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Author Topic: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam  (Read 35051 times)

Todestool

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Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« on: May 05, 2011, 05:56:00 pm »

While I normally ignore any game on Steam that promotes itself as casual, the fact that this one has the audacity to compare itself to both Lemmings and Dwarf Fortress drew my attention.  I downloaded the demo, but I only had enough time this evening to play through the tutorials and one unimpressive effort at the tower defense game mode.
First impressions: It isn't really a puzzle game, so the comparison to Lemmings falls short.  It seems like you could get a level of anarchy almost meriting Dwarf Fortress levels, but this is mostly because your ability to direct your dwarves is minimal, and the Dwarves themselves are considerably stupider than DF's own.  It felt like watching an ant farm where the ants don't care if they find food, enemies, or deadly magma.  Still, I haven't tried all the game modes yet.
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BigD145

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2011, 05:59:39 pm »

Lemmings? Dwarf Fortress?!  ???

Hahahahahaha.......

Oh boy. That is a terrible joke.
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Levi

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2011, 06:06:54 pm »

http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=78965.0

I'm enjoying it so far.  It gives me a lemmings vibe mostly due to the "OMG WHAT DID YOU JUST DO!?!" feeling.   :)
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Darvi

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Bluerobin

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2011, 06:31:05 pm »

http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=78965.0

Not to be mean Todestool, but... the topic that links to was barely on the second page when you made this one!
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The moment the lever was pulled, somebody's pet kitten stepped onto the bridge. I read somewhere that if a cat falls more than 11 stories, it instinctively flares its legs out to increase air resistance. This slows it down enough to stick the landing with relatively minor injuries. In Dwarf Fortress, apparently, cats don't do that.

Mechanoid

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2011, 03:33:31 am »

To be fair, that topic was started back in March.
Also, to be fair about this game, it's not really worth the money*, because the gameplay breaks down like this, as far as i can tell from watching (horribly played) game videos on youtube:
*
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

You have 2 types of units:
  • Military Dwarves - Skilled, relatively smart dwarves that are good at combat and who will only mine dirt when and where you tell them to.
  • Not-Military Dwarves - Dumb as shit ADHD retards who, for whatever reason, have a pickaxe and like to use it on everything they see.
The one thing both types have in common is that they have no sense of self-preservation. This is the "Lemmings" aspect of gameplay. Like Lemmings, you get to play baby-sitter to the short, ignorant fools to stop them from killing themselves by using the few tools you're given. Tools like TNT to create a hole**, destroyable built walls, reinforced natural walls, and yes, Military dwarves. Unlike Lemmings, the list of tools you're given is obviously far shorter then that of Lemmings.
**
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Enemies are basically of "Kill you" and "Kill you faster then the last kind" variety and seem to be far smarter then your dwarves are, because they move towards your HQ to destroy it. Only really killable by military dwarves.

Actual gameplay revolves around managing not the stupid non-military dwarves, but the arrows on the ground. This is the mistake i keep seeing in the youtube videos, where people try to micro every dwarf, when it's simply not possible to. You put an arrow on the ground, and the dwarf follows it as a command. That's all you have to do, it's basically a top-down lemmings; arrows are blocker lemmings, that force the other lemmings to move in another direction. (in side-scrolling the only direction is reverse, but in top-down the effect is "walk in the direction indicated")

Have the most effective arrow layout to keep your retarded, non-military dwarves from wandering off and causing trouble by keeping them in a large holding-pattern loop of arrows; where they spend most of their time doing nothing but walking. Meanwhile, keeping your military dwarves in their own respective holding loops or attached to gaurd rooms or whatever so you can keep your military response times low. Keeping a few micromanaged idiots digging only where you want them to dig, so when they inevitably fuck up and hit water or magma or enemies, you can respond appropriately without getting shafted too hard.

TL:DR
That's all you have to do in the game to win it, manage the lemmings' dwarves' movement. Pay 10 dollars for a rehash theme changed featureless cut down aerial view Lemmings.

You could do this shit in Game Maker 6.

Here is a youtube video of why you MUST keep your retarded dwarves "idle" in a holding loop instead of "idle" digging up huge areas of the map, because you literally lose control by lack of containment (of liquids)

[edit - spoiler tags work better then size tags, durrr]
« Last Edit: May 06, 2011, 03:35:33 am by Mechanoid »
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"Have all the steel you want!", says Toady, "It won't save your ass this time!"

