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Game News Moonring is a free retro RPG inspired by the classic Ultima games and early roguelikes

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Tags: Fluttermind; Moonring



Moonring is a retro-inspired open-world, turn-based, tile RPG in the style of the classic Ultima games, but created from the ground up with modern design sensibilities.

The world's geography is hand-designed, but the deadly dungeons beneath the surface reconfigure each time you leave... or die.

Travel, trade, sneak, fight and sail the world of Caldera. Speak with the townsfolk, learn Caldera's secrets, and challenge the Archon for his throne... or even overthrow the Gods themselves!

Features:
- Large, hand-designed open world
- An infinite supply of dungeons generated using your character name
- Over 100 varied enemy types, from fodder to bosses
- 35 unique Gifts from the Gods, their usage changing with the moon phases
- Sailing, ship-to-ship combat and boarding
- A Dungeon Synth OST with over 50 tracks, all made using retro Mod Trackers!
- A hidden magic system and many other mysteries​
 

Ysaye

Arbiter
Joined
May 27, 2018
Messages
771
Location
Australia
Looks interesting, but two questions for the ether sphere:
(1) Say it is Ultima, but ultima doesn't use roguelike style combat?
(2) Why is it free?
 

ShaggyMoose

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Aug 26, 2017
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Australia
I like the art style; the overworld map at the start was gorgeous. Definitely feels more Rogue than Ultima though...
 

ShaggyMoose

Savant
Joined
Aug 26, 2017
Messages
584
Location
Australia
Play for a few minutes:
  • The graphics are simple but clean.
  • The interface is somewhat cluttered/complex, but efficient. The inventory screen looks like it might get out of hand later...
  • You can control the game with mouse or keyboard exclusively.
  • The view is definitely Ultima-esque and it uses keyword based chat.
  • Bump-based combat is efficient for simple melee.
  • It is a rogue-lite in that your game and the world state remain on death, but the dungeon you were in is reset and regenerated. Not sure how deep dungeons will get, so too early to tell if this will lead me to rage quit eventually... At least it has a "save and quit" option.
  • Only played through one dungeon, but I noticed a few interesting mechanics like yelling to attract an enemy to run into a spiderweb, then ganking it while it is helpless. Also, fire spreads!
 
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Eisen

Learned
Joined
Apr 21, 2020
Messages
576
Does it have permadeath?
I like the controls of a roguelike, top-view and grid-based combat, but nowadays i'm not a fan of permadeath.
 

ShaggyMoose

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Aug 26, 2017
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From what I understand, it does not have permadeath but I haven't tested the theory... The game is less than 100mb download, so I guess its easy enough to test. I don't want to chance throwing away my significant half hour investment. :-D

EDIT: Since I got massively ganked on the overworld map, I can answer the question; there is no permadeath. You reset to the last save point, which will be at a town.
 
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OttoQuitmarck

Educated
Joined
Aug 1, 2023
Messages
269
The game is quite fun and well-made for a free one. Movement could be quicker. Also you can't seem to push objects around like you can in Ultima, which is a shame. Still, fun little incline.
 

OttoQuitmarck

Educated
Joined
Aug 1, 2023
Messages
269
Am i the only one who doesn't like Ultima and RPG's "inspired" by it?
Yea Ultima games are a bit overrated. They were good for the time but they really don't hold up that well. But games inspired by it can be quite good, especially if they copy the environment interaction. Which this game sadly doesn't.
 

Grauken

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Mar 22, 2013
Messages
12,538
This is quite addictive and the mix of Ultima overworld and modernized mechanics plus roguelike dungeons is clever
 

ShaggyMoose

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Am i the only one who doesn't like Ultima and RPG's "inspired" by it?
Yea Ultima games are a bit overrated. They were good for the time but they really don't hold up that well. But games inspired by it can be quite good, especially if they copy the environment interaction. Which this game sadly doesn't.
It does have some interactions though; fire is bloody dangerous, different terrain has different effects/uses, some enemies have facings which can be exploited etc. Its definitely not as "dumb" as some Ultima-likes but doesn't have anywhere near the complexity of Rogue.
 

almondblight

Arcane
Joined
Aug 10, 2004
Messages
2,549
Am i the only one who doesn't like Ultima and RPG's "inspired" by it?

I've only tried IV, VII, and Savage Empire. Bounced pretty hard off of IV and VII, but Savage Empire seemed cool.

The Exile series seemed to at least be partially inspired by it, though, and all of those games are great.
 

OttoQuitmarck

Educated
Joined
Aug 1, 2023
Messages
269
Am i the only one who doesn't like Ultima and RPG's "inspired" by it?
Yea Ultima games are a bit overrated. They were good for the time but they really don't hold up that well. But games inspired by it can be quite good, especially if they copy the environment interaction. Which this game sadly doesn't.
It does have some interactions though; fire is bloody dangerous, different terrain has different effects/uses, some enemies have facings which can be exploited etc. Its definitely not as "dumb" as some Ultima-likes but doesn't have anywhere near the complexity of Rogue.
Yea apparently you can also interact with water to make yourself temporarily immune to fire, which is cool. I was more refering to the fact you can't push furniture around.
 

ShaggyMoose

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Yeah agreed on the furniture, just wanted to point out to others that the environments aren't completely static. You can make yourself wet at water and in rain to be fireproof for a bit. You can also use a water flask to put yourself out. Unfortunately, I ran out of water and burnt to death in the last dungeon.
:timetoburn:
 

Arthandas

Liturgist
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
1,353
Looks great but I don't know if I can enjoy a roguelike with no kind of permadeath. What's the point if you're just respawning after dying and there's no penalty for failure?
 

ShaggyMoose

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Aug 26, 2017
Messages
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Looks great but I don't know if I can enjoy a roguelike with no kind of permadeath. What's the point if you're just respawning after dying and there's no penalty for failure?
The penalty for failure is you lose all of the loot you gathered from the dungeon and have to start again, in a newly generated dungeon.

EDIT: Deaths on the overworld are also penalised; you only save in towns and ruins. I have been ganked on the road a few times and lost a lot of careful travel time. The game has hinted there are methods of fast travel, but they are limited and not immediately available.
 
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Arthandas

Liturgist
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
1,353
Looks great but I don't know if I can enjoy a roguelike with no kind of permadeath. What's the point if you're just respawning after dying and there's no penalty for failure?
The penalty for failure is you lose all of the loot you gathered from the dungeon and have to start again, in a newly generated dungeon.
Yeah, I've played it a little and it seems more like an adventure game than a real roguelike (and I'm not saying that's a bad thing), permadeath wouldn't be a good fit probably. I hope the dungeons are challenging at least.
 

Trash Player

Scholar
Joined
Jun 13, 2015
Messages
435
Very accessible UI yet still old school enough. No handholding but in-universe hints. Keyword convo system.
Limited character progression, gated by exploration and milestones. Virtue-like devotion system, optional bonus for conduct.
Combat unremarkable RL fare but reasonably lethal by the standard of a open world RPG.
Dungeons do wear me down a bit 8 hours in however, too repetitive. Enemy variety isn't that impressive either.
Loot is mostly randomly generated by zone danger level, along with a few guaranteed loot like plot coupons.
Still going to quest and explore until I become eventually bored in the next 20 hours. Great value for a free game.
 

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