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ATOM RPG: Post-apocalyptic indie game

2019-03-04

RPGWatch Indie Showcase/ ATOM RPG

In our second installment of the Indie Showcase, we take a look at ATOM RPG.
» Continue reading the article...

Vigilantes

2019-02-14

Vigilantes Review

Forgottenlor dives into Vigilantes and finds some good and bad.
» Read the article

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March

Starpoint Gemini 3 - Dev Diary #1

by Silver, Thursday - March 07, 2019 07:52

The first dev diary for Starpoint Gemini 3.

Dev Diary #1

Everything starts with an idea

Starpoint Gemini is a journey that started ten years ago, and with each installment of the series, we tried something new in our attempt to provide a better experience for our players. We knew all those years ago, when the original setting was created, that it would take us several installments to tell the Starpoint Gemini story.

Let’s fast forward a little bit. Starpoint Gemini Warlords, at the time our largest and most ambitious project, combined several different genres and play styles. However, it lacked developed characters and a compelling storyline and our players had mixed feelings about the spin-off. With different reactions swarming the forums, it was clear that big decisions had to be made. And so, a new idea was born.
We decided to thoroughly analyze our previous installments to learn about their strong and weak points. Our research also included examining other space games to flesh out the idea of a gameplay that our fans would find most immersive. It goes without saying that this “research” was also a very fun one.


Public opinion

feedback
Starpoint Gemini series has a big fan base and it was important for us to take their suggestions into consideration. We received hundreds of ideas, many of which were not possible to apply to our previous games or were simply ludicrous, but entering a new development cycle, we were able to give them another go. Even though we faced many different ideas from our fans, their feedback was, as always, very helpful in deciding what kind of gameplay experience we wanted to create. Most people wanted to add the cockpit view, making the controls more intuitive for the players, and to enrich the Starpoint Gemini universe with interesting characters and an immersive story. The idea of turning one of our spaceships into a flying pink pony came up again, but, sadly, didn’t quite fit in with the general concept of the game 😊.


The solutions are closer than you think…

We decided to make an even better single player experience with a great story and developed characters. We knew that our newest installment should tell a story about a space adventurer whose journey takes him all over the vast universe we have been creating for all these years. We also knew that the players should experience that universe firsthand as they visit different locations, interact with characters, and get pulled into conflicts between factions.

model
And to tell that story, we needed a writer who would put it on paper in the form of a game script. Funny how things happen in life, but the solution to that problem happened to be in our very own neighborhood. And no, we don’t mean that we gave the scriptwriting job to a waiter from our favorite coffee shop, but to a professional writer with years of experience in the sci-fi genre: Darko Macan, known for his work with the Star Wars and Marvel series, lives and works practically next door. We contacted him and presented to him our idea for the new Starpoint Gemini installment. Macan liked the idea of working with us on this project and we got ourselves a writer.


A picture is worth a thousand words

battleship
A compelling storyline is only a part of creating an immersive world inhabited by interesting characters. Our artists took on the great challenge of coming up with ideas for the characters, spaceships, stations, and other elements that would enrich the Starpoint Gemini universe. For the first time, players will be able to interact with other NPCs and get face to face with the aliens who were ever present in the previous installments, but never seen before. The aliens did their own little Blitzkrieg on the Empire. They were always known as a mysterious force that manipulates everything in the universe and now the players will have the opportunity to meet them and find out more about them.

alien
This situation with the aliens perfectly depicts the progress that Starpoint Gemini 3 has made, and why. For the first time in the series, players will get to experience all the aspects of living in Gemini and get a better understanding of how that universe works.


What’s next?

In our next blog post, we will shed more light on our project so that our fans would get the impression of what they can expect in Starpoint Gemini 3. All of our previous installments made big shifts from the original concept and this one is no exception. The new approach we are taking will give to our players an opportunity to experience our universe like never before.
Starpoint Gemini Universe is such a rich, complex, intricately detailed world. But to genuinely experience these details, you’ll have to land on a planet, find the nearest bar, and try ordering Liberland Temptation from a sarcastic Exteran barman…

Until next time!
LGM Games crew

Starpoint Gemini 3

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

Details

Iron Danger - The Story of the Story

by Silver, Thursday - March 07, 2019 01:45

The first dev blog for Iron Danger tells the story of the story.

The Story of The Story

26.2.2019 - Joel Sammallahti

vista of swamp

Some words from the writer

The development of Iron Danger is proceeding in an equal combination of fits and starts on the one hand, and leaps and bounds on the other. From the writer's point of view, it's an interesting time, as story beats and dialogue written months ago are finally seeing the light of the screen. All the while, I'm going back to those earlier pieces of writing, updating them to conform to changes in the game's mechanics, level design, characters, enemy roster, and so on: the script is constantly in flux. This is an interesting aspect of game writing: nothing is set in stone before the game is actually finished and shipped, but then again, without a solid script, there's no way to make progress on the actual levels in such a story-driven game. So I though this week we could have a look at the process of writing the story that we started building our actual levels on.


