Author Topic: Updates from the Forge 29: September 2018  (Read 595 times)

Jubal

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Updates from the Forge 29: September 2018
« on: September 30, 2018, 07:24:05 PM »
Issue 29: September 2018

EDITORIAL

It's that time again! Here's your ninth Updates from the Forge issue of 2018, with a great range of stuff to look at as ever. The weather's getting colder, but the forges aren't, as you're about to see (if you read on and this editorial doesn't bore you to sleep, that is...)

There's not much news from around the site this month - as usual we're looking for more people to help with content editing and social media work, so please get in touch if you think you might be able to support us with that. Please do also share this newspost if you read and enjoy it - we need to build up a wider readership for Updates from the Forge in order to help support the great creators who we talk about within it.

This month we're looking at a nice range of projects - stories and strategies, pen-and-paper and PC games - from right across the site. Do take a look, check out people's forum threads, and give feedback! We've got one all-new site member to welcome, Jacob Kellogg whose Rodent Rangers Kickstarter has just started, and one other project new to Updates from the Forge, my own Caucasus-themed fantasy comic Mountain Leopards. Meanwhile we're also revisiting old friends at Epicinium, Windy Meadow, and more; read on and find out!

CONTENTS:

  • Epicinium: Closed Beta Begins
  • Be a Rodent Ranger - RPG Kickstarter underway!
  • More from the Exile Princes
  • Son of a Witch - a Rogue Released!
  • Mountain Leopards - An Adventuring Comic
  • Choose Iudicia's Story in Tales from Windy Meadow


Epicinium: Closed Beta Begins


To the trenches!

Epicinium, the environmentally driven strategy game made by cooperative game company A Bunch of Hacks, has moved from an open Beta to a closed Beta system as of version 0.29.0, requiring a beta key for access. Epicinium, besides being a multiplayer turn based strategy game where your riflemen, tanks and other units battle their way across the map, has a range of features simulating environmental degradation - whether via pollution, terrain destruction, or global warming - all of which can ultimately affect your points at the end of the game. There's a unique trade-off involved in Epicinium between conquering the world, and retaining a world that's worth conquering...

The playing community is largely based around the Epicinium discord channel, so do head over there if you want to find out more. The game now has Discord Rich Presence implemented so you can see the details of fellow players' games as they go! Other additions recently include a lot of improvements to UI and graphics, including new monochrome unit icons, neater text input fields for things like copypasting those new beta keys into the interface, and better pathfinding.




Be a Rodent Ranger - RPG Kickstarter underway!

This month we got to welcome new Exilian member Jacob S Kellogg, proprietor of new RPG company Purple Aether Games. He recently ran a successful Kickstarter for the narrative focused RPG Journey Away; his new project, tabletop RPG Rodent Rangers, has just started on Kickstarter itself, and it's looking excellent! A game particularly suitable for younger and family players, but which looks like it's likely to be enjoyable for all other ages too, the Kickstarter has already picked up 10% of its funding in the first few days.


In Rodent Rangers, players (suitable for ages 7 and up) will get to play as plucky mouse detectives, explorers, scientists and scholars who go out on missions through the big (very big compared to a mouse!) wide world when there's a rodent in trouble or a nefarious plot to foil. Focused heavily on problem solving rather than combat, and with a range of setting-specific skills for scampering across busy roads or even taking the wheel of human-sized vehicles, there's plenty for your small heroes to do in their very big adventures! Features like a 'friendship' die will also encourage teamwork in the system, meaning your team of mice (and, optionally, other small critters) will have plenty of opportunity for interaction within an adventuring party. Why not scamper over to Kickstarter and have a look?



More from the Exile Princes


The houses of the Exile lands

Our own Jubal is continuing to work on his game The Exile Princes, a strategic RPG project started to mark Exilian's tenth anniversary. Using medieval manuscript images and marginalia for its graphics, and with a hugely variable world generation system, there's a huge amount of detail to explore every time you start a new game in this whimsical setting. Selecting one of the houses shown above - the warlike Generals, heroic Phoenixes, wealthy Dragons, or inquisitive Scholars - gives you a different playstyle for different games, as you campaign to ultimately bring all the cities on the map under the control of your faction. Recent work has been on more in-depth opportunities within the cities, allowing you to explore ruins, visit blacksmiths, get sidequests, and more besides! You can find out more and ask questions about the game on the Exilian thread:



Son of a Witch - a Rogue Released!

