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RPGWatch Forums » Games » Indie RPG » Iceblink Engine (Gold Box style games!)

Default Iceblink Engine (Gold Box style games!)

September 2nd, 2013, 18:40
You may remember this Kickstarter from last year – it was for creating a game engine aimed at recreating gold-box style games with lots of modern updates (such as a decent conversation system!).

The good news is that the engine is now nearly at Beta! The very good news is that Bree Arts have somewhat over-delivered on their campaign promises, and the engine will now include an easy-use tileset editor and fully customisable classes / races / traits / skills etc.

Some of the forum regulars are posting Lets Plays of demo modules on Youtube, which give an indication of the state of play with the current Alpha build of the engine:

Hearkenwold module (demo): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IzaixCwPa4,

Lanterna module (demo): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vpfe-LW_G8,

Red Carnival module (demo): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlrpJSJuVUI,

Someone else on the forums put together a useful list of engine stuff that I’ll just cut and paste:

- superfast and easy building in a grid based 2D world with free form maps as detailed or as rudimentary as you like, using premade tiles or full scale unique painted backgrounds

- a sophisticated system of triggers that can simulate very complex chains of events and with varied and interesting adventuring & story telling

- deep and tactical, turn- and grid based battles with sounds, animations and very customizable rules (including already backstabs, cleaves, area damage, hiding in shadows, attacks of opportunity, giant sized creatures filling multiple squares at once…)

- an insane amount of flexibility (create your own classes, races, traits, spells, items, creatures, graphics… you name it, most of it already possible via - mostly intoolset - editors),

- support for not only for fantasy, but also scifi, western, post-apocalyptic, spies&agents, steampunk…

- a full blown conversation system allowing for unlimited roleplaying options in dialogue as well as narrative sequences

- a directx9 based graphic engine, allowing various animations of NPC/player sprites and other ambience objects and effects

- floating text above NPC heads in- and outside combat, providing statistical info as well as one liners or activity descriptions

- a journal (allowing the player to additionally write her/his own notes into it)

- the option to change the party sprite, e.g. to a boat or a horse

- a shop system

- the ability to designate one of the party members as leader, e.g. for doing conversations or to have some his abilities used on world map

- support for bringing in own music and sound effects

- a customizable UI colour scheme and design (e.g. fonts used, set up of character screen, icon graphics, buttons,…) for each module

- a flexible party size allowing for pre-created companions or fully player made parties of 6(+) characters

- an unlimited world size (by using a complex network of totally flexibly connected smaller maps with blindingly fast load times)

- a Line of Sight system

- absolutely powerful scripting options in C# through various script hooks placed at neuralgic points of the code, allowing module authors to insert self written code

- support for year long campaigns with savegames that can still be used after the campaign author adds in new regions, creatures, items, classes, traits, spells…

And this is just the work in progress state, e.g. world time, weather including full screen effects, day & night cycles with changing view ranges and atmospheric tinting, moving NPC with schedules, Fog of War, more battle AI variety… are just a glimpse of the features that are likely to make their way into IB in the next few months, too.

Anyway, have a look, and see what you think!
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September 5th, 2013, 16:22
Originally Posted by Pongo View Post
for creating a game engine aimed at recreating gold-box style games with lots of modern updates
I'd like to clarify that the IB engine isn't solely directed at recreating Gold Box styled CRPGs, but can be customized to handle a wide variety of different CRPG styles. Also, in fact, it doesn't have GB styled exploration with a first person view; only the combat (and to some extent, long distance travel) could be said to resemble GB games in style, IMHO.

Other than that, I approve of this thread!

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September 5th, 2013, 17:45
Sounds great!

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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September 6th, 2013, 13:26
Yeah, very fair point Grue!

I'm just putting together a module now that is a campaign for a single character, with recruitable NPCs with personalities / individual dialogue options based on circumstances etc. The combat is quite gold-boxey, but the rest of the module is very different to that.

In future, Iceblink combat will also have a lot more options than the gold box games had - for example, you will be able to set up specific tiles to trigger environmental traps / narratives and weird creature special attacks. And that's not to mention the fact that you have a free reign in developing your own race / class system, so traits such as cleave, whirlwind attack or whatever else you come up with could be factored in… on both sides! Could really make for some strategically difficult encounters.

All of the modules with youtube links above give a flavour of the kind of things people are working on currently, but there's a lot of possible variety for different approaches. I'm really looking forward to see what people do with it!
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December 13th, 2013, 16:56
Quick update - the release for the Engine is 20th December, so only a week to go!

Here's a short video showing off some of the key features:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=waRyDix1QGo
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December 21st, 2013, 21:21
IceBlink Engine and Toolset are now available to all!

Stop on by the neverwintervault and download the engine to start playing some of the already available adventure mini-modules.

http://neverwintervault.org/catalog/ib

I'll be uploading the Tilemapper and NWN2toIBConversationConverter programs later tonight.

Module Making Contest will be starting soon with a few months to work on your project before ending the contest.

For more info: www.iceblinkengine.com
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January 3rd, 2014, 21:21
I'm having a lot of fun with Dorateen's "Castle Hearkenwold" at the minute. Its a classic party-based adventure heavily inspired by the SSI Gold Box games, and in fact uses art assets (sprites and some tiles) from the Forgotten Realms Unlimited Adventures archives.

Its not finished yet, but you can still have hours of fun with it (and I think he promised an update later this month…. ). Its refreshingly challenging, and Dorateen has made great use of conversation options based on class and race etc.

Its well worth checking out.

A couple of screenshots:






You can download the Castle Hearkenwold demo here:
http://neverwintervault.org/project/…arkenwold-beta

You'll need a copy of the engine to play it - you can download that here:
http://neverwintervault.org/project/…ne-and-toolset
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January 7th, 2014, 20:00
I just wanted to post a great new map image that was posted on the Iceblink forum by Skitnik. I really love the art style Skitnik is using, I'd love to see a full module like this!

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