STYGIAN: Reign of The Old Ones. Lovecraftian computer RPG.

Discussion in 'General Gaming and Hardware Forum' started by Scrawled, May 16, 2016.

  1. joevonzombie

    joevonzombie Buried alive in Golgotha

    Sep 28, 2015
    I cannot wait for this to be finished. Looks sooooo fucking rad.
  2. Scrawled

    Scrawled The Outsider

    May 16, 2016
    Greetings Fellow Acolytes of the Sunken Lord!

    Let's start our update with highlights of an in-depth interview by David McWilliam of the Twisted Tales blog with Stygian's creative director Can Oral.

    DM: Are there CRPGs that you particularly admire and take inspiration from? Or do you draw more from the imaginative worlds created for pen and paper RPGs?

    CO: I can say that we draw from both worlds. At the CRPG side, we have been analyzing titles of the early 90s like Dark Sun and Ultima Martian Dreams to the more contemporary CRPGs like Pillars of Eternity and Shadowrun. We aim to create a unique experience with Stygian but we are very interested in how other teams crafted their worlds, created a sense of progress, approached their systems, etc.

    I believe if you know where to look and have some patience, you can unearth incredible mechanics, approaches, and solutions from the history of CRPGs. On the other hand; tabletop role-playing, with its endless variety and freedom, is also an equally productive exploration field for Team Cultic. I can easily name settings like Ravenloft, Planescape, Dark Sun, WoD, Nephilim, Call of Cthulhu, and such among my pen and paper inspirations for Stygian.

    DM: This is a very unusual take on post-apocalyptic settings and reminds me somewhat of Curst in Carceri from Planescape: Torment. However, it feels as though there is more of a sense of slow-burning dread than a frenetic fight to save the town. How have you approached pacing in Stygian?

    CO: A very true observation. Stygian's human characters have already accepted their doom. The surviving folk in Arkham lost any hope of seeing the sunlight or their loved ones again long ago. Most of them also lost their minds while trying to face this unbearable truth. Others struggle to hold on to their miserable existences by going to the extremes, whether in belief, in pleasure, or in power... The pacing of Stygian will come from the player character's urgent need to reach the mysterious Dismal Man before losing his tracks forever.

    DM: Stygian is described as a game of horror, madness, and loss. How do you explore these themes while allowing the player to make progress?

    CO: We like to emphasize that Stygian is not about winning, but about “enduring” in terms of progression. From the beginning, we wanted our players to feel the sense of progression in continuing the journey somehow, rather than owning the game's meta. If you are alive, not completely insane, and still going, that is progress in Stygian. I believe there is a survivalist (and maybe a bit masochistic) satisfaction in that kind of design and balancing approach.

    You can read the rest of the interview here.

    On PayPal and Slacker backers

    We have heard your calls brother acolytes and have taken the necessary steps to work alongside with HumbleBundle to make Stygian available for pre-orders through our website. You'll also be able to donate to Stygian via PayPal with this system. We'll share more on this matter soon.

    Project Delegation

    As most of you know Cultic Games is an Istanbul based development studio. In order to start our Kickstarter campaign we've chosen a team member who is residing in a Kickstarter approven country (Germany in our case) for project ownership.

    Due to legal reasons, our current project owner Ata Bugra Ucertas is delegating the project ownership to another Germany residing team member Senem Gokce Ogultekin who is aiding Team Cultic with the musical compositions of Stygian.

    Thanks for your efforts Ata!

    A big applause to Gokce!

    See you in the next update!
  3. Scrawled

    Scrawled The Outsider

    May 16, 2016
    Greetings from the fathomless catacombs of İstanbul!

    We now announce the "Cultist of the Week" contest which will start at December 5, 2016 and last until February 27, 2017.

    All we want from you is to send us your unusual photos (or videos) depicting you as a member of the Secret Society in your own way.

