Ah cheers. The comments above about an alternative setting made me ask.I had not seen David's comment in the other thread. Will the Diedne book and World Guide (which I assume will be another Ars 5th book?) be available separately through Atlas? (and up to 99 subscribers now). If I had not already pledged i would have been the hundredth, so c'mon, some one else sign up now! :slight_smile:

cj x

101 now. I've increased my pledge cos I really want to see this succeed :slight_smile: Is it set in the history of the Heirs to Merlin setting, or can we not know that at this time?

cj x

In my experience, chances are if it works for tablet it can probably be engineered to work for the more modern generation of smartphones, too. Interface changes would be required, but if it's being developed for iOS or Android then tablet vs. phone is primarily an issue of screen resolution.

Being about to submit my first own-developed mobile game to Google, I'm now fairly familiar with the phone vs. tablet requirements. :slight_smile:

While this is probably buried under NDA, I'd be curious to know if they're developing the entire thing from the ground up or using a toolset such as Torque or Unity or similar. Some of those third-party toolsets can really make cross-platform development a breeze, and they're not that expensive when you compare them to the coder time it takes to implement the same features internally.

Anyway - this is for the Black Chicken guys to decide - they've already released a couple of games, they know what they're doing. I'm just being a sticky-beak. :smiley:

So how does this game expect to actually run? I mean is it a FPS? (joke)

How does a computer game while still using 5th edition rules?

Can you point in the direction of a computer game that might give us an idea of what it might be like?

Civ, X-com, anything like that?

Black Chicken Studios has produced a couple of games already. Years of Conquest will be the same basic format.

Right. I would like the world book to be a canonical "Stonehenge 1000" sourcebook for Ars Magica Fifth Edition if possible, but it might not be possible.

Computer games and table top games are different media, and there are different problems for each. Here's a concrete example that's already come up.

In the computer game, Longevity Rituals will not work for unGifted characters. If they did, then virtually every character who was alive at the beginning of the game would have to be taken into account in every storyline, right to the end of the century. There would be no guarantee that anyone would die. No problem for a tabletop game, but for the computer game it creates a huge amount of extra work, much of which will never be used, because most unGifted characters won't be given a Longevity Ritual.

So, it will become part of Ars Magica canon that Longevity Rituals for the unGifted were a 12th (or maybe late 11th, in Thebes) century Hermetic breakthrough. I'm pretty sure we can actually do this; I don't think we've said anything that contradicts it. However, similar things might come up that can't be accommodated that easily, and that might mean that the setting for the computer game can't be, quite, the canonical setting for the tabletop game. We'll be working to keep things as close together as possible, but at this point we can't make firm commitments that we will be able to keep the computer game entirely within tabletop canon. Fingers crossed...

Of course, even if it is, it's set 220 years earlier, so it's still an alternative setting of sorts.

The Diedne book is different. First, a fair bit of it will be for 1220, and thus will not affect the computer game. Second, the magical secrets of the Diedne will be properly integrated into Ars Magica canon, because failing to do so would be too much of a break from the tabletop game. (Yes, of course they will have magical secrets.) I don't plan to describe the plans of the Diedne leadership, or take sides in the Schism War, in the book. So, we can promise that this book will be canonical.

This sums up my impression when I talked to Larry as well. I'm really looking forward to seeing how this develops. (Although I may need to find a Windows laptop from somewhere.)

I'm on board now as well. THis sounds really fascinating.

Well, I dropped the guys a line and was pleasantly surprised to get a reply within an hour, despite it being some ungodly hour of the morning over in CA. :slight_smile:

I think the Black Chicken format is a very sensible approach to take for an Ars Magica game. The nice thing about their games structure is it leaves enough to the imagination to 'paper over' the cracks that you just couldn't do with a third-person-Skyrim kind of game.

I expect the game won't be able to stick 100% to the 5th edition rules. Some things will have to change purely from a workload point of view (longevity potion example above), while other things will have to be marked as purely outside of scope; I will be extremely surprised if the game supports ReTe-ing your covenant to make it fly then going in search of the New World.

I plan to pledge once I've decided how much.

This despite being almost certain I don't hae a computer new enough to run it...

