The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Announcements & media coverage pertaining to Bard's Tale IV. Only moderators & inXile can make new threads on this forum.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by jrodman » June 19th, 2015, 10:23 am

Personally, this framing doesn't particularly excite me, but it doesn't worry me either. I kind of like the adventurers being underground in both senses.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by sear » June 19th, 2015, 10:52 am

Themadcow wrote:I like the idea of Monte Cook's involvement, at first I was a little worried incase this displayed a further move towards story driven / character interaction territory but if he's primarily involved in getting dungeon setting and game-world feel right then it's golden.
Monte Cook's involvement isn't on a systems design level, he's helping us design a dungeon for the game.
Vainamoinen wrote:Uhm, maybe it should at least be mentioned that the first part of this musical track heavily draws on motifs from Dvorak's Slavonic Dance No. 6...??
That was the case in the original game's song too. :shock:
Tets wrote:i know you are busy with the BT54 kickstarter and Torment and the GOTY Edition.. but could you upload a short HD Video of the running W2 GOTY Edition, so that people outside of E3 can see it too? I would be most interessted to see a little bit of character creation/system, combat system and graphic improvements in general. :)
We will have something to share at some point soon, don't worry. :)

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by thebruce » June 19th, 2015, 11:49 am

There should be a plot that pits [oppresive] Christianity against [non-oppresive] Christianity. Because man, it's easy to generalize and stereotype. =/

Anyway as for general plot, I never really considered BT1-3 to be anything specific to Scotland aside from the name Skara Brae. It was always a fantasy environment. I hope the story in BT4 isn't suddenly and inexplicably Scotland-focused. Stylized? I can handle that. But I feel like having Bard's Tale story suddenly be Scot-heavy would be way out in left field...
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by ZiN » June 19th, 2015, 12:29 pm

Priest4hire wrote:I can't help but notice that Michael Cranford is Christian and the game features a blatant caricature of the medieval Christian church. It almost feels like a deliberate jab at the original creator of The Bard's Tale.
I wonder what Michael has to say about this, an update featuring him would be awesome! Inxile, please contact him (if you dare)!
dorkboy wrote:My interpretation of the story snippet was quite different from yours.
I'd like to hear your thoughts about it then.
Crosmando wrote:Actually, real-life Orkney (where Skara Brae is) actually does have a history of [oppressive] Christianity...
Actually that's a very interesting and complex subject, i'm always fascinated by history like that. As a Bard's Tale background story i have several problems with it though:

- The BT games had absolutely nothing to do with Gaelic/Celtic/Pictish/etc. history/folklore, save for the sole name "Skara Brae" in BT1 and 3.
- The city itself - as depicted in the game - wasn't even reminiscent of a neolithic Scottish settlement. It was the archetypical medieval, (renaissance even) European city, with a good deal of high-fantasy thrown in. (see map of BT1 Skara Brae)
- Therefore it would be extremely inconsistent with the previous games, that it's now suddenly a historical settlement rebuilt by some invading religious fanatics. Especially for BT2 players, which didn't feature the place at all.
- If they want to go for historical (or historically accurate) stuff, then don't call it Bard's Tale IV, as it is not a sequel to the Bard's Tale trilogy. Bard's tale doesn't take place in the environs of the Orkney Isles, but in unbelievable fantasy places like Tangramayne, Dargoth's Tower, the Violet Mountain in Lucencia, the machinist world of Kinestia, or the time and dimension hopping Tarmitia, just to name a few.
- If they really want to go for historical stuff and call it Bard's Tale IV, then have Michael Cranford, who is an expert on both The Bard's Tale as a game and (western) religious history, carefully oversee the whole process.
thebruce wrote:Anyway as for general plot, I never really considered BT1-3 to be anything specific to Scotland aside from the name Skara Brae. It was always a fantasy environment. I hope the story in BT4 isn't suddenly and inexplicably Scotland-focused. Stylized? I can handle that. But I feel like having Bard's Tale story suddenly be Scot-heavy would be way out in left field...
Absolutely right. I expected no less of a real, old-school BT player like you, The Bruce!
I wouldn't mind some Scot-heavy parts though, after all 396 Scottisc/Gaelic berserkers/brawlers are pretty heavy! :)

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Drool » June 19th, 2015, 2:11 pm

Priest4hire wrote:People forgot major events just 150 years later.
Hm. 150 years ago was 1865. How well do "kids these days" remember the American Civil War? And I know I celebrate the climbing of the Matterhorn every July 14th.

