Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Some Screenshots for the Curious

Here's a few screenshots from the current build of Legacy of the Last Refuge:

Party Creation:

Map Exploration:


Friday, March 16, 2012

Strategy-based RPG or RPG-based Strategy?

I'm dreaming of a game that captures the best elements of the fantasy CRPGs I cherished in my youth and then frames those elements in a persistent strategic context. I grant that there may be as many definitions of "best elements" as there are gamers, but here are those which I recall most fondly...

1) Turn-based combat
2) Persistent consequences (Wasteland, Sword of Fargoal and later roguelikes)
3) Customizable party (Phantasie, Final Fantasy, Dragon Warrior/Quest 3)

Since I'm dreaming, this game needs a few more features:

4) Customizable gear
5) Procedurally generated environs
6) Persistent adversaries

OK... so there's the RPG... in my dream game all of the above would be enmeshed within a broader context:

1) Escalating, yet player-influenced, difficulty
2) Ongoing progression of player resources
3) Impending game conclusion

And that's the Strategy.

In an effort to make this dream a reality, I've been working on Legacy of the Last Refuge. It's a tile-based, party-of-4 CRPG with randomly generated levels - Here's what I have so far...

The player's party may consist of any combination of the 8 starting classes. Each class has varying base attributes and a set rate of increase for each of those attributes (these attributes' values will determine the expense of training the character in particular skills). Classes impose no other restrictions on equipment use or skill acquisition.

The player is based in the Last Refuge of his people. There are 4 gates from the Refuge to the Barrier - a foe-infested dimension represented by procedurally generated dungeon levels. The player's party may enter the Barrier through each gate only once. When the party is wiped out within the Barrier or has entered the Barrier through each of the 4 gates (and subsequently retires), the player will create a new party from the classes previously available and any new classes that have become available.

The nature of the Barrier is such that any life force (Vis) lost within it is stored in a (nexus-like) pocket dimension. This pocket dimension is called the Last Refuge by those it harbors -- the remnants of the player's people.

The Vis-absorbing properties of the Refuge have attracted the attention of a being of immense power. It is coming. If it is not repelled, it will consume all Vis within the Refuge - that of the lost and the living. The objective of this game is to prepare for (and hopefully claim victory in) the final conflict between the player's party and this being.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Log of the Final Aayrn Attack as accounted by the Captain of Guardians

It has been two weeks since we laid to rest the last of the Brevin. In the days proceeding that and preceding this, nothing on the far side of the gates has stirred. Today was different. I have never seen the Aayrn, or any living thing, gather in such numbers... they sensed a change in the boundary between Refuge and the Other side, that which our former Guardians called the Barrier of the Pact. They came in droves, spilling out into a horde surrounding each gate. They threw themselves at the barrier that had so long held them at bay as though it were a wall unseen... and they burned. They shattered. It was not decimation, but devastation. All of those that came against the Gates of our Refuge this day have perished. The passing of the Last Brevin has changed the nature of the Barrier a great deal, it seems.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Brave Band of Adventurers Sets Forth...

... and is promptly eaten by a dragon.

Or not. I haven't decided. But here's what they looked like before they got started:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Some First Efforts...

I volunteered my wife to help Elmokki with an undead lion sprite. He said a longdead appearance would be fine, so here's my wife's first effort there...

I really don't want to post any screenies of Legacy of the Last Refuge at this stage, but progress is slower than I'd hoped, so here's our first effort at level generation...

This is actually a full screen shot, but as I've never posted an image here, I don't know how it will show up. It may be hard to make out, but it's a tile-based forest (first effort) with a grass background (another first effort).

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Gilgamore's Journal - Final Entry

I have it! A solution! There IS a way to use the Barrier's properties for our own ends. The people have grown soft as the sand trickling through the finest hourglass... they create works of beauty and thrive in peace, but they will need the martial skills and arcane knowledge I and mine posses. The Pact ends on the morrow even if I must shuffle through the gates myself. It will be a wonderful morning.

I can barely contain myself for sleep... after all this time, these words will not need to be read! My people will be free and we will regain our world!

A Torn Letter...


Thank you so much for the consistency of your missives. It warms my heart to know the family is well in my absence.

My studies go well. The academy is every bit as grand as it is rumored to be. It seems like a grander structure could not be crafted in all the Realm. (Oh, I know nothing can quite compare to the Sanctuary, but the Guardians have long been acknowledged as the most noble of people - can you imagine giving up all contact, save that of your family, for eons? They can't even send letters like these, as the magic of the Pact is said to obscure their every written word - I just heard that from a professor today.) I have already made a few friends in class and...

Gilgamore's Journal - Nine Hundredth and Seventy-Third Entry

Decades have passed since last I made two entries in these pages over the course of a single year... now I find myself adding a new observation on an almost daily basis. Every effort I have made to refute these newfounded fears has met with failure.

We never understood the nature of the Barrier. We described it in theory and found no evidence to dispute those theories. We fell so far short of understanding. The threat will never fade. Our Refuge, wonderful that it is, will forever be under siege - I boasted in my youth that such a fate was preferable, when I imagined that my own years would be more than a tear drop in the sea.

The Pact has never been more important to our peoples. Alas, that which saves can, in intemperate measure, kill.