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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » RPGWatch Feature: Depths of Peril Interview

Default RPGWatch Feature: Depths of Peril Interview

February 22nd, 2007, 00:46
Soldak Entertainment's indie action/RPG Depths of Peril still has a relatively low profile but the addition of a dynamic strategy layer to the usual formula sounds like it might make for some entertaining gameplay. We had the chance to throw some questions at founder and lead, Steven Peeler:
Broadly speaking, Depths of Peril is an action RPG with strong strategy elements. It has all of the things you would expect from an action RPG like fast action, tons of monsters, exploring a world, developing a character, and gathering lots of loot. The thing that makes it stand out is the strategy backend. You lead a faction (called a covenant in the game) that is fighting for dominance over all of the other factions in the city. Defeating the other covenants takes diplomacy, trade, and eventually wars and raids.
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February 22nd, 2007, 00:46
Yes, I know…another action/RPG. Still, I think this one has some nifty ideas. Sort of makes me think a little of HoMM despite all the obvious differences.

If the AI works well and the dynamic stuff all falls into place, it should be fun.

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February 22nd, 2007, 06:23
Sounds interesting. I really like the idea of incorporating more strategy game elements into RPGs (not to be confused with adding RPG elements to strategy games). As turn-based RPGs are fading into oblivion, the addition of strategy features (such as trading, diplomacy, construction of fortifications, and large battles with the ability to issue sophisticated commands) could go a long way toward reducing the prevailing emphasis on quick reflexes, while putting more stress on the strategic planning aspects that make TB combat attractive to so many RPGers.
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February 22nd, 2007, 08:33
Doesn't leave me too exited. The lack of a story element seems to drive it further towards the action side than most titles. Plus the screens give me serious color overload.
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February 22nd, 2007, 11:39
I'll Pass!!

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February 22nd, 2007, 13:17
Hmmm … I actually thought it sounded very promising - sure it is action-heavy, but with enough group and strategic action to give it a different feel than most stuff.

So hopeful Q1 but nothing solid for timing … and it is hard to get a feel for the game length. I think the 'living factional world' sounds very interesting. Hope it works!

— Mike
Last edited by txa1265; February 22nd, 2007 at 13:32. Reason: Couple more thoughts …
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February 22nd, 2007, 15:26
Originally Posted by Dhruin
AAA action developer Ritual Entertainment
Apparently that grading system has only one tier.

Statues wouldn't be better if they could move. Model airplanes would not be better if they were the same size as airplanes.
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February 22nd, 2007, 19:30
it seems that 100 new RPGs have been posted about on this site since i started reading it, but none have come out.
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February 22nd, 2007, 23:49
It's only been just over a month, give them time!!

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February 23rd, 2007, 07:57
heh. I AM IMPATIENT FOR RPG NEWNESS!
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February 23rd, 2007, 14:24
sounds interesting, new, but don't know if I would like it, guess I'll have to wait and try a demo first. anyone knows a game similar to what these guys are saying?

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February 24th, 2007, 08:41
I haven't played anything similar to this myself. The problem I have with Depths of Peril is that (if I understood correctly) the other factions in the game will be competing with the player in real time. This is getting a little too close to the RTS side of the pendulum. Having to worry about your opponents getting stronger every time you just want to explore the world and do a little sightseeing is the back breaker for me. I'm a big fan of dynamic worlds, and this game certainly has some interesting concepts, but the use of AI controlled factions operating in real time is, imo, not the best approach. For one thing, it constantly puts the player under time pressure, and, secondly, it makes the use of narrative that reflects the events happening in the world nearly impossible.

At present, the best solution I can see for implementing dynamic worlds in single player RPGs is for the big dynamic events to be scripted and triggered by the actions of the player. It's not ideal, but the alternative has too many drawbacks.
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February 24th, 2007, 10:05
I certainly wouldn't want every game to take this approach but it makes a nice change of pace - something different. It is an action/RPG and they usually rely on certain gameplay mechanics (addictive combat, loot, skill trees) rather than a strong story and questing (yes, there are exceptions). I mean, take Sacred - surely noone thought the quests were the strength of that very successful game? Titan Quest has been very successful but noone has praised the story. Fate generated a lot of buzz and that was nothing but combat.

So, take good, addictive action/RPG gameplay (hopefully, anyway - go with the example ) and add dynamic competition and quest generation…sounds more engaging than just whack-a-mole like a lot of them.

Action/RPGs aren't my favourite mode but this sounds more engaging to me, anyway. Heroes of Might & Magic and Space Rangers both come to mind as games I liked with active competing NPCs.

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February 25th, 2007, 09:31
I agree. The dynamic real time-strategy elements could make the game a lot more interesting than the standard action rpg formula. I've just always preferred turn-based strategy games and have never really liked RTSs. If the strategy components in DoP (trading, diplomacy etc.) could be executed in a TB mode with the battles taking place in real-time (somewhat like the approach taken in the Total War series), I would probably find the game a lot more appealing.
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February 28th, 2007, 22:10
yep .. good mix .. liked that one with first spellforce
the graphics look weeeeeeeeird though
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February 28th, 2007, 22:44
I have to agree on the graphics—I don't usually wear sunglasses while gaming, myself.

AFA the actual game elements, it does sound interesting. I agree with Geist that the more strategy elements you slip into an action game, the closer it comes to emulating the attractions of turn based play, which I miss a lot but don't see being revived any time soon. Having the AI be competetive without being overwhelming is always a difficult aspect. Have to see how it turns out.

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