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Sun 25 August 2019

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Sun 25 August 2019, 15:39:47

Tags: Cara Ellison; Hardsuit Labs; Paradox Interactive; Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2

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Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 had a minor presence at Gamescom this week. On Wednesday, IGN published a 28 minute gameplay video that everybody posted about, which was weird because it's the exact same demo they showed at E3. On Friday, Paradox's Florian Schwarzer showed up on IGN's stream, but unfortunately the interview was entirely in German. So not much out of Gamescom, but now there's a new dev diary on the game's official forums. This time it's by senior narrative designer Cara Ellison, who has penned a summary of the principles she's formulated for writing a Bloodlines sequel:

1. You are locked in the game with them
What is compelling about the original Bloodlines is that it is very interested in power relations encroaching on your ‘territory’ in a way that most RPGs are not. Most RPGs try to present you with systems that soup you up like a tanked-up space marine and expel you out into space to explode things and mess with civilizations and make your spaceship very shiny. Like a kind of settler model.

Bloodlines 1 and 2 are games that are much more interested in how its NPCs might fuck with you than how you might fuck with them. It is claustrophobic. As Watchmen’s Rorschach might say, you are locked in the game with them. You start the game already a political pawn in other people’s chess. Vampire relations in Santa Monica in Bloodlines 1, for example, were already a tense and volatile political mess before you started the game.

In Bloodlines 1 as well as in Bloodlines 2, every vampire you encounter in the game has been a vampire for longer than you. You are in their realm. You are not the hero of the tale, and neither are they. You are merely trying to make a mark on a world that got fucked up without you. And for characters that are weaker than you – mortals, for example – you have the ability to rope them into your nightmare, but what is certain is that there will be very little good outcome for anyone involved with a monster. Try to be ‘nice’, and it will backfire. Try to be ‘kind’, and you might have to be cruel. Try to help out, and you might help out the worst of the World Of Darkness. But what is certain is that this neo-noir set of characters is not going to give you a bunch of vampire powers and then let you do whatever you like. Someone created you for a reason; The Masquerade is all-encompassing. The characters in this neo-noir world are there to be a big, entertaining pain in your ass at every step. The original game - Bloodlines 1 – was the same way.

2. Choose Who You Hurt
In Bloodlines 1, and therefore Bloodlines 2, you cannot achieve anything without hurting people or making them angry. You can only choose who you hurt. You can choose between one vampire political reality, or another. Everything is seen through vampire eyes – when you’re immortal, you do not work on mortal time. The politics is long-term. You have to stay undead and stay powerful. And in order to do that, you have to start manipulating.

For example, if humans are dying out en masse, how will you feed? If the humans stop free movement from happening, where will you live, will your reality become more difficult? How do vampires use technology to manipulate their food supply? What’s the lowest effort way you can stay alive as a vampire? How can you stop humans from knowing that you exist… and yet keep them sweet on you so that you can feed on them easily? How do mortal politics interfere with your unlife? When the city bans sex work… is that good or bad for you and those you know? Does perpetuating mortal trauma make an undead existence easier… or harder to deal with? If you suck blood at a particular bloodshop, what happens when another vampire takes it over? Does what you were doing before the Embrace impact how people react to you now? Is there anything that…scares you as a vampire? And …can you make mortals more likely to turn up when you want by getting really good in bed?

3. Navigating the World of Darkness
We ask ourselves a lot of questions while writing and we try to give you a reactive world where you can figure out some of the answers to these questions. This means that whatever difficult choices we force you to make, the world will give you consequences that are always as equally interesting as each other. We try to open up every conversation so that you have a number of ways you can get through it – by negotiating, coercing, or seducing, for example. We also make bribery an option – even starting a fight or finding a way to avoid people is a viable way to get by. If you are a Malkavian, perhaps your options are more terrifying than usual. Or, you can merely ask a bunch of questions until you are forced to choose what to do.

A lot of our characters are assholes. A lot of people who exist in the real world are assholes. But just like in the real world, the way that characters in Bloodlines 2 talk about others provides a social fabric that gives you a better context and understanding of what that does to the world, what the consequences are, and how characters are affected by those attitudes and actions. No one character will be ‘just’ a category of person. If you laugh at a joke an asshole makes, it doesn’t make them any less an asshole who will screw you over at a moment’s notice. For example, in HBO’s Veep, we know that the characters are all some of the worst people we’ve ever seen. But what makes you understand that they are doing or saying something bad is that other people react to them in the way that they do. In our game, if you keep one asshole alive, maybe some other assholes will be really mad about it. I mean in the first Bloodlines, did you really, completely like Damsel? Or was there something naive about her? Was she just necessary for the fireworks to happen? Depending on who you hung out with, maybe you’d have a different perspective on her. Or maybe you’d be more impressed with what she does than what she says.

4. Unsanctioned Vampires
At the forefront of my mind in Bloodlines 2 is the crossover from being mortal to being a vampire. Around the time your character was created in an event called the Mass Embrace, a small number of other vampires were also created. Unlike you, they were abandoned and they did not get to choose who they were when they were Embraced. There was no character creator for them. Their lives were interrupted and they were made immortal, and all their relationships with the world were frozen in time. They are your brothers and sisters, in a way. And perhaps they are not having as privileged a time as you are. They had no guidance on the crossover. They had no support as to what was happening to them. They have to deal with their unlives as is. If you suddenly got thirsty for human blood and couldn’t stand sunlight, what exactly would you tell the people you know? How would you get through vampire puberty? And uh… what are the rules?

We let you figure out what to do with the messiest vampires. But I am not going to make it easy on you.
Next week is PAX West in Seattle, where Cara will be participating in a couple of panels related to Bloodlines 2. I'd be surprised if we don't see something new there.

There are 3 comments on Bloodlines 2 Dev Diary #4: Writing Bloodlines 2

Preview - posted by Infinitron on Sun 25 August 2019, 01:17:00

Tags: Brian Fargo; Dark Envoy; Event Horizon; Gato Salvaje; inXile Entertainment; The Waylanders; Wasteland 3

IGN seem to have served as the official streamers for this year's Gamescom, broadcasting daily with a German language stream in the noon and the regular American crew in the evening. Over the course of the week there were disappointingly few RPGs to be seen, despite the large number of such titles currently in development. Only on Friday did a few of them show up, starting with the appearance of Wasteland 3 in the German IGN stream. Brian Fargo and Tim Campbell don't speak German, so you may want to skip the parts where the host translates what they're saying:


Two smaller RPGs showed up in the English stream later during the day - the recently announced steampunkish turn-based tactical RPG Dark Envoy and the Dragon Age: Origins-inspired historical time travel RPG The Waylanders which was successfully crowdfunded last year. For both titles, it's an opportunity to premier their first significant gameplay footage. Also, the Waylanders guys have finally admitted that Chris Avellone is working for them.


