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(Some Guy)   Help a farker out Come play-test his online strategy warfare game   (proto-rumors.heroku.com) divider line 64
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490 clicks; posted to FarkUs » on 11 Dec 2012 at 8:08 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-11 04:54:58 PM
Rumors of War is in prototype testing. We have a small set of testers at this point, and with each phase of development we're looking for more. Today we entered a new testing phase, so we're coming back to the Fark community to broaden our reach.

We've been working on the game for three years now, in solid development for a year and a half. We are not yet "public", but we are starting to reach out get a broader tester base.

New Stuff since the last Fark post (several months ago):

-Tutorial System
-Defensive Siege (including town walls, new army management system)
-In game political titles (Lord, Baron, Viscount, King, etc) based on real world location, i.e. there is only one "Baron" of any given real world town, only one "King" of any given real world country).
-Facebook achievements (if you choose to use Facebook to log in).
-Culture Points (used to measure in game progress/contest titles)

Rumors is a medeival fantasy online strategy game, using Googlemaps APIs so that the world, literally, is our game board. The intent here is that ultimately (when we have thousands of players) the players will play the game in or near their real world locations, battling for control of their home towns.

The game is designed so that players can interact on many different social levels, as well as compete economically, informationally,politically and militarily. It focuses more on the prelude to war than on the war itself, using classic fantasy hirelings (Spymasters, Priests, Brigands, Assassins, Merchants, etc) to interact with each other, prepping the battlefield for the "units marching" phase of war.

We've built systems in the game to get around the classic problems of online strategy games where new players are steamrolled by those who have been around for a while. The game is designed for players to interact with each other on much more than the "conquer other player's cities" level, with the ability to work together within a fuedal system where players swear fealty to others and work together as a large Kingdom.

The core new system we're bringing to the genre is our Rumors system, which makes the game feel more alive. Most online strategy games don't do a good job of making players aware of the other players around them, until such a time as a gargantuan army shows up at your doorstep and burns your towns down. In Rumors, everything that the players do can create rumors...nuggets of information that other players learn. You can increase the rumors you gain about other player's actions by hiring Spymasters to dig into things,
take your hirelings to other player's towns and interact with their populace, and more.

If you're interested, know going into it that this is a prototype. It is NOT an "A Title" game...yet. We have bugs, and we have incomplete systems. There's lots of work for us to do to take the game to where it needs to be to be massively successful.

But we think we have something here. We get a lot of feedback that this could be the next Big Thing. We're planning on taking it there, but we need help testing out the concepts, and we need more feedback about what is good and what isn't, what needs more work, and even new ideas that we can incorporate that would make the game better.

If you're the tester type, come help us out!

Thanks!

Thuull

In Game Help system (can be viewed without an account): https://proto-rumors.heroku.com/help

VERY IMPORTANT: If you're the type who likes to just "jump right in", please make sure you create your first town in the Eugene, Oregon area...the in game map focuses on the center of the play area when you first log in. Rumors relies heavily on other player interaction, so starting somewhere where there are no other players will at this point in the game be an incredibly boring experience!

http://proto-rumors.heroku.com
 
2012-12-11 05:04:04 PM
Sorry, but I'm not going through a registration process without seeing any screenshots or gameplay video first.
 
2012-12-11 05:12:32 PM
Datastorm Studios on Facebook has some screenies and such.

Sorry that we're short on bell's n' whistles...we've not exactly done a marketing campaign. We're in dev/prototype testing so are not at a phase where we're spending a lot of effort trying to be appealing to your average player at this point.
 
2012-12-11 05:28:51 PM

Thuull: n' whistl


And I'm not going to facebook for anything.
 
2012-12-11 05:29:52 PM
This sounds interesting, I'll check it out. My younger brother is really into gaming UO, Eve online, WOW, SW Galaxies... the list goes on (I can't keep up with all of the games he's active in) and he's worked for a couple of game developers. You mind if I send him a link?
 
jbc [TotalFark]
2012-12-11 05:32:23 PM
Eugene, Oregon?!? Pass.
 
2012-12-11 05:34:33 PM

Monkey2: This sounds interesting, I'll check it out. My younger brother is really into gaming UO, Eve online, WOW, SW Galaxies... the list goes on (I can't keep up with all of the games he's active in) and he's worked for a couple of game developers. You mind if I send him a link?