Being more serious, though, in a world without Wikipedia or Google, 150 years is a very long time, and I can see people forgetting things. After all, how much of 1715 would the people of 1865 know? Especially common people who aren't going to be literate or have much in the way of free time to brush up on their history. Yes, it's a compressed time frame, and I think 200 or 300 years would work better (and there's probably no reason they can't shift the time), but I'm willing to handwave that.


As for the last group being gods, that can be danced around a couple ways. Nobody believes them, they ascended right then so never told their tale... hell, outside of the Refuge Camp, you hardly saw anybody. After all, Skara Brae in BT3 (at least, the "prime dimension") is a post apocalyptic scenario; Tarjan destroyed the place and killed everyone. It's entirely possible that the faceless survivors were more worried about surviving than the heroes saving the multiverse. I could totally see that the final impact to the commoner was that there were fewer monsters -- many of the surface enemies were animals or mostly natural things -- and the stars at night looked different.

"Hey, Bob. Them stars look different?"
"Shut up and help me mulch this field, Ray."
thebruce wrote:There should be a plot that pits [oppresive] Christianity against [non-oppresive] Christianity. Because man, it's easy to generalize and stereotype.
Clearly the team needs to get together for a viewing of Dragonslayer.

No, seriously, they should. Aside from Vermithrax Pejorative being freaking badass, the setting is that intersection of the rise of Christianity and the decline of paganism. It's a lot smarter than it has any right to be.
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Lucius » June 19th, 2015, 2:15 pm

ZiN wrote:Michael Crawford stuff
No. Keep him far, far away from this project. Last thing we need is him holding our KS pledges hostage.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by ZiN » June 19th, 2015, 3:16 pm

Sorry Drool, but i can't accept your arguments to defend the shitty backstory. Sure today's young are brainwashed enough by mass media and other more subtle and insidious means that they couldn't care less about the past, besides not having time for it either.
But back then they haven't had TV and internet and as they weren't bombarded/overloaded with information on a daily basis, they remembered the past much better. At least from where i come from our great grandfathers, or anyone who basically lived in a rural area knows much more than you would think, especially about the night sky (aka constellations). Don't underestimate "simple" folk who lived their whole lives beneath the stars, close to nature.
Then add magic and fantasy to that with magic mouths, bard songs and everything else, and that story totally doesn't make sense.
Well i already feel like the (underground) 4 against the Fatherites (?). Lol, bring it on!
Lucius wrote:
ZiN wrote:Michael Crawford stuff
No. Keep him far, far away from this project. Last thing we need is him holding our KS pledges hostage.
At least he wouldn't fuck up, or should i dare to say rape The Bard's Tale franchise. After all it's his own creation. Of course they have to sell the "product" too, so i guess they have to make compromises...

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Tets » June 19th, 2015, 4:39 pm

Doom 3 was no real sequel to Doom 1 + 2 because they totally changend the gameplay (dumbed down mass market console kiddies keycard mechanic; you can freely look arround with the mouse, real 3D wtf?!). And the plot (there are so many inconsitencies to D1 & II, totally story focused compared to the first two parts, and NPCs... really?). Im sure they will completly destroy the franchise with part 4. :lol: sry guys ;)

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by jrodman » June 19th, 2015, 4:43 pm

Zin: I think your comments would be stronger if you wrote in mind of the reality that your reactions to what has been posted are indeed specific to yourself. I don't think anyone is trying to tell you that your reactions are invalid, but describing the "shitty backstory" and the "rape" of the franchise seem overly strong, even to me.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by jrodman » June 19th, 2015, 4:46 pm

Tets wrote:Doom 3...
I'm not sure that's the strongest example. A lot of people did feel that Doom 3 failed to capture what was good about Doom 1&2. Certainly it was not the exact mouse controls nor the exact type of story, because at its core DOOM was a shootem up with a little bit of map exploration. However, it's kind stronger as an example of a game sequel which moved far away from its heritage and also was a much weaker game than its forbears.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Drool » June 19th, 2015, 5:23 pm

ZiN wrote:But back then they haven't had TV and internet and as they weren't bombarded/overloaded with information on a daily basis, they remembered the past much better.
Yes and no. My point was also that they had more pressing matters than the adventures of a group of dudes did back in the day. Especially considering 90% of what they did was in a different reality. A subsistence farmer outside Skara Brae would probably know that some people killed "that crazy priest" in the Temple of the Mad God, but would they even understand brokering a peace deal with Urmech?

