Could you clarify that a bit? Surely if players picked the spellcaster class they’d have that option?
Oh yes, for sure. Sorry for the confusion on that. At this point there are two spellcaster classes in the game and they will be able to cast their own spells. Certain staves or items which can be unlocked will provide new magic options to the user (i.e. the item has a unique benefit or negative trait, attack etc). Similar to unlocking other items for a more traditional class.
12 classes, over 8 races, an in depth melee system, as well as items that mix it all up. That’s a lot of content for a launch. Aren’t you tempted to scale it down to get the sword fighting and crossbows in and slowly build up?
It definitely is quite a bit. But being transparent, we’re already about 33% of the way through creating the character classes – just wrapping up the 4th class now and have been prototyping out the backend. As a multiplayer only title, that does alleviate a LOT of the work and time you would expect in a traditional FPS title.
That being said, should we hit walls with developing a class, balancing, or simply time – we may find that certain classes are shelved for the initial launch. But at this time, our pipeline is built around developing the title as-is and we will cross those bridges should we arrive at them.
Wow, you’re quite a bit further on than I realised.
Well, that’s from an art standpoint. We’re still just prototyping the gameplay and core of each class which thus far is more intensive. But keeping in mind it’s multiplayer, a lot of the storyline, NPCs, AI can get shelved as we just focus on our classes. It’s a title we think we can take to market fairly quickly and build out further in the future.
But there is a story to tell, correct? The Kickstarter pitch mentions a war between two sides, the Banner, of humans, elves and dwarves, versus the Swarm, of orcs, goblins and the like?
Yes, we’ve actually written out a pretty in-depth lore to the game which we will be releasing more details on in the near future. When the game launches, there will be content available within the game to learn and see more about the world lore leading to the battles the player is fighting in.
We’re also building out the post-launch release schedules around expanding that world lore. Each new update will provide new lore, new art, new stories and new locations to the game as the war between the Banner and the Swarm evolves. So updates won’t just be bug fixes and items. We have a lot of ways to grow the world lore as the game progresses on.
Can the community affect that? Say they have ideas about how the story progresses? Or want to throw a wrench in the works? Or to put it another way, can their input affect story just as much as gameplay?
For sure. We certainly have a world lore there and we know generally where we want the world to evolve to. But we will also be watching the game itself to insure that our updates don’t just tell a story, they help make the game better. If certain classes are being ignored, perhaps we evolve our story to create more opportunities for that specific class.
The community deciding what direction the story takes is possible, but more difficult as the ideas can be larger in scale. We view the story as open-ended. So incorporating in community ideas is totally possible. We assume each update will be focused on finding ways to make the game better and enhancing the story. If those stories and enhancements come from the community – we’re all about that.
But those stories need to help enhance the world and make the game better and progressive.
So how democratic are you willing to be? What will you do if there’s overwhelming community feedback that conflicts with your personal vision for the game? Either story or gameplay wise.
If we find ourselves in a situation where we a majority of the community is clamoring for a new feature, update, story etc. then we have a real obligation to listen to that, regardless of our own personal vision. We certainly can’t drop work we’ve done or plans we’ve made for any idea. But if a majority of our gamers are requesting something – this is who we’re making the game for anyways. We need to find a way to make it work.
Sometimes, that could be doing what they want at a later time (due to how far we are into the current update), dropping everything to accommodate or perhaps finding a happy middle-ground if we find we don’t have the resources to do exactly what is requested. You will find me using the word “open ended” a lot. That’s really the goal. We have to plan ahead, but at the same time, if you close yourself off to what the community wants, you’re not properly evolving your game.
Okay, so now the unavoidable question for any Kickstarter. What if you don’t reach your target?
Haha, definitely the unavoidable question. Our Kickstarter is not a last-ditch effort for us to save our game. Our goal with it is to truly help “kickstart” the game and be able to get the demo into the hands of gamers faster. If it fails, it doesn’t change our immediate goals or plans for the title. Simply means we may not get the demo out as fast as we would like to. We viewed Kickstarter as an opportunity to accelerate our current plans and generate some early feedback on what we’re trying to accomplish.
You can find out more about Nightrealm Tales by visiting the game’s official Kickstarter page.