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Default Elemental: War of Magic - Dev Journal: Making Interesting Worlds

January 26th, 2011, 21:18
In this jounal entry Brad Wardell talks about the challenges of making an interesting world and a little about Fallen Enchantress:

During the betas of War of Magic, we had rivers in the world. Unfortunately, they looked horrendous because they couldnít easily change the way they looked based on the morphing terrain system.

For those of you not familiar with Elemental, in War of Magic, the terrain is totally morphable. It doesnít just change shape but changes texture and such. We couldnít get the rivers to look satisfying with this system and took them out. Unfortunately, this only made the world look even more uninteresting to players.

One thing we could/should have done was have paths and roads right from the start.

In Fallen Enchantress, a major effort is being put in to have truly randomized landmasses. In War of Magic, the worlds are randomly generated but the land masses are not. Part of this was an issue of how long it takes to generate land (anyone whoís ever coded fractal code knows what I mean). Itís certainly not undoable. Civilization does it and there are some freeware tools that can do it as well. It just takes time and optimization (i.e. budget) which has been allocated for Fallen Enchantress so that we can get our roads, rivers, and randomly generated land masses. For us, the challenge isnít to create randomly generated maps (the editor does it already) but to make them fun and interesting and pretty (hence no rivers in War of Magic).
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January 26th, 2011, 21:18
It sounds like they are getting off in the weeds again, and losing focus on fun gameplay.
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