Fallen Enchantress: The Journey

By on October 9, 2012 5:45:49 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Derek Paxton

Join Date 03/2003
+118

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As you may know, we've set a release date for Fallen Enchantress. It's October 23, 2012.

These past two years have been quite a journey. When I joined Stardock, I asked Brad how much freedom I would have with the Elemental universe.  Could I make it a new and different game than War of Magic? He said, "Do whatever needs to be done, take whatever time it needs, make a great game." He meant it and that brings us to where we are now.

Fallen Enchantress isn't an expansion pack.  It's a new game. It exists in the Elemental world but beyond that, it's a new take on a strategy game in that world.

I was excited for the opportunity because I believe in the concept of the game, that you could have a 4x strategy game set in an RPG world.  The unit promotion system in Civilization IV, a traditional RPG convention, is what inspired me to keep going down that road with Fall from Heaven.  And with Fallen Enchantress we could go even further.

And I had the opportunity to work with incredible people.  The Galactic Civilizations team brought a focus on customization as well as being amazing artists and developers.  I also got to work with fantasy author Dave Stern and Jon Shafer, as well as spending many nights over the past 2 years talking about game design and the industry with Brad.

It is sometimes said that the games industry doesn't make games like they used to. I think what they mean is that there are few games with large budgets that take chances anymore. Having had the opportunity to design and build something that is unique, I can appreciate why there is such risk adversity in our industry. How to describe Fallen Enchantress? 

Fallen Enchantress is not simply a fantasy version of Civilization nor is it an Ultima-style role playing game.  Our goal was to create a strategy game that existed in a role playing style world.  We embraced mechanics that linked the unit layer with the empire layer, to take two very different games, and blend them into one. This was no small task to be sure.  That's where you guys come in.

For the past year, you have been with us every step of the way. Your feedback and ideas have been critical into molding Fallen Enchantress into the rich, deep strategy game you have before you. I am sure some of you would like us to spend another year refining it. We would love that too. But it's time to tell the tale of the Fallen Enchantress and let fate (and the market) decide where we go next with this game world.

Despite a release date being given, we have not yet "gone gold". We will have one final public beta this Thursday. We will also be listening to your feedback to that beta.  

I cannot express how thankful we are for all your support and help these many months. Thank you for sharing your time and thoughts with us.  We look forward to talking and listening to you for years to come.

 

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October 9, 2012 5:55:41 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

don't make me cry

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October 9, 2012 5:56:36 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thanks Derek, for your great direction and vision for what FE has become. I can appreciate the hard decisions you made (removing dynasties and simplifying concepts etc) and I think it's great that you obviously had such a great supportive working environment to make the changes that needed to be made.

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October 9, 2012 6:00:49 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


Thanks for listening to our criticisms, Derek.  Even if they weren't always constructive. 

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October 9, 2012 6:01:18 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

i love the silence before a storm 

 

lets hope it will be a good ppl buying storm

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October 9, 2012 6:09:50 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

You have created a very good game.

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October 9, 2012 6:12:11 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I really hope it pays off for you all. I love this game and I want to see it do well.

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October 9, 2012 6:34:12 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Great job on a great game Derek!

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October 9, 2012 6:42:17 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

This game is just great. You did a great thing here. 

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October 9, 2012 6:52:36 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thank you for creating a fun and unique game!

This was my very first participation in a beta and I very much enjoyed being part of the process.  Its pretty amazing to watch a game change and develop over time and to feel like somehow I have some input into how it unfolds.

I think there are still a few niggles, but overall it is a very enjoyable game and will do well.

I will recommend it to my friends   Good job, guys!

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October 9, 2012 6:53:20 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thank you very much for creating an amazing game. I have never seen a developer who shared his knowledge of the game development with the fans and listened to the feedback of the fans like Stardock. It was very interesting and fun to see how every patch improved Fallen Enchantress and i hope that the game will be a huge success.

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October 9, 2012 6:55:58 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thanks, really. Loving the game. Will only get better in the future (especially once we mod it like crazy hehe)

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October 9, 2012 7:03:07 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thanks so much for doing such a great job!  Also, thanks for helping me out with my game personally and getting it to work.  LOL Im such a geek, but when my wife came home I was all smiles.  She was like:

"What has you so happy?"

 

I responded, "I got to talk to Derek Paxton" grinning hugely.

 

Her response quickly nullified some of my grin "Who?"  /face palm

 

To defend my wife, I will admit she does game and has done so for quite a few years...mostly MMO's.  From EQ on up.  She just doesnt play single players 4x type games.  Also she is carrying my baby girl who will be her in about 6 days so I decided to go easy on her for her lack of knowledge.

 

"Hes the guy who was brought in to help with the WoTM sequel and he did some kick ass stuff with Civ 4."(She knows Civ 4 because I played it...alot.

 

"OH so its a Civ game," she asked

 

"No, its not a Civ game but its kinda like it...more like Master of Magic revamped in a way."  (She knows that game because its what she used to have to drag me from to go on dates).  You know its made by Stardock," I explained.

 

And again..."Who?" /face palm x2

 

Deciding once again to go easy on her because of various factors, I replied "You know the one that made Galactic Civilizations...the space game that I modded with Star Trek ships."

 

"Oh that one...the one with cute Cat race that I liked," she said while smiling.

 

"Cute cat race..the Drengin??  ARe you crazy...they are ruthless cold blooded killers and.." the rant when on from there for a few minutes.

 

She nodded at me "ya them...the cute cats."  I let it drop, because in my years of marriage I have learned a few things.

