Dungeon Master-style game

The last few days, I’ve been experimenting a bit with art for a type of game I’ve been wanting to make for quite some time: a game in the style of good old Dungeon Master. Did you use to play it, or other similar games? If so, I’d like to hear about what sort of things you remember from it, what made it fun and what would make you want to play a new game in the same style :-)
Anyway, here’s a few examples of what my game will look like:

DmTestTroll

DmTestSpider

DmTestDragon

28 Responses to “Dungeon Master-style game”

  1. Mattias,Superb graphics!I did enjoy playing Dungeon Master back in the day. I fondly recall the sounds of doors sliding upwards, of pressure plates and using items like rocks to hold a series of plates down. Of creatures suddenly bursting through an open door, and some great music (I played on the Fujitsu FM-Towns with CDDA tracks).I would include things like the need to find food (that roll on the table in the kitchen), torches (or light spells that eat up magic points), and lots of puzzles if I was going to play a game like that again. Puzzles and these crisp detailed graphics are what would separate it from the many first person RPGs out there that people can create scenarios for, like Oblivion.I don’t particularly think that having a party of characters would be key — having a single character would be fine.Anyway, looks good!

  2. Mattias says:

    That’s some good points Robinson – exactly the sort of stuff I’m looking for here :-)

    I had just assumed that I would make it with a 4-character party, but you’re absolutely right, there’s no reason why it couldn’t be single-character just as well…

  3. Jensan says:

    Looks like the ogre has been working out lately :)I can only agree with Robinson on all points. The vast amount of puzzles that seems completely illogical at first is what make those old dungeon crawlers stand out. And small stones on the floor, of course…I would also vote for randomized dungeons/maps a’la Diablo 1 and 2. You would still have your places of interest that remains intact through the game and/or story (like “The Den of Evil” and so on), but their exact place would differ somewhat between sessions.Dungeon Master had a interesting magic system using syllables that I haven’t really seen since then (see http://dmweb.free.fr/?q=node/195), that I would like to see again.

  4. Magnus says:

    Dungeon Master is really one of my all time favorite games, and this looks REALLY (sorry for shouting, but it’s in pure joy :) promising. What I specially liked about Dungeon Master was an ingredient most, if not all, modern RPG lacks: Riddles. You could read a mystic message an a wall next to a series of pressure plates or alcoves, and you’ll had to figure out what to do to get pass. Mostly involving something from your inventory picked up earlier, or something you would have to look for. This made the game so much interesting than if you just had to bash your way through monsters and avoid traps. Here’s an example I still remember:Your party face an open trapdoor in the floor, and beyond that a closed door. You simply can’t jump over the trapdoor, and you don’t have any fly- or levitate spells. On the wall next to you there is a text reading: “Cast your Influence, Cast your Might”. This wasn’t one of the harder riddles in the game but for some reason I remember it. “Cast your Influence” meant you had to cast a Open Door spell on the door beyond the trapdoor. The door then opened but still the trapdoor in the floor blocked your way, and there was too dark to see anything beyond the now open door. “Cast your Might” meant picking the strongest guy in the party to throw whatever really heavy object you carried (in my case a wooden club) over the trapdoor and through the opened door into the darkness beyond and… “Click”, on a pressure plate that closed the trapdoor in front of you.These kind of things I really liked about Dungeon Master. And also the fact that you had to find food and water to survive. The pure joy of finding a fountain after your party was on the verge to die from thirst so you could fill your bellies and waterskinns was often greater than when finding a treasure. Most modern RPG’s has removed the food and drink ingredient which I think is a Big mistake, since that takes away an important aspect that makes the game feel more realistic.Certain RPG’s dynamically adjust the enemies you face to match your current level. That concept I think is totally lame and should be avoided at any price. I think every creature you face should have his/hers/it’s predetermined level, hitpoints, strength etc. If your not ready to face it, go train and come back when you are. But of course monsters should be a little less lethal in the beginning of the dungeon than further on.Just a few thoughts,Good luck with the game, I will certainly buy it, or volunteer as a beta tester if needed.

  5. Magnus says:

    Oops, seems I posted my comment before reading the previous comments which included about the same thoughts as mine. Well, the more the merrier :-)

  6. Magnus says:

    I just found a complete list of itmes used in Dungeon Master. Maybe could be of some help or give you some ideas: http://dmweb.free.fr/?q=node/259

  7. Nicklas says:

    Looks great! I’m a huge Dungeon Master fan. Let me know when the game is ready for “beta” test :)

  8. laptops says:

    well,emmie here and fond of much games…i like these pics very much and want to know that when will be this game launched?Looks great! I’m a huge Dungeon Master fan. Let me know when the game is ready for “beta” test :)…ok do it complete soon bcoz i am waiting…

  9. McValdemar says:

    Looks simply wonderful.Prerendered graphics will always allow an awesome detail to the image.Would be great to be able to play a dungeon crawling game again.And recently Steam offers many indie games. This one would surely be a great addition in a scarcely crowded area.

  10. Zyx says:

    If you need help with the engine several people can help you on dungeon-master.com forums.I would gladly help with the dungeon and gameplay designing parts.

  11. Shaun says:

    A single character works… but make sure you have room for multiple chars… for one simple reason, the ‘guide the sorceress/healer through the dungeon’ starting quest. The character accompanies you while you learn so you don’t die. It’s a good way for them to learn.
    I’d actually have them leave mid combat as a joke. “Trolls… um… no… AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!” *runs screaming*
    The troll chases after…
    You are left in the dungeon alone.
    You hear, “IT’S TRYING TO EAT ME!!! SOMEONE HELP!”
    HElP Y/N?
    You arrive too late, now fight the troll. (Yeah, sucks don’t it!)

  12. Beastman666 says:

    Just installed and “played” through the demo. Very promising, but still alot of work to be done. I hope you will continue the project, because my nostalgia took over and I would like to play a “new” DM-game.

  13. McValdemar says:

    Sorry Beastman666 but where did you find a demo of the DM game?o_O

  14. Beastman666 says:

    @McValdemar: it’s here: http://bit.ly/4nGYta (also see dungeon-master.com’s other clones forum)

  15. takis76 says:

    Fantastic. Where could I download a demo?I am creating the Eye of the Beholder 4 , and I am looking for a good engine.

  16. Mattias says:

    There’s a simple walk-around demo here:http://bit.ly/4nGYta.Progress have been halted on this for a bit, as I’ve recently moved (from Sweden to the UK), and I only have my laptop here, which is not good enough for doing the artwork for this game. I’ll probably get going with it again when we get our stuff shipped across.

  17. DCJerboa says:

    Dude! hurry up and write this please. There are 1 bazillion dungeon master fans who keep reloading it and playing it every few years because frankly, its never been beating. If you capture its essence, which was the perfect balance of difficulty and complexity, with your artwork… you can retire. :)Go the route of torchlight (game, google it) and offer for download for $10. It’ll pay for itself in a week. 😀

  18. Maabus says:

    Wow i LOVED dungeon master, and this game looks great, i would pay to play. please keep working on it.

  19. SOLO says:

    I played the walk around demo and for a 2D start it looks OK…but the tables and item views are not correct and in some corridors it looks as though th player is not moving even though you press forwad and back.What we need however is real 3D and not psuedo 2D, with lightiing and physics the only contender so far who is anyway close to this is the game ENTOMBED (google it)The top graphics on this page are good for concept and good use of POSER models which if you kept 100% 2D could work but would need to be 3D for a commercial venture IMHO.Great to see though and I really do not know why anyone has not created a good clone or follow up and released it yet….I agree with you only need to pick one champion to play this sort of game, as in the original you had x4 characters but you really did not feel you were playing them, only that you were using their skills, eg. magic etc.Maybe an idea taht you go back into the dungeon after all these years as one player and use artefacts from the original characters to aide you on your quest??? Gothmog item could give you magic abilities etc :-)RegardsSolo

  20. Mattias says:

    Thanks :-)

    Well, first of all, the game is not meant to be commercial – it’s just something I’m making for fun, and it will be released for free. I’m even considering adding good modding support, so people can make their own stuff for it.

    I wouldn’t even consider making this game in 3D. Personally, I don’t think 3D and physics would enhance this type of game one bit :-)

  21. solo says:

    Hi Mattias, Interesting that you would not do it in 3D…….Would not 3D enhance the movement of the player around the dungeon, instead of the old one step movement?Physics – Would this not help with fireing arrows throwing items, weight puzzles etc?Great to chat with you on this topic, many thanksSolo

  22. Mattias says:

    For some people (me included), the one-cell-at-a-time-ninety-degree-turn type of movement from these old games have one big advantage over free-form 3D movement: it helps you keep your sense of orientation and you won’t get lost as easily. Additionally, I think that using full 3D would make more easily turn it into a fast-paced action game, which would fail to capture the essence of the original.

    So even if I did make it in 3D, I would definitely keep the old style of movement. It would allow for more dynamic lighting, but at a much increased complexity and production overhead (in making all the models, as I couldn’t use poser anymore).

    Physics wouldn’t help for things like arrows (even modern 3D games don’t simulate fast moving projectiles like that), and again, I think having physics-based puzzles would make it a very different type of game – and not necessarily a better one, in my opinion…

  23. Beastman666 says:

    well said, mattias :-)

  24. solo says:

    Mattias I see where your coming from, but I may have a go at a 3D version just for fun. Great talking to you!Kind RegardsSolo

  25. Bob says:

    Dungeon Master was where it all started for me. Then came Lord of Chaos and then Westwood came with EOB series and later Lands of Lore.I miss the dungeonstyle rpg’s like the old days. Nowadays it is all about eyecandy and finishing games within 10h as a lot of people can’t be bothered to play any game longer than that.I absolutely loved the puzzles. They were truly awesome and one could wander for hours around hitting each wall or playing with every ‘out of place’ looking pixel hoping it was a button.Graphics looking good but more important, how will the gameplay be? Can we get a 100h+ dungeon master classic in a new graphic coat?Would be awesome, keep up the good work.

  26. CaptainD says:

    Cool graphics!Some fond memories of the original game:Gaining ninja levels just by throwing stuff Poisoning myself with strange potion combinationsWorm rounds!The ability to see through walls with the right spellGaining fighter levels by continually walking into walls Those excellent atmospheric sound effectsIf you can keep any or all of those features it would be great. Constantly remade, but has it ever actually been bettered?!

  27. Iván says:

    Looks impresive! What is the progress in % of the game at this moment, Mathias?

  28. paul says:

    have you ever finished this game looks good as spent may hours doing dm
    years ago .if ever finished and available plese let ne know

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