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Shroud of the Avatar - Conversation & Lock System
Posted: Jan 18, 2017, 03:22 am by RPGWatch
Portalarium's latest newsletter explains the changes to the conversation window and lock system for Shroud of the Avatar.
New NPC Conversation Window
In Release 38, we are updating the conversation window used for interacting with NPCs to make it both more immersive and easier to use. For immersion, we are hiding almost all of the other interface elements, including all other chat and the hotbar. We are also placing the chat in the very middle of the screen where you are looking at the NPC in order to keep you focused on the interaction. We have also tried to keep the interface itself to as minimal as possible with very few borders and as much transparency in the elements as we can.
For ease of use, we are placing all the keywords in a toolbar at the bottom of the window. This toolbar will include every keyword you can use with the NPC including keywords relating to quests you are currently on and keywords learned from past conversations with that NPC. This saves you from having to scroll back to find keywords you might not remember. There will also be some hidden keywords to discover though, so exploration will still be rewarded. Above you can see the work in progress as of today.
As you adventure throughout Novia and the Hidden Vale, you'll find that many keys now have a chance to break on each use.
Keys may have a good chance to break (such as the keys for the locked passages that interconnect underground scenes and the cages found in wilderness scenes throughout Novia), while others break about half the time (such as the key for the Kiln Cistern Alchemist's Workshop), and some will never break (such as special keys required for quests).
When a key breaks, a message will appear in your chat window telling you so: "Your key () broke during use."
If you use a lock for which you have several of the same key, only one key will break. (In other words, not all keys of that type will break, only one at a time.)
If there is ever a situation where more than one key type can be used to open a lock, the system will use a key that never breaks when one is available, otherwise it will use a key that has the greatest chance to break. (Note that we don't have this situation in the game yet, but an example would be "Prison Cell A" opened by either "Key for Prison Cell A" or "Warden's Key.")
Shadow Tactics - Review @PCGamer
Posted: Jan 18, 2017, 03:22 am by RPGWatch
PCGamer review Shadow Tactics and find it one of the greatest stealth games of the last decade.
Every enemy encounter is a piece of a huge clockwork puzzle, all orderly and repetitive. To succeed, you need to disrupt the pattern. The fun part is creating chaos with the toy box of abilities and experimenting with them. There's a lot of joy to be found in playing around with different strategies, tearing out the best parts of failed attempts and stitching them together until you have one that finally works. The ability to save anywhere makes experimentation easier, and a timer lets you know when it's been a while since you last saved.
Sometimes a problem requires lateral thinking. In snowy areas guards take notice of suspicious footprints, which can ruin a plan if you're not careful. However, you can also exploit guards' inquisitiveness and lay ambushes for those that blindly follow trails into empty corners.
Some problems demand teamwork, and that's where Shadow Mode comes in. This lets you assign each character a job and activate them all at once. Used correctly, Shadow Mode lets you sweep away large groups of enemies in swift, decisive moves. It's a thrill to hit a button and see your minions move in tandem.
Plenty of eye candy
Greetings to all RPG lovers and fans of Dungeons of Aledorn. After a longer pause, we gathered enough material to release a new update. Although it's far from finished, the project is still ongoing and right now we are aiming for a beta in the summer 2017. The beta should contain all core game mechanics and the main storyline including quests, equipment and battles. Please be patient as it is our first really big project and that is why our promised time schedule is more a guess than anything else.
Back to the content of this update. We have finished a new location called "Voland", the second largest city in the game located on an archipelago, specifically on The Sandemar's Island. You can look at some awesome screenshots below. We also added short videos - the first one shows a cycle of day and night in the game, the other is introducing one of many dungeons.
The day and night cycle graphics demonstrated on Condra, the pirate hideout shown in the previous updates. Condra only needs to be populated with NPCs and treasures to become our first fully completed location. However, this final step requires a specific location editor which should be finished until February.