    In this thirteen weeks period, we will select a photo (or video) every week from the pool of your submissions, just like the gif of the cultist on the hoverboard located below this description. At the end of the contest, one of the thirteen contestant cultists -whom will be chosen by you- will receive the dark gift: Your portrait as a cultist in Stygian. The proclamation of the damned will be at March 13, 2017, 13:00 (3:00 PM, UTC +3, Turkey).

    The story behind the submitted art must be creative in order for the contestant to be competitive among fellow cultists.

    Submit your photographs and videos to with your name attached. Feel free to leave a message to us if you wish.

    Dark regards from Team Cultic


  4. Scrawled

    Scrawled The Outsider

    May 16, 2016
    Greetings Fellow Dreamers of our Glorious Fall!

    As you know, true art can only come from suffering (lot's of hard work is a plus though). We've decided to make this update all about the new art assets of Stygian that we developed after the success of our campaign. For better or worse, you're responsible for them! Take credit dear cultist.

    Archetypal PC models with various stages of detail

    Textures and shadows are absent except the Investigator

    As you can see we're altering our characters to fit better with our vision of a more classically stylized game world.

    And here you can see our new approach to character animations. We've changed our animation software, we're now working full time with more animation artists and we're extremely excited about what's to come!

    On the downside, we often find ourselves doing crazy looking body movements and gestures to express our characters to animators. We warn you, don't make your best deep one moves in a glass office partition. People look...

    No texturing, test coloring.

    Speaking of the deep ones, let's check the evolution of our interpretation of the iconic creature. As you can see, the gills took most of the time!

    Basic Lighting Tests in Riverside
    Without darkness, there can be no light. On second thought, forget about the light. It's boring and almost non-existent in Stygian.

    We're working on a light engine for dark areas such as catacombs and crypts. Get ready to enter some combat scenarios holding your pistol on one hand and your good old lantern on the other!

    Honest Bill's Pawn Shop
    There can not be an art update without a glimpse of our backgrounds, right? Just don't ask about the fate of Honest Bill, we prefer not to talk about it...

    And we'd like to conclude our update with a character portrait. Since we're working on his dialogues these days, let us introduce you the owner of Schmidt's Antiques, Isidore Schmidt. He has a thing for keys...

    Thanks for your support and interest!

    By the way, if you would like to participate the "Cultist of the Week" contest, please visit the link below:

    We'll meet amidst the black seas of infinity.

    Team Cultic
    • [Like] [Like] x 3
  5. Scrawled

    Scrawled The Outsider

    May 16, 2016
    Greetings Fellow Collectors of Eldritch Artifacts!

    In this update we'd like to share Stygian's inventory system.

    Let's start with a video showcasing the system, and then talk more about its features and our design approach.

    Stygian's inventory consists of the following sections:

    Paper Doll - shows all the items the player currently has equipped, including weapons, outfits, artifacts, a backpack and things of that sort. We are pretty sensitive about customization and aim to display the player's choices with as many visual representations as possible. We're also designing unique models for special items such as rare weapons and gadgets. We are keenly aware of the fact that we RPG players love to play with our dolls, preferably voodoo dolls...

    Equip your character, in style...
    Statistics - shows almost all of the secondary statistics which affect combat and exploration. Potential effects of the items will be displayed as a tool-tip in the form of colored numeric modifiers.

    We haven't forgotten you Min-Max scholars
    Party inventory - shows all items in the party's possession. Stygian uses a shared inventory system so you won't need to spend time shifting carried items from one character to another. Less item management, more black magic, count us in!

    Did we tell you that we're also fans of adventure games?
    Item category tabs - grant easy access to all the items you'll need to prolong your hopeless struggle against the shapeless horrors of the abyss. Tabs are divided into the following categories: Weapons and ammo, outfits, consumables, tools and gadgets, artifacts, books and tomes, quest-related items, miscellaneous, and of course the favorites tab, which can be customized by the player.​

    Quick items - allows you to set certain items to be instantly available during combat and exploration. Don't forget to add your favorite smokes to one of the quick item slots. Cigarettes are essential for reducing stress but remember not to smoke them all because the Cigs have become Arkham's rising currency!

