DISCLAIMER: this blog post is from a time when Druidstone was still in preproduction. Almost everything in the game design has changed since then. For example, all the levels are now hand-crafted (procedural generation is gone), the main character is no longer a druid, and there are multiple playable characters. We are keeping this blog post here for historical reasons. To get a better impression what the game is about, please read the About page and later blog posts.
All is dark. Your mind is floating in the endless reaches of the great void. Barely visible, mist and dim fading stars in the far distance are the only things you can discern. Then, suddenly something in the darkness stirs… “Your time has not yet come” a deep resonating voice booms. A bright light flashes so intensely that it pierces your mind!
You hear the rustling of autumn leaves. You open your eyes and see an ancient pillar of stone covered in pulsating runes. You are standing in the center of a stone circle in the middle of a clearing somewhere in the Menhir Forest. A woman with skin of purest white steps forward and smiles at you. Her eyes glow blue, like distant galaxies. “What took you so long?”
Welcome to the Druidstone dev blog! This blog is about the development of a fantasy roleplaying game called “Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forest” which we have been working on since fall 2016.
In the world of Druidstone, the druids of the Menhir Forest possess a great power: the power of reincarnation. When a druid passes on, through some mysterious process his spirit is able to return from the great void back into the world of living and to his former self.
But with every reincarnation the world itself seems to change: where there was only a thicket of bushes in the forest before, there may be a trail or a shrine of stones now. The ancient ruins in the forest change place and the tunnels and their inhabitants beneath the ground are all different. Even stranger, the denizens of the forest do not seem to notice this at all.
Druidstone is set in a vast procedurally generated forest filled with exciting locations to explore and of course encounters, the meat of every RPG. You will meet interesting non-player characters such as the insane Red Priests who worship a being called Oghmu and the mysterious Traveller. You fight deadly bosses and explore ruins and dungeons in an open-world single-player game. Some of the encounters are friendly but many can lead into conflicts which are resolved using a tactical, turn-based battle system on a two-dimensional grid. The game features roguelike elements, so that when you die the game begins anew with different levels and encounters. Some of the encounters even react to you being reincarnated, so even by dying you can gain deeper understanding to the mysteries of the Menhir Forest.
Even though there are random elements in the game, at the heart of Druidstone is an overarching storyline and key encounters which give structure to the game and avoid it being just a gauntlet with random monsters to kill. In fact, we can’t wait to tell you the epic story we have in our mind! In addition, there are the stories you create as you explore the almost infinite space of procedurally generated content.
In the beginning there is an idea
Who were the druids? Did they build the Stonehenge, and why? These were the questions we asked ourselves when we started the design process for this game. After researching the subject we realized that even today relatively little is known about the druids. Apparently they were (are?) a group of mysterious men and women who had a special relationship with the nature and performed rituals at the sites of standing stones. Who knows, maybe they even possessed some magical powers?
This idea really stuck in our minds and began to evolve. We started seeing glimpses of the imaginary world of Druidstone, a world of ancient forests, massive standing stones, mist-clad shrines, and of a darkness that was coming. And of course of the druids, caretakers of the ancient stone spirits of the forest. The world began feeling more than imaginary to us… And thus the world of Druidstone and also the idea for this game was born.
In Druidstone you are one of the druids and you have just been reincarnated in front of the stone pillar with its pulsating runes. Who are you? How did you die? Your mind is foggy. The rustling of the leaves and the wind carries ominous whispers. The darkness is coming…
The game will be released on Windows but the release date has not been set yet. But that is getting ahead of ourselves. The road is long and there is so much to do and so many ideas to explore. Better get hammering that keyboard!