MMX at PAX East: Short Preview

The role-playing games (I-X) that started it all and the various spin-offs (including Dark Messiah).

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Kalah
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MMX at PAX East: Short Preview

Postby Kalah » Apr 8 2013, 23:43

TeTsUo was one of the fans visiting PAX East during the demonstration of Might & Magic X: Legacy. I had him sum up his experience for us:

"First off I had a giant blasty blast with the people from Ubisoft. Truly a very classy and laid back bunch of people. What I felt overall was the coolest thing ever, is talking to your fellow gamers (who also happen to be Ubisoft employees) about some of the best games you have ever played and having the very same experiences that they have had! I believe that most gamers out there think of game companies as only employed by robot-like people, who churn out title after title. I really wish this stigma would disappear! It is disheartening to think that most people only think about the end result, and do not realize that there is a human being putting their all into every ounce of a project. But alas, this is how culture seems to think nowadays. Either that or I am getting too old... oddly enough I can picture myself hovering on a porch 50 years from now in lotus position yelling out to kids: "Those damn youngin's an' their blasting their holo-player zx5s!"

I am very grateful for everything that Julien, Erwan, Irina, and Kurt
shared with us (what that is I cannot tell you because it is classified :tongue: ) and am indebted to you all for such a great time. I really think that it
would be a nice gesture if all game companies did something along these
lines all the time... even if only for a few hours (maybe they do and I am
naïve).

Now as far as the demo goes, I am going to keep it very short. It was the shortest demo I have every played! But given what it was created for, I think it hit its mark successfully. It has a tremendous amount of potential, and puts an ungodly amount of pressure on the team behind it. I would say take your time, and do it right. Because anything rushed at this point would really tick off the fans. They will be able to spot it from a mile away. Quality above quantity! After all it is called "Legacy", no? Gotta live up to the name :) You guys can and will do it right! As they say in Japan: GANBATTE!!!!"
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Postby Variol » Apr 9 2013, 0:50

I think that's what bothers me the most. I know that people put their blood, sweat and tears into the games, but so often we get the game(s) and say "what the heck?"

I think that "pride" is the biggest down in new games. I has to be bigger, better and need "not yet invented" hardware to run it.
That may actually be an area where MMX can win. The fact that they're thinking "smaller" can be a good thing.
I strongly recommend the ability to "roll" character stats and picking all starting skills, not just. It will help a lot with playability. I'm guessing that will not happen though.

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Postby Arret » Apr 9 2013, 1:51

As long as the MMX team knows its audience, the game should be fine.

The issue is that using tile gameplay is going to appeal to a much smaller faction of an already limited base of MM fans, as can be shown in the thread about favorite game with 6 and 7 absolutely crushing everything else.

Low budget is fine for a game like this. The type of people that should be interested are far more focused on gameplay and story than a normal market. The question is how much appeal will it generate with those new to the series?

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Re: MMX at PAX East: Short Preview

Postby Dharcness » Apr 9 2013, 5:38

Kalah wrote:
Now as far as the demo goes, I am going to keep it very short. It was the shortest demo I have every played!


Are they going to release this demo for us (the public) to play around?

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Postby Kalah » Apr 9 2013, 10:23

Not this one, no - it was a very early version. But I have asked the devs if a demo will be available. I have also asked about a beta test. Hoping for some info on this soon.
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Postby hellegennes » Apr 9 2013, 13:38

Arret wrote:As long as the MMX team knows its audience, the game should be fine.

The issue is that using tile gameplay is going to appeal to a much smaller faction of an already limited base of MM fans, as can be shown in the thread about favorite game with 6 and 7 absolutely crushing everything else.

Low budget is fine for a game like this. The type of people that should be interested are far more focused on gameplay and story than a normal market. The question is how much appeal will it generate with those new to the series?


Well that poll was answered by a few tens of people, I don't really think Ubisoft is releasing MMX for 50 people. Of course some MM fans will not play the game because of this, but Ubisoft aims at a far larger audience than just old fans.

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Postby Dharcness » Apr 9 2013, 14:20

hellegennes wrote:
Arret wrote:As long as the MMX team knows its audience, the game should be fine.

The issue is that using tile gameplay is going to appeal to a much smaller faction of an already limited base of MM fans, as can be shown in the thread about favorite game with 6 and 7 absolutely crushing everything else.

Low budget is fine for a game like this. The type of people that should be interested are far more focused on gameplay and story than a normal market. The question is how much appeal will it generate with those new to the series?


Well that poll was answered by a few tens of people, I don't really think Ubisoft is releasing MMX for 50 people. Of course some MM fans will not play the game because of this, but Ubisoft aims at a far larger audience than just old fans.


Me thinks ubisoft was looking at Legend of Grimrock sales before deciding to create MMX. Question is, anybody knows how many copies of Legend of Grimrock were sold?

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Postby forgottenlor » Apr 9 2013, 15:06

I don't know any numbers per say, but if you look at most sold games at either GOG or Gamersgate, LOGR does have a very respectable place comparatively. It also got covered by a lot of websites and got very good reviews, including some RPG of the year awards. In any case it did well enough for Almost Human to be making a sequel.

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Postby Bandobras Took » Apr 9 2013, 15:50

Arret wrote:The issue is that using tile gameplay is going to appeal to a much smaller faction of an already limited base of MM fans, as can be shown in the thread about favorite game with 6 and 7 absolutely crushing everything else.


I'd like 6 and 7 more if they were tile-based, not less. Looking at the thread, I'm not seeing the lack of tile-based structure to be a deciding factor in making 6 and 7 prominent.
Far too many people speak their minds without first verifying the quality of their source material.

