Posted in May 26, 2015 ¬ 12:01 pmh.Craig Stern1 Comment »
Word reaches me that there’s a new roguelike in town: Cogmind. Developed by the Taiwenese one-man studio Grid Sage Games, Cogmind is a sci-fi affair–you play as a robot that can reconfigure itself using parts scavenged from the shattered bodies of its enemies.
Experience sci-fi tactical combat and exploration in a procedural world that combines traditional roguelikes with an immersive modern interface like no other. Build yourself from components found or salvaged from other robots. Attach power sources, propulsion units, utilities, and weapons to become a slow tank bristling with weapons, or a fast-moving flier zipping past enemies before they even have time to react, or a stealthy sword-wielding assassin/hacker, or whatever else you can come up with from the salvage you find. The situation can quickly change as you lose components and rebuild yourself from enemy remains. You are the Cogmind. Discover what that means as you explore a living, breathing world ruled by robots.
As you can see from the trailer, Cogmind employs ASCII graphics, though it does so with a panache that one doesn’t generally see in traditional ASCII roguelikes:
The feature list:
Build and modify a unique robot from parts found, or enemies defeated
Dynamic character development without XP/grinding
Procedurally generated world combined with hand-crafted content
ASCII evolved: Most advanced terminal interface ever
Thousands of particle effects and SFX
Fully destructible environment
The developer posits this as something analogous to a full, version 1.0 release, but he wants to continue working on the game, so he’s calling this an alpha. (This is, of course, par for the course with roguelikes, which can be complete and playable and yet subject to further development for decades.)
You can snag Cogmind direct from Grid Sage Games for $30. Windows only.
The demo contains the first handful of battles and cut scenes in the game, plus a small taste of the local multiplayer mode (you’re limited to the same 5-member army on a small 1-v-1 map, fighting against the computer). The demo runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux; you can nab it here.
Artur Diodorov of Ukrainian indie developer Red Beat writes in to announce Space Rogue, a sci-fi outer space roguelike in the FTL style that has just entered the paid alpha stage.
The premise of this one is pretty simple:
You’re in a command of a little spaceship with a crew of few members. Fight, gather resources, upgrade your spaceship and crew in order to become space adventurer #1.
From what I can tell, this game takes the FTL formula and makes some tweaks. The art style is nicer, for one thing, and it seems to offer some pretty extensive rules customization. From the sound of things on Steam, it also cuts out certain features from FTL (like shunting power to different systems or having each individual member of your crew man those different systems for a boost). You can see at least some of this for yourself in the release trailer:
The one thing that isn’t clear to me is whether you’re permitted to roam the universe at will, or whether you’re constantly weighing the potential benefits of exploration with the risk of being overtaken by an encroaching fleet (as you are in FTL). I’m guessing it’s the former, as early access players have mentioned being able to backtrack to earlier star systems.
The game’s planned feature list reads as follows:
Every walkthrough differs from the next – unique game world is generated each time you start a new game
6 races of enemies with distinctive features and battle tactics
Fast and exciting space battles
More than 200 random events and quests
Sandbox mode in which you can fine-tune the game world generation and some core parameters of the game
Posted in May 19, 2015 ¬ 3:20 pmh.Craig Stern1 Comment »
Nathaniel Weiss has sent word (or should I say, brought song?) of a new procedural Zelda-alike he and the rest of Wizard Fu Games are developing. In case you haven’t guessed, that would be Songbringer.
You may recall me mentioning Songbringer in our last Back to Back; the game got funded to the tune of 167% of its goal, and now development begins in earnest. The premise:
you journey through procedurally-generated worlds overflowing with recently awakened demons, virus androids and other sullied creatures. Along the way you will uncover long lost devices and combine them into powerful artifacts. If you are skilled with the nanosword you will vanquish giants and save a planet from being overrun.
This isn’t the first procedurally generated Zelda-alike we’ve seen–there’s King Voxel and Lenna’s Inception, to name two–but this might be the most visually rich one to swing around the block thus far:
The planned feature list includes:
Procedurally generated – over 300 million possible worlds
Deterministic six-letter world seed always creates the same world on any platform
1 world seed uniquely generates: 1 overworld, 9 dungeons, 9 bosses, 25 combinable items and at least 200 secrets
Roguelike-inspired permadeath option with extra rewards for players who dare so greatly
Online leaderboard highlighting the top players based on completion time, percentage of secrets uncovered and game mode (regular or permadeath)
An epic science fiction narrative featuring a spacecutter named Songbringer, its crew of art-warehouse comrades, psychedelic cacti, an ancient evil army, and the Second Great War of Wizards
8-bit pixel art fused with 32-bit shaders and 3D effects
Songbringer is being developed for “PC, Mac, Linux and possibly iOS, Android, PS4 and Xbox One.” Weiss writes that the game is currently about 30% completed; the earliest possible release would be at the end of 2015.
Posted in May 18, 2015 ¬ 10:00 amh.Craig Stern1 Comment »
Andrew Sutton of British indie studio Flaming Eye Games writes in to announce OneSamurai: Dusk, an RPG he’s developing set in feudal Japan.
