Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

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Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Crosmando » October 30th, 2018, 12:16 pm

What do you guys rate of the chances of Krome Studios being contracted again by InXile, except this time to make a new official Bard's Tale?
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by miasma » October 30th, 2018, 1:07 pm

I hope it happens. Certainly it would be well-received by members of this forum, as quite a few of us have been suggesting it for a while.

They could keep the engine pretty much the same as what they've been using for the remasters, as far as I'm concerned, but with enhanced graphics and sounds. Don't get me wrong, the graphics and sounds in the remasters are great as updates of the originals, but for a new game, I'd rather see graphics that are more on par with Grimrock or other newer games. And if they could get music of the same quality as what we heard in Barrow's Deep, it would be phenomenal.

I'd also be happy with it being an all-new adventure that doesn't feature a gazillion callbacks to the originals, much like how BT2 stood on its own and didn't have us revisiting Skara Brae, etc. I get why that was done for BT4, but now that we've had that so recently, along with the remasters, we don't need as much nostalgia for next game.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by thebruce » October 30th, 2018, 1:14 pm

Yeah I think that's key - the engine of the remasters is much more in line with a BT sequel than BT4's. A BT 3.5 at the very least could appease a whole lot of classic-BT evangelists who weren't satisfied with BT4. But a full-fledged game with reasonable updates or gameplay progressions as one would expect in a sequel (as opposed to remake/remaster) I think would go over really well. And it doesn't have to be a AAA game. The cost only jumps when you want to enter that realm, but you can have a hugely successful game that doesn't cost millions or top the global charts.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Crosmando » October 30th, 2018, 2:15 pm

miasma wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 1:07 pm
They could keep the engine pretty much the same as what they've been using for the remasters, as far as I'm concerned, but with enhanced graphics and sounds.
I think that would be a good idea, if InXile has done anything really great it's those 2d portraits like in WL2, having ones of that quality but for enemies etc would be great.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by eisberg » October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm

Crosmando wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 12:16 pm
What do you guys rate of the chances of Krome Studios being contracted again by InXile, except this time to make a new official Bard's Tale?
All they did was make the graphics prettier and add in QoL features. So what makes you think they would know how to actually make a game from scratch? They didn't create any of the game play mechanics at all, they didn't create how the game would be played, they didn't create any of the maps, they didn't create the story lines, they only remastered it. Its like saying that a company that remasters a movie would also be good at actually producing and directing a movie.
Last edited by eisberg on October 30th, 2018, 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by thebruce » October 30th, 2018, 3:46 pm

I think everyone believes they should use the engine they created frmo scratch to mimick the original game engine. A new game can be made as a wrapper to that engine.
I don't think the question so much is whether they could build a game from scratch successfully, but whether their game design decisions (story, mechanics, balance, etc) would suffice. I think the only gauge we have of that is how they handle the 'updated' aspects of the remasters, and whether the game plays well and holds its own.
Creating a brand new story and the level designs and whatnot, that would be something we'd have to take a chance on :)

So far as a game design company though, how they interact, adjust, their technical capability and the development process is impressing.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by _noblesse_oblige_ » October 30th, 2018, 9:10 pm

eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
Crosmando wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 12:16 pm
What do you guys rate of the chances of Krome Studios being contracted again by InXile, except this time to make a new official Bard's Tale?
All they did was make the graphics prettier and add in QoL features.
And they did it well, given that there are plenty of ways they could've not done it well.
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
So what makes you think they would know how to actually make a game from scratch?
What makes you think it would be from scratch, given that they already have a full set of mechanics to work with?
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
They didn't create any of the game play mechanics at all, they didn't create how the game would be played, they didn't create any of the maps, they didn't create the story lines, they only remastered it. Its like saying that a company that remasters a movie would also be good at actually producing and directing a movie.
No, it's like saying that a company which had already been given something to work with and did a good job with it would be likely to do a good job at more of something similar.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by eisberg » October 30th, 2018, 11:28 pm

