dev frame – Sieging Castles

Aug
20

dev frame – Sieging Castles


We’re getting closer to testing our new battle mode, which will be used in the Raid Mode battles, and also in the Strategic Map later in the future. There are some pretty cool pictures in the dev frame!

 

Community Events

 

There are multiple community organized events happening in the game on weekly and monthly basis. You’re free to join them whenever you feel like it, but try not to be late! To do so, all you have to do is go to the Battles menu in the barracks and sign up for either Conquest or Skirmish event. After that, you just need to be in the game when the event you signed up for is about to start, and click Join button.

 

There is a special event today in the European region! It’s being hosted by Ramses in Skirmish game mode, and it’s a Formations event, meaning that you, as a participant, have to listen to your commander and follow his orders. Communication will happen on the official Discord voice channel, so you have to be there listening to either Ramses or Svea, the second commander, but you don’t need to speak yourself if you don’t want to.

 

The event will start at 6:00 PM UTC, which is in about one hour from now!

 

Official Discord channel – https://discord.gg/DRqmAQ6

 

 

 

Knights Of Valor

 

Mara, an active community member and the leader of the NSX clan in North America, made a very cool action film by fighting and interacting with other players in the game! Not to spoil anything, I will simply mention that it has an intriguing plot, cool music, and some very fine combat!

 

As described by the great director himself: “An ominous outbreak of wretched men threaten the ever fragile safety of the mainlands. Is the kingdom destined for ruins?”

 

 

coders

Lots Of UI

 

Since UI tools have been improved in the past, we’re now able to implement menus with additional functionality, as well as heavily change currently used UI elements. There have already been features implemented with new menus, like the Clan feature, Battle Scheduler, and others, but we’re also introducing some changes for the available mechanics that were planned originally, but had to be delayed due to UI tooling work.

 

One of such features has been introduced quite a while ago with The Arena game mode’s update. Those are, of course, loot chests with many treasures inside! At the moment, you’re able to find the chests in every mode of the game – Conquest, Skirmish, Hold Your Ground, The Arena, and even hidden all over lobby maps. Coming soon, you will also find the chests by playing the Raid Mode and the Strategic Map.

 

Right now, when you receive a chest, its content automatically gets added to your inventory. It’s not very interesting, since it doesn’t provide any suspense to finding them, and it’s very easy to let a loot message go unnoticed when in a heat of a battle. This is currently being changed by creating a special new menu for Loot Chests, and allowing players to open them manually.

 

For example, whenever you find a new Loot Chest, it will be added to your chests storage. Located in the barracks, you can open it any time and see four different chest types – Common, Uncommon, Rare, and Royal Chests. Clicking on any of them, assuming you have at least one chest of that type, will make your character open it and show everything found inside.

 

A design for the Loot Chests UI.

 

Another feature, which is currently not available in the game, but is using some of the current UI elements like the map in the Conquest game mode, also requires some UI work on both artistic and coding sides. The feature is an upcoming battle mode, which will be used in the Raid Mode and the Strategic Map, and has been announced in the previous dev frame.

 

Since the mode is designed to be very tactical-based, it has to have some form of a map for battle commanders and their soldiers to be able to understand their current positions, what territory has been already captured, and what is the final goal of each side. Check one of the UI designs for a map below!

 

 

As you can see, the map is focusing on tactical clarity, making the main paths and objectives stand out. Let’s go over the elements to make it clear what each of them represents.

 

  • Troops bar at the top – How many troops are left on the battlefield on Attacking and Defending sides.
  • Timer– How much time Attackers have to capture a fief or to kill all Defenders.
  • Red objective with swords at the bottom – Base of the Attackers.
  • Blue objective with a shield at the top – Base of the Defenders, and the main objective for the Attackers.
  • Blue diamonds – Objectives held by the Defenders.
  • Red lines around the objectives – Number of captured objectives around a specific objective. It represents how long it will take for Defenders to spawn on that objective.
  • Red circles – Captured objectives, but not linked to the Attackers’ base.
  • Red circled with buttress – Captured objectives, linked to the Attackers’ base and locked.
  • Red brick path – Showing linked locked objectives and pointing towards objectives that would be locked if captured.

