Roguelikes and D&D: A profound connection

Miniatures on a grid board utilized for a Dungeons and Dragons game in La Mesa, California
Miniatures on a grid board utilized for a Dungeons and Dragons game in La Mesa, California  (source)

Finally, after many weeks of delays and many hours of work, I managed to finish a new article based on the research I did for my 2018 talk at the roguelike celebration. I hope this article provides useful insights and allows having an additional approach to roguelikes as a genre on its own.

Many thanks to all the friends who provided useful feedback. ūüôā

Can we find useful insights on what a #roguelike is, by examining the results of the efforts of the developers of rogue and other early roguelikes to bring their beloved #dungeonsanddragons hobby into the world of computing?

You can read the article HERE

ExpeditionZ ‚Äď Tech Demo Update 2

We have been working on the tech demo for about a month now.

Screen Shot 2018-12-02 at 10.36.28 PM

Some of the things we did since the last update:

  • Added (and then broke) a minimap system where the game world gets unveiled as you explore.
  • Add a “journal”-like thing to the HUD, displaying the date, location, supplies, mood, and weather info.
  • Add a day/night cycle, time goes by and is reflected on the lighting conditions of the main map.
  • Moved away from the fantasy land and into Earth
  • Added “rain” particle effect for when it rains.
  • Decided to go 3D for the main map view instead of the antique map aesthetic. Invested quite a bit of time on making the water look fine.
  • Added instance-able test towns including test town view.
  • Added temp title screen.
  • Acquired and imported Earth’s terrain elevation data (mainly from 2000’s NASA’s Shuttle Radar Topography Mission), for a sector including the Caribbean, Central America, and part of South America.

Along with these developments, I’ve been working on finishing the GDD and the plans for the completed Tech Demo. We are focusing on finishing a test scenario, and soon we are going to have more involvement from a cool 2D artist to bring the UI to life. The title screen painting is also being worked on now.

ExpeditionZ – Tech Demo Update 1

We have been working on a new version of Expedition for a couple weeks now.

Exploring the test map

After some initial brainstorming sessions, we set to create a game based on the original Expedition, but streamlined and more focused.

What we have so far is a ship sailing in a test fantasy world, you can also land, walk around, and board back your ship.

Along the way, we also experimented with some simple Line of Sight / Fog of War thing, but ended up ditching it in favor of an automap currently in the works.

Some simple fog of darkness

Stay tuned for more info!

Winners of Ananias RoguelikeCel 18 Tournament

Congrats to the winners of The Tournament!

  • #1 – Jebidiah, with Sheena the Barbarian. Killed by a Porpworm on level 29 after 81:36. Downed 555 monsters
  • #2 – Geist, with MarMi the Alchemist. Killed by a Drogon on level 28 after 308:37. Downed 462 monsters
  • #3 – @burdfishdemon, with Red Warrior the Barbarian. Killed by a Guardian on level 17 after 75:57. Downed 270 monsters
  • #4 – @moemustaine, with Scalebearer the Barbarian. Killed by a Demonspawn on level 16 after 43:41. Downed 259 monsters
  • #5 – Adam Boyd, with Rodney the Monster Slayer. Killed by a Sireen on level 14 after 75:06. Downed 200 monsters
Adam Boyd receiving his prizes at roguelikecel
Adam Boyd receiving his prizes at roguelikecel
Burdfishdemon's loot
Burdfishdemon’s loot
Tombstone of Sheena the Barbarian
Tombstone of Sheena the Barbarian

Ananias RoguelikeCel 18 Tournament!

The Roguelike Celebration 2018 is coming! We are celebrating it with a new Ananias Roguelike tournament with Cool Prizes! are you bad enough to win the tournament?

Prizes!

1st place 2nd place 3rd place 4th place 5th place
Money 50$ 20$ 10$
Ananias Box with instruction booklet X
Original Art Card X X X
Paladin Red T-Shirt X X X X
Ananias Stickers Set (8) X X X X X

 

How to participate

  • Share your Gravestone page, including a screenshot of your journey, via twitter using the #ananias18¬†and¬†#roguelike hashtags.¬†(See here for a Gravestone page)
  • You are also encouraged to share it on reddit but it’s not required
  • You can submit your character any time before October 7, 4PM PST
  • Participate playing in any valid official 2.4.4 version of the game, including Android, iOS, Steam and Web. No Fellowship Edition required.
  • You can also participate playing in person in the Roguelike Arcade at the Celebration (but it’s not required)
  • Winners will be picked based on the standard scoring criteria (depth level, then kills)
  • You can use any class / pet combo

Notes:

  • Money Prizes to be awarded via Paypal
  • Ananias Box and Manual – No diskette
  • T-Shirts available in limited sizes – To be awarded as available.
  • Sticker set will contain assorted characters as available.
  • Physical prizes will be delivered in person at the Roguelike Celebration on Sunday October 7. If you are not attending then they will be sent to you for an additional Shipping cost to be paid via paypal.

FAQ

  • How can I get the gravestone page for my character?

Just create an account in the game, and then when your character dies or ascends use the “Gravestone” button

gravestone

Trailer for the Roguelike Celebration 2018

The Roguelike Celebration is happening again this year, October 6 and 7. I will be flying to SanFran to assist and also give a talk about the History of Roguelikes.

Had an idea running on my head for a while to make a “trailer” for the event (no one asked me for it).¬†At first, I thought of creating a playable classic roguelike using my JSRL roguelike template. I actually did create the foundations for it (as in walk in a predefined map), but it lacked the cinematic potential for a short trailer. In any case, I integrated the “torch” effect from the unicodetiles.js example into JSRL, which may be useful. You can check out the integration here.

Screen Shot 2018-08-10 at 7.30.17 AM

Then I had another idea and I just couldn’t be at peace until I implemented it. I think it occurred to me a day while driving and listening to the Mega Man III OST. I thought I had found the perfect tune for it. So, even in a busy week with lots of work, I just had to do it.

The trailer features the awesome speakers’ lineup in a “robot-masters” NES Megaman stage selected style.

I implemented it using JavaScript and Phaser, you can check the source code here and the demo running live here

Of course, there’s little structure to the project since it was meant to be a quick job (and is also pretty simple).¬†Most of the relevant logic can be found in a single Object, the Game state. I set up a stage with a black background and the gray strip, as well a Sprite object for the character and 4 text fields. I used a Megaman 10 font (I had found another one for Megaman 2 but for some reason, it could not be loaded as a web font), I performed a simple centering function based on each line’s character count to keep the characters as sprites in the grid (thus getting a bit close to being a NES “background sprite”?).

There was also a simple “particle” animation in the background, instead of stars they were small @ signs because, you know, roguelike. I used the same color palette used on the Roguelike Celebration logo for them.

Of course, the most fun part was doing the pixel art for the speakers. I used a bunch of Mega Man 2 robot masters as a base and then I proceeded on tweaking them for each speaker. The ones I know in person where easier, for the others I had to do a bit of stalki Internet research, I hope I managed to capture their likeness.

Finally, I reused the “Retro TV with scanlines” from Cat Cafe.