_noblesse_oblige_ wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 9:10 pm
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
Crosmando wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 12:16 pm
What do you guys rate of the chances of Krome Studios being contracted again by InXile, except this time to make a new official Bard's Tale?
All they did was make the graphics prettier and add in QoL features.
And they did it well, given that there are plenty of ways they could've not done it well.
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
So what makes you think they would know how to actually make a game from scratch?
What makes you think it would be from scratch, given that they already have a full set of mechanics to work with?
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
They didn't create any of the game play mechanics at all, they didn't create how the game would be played, they didn't create any of the maps, they didn't create the story lines, they only remastered it. Its like saying that a company that remasters a movie would also be good at actually producing and directing a movie.
No, it's like saying that a company which had already been given something to work with and did a good job with it would be likely to do a good job at more of something similar.
Except for they didn't actually create anything, and you are expecting them to become creators, so no, there is nothing there to show they would likely do a good job at actually creating maps, story line, puzzles.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Lanatir » October 31st, 2018, 12:23 am

eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 11:28 pm
_noblesse_oblige_ wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 9:10 pm
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm


All they did was make the graphics prettier and add in QoL features.
And they did it well, given that there are plenty of ways they could've not done it well.
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
So what makes you think they would know how to actually make a game from scratch?
What makes you think it would be from scratch, given that they already have a full set of mechanics to work with?
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
They didn't create any of the game play mechanics at all, they didn't create how the game would be played, they didn't create any of the maps, they didn't create the story lines, they only remastered it. Its like saying that a company that remasters a movie would also be good at actually producing and directing a movie.
No, it's like saying that a company which had already been given something to work with and did a good job with it would be likely to do a good job at more of something similar.
Except for they didn't actually create anything, and you are expecting them to become creators, so no, there is nothing there to show they would likely do a good job at actually creating maps, story line, puzzles.
It must drive you crazy that people like the remasters better than your favorite baby, hm? Krome is showered with praise everywhere, the remasters have ratings that go through the roof, everyone is basically begging them to keep going, and yet, one voice still tries to devalue their work, and it is telling that this voice comes from someone who still thinks that InXile did a good job with 'Bards Tale 2004 2'.

And you know what? You are lucky there, because it wont happen. Krome will not make another Bards Tale game, and that is pretty much a given, because that would mean that InXile would have to admit that they failed the people who made BT4 a reality and let someone else have a try.

And considering their unability to admit that this atrocity of a game was a failure, im pretty sure they would not like to be put to shame by some amateur developers.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by eisberg » October 31st, 2018, 1:58 am

Lanatir wrote:
October 31st, 2018, 12:23 am
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 11:28 pm
_noblesse_oblige_ wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 9:10 pm


And they did it well, given that there are plenty of ways they could've not done it well.



What makes you think it would be from scratch, given that they already have a full set of mechanics to work with?



No, it's like saying that a company which had already been given something to work with and did a good job with it would be likely to do a good job at more of something similar.
Except for they didn't actually create anything, and you are expecting them to become creators, so no, there is nothing there to show they would likely do a good job at actually creating maps, story line, puzzles.
It must drive you crazy that people like the remasters better than your favorite baby, hm? Krome is showered with praise everywhere, the remasters have ratings that go through the roof, everyone is basically begging them to keep going, and yet, one voice still tries to devalue their work, and it is telling that this voice comes from someone who still thinks that InXile did a good job with 'Bards Tale 2004 2'.

And you know what? You are lucky there, because it wont happen. Krome will not make another Bards Tale game, and that is pretty much a given, because that would mean that InXile would have to admit that they failed the people who made BT4 a reality and let someone else have a try.

And considering their unability to admit that this atrocity of a game was a failure, im pretty sure they would not like to be put to shame by some amateur developers.
I didn't devalue their work at all, rather you guys are giving them credit for things they didn't do at all. They did a good job at making the graphics better, a little less grindy, and adding in the QoL features, which amount to everything they did. They did not design the game, they did not create the storylines, they did not create the classes, they did not create the maps, they did not create the gameplay, they did not create the spells.

Making a good remaster that amounts to mostly graphical and UI changes does not mean they would be good at actually making a Bard's Tale game that you guys want.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by eisberg » October 31st, 2018, 2:10 am

oh, and I highly doubt them getting Krome to make another BT game using the same engine would even be worth the money, given the low amount of people that actually played the trilogy, which no doubt is mostly people who got it for free for backing BT4.

