Spiderweb Software is currently in the final stages of development of a new adventure RPG, having finished up their epic Avernum series in March last year. Avadon: The Black Fortress is the first part of their new epic fantasy saga, in which you play a servant working in the keep of Avadon. You can choose from one of four character classes, and will work as a spy and fighter working to protect the Pact – a fragile alliance of five nations, whose purpose is to hold back the invaders and enemies who seek to destroy your homeland. As a warrior and spy of Avadon, you will work to keep those enemies at bay, and with your position comes authority and power. Your word is law, and your resources are unlimited – but a dark time is coming, and your country’s warriors are being picked off by assassins, and you are the next target. A hidden enemy plots to unite your homeland’s foes, and if you can’t uncover it soon, your land and your people are facing total destruction.
As with Spiderweb Software’s other games, Avadon: The Black Fortress looks pretty old school with its isometric view, but it’s been designed with modern gamers in mind. For example, there is a map screen on which points of interest will be marked, and there are also pointers both on the map and on the screen edges themselves indicating the direction you need to go. A tutorial will also guide players through the early part of the game as you head towards the fortress, gently introducing them to the mechanics and style of the game. And although Avadon can be played as a solo affair, there is also a party selection system which will allow you to choose companions to travel along with you ala Dragon Age Origins/Mass Effect etc. You and your characters will be able to select new skills and abilities as you level up, and in addition to this your existing spells and abilities become more powerful too. If you put extra points in your existing skills/spells they will also gain extra effects in addition to their base effect becoming more powerful. As has become pretty standard these days, there are three branches of the skill tree to choose from, though it remains to be seen how many points we’ll have to play with and whether we’ll in be restricted to just one branch or whether there are enough points available to mix and match skills from the three branches effectively.
Combat is going to be of the same style as previous Spiderweb Software games; movement is real time until you get into combat at which point it becomes a turn based affair, letting you formulate your strategy carefully rather than relying on button mashing. A new addition to their usual style of combat though, is a tile based grid around the characters, and the restriction of movement once you’re engaged in a fight – meaning one can’t simply run away once in melee range.
All in all it looks like Avadon is going to give us a very interesting new world and story to get absorbed in!
Avadon: The Black Fortress, is set for release on mac towards the end of February 2011, with its PC port to follow shortly thereafter.
Avadon: The Black Fortress Features:
- Epic fantasy role-playing adventure in an enormous and unique world.
- Four different character classes, with dozens of unique spells and abilities.
- Uncover the fascinating history of Avadon and the land of Lynaeus.
- Many different endings. Your choices will change the world.
- Dozens of side quests, hidden dungeons, and secrets to discover.
- Hundreds of magical items to find. Use powerful crystals to make your artifacts even more powerful.
- Huge adventure with lots of replay value.
- PC Running Windows XP or later or Macintosh running System 10.4 or later
- 800 MhZ processor. Minimum 1.6 GhZ processor recommended.
- Video card or processor with OpenGL support and 32 MB video RAM (64 MB recommended).
- 512 MB RAM, and 200 MB hard disk space.
- 1024×600 screen resolution with 32 bit color.
- Avadon will run natively on Intel Macintoshes.