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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Might & Magic X - Let’s do the “Tile warp” again!

Default Might & Magic X - Let’s do the “Tile warp” again!

June 27th, 2013, 05:18
Might & Magic X has another update on it's development blog about the games engine this time.

As we were showing our concepts around, we realized two things: first, players today are not used to control a party and have freedom of movement in first person anymore. Their first reaction is “who’s my character?” or “why can’t I see my sword and swing it around?” In other words, it seems that for most players nowadays (even players who grew up playing Mandate of Heaven) a first-person game with freedom of movement means FPS-like gameplay or a Skyrim-like single character action-RPG.

However, when facing a grid-based, turn-based game like World of Xeen, those same players immediately say “oh I see, it’s old-school, it’s turn-based, I control a party, I’m moving on a grid.” Even young’uns players not used to this kind of RPGs could see that it was “kinda like a board game.” People were getting it immediately.

That’s something we couldn’t ignore. Our conclusion was that getting back to free movement could make sense for future installments, but didn’t seem to be the best move for the first Might & Magic RPG in ten years. We had to go back to the roots first: tile-based, turn-based, old-school all the way!

Going for a tile-based gameplay also means it’s easier to provide tools and editors for players to create their own adventures, which is one of the things we really wanted for this project. But we’ll talk more about this particular aspect in a future blog post…

And of course, there's no denying it also makes the development of the game easier for us as well, since we don't have to spend too much time on topics like pathfinding, hit detection, or collision detection, allowing us to focus on other aspects of the gameplay.
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Last edited by Couchpotato; June 27th, 2013 at 05:36.
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June 27th, 2013, 05:18
Having read the entire article, I must admit that I haven't been subjected to such a concentration of bullshit in a while. The guy spends 90% of the article making up fanciful excuses to have awkward movement and then (finally) lets loose with the actual reason:

And of course, there's no denying it also makes the development of the game easier for us as well, since we don't have to spend too much time on topics like pathfinding, hit detection, or collision detection, allowing us to focus on other aspects of the gameplay.
Personally, I understand having to compromise and cut costs for a test run on a reboot, but don't try to blow smoke up my ass.
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June 27th, 2013, 08:13
I don't agree at all.

He's being very frank and clear about why - and he also mentions that it will be easier to provide tools and an editor for the players.

Since I'm also developing a tile-based game, I know exactly what he means.

I don't see any smoke-blowing - and if they really wanted to blow smoke, they wouldn't admit that it was also much easier.

You're just being too jaded here.
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June 27th, 2013, 10:48
I would have preferred free movement, but I can live with this. I do agree with Drithius though, they could have just said "It will be easier" and be done with it.
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June 27th, 2013, 11:09
Yeah, if that was the only reason it might have been enough. But it obviously wasn't.
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June 27th, 2013, 11:17
Regardless of the reason(s), I have to agree with tomasp3n. I appreciate that the devs are trying to give it an old-school feel, but I definitely would have preferred free movement. It makes the world a lot more immersive to me.
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June 27th, 2013, 11:19
It is very hard to make a combat system like in M&M if you have free form movement.
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June 27th, 2013, 11:23
I was always a big fan of the old tile-based style - so I don't have a problem with it. I think it has a distinctive old-school charm, and I can say from personal experience that if you can do decent 2D art - it's much easier to make a reasonably good looking game in that way, than a free movement 3D game.

Given the high level production values of modern 3D games - it's pretty hard to create a game in that way and not have it look very "quaint" if you don't have the manpower or money available.

So, in many ways - I think it sounds like the right choice.

However, if this was a big budget title with very experienced people behind it - I'd have preferred a 3D engine as well.
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June 27th, 2013, 11:23
Originally Posted by GothicGothicness View Post
It is very hard to make a combat system like in M&M if you have free form movement.
Not really. M&M6 is an obvious example
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June 27th, 2013, 11:24
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
I don't agree at all.

He's being very frank and clear about why - and he also mentions that it will be easier to provide tools and an editor for the players.

Since I'm also developing a tile-based game, I know exactly what he means.

I don't see any smoke-blowing - and if they really wanted to blow smoke, they wouldn't admit that it was also much easier.