Ah good point. Wonder what spec is required. I don't play computer games apart from King of Dragon Pass, and I'm not even sure how to check, but I have had this machine about ... well seven or eight years I think. I'll have a look at my PC.
Processor x86 Family 6 Model 14 Stepping 8 GenuineIntel ~1728 Mhz : Total Physical Memory 1,024.00 MB : Available Physical Memory 287.02 MB Total Virtual Memory 2 GB
I suspect this means my computer dates from the Age of the Founders, and will never run anything!It's better than my first computer, which had 3.5k memory, but still a way off modern. Are the specs for the game listed anywhere?

cj x

I'd guess they'd be at or above those of their previous game...but that's just a guess.

In terms of comparison to other video games: King of Dragon Pass is certainly one that comes to mind, but I have an idea in my mind that there way also be some similarities to other turn-based games that have a sort of sweeping historical scope -- ones I've played addictively over the years like Imperialism II and Master of Orion II.

In fact, thinking of this makes me think I should fish out KODP and see if I can get it running on my MacBook Pro, maybe via SheepShaver (which is how I still use this thing to play Imperialism II).

I don't know what the system requirements will be, so this is speculation, but my guess is that it won't take an enormous graphics card because it won't have a lot of 3D rendering and motion graphics (unless something amazing happens that leads to stretch goals). Given that you don't need to maintain a lot of real-time responsiveness (like a shooter game), an old/slow processor might be OK, just longer for the computer to react between turns. I could see memory being an issue, depending on how much is hogged by your operating system and other programs being open.

For comparison, Black Chicken's latest game, Scheherazade, has these requirements:

Windows 7 / Vista / XP
1 GHz Processor (2 GHz Recommended)
2 GB Available System Memory
1 GB Available Hard Disk Space
Best on Resolutions higher than 800x600

Note that they don't even mention graphics card, unlike many PC games. You could play it with a lot of 10-year-old computer systems, though they may require maxed-out RAM.

The Maxed-Out Ram (MuAn 20)

  • as Beast of Outlandish Size, but +1 magnitude to render the ram as large as a warhorse

Bwahahaha! :smiley:

That's not a ram.

This is a ram!

KoDP is a great model to use. Bringing in a more graphical turn-based combat system (MoO2) might be interesting, but it also would probably represent a monster amount of work.

5% funded in the first day! You're all great, thank you.

$275,153 to go...

For questions about the computer-y aspects of the game, Black Chicken recommend that you use their forums, so that they don't miss anything.

They should have a rather clearer idea of system requirements than we do, but obviously they won't be absolutely sure yet; the game hasn't been written.

From what I can find, i think you have a Pentium M 740 from 2005(Dothan model). It´s a quite decent CPU based on the preceeding Pentium III(Katmai/Coppermine/Tualatin) architechture because even Intel wasn´t stupid enough to try to use the disaster that was the Pentium IV where energy efficiency was needed(or ANY efficiency).

It´s biggest downside today is probably that it is merely a singlecore cpu since multithreading has now become the norm. It´s upside might be said that it was such a success that when the P4 finally dug itself into an early ( well deserved ) grave, the Core2 that superceeded it was based on the Pentium M structure, and even with the Nehalem architechture changes of 2008, current Intel mainline cpu:s are still essentially based on that same architechture.

Virtual memory is how much room the operative system is using on your HDD as a swap file, it´s mostly irrelevant as long as it exists(some software really hate it when you turn it off). If it´s not already done, a small performance gain can be had from setting a static minimal size to the Virtual memory, because the slowest part of Windows using it tends to be when it "dynamically" resizes it.

And if you´re not planning on getting a new computer anytime soon, it might be a good idea to consider upgrading to 2GB RAM("Physical Memory"). Especially if the "Available Physical Memory" is what you have with only "light" use of the system. 287MB is really not much with how wasteful a lot of todays software has become.

(and if you DO consider getting a new system instead, when choosing RAM, go for 8GB, as currently used DDR3 RAM is dirt cheap and 8GB is the point where you no longer get noticeable advantages of getting more. Oh, and avoid Windows 8 like the plague, MS seems intent on making Windows ME loose it´s distinction as the worst version of Windows ever. )

Oh, someone else actually playing Imperialism 2! Rare nowadays.

I'd heard bad things about 8, but that bad? Ouch!