 

"Well anyway" I explained after regaining my composure, "Derek called my cell to ask me some questions about the problems I was having.  See?  Here is the number he called from...I could now have him on speed dial and could call him on a whim!"  I exclaimed with pride(and no...i have no intention of doing that, but hey its a guy thing to brag about someone famous calling them isnt it?)

 

"Oh so he knows you then," she asked.  Blissfully unaware that no...Derek did not know me.

 

"No not really, but ummm, well he was asking for volunteers so I did and boom he called me.  We had some game issues and he was trying to get them fixed."  He did ask me if I used mods, and I was like no I dont...though I did edit my xml files to make my Sov a bit better...I profusely apologized for the umm...advantage I was giving myself, but Derek laughed and said its "Your game do what you want"  Crisis of conscience adverted!

 

"Oh that was nice of him," she responded while turning on the oven to make our pizza which was waiting near by.

 

"Hell ya it was...I mean it was like Sid Meyer was calling me," I exclaimed proudly.

 

"Who?" she asked

 

I headed downstairs to my man cave at this point...

 

Thanks again for all the hard working and calling me to try and see what was going on.  Sorry I did a complete re install of the game before you called back the 2nd time.  And at least through all of this my wife has learned a few more names...though she did ask me if a new version of the "Cat game" was going to come out soon.  Kudos to everyone for all their hard work!!

 

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October 9, 2012 7:30:06 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Ok, I don't know if anybody ever read my post in the end, I don't even think any dev read it even quickly :/

But I've been there with you since the begining ! Following and criticizing  or drooling of amazement before your work... Once again, I'm sure nobody will read this but if anyone , any dev ever read this one unique post, I want to say thank you to that wonderful team of devs and to the community who helped to make this game what it is ! I'm very pleased with it (even if the magic system could be a little be revised and the earth magic get a few more offensive spells and add more city tactical fights in fufure addons) I love FE and now the 23rd seems so close when after those 2 years I feel it's been an eternity ! It still feels weird to imagine that FE will come out !!  

Anyway, thank you again and I wish a lot of commercial luck to FE !!! I mean it's been so hard for you guys to make Smth (unreal?) that would be (and will be) the most serious rival to Master of Magic... IMHO you've succeeded ! And you worked so hard and listened so much to us that you definitely deserve a huge succes  I am  anxious to read jeuxvideo.com , ign  and meta critic reviews ! I hope they won't bash FE and will bring more fans to you !

The comparison to MoM will be there again I believe and I hope everything goes well ! I'll be there to write on forums and tell the world how amazing FE is !!!

Good luck for the launch and thank you again for your amazing work and patience with us !!!

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October 9, 2012 7:37:23 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I think you'll have a success on your hands, Derek.  Best of luck with this.

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October 9, 2012 8:15:52 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I am sure some of you would like us to spend another year refining it.

I would not ask that of you, the game is close enough that a year would be "too much".. Not that there is such a term as too much polishing, its just a matter of my list of "serious issues" left
I don't think so anyways, I am happy to see you feel great for your own game but is getting slightly concerned due to the current "buglist" in my head and balance issues (still in my head )
And some places the UI is just missing a something.

Sincerely
~ Kongdej

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October 9, 2012 8:17:37 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

FE has improved a lot, and I am happy to see it going "gold".

I fear, though, that it requires more polish. I will wait for Thursday's update to post a list of any issue I encounter.

Lets hope that I'm just a worrisome person and the game is bigger success than we hoped for!

 

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October 9, 2012 8:35:15 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ,
                                                                             o  o  o

These past two years have been quite a journey.    ...         

I can only imagine!  But thanks for this summarizing Post; as well as all of the good work you have put into E:FE  And, as a couple of other folks have noted: Thanks, also, for your patience with us (Beta testers, Forum Lurkers, and others), when we haven't always been entirely sane.

Two years ... wow ... I downloaded my copy of E:FE on February 24 of this year, and the last 7.5 months have seemed both fast (at times), and like a lifetime (at times).  I am coming up on about 90 hours of official game time; but really have spent a lot more time on E:FE, when I include my "JUST THINKING"  time.  There really has been a rich treasure trove of issues, mechanics, Fantasy literature, Sci-Fi, real-world history, and related topics to explore, and do some serious thinking about, all in relation to E:FE!    It really has been stimulating and fun ... Thanks for a great Beta-testing experience !           

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October 9, 2012 9:00:13 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

This and Planetside 2 have become the first game since the era of Baldur's Gate, Planetside, and Knights of the Old Republic which I can't stop playing or shut up about.

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October 9, 2012 9:11:35 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Well done everyone at Stardock. This game is fun and unique, truly a work of art!

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October 9, 2012 9:25:15 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Well done. Pretty cool experience the past 2 years, full of ups and downs, drama, popcorn, and Xia's ponies (or lack thereof).

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October 9, 2012 10:14:29 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


Thanks for the hard work.  Cheers to you all.

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October 9, 2012 11:01:43 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I'm still hoping Xia's ponies are in there as an easter egg...

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October 9, 2012 11:08:02 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Mistwraithe,
I'm still hoping Xia's ponies are in there as an easter egg...

Check the 984 changelog lol

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October 10, 2012 8:50:13 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Save for a few remaining bugs, I also think the game is ready. And, as we all know, with the continued support from Stardock and its modding capabilities, this is just the beginning.

I'm glad to say that, from my perspective, you guys have created a truly fun game. Hopefully, the market will perceive the same. And since this appears to be the last piece left to crown an amazing experience, I just want to wish you the best of lucks with that.

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October 10, 2012 8:58:18 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Its been a great journey! 

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