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The final development diary for Ramlord, and subsequently, our release!

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Intro


Hard to believe that after over a year of development, I'm finally ready to announce that we have finished The Shadow of the Ramlord. At the time of you reading this it is either available below, or soon to be once Moddb activates our mirrors. Thank you all for your support and interest as time has gone on, and sticking by after such a tumultuous development cycle.

It hasn't been easy for any of us to get here, and it wouldn't have happened without the stalwart members who remained. Modding as both a hobby and passion can be taxing on your mind, body, and schedule and I'd like to personally thank each and every team member for giving their all and creating the best custom story we could with the tools, resources and timeframe available to us. I'm proud of our work; and I hope you, the player, will enjoy the atmosphere and story we've cultivated.

Our custom story is very much directed towards the player who enjoys a deliberate pace, absorbing the narrative and level design clues, and feeling immersed in a story-first experience. Ramlord is very much for those who found things to like from Machine for Pigs or SOMA, even though the style and delivery is very unique to Dark Craft Studios, being familiar to any who have played my catalog of Lovecraftian mods for Crysis before this.

* A very special PS. We were hoping to use composition by my good friend Jarod D'Camp for the entirety of the release in a special, custom OST. However it simply never managed to come to fruition due to conflicting time tables. We had to plug in vanilla Amnesia music, and I know that will sour some of you. I just want you to know that wasn't the original design intention.

First time looking at this mod?


Shadow of the Ramlord is a Lovecraftian, story-first, narrative driven custom story that foregoes the tried and true game mechanics done by a million other wonderful custom stories, and instead focuses on driving home atmosphere, immersion, narrative and polish. I recommend playing with headphones on, your full focus on the story, and taking your time with everything. Those looking for chases, scares, complex mathematical puzzles or mind-bending monster encounters will not find that here.

Final Announcement


This will be the end of a long road for me. With the release of this project, I am officially retiring from video game/mod design. Dark Craft Studios will have its symbolic doors closed, and I will transition to simply writing. It has been the throughline for all of my projects from the very first in 2009 to the final, today, in 2019. I'm hoping to hone my craft and take serious interest in professionally developing that hobby into something tangible for me. Unfortunately that means leaving the world of video games behind as a creative mind. With that said, I hope you all enjoy The Shadow of the Ramlord as the swansong for Dark Craft Studios. It has been nearly a decade spent with all of you in some way, and it will take me time to reflect and absorb that chapter turn.


SOTR - Teaser Trailer #1 - Mod DB


Downloads


Manual Install

Shadow of the Ramlord - Manual


Automatic Installer

Shadow of the Ramlord - Installer


Support

I will be watching closely to see what kind of feedback and critique we pull as we head into the first month or two of release. In some capacity I will release hotfixes or patches for issues that crop up. As far as new maps, expansions, sequels, or any brand new content of that sort -- I'm afraid the answer is no to that. We did as much as we could to make this release candidate as stable as possible. Given the size of our creative talent (VA team/composer/programmers) it will be impossible to convince everyone to come back for new content anyway, as we've all moved on our separate creative ways.

Thank you all again for everything, and for the years of playing my stories.



Comments
Argoon
Argoon

Congrats on the release and petty that game development left a bad impression on you but I certainly comprehend why.

About the custom story, from what I could play in the meantime, unfortunately it is having some problems, at least on my side, one is performance, my PC plays Amnesia and Soma very well, AMD Ryzen 7 1800X 8c/16t, 16GB of RAM and GPU, AMD RX 570 with 8GB of VRAM, is a relatively powerful PC but is having obvious slowdowns on your custom story.

Another is the voice overs (that are fantastic btw), they cut off abruptly sometimes, I say this because once and again, when you change scenes, I see a subtitle but hear no voice over and also sometimes it only says half of what is written on the subtitles.

Taken out the problems above, Imo is very well constructed Amnesia story, with very good voice acting, rooms that make sense, apart perhaps from the protagonist bedroom, that is very strange to me but that is perhaps because i've never seen one like that, outdoors that look good (apart from some trees and plants, where the flat planes that make them up, are very very obvious).

Need to finish the story to give a better opinion about it but what i've seen so far is good.

Good luck on your future plans and all the success on your writing endeavors.

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C-zom Author
C-zom

Your computer is well above the development staff, funny enough, and we targeted a stable 50fps at least. I know I recorded at least that much, plus it was smooth, on my i5 6600, RX 480 and 8GB RAM. Do you have vsync on? I know it actually makes the fps worse in Amnesia.

As for the voice acting lines, that's also a curious issue that simply never popped up in our testing -- which was extensive. If more users report that error I'll go in depth to finding a cause/solution. Are you on windows?

Thank you man, I know you've played I think all of my mods. I hope this one doesn't disappoint despite the troubles you've been having.

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Spelos
Spelos

Actually, cutting of voice lines did happen on Linux.
But again, that's a port issue and we can't do anything about it.

Major slowdown for amnesia is SSAO and should be disabled.

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Argoon
Argoon

Hello yes i'm on windows and I've played your Crysis mods yes, don't worry I liked them despite the quirks and this one i'm sure will be the same. :)

I'm also having problems in the Dark Mod and that is a OpenGL game like Amnesia, so it could be connected, seems there's a OpenGL bug on the new AMD drivers that affect some GPU's and not others. If others don't complain then don't worry.

With vsync off and SSAO off performance did increased significantly but still had parts where big slowdowns were obvious, specially when many lights and objects are in view at the same time. Tried to play Amnesia just to see if was me recalling wrong and with everything at max, including SSAO and vsync the game was decidedly faster but I still saw some hiccups on it so SSAO is definitely a variable on this.

Btw i'm not sure but i've read somewhere that is better to run at 30fps's locked or 60fps locked than 50fps even tho is faster than 30, it seems to be about the refresh rate of 60hz screens, if you are not running constantly at 60 fps and you have vsync on, it will fall down to 30fps (even tho the PC has power to run at above 40 or 50) because that is what a 60hz screen prefers, when shifting down, fortunately AMD and Nvidia have a fix for that, is called adaptive sync and you can enabled it on the drivers settings. If your monitor has the option, you can also bring the refresh rate down to 50hz and that will solve many stuttering problems, unfortunately mine is locked at 60hz at 1080p.

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C-zom Author
C-zom

With a front page banner comes front page responsibility --

SOTR is a story-first experience. If you do not feel inclined to digest and experience a dense, vocally driven narration in a walking simulator context, then please steel your expectations before continuing. We've had a lot of misrepresented reviews from people who went in expecting a mod that doesn't exist -- the scares lie in the story, the horrors lie in the visual designs and context, and the message is found if you immerse yourself in the characters and their experiences.

This is a unique, and jarring, custom story and I've been told it's one of a kind (whether that is good, or bad, is subjective.) If you enjoy pointed, Lovecraftian stories with a blend of researched occultism and a very densely written script, this is for you. If you want to jump or engage monsters or experience puzzles, this is not for you.

Enjoy everyone!

Reply Good karma+1 vote
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