Version 3.7.3 of Bigosaur's excellent Son of a Witch has been released. The main addition for this release is a new hero type, the Rogue. Starting with a backstab-capable knife, and with a devastatingly powerful ability to hide and then spring from the shadows to deal massive sneak attack damage, the Rogue can be great fun to play with and will be an awesome addition to multiplayer adventuring parties. He also comes with a magical keyring, allowing him to use mana to open doors throughout the game.


The houses of the Exile lands

That's not all though - numerous additional rooms have been added, including a duelling room and a dwarf with a furnace on the battlements level, a portrait gallery in the castle that lets you select a favoured enemy, and (pictured) the Vampire Slayer in the catacombs, who you must help fulfil her dream of becoming a famous vampire hunter! Of course there are some additional achievement for the achievement hunting types too, including VIP Customer - the difficult challenge of collecting ten of the silver shilling bonus items that you get for buying all the other items - yes, that's right, there's now something more you can get for not robbing and plundering your way right through the game...

You can find out more about all of this, and more besides, at the Bigosaur forum, where we also host a full three-part unofficial players' guide to the game and have a wide range of additional skins to download, including recent additions of an elf druid and some Gondorian soldiers!




Mountain Leopards - An Adventuring Comic

Returning to Jubal's work with a rather different project, we now head over to the comics and art section, where Jubal is busily writing Mountain Leopards, an adventuring comedy tale that follows cleric, scholar and storyteller Botso K'akhaisdze and his friends (or at least his acquaintances that he puts up with somehow) as they travel through the mountains of the fantasy realm of Datvieti. Here's Botso, Rusudan, and night watchman Varam heading out into the hills:


Brave, bold, adventuring heroes! Well, maybe not brave. Bold adventuring heroes! Well, maybe not bold... they're on an adventure, OK?

Taking its art inspiration from Rich Burlew's famous comic The Order of the Stick, and with a setting steeped in the myths, history, culture and legends of Georgia and the Caucasus region, there's a whole lot to delve into. In the eight strips released so far we meet our protagonist, a snarky narrative voice, a deity who wants you to think for yourself, an over-enthusiastic drinking master, and a duck in plate armour - and there's more just round the corner. Do head over, have a read and give some feedback: there'll hopefully be a good many more adventures to come for our adventurers...



Choose Iudicia's Story in Tales from Windy Meadow

Finally, we return to Windy Meadow, setting of Moral Anxiety Studios' pixel art illustrated choose-a-story game, for the latest art and character updates! One sequence released this month is the prologue section for Iudicia, whose difficulty interacting with the world leads her to a difficult separation from her family at a very young age:


Iudicia is one of three protagonists in Tales from Windy Meadow, which follows their hopes, dreams, anxieties and problems growing up in a larger than life fantasy setting where the world can be brutal, but where folk still go about their day to day lives with bravery or cowardice, joy or sadness, and hopes or fears that are very relatable to those of us in the real world outside. With regular video updates showing progress on story and animations alike, it's often worth checking out the Windy Meadow thread on the forum to see how things are shaping up.




So, September is passing by, and October saddles up to lead the year onwards into autumn. As the long evenings close in there'll be plenty of badgering and hammering away besides glowing furnaces (or, in most of our cases, glowing computer screens) well into the darker nights - and so many more Updates from the Forge to come in the coming months. Until then, as the leaves turn to oranges and browns, take care!
The duke, the wanderer, the philosopher, the mariner, the warrior, the strategist, the storyteller, the wizard, the wayfarer...

Jacob S Kellogg

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Re: Updates from the Forge 29: September 2018
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2018, 03:37:32 PM »
Great to see my Kickstarter on there! Woo!
Jacob S Kellogg
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Tusky

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Re: Updates from the Forge 29: September 2018
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2018, 11:36:24 AM »
Nice variety of projects on display this month!
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Jubal

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Re: Updates from the Forge 29: September 2018
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2018, 08:30:21 PM »
Thanks guys :)

Please do share this newsletter if you get a chance - getting a decent readership for these things is really tough for us, and it's a nice way of mutually advertising one another's projects!
The duke, the wanderer, the philosopher, the mariner, the warrior, the strategist, the storyteller, the wizard, the wayfarer...