And the developers have admitted to the problems with the games, which is why they have been fixing it through patches and more patches are still on their way, so you saying they can't admit to teh "atrocity of the game was a failure" is absolutely not true at all, cause if they did not admit to the problem then they would have not been making patches and apologizing for those problems.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Lanatir » October 31st, 2018, 3:34 am

If you REALLY think this is about the bugs then look at Pathfinder Kingmaker. This game has 1000 times more bugs than BT4, and still has a higher rating AND thousands of players playing it. And it uses EXACTLY the same game mechanics that Baldurs Gate used, and didnt change ANYTHING. And even though the devs hardly are able to fix the bugs the people STILL play it and love it, and there is 20 to 50 times the amount of people who play it. BECAUSE IT IS FAITHFUL TO THE CLASSICS.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by ZiN » October 31st, 2018, 5:40 am

We can't really tell the game design capabilities of Krome Studios. Remastering a game is one thing, but making a new one is a tough one, especially one that needs to be faithful to the original ones, while improving the formulas. InXile has utterly failed at that, no wonder, they had who knows how many noname contracted teams working on it and a design lead, who looked at Heartstone and Skyrim for inspiration and most likely has never played a dungeon-crawler. Bah, I always get grumpy, thinking about how great a dungeon-crawler could have been made, with $1.5M.

So, yeah, while Krome is doing a great job with the remastering (used to be perfect until BT2's missing art) we really can't tell what they could do with BT4. Better than InXile did, with $1.5M, that's for sure. As opposed to InXile, they seem to have the right mindset, but in the end it all comes down to the game designer(s).

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by miasma » October 31st, 2018, 5:53 am

eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 3:41 pm
Crosmando wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 12:16 pm
What do you guys rate of the chances of Krome Studios being contracted again by InXile, except this time to make a new official Bard's Tale?
All they did was make the graphics prettier and add in QoL features. So what makes you think they would know how to actually make a game from scratch? They didn't create any of the game play mechanics at all, they didn't create how the game would be played, they didn't create any of the maps, they didn't create the story lines, they only remastered it. Its like saying that a company that remasters a movie would also be good at actually producing and directing a movie.
That's definitely a fair point.
We have no idea about their storytelling skills or their skills at balancing gameplay. If a new BT game ever gets made with the tools Krome created, it might be best to enlist the help of some people who are proven to have such skills. We know Inxile has people like that available to them, so that shouldn't be an issue.

Of course, the original BT games (particularly 1 & 2) were pretty feeble in terms of story, but that was par for the course back then. We all just kind of accepted the simplistic premise of "kill the evil wizard." These days, the standard for storytelling has gone up quite a bit, though, and a new BT game would have to offer something with a bit more depth, even if it's intended as a bit of a throwback.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by thebruce » October 31st, 2018, 6:40 am

The one thing no one mentioned yet though is that Krome now has many many months of hands-on development specifically of the BT engine, and are actually the best to design a game within that framework. They've been interacting with the hardcore fans to understand what gameplay works and doesn't as they choose what to 'enhance' for the standard non-Legacy mode. And no one actually knows what will or won't work because everyone's playing with QOL vs game mechanic changes, and we see those exchanges as gameplay tidbits are tweaked in the threads.

Honestly, if anyone were to create a new BT game in Krome's engine, I would say Krome are most qualified (not just because they (re)made the engine). That includes hiring the proper talent for development of aspects like the story, plot, artwork, etc. I but honestly think that Krome has "got it". They're in the zone, as it were. No, they haven't CREATED a Bard's Tale game from scratch (not just the programming, which they did do from scratch for BT:R), but they have been in the heart and soul of the Bard's Tale community since they first opened up a debugger to track the game mechanics of various emulated classics and observed what WE like.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Spectralshade » October 31st, 2018, 11:51 am

Lanatir wrote:
October 31st, 2018, 12:23 am
eisberg wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 11:28 pm
_noblesse_oblige_ wrote:
October 30th, 2018, 9:10 pm


And they did it well, given that there are plenty of ways they could've not done it well.



What makes you think it would be from scratch, given that they already have a full set of mechanics to work with?



