A drip of blood; A drip of truth [MM7-Type Game][WIP]

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

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RyuMaster
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A drip of blood; A drip of truth [MM7-Type Game][WIP]

Postby RyuMaster » Apr 2 2014, 0:38

Hey, everyone! My dream is to become the greatest game designer in the world, I am Orvald Maxwell, and here is my first game in-progress :). Its heavily based on MM7, so if you liked the original, you might be interested in this one too. I'll be sharing my ideas and screenshots, and hope to get feedback, advices and curses.

So far, I have completely re-created MM7 engine using Unity3D , you may see some small test-gameplay footage in the video below:

http://youtu.be/y0vTdfkjTA4

And here are some screenshots from the game:

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Engine still needs some work and bugfixes, but generally I am very satisfied with the results, as it is very stable, flexible and uber fast. So, after I have this solid fundament, my pre-production stage is over, and its time to rock!

--- Is is going to be MM7 clone? ---

I'll be very conservative about MM7, keeping as much as possible from the original series, but all my efforts are going to be focused on what is really important for the game: level design and enemy AI.

Basically, I want to add limited amount of very important features, which will make original mm7 formula much more exciting and not so dated. Modern "hardcore" dungeon crawlers all are nothing but a huge step back, unfortunately.

I'd like to keep the most imporant part - MM7 core - but I don't think anyone can explain, what that 'core' really is. Its something that genius of 3DO team assembled, and this happens only once in a lifetime. All I know for sure is that 'mm7 core' has something to do with very smooth difficulty progression which complements fantasy exploration. This makes even more sense, when you memorize all MM7 data tables. So I'll keep it in mind all the time.

-- Platforms --
I'm developing game for PC with optional Oculus Rift support;


--- Quests --
Someone needs to stop this madness of fetch quests and grinding inside RPG genre, and I'll make few steps forward. I am introducing dynamic quest system: game will have several sub-stories advancing in time. The main idea is:

1. Every quest has indirect reward.
2. Every quest influences game world physically.
3. All quests are important for the storyline.

There is a lot more to this system, but I'll save explanations for later, once I have it partially working.


-- Castle Building --

That good old Harmondale! Your castle plays central role in the game now. During whole gameplay, you will gradually improve castle, its defences, place new weapons and fortifications, gather army and allies.

If you decide to learn more about game's lore from its wikipedia, castle will make even more sense to you. And to be totally honest: MM7 beats MM6 for me only because I had that Harmodnale, lol.

-- Story --

Game takes place in the Dream World, on the Ideal Country layer, and player takes role of a 4 holy deties - the Guides.

I have developed the story for more then 5 years. Never had any chance to use it in any game, so that is why it improved for so long, and became capable of carrying fantasy RPG solo mid.

Game will feature 4 different endings, one of those being 'true ending'. I am personally a huge fan of 'True Endings', likely, from the time I've played Valkyrie Profile:Lenneth; True Ending is for those whom can perceive well, understand what's really going on, invest time in correct and clever character development, and true ending is going to be very rewarding in terms of production value. That is how it should be in every RPG.

I have some kind of wikipedia, if you are interested in game's lore, but it is short on info at the moment: http://hcompgames.com/ryumaster/test/home.html

-- Soul Quants --
Yah, its kind of a new currency. Your mana points are recharged from its pool , and every save game uses SQ as well. If SQ reaches zero, its game over. So you will need to catch some twisted humans from time to time and imprison them, in order to draw SQ. Soul Qunants are essential not only for the story, but for the game mechanics too. They will serve fighting cheap hacks, fighting save game abusement, and will force to have good mana and spell management in overall.

-- Astral Prison --

In order to stay alive, you need to draw Soul Quants from the humans. So you capture them, keep them in the prison, and torture (mentally). When they are harmless, you can release them back from the Dream World (let them awake), or consume their soul.

I'm not sure yet, how will this torturing mini-game look like, I was thinking about system like Ar Tonelico, but then again I don't want to make something too distracting from the original experience.

-- True Bossfights --

Same will apply to all enemies, but on the bosses it will have the greatest impact ever: use strategy; Modern games goes cheap, to fight boss you either learn his attack pattern, or weak spots, adapt and kill. I will go the other way around: in order to win, you need to make boss play the way you want. As I mentioned, I am putting lots of efforts into AI, simplistic, but efficient enough to use the environment I'm preparing around the bosses. Learning attack patterns would not be enough to secure the victory anymore, to kill OP boss, you will actually need to make lots of preparations and gather the intel. Its easier to show then explain, hopefully I'll compile the 1st boss demo soon.

