Realms Beyond – A classic turn-based fantasy RPG

crpg tagged posts

Source of Inspiration #3: Wizardry

Whenever the conversation touches upon old-school computer roleplaying games, the subject turns to just how difficult those games were. With that in mind, I think it is time to talk about Wizardry, the legendary RPG series developed by Sir-Tech. THOSE games were hard to beat! Seriously hard! Similarly to the Ultima games, most of our team’s first contact was not with the first Wizardry game, but rather with later entries in the series, typically, starting with Wizardry IV: The Return of Werdna.

Bane of the Cosmic ForgeIt may sound strange, but the very first thing that comes to mind when remembering Wizardry IV is its copy protection. The game allowed you to play through the entire first dungeon but then would ask you for a series of digits from a list that was included in the box...

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Sound Design #1: Details are everything

To fork into some different territory and cover more aspects of Realms Beyond, we have prepared a few blog posts about game design and technology. To start things off, let’s have a look at the sound design.

It’s an obvious thing: Atmosphere is not only a visual thing, and it’s not only created by gameplay. There are many more factors at play, so many, in fact, that it’s hard to even count them. Atmosphere is what you get when you put all the components of a game together and everything fits. Often overlooked, but without a doubt, one of the key elements to create an engaging sense of atmosphere is the sound design. Imagine, if you will, an RPG without driving combat themes, or an epic main theme. It would feel like a movie with the TV muted...

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Our forums are online


Welcome traveller!

This welcoming place is the official forum of Realms Beyond and it is intended for helpful, entertaining and constructive discussions about the game itself, as well as some other topics related to roleplaying and/or fantasy games. To prevent total anarchy, disorientation and, of course, harassment, please keep to the following guidelines:

  • When posting to a thread, pay attention to the conversation and try to remain on topic
  • If you are looking for potential answers to general questions, please make sure to read the official postings and FAQ first. Use the search function to find solutions to your problem that may exist already. If that didn’t help, find a suitable existing thread to post your question to or start a new one
  • Spamming, obvious trolling, and vicious flaming...
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First Screenshots

In this post, we would like to present you with the first screenshot gallery with images that we have taken directly from the pre-alpha version of the game. We should point out, however, that parts of the engine and visuals are still work in progress.

As you can see, our isometric engine is optimized to display a lot of items on the screen at the same time, without suffering any performance hits. This has been achieved by combining pre-rendered 2D shapes with 3D meshes. By using dynamic real-time lighting on all these elements, the implementation of things, such as different times of day, are easily possible and have become quite important for our world simulation as a whole.

There is another interesting aspect that you may find intriguing...

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Source of Inspiration #2: Ultima IV

Ultima IVChronologically speaking, to say our sources of inspiration begin with the SSI Gold Box games is actually a bit off. It may have something to do with the fact that most of us are not old enough that we actually entered the world of computer RPGs with games that came before Pool of Radiance. But as a matter of fact, by 1988, when the Gold Box series first commenced, Ultima was already on its fifth sequel with Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny.

Ultima IV Start ScreenIn all honesty, most of our team members never actually spent much time playing the original Ultima Trilogy but that’s not altogether detrimental. The one thing the Ultima series is most remembered for is its unique approach to character generation...

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Combat System #1: Turn-based, RTwP and the Open Game License

After all this talk of exploration and adventuring, let’s turn our attention to more exciting things, such as combat, shall we? It’s a truly complex and crucial subject and during the time when Realms Beyond was merely an idea, we bounced around a number of approaches how to implement a tactically deep, but also entertaining, turn-based combat system in the game.

Dragon Age combat

We knew right from the beginning that we wanted a classic, turn-based system. Other options were certainly worth discussing and evaluating, but none ever struck us as ideal. We all played Dragon Age (the first and best part) which had a real-time combat system with a Pause-option. Nobody here felt comfortable with the concept of having a similar combat system in our game.

So why did we choose to go strictly turn-based over...

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