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Monster's Den: Godfall

2017-11-15

Monster's Den : Godfall Review

Forgottenlor crawls through the dungeons of Godfall to find out that there are some downsides to them
» Continue reading the article...

Vaporum

2017-09-28

Vaporum Interview

Farflame interviewed Matej Zajačik about Vaporum
» Read the article

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October

Stellar Tactics - Preview @ B3

by Myrthos, Monday - October 23, 2017 12:23

Big Boss Batlle has previewed the space RPG Stellar Tactics and found it to be extremely fun and intriguing.

While I will continually have to be extremely careful to not spoil anything, once you deal with the complexities and problems on your initial ship, the action moves to an entirely different place for your squad-based, multiple-area combat. Hint: it is very much like a dungeon crawler. Yes, in a space game. Yes, the way it has been done, it fits into the lore and narrative absolutely perfectly.

By look and feel, comparisons will naturally be made to the original first two Fallouts as well as Jagged Alliance. This is an old-school, party-based, leveling-up, weapon-swapping RPG – just like the good ole days. What Stellar Tactics is going to accomplish though, will dwarf those three games in scope and scale. All of the old, cool, established components are there as well: needing initiative for combat; specific combat order; kneeling and standing; limited action points; use of cover; weapon experience gained through usage; both single and group movement abilities; etc. Especially interesting is the fact that you (and your enemies) can fine tune your aim to specific body parts. It is certainly an odd feeling playing a brand new, rather early in development game – while feeling nostalgic at the same time.

Stellar Tactics

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Vigilantes - Version 21 Interim Update

by Myrthos, Monday - October 23, 2017 12:13

A new update for the upcoming version 21 of Vigilantes has been made available.

Now that the dust is settling on this month's release on Steam Early Access, we're getting stuck in to version 21. It's about 50% complete at present, and should be available in ~ 2 weeks.

In summary, we've added a new subway map, improved tactical re-positioning, reduced the intel requirements for finding gang leaders and rackets (which was one of the least balanced aspects of the game). Options have also been added for removing film grain, windowed support and adjusting camera speed, and a number of bugs have been fixed.

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Vigilantes

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Battle Brothers - Free DLC Released

by Silver, Sunday - October 22, 2017 09:30

The free DLC for Battle Brothers called Lindwurm has been released.

Free DLC Released

The Lindwurm DLC has just been released to every current and future owner of Battle Brothers for free. Challenge your mercenary company against a fearsome Lindwurm, an adversary of legend, home to the wild parts of the world and fiercely defending its hoard of treasure!

Read all about the content of this free DLC in the accompanying dev blog here. It's not necessary to start a new campaign in order for any of the additions to appear in your game.

Alongside the DLC, the game has also been updated to version 1.1.0.5 with a couple of bugfixes that we've collected over the past few weeks.

Changelog

  • Fixed game potentially freezing after combat ends under specific conditions.
  • Fixed 'Reset Equipment After Battle' option not working properly for specific combinations of equipment.
  • Fixed damage bonus from eating mushrooms not being displayed properly in some skill tooltips.
  • Fixed tooltip from a necromancer that himself has been raised from the dead not showing properly.
  • Fixed damage inflicted to a Direwolf's natural armor not being displayed in the combat log.
  • Fixed various minor issues.

Battle Brothers

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Vigilantes - Version 21 Progress Report

by Silver, Sunday - October 22, 2017 08:27

Work is proceeding on Vigilantes first post early access update.

Hi everyone,

Now that the dust is settling on this month's release on Steam Early Access, we're getting stuck in to version 21. It's about 50% complete at present, and should be available in ~ 2 weeks.

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In summary, we've added a new subway map, improved tactical re-positioning, reduced the intel requirements for finding gang leaders and rackets (which was one of the least balanced aspects of the game). Options have also been added for removing film grain, windowed support and adjusting camera speed, and a number of bugs have been fixed.

If you have any questions, comments or observations, please do post them!

All the best,

Daithi

Vigilantes

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Underrail - Gets a global Map

by Hiddenx, Thursday - October 19, 2017 19:10

Underrail will get a global map:

Dev Log #55: Global Map

Hi guys,

While our development is mostly focused on the expansion there are a couple of issues that we wanted to address before its release as we think that they will greatly influence the experience of playing the DLC as well as the base game.

First of these is the global map. This was a contested issue since the alpha versions and is probably the most frequent complaint we get from the people that have a positive view of the game as a whole. Some people may be wondering if the global map was something that was originally planned for the game and, truth to be told, I don't really remember (original plans for the game were laid almost 10 years ago now), but knowing myself I would probably implement one if I had the (time) resources that I have now. Back when I was at it alone I had to cut corners in both content and feature departments, and map is a bit of both really. Later, when the game has grown monstrously in size, even though I then had the time to add new features, a good amount of geographical inconsistencies made sure that there was no quick and easy way to produce a quality map, but instead some major rearragements were going to have to be made.

[...]

Underrail

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Ebony Spire: Heresy - Release in November

by Hiddenx, Tuesday - October 17, 2017 20:47

The dungeon crawler Ebony Spire: Heresy will be released in November:

Ebony Spire: Heresy

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Ebony Spire: Heresy is a love letter to dungeon crawlers of old with a twist: It's been signed with the blood of many roguelike games that have been experienced by the writer. Crawl, throw, summon and smash your way through 25 levels of pure mishap in this first person turn based dungeon crawling game. Experience a back-to-the-basics computer role playing game where items play a central role. Pick up, throw, use, equip and drink your way up the tower to slay the fervent goddess. 

Items range from equippable swords and armors to drinkable potions and artifacts that can summon, teleport or annihilate your enemies. Trinkets can be wield to increase your stats and everything can be thrown around to trigger their effects or just crush your opponents underneath their weight.

