Titan Quest Designer Diary #7 - Looking Back and Summing Up Titan Quest

As Titan Quest nears completion, producer Jeff Goodsill sums up what the developers at Iron Lore have accomplished.

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Fans of Diablo-style action role-playing games are awaiting next month's release of Titan Quest, the debut game from Iron Lore to be published by THQ. Titan Quest is set in the ancient world of Greece, Egypt, and Asia, and your job is to gear up with armor and weapons and cut through countless monsters and opponents, all inspired by popular mythology. In our final designer diary for the game, producer and general manager Jeff Goodsill sums up what the team at Iron Lore has accomplished. And when you're done, make sure to try out the single-player demo if you haven't already.

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The Final Chapter

By Jeff Goodsill
General Manager and Producer, Iron Lore

Exploration, fighting, and rewards are the three pillars of gameplay in Titan Quest. We have provided the player with an opportunity to explore a vast, richly detailed world that starts in a small Greek village and takes you on a journey through numerous ancient and well-known lands. On this journey you encounter many of the Titan's minions. These monsters have different behaviors that provide exciting, challenging, and varied combat situations. The risk of death and injury is high, but with great risk comes great reward. The heart of our reward system is the equipment you find and buy, and the experience you gain as you defeat ever-more-difficult creatures, perhaps even a Titan himself.

We have concentrated on providing a compelling story that takes place in an immersive, realistic, and beautiful world of ancient Greece, Egypt, and the Far East. There are 60 to 90 hours of gameplay, broken into three levels of difficulty (normal, epic, and legendary), which we expect to take approximately 20 to 30 hours each. These levels can be played individually or in groups of up to six, and the epic and legendary games will provide unique loot and a special encounter or two. While some will feel compelled to go through Titan Quest in a linear fashion to get to the next unique boss or complete the next main quest, others will want to explore the multiple side areas, side quests, and numerous dangerous caves. No matter what your style of adventure is, we have provided for it.

At last, Titan Quest is almost done.
At last, Titan Quest is almost done.

The world is rich with monsters and creatures that have been inspired by mythology, such as satyrs, harpies, centaurs, gorgons, Minotaurs, and cyclopes. There are stone statues that come to life and traps to avoid. With more than 80 different creatures, and multiple variations of each, you can expect to find something new at every turn. We have more than 20 key boss and miniboss encounters, each having specialized skills that will require cunning, patience, and skill to overcome. You will find it advantageous to keep a variety of skills, equipment, and tactics in reserve.

You might remember the scene from The Matrix when Neo and Trinity need some equipment and Tank provides what seems like an endless supply of guns. You too will have access to a vast array of individually crafted swords, bows, helms, greaves, clubs, maces, spears, bracelets, rings, staves, amulets, and matched suits of armor. When combined with magical attributes, relics, and charms, the result is more than 1 million pieces of equipment. However, equipment is only part of the story. With each level you gain you have access to an ever-increasing number of skills. We have 160 unique magical skills that are divided between eight skill masteries. As you play Titan Quest you will choose two masteries in which to specialize. Each mastery has 20 skills, and each skill has between six and 20 levels. The combination of the skill and the loot system provides rewards that would make even an emperor jealous.

We are stoked about the support we are offering the mod community. The editor is flexible, powerful, and easy to use, and I believe it's somewhat unique in the market today. Modders will be able to create worlds and have access to our database so that they can change monster proxy settings, create their own quests, and mod existing textures in the game. You will be able to create your own worlds and start up a game in that world individually or with friends, and then import that character from the regular gameworld at any time.

Don't worry, there's lot of stuff in the game to play with.
Don't worry, there's lot of stuff in the game to play with.

Titan Quest has been on the drawing board for almost six years and has been in full production for more than two. In the very early years it was Brian Sullivan setting the vision for the product, with the help of cofounder Paul Chieffo, Max McGuire (programmer extraordinaire), Rich Sullivan (lead concept artist), and Josh McHugh (artist). In those early years, that group, with the help of a few others, worked in a small, windowless office we now call "The Dungeon." Iron Lore, led by President Brian Sullivan, has grown into a dedicated team of 38 developers with talent, patience, passion, and a love for games. Since it signed on as our publisher, THQ's superb professionals have helped us steer Titan Quest toward its fast-approaching launch date.

We have only a few short weeks until our final release candidate goes out the door, yet the final chapter has yet to be written. That chapter can only be written by you, the daring adventurer or the inspired modder, who will take our tool set and create worlds yet to be dreamed of. That's the chapter that I can't wait to read.

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