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Expeditions: Viking

2017-01-18

Expedition Vikings Beta Preview

Forgottenlor returns from scouting out Expeditions: Viking and delivers an early report of what we can expect when it reaches our shores.
» Continue reading the article...

Ghost of a Tale

2017-01-04

Ghost of a Tale Preview

Ghost of a Tale is everything we love in an RPG, packaged in a fun, familiar way. Aubrielle explores the lessons it can teach every project.
» Read the article

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RPGWatch - Game of the Year Awards 2016

by Myrthos

We went through our database and came up with the games that were released according to that database and are or could be considered to be an RPG and have added them to the list of games that you can choose from in our Game of the Year 2016 awards.

You can give 3 votes for the best RPGs in 2016 and 3 votes for the most anticipated RPGs in 2017.

In addition you can also specify if you want to participate in our key giveaway (last question), which means you have a chance to win one of the keys we have for a game. You cannot give a preference for a game, if you are selected as a winner for a key, you get one randomly. If you already have that game or don't want it then you can give it to someone else yourself. The list of available games will be given in the first comment to this news posting.

You will need to be registered and have a minimum of 10 posts in order to be able to participate in the vote and key giveaway.

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Details

Friday - January 20, 2017

Battle Brothers - Contract Changes

by Hiddenx, 18:45

Learn more about contract changes in the Battle Brothers dev-blog #95:

Dev Blog #95: Contract Changes

Time to take a look at some changes on how contracts work this week. Negotiations have changed, and we’re introducing a new minor feature to make contracts and your actions within the world of Battle Brothers have more of an impact: situations. Let’s find out what that’s about!
Situations

With your actions in the world should come consequences. As we’ve mentioned in a previous dev blog, contracts are now based more on what is actually happening around settlements and less on artificially spawning things for you to fight. Lots of greenskin activity in the neighborhood? Then there’s a good chance people want to hire you to take care of them. There’s direwolves roaming nearby? People are likely to want to hire you to hunt them down.

We want to take this a step further. You know how the village burgomeister is telling you of how people are disappearing and that’s why he wants you to hunt down those beasts? It’s no longer just flavor as we’re introducing situations for settlements.

A settlement can find itself in any number of different situations. If there’s something roaming about, such as direwolves, villagers can be disappearing, which influences both the number of recruits available and the prices you get. As you take on the contract and rid the village of this terror, you’ll resolve the situation and the village can prosper again. Depending on your actions and success in fulfilling contracts, settlements can also find themselves in new situations. For example, your action of escorting an important caravan can result in a castle being freshly supplied, which grants you and everyone else a better selection of goods to shop for. On the other hand, if things don’t go as planned, a settlement can find its granaries raided or burned down, which makes food more rare and more expensive.

While just a small feature by itself, introducing these situations contributes to your actions having more of an impact in the world of Battle Brothers, and it makes the economy feel less static as settlements have actual problems to deal with and benefits to gain from hiring you. In addition, having this system in place will allow us to potentially extend it in the future with situations not linked to contracts, such as the outbreak of a disease, for a more dynamic world.
Negotiations

Here’s the thing: Negotiating contracts should be a part of gameplay, but the way it works now, you just ask for more money until the employer denies, and that’s it. It’s automatic, there’s little thought behind it, it’s not an interesting mechanic. So yeah, something needs to change. There’s two ways we could have gone about it: Either turn this into a more complex minigame of negotiating for better pay, or change it into something different. While the idea of creating a complex and fun minigame may be intriguing, it’s also not feasible within a limited timeframe and an already packed roadmap, so we went with the second option.

Contract negotiations are now no longer about how much crowns you are to get, at least not directly, but about when and for what. There’s now a set amount of crowns per contract, depending on the type of contract, its difficulty, your renown and a small random factor. What you’re actually negotiating are payment modalities. What percentage is to be paid in advance? How much per head you return with and how much flat payment? Employers have their own thoughts on the matter, and you can ask them to pay out slices of the contract money in different ways. It’s no longer about getting a few crowns more or less in advance, it’s about whether you get half in advance or not. Sure you may not negotiate as often as before anymore, but if you do, it’ll be a much more deliberate action now.

Battle Brothers

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Enderal - Patch 1.1.7.0 is out

by Hiddenx, 18:41

You can find the patch notes for Enderal 1.1.7.0 here:

Changelog

Quest:

