crpg

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Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 153: The Jennell Jaquays Interview: The Dungeoneer

Hi, guys! I'm back this week with one of the rare female guests to grace Matt Chat, Jennell Jaquays, one of the true greats of role-playing. Jennell has done lots of videogame work--including the Coleco--but here we focus on her background in D&D. She's the author of some of the best modules and books on the topic of good role-playing. She's now serving as the lead level designer on the World of Darkness MMORPG, an upcoming CCP game (think Vampire: The Masquerade). Enjoy!

Download the episode here.

Shawn Delahunty's picture

Nothing Adds Up & The Dice Are Loaded - part 2 of ?

All right folks, this time I'm back to cover the second topic for this pair (group? series?) of articles. (As an aside: I have NO idea exactly how or why my stuff turns into multi-part explorations--it just does, all on it's own. Which is weird, considering I'm the guy supposedly running the keyboard when I write. So I have to ask your indulgence here.) Anyway, just to refresh your memory or in case you missed Part #1, here are the two game related topics I brought up for everyone to mull over.

  • Zero-sum games, or zero-sum outcomes
  • The danger and difficulty of "Truly Random"
Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 142: Wasteland

Wasteland! By now, everybody who has ever been a fan of this game knows about Brian Fargo's Kickstarter project to make the sequel. So, naturally, I decided this week to take a look at the hallowed original. While not everything has aged gracefully, I must say it still holds up rather well today, with a particularly gritty storyline and great writing (printed in the manual, of course). It's also a remarkably violent game, going so far as to have the player slaughtering "cute little animals" and even babies! This game would definitely get an M rating today and probably arouse the ire of our good friend Hillary Clinton. At any rate here's the video!

You can download the mp4 here.

Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 133: Gothic Time

It's Gothic time! Yes, finally, after countless requests, Matt Chat covers the 2001 German CRPG Gothic. Of course, this game launched a trilogy, and apparently Risen is keeping the lineage alive. Lots of fun stuff in this game, and some pioneering stuff like the ability to skin animals (you can even get their teeth and claws!), cook food (grilled chicken!), and much more. Plagued by one of the slowest starts in any CRPG, though, it hasn't attracted the attention that it really deserves. If you can get through the first 3-4 hours of it, you'll be hooked. Just don't blow all your ore at the swamp weed stand!

Download the mp4 here.

Bill Loguidice's picture

Bill's Darklands Slog 001

I'm still not sure if I'm going to make this a formal slog or not, or even how long I'll keep this up, but for what it's worth, this counts as the first Darklands play entry. As mentioned, I've been trying to figure out how to find time to play more involved games, starting with Darklands. So, even though I didn't actually finish reading the extensive Darklands manual, I decided to start playing the game anyway to get a real feel for the game before going through the rest of the manual. Sometimes that's what you need to do. First thing of course was I created my characters. It's interesting that there's no traditional way to create character classes--you just sort of guide your characters down certain paths. I'm not sure if I did that correctly as I tried to make traditional fighter, priestess, wizardress, and thief classes for the four character slots. It seems at least for the priestess, it was a total failure...

iPhone photo of desktop with Darklands packaging
Yeah, Darklands is definitely a classic CRPG. Just take a look at that box contents sprawl on my desktop...

Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 127: Jay talks piracy and DRM for indie games

Hi, guys, this week Jay and I chat about the sales of Frayed Knights and the apparent effect that massive piracy has had on their rapid decline. While Jay acknowledges that DRM has its problems--especially when it makes a pirated product superior to a legal one--it's hard to deny that some kind of protection is essential to maximize sales. Watch the video and let us know YOUR opinion on DRM.

Download the mp4 here.

Matt Barton's picture

Jay Barnson on CRPGs and Frayed Knights

Jay is back this week to talk more about his work on Frayed Knights and its many inspirations and precedents, including his favorite CRPG--Ultima VII.

NOTE: The above video has some missing footage around the 28 minute mark. The version below has been corrected.
mattchat125.mp4. You can also grab an audio-only feed here: Matt Chat 125.mp3.
Don't forget to shop at GOG using my affiliate link! Some great stuff this week for adventure game lovers.

Matt Barton's picture

Matt chats Twisted Metal and Warhawk with code monkey Jay Barnson

This week debuts my new interview series with the Rampant Coyote, aka Jay Barnson. You probably know Jay from his blog and game site, as well his fantastic indie CRPG Frayed Knights: The Skull of S'makh-Daon, which yours truly helped to be beta test. In this segment we talk about Jay's extensive industry background, which includes some projects you've probably heard of if you owned a PS1--Twisted Metal and Warhawk! Enjoy.

As always, you can download the video. This week also marks the beginning of my Subscriber Goal of 7,000 subs by the end of the year. As of this writing, I'm at 6,256, so quite a bit of work left to go. If you have a forum, blog, Reddit, Twitter account, or WHATEVER, please post there about your favorite episodes and try to spread the word so we can grow our community into a force to be reckoned with! Thanks!

Matt Barton's picture

The Time Police (Working Towards a Pitch)

I've been working on this thing I'm calling a game pitch for a few weeks now and thought it was time to put it out there to see what people think of the general concept. In a nutshell, this is Deus Ex with Time Travel, Tactical Combat, and Disco Dancing. I've also made big changes to the way character creation, leveling, and dialog are handled.

It's not complete, but I think there's enough here for you to get the basic idea and see whether it sounds like something you'd be interested in playing. It's not totally original or super ambitious or anything, but for what it's worth I've tried to imagine the sort of game I'd most like to play and this is it.

Let me know what you like about it first, and then we can get down to what needs re-thinking.

Oh, I know for sure this is way, way beyond anything I'm personally capable of developing myself. The "dream scenario" is that we could get this to a real developer who can turn the dream into reality (without, let's hope, altering it beyond recognition).

Matt Barton's picture

Matt's Podcast #2: Absolutely Reticulous

Shoot me now.If this is Syndicate, shoot me now.It's a smorgasbord of topics this week as I take on the question of "What the hell happened to modern CRPGs?" Why is everything becoming a first-person shooter game? The excrement begins to fly with the upcoming Syndicate and X-Com games. I explain why you should avoid any game "with a great story" and why I couldn't care less about Skyrim and Diablo III. I also talk about my experiences with Baldur's Gate and what I'd really like to see in future CRPGs. Hint: it ain't better narratives.

Download the mp3.

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