Vikings: Wolves of Midgard - Interview
Posted: Jul 27, 2016, 12:53 am by RPGWatch
Gamewatcher has interviewed the lead programmer of the Action RPG Vikings: Wolves of Midgard:
Learn more about Vikings: Wolves of Midgard in this interview with the lead programmer
When you think about action RPGs in the style of Diablo 3, you probably don't think of a Norse setting. Fortunately, Games Farm are bringing the magic of the Vikings to a video game near you! Vikings: Wolves of Midgard is an action RPG set in a fantastical world based on Viking history and Norse mythology.
We sat down with Jan Turan, Lead Producer at Games Farm to talk about what sets Vikings apart from the other action RPGs out there and what to expect from the game when it launches.
GameWatcher: Could you just introduce yourself for us, please?
Jan Turan: My name is Jan Turan, I am from Kosice, Slovakia. I am the lead programmer at Games Farm Studios.
GameWatcher: Please give us a brief overview of your new game.
Jan Turan: We are working on Vikings - Wolves of Midgard, an action RPG based on Norse mythology. Vikings has been in development for one and a half years, currently. Right now, we are aiming for launch next year, early next year... maybe even a little bit later, but I think early next year for all the major platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, even Steam OS/Linux and so on.
GameWatcher: What's different about this game compared to other games in the genre?
Jan Turan: That's one of the reasons why we decided on this Viking setting, it's a new setting in the genre. Everybody is doing post-apocalyptic, fantasy or sci-fi. We started developing one and a half years ago and now everyone is doing Vikings, everybody is doing Norse mythology. We never expected the Vikings setting to become so mainstream. I think the popularity of the Viking genre is starting to increase because of that TV show.
Styx: Shards of Darkness - Interview
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 06:53 pm by RPGWatch
GamingBolt has interviewed Julien Desourteaux, Cyanide Studio Game Director and Lead Level Designer of Styx: Shards of Darkness:
How does Styx: Shards of Darkness improve on the original game, especially in terms of the sequences that players will engage in?
In the level of the signed the major improvements are diversity in the missions. There you have some investigation to do, listen to some dialogue to learn something; sometimes we have missions where you have to be undetected. It's all about diversity to have a better player experiences during the game.
What can you tell us about the RPG elements in this iteration?
With the RPG mechanics, we still have the skill tree. We have cloning, crafting, assassination, detection, and five or six branches. It's up to the player to choose what play style you want to have. So by choosing a branch you set up the character. And as well we have some new powers you will have later in the game, because you will have a new material that can give you special abilities.
We have some exciting news for our final days of the campaign! Tomorrow we're going to host a livestream on Twitch with some of the original System Shock devs including Warren Spector, Paul Neurath, Robb Waters, Tim Stellmach, and some of our Nightdive folks. Here's the tentative schedule:
Tuesday, 7/26 (all times are in PDT)
1:00pm - System Shock Pre-Alpha Demo playthrough with NDS folks (Stephen Kick, Jason Fader, Robb Waters, and more)
1:30pm - Otherside Entertainment folks join in for commentary (Warren Spector, Paul Neurath, and Tim Stellmach)
2:00pm - 4:00pm - System Shock 1 playthrough with commentary
On top of that we'll be doing a 24 hour Twitch stream from Wednesday at noon (PST) to Thursday at noon, right up to the final minutes of the Kickstarter and a bit beyond. We're still finalizing the schedule and will have an update tomorrow morning with details :-)
Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem - Character Customization
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 06:53 pm by RPGWatch
In a new update for Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem, information is provided on character customization and the ammo modifier system. This is the part on character customization.
Hello everyone, I'm Patrick, Lead Character Artist of the project.
Today, I'd like to report our progress on a feature important to us, and I'm sure, very important to you : the character customization.
As expected since the Kickstarter, you'll soon be able to choose the hairstyle, hair color, eyes color, and skin color of your character.
And, this is a surprise : body types ! So, between four models : medium, heavy, strong and lightweight, you'll be able to set the character that suits you best ! These settings will also be available for the upcoming female character model.
Please, watch this video to see our progress :
The Cathedral's pirate-priests roam the House in church-tanks, stealing idols and holy texts, forcing innocent victims to renounce their gods and commit blasphemies. When they have driven all other worshippers away, they return to the main Cathedral and co-opt the god into their swollen pantheon.
The Cathedral itself is a miles-tall edifice, a jagged cluster of Gothic architecture on tank-treads huge enough to crush a castle. Unfortunately, the Cathedral's heyday is behind it - the engines are broken, and none of their many gods have the power to make it work again.
But in the tallest spire, the Omnipope schemes. One day the pirate-priests will reclaim their glory and be feared throughout the House once more. One day.
Legends of Ellaria - Version 0.5.30
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 06:53 pm by RPGWatch
A new update for Legends of Ellaria is coming in a week or two.
After a few weeks of silence, we come back with news and additions to LoE. Since we added bits and parts to LoE's engine, we added enough changes to break the save game, so we took our time adding some features we didn't plan.
