A semi-roguelike game inspired by the literature of Jorge Borges, Umberto Eco & Neal Stephenson, and the games Europa Universalis and Dark Souls.URR aims to explore several philosophical and sociological issues that both arose during the sixteenth and seventeenth century (when the game is approximately set), and in the present day, whilst almost being a deep, complex and highly challenging roguelike. It explores questions of philosophical idealism, cryptography, linguistics and the writing and formation of the historical record, and will challenge players to hopefully think in ways and about themes that are rarely touched upon by games.

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2 comments by UltimaRatioRegum on Sep 1st, 2014

In the little bits of time I’ve been able to find to code at the moment, I’ve managed to just about finish off all the different fortress archetypes. There are twelve in total – each nomadic civilization decides on one at worldgen that it will use for their desert encampments, and then each is subsequently generated according to the chosen algorithm. They each also handle rivers going through them in different ways – some loop rivers around them, some have rivers go through them, and there’s a fair bit of code handling the placement of bridges and entrances to ensure that no matter your angle of entering the fortress, and the position of the fortress on/off a river, you can always access the entire thing. Some are large, some are small; most have all their components within the walls, but some have spread out beyond the walls; some are well-defended, some less so. The white %s are placeholders for market stalls which I haven’t yet created the terrain type for, and the large “oval” buildings are barracks, the smaller circular buildings in military districts being buildings where you may find particular NPCs of military value.

Here are some examples. Bear in mind that these images don’t show the changes in height, but rather give you an overall plan of how these areas are laid out. The algorithms shown here are the “Concentric Square”, “Circle Lines”, “Star Fort” and “Cross” variations. They’re tremendous to walk around – even without NPCs (two versions away!) one can already tell what they’ll be like once they’re populated.

Now, for a general update. As regular readers may know, I'm moving towards working on this game full-time for a year, but have to finish my PhD first, which is going well. The first third of it is bordering on submission-ready and I’m now working on the middle third. I’ll be moving house to “start” the full-time development year around the first week of October, give or take, and once I do, we’ll switch back to full and detailed weekly blog updates, regular Facebook/Twitter updates and the rest of it. AND 0.6 WILL BE COMING, as the first step to totally finishing the worldbuilding block within a year of going full-time. Once that officially starts, I might even put up some kind of “one year countdown” on the blog to remind me how many days I have left to finish the worldbuilding. It’s going to be awesome, internet friends. Until next time you can keep up to date on my devblog, Facebook page, or Twitter feed. The devblog is updated weekly on Saturdays (or sometimes Sundays), Facebook a few times a week, and the Twitter roughly daily. Stay tuned... 

Post comment Comments  (30 - 40 of 113)
romenigcandido
romenigcandido Jan 2 2013, 1:46pm says:

I must say that I created an account just to be able to follow the development of this game, and if you ever decide to charge for the game I'll be more than happy to pay. The game seems to be extremely complex, which is something that I love, not to mention that you make ASCII graphics into something beautiful to behold. My sincere congratulations!

+5 votes     reply to comment
UltimaRatioRegum
UltimaRatioRegum Jan 4 2013, 9:44am replied:

My sincere thanks! Very glad you like the concept and the graphics. As I speak, I'm finishing off the religious symbol generation (which there will be a blog entry on next week), which is itself another graphical route I'm exploring (along with flags). Let me know if you have any thoughts/ideas for the game in general, anyway :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
romenigcandido
romenigcandido Jan 4 2013, 11:50am replied:

I have some questions and ideas about Religions, but I'll wait for the next update to comment on the matter.

+2 votes     reply to comment
UltimaRatioRegum
UltimaRatioRegum Jan 4 2013, 8:08pm replied:

Cool; I await them come Monday :).

+2 votes     reply to comment
Arethrid
Arethrid Jan 1 2013, 2:48pm says:

I am looking forward to see this project's final version :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
UltimaRatioRegum
UltimaRatioRegum Jan 4 2013, 8:57am replied:

Thanks :) - though I couldn't possibly say when that will be...

+2 votes     reply to comment
taylan!
taylan! Dec 30 2012, 10:34pm says:

Looks like a very ambitious game and highly interesting. I downloaded 0.2.1 and played around a bit. One thing that I noticed was the frequent loading pauses in the game (to load zones, I assume?), which can be bothersome after a while. Oh and the game crashed for some reason. Are you interested in crash logs to be emailed to you?

+2 votes     reply to comment
UltimaRatioRegum
UltimaRatioRegum Dec 31 2012, 9:56pm replied:

Re: loading, yes, loading does happen often. However, it seems much more often because there is nothing "to do" yet, so to speak - if you're spending half an hour on a single map grid, the odd loading screen shouldn't be a trouble, whereas just running across a map grid is going to trigger another load screen very quickly. Yes, please, absolutely re: the crash log, and info about OS as well :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
UltimaRatioRegum
UltimaRatioRegum Dec 10 2012, 8:16am replied:

Thanks for the question! Well, a longer explanation is going to go up on a blog entry in the future, but here's the brief one. The game produces two kinds of languages from scratch, either based around syllables (so it will generate a database of syllables for that language, like 'car' or 'ur' or 'ab' and piece them together into words) or based around chances of letters, so a language might have 'z' as its most common letter and 'h' as second, so it'll have a preference for those, and same goes for vowels. Each produces visually different languages. The ancient languages in the game do not use a Latin alphabet, but I'm not saying any more about those for a while! If an NPC says a word to you in another language, the game first checks if you know it - if so, it is translated - if not, it checks if a non-English word for that English word yet exists in that language's dictionary. If yes, it uses that word (so 'the' will always be translated the same), if no, it creates a word, checks that word is unique, then adds it to the dictionary. I know this means that all languages have the same grammar/syntax/whatever as English, which is far from true, but from a gameplay perspective I felt they had to keep the same structure to help the player make sense of half-translated sentences, and also because a system for the game recognizing adjectives, nouns, verbs etc and re-ordering them would be a) immensely complex, b) unnoticeable to a player looking at a non-translated language, and c) would prevent the player making informed guesses at unknown words. Shout with any more questions :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
HereticUK
HereticUK Dec 12 2012, 7:27am replied:

That is a very interesting way of generating languages... I shall be keeping an eye on this for sure!

So, will the player character have to learn new languages in order to communicate with others?

+2 votes     reply to comment
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Ultima Ratio Regum
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