Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Twelve Games of Christmas #9 – The Witch and the Warrior

Posted by Rampant Coyote on December 21, 2010

I guess it’s okay to call indie RPG developer Eridani Games a “Scottish Developer.” Founder Jill Shiels is from Scotland, and according to her forum signature is still there. However, with many indie studios,¬† a game company may technically be a one-man or one-woman operation, but the games are made by the labor of many friends, contractors, and content providers. A quick look at the credits for this game suggests Eridani is no exception. The use of the Internet is not only how indies achieve the distribution of their games, but it is an critical development and communications tool. Development “teams” may span the globe, covering many nationalities and walks of life. Many times, co-developers may never have met face-to-face. Trying to pin a development team down to a single nationality or characterization is tricky.

Once upon a time, this kind of mix might have been unlikely, and the probability of success laughable. But in modern indie game development, it’s becoming commonplace.

I wonder how much of this real-world mixture of talents and experience¬† provided inspiration (if only subconsciously) for Eridani’s newest game, The Witch and the Warrior. The game is about an unlikely pairing of people from different islands, and traditionally feuding cultures.¬† The world has endured decades of warfare between the folk who possess the powers of magic, and those who do not. The latest queen, Queen Clarise, has put an official end to the strife, but in spite of years of peace there remains a tension between the two classes of people.

Nowhere is it as bad as it is on the island of Vester, where the game begins. You play a young female witch, and find yourself the subject of prejudice, anger, and fear tempered only by royal decree. Not that you have any significant magical powers – being of a witch’s family is bad enough even if you personally pose no threat. The townspeople appear quick enough to buy potions from your family, but otherwise tolerance is limited.

It’s an interesting situation. The background of prejudice and persecution is not overwhelming, and doesn’t seem to be making any sort of real-world statement. The game steers well clear of the darker potential of the theme, but it was still interesting to play through the first part of the game as a persecuted “poor little witch girl.” Naturally, as the title suggests, you team up later on with another teenage girl, who would be an enemy by tradition. And – so far as I’ve played – things kick off fairly conventionally from there for this style of game. It’s a very approachable jRPG-style with an obvious eye towards being girl-friendly. There are three difficulty levels to choose from at the beginning of the game, and it promises some very interesting choices that may be good or evil, selfish or selfless, with multiple endings.

It’s a cute, interesting little game, and like Eridani’s first game, Ella’s Hope, could make a very good introductory RPG for players who might get intimidated by other RPGs.

You can try The Witch and the Warrior here.

Filed Under: Game Announcements - Comments: Comments are off for this article

Comments are closed.