Author Topic: All Quiet on the Arcen Front  (Read 10288 times)

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2012, 02:39:56 PM »
Cheers!

Regarding the touch-range spells, I think you'll find them a lot more interesting in general (depending on your tastes; really, not everybody is expected to love all 50 mage classes or 200 spells, but everybody is expected to have a lot of variety that they can enjoy; and all spells should be valued by someone).  Part of it has to do with the overall mix of spells for a given mage class; also, the general physics changes and speed shifts to the game are really emphasizing close combat more.

The speed of the first game's movement was a lot more like Mario, sometimes bordering on Sonic, versus being like a Metroidvania title.  The movement is a lot closer to Super Metroid now (though not that slow), and thus an emphasis on closer-quarters combat in general is there.  You'll almost never be fighting monsters off the screen, for instance, because even your ranged spells won't reach that far.  But to compensate, the speed of all the enemies and enemy spells is also lower (as is your speed), so everything is more deliberate rather than more twitch-based.  Again, like most Castlevanias, Cave Story, Metroids, and so on; the speed is in the ballpark of all of them, now.

Regarding the spell tags, those are the spell groups that exist.  There are various spells in each class, each with its own unique theme, visuals, and stats; and, critically, assigned to different mage classes.  The reckless spells are indeed those that damage your character in order to do higher damage to the enemy.  Those are also happening to be ammo-based.  There are I believe 3 reckless spells out of 200 overall, so not many of those.

The unique spells are scattered around, and they mostly refer to the fact that they aren't following a larger group of spells; there are maybe 20-30ish spells out of the 200 that fit this mold.  I'm not sure exactly how many, I've not counted.  These are sprinkled through various mage classes, at all 5 tiers of spell quality.

The unique ultimates are the 10 "ultimate" spells for each of the tier 5 classes.  Not only do these not have any other counterparts, they are also very powerful.  In general there's a lot of new stuff at each tier that you won't have seen in the lower tiers (as well as more powerful versions of lower-tier stuff with different particles), but tier 5 has the highest density of new stuff all around.  Which makes sense, as it's the highest tier. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LaughingThesaurus

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,723
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2012, 03:35:21 PM »
Ahh, I see, so I'm more likely to get use out of touch spells as I would, say, knuckles or daggers in a Castlevania game, since it actually has that slower pace. That seems pretty reasonable.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2012, 03:37:03 PM »
Exactly.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LayZboy

  • Full Member Mark II
  • ***
  • Posts: 162
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2012, 05:31:48 PM »
Are we gonna be able to heal out in the field or will we have to Tediously travel back to town again?

Offline tigersfan

  • Arcen Games Contractor
  • Arcen Staff
  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,599
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2012, 05:51:37 PM »
Are we gonna be able to heal out in the field or will we have to Tediously travel back to town again?

As I understand it, there will be healing out in the field, and you will also be restored to full health when you are on the world map.

Offline madcow

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,151
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2012, 06:08:21 PM »
Really excited about the change in movement and new spells. Especially if the close combat spells have more varied hit patterns than the old touch spells.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2012, 06:37:00 PM »
Are we gonna be able to heal out in the field or will we have to Tediously travel back to town again?

As I understand it, there will be healing out in the field, and you will also be restored to full health when you are on the world map.

Healing out in the field consists of killing monsters, same as in AVWW1.  But yeah on the world map.  Given that players will be frequently visiting the world map in order just to move around the world (regions are smaller than they used to be in the first game), this is no hassle.  Also, I should point out that there are no towns/settlements in this game. :)

Really excited about the change in movement and new spells. Especially if the close combat spells have more varied hit patterns than the old touch spells.

There are a number of patterns for close-combat stuff, but most things are more mid-range or up.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LaughingThesaurus

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,723
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2012, 07:28:37 PM »
So how much smaller are the per-chunk areas looking? Obviously, as they are, they probably fit in the category of 'insanely large'. Is it more of a move from that to moderately large, or to rather small? That is to say, is it more like 60% of the original size, or closer to very small like 20-25%?
I still rather like having a decent amount of stuff to explore, though Valley's areas were always absolutely overwhelming in size.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2012, 07:38:34 PM »
Well, it depends on what you are talking about -- chunks or regions.  Let me give you a fuller picture:

- Smaller: The world map itself only has one continent, rather than many.  So no sailing on ships, no infinite exploration in one world.  You play, you win or lose, you play another world.
- Larger: The world map itself is vastly larger than one continent was in the old game, though.  You can actually set the world size as a setting, but on the default it's maybe the size of 8 or 10 continents in the old game, something like that.
- Feels-Larger: Movement is more restricted on the world map in the new game, making distances feel more significant compared to the first game.  Much more satisfying.

