Darkfall: Developer Journals
Darkfall Dev Journal #20: Fan Answers & Three Screenshots

Dana Massey | 21 Dec 2007 18:06
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In the final developer journal of the year, Tasos Flambouras chimes in with answers to a bevy of community questions. Topics include arrow physics, solo-ability, trophies and much more.

We also get three exclusive screenshots of the game that show off an Ork female, Human male and Alfar female respectively all in monster armor. There is an image on each of the three pages of this extensive article.

Darkfall Dev Journal #20
"Answers to Fan Questions & Three Screenshots"
Article by Tasos Flambouras (Associate Producer)

Ork Female (Exclusive)
Ork Female (Exclusive)

In this journal I'll talk about some things that caught our attention from reading the community boards the past couple of weeks, with a stronger focus on what I like personally since people are taking off for the Christmas holiday and my feedback is more limited than usual. As a matter of fact, I'm the last guy left at the office on a Friday evening typing this thing here so I can't go too crazy with it.

Someone was asking about arrow physics: In Darkfall arrows fly in a realistic arc and they leave a light tracer. They fly quite a bit faster than any MMO I've ever played and they have a pretty long range, longer than I've seen before in MMOs. I would say that the bow experience is pretty realistic. I don't think that we need to limit their range since you actually have to use considerable player skill, luck and plenty of experience to hit someone near the range limit. In other MMOs bow range is limited in a way by radar range since you have to select your target, something we don't do in Darkfall. Arrows in Darkfall do quite a bit of damage, and the bow will be a pretty powerful and effective weapon in the right hands. There's an exception to the realistic arrow physics, some magical arrows which fly in a straight line but have other limitations including damage. I really enjoy playing the archer in most games where it's offered as an option - if it's not gimped. In Darkfall it's so much more satisfying because, if you do it right, your opponents may not even be able to see you. It happens in testing all of the time. You don't appear on a radar, they have no idea where to look, or rather they might have an idea of the general direction judging by which way they were knocked back (an arrow hitting you will knock you in the direction of the strike) or a third party may notice the tracer. Then your opponents start running around so you can't get a clean shot trying at the same time to figure out where you're at. It feels great...I was playing around with someone once who happened to be on a wall inside the human capital and my arrow strike knocked him clear off into the moat. You've probably seen arrows sticking out of players in screenshots, but you can't pick them back up if they hit the deck. This is because we don't allow items in Darkfall to be placed on the ground.

The option to solo: again this is an option I personally enjoy the most and I'll give you my feedback on it as it relates to Darkfall. For one you don't need to conform to any alliance rules and regulations, you're not accountable to anyone except to your alignment and you can build your reputation as a solo player depending on your playing style. A lot of people are concerned that by going solo they'd be an easy target. That may be true in some cases, in others however, being a soloist makes you an alignment liability to a lot of people who may have attacked you without impunity if you were in a clan they were at war with. Additionally and reading the relevant posts on the forums I don't think you fully realize the impact on the game that the lack of radar has. You can go unnoticed when the odds are stacked against you, you can do hit and runs, and you can escape when you have to. You can be pretty self-sufficient depending on your skillset. You can always band up with other people in a party which is temporary but at the same time it's pretty powerful structure. Of course by being a solo player you may miss out on the clan portion of the game which is very interesting, or group activities like massive land or naval battles, epic quests etc. You could be affiliated with a clan or a group of players and get to enjoy that aspect of the game as well on your own terms. It's a given that the better crafters and traders would benefit more by being unaligned since this way they can offer their services to anyone. So as far as I know, soloing can easily be a viable and fun alternative.

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