-- No small talks --
I'm tired of pointless blocks of text in RPGs. It was cool 15 years ago, but now I just can see through how some 5$/h folk writes this fantasy stuff without even caring. It sucks. Every piece of information and dialog in my game is going to be important, connected to some quests or events or hints, I am making all the text worth reading through, especially for those who seeks true ending. It cuts huge amount of text, but on the good side, its not the amount which makes it worth reading (unleast we are talking about Planescape: Torment where every glyph was a pleasure to absorb);

-- Monsters, Spells, Weapons --
Now then, the spells in MM7 are completely off. But not because spells are bad, they are superb, but because they are mostly useless 99% of time. Here I will re-make all the monsters, and build them around the spells and skills, in order to utilize every single spell and combat tactic possible. As I mentioned, the level design and monster design is the most crucial part in improving this game. And dozens of game designers will fail here, as this task is hard, but Orvald Maxwell knows how to handle it flawlessly :) I will never use monster in any other location that it is designed for.

On a side note: if you ever want to peek on the flawless execution of level design, go and play Dark Souls 1, and then play Dark Souls 2 to understand even more, how awesome DS1 really was.

Thank you for your reading through all this. While working on the game, its always important to have some communication for not to feel desperate, so feel free to drop any comment :)
Last edited by RyuMaster on May 12 2014, 10:57, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby the beavers1 » Apr 2 2014, 2:05

Im interested! Sounds Superb :D
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Postby phamlongtuan » Apr 2 2014, 7:04

For me these are the key of Might and Magic "core"

1. The feel of exploring, something not "visible", you only know what is it when you come close. So i expect the unexpected.

2. The "scatter" of quest, trainer, this is something that not "visible" again. You can not simply have a indicator like modern game over your head and tell you where to run.

3. The atmosphere, Might and Magic does not have to be medieval, medieval is simply not Might and Magic. It likes you live in different magic world, and they are so real.

You will need a very big board to draw the relationship between character and quest, otherwise you will lost, how about create a private group of disscusion so people can brainstorm?

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 2 2014, 9:58

1. The feel of exploring, something not "visible", you only know what is it when you come close. So i expect the unexpected.


Oh, I know that feeling! Death Mountain Summit from Zelda comes to mind, when you put it this way. In MM7, I felt the same way about Titan Stronghold, thought it was so easy to sneak in there, lol.

2. The "scatter" of quest, trainer, this is something that not "visible" again. You can not simply have a indicator like modern game over your head and tell you where to run.


That is true. There is something special about the system, when in order to level up the character class, you need to complete the hard quest. You even need to find right trainer for it inside the huge world. Somehow that makes so much sense. Indicators are no-go. I hate everyting about casualising in the modern games. If I'll ever need to put the indicators, those would be under the "toursit" mode.
3. The atmosphere, Might and Magic does not have to be medieval, medieval is simply not Might and Magic. It likes you live in different magic world, and they are so real.


The sci-fi premise in the end especially made MM7 for me so memorable in terms of the story. Though I don't think this is a 'core' feature, I think core is more about how gameplay did work out.


You will need a very big board to draw the relationship between character and quest, otherwise you will lost, how about create a private group of disscusion so people can brainstorm?


When I was working on the story, my idea was to make a premise which will simplify character amount in game by a lot. In the world game takes place, only those whom can fight can actually still live, and that makes possible for me to cut hug amount of useless NPC.

I do already have many graphs, I'm used to drawing them a lot, as I was prototyping many RPG's which did not make it out from pre-production, though.

The idea of brainstorm would be superb, but then I need to finish locations on the paper and wikipedia firstly. Every NPC/Enemy needs to be very logical, like, I loved the idea, when Gryphons live on the cliffs around the castle - makes so much sense. If people would not be aware of game lore and circumstances, it would be hard for them to brainstorm correct idea, I guess.

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Postby hellegennes » Apr 2 2014, 17:36

It looks really interesting. I hope you can make it a reality. I also hope you either make the inventory more spacious or reduce the bulkiness of items. It seems like armours take a lot of space.

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Postby Asomath » Apr 2 2014, 20:19

Thats a good solid base. I like it. What was your development time on that demo?

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Postby Bloax » Apr 3 2014, 6:13

I really want you to not have such an awkward name for your project.
"Blood Spells the Truth" Might do, and you'd avoid the weird semicolon pause.

It's pretty important to keep names fluid, as it would be no fun referring to this cool new game you've found - "A drip of blood, a drip of truth".
Even if it's not something difficult like Zandronum.

On another topic, the "Irradiated" portrait looks pretty awkward due to the outright silly grimace that is its expression.

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 3 2014, 18:34

hellegennes wrote:It looks really interesting. I hope you can make it a reality. I also hope you either make the inventory more spacious or reduce the bulkiness of items. It seems like armours take a lot of space.


I was thinking about that too, so I have made inventory scalable i.e. I can make it any size just by making sprites smaller. If space is going to be the problem, I'll reduce it.

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 3 2014, 18:36

Asomath wrote:Thats a good solid base. I like it. What was your development time on that demo?


Thanks, that is what I wanted to had - ready engine with all major features.
It took me 2 monthes, but as I had to freelace for some money to make my living, I'd say 1.5

Asomath wrote:I really want you to not have such an awkward name for your project.
"Blood Spells the Truth" Might do, and you'd avoid the weird semicolon pause.

It's pretty important to keep names fluid, as it would be no fun referring to this cool new game you've found - "A drip of blood, a drip of truth".
Even if it's not something difficult like Zandronum.

