ATTACK MOUNTAIN DEVELOPER DIARY
ENTRY 1: THE FORGE SYSTEM / HILT AND BLADE
Welcome to the very first Developer Diary entry for Legend of the Time Star! Today, Time Star’s director will take you through the game’s Forge System and give you more insight on how to upgrade and customize your weapons.
“Again I entered my smithy to work and forge something from the noble material of time past.” -Jean Froissart
Your hero will have quite a lot on his shoulders in Legend of the Time Star; there will be no shortage of evil to eradicate or dungeons to scour. It’s good to know you’ve got The Forge System at your back - temper your steel effectively, and you’ll be ready for anything.
What is the Forge System?
The blacksmith’s Shoppe in each major town in the game contains a Forge, a place where the player can tailor their armor and weapons to meet their current needs. At a Forge, the player can do a wide range of things, from forging (and reforging) their weapons to upgrading them with items they’ve found while adventuring.
Each sword that the player can acquire is split into two pieces, the ‘hilt’ and the ‘blade’. Both pieces control different aspects of the user’s standard attacks:
- Hilt controls attack speed, stat bonuses (defensive), and weapon type (1-hand or 2-hand)
- Blade controls damage, stat bonuses (offensive), and status effects (such as poison, life absorption, and magic damage types)
A cleaned up page from the director’s sketchbook for the original concept of the Forge System – horrible handwriting and all
Break it Up (or don’t)
Unlike other games where you get a weapon and that’s it – you maybe get to upgrade it a couple of times or something – you don’t have to keep a weapon’s blade and hilt together in Time Star. You can use the Forge to take the blade of one sword and attach it to the hilt of another! If you’ve got a one-hander that has an awesome blade, but you don’t want to wield a one-handed weapon, you can combine it with a two-handed hilt. If you’ve got a massive blade you want to wield in one hand, you can attach the blade to a one-handed hilt and wield it alongside a shield. This allows players to be creative and cater their weapon needs to their current adventure.
The only thing limiting your weapon forging abilities is your coin purse. There’s a small fee each time you forge or reforge a weapon, but other than that, you’re free to customize your weapon as you see fit! There’s no limit to the amount of times you can use the Forge.
Weigh your Options
You won’t always want to split up a sword’s pieces – a lot of weapons will offer some sort of ‘set bonus’ for using their hilt and blade together at the same time. It’s up to you to weigh the weapon’s unique set bonuses against the stats of the weapon forged by you.
You’ll most often receive a sword as a complete weapon, whether it’s from a drop, a chest, or a quest reward. Others, such as the game’s more rare and unique weapons, may be split up, waiting for you to discover and unite both pieces into a fearsome weapon that will send your opponents running for the hills.
Rare and unique weapons will almost always have a set bonus, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use them separately! In fact, one of the great things about the Forge System is that it allows you to use parts of weapons without having to have the entire weapon in your possession. That means that if you acquire the blade of a rare sword, you can start using it right away, even if you don’t have the hilt.
Perhaps there’s a sword you’ve put together that you really like, but you’re starting to notice it doesn’t pack the same punch if did a few levels ago. Or maybe suddenly your armor isn’t giving you as much protection against some heavy-hitting opponents. What can you do?
Upgrade them, of course! Using items that drop off of enemies or purchased in shops, you can upgrade and improve your weapons and armor to boost their stats and add special properties!
Let’s use an Iron Sword for an example scenario. Perhaps the Iron Sword’s stats break down like this:
- Iron Blade: 20-29 damage per strike, 1.2 attack speed
- Iron Hilt: 1-handed; +2 Defense, successful counterattacks do 2% more damage
The Iron Sword was great at level 4, but now that you’re level 9 it’s taking a lot more to chop down your foes. After a fearsome battle with some Iron Skeletons in a dungeon, you obtain 4 iron chunks and a scrap of leather. After returning to town to stock up on items, you head to the Forge to give your Iron Sword a much needed shot in the arm.
To review what you need in order to upgrade, you simply go to the Upgrade Weapon option at the Forge and select the Iron Sword. You’ll get a detailed chart that defines what you’ll need for each upgrade level! Here’s what it looks like for the first level of upgrades:
Iron Blade +1
- Requires: 2 Iron Chunks, 30 coin
- Upgrades: 20-29 damage per strike -> 32-41 damage per strike; 1.2 attack speed -> 1.0 attack speed
Iron Hilt +1
- Requires: 1 Iron Chunk, 1 Leather Scrap, 30 coin
- Upgrades: +2 Defense -> +5 Defense; Successful counterattacks do 2% -> 4% more damage
You don’t have to upgrade both at the same time – you can upgrade just the blade, or just the hilt. If a player wanted to use their crafting materials to upgrade the blade of one sword and the hilt of another, that’s up to them.
As the player increases the level of a weapon’s blade and hilt, the requirements will increase as well. In most cases, the amount of resources the player will need to upgrade an item will double with each level, but this isn’t a be-all, end-all rule.
Armor functions in a similar matter, but has some nuances that we’ll be going into in a future Developer Diary.
Thanks for reading!
This is only the first of many developer diaries that we’ll be doing – we hope that these will get you as excited about the game as we are!
Remember, if you want to support Time Star, you can do so here – we’re 26 days away from the end of our Kickstarter and we have a long ways to go, so spread the word to everyone you know who is looking for that next great retro Action RPG – and, of course, be sure to support the Kickstarter yourself!