Weekly news, post alpha edition

November 11, 2011|

Phew, another busy week behind us! Oh, and a big thank you for all the support and well wishes you have sent to us regarding reaching the alpha! It really means a lot to us in these times of intense crunch! πŸ™‚

The alpha playthrough resulted in a hefty todo-list (or perhaps more accurately, a todo-pile) and we decided to do the biggest changes first so that they would have plenty of time to settle so that they can be iterated as much as possible and so that we have more opportunities to encounter any possible bugs with them before reaching beta. Here’s a selection of the things we’ve been working on:

  • Player movement has been adjusted: the screen now bobs when you move. Also if you carry too much stuff, the movement slows down.
  • We added potions and a system for mixing your own drinks from herbs found in the dungeon.
  • We added sacks and crates for all you pack rats out there!
  • There’s one entirely new monster in the game and a ranged weapon variant of one of our older monsters (I suppose the word “old” works here on more than one level! (And the word “level” works here on more than one level!)).
  • A new spell has been implemented.
  • Plenty of small balancing touches: monster stats, item attributes and level design were improved in many places.
  • The end cinematic graphics are in progress. Juho will probably finish them during next week.
  • More items! In the beginning I never thought that it would be a problem during this project but the atlas texture that contains the graphics for the item icons is starting to be pretty full! I think we’ll add support for multiple textures here once we hit the limit, it’s something that we would have had to do sometime in the future anyway. The texture has space for 157 item icons and there’s only 13 slots left!
  • We’ve been playing the game here for the whole day today! Miscellaneous bugs and balancing issues were ruthlessly eradicated in the process.
  • Juho did an interview with Games On Net. Read it up, it’s interesting stuff!

100 responses to “Weekly news, post alpha edition”

  1. Jack Dandy says:

    Great stuff, and a very interesting interview.
    Good to know you’re doing your best to polish the game to perfection. Keep at it!

  2. GyokZoli says:

    Sounds good!

    I can’t wait to play the game!

    Guys, is it possible you add Steamworks support to the game at one point? I’m a sucker of Steam achievements. But even if you won’t add Steam support, I will be an instabuy for me!

    • petri says:

      We like achievements too so there’s a pretty good chance that some sort of achievement system is implemented but no promises yet!

      • SunSailor says:

        I sent you an email about our new online distribution platform for indie-games. It features a *very* powerful achievement system, which can represent every achievement possible in world of warcraft. Though very powerful, the handling is implemented very, very easy. You have server side values, which can have arbitrary conditions to trigger an achievement. This allows to implement simple boolean achievements as well as very complex ones, with achievements even depending hierarchical on other achievements (meta-achievements). Please drop me a note, if you are interested in more information (E.g. the SDK) to evaluate our solution πŸ™‚

    • Hmm says:

      I hope there’ll be a Steamless version, Steam is EVIL! Lots of people recently got their personal info stolen and all they got was “we’re sorry”. They should sue Valve.

      • Salem says:

        You lie there were no passwords lost the encryption made it so that the hackers only got like a tenth of a persons pass and it’s your own fault if your pass is like 2 letters/numbers. Ps steam has the best sales for video games. Sorry about the rant just couldn’t let steam get a bad name.

        • Joel says:

          I completely disagree with you, ANY private information lost, encrypted, complete or incomplete, is a severe failure on their part and yet we’re supposed to go on as if nothing happened? Furthermore continuing MY rant, being forced to constantly use their advertising / potentially information stealing launcher to use any product and then having the nerve to fully disable accounts based on their own whims – it’s quite pathetic that people actually still put up with it. I’m sorry but I couldn’t let you allow you to live on in ignorant bliss of steams controlling regime. [/unnecessary rant]

          Back to the topic, the game is sounding most interesting and well designed and I hope that the final product is available to people regardless of their affinity to steam or lack thereof.

          • Peter says:

            Very well said.

          • R says:

            Just so we’re clear – the only company in recent history to not only come clean about a breach upon discovery, with very little initial quibble, is evil because they properly protected your data on the back end?

            Here’s a tip for you, from someone who does this professionally – every single system is vulnerable, not matter how hard you try. Layered defense, in concert with a vigilant admin staff, is the only option these days.

            As for the “potentially information stealing” launcher…yeah, they take exactly what their agreement tells you it does.

            Do you have a Facebook account? They’re who you should be worried about – they not only refuse to disclose breach data, but also what information they actually collect on each of your visits. They’ve been publicly outed as tracking your online web habits, regardless of login status (or even if you have an account with them).

