World of Arch

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World of Arch
WoaScreenShot.png
WoA screenshot
Developer(s) I.A. Jääskeläinen
Stable release
1.7 / 1996
Operating system AmigaOS, Windows
Type Roguelike
License public domain (without source code) / Freeware
Website www.archmonsters.com

World of Arch, (WoA), is a freeware roguelike video game, designed by I.A. Jääskeläinen, and released in 1994.

Unlike many Rogue-like games, WoA used simple 16-coloured graphics and simple 8-bit sound effects. In the old 1994 version of the game, there were several single-map adventures, where the player and co-player could explore areas, meet Non-Player-Characters, attack monsters and solve mysteries.

Concept[edit]

In the original World of Arch, the player selected an adventure file, Game Speed, Sound settings and started a mission. The player character was predefined by the selected adventure file. The stories in the old WoA were short and designed with an Adventure Editor, which was supplied with the software. During the game, the player could search for random items and monsters to play with. There was three different types of missions.

  • Return an Item to Somebody
  • Find one or more Items (such as seven red keys)
  • Kill one or more Creatures (e.g. three mummies and their leader)

Co-player and playing in realtime[edit]

The game was playable also for two players simultaneously. The second player (co-player) could control a creature on the small screen on the right by using number-keypad or joystick. Co-player's functionality was much more limited and automated. Two-players game usually needed the use of Realtime Game Speed instead of Relative Game Speed.

Alignment[edit]

During the game, it was important to know what precautions some Monsters and Creatures had about some other. There was seven different alignments and no definitive rules such as "every Skeleton Warrior is Evil". This alignment could be changed via a power item such as Symbol of Law.

Experience levels[edit]

Another main difference to the most Rogue-like games was that in WoA every creature could achieve experience levels. There was fighter, ninja and wizard types of experience points and levels. Also every creature had its private data, which remained during the whole game. This meant that the player could meet up with a previously encountered creature again.

Artificial intelligence[edit]

World of Arch utilized advanced Artificial intelligence algorithms compared to the other games of the time. The creatures were able to fight against each others, achieve experience levels, cast spells and gather and use Items such as weapons, armours, helmets, shields and food to regain Hitpoints.

Development history[edit]

The development started in 1993 by using Amos Basic. The first version 1.0 was completely in Finnish language and it was released via BBS in Finland in 20.6.1994 for Amiga Computers. A bug-fix version was released 5 days later. Due to the considerable success, the game was translated in English, but the development was delayed for over a year. The version 1.7 came out in 10.4.1996 and later on it was uploaded to Amiga software collection Aminet.[1] New Line-of-Sight display technique gave more depth to the adventures and weight of the carried items now slowed down the movement.

In 2007 came out a Windows version of the unpublished version 1.75. This version was more of a beta release and it was again in Finnish. This beta featured Amiga demoscene music and it was programmed in PureBasic, which is the official development environment for WoA for now on.

Although WoA is public domain, unlike most roguelike-games its source code was never available in public.

Future[edit]

From the year 2010 Finity Games has been developing the game to its next state. According to the World of Arch, the old game has vastly improved features and functionality, but it still looks like a retro role playing video game. The new version 2.4 was released in April 2012.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Game/role/Woa17b.lha". Aminet. Retrieved 2012-02-16. 

External links[edit]