Battle Brothers announced
Jan Taaks of Overhype Studios writes in to announce the development of Battle Brothers, which he describes as a turn-based strategy game with RPG and management elements. A better way to describe this game, however, would probably be to just call it “fantasy X-COM.”
In the game you take on the role of a leader of a band of mercenaries and adventurers on the hunt for treasure, fame and legendary artifacts. As you journey onwards, an epic scale invasion unfolds that leaves nothing but burning rubble in its wake. You and your Battle Brothers emerge as the people’s last hope to unravel the source of the invasion and strike at its heart.
This “fantasy X-COM” thing seems to be a new trend, with BB joining Knights-Errant as part of a wave of indie fantasy strategy games with a team management overworld layer and turn-based tactical battles in between. (If we view the trend as slapping a strategy layer onto traditional RPG gameplay, then I think we have to include Heroes of a Broken Land here as well.)
BB doesn’t have a trailer yet, but it does have a pretty huge pre-alpha gameplay video with developer commentary:
Here is the list of planned features for when the game is completed:
- Procedurally generated. Worldmap, combat maps, characters and even the nature of the invasion itself are procedurally generated. No two games will ever be alike!
- Open and dynamic world. No boring linear missions, you decide where to go and what to do! But with choice come consequences – the world will change permanently as the invasion sweeps the lands, and you may just find a town burned to the ground if you don’t come to its aid.
- Permadeath – decisions really matter. If a Battle Brother is killed in combat he is dead forever, his experience and skills will be lost. So you better think twice about that suicide charge with your most experienced Brother.
- Complex yet intuitive mechanics. Below the surface is a complex system working but we dont want players to study manuals and tutorials all day long. If it makes sense in real life it makes sense in Battle Brothers.
- Huge tactical combat maps. This is not checkers, this is a grown-up combat simulation. Field up to 12 Battle Brothers at the same time on huge combat maps. Send your rangers through the woods into the back of the enemy while your armored shieldbearers stall the enemy attack.
- Height levels in combat maps. Use the high grounds for your tactical advantage! Increase the range of your archers or repell overwhelming attacks against unsurmountable enemy numbers.
- Diverse enemy roster. Enemies don’t just differ in name. All enemies have unique skills and unique AI behavior, and you have to adjust your tactics if you want to stand a chance.
- Character development. Each Battle Brother gains experience through combat. Level them up and aquire new, powerful skills and abilities to fit your own strategy.
- No restrictive class-system. Your Battle Brother’s skills and abilities are given by their equipment and level. You want to make an all ranged squad? The only limitations is whether it stands the test on the field of battle!
- Detailed inventory system. Equip your Battle Brothers with weapons, arms, armor and powerful accessories.
- What you see is what you get. Every piece of equipment your Battle Brothers are wearing is displayed on the tactical map. This allows for making your troops look like you really want them to!
- Dynamic damage display. See your Battle Brothers smash shields, get their armor shredded to pieces or get beaten to a pulp! Of course the same goes for the enemies.
- Full fledged crafting system. Find and research new crafting recipes, gather resources and craft deadly weapons and impenetrable armor.
Hell–that sounds pretty good to me.
The developers estimate that they’ll have this one out by mid-2014 (though that seems a little overly optimistic to me, given that they don’t yet have the overworld strategy layer running). Battle Brothers will be for Windows, Mac and Linux. No word yet on whether there’ll be any Battle Sisters involved.