It Starts With a Secret Ingredient

When I first started working on Iron Danger, I talked with our lead designer about the story, and he gave me the kernel of it. He had been planning the game for a while, and wanted the story to have real emotional resonance, not just one event after another. His insight was that to guide our writing and design in a direction that would produce that resonance, the story should have an underlying metaphorical level: we should treat the story as an allegory of an inherently resonating core metaphor, like a symbolist painting or poem. I thought that was a brilliant approach, and we agreed immediately to construct the story on his core metaphor. We would not make the core metaphor explicit, but its dynamics would provide us with a foundation, on which to construct a coherent story and game experience. The events of the game and the supporting characters, seen from the point of view of our heroine, would symbolize experiences and forces, respectively, relating to this core metaphor.* What a kooky, romantic way to write a game!

conversation ui


Concept to Outline

The core metaphor provides us with an idea. But ideas are cheap, as any writer will go out of their way to tell you. So, the next step was to turn that idea into the outline of a story. For this purpose, I wrote up a sequence of major events over the course of the game, in a table with one column for gameplay events, and a second one for the underlying meta-level meaning. This table went through a number of revisions, until I was happy with the logic and structure of both sides. The meta-level was instrumental in making the surface-level story work: whenever I was in doubt about an event, or some element seemed off, I looked at the meta-level meaning, and used the logic of that side to figure out how to fix the surface-level problem.

When I was happy with my table, I turned it into a 3-page prose synopsis, divided into chapters. We dug into this synopsis with the lead designer and other members of the team, seeing how it could be improved, and translating it into an idea of the kinds of game content we would need. If I had invented a character or a place, someone was going to have to turn that into a game asset, after all. And if I had written an event, say "Kipuna collapses from pain", that implied another entry on our coders' and animators' checklists. Based on such considerations, we moved some of the characters and events around, fusing or removing extraneous ones, and tightening the whole skein a notch. Throughout it all, we kept the meta-level story in mind, to make sure we didn't lose sight of the emotional core of the game.


Scenic Route

Once we had a good story synopsis, it was time to further refine that into a list of actual scenes. We think of movies consisting of scenes, but games, of course, are made of levels. Right? Well, the approach we took was that from the story point of view, a level would consist of one or more gameplay scenes, interspersed by shorter, story-focused scenes that would just advance the narrative instead of serving up actual gameplay.

I went through the prose outline, splitting it up into scene-sized chunks. These I labeled either cutscenes, in which the player would more or less passively watch a short presentation of information, gameplay scenes, the meat and potatoes of actually running around, fighting enemies, and solving puzzles, and finally, interactive cutscenes in which the player would control the main character in exactly the same way as in core gameplay, but with the focus on dialogue. These were further arranged into levels, sequences of scenes that would carry from one to the next seamlessly, each level separated from the next by a cut implying the passing of time.

The spreadsheet containing all this became one of our main tools for managing the production, with required assets listed for each scene, and each one assigned to a specific level designer. Although we all collaborate on each other's levels, one person finally bears the responsibility of bringing the level to completion and making sure it hangs together. (Yes, I'm one of the level designers too, as are the lead designer, the producer, and the lead concept artist; nobody wears just one hat in our team.)


Two Steps Forward, One Giant Leap Back

Of course, no big project-even a moderately big one like ours-proceeds from point A to B in a straight line. Time and time again, I find myself going back to the story outline with revisions, and small changes to our level spreadsheet are always ongoing. That's how it should be, too! A game isn't a piece of writing, and its story isn't told when it's written down: it's only when we're actually playing what we've built that we can figure out what really works and what doesn't, and so we jump back frequently and make the changes to the story that our experience with the game, half-finished as it is, tells us are needed. I'll write another post about that, later! Now, I've got to fix some dialogue to take out references to an enemy we replaced with another one...

boat

*So... what is the core metaphor? It doesn't matter. If we've succeeded, the story will be entertaining and evocative, and if not, knowing would in no improve it. It's nothing unique-on the contrary, it's almost universal-and once you know it's there, you can probably guess when you've played the game, if we've done our jobs right.

Iron Danger

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

Details

ATOM RPG - 1.08 Update Teaser

by Silver, Wednesday - March 06, 2019 12:17

A new update for ATOM RPG lets us know what to expect from update 1.08, which will arrive March 20th.

1.08 Update Teaser

combat

Greetings, friends!

After a month and a half long development cycle, we are finally ready to announce the contents of the free update, which we are planning to release on March 20th.

We spent our time working on all aspects of the game. Because of this, the game will now feature the following:

  • Quality of Life improvements (with a whole lot of new features suggested to us by you, our players);
  • Mod creation tools as well as full mod support;
  • Additional balance rules that do not override previous ones, but add to them greatly;
  • New AI functions;
  • Weapon tweaks, including changes to AP consumption and to-hit formulae;
  • Tens of new characters with their unique dialogues and portraits;
  • New questline with two opposing factions;
  • Huge improvements to the stability of the game;
  • New visual effects and animations;
  • New graphic elements (status icons, items, game art);
  • New locations and random encounters;
  • Bug fixes galore;
  • New achievements.


We will also make another update-related post, with full info on balance changes. Be sure to express your opinion on the topic when it's ready.

Also, a special bullet point, aimed at our English-speaking audience: talented writer Scott Hamm of “Age of Decadence” and “Battle Brothers” fame is now helping us improve the English translation of the game. Thank you very much, Scott.

And thank you, our players, for sticking with us and ATOM!

ATOM RPG

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

Details

Eternity - Released

by Hiddenx, Tuesday - March 05, 2019 20:24

The action RPG Eternity: The Last Unicorn is now available:

Eternity – The Last Unicorn

Eternity – The Last Unicorn is a fully featured action RPG inspired by tales from Norse Mythology with classic game mechanics that bring a nostalgic feeling to players.

Aurehen is a young, pureblood Elf on a quest to free the last Unicorn. This creature has been captured and cursed by witches. Travel through mesmerizing locations, meet fantasy characters and fight to protect Elven immortality. Pursue Eternity!

