Feb 15, 2008

ten gnomish questions / Age of Decadence

Age of Decadence, as I've already mentioned, will soon probably turn out to be one of the best RPGs a modern gentleman and his lady can enjoy, while also being the first truly ambitious CRPG the indie scene has ever attempted. Now, before heading off to its official website to find out more, have a read at what the developers have to say for themselves and -more importantly- their forthcoming game.
Age of Decadence1. Well fearless developers, care to introduce yourselves?

Nick handles programming, Oscar does the visuals, Rami models stuff, Ivan animates it, and I [Vince] am responsible for the overall design and writing.

2. Now, how about introducing us to your forthcoming release: Age of Decadence?

It's an RPG featuring:
- an original, low magic post-apocalyptic setting
- a detailed skill-based system
- turn-based combat with action points and different attacks
- a lot of dialogue with stat, skill, and reputation checks
- meaningful choices & consequences
- multiple paths & multiple endings

3. Any idea when we should expect to play it? Will it be a download-only title?

Sometime this year. We'll offer both download-only digital copies and professionally done boxed copies with a full color manual, a map, and a jewel-case CD. We've received quite a few publishing offers, but it's too early to tell.

4. And the name, the name... What is the significance of the Age of Decadence title?

It describes the setting. Highly anticipated sequels "The Age of Renaissance" and "The Age of Nationalism" are already in pre-production. Buy two, get the third one for free.

5. Care to elaborate a bit on the setting and story bits of the game?

The setting is post-apocalyptic fantasy. Several hundred years ago a war between two kingdoms almost destroyed them both. Magic, not unlike nuclear power, was used and supernatural allies were summoned. What's left wasn't in any shape to be called empires or kingdoms, so the age of town-states and decadence had begun. A lot of knowledge has been lost; magic was blamed for the devastation, and was all but banned; facilities that were seemed too dangerous were sealed.

The story begins when your character acquires an ancient map and revolves around learning where and what the map leads to, dealing with factions that have very different goals, and finally dealing with what awaits for you at the end of your journey.

6. I understand this will be more or less a turn based experience. How exactly will AoD play?

Turn-based. As for how:
- your Dex defines the amount of action point you get per turn and ranges from 6 to 12.
- all actions have AP costs, so for example swinging a short sword costs 4AP, while bringing a two-handed sword on someone's head will cost you 6AP. So, if you have 12AP per turn, you can either attack twice with a two-hander, or 3 times with a short sword, or 4 times with a dagger.
- AoD offers a large variety of attacks: fast, regular, power, special, and aimed. Fast attacks deliver less damage, but cost 1AP less and come with a to-hit bonus which works well against fast, hard to hit opponents. Power attacks pack quite a punch, but they cost 1AP more and are easier to avoid. Aimed attacks target specific body parts, etc.

So, going with the above mentioned example, armed with a short sword and 12AP per turn, you can do 3 regular attacks, or 4 fast attacks, or 2 power attacks, in which case you'll still have 2AP left. If you grab a dagger in your free hand, you can perform a fast attack with a dagger. We also offer throwing nets, acid, and black powder bombs to enhance your combat experience.

7. Will there be dialog? Puzzles? Moral Choices? Naked goblins?

We've spent all our money on dialogues and choices, so we had to skip puzzles and goblins completely. Even though they look kinda hot naked.

Overall, dialogues and choices are the main aspect of the game and the main attraction. We have seven different endings and only two involve mortal combat. You'll be able to talk your way in and out of trouble, make allies and enemies (there are no default good and bad guys), and handle quests in non-combat ways using dialogues and text adventure elements.

8. Any information on the engine you'll be using you'd care to share?

We are using Torque Game Engine, which was at the forefront of the WW2 technology. It's a real pleasure to work with advanced technology and craft living & breathing photorealistic worlds.

9. How about the available quests?

Well, they are much more better than the unavailable quests, I'll tell you that much. We have over 100 quests (104 to be specific, but that could change), but your choices will filter it down to about 60 quests per playthrough. I'm glad to report that we have 0 FedEx quests and 0 "kill x monsters/Bring me x items" quests.

10. What kind of character creation and game mechanics systems will you be using? Should we expect something like D&D or something more akin to Fallout/GURPS?

The system is skill-based. Your stats define your starting skills and then you gain and distribute skill points. We're slowly playing a "Let's play AoD" game on our forums, so drop by and take a look at the character system, dialogues, and some mechanics.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: It's Alive: the interview, Savage 2 - A Tortured Soul, Ron Gilbert's DeathSpank, Prototype 2

13 comments:

  1. Wouldn't the sequel be the Age of Repentance? :)

    Excellent interview and excellent game that I'm looking forward to. This is the kind of gameplay that I like in an RPG--not all about combat, low magic, emphasis on story, multiple endings.

    The AoD has will have spent at least 4 years by the time the game releases. I'm curious how much of that time was consumed by learning Torque itself.

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  2. Hi gnome :) It would be great if we could post this on GarageGames forums and get some follow up on the experience of developing an RPG with Torque. I think our community would be interested. Would it be okay with you if we reposted this interview (with credit of course)?

    Brett Seyler
    GarageGames

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  3. Actually, I was hoping for a bit more decadence, then some debauchery and only then for repentance, but I can definitely see the wisdom of your thought dear guttertalk.

    Oh, and glad you enjoyed the interview. Admittedly, I'm pretty hyped about the game myself too.

    Definitely Brett. BTW, that's a very intriguing product you got there... Gotta have look some time soon...

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  4. Thanks for the interview, gnome. I hope that there's eventually going to be an Age of Aquarius. ;)

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  5. Probably should happen sometime before the Horus Heresy. :)

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  6. Thanks for the interest, guys.

    "I'm curious how much of that time was consumed by learning Torque itself."

    3-4 months.

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  7. Thanks for being so informative Vince!

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  8. Wow, gnome, you're taking blogging to new levels with these interviews! I dare say you're quickly becoming the Racketboy of the indie scene. :)

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  9. Wish I were dear Nebacha, wish I were... Still, thanks a ton for the kind words!

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  10. Gnome, please know that I really am enjoying the interviews and would prefer if you would continue them in the future.

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  11. Thanks ross. I'll definitely try to.

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  12. Loving the interviews Gnome, and I echo nebachadnezzar's sentiments.

    You are indeed the racketboy of the indie scene and far more besides! ;)

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  13. And wait till you see me in my swimming attire...

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