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Geneforge 5 - May Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #30
I will tell you this about the factions. The game-winning factions are all designed with a focus on reaching an end to the war/story. They are defined by their goals, not their tactics.

And yes, there may well be a game-losing faction.

At this point, I am not planning to add any new player-made creations. I like the current mix. I will be focusing on rebalancing them to make them more useful. In particular, the melee creations will be getting some love. I'll probably start with giving them a bunch more health, to give them more of a "tanking" capacity.

I don't have plans to ever add pack animals. It's a lot of extra code for not much of a gain. And anyway, your mule would die the first time you encountered a monster with an AE attack.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - May Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
It's been a long, exhausting run on Geneforge 5 lately. I have completed 13 zones, 2 major cities, 2 game-long plot threads, and all of the demo.

I am finally taking an overdue moment to say where I am at. I'm sorry it's taken so long, but Rock Band, Smash Brothers Brawl, and GTA4 don't play themselves.

It's tough work. It has been a real challenge to find a way to end the series in a plausible and satisfying way and to give the player a real role in it. It is really important to me for the game to reflect that this is a large world, full of a lot of powerful people. The player gets to have a small but pivotal role in ending the war. There are heroes and generals running around. You are the agent acting behind to scenes to help one faction be triumphant. I really like this aspect of it. It feels like the right balance between making the player significant and part of a larger world.

As I said before, there are five game-winning factions. You can play through much of the game, meeting people and finding out who the factions are, and then decide which one to join. Some are reasonable. Some are pretty crazy. All provide satisfying endings to the saga.

I have done a lot of work on the interface. Geneforge 5 now supports OpenGL and will tap some of the power of your graphics card.

In Geneforge 5, you can play the game on any size of monitor and you can play the game in a window. If you have a huge monitor, you can see a huge chunk of the terrain around you. It really makes a big difference.

There are a lot of new graphical frills that make things look quite a bit nicer. Of course, these can be turned off on older machines. I fully intend for old machines to be able to run Geneforge 5, though you might need to shrink the play area a bit.

There is now customization for the keyboard shortcuts. You can also customize the game area somewhat by moving around or minimizing the party roster and automap.

You will not be surprised to learn that many major characters from earlier in the series are returning for a final hurrah (or destruction). You will also get to meet and deal with the mysterious Shaper Council. The chaos of the previous years have caused the leaders of the Shapers to become ... erratic. Perhaps this can be exploited for your gain.

You can also learn a lot about the history and ways of the Shapers. Writing these parts are the most fun for me.

Still hope to have it out for Mac in November. Seems plausible.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
New Beta Online Store + Discount On Newer Games in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #3
Two questions: (1) How long will the online store feature the discounts on G4 and A5;

Until it's no longer the beta store. Don't know how long that will be. Not very.

and (2) what happened to Galactic Core?

We don't support it anymore. And we don't sell what we can't support.

Maybe this is a dumb question (I didn't actually read the license) but why is BoE still for sale if it's open-source?

Why shouldn't it be? If people want the new versions of it, they're there. If they want the old, supported version (and don't want to compile a bunch of source code), it is still there too.

Since nobody buys it from us either way, it's kind of moot.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
If You've Never Posted, Read This. in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
Soon, all accounts that have never posted will be deleted. This is to clear the database of the huge number of spam accounts that were created but never used to make spam.

If you want to preserve your account, please post something here. It doesn't have to have anything useful. Or even words, really.

Don't worry. This won't damage your lurker status. :)

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
New Beta Online Store + Discount On Newer Games in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
New Online Store - Our new, secure online store has just entered beta testing. If you are about to order one of our products and would like to help us out, please enter the store and purchase it here:

Spiderweb Store

If you have any comments or problems with the store, please let us know.

As an added incentive, during the web store beta, Avernum 5 and Geneforge 4: Rebellion are 10% off when bought using the store.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Important Message About Board Upgrade in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #11
As boards go, these boards don't have a huge population. I am optimistic that, once the bot overhead has been purged, we'll have the CPU power available to turn on avatars and other features. I certainly want to.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Important Message About Board Upgrade in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
In the very near future, we will be pulling the trigger on the long-awaited upgrade of this board's software. Sadly, as we are paying the company to do the upgrade for us, we do not have an exact time/date when the upgrade will take place. All of the old articles and accounts should stay in place. If any interested parties want to do a backup just in case, we wouldn't object.

We will be upgrading from this archaic version of UBB.classic to UBB.threads 7.2. This new board software will have many new features, including some very helpful anti-spam upgrades. We think that the new board will be faster, better, and easier to maintain.

We selected UBB.threads because we felt that it had the best chance of being able to maintain the old board posts. Since the primary purpose of this board is to provide an archive of hints and information for players of our games, this was, by a long shot, the most important consideration. If there is a different sort of board software you prefer, we regret your disappointment.