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Key Features

  • Acquire new skills and abilities as you progress through the game.
  • A fixed-camera system that used to be commonly present in old-school games..
  • Level up your weapons and acquire new skills.
  • Discover and use new and more powerful items as you progress through the game.
  • Two playable characters: The young elf, Aurehen, and the Viking, Bior - each with a unique backstory and character abilities.
  • Over 12 hours of gameplay.
  • A soundtrack that captures the Nordic and fantastical themes of the wor

Eternity

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

Details

Vagrus: The Riven Realms - Companion Combat Guide Pt. 4

by Hiddenx, Tuesday - March 05, 2019 18:27

In part four of the companion combat guide the developers of Vagrus: The Riven Realms explain the different kinds of movement effects available for the characters on the battlefield:

Devlog #16 Companion Combat Guide - Part 4: Movement Effects

In the last part of the Combat Guide we took a look at defenses and their importance. This time, we'll delve into effects that involve movement or its restriction in one way or another.

Many Combat Skills in Companion Combat deal some kind of additional effect; some of these involve forced movement on the target or the denial of movement.

Push and Pull
As discussed before, positioning in Companion Combat is paramount, stemming from the fact that many Skills can only be used from either the front or back line. It thus follows that Skills that can change the position of an opponent are very useful as they can deny them an action by making them spend their turn to reposition. These effects are resolved immediately.

Push is the most common of such effects. When a Skills that has Push connects with a front row target and causes damage (even if the damage is mitigated to 0), the target is pushed to the back row if the Resist roll is failed. If there is another opponent that occupies that position, they both lose 1 Vitality.

Pull does the opposite, that is, when connected (and dealing damage as well as not resisted), the effect pulls a back row target to the front row. This can be used very effectively to pull squishier or dangerous ranged opponents to the front where your melee squad can punish them severely.

Control
Certain Skill effects allow you to control the actions of your opponents, though these almost always allow you only to move with the opponent, not to use their Skills. Still, if done well, this free movement can very effectively disrupt the enemy's plans, positioning adversaries into vulnerable places or denying them actions.

Immobilize and Stun
There are also effects that outright deny movement and even actions in general when applied (after the Skill that has this effect connects, causes damage, and the effect is not resisted). These effects can last several rounds at a time.

A successful Immobilize denies the target the use of their Move action. They can still use their Skills available from that position but this may severely limit what they can do. Certain characters - when immobilized in the right position - can be forced to pass their turn as they can no do anything. A successful Stun forces the target to pass its turn, thus denying them all actions. Stun is a powerful effect that is usually costly to use and is thus limited.

Overwatch and Obstacles
There are other effects that can alter movement and positioning. Overwatch is a Skill type that allows a character to set an attack on an empty position: when an opponent moves onto (or is moved onto) such a position, the attack is triggered. Though the opponent does not see which empty position is overwatched, fear of triggering it may result in avoiding movement altogether.

Obstacles occupy a position but do not act. They have Vitality and can be targeted. When defeated they simply disappear from the battlefield. Some Skills spawn Obstacles that can be used either to give your back-row characters Cover or deny certain positions on the enemy side (by placing the Obstacle there).

As you can see, these movement-influencing effects can be useful in a large variety of situations. Keeping select enemies controlled in such ways is a very viable tactic to achieve victory even against unfavorable odds.

We hope this was interesting to some of you and even useful for learning the workings of Companion combat in Vagrus. We might return with further Combat Guides in the future.

Thanks for reading and following us,
The Lost Pilgrims Team

Thanks Sztaszov!

Vagrus: The Riven Realms

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

Details

Stygian - Interview @PAX South

by Silver, Tuesday - March 05, 2019 13:31

Killatia interviews a developer for Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones.

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Killatia checks out this Lovecraft inspired RPG from Cultic Games and 1C Company Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones

Stygian

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

Details

Unsung Story - March Update

by Myrthos, Monday - March 04, 2019 20:52

The March update for Unsung Story brings us information on vertical slice number 2.

We're back with another Kickstarter Update and second in a series about our Vertical Slice progress.

This month, I'm not going to focus on level art, because I want to save that for next month. I think it's important that properly light everything and show off what the final game is going to look like.

Towards the end of last month's update, I said that in March we would show off more progress with the characters. During our internal meetings in February, we thought it would be cool to shift the format of the monthly updates and start doing more video blogs, which can better demonstrate features and gameplay. So bear with us, as our Art Department is still getting the hang of these during our first two attempts. 

We'll start with character customization. For this part, I enlisted the help of Craig, our lead technical character artist. Craig is going to show off the Female Human Archer along with some of the body and hair customization features. We didn't get a change to show multiple head swaps or skin tones, but those are also working.

Instead of a lot text they have made this visdeo about character customization:

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And this one is about the UI progress:

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Unsung Story

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

Details

ATOM RPG - ATOM RPG Indie Showcase interview

by Myrthos, Monday - March 04, 2019 11:59

In our second installment of the Indie Showcase, forgottenlor takes a look at ATOM RPG.

RPGWatch: Tell us a little about your background and experience?

Anton Krasilnikov: Before Atom I worked in marketing and also wrote some commercials. I came to the team right when the development started in 2015 as a writer and as a quest/lore designer.


RPGwatch: How long did it take you to develop your game?

Anton: It took us three years and a half. Before the Kickstarter campaign (that was held in 2017) we worked on the game in our free time. The large bulk of the work was done in about a year after the campaign.