No, it's like saying that a company which had already been given something to work with and did a good job with it would be likely to do a good job at more of something similar.
Except for they didn't actually create anything, and you are expecting them to become creators, so no, there is nothing there to show they would likely do a good job at actually creating maps, story line, puzzles.
It must drive you crazy that people like the remasters better than your favorite baby, hm? Krome is showered with praise everywhere, the remasters have ratings that go through the roof, everyone is basically begging them to keep going, and yet, one voice still tries to devalue their work, and it is telling that this voice comes from someone who still thinks that InXile did a good job with 'Bards Tale 2004 2'.

And you know what? You are lucky there, because it wont happen. Krome will not make another Bards Tale game, and that is pretty much a given, because that would mean that InXile would have to admit that they failed the people who made BT4 a reality and let someone else have a try.

And considering their unability to admit that this atrocity of a game was a failure, im pretty sure they would not like to be put to shame by some amateur developers.
I miss a 'thumbs up' option for your post, Lanatir.

Well said.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Drool » October 31st, 2018, 1:28 pm

ZiN wrote:
October 31st, 2018, 5:40 am
We can't really tell the game design capabilities of Krome Studios.
We can't? They've made close to two dozen games.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by _noblesse_oblige_ » October 31st, 2018, 7:10 pm

Lanatir wrote:
October 31st, 2018, 3:34 am
If you REALLY think this is about the bugs then look at Pathfinder Kingmaker. This game has 1000 times more bugs than BT4, and still has a higher rating AND thousands of players playing it. And it uses EXACTLY the same game mechanics that Baldurs Gate used, and didnt change ANYTHING. And even though the devs hardly are able to fix the bugs the people STILL play it and love it, and there is 20 to 50 times the amount of people who play it. BECAUSE IT IS FAITHFUL TO THE CLASSICS.
Cheers, Lanatir. A succinct, to-the-point paragraph that sums it up nicely.

If you have a core audience of appreciative fans, the tolerance for bugs is much higher. inXile didn't even know their audience for the Barrows Deep game and threw a bunch of "think different" ideas at the wall and hoped that they stuck to it.

Krome has had a number of bugs in the remasters and has also made some decisions that some players find controversial, but they are still loved because they have a good connection to their audience.
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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by eisberg » October 31st, 2018, 10:13 pm

Lanatir wrote:
October 31st, 2018, 3:34 am
If you REALLY think this is about the bugs then look at Pathfinder Kingmaker. This game has 1000 times more bugs than BT4, and still has a higher rating AND thousands of players playing it. And it uses EXACTLY the same game mechanics that Baldurs Gate used, and didnt change ANYTHING. And even though the devs hardly are able to fix the bugs the people STILL play it and love it, and there is 20 to 50 times the amount of people who play it. BECAUSE IT IS FAITHFUL TO THE CLASSICS.
Because those kind of game mechanics, talking about Pathfinder, are still relevant today and are not archaic and simple. The game mechanics of BT1-3 are archaic and simple, it uses way to much randomization, and takes way too much away from the player. The BT1-3 mechanics will not sell very well now days, it would not be anywhere close to the type of reception that Baulder's Gate formula has.

Baulder's Gate remsater, peak players at 3756, current players is at 299, and the remaster released almost 6 years ago.
Bard's Tale Trilogy, peak players 690, current players at 87, and it had a recent update for BT2, released 2.5 months ago.

Baulders Gate 2, Neverwinter Nights, show much higher numbers than BT Trilogy, as well. And none of those games had 33+k copies given away for free like BT Trilogy did. There is no real indication that BTT really sold all that much beyond the free 33k copies, yet the enhanced Infinity engine games ended up selling in the hundreds of thousand copies.

You would think that if the BT formula was still relevant and popular today, like the infinty engine type games, that it would have done much better in sales, but clearly they didn't.

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Re: Krome Studios, our only hope for a "true" BT game?

Post by Lanatir » November 1st, 2018, 12:09 am

The fact that you dont even know how to spell Baldurs Gate tells me a lot.

And there is one thing you are right about: The BT 1-3 Game mechanic were archaic. So, They could have been improved.
But not turned into a puzzle based action adventure with trading card combat and light rpg elements.

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