Max White

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2011, 03:50:31 am »

So it's somebodies attempt at taking the phrase "Dumbed down for consoles" to the extreme by taking one of the smartest games for pc, and making it lemmings without the puzzles?

Mechanoid

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2011, 05:13:10 am »

So it's somebodies attempt at taking the phrase "Dumbed down for consoles" to the extreme by taking one of the smartest games for pc, and making it lemmings without the puzzles?
In a sense yes, because there is no 'safe exit' out of the map for any of your lemmings dwarves. The only reason to keep a dwarf alive is to either have a powerful military dwarf or three to handle threats, and to save time not having to march out his replacement -- except you inevitably march out his replacement anyways because they all die horrifically easilly.

Really, the only goal and puzzle is a high score. The over-arching puzzle is how you'll get that high score; except that puzzle doesn't exist because you can avoid all the difficult parts. Visualize a rubic's cube with under 5 randomizing moves made on it, or a sliding block puzzle that starts two slides away from a completion. The "strategy" to solve the high-score puzzle can literally consist entirely of micro-managing every non-military dwarf that spawns immediately out to a far-flung ore patch, while your more controllable military dwarves mine the nearby ones. Then you just prep every nearby cave for containment from the cash you get and order back the retard dwarves before they kill themselves by unleashing hell.

Retard dwarves are under your control, military dwarves are useful while not fighting, water/magma/enemies not obliterating you, etc. All the difficulties arn't really difficulties... But you could still fail to get a high score in time simply because the random map generator fucked up by not putting enough cash on the map, or enough close by to mathmatically keep yourself going (playing optimally, but still at a net loss) and such.
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"Have all the steel you want!", says Toady, "It won't save your ass this time!"

Briggsy16

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2011, 05:18:34 am »

It's not a DF copy or anything, it has dwarfs and magma. That's it.

I like it, it's a good casual game to jump on for 5 minutes or so and have a go.
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Max White

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2011, 05:27:00 am »

Well, it is a top down micromanagement game that gives you indirect control of a small population, and your primary objective is the survival of this population by handling problems such as food supplies, water levels, and invaders. It also has noticeably simplistic graphics, so much so that they are hard to read if you are not accustom to such games.

Now there are several games I could be describing here, DF being one of them. I'm sure that this game took other influences aswell! But the fact that this game adds another layer of similarities by making it a population of dwarves, and has what is almost a trademark of DF, magma, it makes me wonder maybe the developers were trying to ride on Toady's coat tails.

Briggsy16

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2011, 05:32:46 am »

In the five or so games I've played I've never handled food supplies?

I think it's clear to see that from the similarity of magma and dwarves there is barely any other DF-ness in this game. I'm sure it took inspiration from DF but to say it's a dumbed down copy is just.. well dumb.

This game doesn't own dwarves you know? Other games are allowed to use them.
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Max White

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2011, 05:50:49 am »

Well no, DF does not own dwarves and magma and indirect control of your units. Why I was enjoying all these features in Dungeon Keeper II before DF came into existence, but that was a very different game. In threw you into a personified role, something DF does not do, it gave you clear objectives, something DF doesn't come close to doing, and it had a very different visual style.

But I ask you, Briggsy16, look past the dwarves, and the magma, and see that those are not the only evidence of dwarfness. For example, why was this specific art style chosen? It is very simplistic and symbolic, just like dwarf fortress. Now they could have had any number of reasons for making their game in this way, but you must concede that trying to wish on the same star that bought DF it's fan base is a possibility.

Briggsy16

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2011, 06:04:08 am »

The simplistic art work because it's a simple game maybe? How is it symbolic?
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Max White

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2011, 06:11:41 am »

Do you see how we can understand how the very simple images relate to more complex concepts? That blue line of squares, approaching and retreating upon a wall of yellow, and retreating again? We can see that, and despite the fact that it does not resemble a beach at all, we can understand through symbolic colours and moment what is being portrayed.

Symbolism is ripe within games, and not just the type that your English teach drones on about.

Briggsy16

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Re: Dwarfs!? - New casual indie game on Steam
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2011, 06:21:48 am »

So you've answered the question with a riddle, excellent.

How is the artwork in this game symbolic? Answer it properly.
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