Not at all, and thanks.
 
2012-12-11 05:35:51 PM

jbc: Eugene, Oregon?!? Pass.


Heh, that's just where the current round of testing is focused. Our lead dev is from that area. Last round was in the Philly area.
 
2012-12-11 06:04:06 PM

Thuull: Rumors of War


Is an awesome High on Fire song.
 
2012-12-11 06:07:53 PM

jbc: Eugene, Oregon?!? Pass.


On the left-hand side of course - it is Eugene after all.
 
2012-12-11 06:12:04 PM
Went ahead and created an account, also emailed my bro the info. I didn't get too far into it yet but what I've seen looks really cool. I'll have time to get everything setup tomorrow and start really tinkering. Thanks for posting this Thuull.
 
2012-12-11 06:15:44 PM
Is this just another video if a fat guy putting a shop vac on his fave, cause I'm not falling for that again.
 
2012-12-11 06:19:05 PM

poonesfarm: Is this just another video if a fat guy putting a shop vac on his fave, cause I'm not falling for that again.


Damn! What gave it away?
 
2012-12-11 06:20:30 PM

Monkey2: Went ahead and created an account, also emailed my bro the info. I didn't get too far into it yet but what I've seen looks really cool. I'll have time to get everything setup tomorrow and start really tinkering. Thanks for posting this Thuull.


Great. Thanks for checking it out! Should be a pretty solid test round...we've heard back from a bunch of the testers from the last round that plan to come back for this one.
 
2012-12-11 06:24:44 PM

Rev.K: Thuull: Rumors of War

Is an awesome High on Fire song.


Hellz yes it is!
 
2012-12-11 06:48:39 PM

Thuull: The intent here is that ultimately (when we have thousands of players) the players will play the game in or near their real world locations, battling for control of their home towns.


That is both hilarious and awesome, I love the concept. I wish I had the time but best of luck to you.
 
2012-12-11 07:12:19 PM

Thuull: If you're the tester type, come help us out!


I'd like to test this out, though I don't have the time right now, but this sounds a lot like CyberNations to me.
 
2012-12-11 07:16:30 PM

GAT_00: Thuull: If you're the tester type, come help us out!

I'd like to test this out, though I don't have the time right now, but this sounds a lot like CyberNations to me.


Would love to get it to that level. But yeah, that's one of the general vibes we're looking for. We think the inter-player politics is going to get very deep.

Bookmark us and come back sometime in the future GAT_00...we're planning on the long haul with this.
 
2012-12-11 07:20:07 PM

Thuull: GAT_00: Thuull: If you're the tester type, come help us out!

I'd like to test this out, though I don't have the time right now, but this sounds a lot like CyberNations to me.

Would love to get it to that level. But yeah, that's one of the general vibes we're looking for. We think the inter-player politics is going to get very deep.

Bookmark us and come back sometime in the future GAT_00...we're planning on the long haul with this.


Oh I bookmarked it. I'll be testing it.
 
2012-12-11 07:38:34 PM
I'm in game with the same handle. Eugene OR will soon be in ashes as soon as I figure out how to burn shiat
 
2012-12-11 07:52:38 PM

One Bad Apple: I'm in game with the same handle. Eugene OR will soon be in ashes as soon as I figure out how to burn shiat


Muahaha.

There are more than a year's worth of discussions on exactly that topic on the forums. There's a link to the forums at the top of the game window. It is a separate login at this point...we'll integrate them both to the same login at some point in the future.

Basically, commander hireling + one or more units = an army. Army + Invade = shiat burns. Although...influence comes in to play...the more influence you have in a target town, and the less influence your opponent has, the higher your army's morale, hence the greater your chances of success.

We spent a lot of time on the prelude to war...economic warfare, espionage, assassination of key enemy hirelings, influence manipulation. It's hard to just run armies around and kill everything, you've gotta warm that mama up first!
 
2012-12-11 08:02:11 PM

Thuull: O


Muahaha.



Speaking of which why does my spymaster have no available skills listed ?

