Welcome aboard Scott Huelsman: Ilkor's first Community GameMaster
We were approached by Scott just over a week ago, offering his services to get involved in the Ilkor project. Scott brings with him many talents such as vast knowledge and experience in role-playing, a gamemaster, webmaster and programmer. Scott has even developed his own 'Role-Playing Novel' which is a very interesting concept. You should really check out his work at: http://www.thehway.com/WizardReborn/RolePlayingNovel/PlaytheRPN/tabid/2924/Default.aspx.
So Scott is to be our first Community GameMaster. Early in the New Year he will aid myself (Sean) in populating the game with all the various metadata tokens such as; weapons, armour, shields, monsters, spells, settlements, magical items, etc. This is no small feat and will take many months to get the bulk done.
In the meantime Scott has wasted no time at all and has taken on board a very important job of constructing 'The Arcadia Gazetteer'. You can read more about this in the next section.
The Arcadia Gazetteer
The latest development from the Ilkor / HeroQuest project is the release of 'The Arcadia Gazetteer'.
For those of you, who might be a little unsure what a 'Gazetteer' is I've included a small extract from wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gazetteer) below:
A gazetteer is a geographical dictionary or directory, an important reference for information about places and place names, used in conjunction with a map or a full atlas. It typically contains information concerning the geographical makeup of a country, region, or continent as well as the social statistics and physical features.
We have plans to release quite soon (sometime during the month of November) a wiki that will serve as a Gazetteer for 'The World of Arcadia' which is the setting for Ilkor: Dark Rising (http://ilkor.com).
To begin with it will be rather thin on content, but our first community GameMaster (Scott Huelsman) will be driving this over the coming months to bring it to life. This should prove to be an important area of the game for players to read, discover and learn about Arcadia.
So look out for this. It should be available within a couple of weeks with any luck. I'll keep you posted.
Well it's been a busy week though we still haven't cut any code!! Chris and I have another project we are busy finishing off before we can really get stuck into Ilkor.
Having said that, it has still been a busy week and we've made much progress. We've had a number of positive design sessions, mostly going over old ground on decisions we made last year. It was good to see that we are still on the same page and while there are a number of unanswered questions, the core decisions have remained the same, showing that the design is pretty solid and stable and the team is aligned .
Chris has started to do a little work on the mapping engine. This is a huge piece of dev actually and is both central and core to the success of the game. He is really in the investigative stage around the technology, reading up and learning more of the HTML5 and CSS3 features specifically around the 'canvas'. We've decided to design for the future as opposed to supporting backward compatibility. Anyway more on this in a future article which I plan on dedicating to our approach on mapping.
I've been communicating with both Simon and Jon (our artists). Remember our team is distributed geographically, Simon lives in the UK, Jon in the US and Chris and myself are here in Cape Town, South Africa.
Simon has been busy putting together some concept designs, focusing mostly around the Ilkor logo. Over the weekend I received his first sketches based on a brief I supplied several weeks before. The work really is quite amazing and I'm especially looking forward to seeing the finish piece. I am keen to share this with you, but I think it's best to hold back until the logo is complete, then I will dedicate an entire article to the thought process and design work that was involved in coming up with the finished logo design.
Jon has just been given the first brief with regards to the world map. Currently the brief is rather high level but it gives him food for thought while I finalise the draft map. The plan here is to supply Jon with a rough sketch of the Ilkor world map before the end of Jan. Hopefully by then he'll have enough information and background on the game to get his creative juices flowing and start putting his exceptional cartography skills to work! Accompanying the rough sketch I will be supplying him with various game setting information. I'm close to completing the cosmogony, mythology, and history.
I believe it'll be beneficial for both Simon and Jon to have this type of information in the back of their minds as they produce their work.
By the way the world is called Arcadia. :-) I am sure I'll be publishing an article in the not to distant future giving away some information about Arcadia.