And on my free time I…

Hello!

I just finished my latest “flavor text” for the game I’m making and I feel like sharing it.

First, some background:

Together with a couple of friends, I’ve been working on making a browser-based video game. Its current title is Throne of Caelum: Pillarfall.

To make an extraordinarily long story short (which I will go into more detail in a later post) this is a fantasy warfare strategy game that you can play in your browser without downloading it. There are quite a few of these already online, so it is a crowded market. Some good examples are Tribal Wars and Grepolis by the company Innogames, if you’re curious.

We’re trying to make our game better than the competition. One of the ways we hope to do this is by making an immersive game world with a story on par with the best role-playing video games out there (some of which have better plots than the best novels, in my opinion). Even though Pillarfall is not an RPG, we think it would add a lot to the game by making a good story to go along with the actual gameplay. As the head of content creation, this is one of my jobs.

In our game, you can train units of warriors to send out in armies to battle other players. There are a number of Kingdoms (teams) to choose from and each of these has 25 unique military units. I’m making a “flavor text” to accompany the description of each of these units. A flavor text is basically an entertaining description or short story that gives background information to the players instead of useful game statistics.

My latest flavor text belongs to the Outcast Lowborn, the weakest unit of the Planar Kingdom. In short, the Planar are a race of magical, power-hungry people bent on world domination. They are evil, have blue-green flames as eyes, and are generally badass. Here ya go:

Outcast Lowborn

“Novanis tuen’ Vaneas, Flame of Ren, enter into the runes and prove your Birth.” The voice of the Gatekeeper rumbled down the Proving Hall and crashed into Novanis’ mind. Compelled as surely as if he had been shoved, he stepped into the circle of runes.

He tried to stop shaking. This was the culminating event of his fifteen years. This trial of magical power, this Proving, would decide his place in Planar society. If he did well, he would be allowed to advance in the Planar pursuit of power. If he did poorly, he would be cast out.

Novanis knelt into the runic circle, his quivering hands held outward from his body, palms up. Then he began. The air shimmered about him in waves of magical heat. Blue-green flames erupted from his palms at his voiced command. The runes around him glowed a bright white. The floor trembled. Seconds later, it was over. Sweating and breathing heavily, Novanis felt weak. Weak from his Proving, and weak from despair. He knew that it was not enough.

The Gatekeeper shifted slightly on his crystal throne as he pointed a long finger at the young Planar. “By the Authority of the Ring, the Gatekeepers deem your Birth to be Low. You are stripped of Name and Flame. Begone.”

The flames of his eyes dimmed as the nameless Lowborn was escorted from the Proving Hall. He was to be sent out to the front lines at the next deployment. He would not last long.


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5 thoughts on “And on my free time I…

  1. Let me know if you want me to paste more flavor texts and other short stories from the game in later posts. Though I want to post only a fraction of them until we’re publicly testing the game. I don’t want to give everything away = )

  2. This is cool! I really like the heavy feel you give the “flavor text”… I don’t know if this is just me but I think it needs some more detail, like what exactly happened during the Proving? But of course, that might be part of other stories.
    Thanks for sharing 🙂

  3. Thank you Beth! I felt the same way when writing it, but I’ve got to keep it short since it will be accompanying a picture and game statistics on the same small screen. And yes, I will be doing some short stories where I can get into more detail. That may be one of them in the future 🙂

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