So here's what's coming to version 0.5.30:
We completely overhauled the city life and your citizen's behaviour.
Your city now generates income depending on your civilians and not as a fixed income
You can now build barracks. When you build it, up to 3 soldiers will follow you and help you.
You can now build the market, which will add a fixed number of resource based on visitors
The tavern now adds gold at the end of the day based on your population size
The blacksmith is important for generating the refined Iron resource
There are more indoors and indoor civilians
Each building now have a meaning and is needed for your progress
You can now command following soldiers with the F1, F2, F3, F4 keys by building the barracks
Building certain buildings requires Rift Stone, which you'll need to obtain by exploring your map
Your HUD compass shows you locations of interest whenever you're near them.
But most important, Greenside now contains caves, goblin villages and places that you need to explore to advance your city. We added Rift Stone cave, which you'll need to clear to retrieve Rift Stone, so that you'll be able to build the barracks. Other locations contains power ups, gold or just cool places to explore.
Ghost of a Tale - Now Early Access
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 12:52 pm by RPGWatch
Ghost of a Tale has released onto early access on both Steam and GOG. It is an action RPG where you play a mouse, who is a minstrel, during medieval times.
About This Game
Ghost of a Tale is an action-RPG game in which you play as Tilo, a mouse and minstrel caught up in a perilous adventure. The game takes place in a medieval world populated only by animals, and puts an emphasis on immersion and exploration. It features stealth elements, disguises, conversations with allies and enemies, and quests.
You'll be able to explore the secrets of Dwindling Heights Keep and navigate its dangers. Tilo is not much of a fighter, so stealth and nimbleness are your allies when confronted with enemies twice your size. Talk to the characters you meet and leave no stone unturned in your quest to find Merra, your true love...
About the team:
Ghost of a tale is developed by a very small team. Lionel "Seith" Gallat does 90% of the art, design and coding. Paul Gardner is the game's writer and an experienced game designer. Cyrille Paulhiac does coding and develops tools. Jeremiah Pena is the game's composer, while Nicolas Titeux is responsible for sound design.
Now, in an interview with Edge Magazine, Sweeney has become even more direct in his criticisms, claiming that future updates to Windows 10 could serve to erode the usefulness of third-party applications and storefronts like Steam.
"There are two programming interfaces for Windows and every app has to choose one of them," he said. "Every Steam app - every PC game for the past few decades - has used Win32. It's been both responsible for the vibrant software market we have now, but also for malware. Any program can be a virus. Universal Windows Platform is seen as an antidote to that. It's sandboxed - much more locked down."
"The risk here is that, if Microsoft convinces everybody to use UWP, then they phase out Win32 apps. If they can succeed in doing that then it's a small leap to forcing all apps and games to be distributed through the Windows Store. Once we reach that point, the PC has become a closed platform. It won't be that one day they flip a switch that will break your Steam library - what they're trying to do is a series of sneaky manoeuvres. They make it more and more inconvenient to use the old apps, and, simultaneously, they try to become the only source for the new ones."
While that could technically be true, how could Microsoft ever hope to bring down something as gargantuan as Steam, either intentionally or inadvertently? Sweeney believes they have a plan for that.
"Slowly, over the next five years, they will force-patch Windows 10 to make Steam progressively worse and more broken. They'll never completely break it, but will continue to break it until, in five years, people are so fed up that Steam is buggy that the Windows Store seems like an ideal alternative. That's exactly what they did to their previous competitors in other areas. Now they're doing it to Steam. It's only just starting to become visible. Microsoft might not be competent enough to succeed with their plan, but they're certainly trying."
Sweeney has previously said that the PC has remained at the vanguard of graphics innovation because it's an open platform. Microsoft's supposed attempts to turn Windows into a closed platform risks neutering new breakthroughs such as VR before they've had a chance to flourish.
Some people like their games soft. Others like them hard. And let's be honest; there's nothing that can beat a good, hard...video game. And Eidos Montreal feel the same way too.
According to a article over at Gamespot, the upcoming Deus Ex: Mankind Divided will aim to please players from a wide assortment of skill levels, offering heavily tailored down challenge for those who want to cruise through, right up to a new super difficult mode dubbed I Never Asked for This.
Geared towards the most hardcore of hardcore, I Never Asked for This (recalling the iconic phrase from Deus Ex: Human Revolution) pumps up the difficulty the absolute hardest and nullifies reloads on death. That means you can save, load up your file later, and so on. But if you die your entire save file is flushed and you'll be forced to start again. One life, one run. That's all you get.
Witcher 3 - Enhanced Edition Mod
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 06:42 am by RPGWatch
@PCGamer Ever want Dark Souls difficulty in The Witcher 3? One modder did and has produced the Enhanced Edition Mod. PCGamer got this story from VG24/7.
While rumours of an official Enhanced Edition were quashed by CD Projekt Red back in January, the developer recently confirmed a Game of the Year iteration is in the works. The Enhanced Edition mod is independent of both, but alters things like the game's default stats and abilities, meditation and alchemy settings, equipment weight and durability, and talent caps and levelling, among a number of other things. The mod also makes significant changes to the game's combat and damage systems and modifiers-a new "Hardcore Enemies" setting, for example, lifts foes 11 levels above the player. Yikes.
