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Posts posted by ixfd64

  1. Two things I really like about Blades of Exile are its combat system and the ability to create a game world with lots of meaningful content. However, the arbitrary limits on the number of items and NPCs kind of gets in the way of creating a truly epic scenario. The open source version promises to change this, but it looks like it'll be quite a while before it fully supports unlimited items and characters (or at least a very large number of them).


    So I'm wondering: are there any other good RPG editors out there?


    The things I'm looking for (with the more important factors in bold) are:


    * Open source if possible

    * The ability to make standalone games (executables) is a plus

    * Scripting

    * Support for unlimited items and NPCs (although an engine with a very large cap will do)

    * A graphics library

    * A low learning curve is also a plus


    Thanks in advance!

  2. I think Jeff said he wants to wait until BoA sales drop to negligible levels before he releases the source code.


    For the record, selling a game and releasing its source code are not mutually exclusive. It's possible to release only the game engine under a free license and keep the game content proprietary.

  3. Several years ago, Jeff mentioned that Blades of Avernum didn't do as well as he had hoped. According to him, the main reason was that scenario design was too complicated for the average gamer, especially if they don't have any programming experience. The game only comes with four scenarios out of the box, which might not seem like much to some people.


    So here's an idea: Spiderweb could consider releasing a new edition of Blades of Avernum that includes the following:


    1. Support for newer operating systems

    2. A collection of well-received user-designed scenarios. The winners and runner-ups from the scenario design contest would be good candidates for inclusion. Think back to the days of Doom WAD CDs. :-)

    3. Exclusive scenarios. Perhaps Spiderweb could offer contracts to well-known scenario designers (like what id Software did in the case of the Master Levels for Doom II) and give them store credit if their scenario gets selected. The scenarios would be copyrighted and owned by Spiderweb.

    4. Other exclusive items. Things like comics books or figurines, etc.


    It probably wouldn't too much effort compared to writing a new game from scratch, but it could bring in a lot of new interest. Just a thought.


    Maybe the same could also be done for Blades of Exile. :-)

  4. Java would probably be a better choice as it could be run on just about any operating system.


    Blades of Exile has one of the best RPG systems out there, and I would hate to see its development come to a standstill. But as the above user mentioned, rewriting the game is no easy task. That having been said, I see three possible course of action:


    1. Find a way to renew interest.


    Games like Doom have maintained a large fan base after so many years. The Exile series may not be as popular, but I don't see how it's impossible to get more people interested in it again.


    2. Actively recruit people.


    There are many, many talented programmers out there. If we find someone who has experience in developing games, it wouldn't hurt to ask them if they would be willing to help.


    3. Hire a freelance coder.


    The main issue here is money. A conservative estimate is that it'll take at least several man-years to write a game engine from scratch. Software engineers are in high demand right now, and having someone rewrite BoE for us would likely cost at $500,000. So I don't think this is going to work out.


    4. Wait a couple of decades.


    Computers of the future are likely to be much more powerful than the human brain, and it may be possible to simulate hundreds of software developers working together. Such simulations may even be replaced by strong AI. "Computer, analyze this file [the current version of BoE] and rewrite it in Java, using the specs in [file name]." But that's probably going to be a very long wait.


    #1 is probably the best choice, although #2 may also help.

  5. Hm, too bad. Waited too long with the whole archiving thing.


    Though I understand that all content of that forum lives on (in a very mangled form) in this current version.


    One major problem is that the old inter-forum links will all be broken. However, I don't imagine it being too difficult to run a script that goes through the database and replaces all instances of spiderwebforums.com with spiderwebforums.ipbhost.com.

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