Torn Tales - Released
Posted: Jan 17, 2017, 09:22 pm by RPGWatch
The Adventure RPG Torn Tales has been released today:
Lead your party of 3 heroes on their quest to repair the torn pages of folklore. Evil has destroyed the tales you love. Hack monsters and slash enemies throughout the Torn Tales in this real time squad based RPG.
You will wield the powers of Robin Hood, Snow White and Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde as they fight together in the dark landscape assembled by the evil Bookbinder. He has bound enemies from across the fabled lands to stop you, so be ready for the unexpected.
Master a rich tree of abilities to upgrade your characters. Choose load-outs that maximise your team's total fighting potential. Swap lead character in combat to battle harder. Explore the lands of lore & fable, collecting loot with a vast array of variations from Geppetto's Gold Ring of Shielding to Ahab's Amulet of Fury.
Hone your skills and try out new ability combos in the endless Arena mode. See how you compare to the best players in the world through the global leaderboards.
Real time squad based RPG - lead a party of three heroes with distinct yet complementary skills.
Set in the torn landscape of classic folk tales - where evil has infected the worlds of fantasy as we know them.
Deep skill tree - unlock and upgrade the unique abilities of each character such as Hyde's madness or Snow White's poison apple.
Loot - thousands of possible artefacts to collect that boost your skills/abilities with unique combinations.
Character swap mechanic - change your tactics mid-battle for different strategies and abilities.
5 Unique realms - visit the realms stolen from the tales and battle a variety of monsters unique to the world. Reach the end and defeat the bosses that you know so well.
Arena mode - endless non-stop battles with a vast array of monsters and enemies.
Global leaderboards - compete with players around the world in the arena mode to see who can endure the longest.
Over the years, Nihon Falcom has become a well-known and loved developer to both fans of action and RPGs alike, due to the mix of great gameplay and narrative they spin into each of their creations. What's interesting about the latest Falcom title publisher XSEED Games has brought over, however, is that unlike the frantic action of the Ys games (or the more narrative focus of its later entries) or the RPG-bent of the Trails series, Xanadu Next has an older bent to it. So how does that hold up in today's era, even with some minor upgrades to run better on today's modern systems?
While the gamepad controls aren't quite up to par, the core gameplay of Xanadu Next is still exceptionally solid and is a great window into the earlier development aspects of Nihon Falcom before their more recent releases as of late. Western gamers never got the chance to play the "true" version of this title, getting cut-down releases of the game, so getting the real thing is a joy. If you have a PC and mouse handy, it's worth your time to enjoy some good, classic action RPG goodness.
Wizardry 5 - SNES version now in English & uncensored
Posted: Jan 17, 2017, 03:12 am by RPGWatch
@IndieRetroNews they report that a new English translation of Wizardry V has been produced and fully uncensored for the SNES.
@VizionGamer contacted us recently about a new English translation and fully uncensored version of Wizardry V : The Heart of the Maelstrom that had been announced via the Romhacking website. This game which is a dungeon crawler and available to play on an SNES, was already released in North America but however decent it was, it didn't the better qualities of the version that was released in Japan. All references to nudity, alcohol, blood, violence, and religion were replaced in the North American version and this hack not only keeps the English intact but removes the censorship so players can experience the game as it was intended.
Also as noted by RomHacking This hack translates the switch/options screen in the Japanese version of Wizardry V: Heart of the Maelstrom into English. It also changes the default character names, the default language, and the default character set to use when naming your characters. The Japanese version of Wizardry V already had the ability to display text in either English or Japanese, but English players had to navigate the untranslated switch menu, which had five different switches for changing different parts of the text from one language to another. This hack combines those into a single switch that controls all of the in-game text. Additionally, several grammar errors in the game's text were corrected.
Two Worlds III - Interview @ Loutrage
Posted: Jan 17, 2017, 03:12 am by RPGWatch
Loutrage has interviewed Dirk P. Hassinger, a member of the Reality Pump team, about the next DLCs of Two Worlds II, Two Worlds III, Sacrilegium and Raven's Cry:
Interview Dirk P. Hassinger - Reality Pump Hi ! It's been a while since we heard something about the Two Worlds Franchise ! Why did you come back with three add-ons instead of directly release Two Worlds III ?