Sutton describes the game as a “tactical RPG,” but you can recruit no more than 3 companions over the course of the game, which pretty clearly indicates that this game does not actually belong to that particular subgenre. Rather, OneSamurai appears to be an open-world wRPG that just happens to have turn-based combat.
The year is 1274 and the Kamakura Shogunate is celebrating the 82nd year since its establishment by Minamoto no Yoritomo. The current shogun Prince Koreyasu is also celebrating his 10th birthday under the regency of Hojo Tokimune. But all is not as stable as it seems. Only 16 years earlier the ruling Goryeo dynasty of Korea was forced to swear fealty to Kublai Khan the grandson of Genghis Khan and his Mongol Horde. Kublai Khan has aspirations to conquer from the coast of the Atlantic to the coast of the Pacific and his gaze may soon fall east. Inside Japan’s borders itself many different clans vow for land, power and strength and some for the chance to eventually rule the land of the rising sun for themselves. You start as a single man with no clan, land, power or strength but in end may have the potential to divert the course of Japanese history.
OneSamurai is 3D, and graphically speaking, it bears a passing resemblance to Iron Tower’s Age of Decadence engine:
The game’s planned features include:
Turn based tactical combat
Stats based leveling
Open world map with over 50 unique villages, towns, cities & castles.
Over 150 quests covering events of Kamakura Shogunate and clan quarrels
3 main different classes with different play styles
3 different companions with different play styles to complement your own or oppose it
Decisions system which can change the outcome of the final game.
Ability to import character from this game to next
Over 30 Different Clan with the chance to help these clans in territorial conflict and increase their personal strength.
OneSamurai: Dusk is the first part of a planned trilogy–Sutton states that “Night” and “Dawn” will eventually follow Dusk, with each reflecting changed historical circumstances later in the Kamakura Shogunate.
OneSamurai: Dusk is planned for release on Windows, Mac and Linux in summer 2015 (which presumably means that the game is already finished and is now in the “fixing final bugs” stage, given that summer 2015 is right on top of us). There’s a free playable demo of OneSamurai’s turn-based combat system available for download right here. The full game is on Steam Greenlight, where it awaits your upvote.
Annie Mitsoda of DoubleBear Productions writes in to announce that they’ve just released a special enhanced edition of the zombie apocalypse-themed wRPG Dead State on Steam and GOG.
You can check out our first impressions piece on the original Dead State release here. The devs state that the new enhanced edition features smarter AI, a new Hardcore mode, rebalanced items, overhauled combat balance, new animations, new sound effects, and new areas to explore. Buildings can also now have alarm systems present for you to deactivate (and which can attract zombies if you accidentally set them off). Here’s the full changelog.
And here’s a trailer:
Dead State: Reanimated is free for players who already own the vanilla release of Dead State–and those who do not will get the update automatically when they buy the game. Dead State is $29.99 on Steam and on GOG; Windows only.
Posted in May 13, 2015 ¬ 3:02 pmh.Craig Stern1 Comment »
Saulo Camarotti writes in to announce the release of Chroma Squad. Created by Brazilian indies Behold Studios (whom you might recall as the developers behind Knights of Pen and Paper), Chroma Squad is a strategy RPG themed after the goofy 1990s TV show Power Rangers.
It’s not merely inspired by the show, however–it’s inspired by the very act of making the show:
Chroma Squad is a tactical RPG about five stunt actors who decide to quit their jobs and start their own Power Rangers-inspired TV show!
Cast actors and purchase upgrades for your studio, craft weapons and giant Mechas out of cardboard. Once the cameras are rolling, you will control your cast of five colored-jumpsuit-clad warriors in dramatic turn-based battles!
It’s an interesting narrative take on the strategy RPG formula, for sure. And in case there was any room for doubt as to how not-seriously this game takes itself, here’s the release trailer:
The developers have provided the following official feature list:
Create your own TV studio: hire actors, upgrade your equipment, do marketing, craft weapons, costumes and giant cardboard robots!
Tactical RPG combat with a twist: combine your heroes’ abilities with Teamwork maneuvers!
In-Depth RPG systems with skill trees, random equipment, crafting, and branching storyline!
A love letter to tokusatsu and the Japanese series of our childhood!
Deliciously-animated pixel art and a chiptune soundtrack that shines like justice!
I bet you didn’t expect two episodes of IndieRPGs.com Checks Out within one day of each other, did you? What can I say–I like to keep you guys guessing!
Today, it is my pleasure to check out the public alpha of Battle Brothers by Overhype Studios. Developer Jan Taaks was good enough to send a copy my way recently. In fact, he’s been offering me copies of this game as far back as February 2014, but I wanted to wait until it was a little more feature complete to give it a look. Now seemed like the right time, and so I sat down with it and recorded the experience. Here is what happened:
Posted in May 11, 2015 ¬ 11:25 amh.Craig Stern1 Comment »
I recently had the good fortune to receive a copy of Dragon Fantasy: The Volumes of Westeria, courtesy of Adam Rippon of Muteki Corporation. As is my wont, I checked out the beginning of the game while recording the experience: