaurs and Frog Men like the ones in the top picture are playable characters.
     
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  8. laclongquan Arcane

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    I am seeing Odium, Bloodlines and BG/NWN here.
     
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  9. holla_cabezas_de_mierda Arcane

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    looks good, would buy.

    edit: never heard of exiled kingdoms, but liked what you have shown with this new game enough that I just bought exiled kingdoms which actually looks pretty nice too...
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
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  10. Reinhardt Arcane

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    warpig
     
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  11. Viata Arcane

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    I like the art. Did you draw it, DavidBVal?
    Btw, are you making the whole game alone or there will be artist or something like that helping you? What engine are you using?
    Going by that GIF, should I expect puzzles like Dungeon Master?
     
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  12. V_K Arcane

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    That skillsheet makes me moist :bounce:
     
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  13. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Reminds me of a game I once played
     
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  14. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    http://www.exiledkingdoms.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=16645&start=70#p53930

     
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  15. DavidBVal 4 Dimension Games Patron Developer

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    PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    You can't imagine how hard it was to fit everything in there without looking chaotic or too complex... it has been harder than coding so far. But in the end I could even fit the skill rank slots .

    The empty lower area offers contextual help whenever you hover over an item. For instance, on a skill it will explain you the mechanics, etc.

    It's actually more fluid than the GIF shows, but I don't want to make hi-res videos just yet with all those placeholder 3D models. Yes, enemy detection will vary depending on the creature and you'll be able to react and try to get out of range (or initiate combat yourself, with a small initiative bonus)

    I haven't played RoA yet! My big inspiration are PnP systems like Rolemaster, WFRP 1st edition, and others. And as cRPGs go, obviously Gold Box and ToEE regarding concept and combat, and Morrowind regarding world design. But there's a small bit of all my favorite games like MMs and Wizardries in there, of course.

    Yes, Minos and Batrax are playable races. There's also a goblin archer up there, and the woman on top of the broken pillar is a Varannari explorer.

    I do everything except the art. Well, I coordinate and integrate the art, which is almost a job in itself if you ask me. My main 2D artist is Ignacio Corva, he made the banner scene (it's even more awesome in high-res, believe me!) and the player portraits.

    [​IMG]

    Yes, puzzles will be important, and one of the reasons of the 1st person perspective.

    It excites even me, and I made it!
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
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  16. Viata Arcane

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    Is he this guy?
    If so, I can see he has a good experience in drawing characters for rpg setting.
     
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  17. V_K Arcane

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    Do yourself a favor and play Star Trail (the original, of course). Among other things, it has the same principle (first-person exploration, isometric combat) and some damn good dungeon designs to support it.
     
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  18. Jimmious Arcane Patron

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    Looks cool! And the transition to the combat isometric view is indeed seamless! I like that the enemies actually stay where they were in 1st person and not magically reposition themselves
     
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  19. Jenkem Cipher Patron

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    Make the Codex Great Again!
    kickstarter when?

    stretch goal hire jarlfrank
    stretch goal hire avaloon
     
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  20. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    DavidBVal Do you plan to post this on your website also?
     
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  21. DavidBVal 4 Dimension Games Patron Developer

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    PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    Yes, and on other forums and Steam over the weekend.
     
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  22. Cosmo Arcane

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    DavidBVal

    I found your previous game to be a remarkable little thing despite its humble origins, with a lot going for it. Terse but playful writing that never verges on edgy territory, a surprinsingly broad and enjoyable world, and what's more a basic hack and slash gameplay that, rather than trying to pass for more than it actually is, intelligently decides to deal with what is its true core : attrition, which is arguably very simple gameplay-wise but that's here calibrated to near-perfection, keeping things tense all the way, dungeon raids being a prime example. I also like the non overpowered high-end abilities and the freedom/need to respec in order to optimize/try out builds, which keeps things fresh in the late game and makes you avoid a near universal pitfall in RPGs.

    In conclusion i sure hope Exiled Kingdoms' qualities were not the mere product of the project's limitations, and that you'll be able to carve the same cleverly humble trail in this project...
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
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  23. Rivmusique Arcane Patron

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    I love it.
     
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  24. Great Deceiver Arcane

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    Looking great! Good luck!
     
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  25. Viata Arcane

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    I hope the camera view change speed keeps this way. Also, DavidBVal wouldn't it be better if the camera goes up from the enemies instead of from your party? Since you are looking at them, the camera going up while aiming at your party is kinda strange.
     
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