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Postby hellegennes » Apr 9 2013, 16:59

Bandobras Took wrote:
Arret wrote:The issue is that using tile gameplay is going to appeal to a much smaller faction of an already limited base of MM fans, as can be shown in the thread about favorite game with 6 and 7 absolutely crushing everything else.


I'd like 6 and 7 more if they were tile-based, not less. Looking at the thread, I'm not seeing the lack of tile-based structure to be a deciding factor in making 6 and 7 prominent.


They wouldn't work this way. The way they were developed as worlds was different, their philosophy was different. It's like so many people saying that tablets replace netbooks. No, they do not, they are not built around the same principles and do not share characteristics. But I'm going off-topic. The thing is that they would be different games if they were tile-based. A lot of the gameplay elements are based on the notion that they are free-roaming. Too many things would not work the same way.

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Postby Bandobras Took » Apr 9 2013, 17:25

But the things that made me vote for 7 overall would: the overall atmosphere, the coherent story, the choices in the plot, the more compact (without being too compact) dungeons, the PC Portraits, Arcomage, the pop culture references, the string of journals regarding the war of the Temple of the Sun and the Temple of the Moon, etc.

All by way of saying that it's a bit of a leap to assume that not having 6 and 7 tile-based is the primary reason people voted for them. Indeed, were that the case, then one would expect more even distribution from 6-9.
Far too many people speak their minds without first verifying the quality of their source material.

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Postby GreatEmerald » Apr 9 2013, 20:53

hellegennes wrote:They wouldn't work this way. The way they were developed as worlds was different, their philosophy was different. It's like so many people saying that tablets replace netbooks. No, they do not, they are not built around the same principles and do not share characteristics. But I'm going off-topic. The thing is that they would be different games if they were tile-based. A lot of the gameplay elements are based on the notion that they are free-roaming. Too many things would not work the same way.


Depends on tile size, actually. If the tiles were like the ones in HoMM4 battles, then it would have worked just fine. Maybe even better than free roaming, actually, for those of us who play MM6-8 in turn-based mode. Being able to move relatively fluidly (as opposed to dodging) while still being in turn-based mode would have been very nice indeed.

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Postby hellegennes » Apr 9 2013, 21:55

But I'm not referring to battles. Battles would work this way, since the game was designed to accommodate both turn-based and real-time fights.; a host of other things wouldn't, though. For example, fly would not work the same way, nor would you be able to hide inside corners or behind objects, in dungeons. There are a lot more that I could think of, but I'm really tired right now so I'll leave it at that.

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Postby GreatEmerald » Apr 9 2013, 22:12

hellegennes wrote:But I'm not referring to battles. Battles would work this way, since the game was designed to accommodate both turn-based and real-time fights.; a host of other things wouldn't, though. For example, fly would not work the same way, nor would you be able to hide inside corners or behind objects, in dungeons. There are a lot more that I could think of, but I'm really tired right now so I'll leave it at that.


No, it would work just fine. It's just that when you fly, you move two tiles in one turn. And how wouldn't you be able to hide? Tiles would allow for much easier pathfinding for enemies, yes, but that would make it better, not worse.

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Postby hellegennes » Apr 10 2013, 8:12

GreatEmerald wrote:No, it would work just fine. It's just that when you fly, you move two tiles in one turn.


That's not really flying. It's more akin to a speed hack.

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Postby GreatEmerald » Apr 10 2013, 19:13

hellegennes wrote:That's not really flying. It's more akin to a speed hack.


You would also be a level higher than others. Although with verticality, the scale could go both ways - have levels and move only in 2D space on one, or have the same small-scale tiles extend vertically as well.

Generally there could be a bit of a problem with determining when enemies get to move. If you have small scale tiles and allow moving only on the X and Y axes, then you can have movement base an integer of 1 - moving one tile makes everyone else move one tile as well (say, a step takes 1 second). That's pretty sweet and simple maths, but it's also limiting the player a bit more than usual.

If you allow moving diagonally, then you need to calculate the distance, which for one diagonal step would be sqrt(1^2 + 1^2) = sqrt(2), and that's not an integer in the slightest. So if you move diagonally, instead of that taking 1 second as usual, it would take 1.41 seconds. Which I guess could be solved by having turns still occur every second: you move diagonally (1.41s), enemies move, you move diagonally (2.83s), enemies move, you move diagonally (4.24s), enemies get to move twice. Though as you can see it's more complex than to just have everything confined to axes.

But that way you could also have seamless flight - have each step take half the time you normally need. So if you are trying to lift off and move diagonally at the same time, you'd move sqrt(sqrt(2)^2 + 1^2) = sqrt(3) (1.73s), but since you're flying, it takes half the time (0.87s). That way enemies don't even get to move on that turn.

If there is nothing interesting going on (you're not in a battle), you would just hold the forward button and have the party move seamlessly. In flight, the time between moving a single step while holding the movement key would be halved as well, so to you it would look just as if you're moving faster (and in the air).

In battles, if you don't want to move, you could press B (or Space or w/e) to skip 1 second without moving anywhere. And all of your abilities would have a recovery time as per usual, so if you swing at someone and it takes 3 seconds to recover, you can press the B button (or the attack button, if everyone is recovering) to advance time two times (as doing an action would spend the current turn), or move somewhere twice.

Man, that's quite an interesting idea I have here :creative:

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Postby hellegennes » Apr 10 2013, 20:25

Interesting, yes. And overly complicated. :D

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Postby Kalah » Apr 20 2013, 9:10

You can also read a more comprehensive interview with several of the VIP fans here on the main portal.
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