KEY FEATURES

  • All items can be used by and against the player. Enemies have access to the same abilities as you do
  • Character development revolves around the items that can be obtained. There are no classic stats or XP grinding
  • Turn-based combat in a very roguelike fashion
  • Portals that will lead you outside the tower for a quick item hunting session: Cities, Harbors, Dungeons and Arenas can be explored

Make the game your own

The source code for the game is available under the MIT license. Feel free to use it to create your own adventure. And since the code is easily accessible you can mod it, add items, enemies and levels to your hearts content.

 

Ebony Spire: Heresy

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wasteland 3 - Setting the Stage

by Silver, Saturday - October 14, 2017 10:53

There is a new update for Wasteland 3 on Fig. The update provides details on their vertical slice of the Everest and what it takes to set the stage.

Setting the Stage

Posted: 10/14/2017

Hi everyone, Paul here with the next installment of our look at building a vertical slice. Last go-around, Colin McComb took us through the high-level concept (and iterations on it) of the Everest Hotel. In this entry, and just in time for #Blocktober, level designer Alex Kerr takes us through the process of building that concept into reality - of crafting a game zone that captures the intent of the design. Fair warning: if you want to remain spoiler-free about this part of the game, skip past the next section!

Take it away, Alex!

[...]

Wasteland 3

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Battle Brothers - Free DLC Lindwurm

by Hiddenx, Friday - October 13, 2017 19:11

A free DLC called Lindwurm will be available for Battle Brothers on October 19:

Dev Blog #98: The Lindwurm

What is this sorcery?! Why, it’s a dev blog about the upcoming free Lindwurm DLC for Battle Brothers, of course! We’ve been working on a small thank-you gift for all you passionate fans on the side, and this is it. You’re about to get to face an entirely new opponent, get new armor to wear and items to use, new loot to collect, and a new banner to hoist for your company. Let’s take a closer look!

The Lindwurm

In Germanic mythology, a Lindwurm is a wingless bipedal dragon resembling a large snake. It’s a large and fearsome creature, the adversary in many a legend, and it’s making its way into Battle Brothers. The wild and uncivilized parts of the world are about to become more dangerous, as you’ll soon find a Lindwurm or two roaming thereabout, making an old forest or hillside their territory and fiercely defending their hoard of treasure from any intruder.

In combat, the Lindwurm is the only opponent that occupies two tiles at once – one for the upper body, and one for the tail. While both are part of a single body, and thus share hitpoints, the Lindwurm can move them and attack with them separately. The Lindwurm’s mouth is armed with long and sharp teeth, which can easily tear a grown man in two. The tail is strong enough to slam against several men at once, stagger them or even knock them across the battlefield.

And if that wasn’t terrifying enough, a Lindwurm’s blood is also highly corrosive to many materials – including those used in armor. Whenever a Lindwurm takes hitpoint damage in melee, the attacker may be sprayed with their acidic blood, which will slowly eat away at any armor for several turns. Attacking with polearms and ranged weapons will prevent you from being sprayed with acid. On the other hand, a Lindwurm’s acidic blood can also be used to your advantage…

But wait, there’s more!

You’re about to get a new Lindwurm-themed set of named armor, helmet and shield, which come with the unique property of being unaffected by the highly corrosive Lindwurm blood. And then, of course, there’s a new Lindwurm-themed banner to choose for your mercenary campaign of fearless lizard hunters.

The acidic blood of a Lindwurm can be collected in flasks, which can then be thrown from the offhand in battle, shattering on impact and corroding over several turns the armor of anyone nearby that is unfortunate enough to be hit – useful against heavily armored opponents such as orcs or the later ancient dead.

When can I play it?

The Lindwurm DLC will be released on October 19th for free to every owner of Battle Brothers. It’s not necessary to start a new campaign in order for any of the additions to appear in your game.

Battle Brothers

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Ash of Gods - interview @ Enklawa

by Myrthos, Tuesday - October 10, 2017 09:01

The Polish website Enklawa Network has interviewed Sergei Bokarev and Anton Bazhenov from Aurum Dust, about Ash of Gods, which got funded on Kickstarter in June of this year.

EnklawaNetwork.pl: First of all, congratulations for your successful campaign of Ash of Gods on Kickstarter! What is a current stage of the game development?

Sergei Bokarev: Thank you! We currently have most of the assets ready and are putting together and working on our alpha build.

Anton Bazhenov: Actually we already have a playable build and even streamed the first chapter of the game to the Russian community. Unfortunately, the build is still raw so it is available for team members only. But we working hard to improve it to share with journalists and players to get some honest feedback.

EN: Can you introduce us to a main story of the game without spoiling too much?

SB: Here’s a summary that describes the story: the world has known seven hundred years of peace. But that peace is about to come to an end. The Feast of the Spring Equinox is in full swing, when the bell in the town hall suddenly begins to ring. Captain Thorn Brenin, the bodyguard Lo Pheng, the scribe Hopper Rouley, and many others, do not know yet that the reapers have returned and intend to drown the entire world in blood so that they may awaken the sleeping gods. By the way, in our intro you may see great battle on the eve of the seven centuries of tranquillity.

Ash of Gods

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Jupiter Hell - October Update

by Silver, Monday - October 09, 2017 03:04

Jupiter Hell is a turn based science fiction roguelike. Here is the latest update.

Jupiter Hell October Update

Posted by Darren Grey

Firstly, some apologies are in order. We've been poor at communication these last few months. Though we've had regular tweets and Twitch streams, but have been neglecting proper updates on Kickstarter. We're very sorry! We're developers, not natural marketing people, but we shall try to do better.