  • "Gnarldalf has to die!" (NQ06): Giving the horse or mule an empty name is no longer possible. Thanks to Zorg!
  • "Trails of the Past" (NQ19): Now, the posting in front of the Dancing Nomad tavern actually starts the quest, providing an alternative path to starting the quest via talking to Tiwon or finding an artefact (Script wasn't compiled).
  • "Part Of Something Momentous, Part II" (MQ05): A few failsaves moving Aixon and the player to the intended places if they don’t arrive.
  • "The Word of the Dead" (MQ07a): The conversation with Lexil Merrayîl cannot be interrupted by bumping into him.
  • "Deus Ex Machina" (MQ07b): The first encounter with Lishari should now be less prone to bugs.
  • (MQ07bAftermath): Player alias now gets cleared after the quest. Also, the script on the alias should now work.
  • "The Lion's Den" (MQ09): The player should definitely be unable to jump over the barricads of the nehrimese camp.
  • "The Lion's Den" (MQ09): After the "Cycle" theme has finished playing during the player’s second encounter with the High Ones, there will be silence until the scene with Tealor and Taranor.
  • "The Lion's Den" (MQ09): Removed stucking cricket sounds, maybe fixed a bug in which the music was removed during the follow-up quests.
  • "Angel" (MQ11a) Calia now has a fallback AI package.
  • "A Song in the Silence" (MQ11c): The Scene with the Dog is hardened against pathfinding failure.
  • "A Song in the Silence" (MQ11c): The player should no longer get the key to the cave twice. The script now checks if the player already has the key.
  • "Every Day Like The Last, Part II" (CQJ02): Silence box now works (script was not compiled).
  • "Every Day Like The Last, Part II" (CQJ02): Jespar shouldn’t stop during the scene at the top of the watch tower due to pathfinding failure. If the scene still stops use "resetai" on Jespar in the console.


Tech:

  • MGEF _00E_MQ12c_KillerArrowME: Removed the empty script.
  • Quest "Abilities": removed useless script QF_Abilites_0100A680.psc. Various other edits in the same vein.
  • Quest "Levelsystem": removed various useless string properties.
  • Fixed the broken lockpicking script again. Now, a skill of lockpicking over 25 will not allow you to open every chest/door.
  • The level-up message now also includes your current level, as well as your current attribute values. Thanks to ravenscans!
  • Now it is no longer possible to push the levers for the hidden safe in Riverville several times to solve the riddle. Fixed the script _00E_SecretPressurePlates.
  • Fixes for out-of-bounds getAt errors in various scripts.
  • Bountyquests: Fixed CTD when a dead bounty target was soul-swallowed.
  • Fixed the bug causing Yogosh & The Experimentator to trigger a purple explosion on death and not leaving an Ash Pile to loot. Also, Yogosh now uses Entropy spells and is twice her original size.
  • Grave guard shields are now visible on all races.
  • The "Fine Dress" which could be looted on Andrasta now also displays correctly on men. It can also be purchased by Elumund Noblegarn and provides a bonus to rhetorics.
  • Purchased sets of furniture can now properly be returned in Arks noble house.
  • Shopkeeper Mirella should now sell her potions, even after completing the quest.
  • Ark, Stranger Area has been further optimised.
  • "Dimensional Rift" can no longer be cast on summoned creatures.
  • Removed wrong entry from the "Blade Breaker" affinity.
  • The Affinity "Dark Keeper" now increases the entropy damage correctly.


World:

  • Fixed various leaks in the Stranger Area, in the Barracks Quarter, at the Bank, at the Suncoast, at the Strange Place, in the Heartlands, in Old Ishmartep, in Thalgard, in Old Dothulgrad, in Mayor’s House, in the Starship, at the Butcher's House, in the Tailor's House, in the Living Temple, in the Powder Desert, at the Western Cliff, in one SHOAEPINC Building, in Lightgrove, in the Dark Valley, in the Forbidden Tunnels and in the City of a Thousand Floods.
  • Fixed various floats in the Suntemple, in the South Quarter, at the Suncoast and in the Dark Valley.
  • Fixed lightning in the butcher's house and in the tailor's house.
  • Fixed positioning of a chest in the heartlands.
  • Fixed Z-Fighting in the player house in the Noble's Quarter, in the Curarium, in the Chronicum, in the stables of Castle Dal'Galar, on the Half-Moon Island, in the Heartlands and in the Starship.
  • Fixed collision in the Barracks Quarter, at the Suncoast and in one SHOAEPINC building.
  • Fixed terrain traps in the Stranger Area, in the Forbidden Tunnels and in the Suntemple.
  • Fixed bleeds in the office of the Golden Sickle and in Lightgrove.
  • Fixed navmesh in the heartlands and in Riverville.
  • The player can’t walk behind the exit of Old Ishmartep anymore.
  • Fixed the balcony door of Dal’Geyss Manor.
  • Fixed bounds in the Starship.
  • Fixed two world map icons.
  • Fixed moving boat in Duneville.
  • Fixed furniture in the Curarium.
  • Filled lackluster Cell Forbidden Tunnels.
  • The smith in Castle Dal'Galar is accessable.


Balancing:

  • Gagantua has more health (Bounty Quest, Ark).
  • More Merchants should now sell Ambrosia.
  • The Safe of the Foxhand's can only be opened with the key, it’s not a master lock anymore.
  • Placed two guards into the Bank to make bank robbery more difficult. Furthermore changed the Cell-Owner from Player to ArkBankFaction.
  • Aeterna boots now only need two shadowsteel ingots to be crafted.
  • Entropy spells have been slightly buffed in terms of damage.
  • Added two more "Magelight" spells with longer duration and higher magnitude, increased the duration of "Magelight, Rank II" by 15 seconds.


Localization:

  • Corrected the descriptions of the affinities.


Sound:

  • Fixed wrong soundmarker in duneville - tavern sounds were played in an empty area.

Enderal

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

MMORPG News - Shards Online

by Silver, 03:12

PCGamer takes a long look at Shards Online and finds it a relic, in a good way.