In other news, there were a few more previews of the Wasteland 3 alpha build published over the week, at IGN, COGconnected, Expansive, and Gaming Target. But there's not much need for that when we can see the gameplay ourselves. I know there were more RPGs at Gamescom than just the few we saw in these public events. Hopefully we'll hear about them later on.

There are 8 comments on Gamescom 2019 Livestream: Wasteland 3, Dark Envoy, The Waylanders


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Fri 23 August 2019

Game News - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Fri 23 August 2019, 20:40:57

Tags: Heroic Fantasy Games; Knights of the Chalice

Knights of the Chalice - a turnbased cRPG based on the Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 OGL - has been released on Steam.

Knights of the Chalice is a 2D RPG with turn-based combat for Windows. The game uses the OGL 3.5, the set of rules at the root of Dungeons & Dragons 3.5, a role-playing game from Wizards of the Coast. Create a party of four adventurers, explore the Crimson Coast of Mindrel and fight valiantly against the evil Council of the Slaver Lords, domineering Giants, fiendish Demons and scheming Dragons.

Turn-based, party-based tactical combat similar to that found in the old Dark Sun Shattered Lands game made by SSI and in Troika's Temple of Elemental Evil.

User-friendly interface. Launch a charge, full-attack or coup-de-grace with a single click - the computer will automatically look for the best option available.

Well-developed artificial intelligence. Enemies act as a group and use special actions like Grapple or Charge and tactics like taking a five-foot step before casting Maximised Fireball.

Omnipresent help files and clear in-game feedback (a feature also found in Temple of Elemental Evil) on the results of each dice roll, saving throw, attack roll, modifiers, etc.

175 magic spells, most of which were taken from, or inspired by, Wizard of the Coast's open game content. The list of spells is available from the developer's website.

Craft your own weapons and apply enchantments like Wounding, Speed, Flaming Burst and Keen. The lists of weapon enchantments and feats are in the developer's website.

Multiple-choice dialogue allowing you to resolve situations in unexpected ways.

A large campaign largely inspired by the classic Dungeons & Dragons modules Scourge of the Slave Lords and Against the Giants.

Enjoy collecting 100 Steam achievements designed to challenge the best tacticians.​

There's a demo available if you want to try it out.

If you want to learn why you should play this game, look no further than Darth Roxor's review, from a time when he was still young and hadn't sold out yet.

There are 29 comments on Knights of the Chalice Released on Steam


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Thu 22 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 22 August 2019, 23:59:44

Tags: Bigben Interactive; Black Shamrock; Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory

Previews of Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory published earlier this month claimed that the game was due out on October 3rd. As expected, that date has now been officially confirmed by publisher Bigben Interactive. The announcement comes in the form of a dev diary video featuring various members of the development team from Black Shamrock, which seems to be the game's primary studio.



Lesquin, France, August 22, 2019 - As part of a special mission ordered by Friend Computer, our reporter was sent to Ireland to investigate Black Shamrock, the studio developing Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory, amidst rumours that one of the team could be guilty of treason…

As a Red clearance Troubleshooter, you have been granted access to the full video report. Many aspects of the game development were scrutinised: the passion for the Paranoia tone, the challenges of adapting a tabletop role-playing game into a video game, the combat system, the unique gameplay and, of course, the utmost happiness felt by everyone in the team!

But Citizen, Friend Computer noticed that one team member hesitated when asked. Don't forget, happiness is mandatory. Not being happy is tantamount to treason and traitors will be asked to report to the nearest extermination centre immediately.

Control a team of four Troubleshooters of dubious loyalty, who (mostly) obey orders from Friend Computer, a paranoid and irrational artificial intelligence. Inspired by classic CRPGs, the game is the first official adaptation of the cult role-playing game.

After checking with Friend Computer, we can confirm the game will release on 3 October 2019 on PC and later on consoles.
Bigben haven't officially announced the game's price yet, but apparently the console version is available for preorder on various websites for $30.

There are 4 comments on Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory confirmed for release on October 3rd


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Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 22 August 2019, 22:56:02

Tags: Beamdog; Neverwinter Nights; Neverwinter Nights: Tyrants of the Moonsea; Ossian Studios

When Atari cancelled the Neverwinter Nights premium module program back in 2006, there were several modules in development whose creators were forced to change their plans. One of these was Luke "Alazander" Scull's Tyrants of the Moonsea, which was released in an unfinished state on the Neverwinter Vault soon afterwards. Alazander would go on to join Ossian Studios, creators of the similarly cancelled Darkness over Daggerford, where he served as lead designer on Mysteries of Westgate and The Shadow Sun. Last year, an enhanced version of Darkness over Daggerford finally saw release as an official DLC for Beamdog's Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition. It makes sense that Ossian's next move would be to finish and release Tyrants of the Moonsea, but it was still quite a surprise when it suddenly showed up on Steam a few days ago. Here's its description:

Developed by Ossian Studios and based on the original module by Luke Scull, this new, enhanced version of Tyrants of the Moonsea vastly expands this former premium module by adding 70% more story and gameplay, as well as a large amount of new art and audio content.

The harsh frontier land known as the Moonsea is besieged by demons. A mysterious cult has arisen, bent on death and destruction. Amid the chaos, war is imminent between the powerful city-states and their tyrannical rulers. Accompanied by the dwarf merchant Madoc, you approach the town of Voonlar just as the worst snowstorm of the year hits. You soon discover that only you can prevent the total annihilation of the Moonsea at the hands of a legendary and ancient evil...

Explore the treacherous region of the Moonsea, including the infamous Zhentil Keep! Travel by foot and horse through the dark and mysterious lands of Cormanthor and Thar, and by ship across the pirate-infested waters, engaging in ship-to-ship combat. Encounter monstrous foes of unspeakable power in a high-level adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat. As the old Moonsea battle cry goes: "Dare... and beware!"

Features:
  • An expansion-sized high-level adventure with 20+ hours of gameplay
  • Use the world map to explore 18 areas in the Moonsea region including Zhentil Keep, Cormanthor, Thar, and prominent city-states.
  • Recruit from 5 different companions for your party
  • 5 new monsters to do battle with
  • 14 new character portraits
  • 35 minutes of inspiring new music including exhilarating combat tracks
  • 1,000 lines of new character VO
Buying the enhanced edition of Tyrants of the Moonsea helps to support Ossian Studios' goal of bringing you more Dungeons & Dragons adventures!​

You can grab Tyrants of the Moonsea on Steam for $10, with a 10% discount until next week. As with Darkness over Daggerford, the original unfinished version remains available for download at the Neverwinter Vault.

