Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Deathfire – New Screenshots and Reasons for Optimism

Posted by Rampant Coyote on October 7, 2013

Wow, way to go, Guido. Way to pressure me into stepping it up a notch… 🙂


Seriously, guys. Deathfire: Ruins of Nethermore sounds like it’s pretty close to head-to-head competition with my game – we are going after exactly the same audience, IMO.  And you know what?

I hope he sells a million copies.

I hope we both do.

Okay, to be honest, I’d love to sell a million-and-a-half to his million, but it’s all good. Seriously. This is the kind of thing that just thrills me to no end. This is AWESOME.


Why is it so awesome? It’s only screenshots and words on paper. Well, here’s the deal: I make the kinds of games I want to play. I chose Frayed Knights when and how I did in no small part as a response to the death of this style of RPG: First-person, party-based, with turn-based combat. I LOVE that this kind of game is now making a comeback. I welcome it. I am thrilled to be a part of it.

While the games may now not be in the AAA big-name release category that they once were, I don’t think there’s any reason they can’t be just as awesome as ever – and more so. While we may not command AAA budgets, even compared to the era (adjusting for inflation), we do have access to tools and technology today – not to mention more profitable distribution systems – to allow us to run leaner & meaner than ever.


Now, nobody’s going to give us a prize for outshining a twenty-year-old game, and nobody’s expecting that. And I am certainly not about to gush too much over Deathfire on the basis of screenshots and some blog posts that say the right kind of things, even for a guy who has Henkel’s history. But after many, many years of what the RPG Codex folks like to call “decline” of the genre, I’m seeing reasons to be optimistic. This game is one of ’em.

Granted, I’m generally an optimistic guy. I am the kind of poor schmuck who sees his hopes get dashed, repeatedly, yet still keeps hoping. So take my opinion with grain of salt, or a small Siberian salt mine. Whatever. But I’m also the kind of guy who can overlook some flaws in a game and just try and enjoy it for what it is. I’m really looking forward to this one. And I really do hope it sells a million copies. That only means there’ll be sequels and more awesome games like it.


Filed Under: General - Comments: 7 Comments to Read

  • Infinitron said,

    You’re both also competing with Ubisoft’s Might & Magic X. Pressure…

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Yup, definitely. and a few other games I’m not thinking of right now. But really, we’re competing against Skyrim, Fallout 4, the new Dragon Age, Wasteland 2, Project Eternity, tons of indie games, Grimrock 1 & 2, every Might & Magic and Wizardry and Bard’s Tale ever made, ourselves, all the Final Fantasy titles, etc. So competition is really nothing new.

    It’s just that these 3 games (plus some indie titles) are in the niche-within-a-niche. But it’s okay. I *suspect* that our games should be different enough and fun enough to warrant fans buying all three.

  • jwmeep said,

    Oh hey, Guido re-tweeted your blog post.

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Nice of him. Not that this was a deep post or anything. 🙂

  • Bob said,

    I liked your game a lot. But I absolutely love the RoA trilogy and that trilogy remains my favorite series (but Sir-Tech remains my favorite developer; buying games with the Sir-Tech label was always a safe bet). Granted, I think the Star Wars prequels are better than the orginal trilogy, so my taste may not jive with the many. I am also looking forward to MMX, but I was never a big MM fan. I bought world of xeen and tried and tried to get into but couldn’t. No one really talks about the two Buck Rogers rpgs but those games where by far the best SSI games in my opinion; the rpg system (and even the stories) were light years beyond the D&D games. I did like Dark Sun and EoB more than most games, but only 3.5 made D&D have a “good” mechanics and not completely terrible character creation.

    I also dislike immensely the IE games. I would say almost all RTwP games are awful and unplayable but Aarklash had better combat then most TB games (and Darklands was a great game besides its terrible combat).

    Well, I have no idea why I am writing this so will stop now. But keep on keeping on and I definitely am buying all three games mentioned above.

  • BarryB said,

    But really, we’re competing against Skyrim…

    Perhaps I’m missing something, here, but how do you figure this? Skyrim’s got very different gameplay, a different combat system, and probably a different audience–unless you’re putting in one box “all people who play fantasy games with stats on the computer.”

    What you’re competing with are turn-based tactical fantasy games whose party members parody the usual cast of characters. Kinda limits the field, and makes it easier to keep your head high, your shoulders back, and your smile secure in the knowledge that you aren’t fighting for attention against the entire computerized gaming world. 😉

    I think you’ll do well.

  • Xenovore said,

    @ BarryB: No they are definitely competing with AAA RPGs like Skyrim. If I’m looking for a new RPG to play, which am I going to choose, the newest release in a well-known milieu, or a little known, no track record, indie RPG? Yeah, probably not the latter (even if it is half the price.) I’m going to purchase what I know will be a solid RPG experience, not gamble on an unknown.

    Of course, if I’ve already purchased and played a game like Skyrim, then the chances go up that I’ll go looking to purchase another RPG, and maybe I do spot some random indie RPG and check it out. Except now my expectations are for something on par with Skyrim, so when I see some screenshots of said random indie RPG, and they look like crap (comparatively), I’m going to have second thoughts. (Particularly if I have previously purchased some other indie RPG, only to discover that not only are the visuals sub-par, but the game-play is lacking as well. Avencast comes to mind.)

    And, although less directly, there’s competition from other game genres as well. E.g. I like FPS games in addition to RPGs. So, again, given the choice between a potentially crufty indie RPG, and a polished shooter, I’ll choose the latter.