We've also had some delays in the delivery schedule. The original plan stated an Early Access version by November. Development is going very steadily, but with some things taking longer than anticipated and some of the development schedule being rearranged. Our current plan is to shortly release our third pre-alpha to the Inner Circle, and then the alpha by the year end.

Further development updates:

  • Two new programmers have joined the team. Olgierd is working on rendering and resource management. Emil is working on the game's audio engine.
  • We're now integrating engine tools into the game which will make the Jupiter Hell more open to modding. This was originally planned to be done much later, but is far more effective if done at an early stage.
  • Physics in the game can been optimised, meaning it will perform much better on a wide variety of machines.
  • Shadows have been improved, and a new optional shadow algorithm will be available for stronger hardware (see comparison below).
  • Resource management has been added to the game.
  • We have a new sound engine ready for implementation, with Roland working on the soundtrack and audio samples.
  • New tilesets and enemies have been added.

...

Art

Ewa and Lukasz have been busy on the art side, including producing these lovely new concept pieces:

Fat Guy ConceptThe 'Fat Guy' - currently being implemented in-game

Summoner concept
Concept art of the 'Summoner'

Jupiter Hell

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Roguelike
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Stellar Tactics - Progress Update

by Silver, Monday - October 09, 2017 02:03

Stellar Tactics continues making progress on developing its ship systems.

Progress update - 10/6/17

Hi everyone. Here is the update for this week. Hope you all have a great weekend.

Added experience system for piloting, weaponry, electronics and targeting skills. You gain experience at the end of combat for each skill assuming you have a team member assigned to the appropriate station on your ship.

Completed key bindings for turrets - Keys 1-6 - press for individual targeting - hold and release to toggle turrets on/off.

Mining lasers moved to turret system. Can individually target each mining laser to multiple asteroids.
--Combat while mining possible. Mining is a bit less peaceful now as it is possible to be attacked by hostile ships while mining.
--Mining turrets come in light and heavy variants.
--Mining turrets will come in various quality tiers similar to combat turrets and can be purchased or found as loot drops. Higher quality mining lasers will generate bonuses to the yield of rare minerals.
--Mining lasers draw energy from your capacitor and have no ammunition requirements
--Mining turrets use the same energy management system as combat turrets. You can balance energy to engines and shields against your capacitor charge. You need to power up your turrets to mine asteroids.
--You can mine while in combat with enemy ships. Larger ships have more turret mount points and you can balance mining with defensive turrets
--Heavy mining turrets generate twice the yield and consume twice the capacitor charge of light turrets. Yield is modified by your skill in mining. When perks for mining go in you will be able to fine tune mining in a number of ways based on your selections.
--Mining turrets can be brought on and offline for energy management as needed
--Mining can be quite profitable and you're going to need the money to purchase new ships and equipment - ships are expensive. As an example the Pharris Crate MRCH-4 has six turrets total, 3 laser turrets and 3 missile turrets for defense. Filling the cargo bay (1700 cubic meters without a cargo expansion ) and not being picky about the mineral yield can net you around 34,000 Credits per trip. Imagine what you could do with a Behemoth CRG-2 which has 4 heavy turrets that will fit heavy mining lasers and 180,000 cubic meters of cargo space!
--I'll be adding asteroid and asteroid field scanning during alpha so you can evaluate the quality of the mineral yields for various asteroid fields. Rich asteroid fields will be guarded and you may need to purchase mining rights from the local faction authority or face resistance.
--I'll be adding the ability to eject cargo for the space combat update.

Moved all new effects (impacts, beams and explosions) to ground combat.

That's it for this week - back to work...

Stellar Tactics

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

The Iron Oath - Lore and World Details

by Silver, Sunday - October 08, 2017 00:02

The latest on The Iron Oath shares some details about its world and lore.

Lore and World Details (+Survey Reminder)

Hey everyone. Today we're going to reveal a bit more information about the world and its lore from the perspective of what an average citizen would know. We'll be keeping the full lore and history under lock and key for now, but throughout the game you'll be able to piece together the full story through exploration, discoveries, conversations and the completion of the main storyline.

The World

The game takes place on a landmass known as ‘Caelum' to its inhabitants. Caelum is surrounded by vast oceans that remain uncharted, fueling debate among citizens over the existence of other lands. Caelum itself is comprised of 9 regions:

  • Lithus: A small and sunny coastal region
  • Godsvale: A lush region full of large valleys, rivers and forests.
  • The Redlands: A vast desert region with most inhabitants residing on its coasts
  • Midland: A temperate region, once home to the capital of the Kingdom of Caelum
  • The Steppe: A region of grass-filled plains that can experience harsh winters
  • Winter's Reign: A frigid region surrounded by the sea and a vast mountain range
  • Highland Reach: A mountainous region that is home to one the largest port cities in Caelum
  • Dragate: A small region that is largely uninhabitable due to its rocky mountain formations
  • Daybreak Isles: A small tropical island known for its sunny and warm weather

The regions of Caelum were once united under one Kingdom and a lineage of rulers that remained unbroken for centuries. However, a plague swept through Caelum and put an end to the line and the lives of many other citizens. Following this event, a power struggle ensued with each Major House vying for power and staking their claim for the vacant throne. The ‘War of Dissolution' lasted for decades, with regional and civil wars alike all ending with a tentative peace between the major powers of Caelum, and the formation of many independent Kingdoms.

Notable Factions

The Blighted: The Blighted are a savage faction that were once human. Men and women who are afflicted by the dragon's blight slowly lose their minds and turn into aggressive abominations. It takes years for those affected to become fully Blighted, and there exists a moral dilemma among Caelum's citizens on how to deal with them. Blighted can be found in all corners of the world, roaming above ground or in the darkest depths of the land. You will encounter many Blighted, both fully-turned and some who yet retain a fragment of their minds and sanity.