ATOM RPG

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

Details

Battle Brothers - The Barbarians Part 1

by Silver, Sunday - March 03, 2019 10:24

A new dev blog for Battle Brothers focuses on the new Barbarian faction for the 'Warriors of the North' DLC.

Dev Blog #116: The Barbarians, Part I

Barbarians header

The upcoming ‘Warriors of the North’ DLC will not just bring more replayability and nordic equipment, but also introduce an entirely new human faction to the game. They’ll come with their own lore, armor and weapons, enemy types and fighting styles to pose a unique challenge to any mercenary commander. Let’s delve in!

Introduction
During the development of the ‘Beasts & Explorations’ DLC we had this idea for groups of wildmen roaming the northern parts of the map. Essentially, they’d be a different flavor of brigands and use existing assets. Except, maybe we could also squeeze in one new armor if we found the time? Or maybe even two? And so we decided that if we wanted to do them, we’d do them right and dedicate the time necessary to give them equipment and mechanics of their own, their own music, as well as contracts and events to convey their lore and the part they play in the world of Battle Brothers. So here we are, with a ‘Warriors of the North’ DLC in development.

banners

Many hundred years ago, in a different era, an empire of man spanned much of the known world. An empire, not of petty noble houses, but one of a dozen provinces, from the blistering sands of the south to the frozen tundra of the north, of a dozen peoples under one banner. As the empire spread further and further to the north, it became entangled in constant war with countless tribes of barbarians. Some were subjugated by force, some saw opportunity and swore allegiance, others faded into nothingness, but many more remained free; their constant raids and incursions a thorn in the side of the empire.

The empire, as you may know, eventually crumbled under its own weight, and feudal houses emerged from the dust to rule the lands in its stead. Yet, in the very north, the free barbarian tribes remained free still. For them, their own tribe is the beginning and the end, it is bliss in life and death, for their family is holy to them and they believe to sit with their ancestors if they meet their end in this life. They roam the harsh and infertile lands as they have been for hundreds of years, they raid to claim what they need, and they sacrifice their prisoners in bloody rituals to prove their worth to ancestors who ascended to be gods through their deeds in life. But they’re not beasts, and they’re not of alien minds like the greenskins. They’re humans; and while they speak a different tongue, they can be reasoned with, and they know the concepts of honor, and friendship, and truce and bartering. What they do, they have to do in order to survive in the unforgiving lands they inhabit. They follow their old ways to this day. They’re the warriors of the north.

Fighting Barbarians
The warriors of the north are ferocious fighters, but with scarce resources and a nomadic lifestyle, they usually don’t have access to the level of equipment that other human factions do. Many of them wear armor crafted from pelts and furs, and while some do boast metal armor, not least because it is a matter of prestige, the harsh climate of the north often has taken a toll on it over the years. Some barbarians even forego armor altogether, and instead paint their bodies with magic runes to call upon their ancestors to protect them from harm.

armour

Their weapons are likewise often crafted from wood and bone, some of the few materials readily available to them, or have been handed down through generations and show signs of wear. Generally, all barbarian weapons have somewhat lower base damage values, but a higher percentage of damage that ignores armor than comparable weapons in the game. Of course, all their armor and weapons are lootable and equippable by you, too – and there’ll be named variants as well!

weapons

In combat, a barbarian warband doesn’t bother with formations, and they have no backline with polearms or dedicated archers. They are a horde of ferocious warriors in a constant shuffle of everyone trying to bring their weapons to bear against the enemy. They’ll shower you with throwing weapons, they run towards your line, and they make ample use of the ‘Adrenaline’ perk to overwhelm you before you can even strike back. They don’t fear death the same as other humans do, so they are not easy to break, and getting hurt will only further incite their barbarian wrath.

Because a barbarian warband is but a loose collection of individuals, unified only in their tribal bonds and their willingness to fight for their place in both life and afterlife, their unit types are quite diverse in terms of equipment and perks, as you’ll see in a future dev blog.

Battle Brothers

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

Details

Outward - Combat Gameplay Video

by Silver, Sunday - March 03, 2019 09:02

@DSOGaming A new gameplay video for Outward focuses on combat mechanics.

Deep Silver and Nine Dots Studio have released a new gameplay trailer for their upcoming title, Outward, focusing on the game’s combat mechanics. Outward is an open-world fantasy adventure game featuring deep simulation and immersion.

[...]

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Outward

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

Details

Curious Expedition 2 - Announced

by Silver, Sunday - March 03, 2019 08:49

Roguelike Curious Expedition 2 has been announced and is set for a 2019 release.

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Curious Expedition 2 is the follow-up to the award-winning expedition simulation, which was selected by Rock, Paper, Shotgun as “Best Roguelike Game of 2016”, featuring a brand new art style, improved gameplay and vastly expanded content.
campfire scene
Features:

• Experience a new HD graphic novel art style and behold the most detailed and colorful look into our curious world of wonders yet.

• Join the legendary Explorer Clubs in their worldwide struggle for fame and glory. Increase your rank and uncover the secret benefits of these powerful societies.

• Enjoy deeper travel and combat mechanics that offer opportunities to express your personal play style.

• Witness the next era of procedural generation that will provide you with unique endless stories and characters, coming alive through their diverse personalities and relationship features.

• For the first time, compete against your friends and the rest of the world with the new multiplayer features.