Shards Online immediately feels like a relic from a different era—and I don't mean that to be an insult. I discovered this when first trying to purchase a potion from a merchant and realized that there's no shopkeeper interface to work with. Instead, his stock is spread out on a table before him. By picking up an item, he'll tell me how much it costs. At first, it felt frustrating to add these extra steps to the process, like stepping into a McDonalds and having to order my 2 am shame nuggets from a human instead of zipping through the drive-through. But that old timey traditionalism is everywhere.

Once I adjusted to the pace at which Shards moves, I started to enjoy playing in a world where not everything is convenient. My backpack physically displays items in it so I'm reminded that even in videogames my life is a cluttered mess. Quests aren't marked with glowing exclamation marks above people's heads. And even figuring out how a skill or system works can require trial and error. If it wasn't for Derek Brinkmann, CEO of Shards' developer Citadel Studios, guiding me around for a bit, I'd probably be ghoul food by now.

For someone who has spent the last few months slaying demons in World of Warcraft, those differences almost feel alienating. Modern MMOs try to be such a smooth ride it's like slathering myself in butter before diving headfirst into a water slide. Shards, however, is content to let me feel every bump and knock on my way to figuring out what the hell I'm doing. Even a simple quest to check in on a gravekeeper became an hour-long affair because I was so used to having arrows mark every step of the way.

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MMORPG News

SP/MP: Massive
Setting: Unknown
Genre: MMORPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Path of Exile - Coming to Xbox One

by Silver, 03:05

Path of Exile will be getting a console release for Xbox One.

We're proud to announce that Path of Exile will be making its console debut on Xbox One later this year! The Xbox One version is also free-to-play and will contain all the content from the PC version, including the upcoming 3.0.0 expansion that includes Act Five. Check out the Xbox One Trailer here!

Xbox One players will play on their own realm, separate to the PC realm. This is due to small gameplay differences between the two versions, such as the number of Flask slots and how some skills are targeted. We intend to follow the same content and league release schedule on both the Xbox One and PC versions of Path of Exile.

We're really excited about this release. It represents over a year of work from a small strike team within our studio - the guys who also created our DirectX 11 version. We'll announce more information over the coming weeks!

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Path of Exile

SP/MP: Massive
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

World of Darkness - Werewolf: The Apocalypse

by Silver, 00:53

White Wolf has partnered with Focus Home Interactive to work on Werewolf: The Apocalypse.

White Wolf is pleased to announce its partnership with Paris-based video game publisher Focus Home Interactive for a licensed PC and console game set in the World of Darkness.

The partnership between Focus Home Interactive and White Wolf Publishing concerns the adaptation of a video game based on the acclaimed Werewolf: The Apocalypse. The game will be developed by the game development studio Cyanide (Styx: Master of Shadows, Blood Bowl, Call of Cthulhu...). In the game you will become a Garou, a rage-fuelled Werewolf warrior opposed to urban civilization and the destruction it brings. The Garou are born to fight the corruption of The Wyrm, a powerful supernatural force leading us towards an inevitable Apocalypse.

"The world is dying. When will you Rage? The core question of Werewolf: The Apocalypse is more relevant today than ever before and the cooperation with Focus and Cyanide will finally give gamers the opportunity to revel in the raw power and primal spirituality of the Garou. What is the price of saving the world with fang and claw? Find out for yourself as we explore the darkest corners of a dying planet.", says Martin Ericsson, Lead Story Teller of White Wolf.

"We are pleased to partner with White Wolf to bring Werewolf: The Apocalypse to life in a video game for consoles and PC. We are excited to work on the World of Darkness universe, as this is formidable playground to tell the players a great story. We are also happy to partner with Cyanide Studio in this adventure - they are behind the original wish to adapt this universe, and we are faithful in their ability to create a game that will please both fans of World of Darkness and newcomers", says Cédric Lagarrigue, President of Focus Home Interactive

"The World of Darkness universe has always attracted creatives with a strong passion for telling dark and immersive stories. So to work closely with the great talent at Focus Home and Cyanide exploring the Werewolves of this universe is an absolutely fantastic experience for us at White Wolf and we are more than excited to see this great IP realised in a video game", says Tobias Sjögren, CEO of White Wolf.

More information about this adaptation will come at this year's Focus Home Interactive event, "le What's Next de Focus", taking place in Paris on February 1st and 2nd.

White Wolf contact:

Tobias Sjögren, CEO

Non-RPG General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Thursday - January 19, 2017

Call of Cthulhu - Depths of Madness Trailer

by Silver, 22:32

Call of Cthulhu has a new trailer called 'Depths of Madness'.

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Website: http://www.callofcthulhu-game.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CallOfCthulhu...
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/coc_thegame

Lovecraft's twisted universe comes alive in Call of Cthulhu's Depths of Madness trailer

Developed by seasoned studio Cyanide, Call of Cthulhu for consoles and PC is an RPG-Investigation game blending psychological horror and stealth mechanics, in a deeply immersive world with an oppressive atmosphere. Today ushers in a new trailer, depicting protagonist Pierce’s submersion into the depths of madness, as he investigates a mysterious death on Darkwater Island, Boston.

Call of Cthulhu

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Historical
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

BattleTech - Last Song Done

by Silver, 21:55

Jon Everist has tweeted that the last song has been written for Battletech and is being taken to Orchestra. After will come analog synths and 'digital madness'.