The Vanguard Order: The Vanguard are an ancient order that was formed under the first King of Caelum and tasked with defending the realm from humanity's greatest threats. Once considered a prestigious order, they have somewhat fallen out of favor with the general public, mainly due to their employ of those afflicted with the Blight, and their failure to effectively protect humanity against the dragon.

The Overseers: The Overseers were formed shortly after magic was born into the world and were initially tasked with hunting down rogue mages who practiced forbidden arts. After the arrival of the dragon they also became responsible for tracking and killing the Blighted who had fled from the public. Due to the Vanguard's employ of Blighted, the Overseers also share in the dislike for their order, and they often end up hunting Blighted who run from their duty within the Vanguard.

Basic Lore

Caelum's history is split up into four ages, the First Age, the Age of Gods, the Age of Man and the Age of Heroes. The average citizen knows very little or nothing at all of the first two ages, and most stories that do exist are nothing more than myth and speculation. It is said that humanity was left to its own devices in the First Age until the Gods descended to the mortal realm to shepherd their development, thus beginning the Age of Gods.

Nobody knows how long The Age of Gods lasted, but few remnants of its time can still be found in the form of ruined cities and structures, including various shrines to the Gods that were once worshipped. A great host of invaders brought an end to the Age of Gods, bringing humanity to near-extinction and reducing its cities to dust. Humanity endured however and the Age of Man began, while both the invaders and Gods seemed to vanish from all accounts. Humanity's shattered civilization was rebuilt under a single Kingdom which flourished for centuries, enjoying peace and prosperity until the ‘War of Dissolution' began.

Years later saw the emergence of the dragon, a great being of death and disease that some proclaimed as a new God, sent to punish humanity for its sins. The dragon's curse saw men and women slowly transform into abominations, who became known as the Blighted. Humanity observed the effects of the Blight and those who showed signs were outcast from society in the best of cases(though some tolerant cities built prisons to hold them), but most were burned alive as the people began to fear the Blight and those who bore it. This fear and distrust extended to the Vanguard, who had allowed the Blighted to join their ranks and spend their final days in service of the realm.

Every few decades, the dragon would emerge from the Void and wreak havoc within the mortal realm. This become an accepted fate among the citizens of Caelum and they could see no way to escape it. Though the dragon's stay was always brief, the host of demons and spirits it left in its wake would pour into the surrounding areas and require the Vanguard and other heroes to take up arms in defense. This began the Age of Heroes, and these men and women became renowned for their deeds. Some citizens proclaimed that the heroes were immune to both death and the Blight, and others began to believe it true. Eventually however, these heroes that guarded the mortal realm for so long would fade into memory and myth. A few rumored sightings would spring up over the years, which never amounted to anything more than hearsay. Presently, many believe that the Age of Heroes has drawn to an end, but others still retain hope that they'll one day return.

The Void

The Void is an endless and dark realm of existence where the souls of the dead linger for eternity. It is home to many foul creatures, demons, spirits, and most notably the dragon. The Void is the source of all dark and blood magic within the world, and those who practice such arts are relentlessly pursued by the Overseers. The Void has a large role to play in the game and a variety of missions and storylines will frequently take you there.

The Iron Oath

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Vaporum - Review

by Hiddenx, Saturday - October 07, 2017 13:45

Chalgyr reviewed the dungeon crawler Vaporum:

Vaporum - PC Review

Vaporum treads into territory that I have personally seen very little of. While I love the Dungeon Crawling style I think to this point I have only ever explored Malevolence: The Sword of Ahkranox by myself without party members by my side. Taking things a step further, you’ll have to be quick on your toes because Vaporum while being designed as that robust old school Wizardry styled adventure that we all love, is also designed to be experienced in real-time.
[...]
Any fan of the Dungeon Crawling experience will find plenty to love here with the mix of the old schooled ideas and the new ones. Adding real-time elements to an experience that for so long as been turned based was brilliant and it works. While I’m not sure if the concepts that Vaporum introduce will become widely used in the future, I may have found myself with a new classic to hold others to a new standard.

Score: 8.5/10

Thanks Farflame!

Vaporum

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Vigilantes - Early Access Version released

by Hiddenx, Saturday - October 07, 2017 12:47

The Early Access version of Vigilantes is now available on Steam:

Vigilantes

Inspired by the classic turn based strategies of the 90s, Vigilantes is a deep and compelling neo noir, turn based tactical RPG with an old school heart. Assume the role of Sam Contino, an idealist dragged down the rabbit hole of vigilantism after intervening in a violent mugging. Vigilantes will be coming to Steam Early access soon, so please consider adding us to your wishlist, if you'd like to stay tuned to additions and improvements!

[...]

Vigilantes

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Stardew Valley - How to Make a Winery

by Silver, Saturday - October 07, 2017 10:52

PCGamer have a guide on how to make a winery in Stardew Valley.

1. Start with a blank slate

One of the most daunting tasks for new Stardew Valley players is the absolute mess of a farm you start the game with. Left to the wild will of mother nature, your new farm is overgrown with trees, grass, rocks, and all manner of other detritus-a far cry from some of the immaculate creations in our gallery of farms. Cleaning the whole thing up not only gives you a great sense of accomplishment, it gives you a nice blank canvas to start with. But cleaning up your farm is not just a good move for new players-it's also a good idea for players who haphazardly placed their first few farm buildings and are now left with a disorganized, inefficient system to manage.

As with any large-scale overhaul, it's easier to start fresh and build anew than fix a broken system piece by piece. It might seem like moving backwards, but the best way to start planning out a well-organized farm is to detach from emotion and burn it all to the ground. Chop the trees, bust the rocks, sell off your animals (having to tend to daily feed, love, and milkings is just another distraction), and destroy all the buildings. The fresh slate of an empty farm is now our canvas.

