|06-25-2007, 03:52 PM||#1|
MDL & Resource Moderator
(1) This Wreckage
This Wreckage -- An Adventure
The sequel I promised I'd never make.
(1) When the Freedom Slips Away [a.k.a. RDZ's All-In-One Micro Map X] (controversial)
(8) RDZArena (feature creep)
(1) The Islands in the Sky Series (no longer available)
(1) The RDZ Micro RPG XK (unfinished, unreleased, unloved)
The RDZArena was a tech demo for this project (though it didn't know it at the time).
I once assured fans that there would never be a sequel to When the Freedom Slips Away.
However, due to the astounding shortage of singleplayer maps of even reasonable quality, I took it upon myself to create another RPG in the same style as WtFSA -- carrying on and expanding on its systems. Upon finally stripping down the RDZArena and assembling the new map's most basic features, I found my love for Henrik and his friends too great; and so His Majesty the Emperor's Expedition Force sets forth once again to battle evil in tropical lands thousands of miles from home.
Half comic, half serious, just the way we like it.
Genre: role-playing game
Tileset: Sunken Ruins (groan)
Size: 160x160 (152x152)
As His Majesty the Emperor's Expedition Force sets down on the shores of a mysterious continent, dark forces are already massing against them...
The very same weapon system about which I wrote a tutorial all those years ago continues to exist. Most of the items seen in the RDZArena and When the Freedom Slips Away have been carried forward; and are joined by many new ones (complete with new weapon attachment and ground item models).
Item stacking was initially developed for WtFSA, and also takes its rightful place in the sequel. A few more items, such as throwable rocks, join the main potions and scrolls in being stackable.
Skill Selection System
I wanted to bring some of the very old Islands in the Sky class stuff back to life (since I somehow could not get a new IitS map started) -- and this is the result. You begin with only 'Attribute Bonus' -- at key points in the game (yes, including the end of the intro cinematic), you will be allowed to choose a new hero ability from a small selection, including old favourites, some new ones, and hopefully some resurrected IitS kit. The system is confirmed to be working, though, so production of the actual abilities is not a priority right now. One possibility is that abilities be used to increase/decrease 'difficulty' -- so-called easy abilities being simple direct damage/heals and the like, while 'hard' abilities might have lesser or harder to master effects.
Nothing new here, except that you get two packs, as I have implemented some 'junk' items that you can sell (or give to certain people for a better price), á la Baldur's Gate (mmm, billions of gemstones worth 2gp each). Twelve spare slots should do the job. Some quests also involve collecting non-stacking items, so the double pack will always be necessary.
(Improved) Music System
Carried forward again from WtFSA; with some reasonably notable improvments. The battle music will time-out if you run away from a fight (or are not struck for a reasonable length of time, consistent with cowardice), but, more importantly, the ambient theme will restart from where it left off when the battle/cinematic music ends; rather than going back to zero.
This is potentially the most controversial system addition. RDZ's All-In-One Micro Map X (WtFSA's working title -- ie, the map in its earliest stages) had all its RPG-esque sections in the camera-lock form, á la Warchasers. This was eventually scrapped, due to the base-building and tower defence sections not making use of Henrik -- the lock simply did not work well with the constant game-type switching.
This Wreckage is going to be almost entirely RPG-orientated; and if not that, then with AoS- or defence-style sections -- Henrik will always be your focus, aside from a few occasional controllable reinforcements, summons, or people to escort. To cater for this, the camera will switch to the selected unit (always choosing Henrik if he is selected alongside others) -- but to combat the issue of being unable to see much in the locked view, the left and right arrow keys can increase/decrease the distance to target (so you can zoom out and see everything, or zoom in and admire the world up close). Up and down arrow keys used to control Z offset, since the RDZ Micro RPG XK made use of some funky terrain (read: massive raise tool abuse) that made this property necessary -- however, This Wreckage is mostly pleasantly flat and making use only of standard cliffs. Suggestions for another useful camera option may be accepted, if you can think of anything (not rotation or angle of attack, the game can already do them enough by default).
When you've just died and loaded your last save, you don't want to watch the same dialogue over and over again -- one of the major factors, I suspect, of people dropping longer singleplayer maps instead of seeing them through to the end. While making cinematics fully skippable requires a little effort, the over-all benefits are worth the toil. Since cinematics in This Wreckage are, as in When the Freedom Slips Away, almost entirely dialogue-based, skipping cinematics will allow the player to avoid tiresome waits while the characters finish pouring out their lines in an appropriate length of silence for the third time running. Of course, skipping cinematics without having watched them at all will mean you miss out on the plot, and even the odd hint for completing the following quest.