During the concept development of Two Worlds III, the most team members have no tasks. It makes best sense to employ them with DLCs for Two Worlds II while another part of the team creates the concept for Two Worlds III. This also gives us the possibility to try out some ideas and features we have for the next full game and we can train some new people on the job.
Call of The Tenebrae seems to had a pretty long development and suffered from many reports, is the add-on more ambitious than it was planned ?
Yes. It was planned as a 3 month development, but it came out that it will bigger as planned and we needed to solve some technical issues. After 10 months we still do not have a save release date yet. On the other hand we have no obligation against a publisher to push it out.
It may be too soon to ask but, what will be the length of the add-on ?
This is - like always with an RPG - difficult to answer. Depending on the players way to play it, it should take between 6 and 20 hours to explore it. Maybe a bit more.
In March 2016, we learned that Two Worlds III was in pre-conception, is the project going well or is the priority on the adding for Two Worlds II ?
Pre-conception means work on story, features, sketches - this is going well, but needs time. As said, people working on a game concept are mostly not the same as the people working on DLCs. So the priority is eqal for both.
Can we expect new updates for Vendetta: Curse of the Raven's Cry, and if possible, do you think about releasing the game on consoles ?
yes. After we bought back all rights, we are now able to do something. After we finished Call Of The Tenebrae we will keep an eye on it.
Is Sacrilegium still in project ?
Actually, Sacrilegium is on ice. But it is a great concept and maybe one day... we will continue it.
Darkest Dungeon - Expansion Delayed
Posted: Jan 16, 2017, 09:12 pm by RPGWatch
@RockPaperShotgun Darkest Dungeon's expansion has been pushed back to April and a new free update adds new enemies.
New enemies are coming to Darkest Dungeon [official site] as part of the upcoming free update adding a shorter (but not easier) 'Radiant' mode. That's the word from developers Red Hook Studios, who say they're planning to launch the update by early February with other a number of "quality of life" tweaks too. The bad news is that all this extra work will push the dungeon crawler's expansion, the vampiric Crimson Court, back into April. I'll happily wait for that, especially if other fanciness is coming first. Like that ↑ new cheerleading Bone Bearer.
Four new enemies are coming to Champion (level 5) dungeons with the Radiant update, Red Hook say. They've only revealed the banner-waving Bone Bearer, who I'm told "are even said to tap into the hoarish energies that animate the long-decayed corpses" and will be skulking around Ruins dungeons. Some of that git Vvulf's mega-tough bandit pals will roam beyond that special encounter and into regular Champion-grade bandit lineups too.
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Conan Exiles - World and Lore Dev Blog
Posted: Jan 16, 2017, 09:12 pm by RPGWatch
Dev Blog 9 emphasizes the importance of the world and lore of Conan in Conan Exiles.
Howard wrote many tales of Conan, and many more have been told in comic books and movies since his death.
Conan Exiles builds on and draws inspiration from these great sources. The events in Conan Exiles take place on Conan's timeline between the stories Xuthal of the Dusk (The Slithering Shadow) and A Witch Shall be Born.
You play as a condemned exile, crucified in the burning desert. It is Conan himself who cuts you down from the cross and frees you. Conan continues on his journey, but you must now try and survive in the harsh Exiled Lands.
An enigmatic serpent bracelet has been placed around your wrist. It will kill you if you try to escape by crossing the huge Cursewall surrounding the Exiled Lands. The Cursewall is a powerful magical barrier which cuts you off from the outside world.
Who has placed the bracelet around your arm? Why have you been exiled to this place for your alleged crimes and not just executed on the spot by those who brought you here?
The Exiled Lands are full of mysteries and as you struggle to survive you can also strive to uncover them.