Again, I freely admit that the 150 year window is a little tight, especially for a new religion to gain such a foothold and to gain such political power. But if they made it 300 years? Or 500? Besides, it looks like it's a somewhat inconsequential detail to the plot itself, so they could easily use Find/Replace to turn all the 150s into 500s.

Of course, I also would like to point out that all we have here is, essentially, the blurb on the back of a book. Presumably things will be more fleshed out as time goes on, so there may be a very good reason for so much to change in just 150 years. I don't think that's the case, but it could be. Personally, I hardly view it as a solid figure. To me, it's more like a way of saying, "a lot of time has passed". If the representation of "a lot of time" needs to be tweaked, I'm sure it can be.
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by IHaveHugeNick » June 19th, 2015, 5:43 pm

150 years is not tight at all. We're not talking about modern world where 150 years is two old ladies living back to back. Lower life expectancy means many more generations pass, the stories get naturally distorted after many years of mouth-to-mouth distribution, and eventually nobody remembers fuck all of what actually occurred. You know, like the Bible, where there's hundreds of inconsistencies in New Testament even though it was supposedly written by eye-witnesses, and preserved with great care as a sacred text, and not some gradpa campfire tales of events that are irrelevant to an average peasant.

Also, the idea that Cranford is somehow the ultimate authority on everything Bard's Tale, is rather hilarious. The man hasn't even been in the industry in 30 years.
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by dorkboy » June 19th, 2015, 9:19 pm

Hm, double post.
Last edited by dorkboy on June 19th, 2015, 9:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by dorkboy » June 19th, 2015, 9:20 pm

ZiN wrote:
dorkboy wrote:My interpretation of the story snippet was quite different from yours.
I'd like to hear your thoughts about it then.
Sure. Not much of an interpretation, but it differs in that I didn't immediately see the Church of the Sword Father as the arch villain - more of an annoying and largely irrelevant antagonist that stands in the way of recapturing the magic of the past. A metaphor for the stale creative climate of today, compared to, say, the wild and wondrous eighties and nineties. The party, which in a manner of speaking is living in exile, will then have to take it upon their own shoulders to set things right.
That's just an interpretation. It could very well be that it's really all about historical accuracy in the 10th century Orkney islands. :?

There is a difference between a common theme, a common trope and a cliché, though. ;)
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Zombra » June 19th, 2015, 9:30 pm

Hmm! So Morgan can do schlock fantasy! Perfect, better than I hoped for :)
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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by ZiN » June 19th, 2015, 10:53 pm

Hmm yeah Mark Morgan can do... although it's a conversion of a conversion, he will just do fine. The music will be the strong(est, by far) point of the game i'm pretty certain of that.

Yes, my points are strongly exaggerated for emphasis, it's strange how people still miss them.
For those who're saying stuff like 150 years is a lot, commoners forget/don't care about their past and that oral tradition, and legends are irrelevant, you are very wrong i'm sorry. Anyone who knows a bit of history should see that; they were and are a major source for historians, but i say don't get into an argument with me about this here, it's not worth it.

Let's just say that every single thing i heard from this campaign so far, makes me believe this will be even worse than WL1 → WL2. It's strange though, 90% of the time i'm an optimist.
IHaveHugeNick wrote:Also, the idea that Cranford is somehow the ultimate authority on everything Bard's Tale, is rather hilarious. The man hasn't even been in the industry in 30 years.
It's not more hilarious than say Lucas being the authority on Star Wars, or JVC on M&M. Not being in the industry for 30 years is exactly the reason i want him on board. And that's why Fargo should want him on-board too, or at least contact him for an interview, stretch goal, etc. That's my old-school™ opinion.
dorkboy wrote:That's just an interpretation. It could very well be that it's really all about historical accuracy in the 10th century Orkney islands.
Your interpretation sounds fine, quite interesting we'll see how it will turn out. But for the love of God, leave the 10th century Orkney Isles alone, they have nothing to do with The Bard's Tale!