The list of changes the mod makes is pretty exhaustive-full details of which can be found via its Nexus page. If you're interested, you might also fancy checking out YouTube person Origier does Gaming's extensive overview, which details everything from installation instructions to how said changes affect your game.
In the last update, I mentioned the new semi-mouse support for control options and a much improved encounter system for monsters/foes. I have spent a lot of time ironing these two features out to include a better interface experience and build a randomized system that not only includes monsters, but also regular and really rare loot items
Dungeon Rushers - Early Access Review @ TGG
Posted: Jul 26, 2016, 12:32 am by RPGWatch
TGG has reviewed the Early Access tactical RPG Dungeon Rushers:
Dungeon Rushers PC review - A pretty good heroic-parody tactical RPG
Have you ever wanted to enjoy those classic table-top RPGs but you don't really understand the rules? Good news guys, "Dungeon Rushers" has got you covered!
Taking its cues from the simpler table-tops like "Dungeons and Dragons" or "Heroquest: Dungeon Rushers" is a fast-paced dungeon crawler that has two-stage gameplay; top-down dungeon crawling and classic turn-based battle stages.
"Dungeon Rushers" plays exactly like you would expect it to as well. The dungeons are made up of singular tiles. And you can choose which direction you move in, uncovering more of the map as you go. And every time you step on to a new (undiscovered) tile the invisible dice is thrown, and you have a random chance of meeting an enemy (or group of), traps or a random event. These events will give you a buff of some description and quickly become your win condition - get lucky with your items, and you will crush all before you. Get unlucky though and you will have to reload due to deaths. The system's random nature makes every single dungeon really fun, and it adds to the games replayability as no two runs are ever exactly the same.
In overall, Dungeon Rushers is a good game that is borderline great. There is a lot of content here to enjoy and characters that are entertaining and funny for all the right reasons. Unfortunately, it is let down by a combat system that is too simplistic to be truly enjoyable - time and development will hopefully alleviate this issue as the game progresses through early-access.
RPS - Gen Next #1: Benefits of Procedural Gen
Posted: Jul 25, 2016, 12:22 pm by RPGWatch
RPS looks at the future of video gaming in their new four part series, Generation Next. Part one looks at how procedural generation could benefit games, specifically RPGs, in the future.
Mark Johnson is the developer of Ultima Ratio Regum, an ANSI 4X roguelike in which the use of procedural generation extends beyond the creation of landscapes and dungeons to also dynamically create cultures, practices, social norms, rituals, beliefs, concepts, and myths. This is the first in a four part series examining what generating this kind of social detail can bring to games.
In Critical Gaming: Interactive History and Virtual Heritage, a 2015 scholarly work by Erik Champion, a very intriguing point is made about the books in the Elder Scrolls series. In considering the interactive options given to the player, and the detail of the "lore" books the player can encounter, Champion argues that the books in the Elder Scrolls series describe a far richer world than the player is actually able to engage with. He proposes that the fiction in these works speaks to a social world with a grander possibility space, and a set of more detailed cultural, social and religious elements, than the fiction the player is able to create through their actions. Elder Scrolls books speak of remarkable unique stories with a tremendous scope of actors, events, cultures, and places; within the play of the games themselves, however, it is difficult to break out of several core gameplay loops of combat, conversation and exploration, to experience or even create the kinds of stories and social worlds we read about in the game's libraries.
As well as feeding into this disconnect from gameplay, all this background world detail was hand-written, once, by the game's developers. As deep and rich as many of the tales these books tell are, they remain the same no matter how many times the player starts the game. Few players will ever return to a previously-read book a second time, making their reading a one-off activity done at the start of the game, and even then something that most players gloss over, fully aware of the lack of immediate relevance to their character's experience that most books (except for "skill books" that raise your stats) actually have.
The intersection of these two concerns - their disconnect from the gameplay, and their unchanging nature - severely limits the social detail of the Elder Scrolls world to being only incidental, a backdrop, a player-created side-quest, or something to be considered once and then entirely forgotten. But what if such sociocultural detail could always be new and fresh, and always be actually reflected in the world(s) the player explores? Would players want to engage with this kind of detailed and always-distinctive worldbuilding, and how could worlds with those sorts of elements affect a player's actual experiences instead of being nothing more than background reading?
Mass Effect - A History
Posted: Jul 25, 2016, 12:22 pm by RPGWatch
GameSpot has published a video history of Mass Effect, including lots of little details you may not have known. Says GameBanshee:
GameSpot has published a new video that charts the history of the Mass Effect franchise, from its beginnings as Project SFX, a pitch from Casey Hudson that included heavy online elements that would end up being dropped, all the way to the ending controversy for Mass Effect 3.
The video concludes with some speculation on Mass Effect Andromeda and the writer's wish for a title that doesn't include an epic story but only focuses on character relationships. I'm personally in favor of that, but I have the feeling BioWare might be conservative in that department after the reaction to Dragon Age II.
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