Tuesday, March 30, 2010

One little bit of roguelike, One hint of click-n-point, One tiny bit of trade and then time for some things completely different

I make heavy use of YouTube and would like to know if this is an issue. Are you unable to play back YT videos? Don't you like videos and prefer more screenshots and text? Comment at the post's bottom or email me! If you do have troubles with YT video viewing, perhaps TinyOgg might save you. :) [example]

Doryen Arena is a real-time arena roguelike-like.. You buy weapons, you select and use skills, you kill and then you die. The end. :)
Note: This video is sped up by approx. factor 3 for technical reasons and does not represent actual game speed. So-orry!

Pyromancer, by the same developer, looks more fun to me, but I have not had the chance to test it yet.

Both projects are visually rather impressive. Pretty lighting and fading and moving health numbers... Both use libtcod, which is a "fast, portable and uncomplicated API for roguelike developpers providing an advanced true color console, input, and lots of other utilities frequently used in roguelikes". Yet again by the same developer. If you find interest in such specialized libraries, librtxy, a retro vector games lib, might be interesting to you as well.

What you see above is an example of how scenery images are structured for the adventure "Beasts". According to the project's French-language wiki [EN translation] the project uses the proprietary American Girl Scouts engine.

I would be glad if someone offered to program the game using something more open, but it is great to have a good-looking adventure developed in a foss manner. The license is WTFPL.

Note: this video might spoil you the experience of exploring the game! Play it instead.

Spice Trade is a trade-travel-explore and live-a-life game with wonderful graphics and music. You take the role of a young Baghdad farmer and have a life to master. Agriculture and hard work, religion and cult, trade and travel: these are your means of progressing. Marriage, supernatural encounters, fame and money are to achieve but there is probably much more which I haven't noticed yet.

The game has a beautiful point-and-click adventure and management interface, multiple-choice dialog and map travel. Unfortunately, there are some interface issues. Often it is not clear how much you pay for a transaction. At the start you have to pay attention and not skip the first dialog (which cannot be re-shown in a game) to know what the starting options are.

Many actions, especially "work" and "sleep" are accompanied by an animation, that takes way too long. On the other hand these drawbacks enforce a calm game style and serve as punishment for boring game play. Explanation: It is most effective to work in the harbor, as you get very much silver/day, but the animation steals much real time. Farming on the other hand is hardly profitable, but the accompanying animation is very short. The conclusion is that both forms of gaining riches are boring and that instead the player should only use these forms of earning money to be able to engage in travel and trade. That is, only if you do not like the player character to have a slow and calm life of course.

There is also battle in the game (it plays a minor role) and battle is very quick, so the feel is 'right' - boring activities bore you, because you have to wait for animations to finish, dangerous action has no waiting time.

There is at least one dangerous bug in the game. I recommend you to save the game each time before you talk to the doctor. Under certain circumstances, choosing a specific dialog tree path will result in not being able to say anything or close the dialog. So save often. :)

I have trouble with the audio system of the game, my solution was to mute it and instead play the wonderful music using a media player.

Knights is a multiplayer (there is a singleplayer mode) 2D dungeon game, in which the players have to fulfill one of many possible quests. The default is: find three gems and leave the dungeon.

I have so far only tried the tutorial level and imagine it would be great fun to play against a human player. An AI enemy would be nice too. As far as I understand, there is no such thing as of now.

It has nice graphics, effective sounds, a impressive and simple but at first confusing user interface (press-hold direction keys to execute context-sensitive actions).

Also: the following command might save you some confusion: './knights -d knights_data/'. If you care about licenses, this thread reveals a little about the content's.

Qonk is a minimal invade-all-planets time-is-the-only-resource RTS. Last developer activity was nearly 1000 days ago but latest SVN is stable. Qonk is a beautiful time waster.

Cuby is a very pleasant-looking and -sounding puzzle game and it has nothing to do with lame rubik's cubes! Cuby uses the Raydium engine, which has a weird build system. This post will aid you in your quest of compiling it well, if compiling is required.

Dusted's Wizznic! was introduced at our forums. It is a nice small puzzle game, a clone of Puzznic for Gp2X Wiz, Linux and Win. Contributors should be able to add levels and themes easily.

If you like this game's visual or controls style, you have to check out Dusted's other games: SDL-Ball and OldSkoolGravityGame.

Ethanon is a quite amazing 2D (I repeat, 2D) game engine in development. No Linux version yet but porting will become a priority sooner or later. You can discuss the engine in this thread or on their google group.

Blockling is a puzzle game with cute pixel art gfx and retro sounds. "You are a young blockling who must stack blocks to reach the exit in successive levels!"