[...]

Stardew Valley

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Mount & Blade II - Armies & Influence

by Silver, Friday - October 06, 2017 01:51

The Mount & Blade 2: Bannerlord developers are ready to share details of the singleplayer experience in their latest blog, starting with Armies and Influence.

Dev Blog 05/10/17

Greetings warriors of Calradia!

In this week's blog we would like to talk about an aspect of the game which many of you have requested we talk about for quite some time now: singleplayer. We decided that the most interesting way to do this would be to discuss different features and mechanics from the campaign in their own dedicated blogs. We hope that, over time, we can touch on many of the key aspects of the sandbox and give you all a better understanding of what to expect in Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.

In a previous blog[www.taleworlds.com] we briefly discussed a mechanic which is new to the Mount & Blade series, influence. Influence acts as a kind of currency in the game and can be earned by serving your kingdom in various ways: destroying bandits or enemy parties, raiding, capturing enemy settlements etc. Influence points can be spent to determine the outcome of some faction decisions and to make requests to allied lords. We have already shown you that influence can be spent to ask an allied lord to follow you, but one thing we are yet to discuss is how players can use our new army gathering system to perform this action on a grander scale.

So how does this work? Well, each allied lord has an influence cost based on the power of their party. Players can spend their influence points to summon allied lords to form their own army. It is the leader of the army which gains all of the influence for the army's victorious deeds, e.g. capturing a city will result in a huge influence boon for the leader, so spending influence to build an army is actually an investment, and sometimes even a gamble. If an army leader can no longer afford to spend influence then the army will start to disband.

Army influence upkeep cost is based on several factors:

  • If the army morale is high, then upkeep costs are lower (and vice versa)
  • Distance from their hometowns, how long they have been fighting etc.
  • Relations between the army commander and lords


As long as the army is successful in their efforts and the lord commander is keeping the other lords happy, then the army can go on marching for a long time. But if things don't go so well, the army will quickly dissolve and lords will decide to abandon the campaign and return to their own lands.

When an army is gathered it becomes almost like a moving settlement, with its own UI overlay on the campaign map. The UI shows:

  • Army morale
  • Lords and their parties
  • Food supplies
  • Marching speed (players can see factors affecting the marching speed from a tooltip)

The UI also shows portraits of the lords which are currently a part of the army and their current relations with the player. Deep red means that they despise you, whereas bright green means that they are your favourite drinking buddy! If a lord has answered the summons and is travelling to join your army, or if they are currently away from the army on a mission, their portrait will appear greyed out with an indicator displaying their distance from the army's current position, which is measured in days of travelling time. If you are an army commander you can click on a portrait to talk with a lord and give them a task to perform, such as scout ahead, bring food, bring reinforcements, bring horses, etc. You can dismiss lords to send them back to defend their lands or to trim the army and better manage your influence upkeep costs. If you are a member of an army, the army commander or other lords might have their own missions for you.

Another aspect of the new army system is that armies use pooled resources to support their campaigns. This means that if one lord brings some food, butter, for instance, then the rest of the army will be fed. Likewise, horses and mules are shared, increasing the movement speed of the entire army.

This new system allows for all lords to call on other allied lords and build their own army. Because of the large influence costs, it is of course easier for a king to do this, however there will certainly be times when some powerful lords will have more influence and money than their liege and will be able to amass their own powerful armies to take on a campaign. It also makes it possible for players to try their hand at army management relatively early in the game, before they have had a chance to climb to the top of a kingdom.

We feel that the new influence and army gathering systems better simulate the historical feudal system. When the player becomes part of a kingdom, they have obligations to their liege. This system allows players to pay for the benefits of being a lord by supporting their liege and fellow lords in military campaigns while building up influence within the realm to serve their own purposes.

 

 

In next week's blog we will talk with Graphic Artist, Fatma Nadide Öçba. If you have a question you would like to ask her about her work, please leave a reply in the comment section and we will pick one out for her to answer.

Discuss this blog post HERE

Mount & Blade II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Hand of Fate 2 - Release Date: November 7

by Hiddenx, Thursday - October 05, 2017 00:41

PC Gamer reports that Hand of Fate 2 will be released on November 7:

Hand of Fate 2 will be out in November, fourth companion revealed

Ariadne is a powerful melee warrior with 'boundless optimism.'

The action-RPG card game Hand of Fate 2 was announced last year as a "more nuanced" take on its predecessor, with a greater emphasis on smart deck building and a focus on "improving and expanding the concepts and systems of the original." Things seemed to be coming along well half a year later when we caught up with Defiant Development at PAX West 2016, and today the studio announced that the work is just about done, and the game will be out on November 7.

[...]

Thanks henriquejr!

Hand of Fate 2

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Card-Based RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Dungeons Of Aledorn - Development Update

by Myrthos, Wednesday - October 04, 2017 11:36

Dungeons of Aledorn is still moving towards beta and in their recent update a diagram is shown with what will be part of the beta and what not, next to an update to the status of development.

We are beginning with introduction of new location, a temple located in caves. Players will be led to this location by main storyline, but we don’t want to say too much and spoil your surprise. Whether it’s only first version of this temple, and we will work on in in the future, we think, that it’s worth of sharing.

...

Next topics is focused on herbs (ingredients for alchemy). In Dungeons of Aledorn, there is several biom types a in each of them, there can be differnt kinds of herbs. We have three levels of herb rarity: common, uncommon and rare. Common and uncommon will be randomly generated into predefined zones. Sometimes you can spot even rare one, but amout of them is strictly limited. Reason of that is to lower amount of grinding, because rare herbs are pretty useful and valuable, and they have huge impact. So in real game, it will work like this: location has 10 zones, where herbs can appear, random amount of common and uncommon herbs and precise number of rare hers will be generated in those zones. How it looks form designers point of view is shown in video below.

