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Open World Fantasy RPG Balrum Seeking A Kickstart
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Balcony Team recently emailed us about its Kickstarter campaign to gain $50,000 for the development of Balrum. Describe as an open world fantasy RPG with building, farming and crafting, the game is planned for release on Mac, Windows, and Linux based PCs.

The Story
Now that Nasrus revealed his plot, the kings of Balrum sent their armies to the borders of the unknown lands captured by Nasrus. The power of the undead armies had been greatly underestimated. No one survived the battles. Without the armies of the kings, chaos has overcome Balrum. Large bandit clans formed and started to live by their own rules. Soon the kings of Balrum had fallen. Two little villages stood up against the new bandit rulers and decided that the only way they will survive is if they hide in the Dark Woods. No one dare enter the Dark Woods and this is what the villagers took advantage of. A horrible deal has been made, but the villagers are safe for now. The undead hordes of Nasrus are still waiting at the borders, but they can march into the heart of Balrum anytime their lord commands and there is no one to stop them. The people wonder why the good gods of Balrum, Adacus and Eogor don’t seem to be interested in the events that took place.

The World
The world is realtime in Balrum. This means that you will see NPCs and animals living their daily lifes. The living world is one of the most important feature for us, an amount of the kickstarter funds will go into creating animations and AIs (different daily life AI for each NPC) for the NPCs that live in the world. For example: You will see the blacksmith create a weapon, or NPCs will sit down at home and eat, sleep, talk, or the woodcutter will actually go and chop down trees. Animals live their lifes as well, they eat, sleep, even hunt each other. We love to find lots of things to use in our favourite games. So we tried our best to make everything that looks to be useable in the world, useable. You will find vast amount of herbs and materials in Balrum. For your home you will need huge amounts of materials that is why you can chop down trees and mine stone. The world is hand made. Nothing is randomly generated. Every chest you find will have loot that was placed by hand. But don’t gather everything hastily, because the mushroom that you want to pick up may be more powerful the next day. Special mushrooms and other special herbs can level up in Balrum. Small details are important for us for example if it starts to rain, small pools of rain will appear and who knows, you might find something in those little pools! There are lots of dungeons to explore in the world of Balrum, some of them are multiple levels deep. Every dungeon will have a master who is the boss of the given dungeon. These dungeon masters will drop carefully selected loot so that you will feel that beating the dungeon was really worth it. We are creating a game that is aimed at mature players.

Storytelling is really important for us. When you reach chapter 2 in the game, (we will have 5 chapters in the final game) you will be able to choose from 3 guilds to join. Each guild will have its own storyline that will eventually lead you to the outcome of the game. There are dozens of side quests that you can complete in the game. We don't like linear quests so we try our best to create little stories that have multiple ways of completing them. Through quests your character will develop, NPCs will act differently if you help them or if you are kind to them. New dialog options will appear if you earn the trust of the given NPC.

You can build your own home in Balrum. In fact, in chapter 1 you will be asked by your grandfather to build a new home for the two of you because something terrible happened to your old home and it became uninhabitable. In the following chapters you will leave home and you will be able to choose to build a home for youself that is yours only, or not, and live a true adventurer life. There are benefits of building a house:

  • NPCs can visit you at home and sometimes offer quests or leave notes!
  • If you sleep at home you will get buffs that boost your abilities for a certain amont of time.
  • Your farm will be close to your house so essentially the house can act as storage space for your equipment and your farm!
  • If you build the crafting “tables” in (or near) your home you can craft anything at home!
You can upgrade your house with new furniture or maybe you find a nice trophy or hide that fits in your home nicely , and you can redesign your house anytime.

There are NPCs around the world who can teach you how to make weapons, or how to brew all kinds of potions, but you can also make your own custom items. You can choose the materials that you would like to use and the item type, after that the game will tell you about your soon to be made item, how powerful it is(various stats of it). You can choose the icon for your item but the icon that you like will only be selectable if the item that you put together meets the icons quality level.

To survive you must eat. You can find food in the world or even buy food, but the best is to cultivate your farm! You can place down your fields near your home and start growing your crops. Every plant needs a different amount of time to grow. You can speed up the process with taking care of your fields, making sure that they are hydrated and fertile if you are lucky it will rain and that helps a lot too! You also have to protect your farm from large creatures that might trample your fields. A sturdy fence would most certainly help!

You can hunt prey in Balrum. Sneak up or attack your prey from afar. Try to shoot a deer with your trusty bow, but if you miss, the deer will most certainly try to run away from you. If you succesfully kill your prey and you know how to skin animals properly, you will be able to process the prey fully. Place down traps and you might get lucky and capture smaller animals without the need of pursuing them.

Combat in Balrum is turn based. (but only combat, the world is realtime) The player will have a large selection of spells and abilities at his or her disposal. (currently 65 but we are aiming for 100+) We worked hard to create spells and abilities that have truly different gameplay mechanics.

Skills are learned from masters. For example: if you want to skin animals you have to know how to. Skills will have different levels, you can achieve new levels in the given skill through using the skill, and if you reach a certain sublevel of the skill you need to learn the next level from a teacher.

Line of sight is affected by light in Balrum. So if you hide in the shadows you will be harder to spot. Also if you have a few water arrows in your inventory you can disable far away torches by shooting them. There are a number of abilities that can only be used while in stealth. For example: Knock Down, Rapid Strike. Since quite a few gameplay mechanics are affected by light in Balrum, we thought that sound should have an affect too! So now if you wear heavy armor your footsteps can be heard more easily than if you were wearing leather. Or if you make lots of noise creating a camp, or crafting something, wildlife might get aware of you! Maybe you want to create noise on purpose!

Balrum Kickstarter
Balcony Team


 

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