Elandor Chronicles is a game reminiscent of the Super Nintendo generation of video games. It aims to make significant changes to the ORPG scene, incorporating new features and technology, while retaining nostalgic gameplay from some of the most popular titles in video game history.
From the beginning, I’ve wanted to recreate game elements and features reminiscent of the golden age of gaming, inspired from famous titles such as Final Fantasy series, Legend of Zelda series, and a handful of others. I wanted to revive what was lost, or is otherwise a dying breed in today’s gaming world. Elements such as 16x16px tilesets, MIDI soundtracks, 8 bit sound effects, and a world presented with both retro and fantastic themes and feels.
I wanted to immerse the players in a unique world that doesn’t feel cliched, overdone or generic. I didn’t want to limit the player’s game-play and possibilities to his level, restricting him to specific zones, areas and dungeons until he musters up the experience to unravel only a handful of new content, but instead give them the freedom to explore and ponder wherever they wish. I wanted a world where a new player could travel between many cities, towns and landmarks, without being quickly felled by monsters in an area that otherwise should be left for higher level players. Elandor will eventually be huge, and I will include secrets and an incredibly diverse amount of areas that a single player may never see all of.
The game will contain a fine combination of realism, fantasy and simplicity; roads between cities will be long, areas will be huge and open, and monsters won’t be swarming every road between every village. The world won’t be linear scaled, as such as you move further away from the starting village, things won’t always necessarily be harder. When providing new content and updates, I won’t just add new content for higher level players. Emphasis will be on adventure, social interaction and other elements, as so that ‘leveling’ isn’t the primary task in game. Player’s shouldn’t feel that in order to enjoy and prevail in the game, they should grind for experience, and raid dungeons for loot.
To build a community, I will be heavily focusing on aspects to encourage players to role-play, socialize, party together and travel together, and otherwise build themselves a social stature. We want players to crave mystery and adventure, and to be rewarded for it. When updating the world with new areas, we might often design some new secret areas for pre-existing zones, however won’t reveal them so players will be encouraged to adventure and keep an eye out for changing content.
After all, Elandor Chronicles will be a role-playing game. Too many MMORPGs focus on completive play. I want to change what’s important in an online RPG, I want to put the role-playing back into the genre, and create a world which is more than just combat and quests.
And of course, accompanying the immersive gameplay will be completely original and high quality music and graphics, appropriate and reminiscent of the golden age of gaming.
- The world is not fantasy-driven. Magic is rare, and often feared. The arcane arts is fathomed by few, and trained by fewer. Magic artifacts are rare, and civilizations do not have enchanted weapons, portals, or magical devices.
- The world is not linear or balanced. Adventurers are not limited in any way; roads between all cities in the entire continent may or may not be safe. Dangerous encounters do not necessarily get more powerful in each subsequent province. Although adventurers will be challenged as they generally progress, not every landmass is crawling with increasingly difficult creature and critter.
- The world isn’t as dangerous as you might think. Every single online game is swarming with unfathomable amounts of monsters and difficulties. For once, Elandor Chronicles introduces a world not overrun by demons, or at the brink of invasion or war. There are safer zones and wilds, and most roads between towns and cities are safe, even for the newest and weakest players.
- The world is not complicated and full of story, rumor and lore. There is no history for the king’s castle and any previous wars or fights for the throne. There is no learning curve or names and story to remember. NPCs won’t present you with rich dialogue, or give you seemingly complicated quests with a lot of backstory.
- Wolves, bears and rats do not exist. The world is unfamiliar. Every creature and critter will be original, and have their own tactics, weakness and defenses. There may be forests of giant mushrooms, rivers of fire, or lakes with underground civilizations.
- Currency is rare. An adventurer won’t return to town hoarding thousands of coins and dozens of new items. Shops don’t have many powerful or overly fancy items and weapons for wealthy and strapping adventurers. And money isn’t found on and under everything in the environment. No more picking up gold coins or swords after slaying a wolf.
- There won’t be a recorded quest log or sub-story line. Adventurers can perform side quests for townsfolk; however their needs will be simple. Rewards for such tasks could range from additional helpful items, money, or unlocking or opening something. In most mmo’s, every player is tasked with quests which logically are unreasonable. Every player in the game won’t be able to retrieve a quest to obtain a special treasure from a dungeon. Instead, these ‘treasures’ in dungeons can be brought back to any major city and presented to a ‘collector’ for payment.
- Adventurers won’t find and fill up their inventory with all manner of items. There will be very few enchanted items or weapons in the game. There won’t be randomly generated treasure or magical swords such as ‘brawling great sword of the demon’. Instead, each item you find will have a specific use, and may serve important in the game.
- Items aren’t detailed and numeral. Weapons won’t be looked at as a number of how much damage they deal. Instead, each monster faced will react differently. No weapon or armor in the game will show exact statistics. They will be different under every circumstance and encounter, so the adventurers will have to tactically think which to use.
- Due to the simple format of the graphics (low-res pixel art), it will be much more plausible for more time to be spent in designing and mapping out the world. This will promise a large game-world for players to live in.
- The graphics will be inspired by some of the greatest video games on the Super Nintendo, with modern and original designs and capabilities. The world will be huge and diverse, with many different settings, creatures and civilizations.
