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  • Grim Misadventures #14: Recruitment and Rebuilding

    Greetings Grim Dawn fans!

    Changing it up a bit today, as I’ll be writing this episode of Grim Misadventures. I’ve fed Zantai to the Rifthounds, but made sure I could reanimate him later so he can continue to bring you your regularly scheduled program in the future.

    So over the past few months I’ve been working on the tech side of things to make improvements in the game. Some of these are polishing up existing systems to make sure they work properly when you get your hands on them. While these are essential to make the game playable and fun, they’re sometimes not the most exciting to talk about.

    However, there are also some completely new gameplay features that we haven’t discussed yet! One of these I’d like to share with you today as the subject of our little Grim Misadventure.

    Recruitment and Rebuilding
    One of the themes in Grim Dawn is a world in ruin, with the survivors struggling to rebuild. As such, it would seem a bit out of place to have towns filled with people living a comfortable life with all of the services they need.

    Thus, the towns in Grim Dawn are struggling and will evolve as the game progresses. What’s more, we want you to play a direct part of this rebuilding!

    When you enter Devil’s Crossing at the beginning of the game, (the main Survivors area consisting of the ruined Burrwitch Prison atop a small island) the place will be just holding itself together. Most bridges leading away from the island will be destroyed, the prison will be sparsely populated and filled with rubble, and bad guys will periodically attack a weakened guard contingent over the last bridge left leading to the mainland.

    Sounds depressing huh? Well you get to help fix it! Scattered throughout the world will be NPCs that are either captured, lost, or just trying to fend for themselves. By helping them out you might discover that they have skills that could be useful to the Survivors back at Devil’s Crossing. At this point, you can decide to bring them back and help your desperate refuge grow into a thriving town! (And don’t worry, you won’t need to escort them halfway across the world, as we have portals in the lore )

    The benefits of this aren’t just cosmetic, as this can have a mechanical payoff as well. One example would be finding a traveling merchant, broken down on the road, desperately trying to defend his caravan of goods. By rescuing him and giving him a place in Devil’s Crossing, he will then turn into a vendor, (complete with market stall) and provide higher quality goods, possibly at a discount!


    Fig 1. Depressing / useless rubble pile. Old and busted.


    Fig 2. Fully equipped advanced merchant! New hotness.

    These changes are permanent, so you can watch these towns improve over time, based on your actions. The majority of these also won't be found on a linear path, so exploring the world will be rewarded! We currently have this technology in the game with a few other NPCs/areas designed and implemented, and will be ready for Alpha! Even so, I’d love to hear your ideas for more!

    A doctor who spruces up an infirmary, and provides better healing? A carpenter who can repair bridges opening up other areas? Or even just discovering a few kegs of ale in a cellar, (pristine and untouched by the new horrors that inhabit Cairn) that make a few of the Survivors want to break out into drinking songs. The possibilities are endless!

    Keep your monitors tuned to this forum for more Grim Dawn updates. The next misadventure will be arriving 02/03/13! Remind me to rez Zantai before then… sometimes I forget.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by Jalex; 01-20-2013, 10:03 PM.

  • #2
    Oh noes, Zantai didn't do the Grim Misadventures this time around. The world is coming to an end.


    Thanks for the update, Jalex. I like it that we can make progress with the merchants. Makes the gameplay much more worthwhile, and I cannot wait for more Grim Misadventures, next month.
    Currently playing: Vindictus, Path of Exile: Forsaken Masters, and........real life

    Waiting for: nothing at the moment

    Comment


    • #3
      Excellent, love this type of stuff!
      "I've always felt that a person's intelligence is directly reflected by the number of conflicting points of view he can entertain simultaneously on the same topic."

      Comment


      • #4
        Awesome - I'd like to see a place, which was completely overrun by enemies or at least kept by some outlaws / cultists. You clear the place. Maybe a human enemy surrenders to you and becomes an ally. You can then ask survivors, which are struggling in more miserable places to go to this refuge.

        Not sure if it fits your lore, but some riftgates (portals) might require some care or need to be uncovered. So, you might need to collect some items to reactive a riftgate, or if you convince some miners to join you, then they could repair a collapsed mining tunnel. They would find a portal for you ... not to speak of some ore, from which a blacksmith could produce items for you.

        You could attract all kinds of artisans to the places, where human survivors gather.

        Comment


        • #5
          Rescuable Mercenaries

          Even though I doubt we'll be seeing them, I'd love to be able to rescue a named mercenary who agrees to fight for you, giving you an equippable "scroll" item (a mercenary contract) that goes in the "talisman" slot, allowing you to summon him/her whenever in need. Over the course of the game you'd be able to build up quite a diverse retinue of mercenaries. But like I said, this might need to be modded in/added in with expansions (if you guys at Crate like the idea of mercenaries ). Anyway, awesome work Jalex!
          Cheers for the update,
          Younghappy
          Last edited by Younghappy; 01-21-2013, 04:27 AM.
          [KS] Digital Collector's Edition + Expansion
          I wanted that massively stylish George Washington in-game powdered wig

          Salute of the Fallen HC Player
          Yet there is beauty in death! Ave, Grim Dawn, morituri te salutant!

