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Hi guys,

Alongside my other project Cyborg War, I have been working on a roguelike that makes use of some of the same technologies I have been developing for the former.

All of my games use similar code bases I have written entirely by myself. These consist of:

Brain Damage API (BDAPI) - Rudimentary codebase written in ISO C99, supporting all of the inbuilt data types, string and data handling functionality and cross-platform coding synchronization.

Chaosforge - Random and procedural generation library, supporting a wide variety of common and uncommon implementations of randomness, such as random string parsing, visual and auditory noise generation with support for a number of different noise generation techniques, including white, pink, brown and perlin noise. High level functionality includes map generation, real-time and reactive music and sound generation and computer-generated storytelling. Not related to another Chaosforge.

Cranium - Cross-platform game library supporting TTY, console, Windows 95+, Macintosh, Linux, BSD and Solaris. Provides error, logging, window, keyboard, mouse, joystick, video, audio and 2d and 3d graphics handling amongst other things. Similar to libraries such as SDL, SFML and HGE, except entirely scratch-built and not based on any of the aformentioned. For roguelike and text-based games, Cranium offers support for traditional consoles (boo, no more fullscreen consoles in Windows Vista or 7), emulated consoles and tile-based graphics.

The vast majority of my time spent over the past year or so since I began working on the Brain Damage API and its associated technologies has been spent Cranium. I've been pushing 100+ hours of development a week consistently for over a year to get this far; my commitment is primarily based on my desire to be an independent developer in every sense of the word; I work with no one but myself.

That being said...

Bloodshed is a roguelike game I am developing. I've been planning on making a rogulike game ever since I first played NetHack nearly 8 years ago. Bloodshed is basically my own take on the roguelike genre after playing dozens of roguelikes over the years and differs in many aspects from them. My intent isn't mearly to make a roguelike game because I am a fan of the genre, but to make a compelling, story-based adventure game that carries that player through a long-term, thought-provoking journey that remains varied and surprising even after years of play.

Differences from other roguelikes are:
- Not based on any established fantasy worlds. An entirely new universe without elves, orcs or dragons.
- A completely new system of game mechanics that on the surface appears similar to the D20 ruleset merely for the purposes of familiarity but functions entirely different.
- Detailed cause and effect interpretation and notification. For instance, combat is not based on 2 or 3 rolls of a die, but a complex system of multiple conditional tests and finely-tweaked randomness. Bloodshed won't tell you that you simply "missed the monster" on an attack, but elaborate on the very reason that you missed in a narrative fashion that might be as minutely sensitive as the reflection of a bright light that reflected off of your sword or a twitch in your wrist.
- Permadeath exists only in circumstances that the player decides to set at the beginning of a new game. Bloodshed is set in a universe where no afterlife exists and its sentient inhabitants are forced to reincarnate after death for all eternity. Upon death, the player character is born into a new body and continues the game from there, unless they have no soul to begin with and the game simply ends. Residually recalled memories allow player characters to remember information based on their past lives and this ability is elaborately expanded upon in the game world. Your soul might be newly born or literally hundreds of thousands of lives old, and this has an effect on yor player character. Your character is effectively a hybrid of two components: the permenant soul and its personality and characterists and the temporary body, which is more or less a traditional RPG character minus the morality and some of the psychological stuff.
- True sandbox gameplay. There is no scoring (ignore that in the screenshots) or goal to accomplish set by the designer (me).
- The world is not generated randomly everytime. Well, it partially is; it is generated based on a constant seed, so you get the same world everytime you play. However, your choices, actions and external factors have a profound effect on the Bloodshed world and it shaped accordingly. We aren't just talking about the little things, but the fate of entire civilizations and solar systems. Death is not necessarilly to be feared in Bloodshed like it is in other roguelikes; since Bloodshed encourages long-term play, every game will be completely different, even though they start entirely the same. A lot of these gameplay mechanics share similarities with the tenants of chaos theory and the butterfly effect. The only difference that effects the initial condition at the start of a new game is who you choose to be.
- Insanity. The toll of endless rebirth has its effect on the spirit, and the older and more mature souls that inhabit the Bloodshed universe exhibit symptoms of profound insanities that can cause predictable or unpredictable things to happen to you in your journey...
- Lack of a morality system. I have always been firmly against systems of moralies in, hell, everything, including games, fiction and real life. You are free to interpret the unfolding events of the game as you see fit.

So basically Bloodshed's primary inspirations at both the design and player levels are fed by my musings on existentialism, nihilism and misanthropy.

Here's some shots of what I've got working right now. I'm working on the graphical tiles right now, but this is what is there:

Console mode:

Graphical tiles mode:

I'll keep posting more when I get stuff finished.

Until then, C+C would be encouraged.

I wish you great power and influence.

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Remember reading about such a thing as a kid for the first time... I think the game was for the AtariST.

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