You're just being too jaded here.
^ This ^

Im actually also building a turn/tile based 3D game and it all makes perfect sense? Besides, Why resurrect an old IP that hugely appeals to an old fanbase who is used to the turn based movement only to change it all up? Better to start a new IP for that. And Grimrock proved that grid based is still a great option. It also drops system requirements so animation and graphic Fidelity can be brought up a notch. It all balances out. I think it's awesome
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June 27th, 2013, 11:27
There are lots of games to choose from if I want free form movement. So I'm quite happy with one game choosing a different mode. Particularly MM, since my favourite in the series was MM4 and 5.

I seem to agree completely with the musceteer.

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June 27th, 2013, 12:22
I played World of Xeen prolly 20 or 30 times, so more power to tile movement!
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June 27th, 2013, 13:11
As others have said, M&M came from a tile heritage, and I think it is fair to say that it never truely figured out free-movement / realtime. Don't get me wrong, I adored MM6 and MM7 as games, and have finished every M&M game except the first, several times over. The series defined my childhood, so I don't say that lightly.

MM6 and 7 (and 8 to a lesser extent, and even 9 somewhat) had fantastic worlds to explore, levelling, secrets, puzzles, story(ish), quests, skills, trainers, items and so on. The combat, however, wasn't a patch on earlier games. I'd argue that MM2 had the "best" - nothing has ever come close to +666 devil kings or whatever!

The movement to free-roam/realtime resulted in almost arcade-like spamming of the "shoot" key, mowing down waves of palette-swapped goblins, with the odd meteor strike thrown in for mass extinction. Fun, certainly, but hard to escape a sense of sillyness which magazines tended to pick up on in poor reviews.

In terms of balancing, then, MM3-5 kept the tile movement which ensured an element of turn-based timing, with visible monsters. That latter element still made things a bit wierd (it encouraged backing off, shooting at range, and two-stepping around), but I think overall, they made the right choice in going tile-based for X. And let's not forget how wrong non-tile, first person RPG-ing can get… MM9 I'm looking at you.
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June 27th, 2013, 13:13
I like both tile-based and freeform movement now but at the time M&M 6 came out I hated freeform movement and is one of the reasons why I have never finished the later Might & Magic games. (I'm playing 6 right now though) I am glad they are going with the style of M&M 3-5 rather then the later ones with movement and combat since it just doesn't work as well in the later games.
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June 27th, 2013, 13:16
I actually enjoyed the fast-paced combat of MM6 - and found it gave the game a refreshing levity - allowing you to focus on other things.

But ok, I do seem to recall that the game had MASSIVE amounts of filler combat - and I don't actually remember how the older MM games used to be in that way.

Playing MM6 with a slower semi-turnbased combat system is something I wouldn't have been able to stomach. Much like I couldn't enjoy Wizardry 8.

Endless combat never fascinated me that much.

I've completed MM4 and MM5 - but I don't think I ever played MM3 to completion.
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June 27th, 2013, 13:29
I have no problem at all with tile based. Bring it on!
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June 27th, 2013, 13:43
Originally Posted by Irien View Post
The movement to free-roam/realtime resulted in almost arcade-like spamming of the "shoot" key, mowing down waves of palette-swapped goblins, with the odd meteor strike thrown in for mass extinction. Fun, certainly, but hard to escape a sense of sillyness which magazines tended to pick up on in poor reviews.
Perhaps I'm missing something, but I don't see how the style of combat had anything to do with those games using a real-time movement system. They could have simply used a lesser amount of enemies and made them stronger instead.
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June 27th, 2013, 14:12
no free movement was a disappointment initially, but I got over it. There are so many things to consider with the continuation of a venerable series by an inexperienced (in this area) developer that this is only one point of many.

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June 27th, 2013, 16:38
I'm kind of surprised at the amount of criticism this game has been getting on RPGWatch - usually you guys are all about the old-school PC RPGs.

Personally, this is one of the games I'm looking forward to most. I never really got into the free movement M&M entries - I tried M&M7, thought it was okay, but never really finished it. They just didn't feel the same as the old games. This one is looking more like the Might & Magic games I grew up with.
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June 27th, 2013, 19:51
I do not understand what the problem is with the free movement M&M6+ games.
I always played them using the turn-based mode.
Anyway I like the grid-based M&M1-5 games as well.
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