    As you can see, we tried to build upon the inventory features typical of western role playing games while balancing convenience and thematic flavor. We also chose to use larger icons for our items in order to include more detail, increase immersion, and show off the efforts of our talented artists.

    Finally, for the closure of this unholy update, Cultic Games present you the talented leather artisan, Master Sebo, working on our Special Edition Game Tomes! These hand made books of madness will bring doom to your neighborhood when the game is out.

    No human skin was used in production of our special edition tomes
    So please share your opinions with us fellow cultists and seekers of the forbidden knowledge. Are we walking the path of desolation gracefully?

    Until we meet again, sailing through the tides of the black unknown...

    Team Cultic

    • [Like] [Like] x 4
  6. Scrawled

    Scrawled The Outsider

    May 16, 2016
    The Menace in the Ambience: Composing Stygian

    Greetings Listeners of the Forbidden Melody!

    In this update we'd like to share some of the musical compositions you'll be hearing throughout Stygian and share our composer Asli Kobaner's thoughts on the process. We'll also be unveiling more on the production plans of Stygian.

    Please note that all the tracks are still work in progress. This means we're still measuring the sanity levels of the captured subjects while exposing them to Stygian's music constantly. We will update you on the results.

    In the meantime, here are some sound samples through the link below:

    Let's hear what Asli has to say on her work:

    "Since the beginning of Stygian, I've been closely entangled with researches on game music architecture. I endeavored to develop a general approach by identifying the structural model and its sonic needs through collective brainstorming and individual work.

    In this context, quest flows supply a narrative ground to distinguish different sound types and musical content. Lists and maps specifically serve to track and categorize these materials: a general map for tension and release patterns throughout quests, an inventory of virtual instrument plugins, effects, sound banks and recorded performances, lists regarding the amount of diegetic and non-diegetic material. All these processes aim to bring out the sonic world of Stygian.

    I think the boundaries between what is “music” and what is “sound”- yes, this old issue- is relative, or at best, obscure. Similarly it can also be hard to separate the “musical” composition from the sound design when it comes to Stygian. Even though most of the audio materials are functionally categorized (such as foley sounds, ambiences or leitmotivs), they feed each other blending in various combinations throughout the gameplay. With an assemblage of these echoing, imitating, contrasting, looping, music is adapted to the variability of the gameplay duration.

    As for the musical grammar, certain stylistic languages are employed:Indian ritual references, period music such as early jazz and late romanticism, and a wider array of musical expressions influenced by the works of Jonathan Harvey, George Crumb, György Ligeti, Alvin Curran, Stravinsky, Gerard Grisey and Fausto Romitelli among others."

    And here we present you the illustration you'll be seeing at the combat loading screens. With this approach, we aimed to create a more general feeling of terror and ever-shifting, constant sense of danger instead of focusing on individual Mythos entities.

    Do we need to say that the figure in the middle of the party represents your character?
    Last but not least, we finally have a release date for our special backer demo. You'll be wandering the uncanny streets of our doomed town in August, this year. We were expecting to land it in June but have decided to share a more complete experience. Expect more than a thirty minute long starter snack...

    Welcome to Schmidt's Antiques. No lighting applied.
    As for the release date, we've been seeing the possibility of Stygian becoming a more defined and involving game each day as we complete the tools and systems which enables us to create more content efficiently. We believe we can turn Stygian into a longer and more polished experience from a humble indie title with a modest budget.

    Let's see what our extended demo has to offer, then we can talk more about our wicked plans.

    We're also working on the Dreamlands quest as we promised, along with the new archetype Explorer and her prologue chapter.

    We have to go downstairs now. You know, unfinished business in the torture chambers and all...

    We'll meet amidst the black seas of infinity.

    Team Cultic
    • [Like] [Like] x 3