...

And what content you should expect in beta? You can experience exploration of several dungeons and some exterior fights. You can visit few towns, loads of interiors, working skills and leveling system. Then you can try simplified camping system and we have bunch of quests prepared as well.

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Dungeons Of Aledorn

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Unsung Story - Backer Exclusive Content

by Myrthos, Monday - October 02, 2017 12:36

Little Orbit has decided that more backer exclusive content is needed in their Kickstarter postings for Unsung Story. So this is about the Kickstarter updates and not the game. I really doubt that is functional as a public update potentially generates more attention, but whatever.

So, for those who did not spent any money on the Kickstarter, the news in update #59 is that there will be three more exclusive updates this month. The first of those 3, Update #60 talks about changes to rewards and add-ons.

The majority of changes are based around two issues that we found:

1) Few backers selected the item, which make it financially wasteful to produce

The biggest example of the first case is the Game Package sold as a $5 add-on. This package promises 3 exclusive stages only for the backers that ordered it, and only 329 backers purchased it. That means we would be producing 3 extra stages of the game for a small group of players, and we can never release those stages anywhere else. That's not a commitment we can make. For now, we are going to cancel this item. However we are evaluating the possibility of offering a new add-on closer to launch that will give backers a discount on purchasing some form of DLC that isn't exclusive.

Similarly only 52 backers selected the Kindle version of the main game and 61 backers selected the Kindle version of the Card Game. Windows Tablet had equally low orders. It's possible that back in 2014, both of these platforms were more viable, but today we need to focus on systems that the majority of backers chose.

The late addition 2nd T-Shirt is another example. Only 5 backers selected this add-on, so it makes no sense to go through the work and effort of making it. NOTE: This is a different shirt from the "developer" T-Shirt that was promised as part of the main campaign. We will be producing the "developer" T-Shirt.

2) Shipping was never calculated properly, so the add-on or reward was under priced

As an example of this second case, we did some research and the least expensive international shipping is $24 through USPS for padded flat rate envelopes.

https://www.usps.com/international/priority-mail-international.htm

Many larger reward tiers will require larger boxes to deliver everything. Yet international shipping was only priced at $15. While we do want to deliver as many rewards as possible, we can't afford to lose money on international shipping.

Lastly, the physical copies of each game were thrown in with little to no thought about shipping or extra costs. Only 6 backers chose the Physical version of Linux and 6 backers chose the Physical version of OSX.

Don't panic. While we are changing or canceling some rewards, we are also going to give some limited refunds to make up for it.

Please don't flood us with requests for full refunds. We have a complete list of everyone and what they ordered. If you purchased any of the rewards we are changing or canceling, we will be contacting you and working through either a replacement of equal value or giving the money back.

The following add-ons and rewards are being canceled:

  • $25 PayPal Pledges for T-Shirt (3 backers selected)
  • $40 PayPal Pledges for T-Shirt (1 backers selected)
  • Add-on for 2nd T-Shirt (1 backers selected)
  • Kindle version of Main Game (52 backers selected)
  • Kindle version of Card Game (61 backers selected)
  • Windows Tablet version of Main Game (113 backers selected)
  • Physical OSX (6 backers selected)
  • Physical Linux (6 backers selected)
  • Physical Windows (482 backers selected)
  • Exclusive Game Package with 3 extra stages

The following add-ons and rewards are being changed:

  • $15 International Shipping is being raised to $24
  • Addon for Additional copy will not included physical versions

Besides this there are apparently funds to also release the game on Xbox One, PS4 and Switch.

Unsung Story

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: J-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Age of Fear 3: The Legend - Elementalist Expansion

by Hiddenx, Sunday - October 01, 2017 07:54

The Elementalist Expansion for Age of Fear 3: The The Legend has been released:

ELEMENTALIST EXPANSION!

Hello everyone,

As promised there is the first official DLC for Age of Fear 3: The Legend!
I am sorry it was delayed - we needed some time to balance it properly.

What's inside?
Five new battles with completely new enemies (Gargoyles), a riddle and Elementals which will join you doing the remainder of campaign!

(you can completely replace dwarves or forest creatures and finish game with Elementals!)

I hope you will enjoy and that's why we offered a huge initial discount (-25%!) for our players.


As always - take care,
Les

Age of Fear 3: The Legend

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Dungeons of Chaos - Update 2.0.320

by Hiddenx, Sunday - October 01, 2017 07:47

Update 2.0.320 for Dungeons of Chaos has been released:

2.0.320 UPDATE is here!

v.320 brings with it:

  • 2 items for the weapon slot than enhance UNARMED attacks, fairly inexpensive and dropping as regular loot from the start occasionally
  • a trader in Tartessos specialising in those
  • added over a dozen class specific single-player arena challenges in Tartessos
  • added 5 new unlockable birth feats as reward for those arena challenges
  • fixed an issue with dead players showing up in arena challenges
  • fixed an issue where non-allowed spells would still deduct mana and cost time

If you like the updates and the game please leave a review and spread the word!

Thanks,
Volker

Dungeons of Chaos

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

September

Vaporum - Review Roundup

by Hiddenx, Saturday - September 30, 2017 09:06

Farflame spotted some Vaporum reviews:

GameBanshee:

Conclusion

I liked Vaporum well enough, but I didn't love it.  The game owes a lot to Legend of Grimrock -- both in how it looks and how it plays -- but it feels like a more simplified, minimalistic version of that game, with significantly easier puzzles.  But since Legend of Grimrock 3 might never arrive, Vaporum fills a niche, and it's a perfectly reasonable way to spend 20 hours of your life.