There are 54 comments on Cancelled NWN premium module Tyrants of the Moonsea completed and released by Ossian after 13 years

Wed 21 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Wed 21 August 2019, 22:01:14

Tags: inXile Entertainment; Wasteland 3

As promised earlier this month, the Wasteland 3 alpha was released to eligible backers today. The game finally has a Steam page now too. You've already seen the game's new trailer, so here's a batch of screenshots inXile released today:

[​IMG] [​IMG]
[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
The Fig update announcing the alpha release isn't too interesting, so I'll post an excerpt from a preview of the game by PCWorld instead. As mentioned earlier, the alpha is a combat-focused scenario pitting a four man ranger team (including Scotchmo!) and their mighty armored truck against the forces of one of the Patriarch's children, the psychotic Vic Buchanan AKA Victory. Your orders are to take him alive, which may require some finesse. The previewer isn't too interested in Wasteland 3's combat aspects, but he does manage to provide some insight into how its mechanics have changed compared to Wasteland 2.

Wasteland 2 veterans will notice some changes immediately. The biggest, and one that sends shock waves through myriad other systems, is a rework of Initiative. In Wasteland 2, Initiative not only governed how early a character would attack, but how often as well. This enabled some extremely broken builds, where one character might attack as many as three times for each turn an enemy received. Meanwhile, slower characters like Scotchmo might fire their weapon one time per fight.

In Wasteland 3, turns function more like a standard tactics game where one side attacks, then the other attacks, and repeat. Gut instinct? It’s a good and necessary change. It’s easier to flank enemies and to coordinate maneuvers between teammates, and probably easier for InXile to balance as well. You can even have one party member attack, then hop over to another, and then go back to the first to attack again. This opens up some neat possibilities.

On the other hand, Wasteland 2’s flexibility—that ability to completely break the game by exploiting the systems given—was in line with its retro leanings and (for me at least) part of the fun. I’m somewhat sad to see it go, at least in this one respect.

Some aspects, I won’t miss as much. Characters now share an inventory, which is a welcome change. No more need to allocate ammo or health packs to each character individually, as they’ll all draw from the same pool. And skill checks are now semi-automatic. There’s no need to right-click a door, then tell someone to unlock it. If it’s locked, the Ranger with the highest lockpicking skill will automatically move to the door and try to get it open.

Something is lost in the simplification, no doubt. I don’t know if it’s something necessary though. Wasteland 3 feels less like a time capsule from 20 years ago, and in a way that’s a shame. It’s more playable though, and if we agree that its strongest suit is the writing? Then there’s no real need to lament the loss of the more fiddly mechanics.

Plus, it still takes the opportunity to trip you up when it can. There was a great moment midway through the demo where the path led through a cage full of bears. I carefully moved my squad away from the gate, except Scotchmo and his trusty shotgun. The plan? Spring the gate, and then have Scotchmo hit them right between the eyes. I opened the gate and…

I’d forgotten to reload Scotchmo’s shotgun after the last encounter. Oops.

Scotchmo was pretty good-natured as he fumbled a few shells into the shotgun, and we came out of it relatively unscathed. Still, it’s great to see certain elements of Wasteland 2 have carried over intact. This is still a crunchy CRPG at heart, even if some of the rough edges have been smoothed over.
Also published today were two additional previews of Wasteland 3 at Polygon and Paste Magazine, plus an interview with inXile designer Tim Campbell over at Gamereactor. The game's alpha tiers had several thousand backers back in 2016, so there should be a steady stream of gameplay videos on YouTube and Twitch. It looks pretty decent - perhaps inXile should consider offering the alpha for sale again on their preorder site.

There are 12 comments on Wasteland 3 Fig Update #32: Backer Alpha Released

Game News - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Wed 21 August 2019, 09:40:46

Tags: Heroic Fantasy Games; Knights of the Chalice; Knights of the Chalice 2

Other than the impending Steam release of KotC 1 this Friday the big news is that Pierre will be expanding the KotC2 engine to support animated sprites instead of only the tokens you've seen so far.

Dear video game news providers and influencers,

Here is the latest update on the status of Knights of the Chalice and KotC 2. As previously indicated, KotC 1 is scheduled to be launched on the Steam platform this Friday (23 August). The Steam version of the game's free demo / tutorial will be released around the same time. The game's store page on Steam can be found at https://store.steampowered.com/app/1083760/Knights_of_the_Chalice/.

On the occasion of the Steam launch, I recently updated the game to version 1.34. The new version fixes a number of bugs and gameplay issues and it adds the option to launch the demo / tutorial from the full game (simply click 'Demo').

Knights of the Chalice is a party-based RPG with turn-based combat for Windows. KotC 1 uses the OGL 3.5, the ruleset at the root of Dungeons and Dragons 3.5. In KotC 1, create four Adventurers and embark on a bold journey to save the Land from Slavers, Demons, Dragons and other Evil Forces, as your Heroic Party progresses all the way from level 1 to level 20.

KotC 1 Features:

  • Turn-based, party-based tactical combat similar to that found in the old Dark Sun Shattered Lands game made by SSI and in Troika's Temple of Elemental Evil.
  • User-friendly interface. Launch a charge, full-attack or coup-de-grace with a single click - the computer will automatically look for the best option available.
  • Well-developed artificial intelligence. Enemies act as a group and use special actions like Grapple or Charge and tactics like taking a five-foot step before casting Maximised Fireball.
  • Omnipresent help files and clear in-game feedback (a feature also found in Temple of Elemental Evil) on the results of each dice roll, saving throw, attack roll, modifiers, etc.
  • 175 magic spells, most of which were taken from, or inspired by, Wizard of the Coast's open game content. The list of spells is available from http://www.heroicfantasygames.com/ListofSpells.htm.
  • Craft your own weapons and apply enchantments like Wounding, Speed, Flaming Burst and Keen. The lists of weapon enchantments and feats can be found on the developer's website.
  • Multiple-choice dialogue allowing you to resolve situations in unexpected ways.
  • A large campaign largely inspired by the classic Dungeons & Dragons modules Scourge of the Slave Lords and Against the Giants.
  • Enjoy collecting 100 Steam achievements designed to challenge the best tacticians.
  • Free Demo / Tutorial: this is a unique adventure. The Steam version of the free demo has 17 achievements.
Concerning the sequel, Knights of the Chalice 2, I recently completed a website update that will be needed to send the game to Kickstarter backers. Once I finish testing the website update, I'll be able to focus on the Kickstarter page. Once that's done, I will inform you about the Kickstarter launch date. The Kickstarter video can be found at https://youtu.be/P7D5mhcLQH0.