            Don’t smack the few companies that are actually trying to do it right – focus your wrath on those more deserving.

      • Donald says:

        I love that Steam gets broken into and THEY are the evil ones in your mind.

        Steam gets robbed and they owe you what? A cookie? At least they told us about the break-in quickly, unlike say Sony.

        • Hmm says:

          Are you for real?! Valve had the guts to create intrusive DRM which forces you to run a third party storefront client at all times even when you buy a game in a box, yet you expect me to praise them for not securing the data they forced you to divulge? What, should I give them a cookie and pretend nothing has happened? It was their responisibility to protect the personal info of their customers and they failed – they should be punished and sued to hell, just like any normal company would!
          Double standards much? If it wasn’t Valve, but EA/your bank/Microsoft etc., you wouldn’t be so apologetic, I am sure of it.

  3. IxianD says:

    Thanks for all your hard work, looking forward to crawling through your dungeons. Keep it up.

  4. wolfan says:

    Ooh an alchemy system sounds like a good addition. How deep do you imagine it going? Will it be more simple, or will it be involved and have secret items like Diablo II or Oblivion?

    • petri says:

      I don’t think it’s realistic to assume that we can crank up as much content as the huge teams of those games but you can count on there being a secret or two (yea, we like them secrets!).

  5. Awesome! It’s really great to see that you’re putting so much careful effort in it and don’t just rush it out for the sake of… well… having it out.

    As soon as you’ve set up something where we can pre-order it, please post it on Facebook. This game is exactly what I’ve been waiting for since playing “Eye Of The Beholder II”, “Anvil Of Dawn”, “Stonekeep” and the likes (which was a loooooong time ago). πŸ˜‰

  6. Sefotron says:

    Awesome news. Can’t wait to play πŸ™‚

  7. Beerdy says:

    Ho ho! What a news! What a progress! Impatience is starting to be truly itchy since now! :)) But what we all really do appreaciate is your hard work with significant results. You canΒ΄t imagine how refreshing is to see regular progress info here. Thanks for all that mates. Light at the end of the tunnel is shinig pretty brightly!!!

  8. RAF says:

    Congratulations guys go on like this all seems to be perfect !!!

  9. Mr. Fusion says:

    Progress goes great. πŸ™‚
    After finishing the game once, can the player start again on higher level and keep its stats/skills/ items?

    • petri says:

      The enemies do not level up automatically with the player so I’m afraid the game would be way too easy (single shotting snails and skellies)… but there should be plenty of replay possibilities with different party builds and finding secrets. We are also contemplating about adding achievements to the game.

      • Underking says:

        I think it would be nice if a New Game+ mode was added after the game release, bringing stronger monsters and items from the start, with an extra level after the normal ending sequence with extremely hard combat and puzzles.

      • Mr. Fusion says:

        I hope it is not that hard to code a system, where Monsters getting stronger in relation to the Player Level or something like that. πŸ™‚
        Or just add 3 “fix” difficult levels where you can use one and the same character like in Diablo, one big reason why I can play this game over and over and over… ^^

        The Idea about Achivements and finding secrets is also pretty nice, of course.

  10. ektor says:

    great news, and again thanks to make revive dungeon master spirit

  11. Sven says:

    Sounds good, looks good.
    i loved DM, CSB and EOB. It is nice to see, that someone finally again develop a oldschool dungeon crawler.

    one question. after i finished Dungeon Master and Chaos Strikes Back with a four hero party, i played it again with only one hero. So can i play Grimrock with only one character?

  12. LucidPanic says:

    Yay !
    Now take all of my moneys! πŸ™‚

    Before you do that, though, i got a question.
    – Player movement – Love the idea for showing the encumberance through speed, very intuitive. On the other hand : will be the bobing an optional choice ? I belive some people can’t stomach this.
    – Alchemy /Herbalysm – Do you handle it like, say Witcher games ? So that on easy and moderate difficulty it’s optional, but on harder levels it something that is required ?
    – Bags of holding ? That could be naturally overkill, so maybe some specialized for ammunition, thrown weapons ?
    – Yeah, you totally need a monster that randomly teleports the party when they are spotted. A white gazebo ?
    – A community chosen item ? I nominate ring of invisibilty (makes everything hold in the hand invisible). πŸ˜‰

    • petri says:

      I would really like to add a ring of invisibility somewhere in the game, you know, like an invisible ring on the floor somewhere in the dungeon! Hehheh, that would be the ultimate secret to find πŸ™‚ *evil grin*

      Alchemy: it’s optional in a way that you don’t need to mix potions but it’s just much harder without them πŸ˜‰

      Bags of holding: missile weapons stack so you can carry as much as you like unless of course you exceed your max load.