 

If you have any additional questions about the map and its elements or would like to point out something that is not clearly represented on the map, please let us know on our official Discord channel or forums!

 

Of course, the map is not the only UI element in the new battle mode. While actually fighting on the battlefield, it should also be possible to know how to reach a specific objective from your location and what is the state of the siege. Specially for that, we’re implementing a minimap, which is a slightly simplified and smaller version of the big map. Check it down below!

 

 

 

artists

 

Siege Of The Castle

 

Last week we announced that we’re working on a new battle mode, which will be used in the upcoming Raid Mode and as the main mode for battles arranged on the Strategic Map later in the future. While most of the mechanics of the mode have been discussed in the previous dev frame, there is another requirement for the game mode to go into live, and it’s slightly different from coding. That requirement is, of course, a new map, fully compatible with all of the features planned!

 

Initially, we plan to have a single map for each fief type, which are a village and a castle. We will obviously expand the list of all the maps for you to have battles on later, possibly even introducing some form of generation to provide more unique environments in a more distant future. For now though, we’re focusing on creating those two maps in order to start testing the mode as soon as possible, and be able to include it in one of the game updates.

 

Early version of the map, showing layout of a double gated entrance.

 

While having a choice between two different fief types, we decided to start from the castle, since it’s the most challenging one to capture, therefore providing interesting scenarios each battle and encouraging tactical approach by commanding the players on each side.

 

At the moment, the Castle map is still in early stage, even though the design and the main layout is finished. Technical part of the level design is over, so the next step is rather straightforward – make the castle and its surrounding as interesting and gameplay-friendly as possible.

 

The main aspect of the new battle mode is giving a total freedom to army commanders, allowing them to utilize whatever plan they prepare for either sieging a castle or defending it from the enemy’s forces. The map design has to supplement that feature by having multiple possibilities for breaching defensive lines of the castle, which will be explained below.

 

Take a look at the pictures of the castle map, showing a simplified layout of the future stronghold. The map represents the castle itself, without any surroundings like houses or forests that will later appear around it in the game. The blue shield represents the main base of the castle defenders, but there are also tactical arrows coloured differently from each other.

 

 

 

Those are the main paths from the initial base of the attackers, located in a war camp on the other side of a moat, towards their main objective at the very top of the map. There will also be other possible paths of course, going off the main layout, like many accessible walls and towers, but let’s focus on major ones.

 

The first one in the middle, which looks like the most perfect entrance to start a siege from due to its overall length between two bases, is actually the hardest one to attack. The middle of the castle, providing an almost complete cover for defenders from all sides, and allowing ranged players to easily dominate attackers by shooting from above, would be a sheer hell for any commander.

 

There are, of course, many ways to capture a castle, so don’t instantly exclude the middle gate from your planning during your siege. For example, you could command the main group of your army to attack the middle entrance, while sending a small number of soldiers to more distant gates to eliminate defenders from behind by making them all focus on a single entrance.

 

Perfect place for archers and crossbowmen to shoot attacking forces.

 

Other two major paths are longer than the middle one, but at the same time providing either more cover for attackers or generally making it harder for defenders to catch intruders off guard. For example, the left one, marked by red arrows, mostly goes outside the castle, forcing defenders to limit their counterattacks to shooting from a long distance or even leaving their castle walls behind and fighting outside the stronghold.

 

The right path, represented by purple arrows, goes through the castle itself, giving an upper hand to defenders, but opens more choices as attackers breach the first wall. It generally wouldn’t be the best idea to commit to only a single path, since defenders might be very strong while defending one of the sides, but get completely destroyed when trying to defend another.

 

As a commander, you should try to estimate where defenders will have less chances to successfully withstand your attacks, but also keep an alternative plan in case they exceed your expectations.

 

We’re planning to start testing the map and the new battle mode locally sometime early next week, and will inform you once it’s ready to be added to our nightly testing server, so you’re able to try it out before it’s in a live release!

 

Don’t bring long weapons to narrow corridors of the castle walls!


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