BattleTech

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Quest For Glory IV - Heretical Quest

by Hiddenx, 20:55

Richard Cobbett (RPS) reports about a Hexen mod that re-creates Quest For Glory IV:

The RPG Scrollbars: A Heretical Quest For Glory


Now, as long-time readers of this column will know, there’s a few games I like to go back to on a regular basis. Ultima VII, of course, as one of the finest RPGs ever brought to our plane of existence by carol-singing angels who admittedly suck at QA. Quest For Glory IV, as pretty much the perfect fusion of adventure, RPG and, once again, crazy amounts of bugs. I adore Quest For Glory IV. So, this week, pardon my indulgence at just wanting to show you something cool:
Quest For Glory IV… for Hexen. [...]

Quest for Glory 1-5

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

No Truce With The Furies - Introducing Metric

by Silver, 20:53

No Truce With The Furies latest developer blog focuses on the Metric system. (No not the measurement system a game system.) Also check out these sketches for skill visuals.

...
In character creation you decide your Attributes. These 4 scores represent both your natural aptitude and learning cap in the 24 Skills that cover everything a human being needs to function. The rest of the game is spent fleshing out - and struggling against - these limitations. There are unexpected ways to overcome yourself. And inversely, being talented at something comes with a price.

For the real lowdown - instead of telling you how the Attributes help - let me tell you how they make things worse.

INTELLECT

A high Intellect makes you overly confident - a cocksure intellectual. You're vulnerable to flattery, and easily lose yourself in details. (The game becomes longer). While having a low Intellect makes you dim and superficial, prone to superstition and being plain wrong.

PSYCHE

A high Psyche comes with emotional turmoil - an unstable psychophant. Great willpower clashing with wild imagination. You may even lose your mind. While a low Psyche makes you uninspiring, inept at influencing people. Unsavoury things come out of your mouth.

PHYSIQUE

Okay, you're strong but so is your death drive - a mad man and a psycho killer. A high Physique needs to be tested, needs addiction, sex and physical confrontation. You lose your shit over small things. While being un-physical means vulnerable, un-streetwise. Lacking in animal cool.

MOTORICS

A Motoric character is too high strung - a bit of a cokehead. A quicksilver superdetective focusing fast and then reacting (too) sharply. While being low on Motoric means you're locked into yourself. The world has trouble finding you. You're clumsy and slow.

We've found combing these weaknesses produces more unique characters than combining strengths. Sure, there are strengths too. The obvious ones and the less obvious. More on those once we get to listing the actual Skills.

Til then,
the battle-worn design team of No Truce With The Furies.

No Truce With The Furies

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Unknown Realm: The Siege Perilous - Congratulations!

by Hiddenx, 20:47

The was Unknown Realm: The Siege Perilous C64-Kickstarter was very successful:

We did it!!

Wow! What a crazy finish to this campaign!

1,246 backers, over 500 comments, countless messages, tweets, Facebook and forum posts. You made this happen! Together we accomplished more than anyone thought was possible. Knowing that we are making this game for YOU will help us get through any challenges that lie ahead!

The immediate plan for us now is to get Megafounder up and running for our Paypal and late backers. We are hoping this will be done in the next day or two and we will update when it is.

This incredible part of the journey has come to a close but the adventure is just beginning! Now the real work starts. We are so honored by the support you have given to this project and we cannot wait to deliver this experience to you! We look forward to sharing our progress with you along the way!

And now maybe we can catch up on a little sleep for the first time in weeks! :)

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

-Bruce & Laura

Unknown Realm: The Siege Perilous

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Torment: Tides of Numenera - A New Take On Combat

by Hiddenx, 20:35

Here's a new trailer Torment: Tides of Numenera:

Torment: Tides of Numenera - A New Take On Combat

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The world of Torment: Tides of Numenera is rife with conflict. Although you can avoid or resolve dangerous situations in bloodless ways, using deception, persuasion or stealth, sometimes your decisions or even just a bad roll of the dice may mean that blood will need to be spilt. See how you can emerge from such conflicts victorious!

Torment: Tides of Numenera

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Technofantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

XCOM 2 - Long War Mod = Must-Play

by Hiddenx, 20:25

PC Gamer recommends the Long War mod for XCOM 2:

The Long War 2 mod is a must-play reinvention of XCOM 2

New classes, weapons, and a reworked campaign map successfully refresh this excellent strategy game.

The word 'mod' undersells The Long War 2. 'Mod' implies an aesthetic tweak, a UI correction, a new weapon perhaps. In fact this is XCOM 2 as developed in a parallel universe. The Long War 2 does add lots of new weapons, classes and skills, but all these service a set of bespoke design aims that turn XCOM 2 from a survival strategy game into a gradually paced army and territory management sim with expanded combat encounters.

For players that have mastered XCOM 2's story and power arcs, or now find them predictable, Long War 2 is an essential download. The mod forces you to break out of your habits and re-engage with the game again at the most basic level. Even soldiers are valued differently. You can field up to ten in a mission, and you start with a large roster. Consequently, losing agents isn't the body blow it can be in trad XCOM, and you have more room to experiment with ability and weapon combinations across your force.

