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The Temple of Elemental Evil Interview, Part 2 (20/05/2003)
we had the chance to talk about the upcoming Troika D&D CRPG
Greyhawk: The Temple of Elemental Evil with the game's Project Leader,
Tim Cain. What first started as a moderately sized interview soon
grew into a small monster of 42 questions which we will be posting
in two installments. Enjoy the final segment of the interview. (You
can read the first part here.)
there going to be any changes in monster encounters & quests depending
on whether we are walking around during the day or night? Are we going
to need torches or illumination spells if our characters don't have darkvision?
For random encounters, we are using tables that take into account both
time of day and kind of terrain. So you won't encounter undead during
the day, and you won't find lizardmen outside of swamps. But you won't
need torches or illumination sources of any kind. Like food, it's just
not fun to worry about those things.
have mentioned that platinum, gold, silver and copper coins will be used
in the game. Is there a specific reason why so many different types? Will
each type have to be stored separately?
thought it would be more fun to have different denominations of coins
rather than just have gold pieces, like lots of games do. Coins are weightless
and automatically stack into their own counters, so they don't take up
room in your inventory. And all of the PC's share the party gold, so you
don't need to pass it around during bartering.
is the Iron Man mode?
Man is our approximation of true PnP role playing. You make your characters
like in normal mode, but you cannot reroll the dice - you roll 4d6 and
drop the lowest, do this six times, and then arrange the six stats any
way you like. During play, you cannot make save games. If you quit, it
automatically saves your game, and when you return to Iron Man mode, it
picks up where you left off. If your party dies, that's it; your game
is over. You have to make a new party. If this sounds like a challenge,
it is! See if you can play through the whole module on Iron Man mode.
If it doesn't sound like fun, then play normal mode.
the game going to be customizable with custom portraits and soundsets?
We're not aiming for modding with this game. Our timetable is too short
and our focus is single player.
there be an import/export option for characters? Are you planning in advance
for any possible expansions, sequels or other Troika D&D games that
would accept the same characters?
were planning (and still plan) to make an export tool, so you could write
your characters out to the same format as used in the eTool supplied on
the CD-ROM with the Player's Handbook. It's not high priority though.
If we do a sequel and want to bring characters across to it, we can always
extract them from a save game.
you list some of the toughest monsters we will encounter? Any beholders,
liches, dragons, and the like?
but this is a spoiler. One of the toughest monsters (but not THE toughest)
is a Balor. This demon is big and pissed and self-immolating, and he's
not above toying with you before attacking. But because the game is non-linear,
you don't HAVE to take him on. You can always run away...
there be interactions between party members and any romances?
to both. However, we tried not to go too far with the former (after all,
the PC's should be the main focus, not your followers), but we may have
gone a little far with the latter. You see, we tried to cover all the
bases, you know, multiple solutions and all that.
intelligent is the AI going to be?
are learning from our mistakes. :)
have seen you mention an extra-planar adventure to be had in ToEE. Do
spoil us, where will we be going? Is this the only event where we will
go outside of the core surroundings of the game, or are there more such
are several side excursions in the module. I'm sure that the title may
give some of it away, even if you don't read the module.
you favouring (or shunning) any type of weapons in ToEE or will there
be an equal spread of all types?
are trying to do every weapon, including monk special weapons. Some weapons
we cannot do (like nets or double weapons), and some are still iffy (like
spiked chains). But most of them are there.