The upcoming Kickstarter campaign will support the creation of future KotC 2 adventure modules. The first KotC 2 adventure module, Augury of Chaos, and the KotC 2 module and campaign editor will be released to backers as soon as the campaign ends. In KotC 2: Augury of Chaos, your Heroic Party confronts a group of Evil Fanatics allied with various Demons and Fiendish Dragons. Following the Kickstarter, the game is planned to be released on the developer's website, http://www.heroicfantasygames.com, and on Steam. A Mac OS version is also likely to be released.

In response to player feedback about the token-based graphics style of KotC 2, I am planning to expand the engine so that it will allow the use of animated sprites in future adventures modules. The idea here is to allow both tokens and animated sprites to be used for the game's player characters, NPCs and monsters. A number of people have expressed a preference for the sprite-based graphics style employed in KotC 1.

KotC 2 Features:

  • Turn-based, party-based tactical combat similar to that found in the old Dark Sun Shattered Lands game made by SSI and in Troika's Temple of Elemental Evil.
  • User-friendly interface. Launch a charge, full-attack or coup-de-grace with a single click - the computer will automatically look for the best option available. Out of combat, move the party with a single click or by keeping the mouse button pushed. Also see the KotC 1 How to Play webpage for more information.
  • A well-developed artificial intelligence. Enemies act as a group and can use special actions like Grapple or Charge and tactics like taking a Five-Foot step before casting Maximised Fireball.
  • Omnipresent help files and clear in-game feedback (a feature also found in Temple of Elemental Evil) on the results of each dice roll, saving throw, attack roll, modifiers and so on.
  • More than 700 Spells and Psionic Powers (see the list of Wizard spells). The game also features 22 Classes, 10 Races, 36 Subraces, 478 Feats, 41 Cleric Domains, 71 Weapon enchantments and 51 Armour and Shield enchantments. Click here for more information about the Classes, Feats and other topics.
  • With the right materials and sufficient gold and experience points, craft your own weapons and apply enchantments like Wounding, Speed, Flaming Burst and Keen (see the complete list).
  • Multiple-choice dialogue options offering real choices and real in-game consequences to the player. Use your party's unique skills and consider your own preferences and playing style in order to resolve situations in the most suitable manner.
  • Enjoy a variety of engrossing puzzles and riddles. Use your intuition and logical thinking to decrypt mysterious coded messages. The game's cryptography interface, inspired by Broken Sword Shadow of the Templars, makes decoding a captivating activity. Do not worry about the difficulty of puzzles and riddles though, as the game frequently provides Hints designed to help you resolve this type of challenge.
  • KotC 2 Augury of Chaos allows you to create your level-1 characters and take them all the way to level 21 or so. There is no limit on character level.
  • Use the powerful integrated toolset to create new modules and campaigns easily. Easily swap monster tokens or create new ones. Create new monsters, new dialogues and new maps easily.
  • Enjoy fast Saved-Game loading and saving and various game options designed to accelerate gameplay. Enjoy various convenience features, such as the Saved-Game preview image display, Tab key press to highlight objects that may be interacted with, or the Inventory Screen highlighting of spell scrolls that may be learned by a character.
Thank you for reading!

Best regards, Pierre Begue​

Modders can now fix it.

There are 21 comments on Impending KoTC 1 Steam Release on August 23rd plus surprise KotC2 plans

Mon 19 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Mon 19 August 2019, 18:39:50

Tags: CD Projekt; Cyberpunk 2077; Hardsuit Labs; inXile Entertainment; Paradox Interactive; Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2; Wasteland 3

After the surprising number of RPGs that showed up at E3 earlier this year, one might have expected Gamescom to have an even greater RPG presence. But judging by the nominees for best roleplaying game at Gamescom - Wasteland 3 and two JRPGs - that may not have turned out to be the case. Indeed, Wasteland 3 was the only RPG of interest to appear at Microsoft's Inside Xbox Gamescom event today. inXile appear to have taken criticisms of their E3 trailer to heart and produced a much more serious one this time. It's narrated by the Patriarch, the elderly warlord that has invited the Rangers to Colorado to help settle his succession dispute. This is our first real look at Wasteland 3's user interface, including a glimpse of the game's character screen at 1:18. It appears that the character system has been significantly altered, including what may be some sort of character class implementation. We won't have to wait long to find out what that's about, since the alpha comes out in two days.


There isn't much to report about what happened during the rest of the day. I was hoping Baldur's Gate 3 would make another appearance at Google's Stadia Connect presentation, but instead all we got a was a very brief Cyberpunk 2077 trailer which appears to contains a few snippets from the gameplay video that's supposed to be coming out in the next couple of weeks, along with a slightly longer dev diary video. Another thing I could mention is the brief Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 trailer published by Paradox earlier today, which announces support for NVIDIA's RTX ray tracing technology, with a voice over by the Toreador lady from the original announcement trailer.


As for the Gamescom opening event itself, this year hosted by the ever-hustling Geoff Keighley, it was a complete waste of time. But hey, at least Wasteland 3 won that best RPG award. We'll see what else pops up during the rest of the week.

There are 26 comments on Gamescom 2019: Wasteland 3, Cyberpunk 2077, Bloodlines 2

Sat 17 August 2019

Preview - posted by Infinitron on Sat 17 August 2019, 23:59:07

Tags: Black Shamrock; Cyanide Studio; Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory

Rock Paper Shotgun uploaded a 28 minute video preview of Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory to their YouTube channel a few days ago. Unlike the IGN gameplay video from June, this time whoever was playing took his time, offering us a chance to actually read the dialogue and observe some of the game's less obvious mechanics. In this mission, Friend Computer tasks the player's team with hunting down a secret society of traitorous vending machine worshippers. It seems to be a bit more varied than the mission we saw in June. Rock Paper Shotgun's previewer narrates the video and points out interesting aspects, such as the damage immunity system determined by the player's color clearance level, various points in the mission where there are multiple solutions to obstacles the team encounters, a loot-stealing cleanup droid that the player can attempt to outrun during combat, and the many ways that the player can find himself being accused of treason.


There were a couple of text-based previews of Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory published recently as well, at Den of Geek and Hardcore Gamer. Oddly, both Rock Paper Shotgun and Den of Geek claim that the game will be out in October, the latter even specifically saying October 3rd, but this has yet to be formally announced by the developers. They're going to be at Gamescom this week, so I guess it'll happen then.

