Update #47: Odds and Ends
Update by Josh Sawyer, Project Director
We've got a lot of things in progress on Project Eternity right now. As Darren wrote in the last update, we're winding down our first prototype. We just did an audit of the work that remains from the first prototype and where we will be going with the next prototype. Our first prototype allowed us to prove a lot of the basics of movement, character design, stealth, combat controls, inventory, resting, quests, scripted skill interactions, dialogue, status effects, and the ability and spell systems. There's still a lot of work to do on all of those elements, but by the end of the prototype, it really did have "that IE feel". How I organized and moved my characters, how I used them differently in combat, how I explored areas very much captured the feeling of the Infinity Engine games in gorgeous high-res environments.
So where do we go from here? First, we're going to try another approach to building interior environments to make sure we can capture as much of the organic feeling of the classic levels as we can. Second, we're going to continue to build up the dynamic elements of environment to make them feel more alive. We already have dynamic water, but we have more work to do on with elements like trees, grass, ambient visual effects, and our day/night cycle. We'll be showing you the results of those experiments in two weeks. Third, we're going to continue to develop more advanced gameplay features like fog of war, character voice sets, crafting, stores, AI patrols, and the melee engagement system.
In case you're wondering about the story, we've been working on both a lot lately as well. We really want Project Eternity to strike the right balance of elements: to introduce you to this new setting, to make you feel personally invested in your choices, to engage you with the personalities and factions involved in the conflict, and to give you all of the freedom you've come to expect from an Obsidian RPG. It's a long process, but we're feeling very positive and excited about where we're going, which is always a good thing.
Thanks for reading and, as always, thanks for your continued support. I'll be back in two weeks to show you our exterior environment running with all the bells and whistles in place!
Planescape: Torment Retrospective
Article by Darren Monahan, the Named One
Back before Obsidian was a company, many of us worked at Black Isle Studios, the RPG arm of Interplay Entertainment. One of the games a number of us helped create was Planescape: Torment, an Advanced Dungeons & Dragons based RPG set in the Planescape campaign setting.
As many of you already know, the guys at InXile recently launched the Torment: Tides of Numenera Kickstarter. They’re getting a lot of the “old band back together” to work on this thematic successor. One cool thing they’re generously offering to all Project Eternity backers (whether or not you back Torment) is a Planescape: Torment Retrospective featuring developer diaries and blogs from many of the original developers, including quite a few former and current Obsidian devs.
They’ve got nine days left, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, we encourage you to do so quickly! Please join me in thanking Brian, Kevin, and everyone at InXile!
Kickin' it Forward: Dwarven Forge's Game Tiles
Article by Darren Monahan, level 1 rogue/level 1 swashbuckler
So, several of us on the Project Eternity and South Park teams are playing a D&D 3.5E campaign at lunch a few days each week. While they’re short sessions, this is no small production - we’re using a bunch of miniatures and tilesets for the campaign, many of which our DM (and Eternity designer), Bobby Null, has acquired over the years from Dwarven Forge.
He came into work Monday incredibly geeked up because the folks at Dwarven Forge launched a new Kickstarter, which we got right into and backed. If you’re in to playing D&D and really want to get immersed, they make some incredible tilesets.
Here’s a few samples from our game! (Note, these aren’t the exact tiles they kickstarted, but rather just some cool examples of their prior work.)
Thanks, and we'll see you next week!