Your whole stance as resistance commander feels different to ordinary XCOM 2, which forces you into a reactive position with must-fight emergency missions. In The Long War 2 missions are more like leads that you can choose to spend time and resources to follow up. Ordinary missions are precluded by an infiltration period that asks you to devote a squad to a location for a variable number of days. If they achieve a high degree of infiltration (represented by a percentage marker that ticks upwards with each day), they face weaker forces in that mission.

[...]

The changes bring a dose of 4X strategy to XCOM 2. This slows the pace considerably—this is the Long War, after all. This dilutes the impact and drama of an XCOM 2 campaign to an extent. The way the core game gives you a narrow stream of high-stakes decisions is one of the reasons I loved it so much when I reviewed it last year. However I've found it fascinating to see how XCOM's core mechanics work in this new context. The Long War 2 is a thoughtful and effective reworking of the XCOM 2 formula, and the new weapon, class and mission additions are slick and well-integrated—they could have come from Firaxis.

Speaking of Firaxis, it's great to see studios work with modders, particularly in instances where the mod team wants to substantially rework the studio's original vision. The result is a neat Earth-B take on the concept that unlocks hundreds of hours of extra playtime. The Long War 2 is out now, and it's free.

XCOM 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Sheltered - Update 1.5

by Hiddenx, 20:07

Here are the patch notes for the survival management game Sheltered V. 1.5:

Hey Community,

Firstly, a big shout out and thank you to everyone who took part in our recent patch beta and provided feedback. Thanks to your efforts not only have we made a few tweaks but we’ve also been able to take the build out of Beta and release it into the main game for everyone to enjoy.

Full patch notes are below:

  • 3 brand new difficulty settings: Easy, Hard and Hardcore.
  • Customisable difficulty options.
  • Updated the menu system to incorporate difficulty settings.
  • Fixed bug where the dog (and party) may not return from expeditions (this may not fix pre-existing issues in old saves)
  • Fixed bed covers layering issue
  • Fixed an issue where objects could be crafted on top of one another, or in places they should not be allowed (by the front doors)
  • Stopped paint eroding on walls
  • Removed some rogue pixels from a shelter door sprite
  • Updated breach tutorial popup text
  • Fixed bookshelf bug where it wouldn’t decrease the amount of books when deconstructed
  • Updated Horse Stable sprite
  • Stopped the family stating “the pet is hungry” hints when they are away from the shelter (Dog/Horse)
  • Stopped automated characters from repeatedly trying to use a bed which is at 0% integrity
  • Stopped pets getting stuck in partially constructed rooms
  • Fixed a bug where two deconstruction panels opening at the same time would cause the game to pause until ESC/B is pressed
  • Fixed bug where breachers would not enter if there was a dead body blocking the door
  • Updated encounter summary “victory” panel artwork
  • Unity updated to fix input issues
  • Fix for pink characters appearing in the OSX version.
  • Fix for lockpick text not appearing in the crafting panel.
  • Tweaks to scrolling speed in the map
  • We look forward to hearing what you think of the new additions to the game over on the forum page. Oh and good luck with Hardcore mode, you’ll need it…

Sheltered

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Lionheart - Ion Hardie Interview @RPGCodex

by Silver, 01:18

Ion Hardie, lead designer of Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader, was interviewed by the RPGCodex recently and had some interesting things to say.

Fairfax: Yes, most reviews focus on how the game got worse after Barcelona, and I agree, but the game deserved more credit.

Ion: We should have just made the game shorter, cut out England entirely and focused on the ending scene. We tried to do too much in the time we had. Black Isle was going under and was late with just about every milestone payment...we had to hire people that we didn't have their first paycheck for, which is always fun.

Fairfax: Did you get the milestone payments later?

Ion: We had to withhold the game eventually...at the end, they asked us to trust that they would pay us, but we had too many bad experiences for that. We did get the money, but only because we played hard ball...and Feargus was on our side.

In hindsight, it's one of the better stories of the development of the game, though we didn't think so at the time.

[...]

Fairfax: I'd like to ask about the creative aspects of the game.

Two users (RK-47 and Apan) asked something I've always wondered as well: why the decison to go with an Action RPG real-time combat system?

On one hand, with the SPECIAL system and the "Fantasy Fallout" codename, one might've expected turn-based combat. On the other hand, the vast majority of Black Isle games used real-time with pause. Unlike the other Black Isle games, in Lionheart the player cannot issue combat commands while the game is paused, which brings it closer to Diablo and similar games.

Ion: We had just launched Star Trek Away Team, and Black Isle wanted to create something that was an action take, and they thought we could do it, based on our Star Trek game. As we went along, sadly, we actually thought that issuing commands while paused would have been better (much better). However, our programmers had told me we couldn't go back and just "add that" without completely missing our development schedule.

Fairfax: Interesting, I don't think that was public knowledge.

MotherMachinae had another question about the combat system:
"If they went with real time then why they choose so high speed? You had to be under influence of some drugs that make slo-mo effect or something. Even with patch that slide speed it was still unbearable."

Ion: Honestly, I don't remember why we went with the exact speed that we did. The development schedule that we agreed to didn't leave us much time for experimentation, and we really needed it. When you are creating something brand new like that (and not just copying something else verbatim that works) there needs to be time to see what feels good and what doesn't, and then adjust. We really had to just start running pretty quickly.

