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Game News Caves of Lore is a turn-based pixel art RPG inspired by Ultima VI and other classics, coming January

Infinitron

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Tags: Caves of Lore; Red Plume

Earlier this month, the Codex was contacted by a gentleman by the name of Michael Robins to inform us of a game he was working on called Caves of Lore. It's a turn-based fantasy RPG inspired by a diverse set of circa ~1990 classics such as Ultima VI, The Magic Candle, Buck Rogers: Countdown to Doomsday and Final Fantasy. Visually, the game doesn't quite resemble either one of these titles, with lovely pixel art that looks more like something out of the mid-1990s. However, it's easy to see the influence of the Gold Box in its tactical grid-based combat system and of Ultima in its overall world design. It's even got some sort of moongate-like mechanic determined by the phases of the game world's three moons. In a rare subversion, Mike released an introduction trailer for Caves of Lore before it had a Steam page. That's up now, so here's the trailer and an excerpt from the game's official website:



What is Caves of Lore?

Caves of Lore is a turn-based CRPG that combines elements of environmental exploration and character interaction with tactical, grid-based combat. The story focuses on a small island in the world of Solamria.

What games were an influence?

Ultima 6, The Magic Candle, Buck Rogers: Countdown to Doomsday and Final Fantasy all come to mind. These are just some of the games that I grew up with, and there are elements from each in Caves of Lore.

The World of Solmaria

Solmaria is vast, but our story focuses on Emerisk, a town on the island of Springhold, and the caves beneath it. This island holds ancient civilizations and secrets, and is key to what is transpiring in the world.

Around Solmaria circle three moons, each of which cause changes in the world and hide terrible and wonderful secrets. Many things on Solmaria react to moonrise and moonfall, including monsters and heroes, spells, magical runes that lock away secrets, and even portals to other worlds.

Everything seems fairly straightforward at first. Monsters, dark lord, etc… or maybe, there is more to this story than can yet be seen…​

Check out the website for further details about Caves of Lore's dialogue, character progression, spellcasting, itemization and more. The game's Steam page is rather sparse, but be sure to add it to your wishlist because it's going to be launching very soon, in January.
 

Kruyurk

Learned
Joined
Nov 16, 2021
Messages
312
It looks nice, obviously some efforts went in the visual aspect.

However the game artists should really stop the "heavy breathing" characters constantly moving up and down. It looks a bit ridiculous during the combat phases when everyone is squatting in rhythm. Even the skeleton at 56s looks asmatic. One of the video games tropes that annoys me a little.
 
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Lagi

Savant
Joined
Jul 19, 2015
Messages
724
Location
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on lvl 26 you find some epic loot sword thats deal 7-10 dmg?
yet your hero has 345 HP? Iam very interested in the system (and companions).
Attributes selection looks like touchup dnd speed instead charisma.
separate armor and defense - good good
to hit and dodge number looks like percent based roll?

DLWaYFc.png
 

Tyranicon

A Memory of Eternity
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So according to one of the steam trailers you can have a dog be the face of the party, and teach it to hold a torch or something.

dogparty.png
 
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I was hyped when I read Ultima VI. I immediately expected something in the graphical vein of Ultima VI, which always is a mistake (especially as it's specifically mentioned in the announcement here - which I overread). I have to admit I don't find the graphical style appealing. The background green outside seems too clean, the constant breathing animation too much, many of the props (trees, bushes etc.) don't really fit in their environment, the mix between the more "modern" appearance of fires/explosions/lighting system and the cruder pixel style doesn't seem to work together in creating a unity of style. For me it was exactly this unity of style that was one major part of Ultima. Anyway, I'll throw it in my wishlist, it's almost never a good idea to judge on first (visual) impression.
 
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Sin2x

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Dec 5, 2016
Messages
100
I was hyped when I read Ultima VI. I immediately expected something in the graphical vein of Ultima VI, which always is a mistake (especially as it's specifically mentioned in the announcement here - which I overread). I have to admit I don't find the graphical style appealing. The background green outside seems too clean, the constant breathing animation too much, many of the props (trees, bushes etc.) don't really fit in their environment, the mix between the more "modern" appearance of fires/explosions/lighting system and the cruder pixel style doesn't seem to work together in creating a unity of style. For me it was exactly this unity of style that was one major part of Ultima. Anyway, I'll throw it in my wishlist, it's almost never a good idea to judge on first (visual) impression.
The only thing Ultima about it is the Ultima-te disappointment.
 
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nlfortier

Esturia Games
Developer
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Apr 28, 2020
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128
This looks neat. The graphics look really polished and I love that they went with turn-based combat instead of real-time with pause. I love that Infinitron keeps sharing these indie gems.
 

Kruno

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I hope there is a ton of exploration. Games like this excel when you have many choices. Vogel's old games (Exile) are a prime example of this.
 

Jinn

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Daemongar

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Nov 21, 2010
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Codex Year of the Donut
The game looks like it would be a better game if they cleaned up the graphics and made it their own game. The angles are all wrong. As it stands, it looks like something made with custom tiles in a game maker tool.
 

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