Curious Expedition 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Historical
Genre: Roguelike
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Guilds Of Delenar - Will be available this March

by Hiddenx, Saturday - March 02, 2019 20:25

The strategy RPG Guilds Of Delenar will be available this march:

Guilds Of Delenar

Be the Guildmaster you were meant to be and lead your guild from a failing group of has-beens into an unstoppable force of powerful heroes that are praised by thy friends and feared by thy enemies. Govern everything from guild contracts, hero wounds, resource management, guild rivalries, and guild member satisfaction. Not to forget, Guild realm politics between nobles and the crown itself!

Progression:
As a top-down strategy RPG, Guilds of Delenar brings a new perspective for the genre by allowing you to create and take control of various guild heroes and customize or level up however you want. As the guildmaster, fight for control of towns by managing your heroes gear, taking on a plethora of quests, and commanding your warriors in tactical turn-based battles.

Combat:
It’s all in your hands! Will you create a guild that helps the common folk? one that seeks to root out evil? or one hell bent on destroying the competition? The choice is yours.

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Features:

  • Grow your guild from a rag tag group of level 1 weaklings into a regional powerhouse.
  • Hire and manage a variety of heroes.
  • Compete with the existing guilds in each town for superiority.
  • Fight off marauding parties that plague each town.
  • Send parties of your guildies to complete quests for the townsfolk.
  • Gear out your guild with Epic Loots from the procedually generated gear system.
  • Customize each hero through multiple talent trees.
  • Combo your heroes into up to 5 man parties.
  • Battle through dungeons full of baddies in order to protect the towns from their menacing evil.
  • Fight in a diverse set of tactical battlefields in a variety of tilesets.
  • Play at your skill level in one of our many difficulty levels.

Guilds Of Delenar

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

Details

Dark Quest 2 - Review @ Gamereactor

by Hiddenx, Saturday - March 02, 2019 10:21

Gamereactor has reviewed Dark Quest 2:

Dark Quest 2

We've been tasked with ridding the world of an evil wizard in this Hero Quest-inspired turn-based RPG.

There is something special about old school turn-based role-playing games where you're given the time to consider and optimise each move, and where if you failed you're forced to rethink your strategy. In this category of games, we find Dark Quest 2, recently released on Xbox One after having been available on PC (Steam) since 2016.

It appears to have been more than just a little inspired by the board game Hero Quest, in turn, inspired by Dungeons & Dragons. That's hardly a negative, of course, and in fact, the end result is rather entertaining. In Dark Quest 2 we're thrown into a rather straightforward story that serves no other purpose than to provide us with a reason to slay orcs, witches, and goblins. In this case, the benevolent ruler has died and an evil warlock and his hordes of vile creatures have moved into the castle.

[...]

Dark Quest 2 is one of those games that make us grateful that we're in the profession that we are. The hand-drawn and charming graphics, the cosy soundscape, and the addictive gameplay ensured that we were entertained. It's one of those unassuming games we could have easily missed if it weren't for the fact that we were sent a review code. It's the perfect little game if you're looking for something a bit more casual when the urge to play an RPG makes itself known and you don't have the luxury of a lot of time on your hands.

Score: 7/10

Dark Quest 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

To Light: Ex Umbra - Released

by Hiddenx, Friday - March 01, 2019 19:32

The J-RPG To Light: Ex Umbra has been released:

To Light: Ex Umbra

The once thriving Kingdom of Ecclesia is teetering on the edge of collapse. The King is gone, and the Queen has turned into a ruthless tyrant. But worst of all, the Princess is plagued by darkness. Physical, tangible darkness that destroys everything it touches. When she crosses paths with a young man driven by a mysterious force, they set out to find a way to defeat the darkness, and bring peace back to the kingdom. They must travel to the farthest reaches of the world to find the way they can finally be free. They must journey To Light.

Key Features

  • A story-driven classic JRPG
  • 20+ hours of gameplay
  • Beautifully illustrated cast of characters
  • 50+ custom enemies to encounter and challenge
  • Optional side quests to undertake
  • Positive allegorical message about overcoming darkness

To Light: Ex Umbra

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

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Silk - Historical RPG Silk on Kickstarter

by Forgottenlor, Friday - March 01, 2019 16:26

A kickstarter campaign has started for the historical adventure rpg game Silk.

Silk is a Sandbox RPG Adventure Game and a tribute to the late Mike Singleton, especially his groundbreaking 1984 game The Lords of Midnight.

With a lo-fi visual aesthetic and a lightweight interface that delivers endless engaging decisions, Silk is an innovative role-playing adventure like no other. Rise into glory by running your caravan from the Roman Empire to war-torn Three Kingdoms China. Defend yourself from bandits, sandstorms, and rebellions by hiring Advisors skilled in everything from battle to wayfinding. Fall in love with your own unique party of Advisors and the enchanting world of the Ancient Silk Road in 200 AD.

Recruit: Choose the Advisers to protect and advise your caravan

Do you want the best Guide, or someone who is skilled in both Wayfaring and Battle? Will you hire Merchants and Camels and transport goods, or Guards and Horses and raid other caravans? Will you befriend the locals with Ritegivers who can take part in the regional ceremonies, or defy the gods and go your own way?

Travel: Follow the paths between the great cities of the Silk Road

Find your own path through the wilderness, or travel faster by taking the more direct roads. However, you must keep your eyes on the road ahead - a rock fall, bandit ambush, or sandstorm might lie in your path. Do you face the danger, or turn back and take a longer route

Lead: Listen to your Advisors and make the best decisions you can

Everywhere you go, four of your party will suggest options. In the city, do you hire a Soldier and some Guards to protect you, or save the silver to buy more spices for trade? In the wilds, do you stop to hunt for food, or hope you can make it to town before your supplies run out?

