Today I want to highlight another kickstarter game to you: Fortis Rex – Rise of the King, a faction-based, army commanding, non-linear RPG from Ancient Realms Studios. The game sounds very interesting to those interested in Mount & Blade and Warrior Kings.
Since Ancient Realms Studios’ original unsuccessful kickstarter campaign in September a lot has changed – for starters the campaign goal has shrunk a considerable bit (this time only needing $7,000), the game itself has has some work done and the team has come out stronger.
To give you a bit of a different article I caught up with Ancient Realms Studios about the game…
Alex: Explain Fortis Rex in 10 words or less!
Ancient Realms Studios: An army-Commanding RPG in a Late-Medieval setting.
Alex: As Fortis Rex has a bit of a “Mount & Blade” kind of feel to it, we can already see how combat is going to take place, so tell me a bit more about the RPG elements of Fortis Rex.
ARS: Fortis Rex has many elements of a traditional RPG, including quest-based gameplay, a drag and drop inventory system, and a stronghold the player can call their own. Players can complete dozens of quests with a non-linear storyline. You can exit out at anytime and seek your own adventures in a fully open game world, where you can go anywhere, anytime.
Alex: You mention that you players can create their own game experience in a non-linear story. Without giving too much away, can you give me an example of how a player can tackle a quest – and how this will affect the world?
ARS: How the player completes quests determines their status in the game world. For example, let’s say you were given a quest to wipe out a particular bandit lair. When you get to the lair the bandits try to talk you into fighting for them, and destroy the villagers who gave you the quest. You have multiple options here: You can destroy the bandits with your army, go back to the village and wipe it out, or simply walk away and refuse to help either one. If you wipe the bandits out, word will get around and you’ll begin to become respected… If you wipe the villagers out, word will also get around and you’ll become despised, but respected by the bandits. If you walk away you can come back at anytime and finish the quest, unless either the villagers or the bandits are wiped out first by the dynamically changing game world.
Alex: Factions: How do factions relate to each other? Does being part of a faction grant any bonuses?
ARS: Some of the factions are at war with each other. The Imperials and the Imperial Rebels have been at it for 400 years, all starting because of a minor disagreement on how the Empire should be run. The Imperial Rebels have a stronghold at Nelson: the Imperials have known about it for years but don’t have the resources to destroy them completely.
Each faction will have their own, unique units, weapons, and strategies that only joining that faction will unlock. The bandits and pirates, though being weaker factions, play a major role in the game early on, as you can join them for massive rewards (mostly looting).
Alex: Traditionalism vs modernism – can we expect more than gunpowder in the game?
ARS: The Traditionalists and Technologists are also at war, each despising the other. I got a lot of inspiration from Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura, so I knew that I wanted to have a slightly steampunk, mostly medieval world, where the player could choose to do good or evil, and choose to support either technology, with it’s guns and explosives, or traditionalism, with its masterful, traditional combat with bows and swords. A player can join one of these factions or the other, and reap the benefits of improved, faction only armor, weapons, and tactics, but must stand the difficulties of getting negative dialogue when conversing with an opposing faction. Gunpowder will play a major role in the game, as well as technology of all types (as in Arcanum).
Alex: Wars and fighting – can we expect sieges or war machines in the game?
ARS: There won’t be any war machines in Fortis Rex, but there will be castle sieges. Castle sieges will start with a ladder on a broken piece of the castle wall. You can risk troops to place additional ladders on the walls, to give you an advantage over the enemy.
Alex: Tell me a bit more about the creation of Fortis Rex – what made you come up with the idea? Was this a one-man thing or did you kick around ideas among your team?
ARS: For the most part, these ideas were my own, based on inspiration from other games such as Warrior Kings, Arcanum, and Oblivion. I’ve been working on Fortis Rex for almost four years, for about three and a half years by myself. In the past eight months or so I started looking for a team to help with the creation of Fortis Rex. The team is constantly growing, and we have around 7 team members now. Every now and then we kick around ideas about different stuff.
Alex: Fortis Rex and Kickstarter, what made you go down this route again? Did you consider other options? How do you feel crowdsourcing is affecting your work on the game?
ARS: I looked into several different options, but I would have to say that Kickstarter is by far the best because of the massive number of people that browse Kickstarter. KS has definitely given me more morale to work on the game, as i can get my work out there, and receive feedback while doing it, to constantly improve Fortis Rex.
Alex: Can we expect a persistent online world or is the game single player only?
ARS: I have plans to make Fortis Rex 2 multiplayer, but at this time a rich single-player campaign is the focus of my team and I’s efforts.
Alex: Steam Greenlight? DRM? How are you planning to distribute the game?
ARS: We will be distributing the game on multiple sites, all DRM free. We really don’t like DRM and believe it frustrates the player into not wanting to play the game.
Alex: Thank you very much for your time today!
If you would like to know more about Fortis Rex and back the project, then please visit the link below: