Author Topic: RELEASED: Hearkenwold  (Read 6766 times)

Offline Dorateen

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RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« on: October 17, 2015, 01:32:42 PM »
I am proud to add Hearkenwold to the collection of FRUA modules. It is now available at the rosedragon archive site:

http://frua.rosedragon.org/modulelist/index.php

This is a "French Vanilla" non-hacked module, only importing new art for pictures and monster combat icons.

It is designed for a party of 6 characters, starting at first level and unequipped. If all the content is explored, some of the characters should advance to 5th level.

The structure is one of an open-ended sandbox style. There is a main quest line that can be followed, but then lots of other side content waiting to be discovered. The adventure contains 34 Dungeon Modules.

Have fun!
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline PetrusOctavianus

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2015, 06:50:38 PM »
Looks promising. Will try it after I've completed my current HoMM 2 map.
And then I will review it...

BTW, does it use any particular campaign world?

Offline Dorateen

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2015, 07:53:29 PM »
Hey, that would be great.

It's not using a specific setting. More of a custom D&D world.
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline ProphetSword

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2015, 10:17:42 PM »
I will definitely be putting this on my play list. 
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Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2015, 10:39:32 AM »
I starting playing it yesterday. I thought I'd try somebody elses before I carry on with the gold box games (I've only played CotAB) now that I've done the first part of mine.

Really liking what I've seen so far. I like the openness of it. I've died a few times, which is encouraging, I don't like it too easy. Those four aholes close to the start beat me so I thought right, I'll find some weapons and where I can rest and rain down terrible vengeance upon them. Then they beat the crap out me again. :)

Only slight gripe is that in the outside areas the ground changes textures out in the open, which makes everywhere you look change as well. I'm in the habit of thinking you can't move through trees from playing mine, but the fact that you can in yours means you could use a couple of rows of trees to separate areas with different textured floors.

ps. Did you realise you left one of your characters in the save folder, Dorateen. ;)
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
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Offline Dorateen

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2015, 10:57:33 AM »
Those four aholes close to the start beat me so I thought right, I'll find some weapons and where I can rest and rain down terrible vengeance upon them. Then they beat the crap out me again. :)

Only slight gripe is that in the outside areas the ground changes textures out in the open, which makes everywhere you look change as well. I'm in the habit of thinking you can't move through trees from playing mine, but the fact that you can in yours means you could use a couple of rows of trees to separate areas with different textured floors.

ps. Did you realise you left one of your characters in the save folder, Dorateen. ;)

Hi Platinum Bearer,

Thanks for playing! Yes, that one fight close to the start is definitely meant to be something to come back to and get revenge, ha.

Regarding the backgrounds, and open outdoor areas, you are right and that is going to be a slight annoyance for some players. Unfortunately, it is the way the engine handles the 3D backdrops: when the player occupies a cell they get that view all the way to the horizon, even if the next square features a different backdrop. The issue is addressed in this thread here:

http://ua.reonis.com/index.php?topic=105.0

You will find a mix of Outdoor Stone used between Outdoor Grass in order to represent a paved road running across the land. This is somewhat mitigated in DungeonCraft, which has an option to select "show distant backdrops" and makes the view less disorientating.

As for that save, I thought I read it was advised to keep one save game A in the folder when distributing a new module, but I could be mistaken. Feel free to overwrite that save and character!
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2015, 11:29:45 AM »
As for that save, I thought I read it was advised to keep one save game A in the folder when distributing a new module, but I could be mistaken.
Hmm, I didn't in mine so we'll soon find out.

Edit:
Oh, yes I did. I included my test characters for people with character creation fatigue.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2015, 01:18:42 PM by Platinum Bearer »
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
https://www.mediafire.com/?fs3cfu7niuuqdwt

Wanna learn martial arts?
Check out my brand new channel with new and improved videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHf7lqNU1J2cCmm4BtZC1XA
Tutorials coming very soon.

Remember, true power comes from within.

Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2015, 01:48:12 PM »
I'm liking the dialogue. :) It's quite similar to what I went for.

Another very minor point. A couple of times I got descriptive text on the way in and out of places. I just got it in the monastery garden. If the party is facing a certain direction flag would be good for those.
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
https://www.mediafire.com/?fs3cfu7niuuqdwt

Wanna learn martial arts?
Check out my brand new channel with new and improved videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHf7lqNU1J2cCmm4BtZC1XA
Tutorials coming very soon.

Remember, true power comes from within.

Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2015, 07:25:49 PM »
In the south-east of Khyn LD the fight uses the dirty looking combat texture. I think that's meant to be stone. Also, along that south wall the ground texture is grass, which is a bit out of place so I think that's supposed too be stone as well.
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
https://www.mediafire.com/?fs3cfu7niuuqdwt

Wanna learn martial arts?
Check out my brand new channel with new and improved videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHf7lqNU1J2cCmm4BtZC1XA
Tutorials coming very soon.

Remember, true power comes from within.

Offline Dorateen

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2015, 07:49:25 PM »
In the south-east of Khyn LD the fight uses the dirty looking combat texture. I think that's meant to be stone. Also, along that south wall the ground texture is grass, which is a bit out of place so I think that's supposed too be stone as well.

I probably should have gone with the standard interior rock walls. But it is a wooden house, so it didn't feel right to me. I used that adobe texture, intending just to differentiate it a little, and also because the occupants come from a more arid desert region. Maybe they decorated the inside of their house that way!

The grass along the south wall was also intentional. I wanted to put trees there, but I ran out of wall slots between the marble, wood, and brick. Khyn is a strange place, you've got grass and trees in other districts alongside marble lined stone paths. Part of the aesthetic I was trying to evoke.
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2015, 08:06:35 PM »
I probably should have gone with the standard interior rock walls. But it is a wooden house, so it didn't feel right to me. I used that adobe texture, intending just to differentiate it a little, and also because the occupants come from a more arid desert region. Maybe they decorated the inside of their house that way!
Ah. You can't really win with that one because of the wooden house. I'd suggest a dirt floor for the house to make it fit the combat texture better. It's a pity you can't design the combat area so it can be mixed. I shouldn't moan, UA is a lovely program.

The grass along the south wall was also intentional. I wanted to put trees there, but I ran out of wall slots between the marble, wood, and brick. Khyn is a strange place, you've got grass and trees in other districts alongside marble lined stone paths. Part of the aesthetic I was trying to evoke.
It's just that changing of the ground texture in front of you thing again that makes it seem wrong.
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
https://www.mediafire.com/?fs3cfu7niuuqdwt

Wanna learn martial arts?
Check out my brand new channel with new and improved videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHf7lqNU1J2cCmm4BtZC1XA
Tutorials coming very soon.

Remember, true power comes from within.

Offline Platinum Bearer

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2015, 03:16:12 PM »
There's house in Khyn LD with no roof. It's a posh type so that might be an error.

In that fight at the SW of Khyn LD the one who casts mirror image seems to be immune to it, it didn't work in the three attempt I had at that fight before giving up. That's two groups of four aholes that I owe. :)

I found the dark cave but couldn't go in even though I have a dwarf (infravision). This might not be a bug (just making sure), maybe they all need to be able to see so I need to find some touches or something.
Part one of Call Of Destiny:
https://www.mediafire.com/?fs3cfu7niuuqdwt

Wanna learn martial arts?
Check out my brand new channel with new and improved videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHf7lqNU1J2cCmm4BtZC1XA
Tutorials coming very soon.

Remember, true power comes from within.

Offline Dorateen

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2015, 05:02:57 PM »
There's house in Khyn LD with no roof...

In that fight at the SW of Khyn LD the one who casts mirror image seems to be immune to it...

I found the dark cave but couldn't go in...

Good catch on the house. I'm making a list of things like this to touch up.

It sounds like the mage is resisting his own mirror image. That's pretty funny. As you noted, that fight is meant to be a tough encounter, one you will have to return to later.

You need an item to enter the dark cave. It seems like you are on the right track, so keep looking around. If you would like any specific answers, just let me know.
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline PetrusOctavianus

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2015, 07:07:13 PM »
I've played quite a bit now, so here's my first impressions.

When I saw the module has 34 dungeon levels, but characters only end up lvl 4-5 I got a bit apprehensive. One of my pet peeves with user made content is making the map/module too large and not have enough content in it. I've seen it often with Heroes of Might&Magic maps, and occasionally with FRUA modules.

And I must say this partly applies to this module. The content is of high quality, but it should have been condensed into fewer dungeons. "Lawn mowing" the outdoors areas to find the encounters is not very fun, and is not good role playing either, but I feel I'm forced to do it in order not to miss vital things.
It is made worse by all the trees being traversable. It would have been better to make those that look impassable to be impassable, and create some mazes and/or paths instead, and perhaps to use Zones to trigger events, to prevent the "lawn mowing".

Also, too many events have several choices that lead to the excact same result. For example the little band of thieves in area B3. No matter what you do the results are the same; party is surprised. My party smelled an ambush, but no matter what they did they got surprised. Would have been nice if "You are all under arrest!" at least would make them laugh long enough to lose initiative.

What I like about this module is that it's definitely not Monty Haul, not so far at least. Even a suit of Chain Mail is a major treasure. Which reminds me...for some reason Paladins and Rangers can't use Leather Armour, so maybe throw in another Ring Mail at the armoury?

There's lots of NPCs and side quests to keep track of, which is a good thing.

Bottom line so far: good content, but should be concentrated to a smaller area.

Also, nice to see Iron Maiden inspiring a FRUA module. Revelations is one of my absolute favourite Maiden songs.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2015, 07:10:54 PM by PetrusOctavianus »

Offline Dorateen

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Re: RELEASED: Hearkenwold
« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2015, 09:05:34 PM »
I've played quite a bit now, so here's my first impressions.

Thank you for the feedback, Octavianus! I hear you about the way content is spread out across the maps. I wanted to go for a Might & Magic type exploration vibe, but the content density is not there to match. On the other hand, some of those wilderness areas are going to feel like the more empty maps in Baldur's Gate. Not a good thing, I know. I did want to avoid "forest corridors", which is why the trees are passable. In hindsight, I think I can tweak that a little while keeping the openness.

I included one set of Ringmail in the armory exactly because of paladins not being able to wear leather. Hadn't considered Rangers facing the same restriction. I'll add a second set.

Funny story about the Revelations lyrics... I originally gave those lines to that character as a placeholder, knowing she needed something cryptic to say. Then in further consideration, I realized the words actually fit the background story of this adventure. So I left as it is!

Thanks again for playing, it will help me to improve the overall campaign.
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold