Raventhorne released!

Raventhorne, the first game of the Summer Uprising, has been approved and is ready for download! You can download the game, or a trial version, from here: http://bit.ly/pCBNxa

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  • HomiSite says:

    Bought it. Quick Impressions:
    – Nice graphics (although the – good – animations are of a, eh, cheap technique ;-).
    – The fighting system seems overall quite responsive, so you can block fast and hit tactically (you have to get used to the short break after a dash move. And it would be cool, if weapon mode change input would be queued: You make a combo, hit RB and after the combo, the stance should change).
    – With flying enemies or many on screen it seems to get quite confusing and also hard (my char is level 10 now)!
    – I am curious how exciting leveling up the char is; seems you have more or less all skills from the start.
    – An explanation of the magic spells within e.g. help menu would be nice. And I don’t know if the spells are mapped in a logic way: Attack buttons are X and Y, but attack spells X and B, aren’t they?

  • Soy1Bonus says:

    The levelling up system is more about being more proficient at certain things (and also the typical stuff like more health and stamina).

    For example, using the offensive stance on lower levels is possible but you can’t miss a hit, because it will cost you a lot of stamina. So most skills are unlocked at start but are a bit risky to use, and become more easy to use later on.

    We did that so that you could use everything if you wanted (we didn’t like to limit anything if you’re a good player) but allowed us to gradually change the gameplay style. Of course, you can use the deffensive stance all the game, but it will be boring so we wanted the player to discover what the game has to offer.

    About the spell buttons, there are two ways of thinking about it. One is what you say, make the spells relate to the function of the button. The other one is to make the spell relate to the color of the button. We used that because it seemed easier to remember. Lightning=blue, Attack=red, Stamina=yellow, Health=green. It also matches the color of the interface bars.

    It’s the first time we develop a game of this genre so it was a really BIG challenge for us. We also wanted to finish everything in one month (because it’s a limit we try to use for all of our games) so we tried to keep the game simple and as polished as we could but, as always, things can be improved.

    Basically, when you find a hard situation, blocking is the key. The game relies a lot on the stamina bar, so button mashing won’t work. My usual choice is to use offensive stance and Attack Spell and block a lot. Also blocking at the right time increases stamina regeneration (a yellow aura surrounds the player).

    The problem of queueing the stance is the it could lead to some exploits of the combat system. We wanted the player to be vulnerable when changing stances, because you usually don’t need to change it that much on a fight, depending on the enemies.

  • HomiSite says:

    Thanks for your detailed reply! Your explanation/logic of the magic spells is good and helped me remeber what is what (because as said no info about it ingame after tutorial). I found myself never using stamina boost, most the time I call lightning and at the end I discovered the life boost which helped much to survive some battles. I didn’t use the attack boost because then I have to be aggressive which, as you said, can be get quite dangerous.

    Anway, to the difficulty: Although it can get a bit confusing with many enemies, that’s together with dash and block (which works regardless from where the enemy attacks) not my problem. But the flying and shooting enemies are! There were some encounters where I was immediately under heaviest fire while also attacked on the ground. I think the flying enemies have a bit too much hitpoints! And you can’t really do something against them, when they are high in the air… In such situations I was forced to use light or medium stance to block, ergo I have to hit enemies a lot. In fights with fewer ground enemies, I later used heavy stance: One hit, fast block – there the game is very responsive :-)!

    I was in chapter 4 (level 9/10), I think, when I wrote of hard battles above. In the end, I had to grind 3 or 4 level in that chapter to survive these battles. BTW grinding: I think I like the system where you begin at level start after death, but you keep your level and are able to recollect the crystals again.

    Okay, and then… the game was over!? I know it’s only 240 points, but what’s the playtime – max. 2h incl. grinding (I was almost level 20 at the end)? I see no replay motivation (like e.g. awards) and the story isn’t even finished! I was a bit dissapointed that it’s THAT short. It seems to become an episodic game, although I don’t know if it’s able to keep your interest up without new gameplay elements.

    As a first timer in the, eh, action platformer genre, it’s still a good game with a noverall good working fighting system and a nice presentation. But it’s too short for the price (in perspective of the XBLIG prices).

    PS: Why are there four save slots?

  • Soy1Bonus says:

    There are 4 slots in case you want other people to play it using your profile (sometimes it’s a chore to change profiles just to play a game).

    About the price, we can’t put it cheaper because there is a file limitation on the Xbox LIVE Indie Games section, so if your game is bigger, there is a minimum price you have to set (in this case 240 points).

    Right now we’re working on the first patch that will correct some of the gameplay issues people is having.

  • Alexis Acosta says:

    Raven Thorne could have been an arcade title,it’s good enough. Remember milkstone guys,the key to replay value is multiplayer mode,allow multiplayer co-op and multiplayer death match…if possible.