But you are definitely not alone in the Exiled Lands. Large groups of exiles have banded together and formed dangerous factions. The Yog worshipping Darfari cannibals will be among the first you meet. Along the eastern river you can find thieves and pirates who fight under the banner of The Black Hand. The bandits called The Dogs of the Desert lay claim to the lands further north with their bestial ways, and to the west you can find a sprawling city made by Stygian mercenaries and relic hunters who hunt for the treasures of old.
Many secrets lie buried beneath the sands and in deep caves. Explore where you dare, but beware of the dangerous creatures which lurk in the dark places of the world. Tunnels and temples built ages ago might have been abandoned by their former inhabitants, but their riches and mysteries are still well guarded by new terrors.
Bloom - Development Update
Posted: Jan 16, 2017, 03:02 pm by RPGWatch
In a new update for Bloom, information is provided about a new feature named "flavor events", art updates, programming and sound.
First off is our new feature I like to call the "flavor events". Effectively these are slower paced events meant to flesh out the world a bit and rely more on pure choice for the player on how to proceed. You've likely seen them before in a variety of games (especially older RPGs).
For example, if you get lost in "the tangle" (a maze-like section of the forest), instead of kicking you back to the central part of the maze to try again....we could present you with the situation "You've become lost in the tangle. As you wander trying to find a way out, you come across a fork in the path. Take the clear east path? Take the west path blocked by brambles? Or stop and try and gather yourself?". Then each one of these path choices have their own risks and rewards.
Originally I was going to make these just text....but it didn't last long before I decided we needed backgrounds. Here are some examples of where I'm going with that. It's nice to be able to do some backgrounds that aren't confined by the limitations of the top-down playable view.
Skyrim - Script Extender in March
Posted: Jan 16, 2017, 08:52 am by RPGWatch
@PCGamesN An updated version of Skyrim's script extender will be available in beta this March.
The most grave of these casualties was the loss of Skyrim Script Extender, which is vital to running many useful Skyrim mods as it increases the amount of commands that Skyrim can handle and manage.
One of these such mods was SkyUI. This mod not only vastly improves Skyrim's menu system, but it provides players with the ability to easily customise and toggle mods on and off. While mods do work without SkyUI, some features may not work in game and it is harder to change what mods you have active while playing.
Seeing as SKSE was vital for a large number of mods, the team are planning to release an update sometime in mid-March, allowing SKSE to work with Skyrim Special Edition. Based on a developer update back in late December that you can watch above, progress is coming along well but it won't be until March before a compatible version of SKSE will be available. Even then, the SKSE release in March will be for a beta version, with a completed Script Extender to be ready some time after that.
Tales of Berseria - Preview @ GameSpew
Posted: Jan 16, 2017, 02:52 am by RPGWatch
Gamespew thinks that Tales of Beseria will be one of the best entries in the Tales of... series:
Tales of Berseria Looks Set to be One of the Series' Best
I love a good revenge story. It may be one of the most base character motivations out there, but it's one that is believable and somewhat relatable. In Tales of Berseria, the newest entry into the Tales of series that's come to the west, revenge is what motivates the protagonist to head out on her quest. And judging by my time spent with the title up to now, it proves to be a gripping premise.
A human who's become part daemon after a catastrophic event, Velvet is a woman hell-bent on killing the Exorcist who sacrificed her younger brother to save the world. That very world has now become overrun with Exorcists during the three years that Velvet has been incarcerated, building up her powers by feasting on the blood of other daemons. After an unexpected visitor drops by, however, she is finally able to escape and take action. Already you should be able to tell that Tales of Berseria's yarn is quite the departure from the usual Tales of series' goody two shoes protagonists heading out to save the world, and it's greatly welcome. Sometimes it feels good to be bad. But then, it's all a matter of perspective anyway.
I've still got much to play of Tales of Berseria, but at this early stage I can safely say that it has left me very impressed indeed. I look forward to making more progress in the coming weeks, so watch out for a full review nearer to release.
Dev Blog #94: New Weapons & Tools
Work is progressing well on the late game crises - all new contracts and twists are in the game now, and next up is implementing events and some remaining mechanics. So while we're busy doing that, let's take a look at some of the new weapons and tools that the upcoming update will bring to the table. Read on!