There are 22 comments on Paranoia: Happiness is Mandatory Gameplay Preview at Rock Paper Shotgun

Thu 15 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 15 August 2019, 00:44:24

Tags: inXile Entertainment; Krome Studios; The Bard's Tale; The Bard's Tale II: The Destiny Knight; The Bard's Tale III: Thief of Fate; Wasteland

Krome Studios' remaster of The Bard's Tale Trilogy was unexpectedly one of the coolest RPG releases of the past year. Thanks to Microsoft's acquisition of inXile, they've been able to keep on supporting it for longer than anybody would have expected. Of course, that comes with the price of porting the game to Xbox and the Microsoft Store, but the new patch Krome released yesterday can be enjoyed by everybody. Its major features include multiple language support, new portraits, an in-game manual and bestiary, new tilesets, visual effects and more. The full patch notes are available here. You can catch a glimpse of some of those features in the game's new launch trailer:


I mentioned it in a previous newspost, but this is a good opportunity to reiterate that Krome's Wasteland 30th Anniversary Edition remaster was confirmed for release in Q4 2019 the other week. inXile's community manager shared these two screenshots of it on Reddit:

[​IMG] [​IMG]

As for Wasteland 3, today inXile announced that they've begun sending out alpha keys to eligible backers, although it won't be downloadable until August 21st. We won't have to wait quite that long to see some gameplay however, because inXile plan to unveil a new trailer on August 19th, during Microsoft's Inside Xbox show at Gamescom.

There are 38 comments on Bard's Tale Trilogy remaster gets major update, Wasteland remaster coming in Q4 2019

Mon 12 August 2019

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Mon 12 August 2019, 23:30:56

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

Paradox and Hardsuit have published another Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 dev diary over at the game's official forum, rather sooner than anticipated. This time the author is lead UI/UX designer Rachel Leiker, who describes how Hardsuit adapted certain aspects of the latest edition of the Vampire: The Masquerade tabletop ruleset. It's sort of a recap of some things she mentioned in an interview session with IGN last week, I think. Here's an excerpt:

Rachel Leiker from Hardsuit Labs here to bring you some tasty treats about the development of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2! Today I’d like to speak to something we get asked quite frequently – How do you translate a tabletop RPG into a first-person video game? Well, it takes a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. Mostly blood. Actually, it’s pretty much all blood.

When we first began work on Bloodlines 2, Vampire: the Masquerade Edition 5th (V5), the latest tabletop version of the game, was also in development. We were able to work closely with the V5 team to co-develop a lot of the systems you see in both games. The process was very interesting from a developer perspective because we wanted to maintain the tone and freeform nature of the TTRPG (tabletop RPG), but there were many challenges to get it to work on a digital platform.

The first Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines was a very true and accurate representation of the pen and paper version at that time. Many of the systems and designs were direct translations pulled from the core rulebook. For Bloodlines 2 we were less interested in a one-to-one implementation of systems in the tabletop version and more interested in what lies at the core of those mechanics – Being a Vampire.

Ka’ai outlined it perfectly in his previous post about the design pillars - there should always be a sense of supernatural power. How this is expressed mechanically is up for interpretation. We worked on really getting down to the nitty gritty of what that means and then set out to build it in a digital format.

One of the first things we worked on with the V5 team was Resonance, created to emphasize the “you are what you eat” part of feeding. Blood is great as a resource, but Resonance incentivizes feeding as more than just Hunger management and makes it more strategic.

Certain types of Resonance give certain benefits and buffs in both games and is a huge part of the hunting and feeding cycle. But finding and feeding on specific Resonances in V5 is a fundamentally different experience than in Bloodlines 2, and for very good reasons.

In the tabletop game, Resonance type can be determined by a skill check against a character Advantage or by physically tasting the blood. There are 4 types of Resonance (for humans...) and 3 levels of strength depending on the victim’s emotional state (Temperament). An amount of Resonance may be gained via feeding, in the cases where there is an extreme amount of Resonance, a Dyscrasia, or clot, is formed. This Dyscrasia acts as an immediate buff to the Vampire and is determined by the storyteller to serve specific needs (I’m simplifying a lot here, if you’d like more information, check out p.227 in the V5 corebook). There is a lot of flexibility and on-the-fly numbers rolling for the tabletop version, which works well for that format, but can be cumbersome when applied to a video game.

In Bloodlines 2, our Resonance system is expanded to 5 types and several different levels of strength. Delirium, Desire, Fear, Pain, and Rage are all emotions that can be discovered and devoured in the game and act as a secondary XP to unlock and activate Resonance-specific buffs, or Merits. The Resonance and Merits in Bloodlines 2 are more rigid in their implementation, but they allow players to quickly hunt for and manage the resource throughout the game.

Another example of applying tabletop systems in a video game world are the Thinblood disciplines developed for Bloodlines 2. We chose the playable Clans in the game because they most closely resembled typical player archetypes – Brujah = Fighter, Tremere = Warlock, Malkavian = Paladin (just kidding, Bard) - they are familiar enough that most players will immediately identify with one Clan based on their playstyle even if they are not familiar with Vampire: The Masquerade. Thinbloods were something of a challenge because at the beginning of the game players don’t choose to become a Thinblood, it is foisted upon them and discovering why is the crux of the story. We had to somehow give players some say in their situation in the form of Thinblood Disciplines.

The three Thinblood Disciplines – Chiropteran (Affinity to Bats), Nebulation (Mist Form), and Mentalism (Telekinesis) have mostly traversal and defensive applications. Thinblood Alchemy in V5 is much the same way – Thinbloods are at the very very bottom of the food chain, so survival is the number one priority. We maintain the core feeling of what it means to be a Thinblood and use those powers but make it more video game friendly by expressing it in familiar ways. Who doesn’t want to glide across the Seattle skyline, travel as mist with the wind, and move objects without touching them?
Next stop for Bloodlines 2 is Gamescom and PAX West, I guess.

There are 12 comments on Bloodlines 2 Dev Diary #3: Tabletop to Desktop - Vampire: The Masquerade V5 and Bloodlines 2

Fri 9 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 9 August 2019, 17:00:39

Tags: The Boar Studio; Titan Outpost

Last year we posted about Titan Outpost, a combat-free hard sci-fi isometric RPG created by veteran Codex poster Frank "MF" de Boer and set in a mining outpost on the sixth moon of Saturn. Titan Outpost's Steam page was launched in December and in May MF produced a cinematic trailer, informing us that release was imminent. The game was actually supposed to come out on August 1st but suffered an unexpected delay, which is probably for the best considering how many other titles were released that day. It's finally out today, so here's the latest & greatest version of the trailer and an excerpt from MF's release announcement:



Titan Outpost, our first RPG, is now available. Curious? Stick around.

