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Author Topic: Wizards and Warlords - Indie Turn-Based Fantasy 4X Strategy Game  (Read 6481 times)

Ludorum Rex

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Wizards and Warlords - Indie Turn-Based Fantasy 4X Strategy Game
« on: November 21, 2012, 05:16:23 pm »

Hi, I hope it is ok to post this here, otherwise I apologize in advance.

I am a guy working on a turn-based fantasy 4x game in my spare time - and I have been doing so for a few years. It doesn't really have a name yet, the working title is Warlords & Wizards, but I am bad at naming, and prefer to spend time working on making the game awesome, then I am sure a good name will come in time.

My background is as a programmer working in the games industry for a major development studio, and this is my little pet project I work on during my spare time. It is starting to reach a state where it is playable, so I am reaching out for people to help me test it, and give me feedback and ideas on the design and content.

The goal is to create a game with a scope, scale and depth beyond what has previously been done in this genre. My inspiration is drawn from games like Master of Magic, Master of Orion, Fall From Heaven, Dominion, Europa Universalis, and Dwarf Fortress. Sadly turn-based fantasy games with an epic scale are a rarity these days. Most games released are simplistic and/or focused on tactical combat. So I set out to create a game that I myself would love to play. The graphics are rather abominable as I am a programmer, and not an artist, and I prefer to spend time on coding, not drawing stuff that is just ugly anyway. Maybe I will try get some help for graphics in the future.

The feature set I am planning for the initial release:
* Turn-based 4x fantasy strategy game.
* Randomly generated worlds, with randomly generated races, cultures, pantheons and organizations.
* Different games modes. You can play as a warlord bent on conquest and empire building, a wizard with enigmatic goals or as a demigod trying to ascend to godhood.
* Research spells and rituals in wizard mode.
* As a warlord you research cultural and military advances, guiding the progress of your people so your armies grow mighty enough to conquer the world.
* As a demigod as you gain followers you can transform the world and its inhabitants.
* When playing as a wizard, you research spells and rituals of increasing power. Seek out ancient artifacts, forbidden tomes and forge pacts with otherplanar creatures.
* Defend against planar invasions, or take the fight to the alternate planes in search of arcane power, riches or military allies.
* Random events to spice up gameplay and help weave interesting stories.
* Hidden cults plot and scheme. Uncover their hidden agendas, fight their intrigues or even try to manipulate them into becoming your pawns.
* Hire mercenary sellswords, summon magical allies or raise regiments from your towns and castles. Enhance regiments with attachments and upgrades.
* Recruit mighty heroes and send them to explore dungeons, ancient ruins and forgotten temples - or place them in charge of your armies and conquer the realms.
* Ancient evils slumber. Beware waking them or taking too long to complete your goals. Defend your holdings against all consuming gigantic oozes, the mad ghoul king, eldritch horrors, or other ancient evils of great power.
* Customizable settings: size of the world, cultural and racial variety, planar invasions frequency, allowed modes (wizard, warlord, demigod), how dangerous the world is, and many other things.
* Synchronous and asynchronous multiplayer.

Currently it only runs on windows, but the plan is to have it run anywhere with Mono available.

Anyone interested in helping me test and assist me with input/ideas/opinions, head over to my blog at http://wizardsandwarlords.wordpress.com/. There is a download link for the latest version, and a link to forums and a mantis bugtracking database.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 04:26:08 pm by Ludorum Rex »
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Sirus

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Hello there!

Do you happen to have any screenshots or concept art of your project? Something to induce playtesters to volunteer.
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ScriptWolf

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Hey Rex and welcome to the forums.

Not to sound cynical but do you have screenshots or a website ? to be honest i would be interested in playing it but im not going to willingly put any software onto my machine without seeing something of it 

damn got ninjad :P
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pisskop

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ptw, to see how this develops.
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kilakan

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I'm in the same boat as everyone else, don't wanna go popping software onto my one and only harddrive without a bit of assurance it's not gonna tear me apart.
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Girlinhat

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TL;DR, but this sort of stuff is always fun to see.  "Making a game I'd like to play" is the best way to appeal to otherwise unattended fanbases.  After all, we're all on the forums because we like a game that Toady wants to make, and we weren't content with other, simplified games.  Although, as others have said, we need something more to go on :P

Imp

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Posting to watch as well.
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Ludorum Rex

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Thanks everyone for the feedback. Very glad that you took the time to express interest and/or thoughts.