      Community chosen item sounds like a very cool idea. We’ll think about it!

      • Isaac says:

        An invisible mesh, with collision that randomly bumps here or there as your party passes by (kicks it) ~With only 5.1 3d sound and a slight DX9 distortion shader to hint where it went. *evil grin*

        About single PCs’… How does Grimrock handle 3 dead PCs’ ? (similar to EOB1?)

        • Joel says:

          Haha that sounds similar to finding the sewer controls in Stonekeep. The only indication you found them was Drake yelling ‘OW, my foot!’ (and then sweeping the mouse over the entire screen until you got the pickup hand). Would be very cool. Also, a locked chest that doesn’t have a key that will cause players to spend hours and hours trying to open through various means. *evil grin*

  13. Tim Stoop says:

    Stop writing blog posts and get to work! We wanna play!

  14. Ivos says:

    Hi, will there be any bonus for completed achievement? Like +5% mana for uncovering all possible spells…

    And, this is a little too early to ask, but.. after you release LoG and get rich :), do you plan to take a look at Wizardry remake?

  15. Sol_HSA says:

    About the screen bob: make it optional.

    The screen bob in early FPS games was a big contributor to motion sickness.

    • fredramsey says:

      Yes, PLEASE make the bobbing optional. I can’t deal with that.

    • antti says:

      Yeah, we’ve talked of adding it as an option.

      • Hmm says:

        I can totally see myself playing with “head bobbing” enabled, but I understand there are some people who get motion sick with such a feature turned on – so yes, please make it optional for these folks.

        • Jack Dandy says:

          I don’t have motion sickness, and would appreciate the head bobbing.

          Of course, making it optional would be the best way to handle it.

      • taran says:

        One more to add to the motion sickness camp. So THANK YOU if the head bobbing is OPTIONAL.

        • Robert C says:

          And another for the optional (or no) head bobbing. It has spoiled several games for me in the past. That aside, looking forward to the game πŸ˜€

  16. Phlimm says:

    CAN. NOT. WAIT!!!!


  17. Neil79 says:

    SO looking forward to this, up most respect for the developers πŸ™‚

  18. andrzej raczynski says:

    good job with the progress. curious as to the implementation of some atmospheric audio/effects in this game? Seems like being in an enclosed environment throughout all/most of the game would allow you to make use of a lot of audio stuff to create a rich atmosphere. I’m talking about walking along some corridor and hearing ‘noises’ from off in the distance, or maybe even right on the other side of the wall.

    Chains being dragged, thrown, screams, cries for help, general horror stuff, (dont’ mean it to be a horror movie/slasher film though), walls crumbling/landslides/caveins off in the distance. maybe even something as strange as some big drilling equipment seeming to be coming ‘at you’ through the wall, you stop in your tracks as it gets louder and louder to ready your footing for defense….and at the peak of the noise, it just stops/gears down and you breathe a sign of relief.

    neat little things like that, where you get drawn into the game and find yourself wincing/pausing/worrying/ in real life πŸ™‚

  19. Mole says:

    Do you see what they are doing? Almost human are big teasers and love making us suffer. I don’t think I can stand the pain any longer. If I don’t get this game soon I am going to do something totally reckless and silly. πŸ˜€

  20. andrzej raczynski says:

    love the video in that interview πŸ™‚

    another thought, after picking up something from the ground, instead of dragging it over to the person’s portrait, how about having the option to also just hit 1,2,3 or 4 on the keyboard and have it go to that character’s inventory automatically. that way if you want to then see the item in the inventory you can also quickly hit that same number again and it would open that character’s inventory right up.

    click&hold on item on floor, then two quick presses of the the number 2 key, and the item gets put in that person’s inventory and the inventory opens up for you to do whatever. otherwise just one press of the number 2 and you carry on without the inventory inspection.

  21. pzkrakz says:

    Any chance that this will (eventually) include random level generators (i.e. a 3D rogue-like…)?

    • defsdoor says:

      Random levels suck. The entire joy of dungeon exploring is discovering someone else’s creation. Make it random and it’s just a trudge. It’s not about getting through a number of levels as quickly as you can – it’s about exploration and discovery.

  22. matthew says:

    another nice blog update, love the progress been made to the game, keep it up, as Im getting more and more eager to play it, and will drop everything when it comes out, (apart from grimdawn alpha if this does get delayed until next year) but if both games were released, I would have a hard choice knowing which to play first

    but anyway, congrats on a job well done so far, keep it up, and keep these updates coming

  23. Mole says:

    I also dislike head bobbing. It’s just not natural unless you have one leg shorter than the other, so I am hoping I can switch this off. πŸ™‚

    When it comes around to selling LOG, I hope you guys don’t use Paypal. Paypal seem to be a indie developers worst nightmare at the moment.

