Project Eternity - Interview @ GameBanshee
Josh Sawyer is interviewed by GameBanshee on Project Eternity and they even managed to pop in a question on Icewind Dale 3.
Buck: Will there be some sort of damage type system in play (bludgeoning, piercing, slashing), and what steps are you taking to ensure that all weapon types (two-handed, sword/shield, dual-wielding, and ranged) are balanced and, ultimately, viable pursuits?
Josh: I'm not sure if there will be or not. I don't want to introduce so many moving parts to the damage, weapons, and armor systems that we become unable to present player choices that are meaningful and coherent. That is, depending on how many factors the player is expected to analyze when selecting a weapon for any given task, we need to make sure that the range of choices the player can make feel like they have clear, solid benefits and drawbacks instead of coming across as a bunch of "mush".
The first step in ensuring that weapon types/combat styles are viable pursuits is saying, "All weapon types and combat styles must be viable pursuits." If that's your high-level goal, design decisions should always be framed in that context. If someone says, "Daggers are the bad weapons for characters who suck!" that clearly flies in the face of the stated goal.
I think some editions of AD&D have really struggled with this. The rules seem to want to structure weapons in a certain way that promotes trade-offs, but mechanics are in conflict and produce a bunch of choices that feel dead in the water outside of niche circumstances. If you ever look at a choice and say, "Obviously everyone should take this," or "I would never take this," there's probably something wrong with how they've been balanced.
And the IWD3 question answered by Feargus:
Buck: I know that Obsidian Entertainment owns the Icewind Dale franchise assets and that you've approached publishers in the past about the prospect of pursuing Icewind Dale III. Given the success of your Project Eternity Kickstarter, what are the odds that we may yet see an ID3 in the near future, crowd-funded or not? Hypothetically, what direction would you take a third entry in the series?
Feargus: You are correct, we approached Atari a number of times about doing Icewind Dale 3. We hope that with the success of Project Eternity that it might be possible to talk to Hasbro / Wizards of the Coast about those games again. However, our focus right now is Project Eternity. We would not want to start working on something like IWD3 soon, since we don’t want anything to compromise Project Eternity at all. If we were to do IWD3, I think we would continue the focus of what the IWD series was all about – a great dungeon crawling counterpoint to Baldur’s Gate and Torment.
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