I sent my army out to kick some ass but it didn't let me choose who. The indiscriminate slaughter is therefor your fault

Building walls seems tedious and clumsy
 
2012-12-11 08:11:43 PM
Speaking of which why does my spymaster have no available skills listed ?


As of right now, the spymaster is a passive information gatherer. The idea is to move him around to different towns to collect rumors of things that have happened in those towns (and towns near it) recently. In the future, we have plans to have an active "investigate" type skill that the spymaster can do to dig deeper into rumors that you're already (partially) aware of.

I sent my army out to kick some ass but it didn't let me choose who. The indiscriminate slaughter is therefor your fault


"Invade" attacks whoever it is who's defending any given town...usually it's owner, unless that town is already under forced vassalage having lost a fight to a different player...we've got none of those yet though, as the reset just happened today...so whatever town you invaded will be defended by whatever unit/army the owning player has there. Good luck!

Building walls seems tedious and clumsy


Yes...that's a recent add within the past two months. It needs work. What is there is functional, but we wasted some dev time trying to make it less tedious and clumsy. We decided to live with the clumsiness for now to get more systems implemented, and we'll go back and put more polish on that in the future. Right now function is more important to us than form, as we're focusing on testing out the main game systems with larger numbers of players.
 
2012-12-11 08:22:53 PM

One Bad Apple: I'm in game with the same handle. Eugene OR will soon be in ashes as soon as I figure out how to burn shiat



:-(
 
2012-12-11 08:28:34 PM
i293.photobucket.com

It's on
 
2012-12-11 08:29:52 PM

Hot Carl To Go: [i293.photobucket.com image 850x44]

It's on


Go ahead...build a town =)
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-12-11 08:31:47 PM
our Rumors system

Rumor has it he's the one I'm sieging you for.
 
2012-12-11 08:36:11 PM

Bathia_Mapes:


:-(


I shall spare you and make you my castle concubine*


*Those are the small spiky rodent things right ?
 
2012-12-11 09:06:03 PM
You should reach out to the people at farkistan.org. They have a whole gaming clan and after it leaves Beta could possibly bring in other clans from the strategy games they play.
 
2012-12-11 09:07:05 PM

One Bad Apple: Bathia_Mapes:


:-(

I shall spare you and make you my castle concubine*


*Those are the small spiky rodent things right ?



Heh!   No, they're not.  That is unless you're into that kind of thing.
 
2012-12-11 09:53:28 PM
Great to see a bunch of new players!

One of the things we do pride ourselves on as a small shop (1 dev, 1 producer) is our interaction with our community. We really want strong, detailed feedback about things you both like and hate, so please feel free with the understanding that we don't have an artist/UI designer, so that part sucks pretty bad ;)

Most discussion happens on our forums (link at the top of the game window), but we'll check back here as well.

Thanks!
Val
 
2012-12-11 10:03:02 PM
Created an account! I'll check it out over the next few days!
 
2012-12-11 10:14:07 PM

Mouthoy: Created an account! I'll check it out over the next few days!


Welcome aboard! Looks like it's going to be an interesting test round.
 
2012-12-11 10:44:34 PM
Signed up under this name... gonna dive in.

Can't wait for the polish phase... the black-on-white san serif stuff in the docs and intro makes my old man eyes twitch :)
 
2012-12-11 11:55:18 PM
How long does it take to get signed up? FWIW, I had an account a few months ago. I sort of abandoned it. Takes too much time, but I've got time now so maybe will try it again.
 
2012-12-12 02:34:16 AM

Happy Hours: How long does it take to get signed up? FWIW, I had an account a few months ago. I sort of abandoned it. Takes too much time, but I've got time now so maybe will try it again.


It takes about a minute to get in game, depending on how long it takes to make a player name and pick your heraldry.
The walkthrough tutorials take between 10-30 minutes depending on how quickly you digest a lot of new information, and can be skipped if you like (although we do recommend going through them all--tons of info on how to play, and what is important in the game).
 
2012-12-12 09:32:35 AM
Signed up and placed my first territory but dont have the time to run through the whole tutorial right now. Will check it out later
 
2012-12-12 09:44:22 AM
The 'hirelings' tutorial goes away when you go into map view, and there's no obvious way to continue it from that point. I used the messages below to hire a regent, build a garrison, and start building an army, but Im not sure if there's anything else in that one.
 