          Comment


          • #6
            This is the feature I am looking forward to the most (aside from the new mod tools) and I have to say you wrote up a really nice preview.

            I am really looking forward to the alpha.
            "It may take centuries to rise but once the Ice starts moving even mountains will yield."
            - Armant, Prophet of the Northern Empire

            "Buying things enhances my gaming experience."

            Comment


            • #7
              That looks great. According to the post of eisprinzessin :

              I think it would be great if you help that kind of strangers, send them back to the city ,where they are waiting in the tavern and might give you some kind of sidequest. Or Regular quests as the game is processing.

              That would feel like a really "living" place.

              Hope you understand what i mean
              Loyalist Edition - Yay

              Typo´s with : Your, you´re, they´re, their and there are just for you´re ( :P ) personal amusement

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              • #8
                Looking great.

                The one thing that makes me worried about permanent improvements is reaching the full potential, with nothing left to improve. Not sure how this would be solved. Periodic attacks on the outpost, penalties for dying and/or stakes for failing quests is getting your town plundered... or unlocking a "Defend The Fortress" type mission once you reach full completion, with the downside that the cretins will damage your town.

                Anyway, I love the idea of slowly upgrading a crappy outpost to a, well, less crappy outpost

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks for the awesome update! This sound really exciting.

                  No wonder alpha didn't make the X-mas release. But I like the delay + new features better.
                  Legendary to Digital Deluxe, I turn your brain into a tree
                  "I know because when the universe ends there will be three things left.
                  Tyr Anasazi, the cockroaches, and Dylan Hunt trying to save the cockroaches."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Brilliant! Love this idea, can't wait to see it in action.

                    I'm not too worried about reaching full potential. Crate will hopefully be busy working on expansions so it will take a long time before we reach that point - and by then the world event that a gate opens inside Devil's Crossing and you are forced to evacuate the surviors to a new crappy outpost will be ready
                    I don't know too much
                    But I know this
                    Stuff is messed up

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This has to be my favorite update so far. I love the world progression and your direct influence on it.
                      ARPGamer
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                      Visit ARPGamer.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This sounds like a great idea. It would be a good way to make us feel somewhat invested in the towns and characters of the game.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Jalex View Post
                          Recruitment and Rebuilding
                          One of the themes in Grim Dawn is a world in ruin, with the survivors struggling to rebuild. As such, it would seem a bit out of place to have towns filled with people living a comfortable life with all of the services they need.

                          Thus, the towns in Grim Dawn are struggling and will evolve as the game progresses. What’s more, we want you to play a direct part of this rebuilding!

                          When you enter Devil’s Crossing at the beginning of the game, (the main Survivors area consisting of the ruined Burrwitch Prison atop a small island) the place will be just holding itself together. Most bridges leading away from the island will be destroyed, the prison will be sparsely populated and filled with rubble, and bad guys will periodically attack a weakened guard contingent over the last bridge left leading to the mainland.

                          Sounds depressing huh? Well you get to help fix it! Scattered throughout the world will be NPCs that are either captured, lost, or just trying to fend for themselves. By helping them out you might discover that they have skills that could be useful to the Survivors back at Devil’s Crossing. At this point, you can decide to bring them back and help your desperate refuge grow into a thriving town! (And don’t worry, you won’t need to escort them halfway across the world, as we have portals in the lore )

                          The benefits of this aren’t just cosmetic, as this can have a mechanical payoff as well. One example would be finding a traveling merchant, broken down on the road, desperately trying to defend his caravan of goods. By rescuing him and giving him a place in Devil’s Crossing, he will then turn into a vendor, (complete with market stall) and provide higher quality goods, possibly at a discount!

                          These changes are permanent, so you can watch these towns improve over time, based on your actions. The majority of these also won't be found on a linear path, so exploring the world will be rewarded! We currently have this technology in the game with a few other NPCs/areas designed and implemented, and will be ready for Alpha! Even so, I’d love to hear your ideas for more!