I do want to be clear that we were still responsible for making a better game than we did. There were plenty of reasons you could point to that provided less than ideal conditions, but that's life. Overcoming obstacles is what it is all about...and if we were so dedicated to quality, we could have chosen another path. It was just tough when that path was probably going to lead us through some even rougher financial hardships.

It's only now, with so much more experience behind me, that I see the probable failure that awaited us. At the time, there was still hope that we would tie it together, somehow, into something fun.

Lionheart

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wednesday - January 18, 2017

The Lays of Althas: Sundered Order - Weapons

by Hiddenx, 22:48

Take a look at the weapons of The Lays of Althas: Sundered Order:

I hope you enjoyed our Christmas Update and our little New Year’s gifts, where we showed some of our level design and architecture work. We have bigger stuff coming, but to tide you over, we have a brief look at some weapons we’re working on.

I hope you enjoyed our Christmas Update and our little New Year’s gifts, where we showed some of our level design and architecture work. We have bigger stuff coming, but to tide you over, we have a brief look at some weapons we’re working on.

[...]

Thanks Farflame!

The Lays of Althas: Sundered Order

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Mass Effect: Andromeda - Craft and name Weapons

by Hiddenx, 22:30

PCGamesN reports that you can craft and name weapons in Mass Effect: Andromeda:

You can craft and name weapons in Mass Effect: Andromeda, and there’s a dedicated melee slot

You’ll be able to craft and name your own weapons - including a krogan-style hammer - in Mass Effect: Andromeda, confirms lead designer Ian Frazier on Twitter. Melee weapons also get their own dedicated slot as opposed to being a context-sensitive omni-blade slash (though your omni-blade will be your starting melee weapon, and can be upgraded).

[...]

Thanks Farflame!

Mass Effect: Andromeda

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Shooter-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

ELEX - New Screenshot

by Hiddenx, 22:27

There's a new ELEX screenshot on World of Elex:

The Worldhearts work day and night to revive the once dead land of Magalan.

Thanks Farflame!

ELEX

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release: In development

Details

Pillars of Eternity II - Obsidian Teaser

by Silver, 20:40

Obsidian have linked via twitter to a single image with a caption and a logo that indicates news about Pillars of Eternity II is coming soon.

Pillars of Eternity II

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Tyranny - Matt Maclean discusses Lore

by Silver, 20:35

@gameumentary Matt Maclean, lead narrative designer, is interviewed about Tyranny lore.

"We focused on the Edicts as the driving elements for the quests in the areas of our game," says MacLean, "and put a great deal of thought into the factions of the game, how they'd factor into the different solutions, and how we could create a matrix of different interactions (such as this faction would want an Edict broken, another would want it kept in place, another may not care but wants some other thing accomplished).

"We aimed to tell a story that had enough conflict to keep you going forward, enough choice in how it plays out, and enough so that you could see a different experience if you played it from the other side."

Throughout this process, MacLean constantly drew on his previous experiences with Obsidian, as well as inspirations from real-life and a variety of fantasy genres.

"At the risk of being overly self-referential," he explains, "I think Fallout: New Vegas was our single biggest inspiration. We knew we wanted that sort of mixed reputation system, a world more or less already ravaged by human brutality, and quests that feature you making bad situations maybe better, or maybe much worse. The game is real time with pause, not a first person shooter, and it's fantasy, not sci-fi, but at its core, despite these technical differences, the soul of Tyranny draws heavily from our work on New Vegas.

"Most of my inspiration comes primarily from real life - I could mine human history for evil ideas literally forever - more acts of evil and deceit are created in one day than we can put in a game that takes years to make. Games are probably the second most influential source for me. I'm not much of a reader and can usually only tolerate fantasy literature if it's interactive. I have a big place in my heart for the non-digital games in my life and draw a lot of inspiration from them: Warhammer (both the RPG and the game with man-Barbies), Ars Magica (and its successor Mage: The Ascension), Earthdawn, GURPS, and Paranoia all feel forever loaded into my brain's RAM.

Tyranny

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

RPGWatch Feature - Expeditions: Viking Preview

by Myrthos, 16:42

Forgottenlor returns from scouting out Expeditions: Viking and delivers an early report of what we can expect when it reaches our shores.

Anyone who has played Expeditions: Conquistador will feel at home with Expeditions: Viking. The combat isn't easy; you move across hex-based grids, can use various obstacles to take cover or block enemies, and have to use your combat skills to your advantage while avoiding being flanked. Fallen comrades can also gain wounds, which hinder their performance until they have healed. The game advertised early on that losing a battle is not the end, but can open up new opportunities. I lost the game's third battle on my first try, which pushed me back to camp, wounded. When I returned to the location of the battle, I got to try again to win the same battle with a significantly weaker group. I had no chance with them, so I just reloaded. However, if you want to play sort of an iron man mode, see if you can't rest up and try again. The number of different weapon styles in the game feel different enough to make combat really interesting and give the player a lot of different tactical options. For example, you can jab with a spear one hex away, and the spear has a specific skill which lets you retreat a hex without drawing an opportunity attack. This can let you squeeze in a tough shield fighter or a deadly two-handed fighter to protect your spear fighter, if need be. That makes combat challenging and fun. Most of the battles are against human opponents who have the same skills as your characters, but occasionally you get to fight animals. I even ran into two fights which end in your group wondering whether they've just experienced a paranormal event. In the end, your main character is left to interpet whether this event was a meeting with supernatural creatures or whether there is a more logical explanation.