On another topic, the "Irradiated" portrait looks pretty awkward due to the outright silly grimace that is its expression.


Lol, thank you for the input. I'm not native english speaker, so I never though it is going to sound too awkward. If that is really is the case, I'll change it for sure.

As for Irradiated - well, that is how this poor guy looks like.

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Postby Coldy » Apr 5 2014, 10:43

That's pretty impressive. Good luck in your endeavour. :)

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Postby Flodarien » Apr 12 2014, 10:47

phamlongtuan wrote:3. The atmosphere, Might and Magic does not have to be medieval, medieval is simply not Might and Magic. It likes you live in different magic world, and they are so real.


I could easily see a MM Type game that would be Steampunkish. Swords, shields and armor would still work, as would bows, but there could be flintlock guns, that does more damage, but takes longer to reload. Mechanical contraptions would have to be the core of it.

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Postby Echo » Apr 12 2014, 11:57

Looks really intriguing, I'll most certainly keep tabs on it! Best of luck man, and I hope we get to see the finished thing. Are you working on it completely alone? And did this in just about 2 months? :o

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 12 2014, 21:06

Flodarien wrote:I could easily see a MM Type game that would be Steampunkish. Swords, shields and armor would still work, as would bows, but there could be flintlock guns, that does more damage, but takes longer to reload. Mechanical contraptions would have to be the core of it.


I really want to keep the game away from steampunk. The reason: sci-fi elements in MM7 were introduced at the very end of the game, and that is what made it special. Koudelka is going to be armed with steampunk rifle in my game, but she is ultimate enemy, so that is acceptable.
Last edited by RyuMaster on Apr 12 2014, 21:13, edited 4 times in total.

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 12 2014, 21:12

[quote="Echo"]Looks really intriguing, I'll most certainly keep tabs on it! Best of luck man, and I hope we get to see the finished thing. Are you working on it completely alone? And did this in just about 2 months? :o[/quote]

I did, well, for, the GUI I hired artist to draw base PSD file, as I can't draw, the rest I've made by myself. But, yet again, game assets like inventory are based on daz3D models. I scripted the system, which allows me with 1 mouse click render dozens of armors, weapons and artifacts from bought assets from their store. At this moment, my friend joined me to help part-time. Right now, we are working on complete game map. I'm following Dark Souls example, i.e., we are creating complete 3D game map in 3Ds max with many interconnections, I want to move from 2D into 3D level design, as Dark Souls did, as it was complete awesome and this really should be the standard now.

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Postby Echo » Apr 13 2014, 17:22

Oh, I see, that sounds a lot more reasonable, I was afraid you somehow made all the coding, level designing, plotting writing AND art alone in the span of 2 months and was starting to suspect that maybe aliens visited the Earth and left us some human robots here after all ;|

No, but in all seriousness, good job. Keep on rolling! B-)

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Postby RyuMaster » Apr 14 2014, 8:13

Echo wrote:Oh, I see, that sounds a lot more reasonable, I was afraid you somehow made all the coding, level designing, plotting writing AND art alone in the span of 2 months and was starting to suspect that maybe aliens visited the Earth and left us some human robots here after all ;|

No, but in all seriousness, good job. Keep on rolling! B-)


Thanks a lot! - it is possible to code this in 2 months only because of Unity, I'm following community for 3 years and so I knew all the shortucts I could take with already coded stuff/components.

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Postby Talin_Trollbane » Apr 19 2014, 18:46

i am interested.
Ultima, Elder Scrolls and Might and Magic Veteran.

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Postby RyuMaster » Oct 9 2014, 19:55

Well, I could not assemble good team - people are with lots of real-life problems, and tends to run away fast. In order to attract professional developers, I decided to get greenlights status. So, if you like the game idea, please vote for it on this page: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/f ... =324396773

The game actually has a lots of changes from original MM7 formula now, so you might firstly think over is that something you like to play. Its just that I decided, that without bringing something new, its impossible to resurrect old title. The time changes, and so formula needs to evolve.

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Postby GrayFace » Feb 20 2015, 10:42

Wow! This looks very exciting. How is the progress?
Some criticism:
1) The interface is cluttered and too big. It takes even more space on the screen than in MM7.
2) Too much bloom.
3) Permadeath + no saving? Seriously? It has to be a 30-minutes long game then. Especially with dynamic encounters! I would consider permadeath viable only if everything is totally predictable. Never played roguelikes, but perma-death from something unexpected would certainly lead to perma-uninstall (or I would rather backup save created on exit and cheat 'no saves' that way).
My patches: MM6 MM7 MM8. MMExtension. Tools. Also, I love Knytt Stories and Knytt Underground. I'm also known as sergroj.

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Postby waltc » Mar 19 2015, 0:51

On Steam your last comment seems to have been four months ago or so in December '14...if you want to generate some interest you'll have to get some different/improved content up there fairly soon...Good luck...I have a suspicion that you have discovered that "becoming the best game designer in the world" is maybe a tad more complex than you might have thought...;)
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