The upcoming update will bring a total of at least 13 new weapons to the game. While some are unique to the Ancient Dead and come with unique skills, others are there to fill the remaining gaps in progression.
An agricultural tool adapted for use in battle, the Hooked Blade is a mid-tier variant of the Billhook. We're handing it out to bandit raiders as we speak, for two purposes: first, to smoothen the difficulty spike experienced when meeting them in the early game, and second, to smoothen the power spike when looting these in the early game. The Billhook is still sometimes wielded by your enemies, of course, but it's more rare now, and more often found on well-equipped noble troops or other mercenaries.
A long, quadrangular spike designed to pierce through weak points in armor, the Rondel Dagger is a high-tier variant of the existing dagger. It's there to make daggers more viable as niche weapons later on, and it's what named daggers are now based on in terms of stats. Note that the upcoming update will also bring a minor change to how the Puncture skill works!
An evolution of the classic pickaxe, the Military Pick has been adapted for use in combat to puncture the sturdiest of armors. It fills the gap between the low-tier Pickaxe and the high-tier Warhammer, and by being both more affordable and common than the latter, will give you the means to successfully engage heavily armored opponents, such as Orc Warriors, earlier in the game.
The heavy crossbow is the new high tier variant of the crossbow, and is effective even against heavily armored targets. It's roughly equivalent to the high-tier Warbow, and should make the use of crossbows more viable later on in the game if you favor armor-piercing qualities and ease of use over range and rate of fire. Named crossbows are now also based on the Heavy Crossbow in terms of stats.
The update won't just add new weapons, but also several new tools and accessories. Some of these can be unlocked as rewards for fulfilling ambitions, while others can simply be bought at the right place.
A trained falcon can be taken into battle similar to wardogs. It doesn't fight, but can at any time be let loose to lift the fog of war in an area around you for the remainder of the current round. Useful, for example, when you're ambushed in deep forest, or looking for that necromancer that keeps evading you.
The Sergeant's Sash can be earned by fulfilling a specific ambition, and it's to be worn by your second-in-command in the accessory slot. Not only does it make him visually stand out, it also grants a bonus to the Resolve stat, which in turn synergizes with the ability to rally the men and raise their morale.
ELEX - At PC Gamer Weekender
Posted: Jan 15, 2017, 02:32 pm by RPGWatch
Two THQ Nordic games (Elex, Spellforce 3l) will be playable by the public at PC Gamer Weekender in London:
THQ Nordic bringing titles to the PC Gamer Weekender Get your hands on ELEX.
The PC Gamer Weekender will be host to a wide range of publishers and the lovely, lovely games they all want to bring with them.
One such attendee will be THQ Nordic, which is bringing with it a couple of interesting titles for the public to get a good, solid hands-on with. First up is ELEX, a brand new IP from Piranha Bytes-creators of the Risen and Gothic RPG series. An "Eclectic, Lavish, Exhilarating, Xenial open-world action-RPG", ELEX mixes sci-fi and fantasy to great effect.
Set in an edgy, dark and uncompromising world where players are battling for a magical resource known as-you guessed it-ELEX. Along the way you'll explore futuristic and medieval settings, battle with swords, magic and guns and face off against-or just have a natter with-original characters and mutated creatures.
Piranha Bytes Game Director Bjorn Pankratz said ELEX will be a "completely new game experience with a fresh setting, new assets and plenty of possibilities."
THQ Nordic's second title at the PC Gamer Weekender will be a more familiar, though no less exciting, name: Spellforce 3.
The third game in the near-15-year-old RPG/RTS series is being developed by Grimlore Games, and acts as a prequel to the original Spellforce: The Order of Dawn and maintains the series' setting of Eo.
Both games and many more will be available to play at the PC Gamer Weekender, which is being held February 18-19 at the Olympia, London, in the UK. For more details see the site, and follow us on Twitter for up-to-the-minute news.
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