Fate: Traverse the Silk Road, or raise an army to claim a Kingdom!

Each game begins by choosing a Heroic Destiny - will you be the first traveller to cross the entire length of the Silk Road and back? Or will you forge a trading empire that spans the world? Or will you raise an army and overthrow the Parthian Empire, or build your own kingdom?

 

 

 

Source: Kickstarter

Silk

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Historical
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

The Iron Oath - February Update

by Silver, Friday - March 01, 2019 07:26

The February update for The Iron Oath.

February Update

Posted by Curious Panda (Creator)

Hello backers! This past month we've done a lot of work on various features surrounding guild management, and designing the UI that goes with each.  We're still using placeholder graphics for the UI elements so unfortunately we can't share what these screens look like quite yet, but we'll be finalizing some of them in the upcoming months. 

The functionality for managing your Guild Council is now implemented. You can hire people for these roles by visiting towns, meeting potential candidates during missions or by assigning a retired character into one of the roles if they are capable of it. The jobs of the 3 councillors have undergone some small changes from when we last talked about it during our Kickstarter campaign. Each position has some passive benefits and tasks they can perform, with success and speed depending on their skill level.

  • The Battlemaster can trains troops by teaching positive traits, or help your soldiers get rid of unwanted ones. Recruiting a Battlemaster provides increased Experience gains for your roster, a larger selection of potential recruits in hubs, and insight into which traits a potential recruit has. 
  • The Emissary is your liaison between you and the different factions within Caelum. They can help you boost your reputation with a specific House, Faction, or the citizens within a city. Recruiting an Emissary provides you with more lucrative contract rewards, and gains the attention of the noble class, allowing you to accept contracts from a ruling House. 
  • The Spymaster comes in handy for uncovering plots by your enemies, or for tearing down the relationship between any two Houses and potentially inciting open war. Recruiting a Spymaster allows you to discern when a quest giver or potential recruit is trying to deceive you, and unlocks the ability to follow up on various rumors that they hear of through their underground networks. 

We've also been working on the report that your adviser will present to you at the end of each month. This report details your current financial situation and contains a complete breakdown of your income and expenses, which can be beneficial for future planning. The report also contains suggestions from your Guild Council if there are any pressing matters they want to bring to your attention. For example, if you are short on certain types of troops, have too many injured personnel, or if they have a suggestion on which House you should gain favor with, they will mention it to you in the report. 

We've also been updating our ability tool-tips to be more informative and streamlined. Our first pass on them had extra flavor text and details that made the important information difficult to quickly discern. We'll have more details on that in next months update!

In the art department we're continuing to finish designs and animations for the various enemies, here is a recently completed animation-set for the House Commander, once again done by @rafaelborven

Animation by @rafaelborven Animation by @rafaelborven

The Iron Oath

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

Details

February

Urtuk: The Desolation - Updated Demo and World Lore

by Silver, Thursday - February 28, 2019 11:03

A new update for Urtuk: The Desolation announces an updated demo and shares some world lore.

World's lore and Karwla

In Urtuk, the world is an old, destroyed and hostile place. Centuries ago, after the Giants' Extinction, a conflict arose because of the new Trilium resource - a mysterious liquid from the remains of the dead Giants. Since then, this valuable extract has been used to improve physics and health and for all kind of drugs.

There were 4 main factions which inhabited the world - pesky Scavengers, mutated Swampers, proud Valdor Empire, and mysterious Necrons. 

Besides all of these, a new hostile race emerges from the Undergrounds - the Karwla. 

Little is known about the Karwla, but rumor is that once they were normal people living under the surface and mutated to insect-humanoid species. 

When player begins his journey, the Karwla becomes active and erupts to surface, devouring everything in its way.. The appearance of this species expands from zone to zone and player must take great attention to where he wants to go next to avoid the hostility of Karwla.

Karwla continues to expand from west to east within world, the exact way how the player travels.In other words, the player is forced to move quickly to east but he might revisit old locations or even travel to undiscovered nodes back even when occupied by Karwla.

By normal circumstances, the difficulty of the enemy in the current player's zone is balanced but the Karwla is much more harder to defeat. So it poses a great risk for any encounter with this hostile species.

The second news is that we have updated our demo on itch.io! 

Major changes:

- UI/UX improvements

- Graphics improvements

- Gameplay mechanics updates - mainly new abilities, tweaks and balancing

 We also removed any dependencies like Java, C++ runtime, etc.. from the build! So when you download the game, you just run it.

Also we made builds for Linux in two versions - 32bit and 64bit.

That's it folks!

Urtuk: The Desolation

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

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To Light: Ex Umbra - Announced for March 1st

by Hiddenx, Tuesday - February 26, 2019 22:18

The story driven RPG To Light: Ex Umbra will be released on March 1st:

To Light: Ex Umbra

The once thriving Kingdom of Ecclesia is teetering on the edge of collapse. The King is gone, and the Queen has turned into a ruthless tyrant. But worst of all, the Princess is plagued by darkness. Physical, tangible darkness that destroys everything it touches. When she crosses paths with a young man driven by a mysterious force, they set out to find a way to defeat the darkness, and bring peace back to the kingdom. They must travel to the farthest reaches of the world to find the way they can finally be free. They must journey To Light.

Key Features

  • A story-driven classic JRPG
  • 20+ hours of gameplay
  • Beautifully illustrated cast of characters
  • 50+ custom enemies to encounter and challenge
  • Optional side quests to undertake
  • Positive allegorical message about overcoming darkness
Thanks Carnifex!