2012-12-12 09:56:35 AM

Hack Patooey: The 'hirelings' tutorial goes away when you go into map view, and there's no obvious way to continue it from that point. I used the messages below to hire a regent, build a garrison, and start building an army, but Im not sure if there's anything else in that one.


I'll take a look. You can always start individual tutorial sections over again...each are relatively short. I don't remember specifically where that individual tutorial finishes.

BTW, I left you a message on your in game Wall...you started way outside of the playtest area. The testers this phase are concentrated around the Eugene, Oregon area where the map focuses when you first log in. You're the only player on the East Coast, so beyond the very initial set of rumors that you get when you first start a character, you won't get more because there aren't any players within range of any of your towns and it'll take likely two weeks or so for any hirelings you might send to reach the West Coast =)

You're welcome to stay where you are but it'd be a lonely experience and you won't get to see the "meat" of the game. Alternate options are to restart with the other testers, or bring in a couple of friends local to you and get them to play in your neighborhood.

Thanks for checkin us out!
 
2012-12-12 11:25:41 AM
Political Landscape 24 hours after the beginning of this test phase:

Baron Valrith - Baron of South Hills, Viscount of Eugene (Disputed)
Sir Shadowshiv - Viscount of Veneta (Disputed)
Viscount Bombicula - Viscount of Medicine Hat
Viscount RedLeader - Viscount of Junction City
Baron One Bad Apple - Baron of University
Sir Murphy - Viscount of Springfield (Disputed)
Baron INTRIGUING TATTOO - Baron of Market District
Baron Die Fledermaus - Baron of Western
Viscount Gruehunter - Baron of Paradise, Viscount of Las Vegas
Sir Jacquard - Baron of Bethel-Danebo (Disputed)
Viscount Kermshizzle - Viscount of Pleasant Hill
Viscount Saltor Redanvil - Viscount of Dexter
Viscount Hack Patooey - Viscount of Littleton

Lots of titles claimed, lots of titles in dispute (already). There are more players so far than this, but these are the ones who have claimed titles.
 
2012-12-12 06:03:44 PM
By request earlier in the thread...here is some candy to look at that does not require registration/login of any kind:

Rumors of War Political Map

This is live game data...it shows only those players who have titles. There are many more players who have not successfully claimed one. Zoom in/zoom out reveals/hides titles of certain levels...at max zoom in, shows all titles (even the small "neighborhood" ones. At max zoom out (country level) it will only show those with King/Queen or Emperor/Empress (no players at those levels yet, that'll take some time).

Enjoy!

i.imgur.com
 
2012-12-12 06:41:15 PM
Just created an account and town
Skean, town is Hell and Highfalls.
Looks interesting.


/Nice way to kill time while working..
 
2012-12-12 07:13:40 PM

Thuull: One Bad Apple: I'm in game with the same handle. Eugene OR will soon be in ashes as soon as I figure out how to burn shiat

Muahaha.

There are more than a year's worth of discussions on exactly that topic on the forums. There's a link to the forums at the top of the game window. It is a separate login at this point...we'll integrate them both to the same login at some point in the future.

Basically, commander hireling + one or more units = an army. Army + Invade = shiat burns. Although...influence comes in to play...the more influence you have in a target town, and the less influence your opponent has, the higher your army's morale, hence the greater your chances of success.

We spent a lot of time on the prelude to war...economic warfare, espionage, assassination of key enemy hirelings, influence manipulation. It's hard to just run armies around and kill everything, you've gotta warm that mama up first!


Actually, each unit's morale is based on the difference between Influences in the unit's home town (not the place you are attacking) for the unit owner (you) and the enemy.

So if I had a 75 influence in my town, and Thuull had a -20 influence in my town, I could attack Thuull anywhere with any unit based in my town, with a net of 95 morale.

The same holds true for defenders: if someone is attacking you in your town, and they have a positive influence in your town, watch out (your troops love them almost as much as they love you), but if you have a positive influence in your own town, and they have a negative influence (your troops love you, and hate them), then they will defend to the death! 

This is why Thuull tends to lose sieges.
 
