Darklands is a new God-type game currently under development for RISC OS.
The game is aiming to be something like an Acorn version of
Civilisation, putting you in charge of humanity from its earliest
conception right through until medieval times, featuring
- Civilisation building
- Technological advances
- Resource gathering / using
- Army building
- Large battles
I've just got hold of a development demo version of the game. Unfortunately there isn't
actually any game present yet - it's just a scrollable, unanimated landscape without any
final graphics in place. It scrolls smoothly at a resolution of your choice, but that's
about all there is to say so far!
The full current gameworld map looks like the following picture, strange smiley lake included!
The game runs on anything from an ARM3 upwards, although it's hoped that the final
version will be playable on any 32-bit Acorn machine. It's not quite clear just how advanced
the actual core game engine is yet, however! I'd guess that if much was written that it would
be visible in the demo, so I wouldn't hold your breath for a release.
The game's due to retail at £20 on CD (or multiple floppies), and will come complete with a level editor and
random map generation, as well as network and internet multiplayer support.
Among the promised game features there will be the option to play
set-piece battles from throughout time, and as time passes the range of items
available for construction increases. From the late stone age onwards you can
construct the farm building shown here, for example.
The author is aiming to make the game run playably fast on all RISC OS machines
whilst supporting the better capabilities of later machines. Although the 'standard' resolution of the game is 640 by 480, it will run in 400 by 300 on ARM2 machines at a good speed - and it can run at much higher resolutions if you want, too.
The above screenshot shows an early development screenshot, but apparently
the current version now has greatly improved graphics. Darklands features real-time gameplay with both civilisation building and resource harvesting - plus large battles! Music is provided via an integrated software MIDI player.
The game is due to retail at somewhere around the £15 to £20 mark.
...this page last updated: 9/4/01...
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