To Light: Ex Umbra

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

Details

Edge Of Eternity - Preview @InvisionCommunity

by Silver, Sunday - February 24, 2019 21:02

JRPG Edge of Eternity has been previewed by InvisionCommunity.

The in-game user interface currently is fairly basic but easy to understand. The development team has mapped out some plans for this to be improved upon and the upgrade system used in the game seems to be fairly straightforward and easy enough to understand. Players will make use of gems and gem shards which are slotted into a skill tree of sorts and this unlocks new abilities or stat boost. Additionally, new equipment can also be obtained and equipped as is the standard for any self-respecting RPG. Players can also harvest resources from the world itself by gathering from trees or mining rocky outcrops.

The voice acting in Edge of Eternity is surprisingly pretty good and both Daryon and Selene seem believable in their conversations. This combined with a great soundtrack is good news for the game since its exceptionally good music will definitely keep players happy throughout the story – Much like how Final Fantasy titles are known for their great soundtracks.

[...]

Thanks Farflame!

Edge Of Eternity

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

Details

Outward - Interview @Gamingbolt

by Silver, Sunday - February 24, 2019 20:57

The developers of Outward were interviewed by Gamingbolt.

What exactly do the dynamic defeat scenarios in Outward entail?

When the player is defeated, there is a variety of different scenarios that can happen depending on the area where the player was defeated and which type of enemy was the closest when they were defeated. Scenarios can be very simple, such as a slide explaining you were found by a passing hunter and brought back to the nearest town, or can be elaborate, such as being captured as a slave by bandits. Where the player respawns and in which condition varies greatly, and it sometimes can even be beneficial. Whenever the players are KOed, we want them to nervously ask themselves “Oh, what will happen to me this time?”

Spellcasting in Outward seems to be centred on step-by-step approach- can you talk to us about what exactly this entails, and how it’ll function?

Every important spell require some pre-requisite to be met, usually implying a step by step setup before the final delivery. For instance, to cast a rune spell, the player must equip the appropriate magical tome called a Lexicon, and cast the correct runes in the right order. Another example would be a fire sigil, which requires you to expand a firestone to place a magic circle on the floor, and then casting a spark while standing in that magic circle to be able to cast a fireball. Everything feels more involved that way, and it leads to exploration in how to cast those spells and how to efficiently pull them off in a fight.

In fact, even melee special skills follow that formula, requiring from the player some specific conditions such as being under an enraged status or a focus status to do skills such as the Predator Leap or the Precise Strike. The key to win in Outward is preparation, and our skills reflect that.

[...]

Thanks Farflame!

Outward

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

Details

Mage's Initiation - Review @GamingRespawn

by Silver, Sunday - February 24, 2019 20:55

Gaming Respawn has reviewed Mage's Initiation: Reign of the Elements and found it enjoyable.

There are a few issues that I had found when playing Mage’s Initiation: Reign of the Elements. These mainly revolve around movement, the control system and the fighting system, but there is also an issue with the graphics being quite poor. These issues definitely do not outweigh the great points to the game. Mage’s Initiation is extremely bright, colourful, artistically creative, and it has a great storyline. The main part of the storyline that I enjoyed was the script for the game. I thought it was extremely detailed and branched out to give the player a huge amount of backstory. Mage’s Initiation: Reign of the Elements presents players with a challenging and magical experience.

Thanks Farflame!

Mage's Initiation

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

Details

Battle Brothers - Nordic Equipment

by Silver, Saturday - February 23, 2019 19:33

A new dev blog for Battle Brothers takes a look at nordic equipment.

Dev Blog #115: Nordic Equipment

It’s Friday again! This week we’ll take a look at some of the new nordic and rus inspired equipment and player banners coming with the ‘Warriors of the North’ DLC. Just keep in mind that things are still in active development, so we can’t show everything that is to come just yet, and things may still change. Onwards!

New Banners
Coming with the ‘Warriors of the North’ DLC are two new player banners. One is more inspired by scandinavian vikings, the other by rus vikings. Of course you’ll be able to paint your shields with the motif of these new banners as well.

new banners

Many of you supported us beyond the asking price of the ‘Beasts & Exploration’ DLC by getting the Supporter Edition. We’re very thankful, and your support has shown how much you appreciate us creating more content for Battle Brothers. We’ll also be offering a Supporter Edition for the new DLC as well. There’ll be more details at a later time, but for now, here’s a preview of the bonus banner and painted shields that’ll be included.

painted shield

New Wardog
The harsh climate of the northern tundra and hills is home to a hardier breed of wardog, the warhound. Bigger and stronger than its southern brethren, it can bring a grown man down on its own, and take more of a beating, but it is also slower and therefore less suited for chasing down runners. You’ll face the warhound in battle, and you’ll also be able to purchase your own at northern settlements.

wardogs

New Helmets
If your mercenary company operates in the north, and perhaps if it even hails from the north by virtue of choosing the ‘Northern Raiders’ company origin, you may want your men to look the part. The DLC will introduce various new helmets inspired by historical nordic and rus designs. Most of them will also come in extra fancy named variants to hunt for.

new helmets

Battle Brothers

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

Details

Starpoint Gemini 3 - Annnounced

by Myrthos, Thursday - February 21, 2019 21:50

The third installment of Starpoint Gemini has been announced.

LGM Games officially announces Starpoint Gemini 3

A BRAND-NEW TITLE IN THE FRANCHISE

Zagreb, Croatia, February 21, 2019. LGM GamesTM, creators of the Starpoint Gemini franchise, are proud to announce a brand-new title.

The new installment is an open-world space action single-player RPG that puts the player in the cockpit of Captain Jonathan Bold, a space adventurer travelling the vast universe of Starpoint Gemini 3®.

For the first time in the franchise, Starpoint Gemini 3® introduces 3D, animated NPCs that players can interact with, and this time the flight path leads beyond Gemini as they get to explore two new planetary systems, visiting various venues, from pubs with shady clientele to high-tech facilities and noisy, glitzy nightclubs.

Along with the action-packed space battles, Starpoint Gemini 3® comes with an array of novel possibilities. With the help of ADAH, a digital consciousness that runs the ship's computer, players can operate the ship's drone and accomplish tasks they wouldn't otherwise be able to do.

The immersive gameplay and the absorbing story of Starpoint Gemini 3® takes the players on an unforgettable adventure.

Starpoint Gemini 3 key features

  • Adrenaline-packed dogfighting combat

  • Brand new tri-system universe layout

  • Immersive gameplay and an absorbing storyline with a copious quantity of encounter quests, characters and activities

  • Detailed visitable interiors

  • New out-of-ship drone control and exploration of space structures

  • Rich, versatile free-roam content

  • Modular ship upgrading system

A series of video development diaries

A series of Starpoint Gemini video development diaries on YouTube channel, Facebook page, Twitter profile and a textual development blog on LGM GamesTM official website at https://lgmgames.net will give fans and the community the opportunity to stay tuned for news of the game's development stages.

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Starpoint Gemini 3

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

Details

Vagrus: The Riven Realms - Companion Combat Defenses

by Myrthos, Thursday - February 21, 2019 11:29

In the most recent development blog for Vagrus: The Riven Realms, the defenses of comabt companions are discussed.

In the last part of the Combat Guide we took a look at Companion Actions, including moving, Skills, and their combinations. This time, we'll delve into defensive stats and their importance.

Companion combat is cruel in Vagrus and in general you can not heal during it. Your defenses are your main way to mitigate damage, so understanding how they work is very important.

Basics

Vitality (VIT) is the stat that your fighters lose each time they are hit. When depleted, the Companion falls into a Downed state. When Downed, they can not act (they do not receive their turns) but can be targeted and damaged. They have their Downed Vitality for when they are Downed. If that, too, is depleted, they are Out of Action, which means long-term wounds and potentially death. Therefore, it behooves the player to protect Downed Companions as best they can. That said, there are a few methods to bring back Downed characters into action but none of these are easy or cheap.

More at the link.

Vagrus: The Riven Realms

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

Details

Eternity - Launches on march 5th

by Myrthos, Thursday - February 21, 2019 11:24

The fixed-camera JRPG, Eternity: The Last Unicorn launches on march 5th.

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Eternity: The Last Unicorn revels in classic action-RPG mechanics, weaving a fantastical tale that's steeped in Norse mythology and the struggles with immortality. Long ago, unicorns brought about immortality, yet now they are all but extinct, with one last cursed member still in existence. Aurehen of Alfheim is tasked with the weighty obligation of saving the waning immortality of her fellow elves before it fully evaporates, all the while lifting the curse on the last unicorn.

True to its old-school RPG roots, Eternity: The Last Unicorn embraces the fixed camera stylings of yore, offering players deep skill and weapon progression as they explore the land of Alfheim. Everything from the world's gods and mythology, to its imposing creatures (Jotun and Fenrir and Gullveig, oh my!) is immersed in rich, Nordic folklore, making this the perfect excuse to brush up on your rune readings.

Key Features:

  • Two playable characters: The young elf, Aurehen, and the Viking, Bior - each with a unique backstory and character abilities.
  • Over 12 hours of deep action-RPG gameplay to explore
  • Fixed camera system reminiscent of old-school RPGs
  • Skill, weapon, and ability progression tied into exploration and character growth
  • An original soundtrack built to convey both the Nordic and fantastical themes of Eternity

Eternity

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

Details

Hero-U - Version 1.5 Released

by Silver, Thursday - February 21, 2019 09:21

A new patch for Hero-U fixes some quality of life issues.

Version 1.5 of Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption is Live!

Version 1.5 of Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption released!


We have just released Version 1.5 of Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption. This is a small change in nomenclature – We might have called it Patch 5 previously – but it contains some big quality of life improvements to the game.

Graphical version of this announcement.[hero-u.com]

Version 1.5 includes:

  • Added a version label to the Start Menu, especially for GOG players who do not get automatic updates.
  • Fixes to the “pacifist” route against the Wraith King.
  • Using the Null runestone against the Wraith King will now behave more logically.
  • Thomas can only be given the One and Only Ring once.
  • Cleaned up an inconsistency with “Lockpicking” and “Tool Use” in the user interface.
  • Improved appearance of the Tentacle Monster.
  • Tweaked sound effects and particle effects on monsters.
  • Fix combat bug with traps and messages not reporting the same damage amount.
  • The Cloaker in the Catacombs now properly registers as magical.
  • Only allow Shawn to greet the Librarian once per day.
  • Fixes to bulk sales of the Dried Fish and Empty Wine Bottles.
  • Tweak to early game quests and sound effects.
  • Fix nonsensical tooltips for some late-game monsters.
  • Hundreds of typos and minor scripting bugs, pointed out by our players on Steam and on the forums. Thanks, everyone!
  • A newer, shinier Tentacle Monster.


Steam will automatically update Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption to the latest build when you start the game.

Hero-U

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

Details