What is Titan Outpost?


It is an RPG with survival, base building and adventure elements set on Titan, the 6th moon of Saturn. It is traditional, true to PnP roots and old-school in some ways, and innovative in others.

How does it work?


The dialogue and negotiation systems, the temperature-based survival aspects, the base construction and the world map all feature gameplay that is either completely unique or a combination of tried-and-true things that have never been tied together before in this way.

At the core is the game’s character system. Most RPGs focus on combat and combat related skills, but Titan Outpost is different. Your character sheet contains ‘science’, ‘construction’, ‘negotiation’, ‘exploration’ and ‘hacking’ skills, for example. You can gain experience points, level up and increase these skills like in any other RPG, but the way they affect what is happening in the game world is different.

You know how, when you talk to people in an RPG, it is always the same tree-based conversation? You ask a question, and the NPC gives you an answer. In Titan Outpost, you’ll feel right at home if you like this sort of thing, but whenever you start negotiating, it becomes more involved. You can interject with leverage, you can change the goal of your conversation, you can select pushy responses or backpedal and you can influence the dialogue in other ways. You can finally cover the flanks in a battle of words instead of always taking it head on with a couple of options.

Getting around on Titan is difficult. The average surface temperature is −179 °C (−290 °F), so you drive around in a heavily isolated and heated rover, and when you absolutely have to traverse anywhere on foot, you do so in a specialized suit. Time is the currency here: Every minute spent outside drains your suit's charge. Limited nutrition, your oxygen supply and other elements combine to provide a tense survival atmosphere.

You can expand the Outpost as you would in a base builder game, with resource management and a top-down interface. Your character skills partly determine how you can go about this. You can be a curious scientist, a savvy entrepreneur, a ruthless ecowarrior, a smooth-talking diplomat, a stoic engineer, an intrepid explorer or anything in between.
The announcement is quite thorough and descriptive, so you should definitely read the entire thing. If you like what you see, Titan Outpost is available on Steam now for $25.

There are 65 comments on Titan Outpost Released

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 9 August 2019, 00:44:33

Tags: Anshar Studios; Gamedec

Has Poland quietly turned into an isometric RPG powerhouse? We had Seven from Fool's Theory, Tower of Time and the upcoming Dark Envoy from Event Horizon, and now we've got Gamedec from Anshar Studios (a developer we'd never have heard of if they hadn't recently assisted Larian with creating some Divinity: Original Sin 2 free DLC). Gamedec is an "adaptive cyberpunk isometric RPG" based on a long-running series of Polish novels by one Marcin Przybyłek. It's set in 22th century Warsaw City, where much of the population now spend their lives inhabiting MMO-like virtual worlds. The detectives who deal with the unique crimes committed in these virtual realities are called Gamedecs, and you play as one of them. Here's the announcement trailer and press release:



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – August 8th, Katowice, Poland.

It’s Warsaw City in the 22nd century, and thanks to the existence of virtual worlds, "reality" is a relative concept, and "life" and "death" have many meanings. New worlds, however, give rise to new problems. Desire, jealousy, greed, and lust for power are ever present. Many things have changed, but human nature is not one of them. That’s why society in the 22nd century needs Gamedecs – detectives who handle frauds, crimes, and conspiracies committed in virtual worlds. Child slavery in F2P games, the suicide of a professional player – cases like that are what they deal with on a daily basis. In the new Anshar Studios game, the player becomes one of these detectives.


Watch the Gamedec Announcement Trailer HERE to see what awaits you in this futuristic and dystopian world.

You can already add the game to your Steam Wishlist (https://store.steampowered.com/app/917720/Gamedec/), not to miss any updates on its ongoing development.

A special, early version of the game will be premiered at Gamescom, while at PAX West in Seattle, a game demo will be made available to guests of the event. And if you’re heading to Cologne and would like to check out a hands-off demo at Gamescom, you’ll be able to meet the developers in the Business Area, Hall 4.1, Booth A-071G (Indie Games Poland).

In Gamedec, decisions are important, and the game world constantly adapts to them and to the hero, who changes as the story progresses. The consequences of choices made, like in “real” life, can be immediate, long-term, or hidden - the latter most often surfacing at unexpected moments. Regardless of the decisions made, however, the game always remains neutral towards them. It’s up to the player to evaluate them, bearing in mind the saying “you are the sum of your choices.”

The studio’s new game returns to the foundations of the RPG genre by adding Deduction, Codex, and Aspects mechanics to allow for complex discussions, as the players create or expose networks of intrigues and conspiracies, while discovering unusual relationships between virtual worlds. Gamedec’s paper-based RPG mechanics give players the freedom to approach things from multiple perspectives, rather than finding a single solution - the choice is ultimately theirs.

Gamedec is currently under development. The game is planned to be released in 2020.

More information about the game can be found on the game’s official website.
You may have noticed that the press release carefully avoids any mention of the game's combat system. Anshar's community manager isn't talking either. Some people have suggested that perhaps it doesn't have a combat system, like Disco Elysium. Well, we'll find out soon enough.

There are 28 comments on Gamedec is an upcoming isometric cyberpunk RPG from Poland where you play a virtual world detective

Tue 6 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Tue 6 August 2019, 19:28:06

Tags: Dark Envoy; Event Horizon

Last year, a Polish indie studio by the name of Event Horizon released a real-time-with-pause isometric dungeon crawler called Tower of Time. That's not the kind of thing you'd think the Codex would be interested in, but apparently it was quite good. In fact, it did well enough that they're now making another isometric tactical RPG, and this time it's turn-based so we'll give it our full attention. The game is called Dark Envoy, and it's described by the developers as a "non-linear RPG with free world exploration" inspired by Divinity, XCOM and Dragon Age. It's set in a steampunk-flavored fantasy world where technology clashes with magic. Here's the announcement trailer and an excerpt from the game's Steam page:



Dark Envoy is a non-linear RPG inspired by the likes of the Divinity series, XCOM, FTL, Mass Effect, and Dragon Age to offer free world exploration with an emphasis on tactical combat layered with lore and strategy. A continuation of Event Horizon’s attempt, which began with the studio’s debut title Tower of Time, to shatter long-standing RPG tropes and to create something unique in the process.