2012-12-12 07:18:08 PM
Oh, it's on.
 
2012-12-12 07:19:38 PM

Unoriginal_Username: Just created an account and town
Skean, town is Hell and Highfalls.
Looks interesting.


/Nice way to kill time while working..


Yup, it is =)

I saw you plant your town...you're pretty close to me. Perhaps we should get the guys in our area together and go whoop on Valright, since he wants to talk shiat. Welcome aboard.
 
2012-12-12 08:18:56 PM

Thuull: Unoriginal_Username: Just created an account and town
Skean, town is Hell and Highfalls.
Looks interesting.


/Nice way to kill time while working..

Yup, it is =)

I saw you plant your town...you're pretty close to me. Perhaps we should get the guys in our area together and go whoop on Valright, since he wants to talk shiat. Welcome aboard.


Sounds good. Btw, looks good on mobile browser too.
 
2012-12-12 08:23:32 PM

Unoriginal_Username: Thuull: Unoriginal_Username: Just created an account and town
Skean, town is Hell and Highfalls.
Looks interesting.


/Nice way to kill time while working..

Yup, it is =)

I saw you plant your town...you're pretty close to me. Perhaps we should get the guys in our area together and go whoop on Valright, since he wants to talk shiat. Welcome aboard.

Sounds good. Btw, looks good on mobile browser too.


Good to know thanks. We've gotten feedback in the past that it is hard to play on mobile phones because of screen real-estate. Especially going through multiple pages of rumors. We'll tackle that after all of the major code systems are done though.

We do have a couple of guys playing (have been for months) that play only on iPads, and one on a Galaxy...they're mostly happy with the game on them. The Galaxy guy does complain that the browser doesn't like the game much, plays sluggish n' all.
 
2012-12-12 08:35:31 PM

Thuull: We do have a couple of guys playing (have been for months) that play only on iPads


My wife just signed up and will be playing on iPad. I've looked at it and it's different but I'm an Apple noob so it might not be bad. Hell, I'm still figuring it out on PC so we'll see. We'll both try to leave feedback when we think it will be useful.
 
2012-12-12 08:49:37 PM

Monkey2: Thuull: We do have a couple of guys playing (have been for months) that play only on iPads

My wife just signed up and will be playing on iPad. I've looked at it and it's different but I'm an Apple noob so it might not be bad. Hell, I'm still figuring it out on PC so we'll see. We'll both try to leave feedback when we think it will be useful.


Cool, thanks for that. This thread will probably roll in a couple of days, so if you're planning on hanging for a while the best place for feedback/bug reports would be the game forums. There's a link at the top of the game (top nav bar) to the forums.

We don't have the forums linked with the game itself yet (future!) so they are separate logins. On the plus side, while there you can not only provide feedback/report bugs but look at the past year and a half of info that we've gone back and forth with with other testers, lots on game ideas, how to play, how all the game systems work...etc. We like to bounce ideas off the testers before we actually implement them and get really great feedback from people on ideas (ours and their own) as they come up.

Certainly not required - you guys are helping US out just by playing the game - but certainly helpful if you want to be more involved.
 
2012-12-12 08:55:51 PM

Thuull: Unoriginal_Username: Thuull: Unoriginal_Username: Just created an account and town
Skean, town is Hell and Highfalls.
Looks interesting.


/Nice way to kill time while working..

Yup, it is =)

I saw you plant your town...you're pretty close to me. Perhaps we should get the guys in our area together and go whoop on Valright, since he wants to talk shiat. Welcome aboard.

Sounds good. Btw, looks good on mobile browser too.

Good to know thanks. We've gotten feedback in the past that it is hard to play on mobile phones because of screen real-estate. Especially going through multiple pages of rumors. We'll tackle that after all of the major code systems are done though.

We do have a couple of guys playing (have been for months) that play only on iPads, and one on a Galaxy...they're mostly happy with the game on them. The Galaxy guy does complain that the browser doesn't like the game much, plays sluggish n' all.


I'm on a galaxy s atm. It is a touch sluggish, but that is probably more a network issue then phone. The only problem I ran into was placing a building during the tutorial. Still, being able to access the game on the phone, check rumors hand out tasks will be nice.
 
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