Fuckloads of Custom Stuff
Every weapon or shield has a custom model to fit it snugly in our hero's hands (or, for that matter, the hands of his friends and enemies alike), and most of them have custom icons to boot. A lot of spell effects have been lightly twiddled ('when white turns to red,' and the Pure Energy/Electricity/Antenergy colour scheme) to add to the immersion, and there are a few new doodads scattered around. Then there's custom unit models -- creeps, bosses, the humanoid races from the RDZArena (the Angel has been severely updated, but does not play a role in the plot -- yet)... All lovingly edited to maintain quality and style while adding requisite new features.
I'd rather reveal as little as possible about the story right now -- suffice to say, there's a new bad-guy, a new land to explore, and new lore additions and consolidations (most of these, sadly, remain in my head and are not aluded to -- their presence is felt, however); however, there are occasional nods to the previous events (and specific lore) of WtFSA, and all your favourite Expedition charaters make a return. The story assumes that you completed WtFSA entirely -- including the successful resolution of all side quests. While you could play This Wreckage without having suffered WtFSA, I would not recommend it. Oh, I'm angling for multiple endings too, though that is still up in the air.
This Wreckage is set in a beautiful tropical landscape, centred around an ancient temple.
There are five regions to the map; the temple itself, the western annex (the beach), the southern annex (the swamp), the eastern annex (the jungle), and the northern annex (the mountain).
The temple is crumbling, its annexes long destroyed by choking vines and rampant foliage; and there are frequent holes in its walls. However, only the western portal (leading to the beach) has been sundered by the ravages of time -- the other three gates remain locked and sealed, impervious to damage.
Western Annex -- The Beach
Southern Annex -- The Swamp
Western Annex -- The Jungle
Play begins on the beach, where the Expedition have set up camp. As Henrik unravels the secrets of this land, access to the other regions is granted. This will not, however, make previously 'completed' regions redundant -- new 'events' and side quests, also revealed as Henrik progresses, will keep these areas worth passing through and ease the monotony of back-tracking.
The main plot-line quests are about half done; however, there is still a lot of space for side quests and general goings-on in the world, so the map is about... A third to half done, would be a conservative estimate. The incomplete map is being regularly tested by a small team (uh, cycling through most of my Warcraft contacts), and so far, the response has been favourable.
Credits (So Far)
All custom elements created/adapted from Blizzard originals by me, except the following.
Theme music -- Gary Numan
Game Music -- from Unreal and Deus Ex
Sounds sampled from songs:
HAI! sound -- Ultravox, Western Promise
Female critical hit sound -- Orchestral Manouevres in the Dark, Tesla Girls
Teleport sound -- Simple Minds, I Travel
Power-up/shield sound -- ZZ Top, Viva Las Vegas
Double-damage power-up code:
NEHZ, Darkdraak, SeruK, Captain Griffen
Special thanks to:
Guesst for his Milkshape exporter.
Magos for his model editor.
Oinkerwinkle for his MDL tools.
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|06-25-2007, 06:47 PM||#3|
MDL & Resource Moderator
Hard to say.__________________
I have got all summer absolutely free until mid-september, so hopefully the main plot elements will all be solid, bug free and done by then, and a good load of side quests and events too.
It'll be released when it's ready. =P
|06-28-2007, 05:52 PM||#10|
MDL & Resource Moderator
(Quantifiable) Progress: started terraining work on the mountain cave (finally).__________________
2000 or so doodads to go for about two ninths of the map area -- think I can manage it?
Last edited by Rao Dao Zao : 06-28-2007 at 06:15 PM.
|06-28-2007, 06:55 PM||#12|
MDL & Resource Moderator
Removed from official circulation due to general lack of quality.__________________
They were necessary rungs on the ladder, yes, but they no longer meet my standards.
|06-28-2007, 09:01 PM||#14|
. . .
Join Date: Oct 2006
Was expecting that. Its true RDZ Arena and WtFSA were much better. Oh well, so much for a piece of RDZ history. :P
They were crappy maps anyway. :D
Last edited by WILL THE ALMIGHTY : 06-28-2007 at 09:02 PM.
|06-28-2007, 09:06 PM||#15|
MDL & Resource Moderator
The history remains on my hard-disk, to be wheeled out at opportune moments.__________________
In other news, I was poking around YouTube for a song video or somesuch... Only things I got, however, were dodgy and home-baked live videos.
Best quality would appear to be this one:
The version of the song that I am using is, of course, the lovely, audience-less, clean and shiny, digitally-remastered album track.
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