Gamespace:

Our Vaporum Review Conclusion

Overall, I enjoyed my time with Vaporum. The developers did a great job of updating a genre that has been buried by the sands of time. They took an old-school dungeon crawl, added a fresh coat of paint (no crappy 8-bit graphics here), dropped it into a fresh Steampunk setting, and added some modern mechanics while staying true to the genre. The story was well told, but it would have been better had it been as unique as the setting.

Score: 8.5/10

Bonusstage:

Vaporum is such a refreshing return to form that I completely didn’t know I wanted nor was expecting. By taking two different gameplay ideas – dungeon crawling and steampunk – and marrying them without too many ridiculous offshoot tactics, you get something that’s distilled to a truly solid concept. I can’t tell you how many “steampunk” ideas have been hokey, or how many Bioshock “inspired” games might as well be called “Not Rapture.” And, rather than just be a straight Grimrock variation, Vaporum adds a huge twist on the leveling and combat system without giving up completely on the formula. For a first game, this is an incredibly impressive endeavor, and I’ve invested hours, yet I’m certain I haven’t found everything. By all means, step into your own exo-rig and prepare for an incredible journey, Vaporum deserves your full attention.

Score: 9/10

Vaporum

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Mount & Blade II - QA Questions

by Silver, Friday - September 29, 2017 15:20

The latest dev blog for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord asks Meriç Neşeli about QA.

OFFICIAL JOB DESCRIPTION
QA Lead and Game Designer

WHAT DO YOU NORMALLY DO DURING YOUR DAY?
"In the morning I organise and allocate the day's assignments for the rest of my team. Our daily tests revolve around testing features for both the game and the game engine. We test the functionality of newly added features and track general development day-by-day to ensure that the game is still stable after changes to the code.

In the afternoon I attend a meeting with members of our various teams. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss the development process and establish which features need our immediate attention in testing. Naturally, the QA team gets to spend a lot more time playing Bannerlord than the rest of our colleagues which means that we have a somewhat deeper understanding of the current state of the game than others. We get to see the long term effects of design decisions and offer our feedback. If a feature is still interesting after hundreds of hours of gameplay then that is a good indication that the right decision was made during the design stage."

WHAT DO YOU LIKE THE MOST ABOUT BANNERLORD?
"I like a wide variety of things about the game; battle strategy, the teamwork required in multiplayer, the different factions - each with their own distinctive culture... There is just too much that I enjoy to narrow it down to a single choice."

WHAT'S THE MOST DIFFICULT THING THAT YOU SOLVED SO FAR, DURING THE PRODUCTION OF BANNERLORD?
"Balancing troops. In Bannerlord, each faction has their own unique troops. Although unique troops offer some advantages over regular troops, we still have to strike a balance with how these units compare to similar troops within their own faction, and how they will perform against units from each of the other factions.

Each faction has their own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to army compositions. For example, Empire's core units are heavy infantry, which are more durable than other infantry in Calradia. We need to select their perks and equipment in a way which will provide them with this advantage, yet exposes them to risk. In this case, the weakness of heavy infantry is shock infantry, such as the Falxmen of Battania. A good strategy to employ with Empire is to use infantry and ranged units in close proximity so that they can provide support to each other against their counter troop types.

Another balancing issue is the cost of troops, which is set according to the power of the unit. In Captain Mode we had to handle this a little differently because money doesn't feature in this game mode. We decided to alter the troop count instead of the price, with the reasoning that all players have the same amount of funds and therefore the stronger units should have fewer soldiers because their recruitment and upkeep costs would be higher."

WHAT DO YOU CURRENTLY WORK ON?
"Answering these blog questions, (just kidding!) I'm currently working on setting civilian equipment for lords. Lords will wear helmets and heavy armour in battle, but you will see the same lords wearing robes or silk tunics in a lord's hall. The aim of this is to make the world feel more realistic and immersive."

WHAT FACTION DO YOU LIKE THE MOST IN BANNERLORD?
"Battania. Battanians have tattoos and battle paints giving them the look and feel of Celts. They have well skilled, armoured archers and many of their troops use two-handed weapons, (the archers included!) I find the atmosphere in their large and sparsely populated cities to be fascinating, and even though the cities are mostly ruinous, walking around them feels relaxed."

WHAT KIND OF PROCESSES DO YOU GO THROUGH WHILE TESTING SCENES AND CAMPAIGN?
"There are two types of tests which we use. The first one is automated tests which are run by code. Some of them are unit tests, others performance tests, there are visual tests, etc. We have several computers running these tests at all times. The second type of tests are manual tests, which are performed by the QA team. We prepared a document for manual tests which includes testing steps for each scene and feature. We currently have 5 people working in the QA team and we focus our work on our field of experience, for example the editor tester checks engine features daily."

WHAT WAS ONE OF THE STRANGEST OR FUNNIEST BUGS THAT YOU'VE EXPERIENCED DURING QA?
"There was a bug at one stage where everyone in towns, some of them naked, madly started attacking the player! The screenshots came out to be almost like a renaissance painting."

Mount & Blade II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

RPGWatch Feature - Vaporum Interview

by Myrthos, Thursday - September 28, 2017 09:13

Our Farflame interviewed Fatbot Studios' Matej Zajaeik about their steampunk dungeon crawler Vaporum, which is going to be released today.

RPGWatch: Story-driven games with strong narrative are trendy nowadays. How big a role does the story have in Vaporum? Do you have some NPCs and dialogues in the game?

Matej: For me, the story is always the force that drives me forward in any game, once the novelty of the setting, the mechanics, and the enemies fades. And yes, the story plays a major role in Vaporum. We always wanted it such. That's one of the reasons why Vaporum only has a single character with a pre-defined history that you reveal, and not a party of anonymous heroes. With this setup, we were able to tightly involve the character in the storyline and make it, hopefully, interesting.