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Priest4hire » June 20th, 2015, 1:02 am

IHaveHugeNick wrote:150 years is not tight at all. We're not talking about modern world where 150 years is two old ladies living back to back. Lower life expectancy means many more generations pass, the stories get naturally distorted after many years of mouth-to-mouth distribution, and eventually nobody remembers fuck all of what actually occurred. You know, like the Bible, where there's hundreds of inconsistencies in New Testament even though it was supposedly written by eye-witnesses, and preserved with great care as a sacred text, and not some gradpa campfire tales of events that are irrelevant to an average peasant.
Say, did you know that the man who began Christian monasticism, Anthony the Great, lived to be 105? Life expectancy was lower, but a lot of that was child mortality. Lots of people lived into their 60s, 70s and 80s. And just to be clear, you're saying that by 300AD or so, everyone thought that the New Testament was made up? Cause the story isn't that the past has been distorted or mythologized but that the people literally don't believe those events even happened. And it's not some random event on the other side of the world. Tarjan destroyed the very city the new Skara Brae is built upon and named after. Those events might be embellished but to forget them is Darwin award level stupidity.

Of course they have writing and there would be documents. Possibly even writings by one of the former main characters who lived through those events. But also remember that in the middle ages Mnemonics was highly developed. One of the jobs of a bard is keeping history alive through their craft, and the aforementioned mnemonics would allow them to memorize hours and even days worth of material. This game is called The Bard's Tale, but I guess they're really damn crap at their job if the can't even keep major, local events relevant. Oh, and exactly why would a peasant be uninterested in hearing the story of how the mad god wiped out the old Skara Brae. That sounds kind of awesome, and peasant loved stories. Why wouldn't they?
ZiN wrote:But for the love of God, leave the 10th century Orkney Isles alone, they have nothing to do with The Bard's Tale!
Actually, why not bring some of it in? Good ideas a good regardless of where they come from. Consider that story about the conversion. As told, it's missing some of the best parts. So this Viking, who happened to be the king of Norway, named Olav Tryggvasson converts to Christianity. If you know anything about the Viking conversion, then you'll realize this guy was Christian in name only. First generation Vikings tended to just slot Christ into their mythology and call it a day. So Olav is this character that runs around and does the whole convert or die thing to other Vikings. Because he's a Viking. And he comes to Orkney and straight up tell their leader, Sigurd the Stout, that either they get baptized or he raze the land. So they do. But seriously, how converted do you think they were? Cause then Olav takes a hostage so he can squeeze them for tribute and leaves. Hostage dies, and tribute dries up and the 'converted' Sigurd continues on exactly as he had before. So much for God fearing.

This isn't a story about oppression, it's about flamboyant characters doing Viking worthy deeds. Which also tells you it's probably just a story.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Tets » June 20th, 2015, 3:34 am

in the story posted in the update there is no explicit reference to christianity.. just sayin..

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Lucius » June 20th, 2015, 6:29 am

Drool wrote:
ZiN wrote:But back then they haven't had TV and internet and as they weren't bombarded/overloaded with information on a daily basis, they remembered the past much better.
Yes and no. My point was also that they had more pressing matters than the adventures of a group of dudes did back in the day. Especially considering 90% of what they did was in a different reality. A subsistence farmer outside Skara Brae would probably know that some people killed "that crazy priest" in the Temple of the Mad God, but would they even understand brokering a peace deal with Urmech?

Again, I freely admit that the 150 year window is a little tight, especially for a new religion to gain such a foothold and to gain such political power. But if they made it 300 years? Or 500? Besides, it looks like it's a somewhat inconsequential detail to the plot itself, so they could easily use Find/Replace to turn all the 150s into 500s.

Of course, I also would like to point out that all we have here is, essentially, the blurb on the back of a book. Presumably things will be more fleshed out as time goes on, so there may be a very good reason for so much to change in just 150 years. I don't think that's the case, but it could be. Personally, I hardly view it as a solid figure. To me, it's more like a way of saying, "a lot of time has passed". If the representation of "a lot of time" needs to be tweaked, I'm sure it can be.
They can't change the time frame. Skara Brae is in the process of rebuilding. Jump forward 300-500 years and that doesn't make sense anymore. If they change the time table then they also have to change the state of the city.

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Re: The Bard's Tale Update 9: Mangar, Lagoth, Tarjan and…Monte Cook?

Post by Tets » June 20th, 2015, 6:39 am

I think Lovecraft always did a good job mixing facts with fiction. So im not in general worried about stories mixing facts with fiction. I dont see a problem in general, using old scotish myths, folklore, historic facts, and fantasy.

i think in general it would be a solid start.. people dont believe in the old gods and monsters, and now they are coming back. It starts with a world we know and ends in something completly different.

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