Very valid points with the screenshots and being a bit wary of a guy wanting to send you an executable to run. It hadn't really occured to me that people might fear a trojan, malware or somesuch, but that makes sense.

I put up a blog with some screenshots. Will probably be useful for informing people about development progress, etc. I don't really want to spend time on a fullblown website but this was pretty quick to setup.

http://wizardsandwarlords.wordpress.com

Please be aware that it is still early in development and it is coder art, so it looks kinda ugly in most places. I wish I had more artistic sense so it could look better, but alas my artistic skills are limited to miniature painting. Whenever I try my hand at drawing or graphic design it ends up kind of bad and it takes me ages. Which is also why I haven't posted a screenshot of what battles look like at the moment in the game, as it is just blue and red dots moving around on a grid, with a combat log showing what happens.

I was a bit unsure whether it was too early to start getting people's input, but my thinking is that this will take me some months to get to a stage where a public beta makes sense, and if I spend a month making some system or design which turns out unfun and I need to rework it, that it is precious time lost. So the earlier I can identify stuff that sucks, the better. Some of that I can see myself, but my experience as a game developer working for a mainstream studio making AAA games is that designers usually aren't very good at spotting the flaws in their work. And also, there are tons of good ideas out there that I haven't thought of, and which might just fit perfectly into this game.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2012, 05:03:12 pm by Ludorum Rex »
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Korbac

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Looks very interesting! :D Is the multiplayer potentially hotseat? Does it allow for different gamestyles? Is there higher level of tech than 'semi-cultured'? Would it be possible to use the game to 'run' a really cheesy story of a demigod, a warlord, and a wizard who are best bro's who work together?

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Alkhemia

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look's pretty good ptw
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Korbac

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What gameplay features are in as of current, Rex? :)
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IronyOwl

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I lol'd at "even the turtle men are evil."

Really, poor halflings. Poor, delicious halflings.
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Ludorum Rex

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Looks very interesting! :D Is the multiplayer potentially hotseat? Does it allow for different gamestyles? Is there higher level of tech than 'semi-cultured'? Would it be possible to use the game to 'run' a really cheesy story of a demigod, a warlord, and a wizard who are best bro's who work together?

I hadn't really considered hotseat, but it shouldnt be a great hassle to implement. The game works on a system of giving orders->resolve turn, so hotseat is definitely possible. Really just a variation on asynchronous/pbem. Yeah the tech levels are: savage->primitive->barbarian->semi-cultured->cultured->highly cultured. Yeah if people want to play together to do that, that would be cool. That is really what I look forward to the most. Crazy stories/AARs. The different modes are meant as a way to support different gamestyles - and some people might to roleplay and not just beat whatever pitiful/merciless AI I can make, or their friends. I don't really think there is any correct way to play a 4X game. Victory conditions are also implemented to be potentially flexible and differ per player. So it could be possible to have one guy win by just getting really rich, one guy wants to annihilate all halflings, and another player maybe needs to conquer the Plane of Life and build a permanent gateway to the normal world, or whatever craziness.

What gameplay features are in as of current, Rex? :)

Eh, that is complicated to explain. You can start up a game as a wizard or warlord. Warlords can recruit regiments. Wizards can build upgrades to their wizard tower. The basics of the magic system / research are in but not accesible yet. Battle simulation is implemented, but crude. Heroes can conduct diplomatic missions or extort tribute from neutrals - they can also explore dungeons, which are currently all populated by skeleton warriors. Ancient evils are created and seeded, and can be accidentally awakened, after which they don't really do anything yet. AI players try to build huge armies and don't really do anything with them yet. A pantheon of gods is generated, but currently is always a pantheon of usually rather silly animal gods - it is not visible to the player yet. Secret societies are generated, but they don't do anything yet, just their nature and goals are generated. And a lot of boilerplate code for various systems. Still a lot of work to be done, but the foundations are there for the core gameplay.
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lordcooper

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This is relevant to my interests, I'll drop you an email.  Out of curiosity, why did you come to this specific forum for testers?
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