As for the NPCs and dialogs, yes, you will come to know a few via logs and recordings, with their own personalities and motives. The major ones are fully voiced by quality voice-actors so you don't even need to read that much.

Actually, you don't need to pay attention to the story at all if you just want to have a blast killing enemies and beating puzzles.

Vaporum

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Vaporum - Release Day

by Hiddenx, Thursday - September 28, 2017 08:29

The steampunk dungeon crawler Vaporum will be released today:

Vaporum is a grid-based, single-player & single-character dungeon crawler RPG seen from the first person perspective in an original steampunk setting. Inspired by old-school games like Dungeon Master I and II, the Eye of the Beholder series, and the most recent Legend of Grimrock I and II. Stranded in the middle of an ocean, in front of a gigantic tower, the hero has to find out what the place is, what happened there, and most importantly, who he is.

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Key Features

  • First person real-time combat
  • Puzzles and level-wide objectives
  • Gadget-based RPG system
  • Lots of exploration, loot, and character customization
  • Mysterious storyline filled with secrets
  • Fully voiced main characters
  • Immersive steampunk setting

Combat

Combat takes place in real time. Each enemy has a distinctive set of strengths and weaknesses so you have to employ different tactics to beat each one. Weapon types have each a set of unique bonuses and behaviors which adds more depth and thought when choosing what weapons to equip.

You will find many types of gadgets: direct attacks, area attacks, offensive & defensive buffs... These gadgets are powerful, but some enemies are immune to certain types of attacks, so you will have to figure out the best way to deal with every encounter the game throws at you.

Puzzles

Solve intriguing puzzles and level-wide objectives where you have to use both your wits and reflexes. While most puzzles and riddles are contained in a single room, progression objectives can span an entire level or even multiple levels.

Character Progression

Instead of increasing the abilities of your human character, you will improve an exoskeleton rig you wear. The game combines a "you are what you wear" aspect with a long-term development of your exo-rig. The gadget-based system allows you change your loadout of gadgets at any time, giving you a great deal of flexibility to deal with various situations. On the other hand, as you progress, you get to unlock useful circuits on your exo-rig, gaining significant permanent attribute bonuses and passive skills.

Story and Exploration

Stranded on a small islet in the middle of an ocean, you enter a gigantic mechanical tower. Nothing makes sense to you, but it is all strangely familiar...

If you want to get into the backstory and uncover the mysteries of the tower, you can delve right into it by reading all the notes you can find. Don't worry, though, you can safely ignore all the text. All major story points are narrated by the main characters and they are fully voiced!

There are many optional areas in the game that you can choose to explore. They usually present some form of additional challenge, but come with a reward too! The tower is riddled with secret passages that contain unique items and notes of its inhabitants, giving you an insight into their lives and events that precede your arrival.

Vaporum

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Hob - Released

by Silver, Wednesday - September 27, 2017 00:42

Hob has been released on Steam.

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Discover your role as the sole protagonist on a strange and beautiful world torn apart by competing life forms. Others have tried and failed. Now, it's your chance: make it home.

Hob

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Vigilantes - Version 20 and Steam

by Myrthos, Tuesday - September 26, 2017 09:53

Version 20 of vigilantes is available now and for the first time on Steam.

Vigilantes version 20 is now available, on Humble and, for the first time, Steam. You can find your Steam key in the humble package (which is a url that was sent to you via private message on Kickstarter). Vigilantes won't be generally available until 5 October, but the keys sent to you will allow you to play it immediate. Hope you enjoy. If you encounter any issues retrieving your keys, please do get in touch.

Summary of improvements:

  • Added voiced, illustrated introduction
  • Greatly improved combat dialogue variety
  • Re-introduced a number of musical tracks
  • Improved appearance of cityscape Improved appearance of gang intel screen
  • Improved diversity of enemy equipment
  • Shop now regenerates inventory every 24 hours
  • Added 2 new maps (Mafia jazz club & villa)
  • Added 6 new ranged weapons: Nobuki Ashigaru, Nobuki Ronin, Nobuki Samurai, Sawed off Orthrus, General Arms Peacemaker, Eurocorp Nemesis.
  • Added 2 new ranged weapons: Baton & machete
  • Completed basic Steam integration
  • Greatly improved overall game stability and particularly the stability of the overwatch system
  • Fixed a number of bugs
  • Improved and expanded tutorial content

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Vigilantes

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

RPGWatch Feature - Expeditions: Viking Review

by Myrthos, Monday - September 25, 2017 09:52

Purpleblob sent us a review of Logic Artists' Expeditions: Viking and found some good and some lesser good.

Upon completing Expeditions: Viking, I sighed with the rush of mixed feelings. It was a fun journey, enough to revisit the game for the second time which is something I rarely do. Yet, it didn't provide me with the sense of delight and satisfaction I usually feel upon completing games I love. Certainly, Viking has many interesting qualities that caught my attention during the early game. However, my initial glee was replaced by disappointment the deeper I got in as the game fails to flesh out its implemented features and leaves one with the feeling it could have really benefited from some extra development time to address its flaws.

The game begins at a feast held in honour of your father, the late Thegn of your clan. His rule left the clan in a vulnerable position, and it's left to you to uphold your family's honour by strengthening the clan, and cementing your position as the new Thegn. You set your eyes upon the land across the sea, hoping to bring back whatever is necessary to improve both your clan's military power, and its prosperity.

Whether you decide to achieve this through bloody invasions or by using a diplomatic approach to establish trade and secure an alliance with the Anglo-Saxons or Celts, there is only one year left until the next Althing. Should you fail in your expedition, you will be made an exile by the King and lose everything you hold dear.

Expeditions: Viking

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details