Expeditions: Viking

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Necromunda: Underhive Wars - New Warhammer 40K RPG Announced

by Myrthos, 16:38

A new tactical turn-based RPG set in the Warhammer 40.000 universe, named Necromunda: Underhive Wars has been announced.

Focus Home Interactive and Rogue Factor to Adapt Games Workshop's Warhammer 40,000 Cult Classic into Necromunda: Underhive Wars

After a successful first collaboration on MordheimTM: City of the DamnedTM, released on PC and consoles, Focus Home Interactive and Rogue Factor today proudly announce a new partnership with Games Workshop to begin development of Necromunda: Underhive Wars, the adaptation of cult classic tabletop game Necromunda, set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe.

Necromunda: Underhive Wars is a turn-based tactical RPG. Rival gangs of ruthless warriors are locked in an endless war for control of the Underhive, a gigantic warren of derelict factories, rusted metal husks, and forgotten technologies. Anarchy, violence, betrayal and death rule this hellish place, long forsaken by any semblance of civilization.

"Rogue Factor's collaboration with Focus and Games Workshop is a story of trust, hard work, and true passion for the Warhammer Universe. Our adventure began by building the foundations of Mordheim: City of the Damned Early Access. Regarded as a highly successful and well-executed endeavour, the Early Access of Mordheim: City of the Damned gathered a vast number of passionate gamers that helped foster an amazing community and improved many aspects of the game. After a strong launch on PC and consoles, and an incredible experience with many lessons learned, the way was paved for our next step in conquering the tactical RPG genre: Necromunda: Underhive Wars."

- Yves Bordeleau, General Manager at Rogue Factor.

"We are delighted to welcome Necromuda: Underhive Wars to the catalogue of great games based on our worlds and settings. Rogue Factor and Focus Home Interactive made a wonderful Mordheim: City of the Damned game and having done such a great job they're clearly the right people to realize the nightmarish world of Necromunda. Now fans of this unique and highly influential IP will at last be able to pick up their stubber and search for cool archaeotech whilst wiping out rival gangs throughout the Underhive."

- Jon Gillard, Head of Licensing at Games Workshop.

More information will be unveiled at Focus' What's Next event in Paris, on February 1st and 2nd.

Necromunda: Underhive Wars

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Expeditions: Viking - Preview Build

by Silver, 08:23

Expeditions: Viking has been previewed by Complete Nonsense Reviews.

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If you’re anything like me, love serious RPGs with turn-based tactical combat, enjoy an interactive narrative with branching storylines and like the viking theme, then do not hesitate, add Expeditions: Viking to your Steam wishlist and stand-by for its full release sometime in the first quarter of 2017, I know I will.

Expeditions: Viking

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Expeditions: Conquistador - Review

by Silver, 07:50

Expeditions: Conquistador is reviewed by Complete Nonsense Reviews.

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Developed by Danish indie dev studio Logic Artists, Expeditions: Conquistador is an incredibly well-designed game, especially when you consider that this was their second release and their very first PC game, the first one being a mobile title.

Expeditions: Conquistador features quite a bit of content, branching storylines, challenging combat, some very interesting resource and party management mechanics and not to mention some pretty atmospheric music to boot.

Follow me on - Twitter: @StefaNonsense - Facebook: www.facebook.com/CNonsense

Expeditions: Conquistador

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Tuesday - January 17, 2017

Shroud of the Avatar - Conversation & Lock System

by Silver, 23:21

Portalariums latest newsletter explains the changes to the conversation window and lock system for Shroud of the Avatar.

New NPC Conversation Window

In Release 38, we are updating the conversation window used for interacting with NPCs to make it both more immersive and easier to use. For immersion, we are hiding almost all of the other interface elements, including all other chat and the hotbar. We are also placing the chat in the very middle of the screen where you are looking at the NPC in order to keep you focused on the interaction. We have also tried to keep the interface itself to as minimal as possible with very few borders and as much transparency in the elements as we can.

For ease of use, we are placing all the keywords in a toolbar at the bottom of the window. This toolbar will include every keyword you can use with the NPC including keywords relating to quests you are currently on and keywords learned from past conversations with that NPC. This saves you from having to scroll back to find keywords you might not remember. There will also be some hidden keywords to discover though, so exploration will still be rewarded. Above you can see the work in progress as of today.

[...]

Important Update to Keys and Locks in Release 38

[A Dev+ Forum Post by Keith "Sannio" Quinn]locked-cage

As you adventure throughout Novia and the Hidden Vale, you'll find that many keys now have a chance to break on each use.

Keys may have a good chance to break (such as the keys for the locked passages that interconnect underground scenes and the cages found in wilderness scenes throughout Novia), while others break about half the time (such as the key for the Kiln Cistern Alchemist's Workshop), and some will never break (such as special keys required for quests).

When a key breaks, a message will appear in your chat window telling you so: "Your key () broke during use."

If you use a lock for which you have several of the same key, only one key will break. (In other words, not all keys of that type will break, only one at a time.)