Explore the world using your Skyship, it is your base of operations after all. Hunt for mythical locations, and procedurally generated dungeons with optional tactical objectives. Choose wisely where to travel however, as the world map adjusts with the passing of in-game time. Locations will randomly respawn, becoming progressively more challenging to travel for you and your party.

Features
  • Non-linear RPG with turn-based combat accompanied by a real time pre-combat phase where tactics and party power are equally important.
  • Player choices impact the world: it can be destroyed or saved, and the stories that unfold will lead to multiple endings reflecting the characters’ personalities and decisions.
  • Co-written by Michael Chatfield, an Amazon Top 100 Science Fiction / Fantasy writer (specializing in litRPG genre).
  • 15 unique character classes to discover - with the ability to mix skill trees - including some rare classes which can only be found in remote locations or through chained quests.
  • New RPG system, promoting experimentation and requiring frequent adaptation to the new challenges.
  • Can be played solo, two player co-op, as well as a unique mode called Player vs World where Player 2 acts as the final boss seeking to destroy Player 1 before he/she becomes too powerful.
  • High-replayability factor due to large pool of quests, local, and world events. One cannot uncover all of the content in a single playthrough.
Event Horizon plan to release Dark Envoy sometime in the second half of 2020, and they're going to be at Gamescom later this month with a combat demo. For additional details and future updates, check out the game's official website.

There are 17 comments on Dark Envoy is a steampunkish non-linear turn-based tactical RPG from the makers of Tower of Time

Mon 5 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Mon 5 August 2019, 23:11:48

Tags: inXile Entertainment; Wasteland 3

We learned back in June that the Wasteland 3 backer alpha would be out in August. Today, a new Fig update informs us that the exact date of its release is August 21st. The alpha build will consist of a combat-focused scenario from the middle of the game, pitting a team of high-level Rangers against one of the Patriarch's heirs. Vehicles will be in, but the perk and skill menus are still out. Here's the description, but first a new screenshot of a scene from the game's world map:

[​IMG]

For Alpha Eyes Only

The Wasteland 3 Alpha is closer than ever, and those of you who have pledged at the First Access ($75) or higher tier (or added the Alpha as an add-on) will soon be getting hands-on with the game. Come August 21 you’ll be setting foot in the frozen post-apocalyptic Colorado for the first time.

This is an early preview, so we want to get in a few disclaimers. This demo is firmly an Alpha, so every single piece of the game you’ll see and play will very much be a work in progress. While we’re going to do our best to provide a stable build, you should expect some amount of crashes, performance drops, compatibility issues, etc. to be possible. That’s part of what we’re testing and getting your feedback on. Speaking of which, stay tuned for official feedback and reporting methods.

The Alpha is combat-focused, and revolves around the last leg of your journey to deal with one of the Patriarch’s children, lovingly known as the Psychopath. At this point in the game you’re higher level, and are taking the last few steps to deal with him in the mountain town of Aspen—however you choose to do that. You’ll get to experience most of the systems related to combat, including the player vehicle. We will have some things purposely blocked off, like the Perk and Skill menus, and multiplayer, which aren’t quite ready to see just yet.

While the full game will include the deep narrative choices, colorful characters, and all of the broad RPG systems and experiences you know and love in Wasteland, our goal with the Alpha is to get early testing and feedback on combat basics and a sense of how players are tackling the game in terms of its level designs and available systems, and we’re hoping you put it through its paces.

And Everyone Else

For many of you who didn’t back at the Alpha tiers, you’ll be looking forward to Early Access, which is the second demo we’ll have before launch. Alpha and Early Access will both use the same Steam entry (the Alpha will be replaced with the Early Access demo), so Alpha users you’ll only need to redeem one key to play both, and Early Access players you’ll get your keys later on when we get closer to that point. If you’re looking to get the full game on GOG, no worries, while the Alpha and Early Access will be run on Steam, your final product choice won’t be impacted.

Of course, Alpha players can take screenshots, videos, livestream, etc. and everyone can enjoy. Player’s choice, but based on past experience, you’ll probably want to keep an eye on Twitch and Youtube. Our fans have traditionally enjoyed sharing their experiences and impressions.
In related news, on Friday inXile announced that Krome Studios' Wasteland 1 remaster was on schedule for release in Q4 this year. Community manager Paul Marzagalli shared a couple of new screenshots of it on Reddit, joining the screenshot Brian Fargo tweeted back in June. Hopefully we'll see some gameplay of that soon too.

There are 6 comments on Wasteland 3 Fig Update #30: Backer Alpha releasing on August 21st

Game News - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Mon 5 August 2019, 10:18:43

Tags: Heroic Fantasy Games; Knights of the Chalice; Knights of the Chalice 2

I'm happy to announce that Knights of the Chalice will be released on Steam soon. It is finally happening after all these years. The Steam store page is already up, see here. That also means the Kickstarter campaign for KotC 2 will be coming, uhh, eventually.

Knights of the Chalice is a party-based RPG with turn-based combat for Windows. KotC 1 uses the OGL 3.5, the ruleset at the root of Dungeons and Dragons 3.5. In KotC 1, create four Adventurers and embark on a bold journey to save the Land from Slavers, Demons, Dragons and other Evil Forces, as your Heroic Party progresses all the way from level 1 to level 20.

A Kickstarter campaign is still planned for the future adventure modules of KotC 2. The first KotC 2 adventure module, Augury of Chaos, and the KotC 2 module and campaign editor will be released to backers as soon as the campaign ends. In KotC 2: Augury of Chaos, your Heroic Party confronts a group of Evil Fanatics allied with various Demons and Fiendish Dragons. Thank you for reading!

Best regards, Pierre Begue

There are 39 comments on Knights of the Chalice - Steam Release on 23rd August

Sun 4 August 2019

Community - posted by felipepepe on Sun 4 August 2019, 23:54:41


Greetings traveler. I hope your mouse wheel / PgDown key are in good shape, because is this one MASSIVE piece of content!

About 5 years ago we made a voting to determine the Top RPGs of all time. We had 234 codexers voting on 223 RPGs. After we got the ranking, we asked people to write why short reviews for each title. That was the RPG Codex Top 70 PC RPGs, one of my favorite things of the Codex and what later led to the CRPG Book.

But new games are released every day now, and we decided to make an updated version, with the same rules. This time 361 codexers voted on 278 RPGs. And instead of a Top 70, we made a Top 101! With reviews!

[​IMG]

As with the previous one, the rankings after the Top 20-30 are not as important, this should really seen as a list of interesting games to try out. Few people will enjoy niche titles like Elminage Gothic or Tales of Maj'Eyal, but those that do will absolutely love them.