- Smaller: Previously, the surface of a region used to be made up of a lot of chunks (6-12+).  Now there is only one surface chunk per region, ever.
- Larger: Previously, most of those surface chunks were 128 tiles wide, a few of which were more like 256 tiles.  Now all of them are in the neighborhood of 512 tiles wide.
- Feels-Larger: Since you move slower than in the first game, it takes longer to traverse the same number of tiles anyhow.  Also, the density of interesting stuff (and combat) is a lot higher than in the first game.

- Smaller: There are far fewer caves and buildings than in the first game, in general.
- Mitigating: This makes the time you spend in them actually more interesting, and it makes it so that you spend more of your time outside, which is also good -- it gives more equal playtime to outside and inside, and less to undergrounds actually.

- Smaller: There are far fewer rooms in each building you go into.
- Larger: Each room is much larger than in the first game, which is great because that makes more interesting rooms and fewer transitions between them.
- Extra Bonus: There are no longer tons of empty rooms, or rooms you need to go randomly grinding through for stashes and so forth.  It's now much more goal directed.


And I think those are most of the points.  Generally speaking, what you are exploring in this game is the world map primarily, and to do that you explore various regions in a smaller capacity. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LaughingThesaurus

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,723
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #24 on: November 01, 2012, 10:17:05 PM »
I was speaking more of about regions. I just get lost in all the different terminology used, and I call regions chunks sometimes because they just seem... chunk-y. Like, a chunk of brownie cut from a grid.

So, overall... I'm getting a rough impression that...

World Map: Not infinite, but ten times larger than you are likely to go in Valley 1 per map... closer to AI War in a sense. Without movement that is quite as infinite (how does that work? Do you, say, only get a limited movement range from the region that you were just in after exploring it?), you choose your destinations more carefully.

Region: So let's say all chunks used to be 128 tiles wide. On average, we have four times the chunk size, but with only one chunk each... which means assuming a region always had 12 chunks, you would have roughly 1/3rd the size per region... still very respectable. If the regions are actually, say, twice as dense, then you end up with 8 chunks worth of stuff to do, which is pretty good stuff. I always did get tired of walking distances without finding anything useful or interesting.

Caves and Buildings: Thank God. I have Desert.ogg and desert2.ogg committed to memory thanks to how many buildings I had to explore... not to mention that when I first played, I spent a whole 8 hours or so exploring literally everything in one region. Not as if I didn't have fun doing it, but I spent so much time in buildings as well. And, you know what? I think it might have been a desert.

Rooms: So, if we say that there are 75% fewer rooms, but rooms on average are twice the size of larger rooms in Valley 1, then... I honestly have no idea. No matter what the case is, it sounds more interesting. Like I said, I can't say that I'd miss wandering randomly through buildings without anything to say for it.

...when I spend this much time thinking about a game, that means I'm secretly really anticipating it. You made it sound overall like everything will feel larger, because the things that you explore will actually mean something, which is definitely good news. You could have the biggest world ever, or even an infinite one, but if there's bloody nothing to find in it (Minecraft), then it doesn't really mean anything. Not as if Minecraft's got nothing, but I find that I have to mod it to get anything that really makes me want to explore.

What I'm wondering is if there are fewer buildings and caves on the surface, what are regions more 'dense' with? I figure monsters is a given, since you actually said so. I'm gettin' curious about the interesting stuff.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #25 on: November 02, 2012, 08:09:57 AM »
Your actual movement isn't directly limited, but you can't go into corrupt areas of the map without purifying them first. Purifying happens once per turn, so that limits how much you can move around since the overlord and his clones move around every turn as well.

In terms of "what is it dense with," it's dense with just interesting terrain and combat to get past. Think metroid. All this stuff is hand designed and then randomly assembled now. But also there are various goals like the things to destroy to purify a region, mercenary tokens, etc, etc.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LaughingThesaurus

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,723
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #26 on: November 02, 2012, 09:03:48 AM »
Oh! Oh! So, obstacles! It isn't just a case of 'well, the game randomly happened to make a really cool jump so do it' but a case of them being deliberate.
Interesting stuff implied there on corruption. I'll let that be a teaser, since after hanging out on these forums for a while, I think somebody would almost be able to actually convince you to reveal all of the game mechanics prematurely. I've been satisfied with what information we've gotten here, and it's been awesome basically having a little interview with a game developer.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #27 on: November 02, 2012, 09:10:46 AM »
Hahaha -- glad I can sate your curiosity some at least. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline LaughingThesaurus

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,723
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #28 on: November 02, 2012, 04:29:56 PM »
Oh I don't want you to sate it all the way though. Games are more fun when you don't. ;)

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,404
Re: All Quiet on the Arcen Front
« Reply #29 on: November 02, 2012, 04:32:56 PM »
Indeed.  And, believe it or not, I think that most of the questions are not even things you would think to ask yet. ;)  It's a really different game.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!