Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Character Assasination

Some of the gamers out there may remember an ambitious "roguelike" game called Slaves to Armok: God of Blood, developed by Tarn Adams from 2000 to 2005.

In 2002 he started working on a sequel, Slaves to Armok: God of Blood Chapter II: Dwarf Fortress, and has worked exclusively on it since 2006. In the past eight years Dwarf Fortress has acquired impressive depth and list of features while still officially remaining in alpha stage. The game has also attracted a number of dedicated followers, exited at the prospect that it will "Drag the world out of the Dark age of Gaming kicking and screaming!"

Now it seems some Goon has decided to create a clone of Dwarf Fortress, called "Goblin Camp", in a move which has been perceived as a personal attack on Mr. Adams.

Goblin Camp is, not surprisingly, quite similar to Dwarf Fortress, as this screenshot demonstrates:

This picture shows a very early camp with a general stockpile for goods, a small farm for growing Bloodberries, a small workshop with an orc working in it, and a protective fence. There's not much else to the game yet, and it is this general dearth of features and lack of polish in a game in beta stage (remember, DF is still in alpha after eight years!) that has led some commentators to already write the game off.

Though Goblin Camp is ultimately developed by some Goon, he has opened the source code, and accepts additions and improvements from volunteer contributors. So far he has had programmers suggesting rewriting the whole thing, preferably in some other programming language, while some other suggestions for features are, well... see for yourself.

Here we see a more advanced camp with more stockpiles, more extensive fence, a bakery and a brewery. Bakery turns berries into pies, and brewery turns berries into wine.

Notice the brown '~' and '#' symbols near the left edge of the picture. They represent different depths of pools of filth; a great example of features internet forums can collectively come up with!

After your camp has reached this state, there's very little to do yet but watch your goblins harvesting berries and your orcs defeating the occasional attack by hostile animals.

Speaking of hostile animals: because, so far, animals can open doors, you have to come up with creative ways to protect your camp from attacks, like this maze entrance:

There's really not much else to say about the game or the Goon behind it. If you feel like wasting a few minutes of your time, here's the official website of Goblin Camp.

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