- The music will be memorable. The most famous tracks in video game history focused on a memorable and original melody, and not the format. Some of the memorable songs, included tracks from franchises such as ‘˜Legend of Zelda’ and ‘˜Castlevania’.
Look and Feel
Elandor Chronicles aims to recreate the nostalgic feel of older generation RPGs, with carefully designed 16x16px graphics, 8 bit sound effects, and accompanying MIDI soundtracks. The game-world is displayed in a top-down perspective, comprised of moderate-color count pixel art graphics.
The overall ambience of the game is bright and simple, but full of life and detail. The over-world comprises of different warm palettes, inspired by various old-generation games including Legend of Zelda- A Link to the Past, and the Dragon Quest series. Dungeons and outer-regions however, often comprise of completely different tones, setting the mood and using weather particle-systems such as fog.
While most of the initial game content is familiar to players, players will encounter fantastic sceneries and settings such as giant-mushroom forests, and an array of entirely original creatures and critters. Although most cities and towns will be mundane, players will quickly learn that the world is both unknown and foreign, which will make it a curiosity to explore, but also dangerous, particularly when off the beaten road.
Expore vibrant and retro landscapes, towns and caves.
The first release of Elandor Chronicles aims to provide content for 10 levels of character experience. However contrary to many online role-playing games, Elandor Chronicles will have a lot more content for each level, and experience requirements for additional levels will be high. To breakdown and decompose larger tasks and aim for realistic goals, Elandor Chronicles will be released in a series of ‘chapters’, each featuring new locations, creatures, and other content. The first chapter is called ‘Tales of a New World’, and will contain-
- 3 settlements. These include the capital imperial city of Helmsglade, the rural town of Greenbrook, and the Crossroad Inn located on Eagleford Road.
- 9 Overworld Zones. Each area resides in the first province of Elandor, making up the meadows, hills, rivers and forests in the imperial region surrounding the city of Helmsglade. These zones include Ralok Hills, Eldor Heights, Desolate Valley, Sedon Reef, Cinder Fields, Eagleford Road, Riverdell Hollow, Scarlet Range and the Amber Forest. Each of these zones may also have a number of caves or other similar small dungeons.
- 3 Major Dungeons. The Castle Ruins (which is also the remains of the old city of Helmsglade), the Moonlit Grotto, and the Abandoned Mineshaft.
- Each over-world zone and dungeon will contain approximately 4-5 unique creatures or critters each, promising about 50 creatures for the first province.
- Approximately 120+ weapons, including swords, axes, maces, bows and wands.
- Approximately 120+ armor items, compromising primarily of chest-gear and leggings, and also boots, gloves, headgear and shields.
- About 24+ trinkets, which range from rings and amulets to mirrors and compasses.
- About 12+ consumables, including both potions and food to recover health, mana or stamina, provide buffs or reduce status effects.
- About 30 spells, which are available at stores and also can be found in dungeons.
- 3 different skill trees, with 10 skills each. All skills can also be upgraded 3 times at higher levels, totaling 90 different skills or variations thereof.
- 4 Major repeatable quest types, including bountys, delivery, retrieval, and treasure hunting.
You will be able to customise your character with a large range of equipable and wearable items, hair styles, and colors.
Elandor Chronicles emphasizes on different aspects then most video games, focusing on creating an original and unique experience for all its players. Three of the game’s most important focuses will be as follows-
Travel and Practicality
Elandor Chronicles will encourage players to explore and adventure, with rewards, secrets and other incentives. With limited ‘quick-travel’, players will be obligated to often travel a familiar road, but may be greeted with variety, such as new content, and sometimes rare encounters. Players in most games have had the aptitude to teleport or quick-travel almost anywhere. However Elandor Chronicles endeavors to immerse you in a real and practical road. You will have to adventure often to reach different towns or cities, but as such you may encounter rare creatures or other chance content.
Travel will be one small part of Elandor which will aim to immerse players into the game-world, and make them feel like a denizen of Elandor, and not just a player aiming to ‘beat’ the game.
On the road, players might find themselves sharing the world, and be eager to travel together for company. As such, I will be implementing a variety of systems and features to encourage social interaction. A social community is important in Elandor Chronicles, and as such not only will ill-behavior be moderated, but incentives will also be promoted. For example, by partying with other players, not only will it be easier to take on harder areas or dungeons, but you’ll get a small XP bonus, have company on a long road, and in particular instances, be able to co-operate to enter areas or achieve tasks that otherwise one player would not be able to.
Retro Art and Music
With an original MIDI soundtrack, 16-bit SFX and graphics, Players will be carried on a nostalgic trip, reminiscent of some of the greatest titles on old video game consoles such as the SNES, and Master-Drive. Aside from the graphics themselves however, aspects and elements familiar with these titles will also be implemented. With open-house mapping designs, and a variety of other interesting presentations, it will feel retro, unique, but most important of all, remarkable.
Collection of weapons, previewing the 6 initial weapon types in Elandor Chronicles.
- Beau Buckley (myself), I am the project leader of Elandor Chronicles. I design and develop the game, including art, SFX, world design, and some music.
- Clark Bonafe (aka Togekite), is the lead musician and composer for Elandor Chronicles, already completing the foundation of what is an amazing soundtrack for the first release. Click here for a sample of the soundtrack!
- ‘Dash’ Neilson, additional artist for the project, working on both NPCs and icons.