If there is ever a situation where more than one key type can be used to open a lock, the system will use a key that never breaks when one is available, otherwise it will use a key that has the greatest chance to break. (Note that we don't have this situation in the game yet, but an example would be "Prison Cell A" opened by either "Key for Prison Cell A" or "Warden's Key.")

Shroud of the Avatar

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: MMORPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Shadow Tactics - Review @PCGamer

by Silver, 22:51

PCGamer review Shadow Tactics and find it one of the greatest stealth games of the last decade.

Every enemy encounter is a piece of a huge clockwork puzzle, all orderly and repetitive. To succeed, you need to disrupt the pattern. The fun part is creating chaos with the toy box of abilities and experimenting with them. There’s a lot of joy to be found in playing around with different strategies, tearing out the best parts of failed attempts and stitching them together until you have one that finally works. The ability to save anywhere makes experimentation easier, and a timer lets you know when it's been a while since you last saved.

Sometimes a problem requires lateral thinking. In snowy areas guards take notice of suspicious footprints, which can ruin a plan if you're not careful. However, you can can also exploit guards' inquisitiveness and lay ambushes for those that blindly follow trails into empty corners.

Some problems demand teamwork, and that’s where Shadow Mode comes in. This lets you assign each character a job and activate them all at once. Used correctly, Shadow Mode lets you sweep away large groups of enemies in swift, decisive moves. It’s a thrill to hit a button and see your minions move in tandem.

Non-RPG General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Dungeons Of Aledorn - Eye Candy

by Hiddenx, 22:34

The devs of Dungeons Of Aledorn show some new screenshots in Kickstarter update #26:

Plenty of eye candy

   Greetings to all RPG lovers and fans of Dungeons of Aledorn. After a longer pause, we gathered enough material to release a new update. Although it’s far from finished, the project is still ongoing and right now we are aiming for a beta in the summer 2017. The beta should contain all core game mechanics and the main storyline including quests, equipment and battles. Please be patient as it is our first really big project and that is why our promised time schedule is more a guess than anything else.

   Back to the content of this update. We have finished a new location called “Voland”, the second largest city in the game located on an archipelago, specifically on The Sandemar’s Island. You can look at some awesome screenshots below. We also added short videos - the first one shows a cycle of day and night in the game, the other is introducing one of many dungeons.

[...]

The day and night cycle graphics demonstrated on Condra, the pirate hideout shown in the previous updates. Condra only needs to be populated with NPCs and treasures to become our first fully completed location. However, this final step requires a specific location editor which should be finished until February.

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[...]

 

Dungeons Of Aledorn

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Torn Tales - Released

by Hiddenx, 20:36

The Adventure RPG Torn Tales has been released today:

Lead your party of 3 heroes on their quest to repair the torn pages of folklore. Evil has destroyed the tales you love. Hack monsters and slash enemies throughout the Torn Tales in this real time squad based RPG.

You will wield the powers of Robin Hood, Snow White and Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde as they fight together in the dark landscape assembled by the evil Bookbinder. He has bound enemies from across the fabled lands to stop you, so be ready for the unexpected.

Master a rich tree of abilities to upgrade your characters. Choose load-outs that maximise your team’s total fighting potential. Swap lead character in combat to battle harder. Explore the lands of lore & fable, collecting loot with a vast array of variations from Geppetto’s Gold Ring of Shielding to Ahab’s Amulet of Fury.

Hone your skills and try out new ability combos in the endless Arena mode. See how you compare to the best players in the world through the global leaderboards.

Real time squad based RPG - lead a party of three heroes with distinct yet complementary skills.

Set in the torn landscape of classic folk tales - where evil has infected the worlds of fantasy as we know them.

Deep skill tree - unlock and upgrade the unique abilities of each character such as Hyde’s madness or Snow White’s poison apple.

Loot - thousands of possible artefacts to collect that boost your skills/abilities with unique combinations.

Character swap mechanic - change your tactics mid-battle for different strategies and abilities.

5 Unique realms - visit the realms stolen from the tales and battle a variety of monsters unique to the world. Reach the end and defeat the bosses that you know so well.

Arena mode - endless non-stop battles with a vast array of monsters and enemies.

Global leaderboards - compete with players around the world in the arena mode to see who can endure the longest.

Torn Tales

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Xanadu Next - Review @ GUN

by Hiddenx, 20:19

The Gaming Untion has reviewed Xanadu Next:

Xanadu Next Review


Over the years, Nihon Falcom has become a well-known and loved developer to both fans of action and RPGs alike, due to the mix of great gameplay and narrative they spin into each of their creations. What’s interesting about the latest Falcom title publisher XSEED Games has brought over, however, is that unlike the frantic action of the Ys games (or the more narrative focus of its later entries) or the RPG-bent of the Trails series, Xanadu Next has an older bent to it. So how does that hold up in today’s era, even with some minor upgrades to run better on today’s modern systems?

[...]

While the gamepad controls aren’t quite up to par, the core gameplay of Xanadu Next is still exceptionally solid and is a great window into the earlier development aspects of Nihon Falcom before their more recent releases as of late. Western gamers never got the chance to play the “true” version of this title, getting cut-down releases of the game, so getting the real thing is a joy. If you have a PC and mouse handy, it’s worth your time to enjoy some good, classic action RPG goodness.

Score: 7/10

Xanadu Next

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details