One unfortunate effect of the old board software is that we have a HUGE number of spam accounts. Thousands and thousands. This slows the board down and causes all sorts of problems. To deal with this, once the new board is installed, we will be deleting all accounts with a post count of zero. We will be really careful to make sure that legitimate accounts are not harmed, but some step along this line is absolutely necessary.

That is the important information. We hope to see you all in the FUTURE.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
I don't want to be a woman! in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #17
I called them shock troopers because, in a world of magic, I think that would be the role of wizards on the battlefield. They go in early, unload their devastating attacks to shock/awe the enemy, and retreat while the warriors/creations go in and take advantage of the disarray.

I knew that people would find it odd that the shock troopers look so non-burly. But it made sense inside my brain. :-)

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Spidweb Keygens in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #14
I think it is obvious that it is upsetting. Nobody enjoys having people steal from you or your family. It is completely impossible to make something hackerproof. That doesn't mean that the theft is moral or, really, anything but theft.

My main goal is to keep honest customers from suffering due to the actions of the thieves.

I think that is all that needs saying. All this thread does is advertise keygens to people who might not know about them.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
The Time has Come in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #168
Oh, I think everyone has had the chance to have their say here.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Indie Game Developers Showcase in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
We have entered Avernum 5 in the Indie Game Developers Showcase. Fans of the game are welcomed to vote for it here ...

http://indiegameshowcase.com/index.php?file=contest_msg

Select Vote For a Game and then pick Avernum 5 from the menu.

Thank you!

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
The Time has Come in General
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #10
Considering how quickly the current web board is decaying under the assault of the spam-bots, the upgrade will probably happen sooner rather than later. Hopefully in the next 1-2 months. And we will give plenty of advance warning.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - March Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #34
The editor will be a character editor, not a scenario editor.

I have completely redone the tutorial system. I think experienced players will be very happy with it now.

The missing character type is not a drakon. It's a strong magic-medium shaping (or is it the other way around?) human.

- Jeff Vogel

--------------------
Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - March Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #30
"So... Jeff, mate. I know you're planning on working on Something New™ after you finish Avernum 6, but you're eventually going to revamp the old Geneforge games, right?"

Yes. The question is when.

Right now, the next in line for the rewrite treatment is Avernum 1-3, which are getting very creaky in their old age and will look and play great when I adapt the Avernum 6 engine to them.

On the other hand, Geneforge 1-3, while a little old and musty, still run fine. So I will definitely polish and rerelease the old games, but it'll be a few years. I don't plan to let my quality work fade away while I'm still living.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - March Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #26
"Will we be seeing boats and/or elevation? Also, since this game looks like it will get a lot of replay, how about the ability to turn tutorial messages off?"

Nope, nope, very unlikely.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - March Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #22
"Also hoping for a built-in editor. The A5 one is beautiful!"

It is extremely likely that this will happen.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Geneforge 5 - March Update in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #0
Now that I've spent two months working reasonably hard on Geneforge 5, I can start posting some monthly updates about it.As time goes on, I'm talk about the interface upgrades (considerable), the game system and spell system upgrades, and all the little things that will go into finishing this series.

This will indeed be the last game in the Geneforge saga. At last, you can bring the war to an end. Coming up with a plausible way for one lone person to help end this enormous conflict has been very difficult. The complexity of the game and the storyline is making me a bit dizzy. Still, I think I have it under control.

The storyline and game structure will be much closer to Geneforge 1 and 2. You will wander around and interact with five (FIVE!) different factions. Eventually, you can choose one to fight for. There are all of the options you probably predicted from the previous games, and others that might take you by surprise.

You will start, as usual, as a lone Shaper/lifecrafter. You will be able to choose to be either a Shaper character (the old three choices) or as one of the six different rebel classes. Yes, I am putting in the "missing" sixth character class from the rebel side.

The spell system will be mostly the same, but I am completely reworking how buffs work to make them more interesting and player friendly. I'll go into this more in later months. Suffice it to say for now that the "OK, this fight is tough, I'll put 12 buffs on every character. Zzzz." system had to go.

The big design question for me now is how to handle the "evolved" versions of the creations. Geneforge 4 had stronger versions of creations that started dying immediately so you had to use them quickly. They appear to not have been at all popular. I want to find a better way to approach this. (Note: Making creations during combat is not an option.)

I hope to release the game for the Mac in November. Since I've been making good progress, this seems doable.

- Jeff Vogel

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Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
How long to wait for Key? in Tech Support
Board Administrator
Member # 1
Profile Homepage #11
New and replacement registration keys are always free. Right now, they are generated by hand, but we're looking at ways to drastically speed up the process.

"I hope you picked up a case of Bawls."

I tried that stuff at PAX last year. It's like a pretty blue bottle full of sadness.

- Jeff Vogel

--------------------
Official Board Admin
spidweb@spiderwebsoftware.com
Posts: 960 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00

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