Just a note to anyone who wants to keep instantly up-to-date with anything and everything relating to Mordor: Chronicles – I’ll almost always use my Twitter and Twitpic feeds to blurt out the bleeding edge state of affairs, stuff just like the screenshot over there on the right. Like everything else it’s not updated consistently – but it’s probably much better than waiting around for it to appear here!
I think I can sense a lot of diary-clearing going on! Much as I would’ve liked Runic Games to be the ones to announce their date for Torchlight 2 first, I’m still happy to finally have a firm date to look forward to.
Presumably as a reference to the 15th anniversary of the Diablo series, Blizzard will be releasing Diablo III to the general public of Earth on Tuesday, May the 15th. Fwee! Just another two months of nail-chewing to endure before we can all finally get our hands on the latest entry to the series that defined the term “lootfest”.
With it being such a short time away*, it makes me feel somewhat less impatient at not having gotten into the beta. I’m hyped!
* Note: 2 months in “Blizzard time” is barely enough to have a nice cup of tea in, so yes, for them it IS a short time.
The past few days rank up there along with the first week of coding as the most productive time I’ve spent on the game yet, which I suppose can only be a good thing! I thought I’d go into a bit more detail about where things stand as Milestone 4 of Mordor: Chronicles is nearly done.
The main goals for this stage were to get combat working and to allow the player character to equip a selection of weird and wonderful items that are magically placed into his possession by the use of arcane debugging magic. I’d been at a dead stop for a couple of weeks after reaching the dreaded point where I had to formulate a reasonable way of calculating damage done by player and monster attacks… but several days of concentrated braincell burning, spreadsheet wrangling, and interface jockeying has paid off!
Barring a few rough edges, combat and equipment is working, and the video below illustrates how the flow of combat is displayed. As you could probably guess, bloodstains with numbers inside indicate damage dealt, a skull indicates the swing killed a monster, and the small diagonal slashes indicates a miss. Also present are shields, which indicate that you (or a monster) landed a hit successfully but, due to high defence, did no damage. Didn’t catch any of those in this short clip – but they’re there.
There are still rough edges, the most serious being the character’s uncanny ability to move and escape from combat at any point – but nothing some further hacking and bodging can fix!
Tomorrow I’ll be setting up a new level and giving the monsters some varied, real stats to properly check that the combat formula gives satisfactory results (and at least partly matches up with my test spreadsheet). Unless there are signs of serious problems I won’t spend too long balancing and creating real content at this stage, though… that lovely task will come much later.
Although for quite a few weeks of this feature I’ve gone with tracks that a lot of people will already be familiar with, I hope that this one might take you a little by surprise. It was certainly quite elusive to find information about – although I had acquired this MP3 via the indispensable remix.kwed.org, I didn’t know the slightest thing about the game it originally came from…
Zolyx’s Game Music Monday #22: Kate Z. – CityBomber (PsytroniKateZoid remix)
I like to understand the roots of a track, even if it’s only so that I can include a bit of artwork to go with the song in question – and after some tentative research, I couldn’t identify what was going on with City Bomber. Did it refer to this game, a clone of Blitz? None of the emulator images I could find had music anything like what I was looking for… but then, after what in hindsight was an unnecessarily long road, I came across Kate Z.‘s homepage and everything started fitting in much more smoothly!
So, there’s no need to keep passing over this fantastic remix any longer. It’s from the in-game tune of a game which was originally to have been published by Psytronik but switched labels to Visualize part-way through development – then never actually reached completion. It’s a shame, since the demo you can find through Games That Weren’t is really quite fun. Try it!
The remix itself is brilliant, featuring a sublime mix of samples both old and new alongside a great bit of drumming and guitar work that plays to the action and theme of the game nicely. Hopefully it pleases your ears – it surely does mine!
Tune in next week for more blippy beats!