You can check the full results of the voting HERE (plus a comparison with the previous poll), or just scroll down to start reading! OBS: Some entries share the same number, that's because they were tied in the voting.

Thanks to everyone who voted and wrote reviews, have a good reading!
:love:

Read the full article: The RPG Codex's Top 101 PC RPGs (With User Reviews!)

There are 265 comments on The RPG Codex's Top 101 PC RPGs (With User Reviews!)

Fri 2 August 2019

Preview - posted by Infinitron on Fri 2 August 2019, 19:31:22

Tags: Brian Heins; Carrie Patel; Charles Staples; Matthew Singh; Obsidian Entertainment; The Outer Worlds

Last month we became aware that several Obsidian developers had embarked on an extensive press tour to promote The Outer Worlds. The results of that tour made themselves known today in a spectacular fashion, in what must be the largest press blast I've ever seen for any Obsidian title since I began posting front page news. That includes previews, interviews and multiple hours of new gameplay footage. The demo most of the previewers got to play was set on the planet of Monarch (which we also saw at E3 back in June) and a few hours after the videos were published Obsidian uploaded their own official version. Meanwhile, the PlayStation folks got an exclusive look at one of the game's first areas, the town of Edgewater on Terra 2. So I'll post one of each:


And here's a list of today's many previews and interviews:


Yeah, it's crazy. I haven't had time to read or watch much of this yet, but one thing worth noting is that there are no new companions revealed here. On the other hand, I believe this is the first time we've gotten to see more than a quick glimpse of Parvati, so that's something.

There are 57 comments on The Outer Worlds August Bonanza - Gameplay Footage, Previews and Interviews

Thu 1 August 2019

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 1 August 2019, 23:32:04

Tags: Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown; Silver Lemur Games

The final release of the day is Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown, the Might & Magic-inspired retro blobber which came out on Early Access just four months ago. There were plenty of updates in between but there's no new launch trailer, so I'll just post the game's description here:

Inspiration:
The game is a classic western RPG inspired by the games from the 90s. Basically, it’s the kind of game I personally find missing nowadays. Light, fairy tale, epic, heroic and slightly humorous. One that does not take tons of hours to complete or require endless grind to progress. Something that caters to players like me who don’t have tons of hours to beat one game but still like to play and have a sort of nostalgia for the way games were made in the old days.

It was inspired by Dungeon Master, Eye of The Beholder 2, Might & Magic 3-5, Crystals of Arborea (a not so well known prequel to Ishar series), GoldBox series (Champions of Krynn, Dark Queen of Krynn, etc).

Core Design Choices:

1) Classic, 90 degree rotation, FPP, turn-based, tile movement RPG.
2) Party-based (7 heroes, either predefined or manually assembled upon new game).
3) Open world with a big overworld to explore.
4) Fast paced combat. Quick travel. Easy inventory management. No grind.
5) Light, fairy tale like fantasy, epic story about heroes on a noble quest.

Mechanics:

Mechanically it’s 100% turn based (so you can go and make tea in the middle of a fight) with grid movement and 90 degree rotation. All this is very fast paced, both combat and travel is really fast. The goal was to cut down the boring parts and flesh out the fun parts.
Overall, the mechanics are pretty traditional and straightforward with modern additions like weightless bag combined with equipment encumbrance system.

World and Storyline:

Storyline is a fairy tale, mythical heroic fantasy. You are the good guys on a quest to fight the forces of evil. The world is non linear, with very few locked areas. You basically can go anywhere and do things in different order. In addition you can choose a different set of quests to finish the game (but those are not mutually exclusive, so you can finish all quests if you like). It’s more world driven than story driven. The priority was to make the world feel alive and let you explore it as you wish than follow a linear list of quests.

The game starts when the royal wizard finds out about an old crown that belonged to the royal family for generations. Yet, strangely no one ever heard about the crown and there was just a single mention of it in the royal annals. Upon further study he discovered that there has been cast a powerful spell of forgetfulness of unknown origin which caused everyone in the whole land to forget the crown ever existed. Without knowing who or why someone went to such trouble to conceal the existence of the crown he decided to investigate it. He summoned a party of noble heroes and tasked them with finding whereabouts of the mysterious crown and the origin of the spell.

FAQ:
Q: How long it takes to beat the game?
A: According to Early Access players it can take between 20 and 50 hours to finish the game (I estimate a typical playthrough would be 25-40 hours for most players).

Q: Can I create party members or are they predefined?
A: Yes, you can create all party members upon start if you wish (there is also a quick start option).​

Legends of Amberland can be yours for $20 over at Steam, with a 10% launch discount until next week. Details about the game's 1.00 update are available here.

There are 11 comments on Legends of Amberland Released

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Thu 1 August 2019, 20:57:30

Tags: ChaosForge; Jupiter Hell

Today's next release is Jupiter Hell. The DoomRL successor from creator Kornel Kisielewicz was announced way back in 2013, but development appears to have entered high gear only in 2016 when it was successfully Kickstarted to the tune of $85k. Like many roguelikes, the game is beginning its life as an Early Access title. The launch trailer is something that has to be seen, especially the part near the end. I'll post it here along with the Early Access FAQ:



Why Early Access?

TL;DR: We intend to make the game the best it can be by listening to player feedback.

We believe that traditional roguelikes make best use of Early Access especially if they actively engage with their community. We promise frequent updates, usually twice a month, based a lot on player feedback - you can already notice this from our update history and some topics on the steam forums! Roguelikes have traditionally been a long-brewing experience that like good wine got better with age.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?
“While we plan to support the game for several years with regular content updates, there is a state of the game that we can confidently call 1.0, which will provide a polished complete experience. We intend to achieve that milestone before the end of 2020.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?
“Roguelike development is usually a horizontal affair - adding more possibilities, more items, more traits and challenges, and adding more classes.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?
“The game is playable from start to finish, all the features described on the store page are implemented. What we are still expanding upon is the breadth of the game - more item, enemy and level variety, more special levels and challenges and better modding support. We're also committed to constantly improving performance and visual quality.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?
“We plan to gradually raise the price as we ship new content and features.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?
“Whether here on the Steam forums, or on our ChaosForge forums, be it Twitter or Reddit, we read all feedback. Anyone that has been active on our forums during our ASCII roguelike game days can tell that we treat all feedback seriously and very often implement player suggestions. Roguelike development is a very community driven effort :)
The Jupiter Hell Early Access release is available now on Steam and GOG for $25, with a 10% launch discount until next week.

There are 11 comments on DoomRL successor Jupiter Hell now available on Early Access

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