                          A doctor who spruces up an infirmary, and provides better healing? A carpenter who can repair bridges opening up other areas? Or even just discovering a few kegs of ale in a cellar, (pristine and untouched by the new horrors that inhabit Cairn) that make a few of the Survivors want to break out into drinking songs. The possibilities are endless!
                          I love the idea of rebuilding the destroyed towns and giving hope to the people that you are aiding. Allowing these npc's to both give you new areas or shortcuts (so portals aren't the only way to get around) to areas or new quests would be an awesome addition. Expanding on your examples:

                          The doctor/hedge witch/seer or whatever could enhance potions for a price or, with a cool down, enhance your health by adding additional health to your maximum or maybe increase health regeneration or something. Maybe allow them to heal a certain amount of health or lessen the duration of poison/disease/curses (so a tier one doctor couldn't heal you totally, and wouldn't have a large effect in lowering the duration/effect of poison/disease/curses and whatever other damage/curses over time effects there are in this game.

                          Carpenter could also enhance the look of the town, and add more buildings so more townsfolk and npc's can come in to occupy the town. Maybe even create a few outposts outside of the town that gives a more defensive position (could be destroyed maybe lol) and perhaps a stock of potions and chest to put stuff in.

                          Finding kegs of ale could open up a bar/tavern which could attract more visitors and therefore lead to more quests or improve the morale of the town and make people respond to you in a better way (open up conversations to again lead to either lore, hints of areas/secrets or quests). Perhaps it could also bring in some sort of mercenary system.

                          A few of my own ideas:

                          Add to the carpenter, change the name to engineer so he/she can also repair or open up tunnels or collapsed cellars/ruins which then gives you more areas to explore. Could also aesthetically make the town stronger with better walls or something.

                          Cartographer/Historian: Perhaps when you first explore an area your character makes a sketchy map of the terrain/locations (randomization might be a problem if the map is reset and unexplored) and the cartographer could make it look nicer and add notes to the overall terrain, enemies and possible areas you might find. Historian could be your character finding fragments of lore scattered around the world which would lead to perhaps new quests, finding new areas (secrets), and maybe items/spells(?)/enemy information -- weaknesses/strengths/whereabouts.

                          One more thing: the pictures on the traders, I still notice how accentuated the flatness of the ground is next to particular objects. A good way to mask this is what you have done with that one torch -- adding weeds around the object. Otherwise the corner when it comes to the object and terrain is glaringly obvious and kind of takes away from a part of realism that can be easily avoided (adding weeds/debris/dead leaves/human litter/scraps/etc...).

                          Otherwise great look and info for the 14th misadventure. Can't wait for this game to come near to release.
                          Shadows of darkness Ever watching without sight Linger in silence
                          Screams of dying breath Of all hope forever lost Dismay Fear then Death
                          Darkness now sated Without hunger they will wait Mercy unheard of

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by yerkyerk View Post
                            The one thing that makes me worried about permanent improvements is reaching the full potential, with nothing left to improve. Not sure how this would be solved. Periodic attacks on the outpost, penalties for dying and/or stakes for failing quests is getting your town plundered... or unlocking a "Defend The Fortress" type mission once you reach full completion, with the downside that the cretins will damage your town.

                            Anyway, I love the idea of slowly upgrading a crappy outpost to a, well, less crappy outpost
                            Originally posted by Flashburn View Post
                            I'm not too worried about reaching full potential. Crate will hopefully be busy working on expansions so it will take a long time before we reach that point - and by then the world event that a gate opens inside Devil's Crossing and you are forced to evacuate the surviors to a new crappy outpost will be ready
                            Both quotes have some good points that I agree with. It would be interesting to have either quests that would be detrimental to certain npc's (kidnapping, betrayals, attacks on the town or outside of town where the npc is traveling/exploring).

                            Otherwise if at the end of this first chapter of Grim Dawn (expansion), perhaps have a large scale surprise attack in which the invading force overwhelms you and the townsfolk in which everyone has to flee causing all those upgrades to be gone in the next expansion and perhaps kill off some of the npc's allowing for new npc's in the expansion to take their place.

                            I agree that having a fully upgraded town and having no more changes to the town happening might make it become bland and add some sort of staleness. It would be interesting to have more of a fluctuating town rather then a upgrade until it's fully upgraded town which detracts the danger that the town should be feeling.
                            Shadows of darkness Ever watching without sight Linger in silence
                            Screams of dying breath Of all hope forever lost Dismay Fear then Death
                            Darkness now sated Without hunger they will wait Mercy unheard of

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I also am really digging this update. I love progression that changes your surroundings for the better and this is right on the nose for me!

                              I know this isn't Harvest Moon or w/e but being able to rescue an alchemist, gather seeds from around the world and have a plot of land to grow the herbs for the potions would be awesome. Perhaps another upgrade to a town could be better guards, walls, and watch towers with cannons/guns in'em that'll shoot out at approaching enemies!

                              On a somewhat more negative note though, when is alpha? Kickstarter ended back in May 2012 and even before Kickstarter the game was being worked on for like 2 years. We're now going into Feb. 2013 with no info on an alpha date in sight - its all getting a bit ridiculous.
                              Last edited by Dri; 01-21-2013, 06:05 AM.

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