  24. ErikBauer says:

    Great bunch of news and great interview!
    Every single one of the new features is very very wellcome!
    This game is confirming to be the Dungeon Master lover’s sweet dream coming true!

    And yes… you should definitely make a new vid πŸ˜‰

  25. Emmanuel says:

    One word can summarize this game…. EPICNESS!
    I mean 143 ITEMS and it’s just alpha! >_>
    definitely one of the best indie games that are still in productions.
    Can’t wait to support it.
    Excellent Job with the game Guys!

  26. Valaki says:

    Well I know this is not a Skyrim scaled project, but you guys are working really hard. Again, all I can say, keep up the good work!

  27. Siekuren says:

    Thanks for the update, I assume there are going to be locked chests and such. Do you have an interactive lockpick system for this? akin too oblivion etc or will it be like morrowind?(luck based) Keep up the great work I’m looking forward to this game!

  28. John says:

    Please make head bob optional – head bob makes me motion sick.

  29. Cityshark says:

    Wooohoooo !!!! You guys really know how to make a friend of Oldschool Games happy! Can’t wait to play it πŸ™‚

  30. A says:

    Can you tell anything about your pricing plans?

    • juho says:

      All I can say at this point that it’s not yet decided, but it’s not going to be full priced.

      • RAF says:

        Juho team and I hope you do not put a regeneration system of life and mana like other games, such as when the fight is finished that life and the magic of every single player to regenerate

  31. Satan Fang says:

    Hope you don’t have to nix anything! Hate it when they do that, is there going to be multiplayer? If so, will it also be possible to have an editor to make my own maps for MP?

  32. Grilox says:

    I’m really looking forward to this, especially because of your team constantly talking about how much you guys love secrets. Secret hunting is probably my favorite gameplay style and modern games are severely lacking in that department.

    • Jack Dandy says:

      Hear hear!

    • Hmm says:

      It kind of worries me the dungeons are supposed to be rather linear (which is understandable, it’s our dev team’s first game), that might hurt secret hunting a bit.

      • Jack Dandy says:

        When they said linear, I think they meant that the “General direction” you need to go is down. ie there will be no backtracking required, but the levels will still have many secrets. At least, that’s what I think.

        • Jim says:

          There was some great – though minimal – back-tracking employed in Dungeon Master. So I suspect we’ll get a little bit here. Or at least, I hope so. πŸ™‚

  33. Jacobski says:

    i’m not sure if this was just a placeholder but in full release i think it would be nice if the movement were to be less 90 degrees and more organic

  34. Theo says:

    Nice image of the prisoners walking, but why does Grimrock look like a ruin? Not enough money to keep it in top order?

  35. krokenstein says:

    Keep on guys ! It’s my first comment but I’m reading your blog since some months !

  36. Kolja says:

    Wow, that looks so awesome!!! This is what I’m waiting for years! I’ve played Dungeon Master and EOTB very often. The atmosphere of this games are unreached…
    Can’t wait till it’s out!
    For what I can tell so far it looks like a dream come true…

  37. Jim says:

    Any chance of this post’s header graphic being posted as a 2560×1600? My desktop is crying out for this… πŸ™‚

  38. Max says:

    As a Mac user I have been wondering will this be also released to Mac? And how much will it cost?

  39. Max says:

    Oh and I suppose that the system requirements won’t be that high, right?

  40. Rex says:

    when will this amazeing game come out?

    • juho says:

      The date isn’t yet decided. It’s around the end of this year.

      • Vampiress says:

        So soon? I was fully expecting it to not be until 2012 some time – careful not to overestimate yourselves, rather take the time you need and get things right before getting people’s hopes up too much πŸ™‚

        • Jack Dandy says:

          You can finally work in your own timeslot, according to your own pace. Make full use of it!

        • Mole says:

          That’s right. Any time up until the 25th of December will do fine, so no hurry. πŸ˜‰

  41. Mike says:

    After reading “mixing your own drinks” I accidentally got the next line as “We added snacks–“. My bad.

  42. Armen says:

    Would be nice to have it as a wallpaper. Looks amazing.

  43. How to says:

    I‘¯m still learning from you, while I‘¯m trying to reach my goals. I absolutely liked reading all that is written on your blog.Keep the stories coming. I liked it!