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Elements of Alma: Shades of Tragedy
As of July 01, 2018, the Epilogue Demo chapter to the Elements of Alma series has been fully released, allowing players a brief play through the events that lead up to the main story line entering "Book 1" Elements of Alma: The Soul Bearers.
The Epilogue, "Elements of Alma: Shades of Tragedy, focuses on the Central Power Nation of Axandrum, as their King and Church wage total war with the Southern Nation of Uhdaga. During this war, the Kingdom is left in the safety of the King's most trusted visors, his Elite Court. While the Five members of the Court not only handle the inner Kingdom political problems, they are also charged with maintaining the stability and peace of the nation. As the player, you will face the trials and fears they face. Confront a powerful adversary that seeks to undo the balance placed upon the world by the creators, the Arcus, and place themselves as a God.
Taking a look back at where the series all began
During the "Neverwinter Nights" era, the Elements of Alma series took its first roots. Starting out with both the Epilogue: Shades of Tragedy & Book One: The Soul Bearer, making the models using the help of the BioWare community to create the universe in my own eyes brought to the players the chance to experience something new with a fresh idea to it.
Neverwinter Nights allowed for a smooth road map, designing not just an entire world with the right amount of lore, but also a safe place to play test game play mechanics. Over the many long years, of designing and fleshing out this project. I felt it was ready to resurface and rejoin the gaming community as large scale RPG, with now JRPG style added to it.
Continuing the Medieval, High Fantasy world, Elements of Alma aims to give you a constantly growing world.
History of Elements of Alma: Shades of Tragedy & The Soul Bearer
During 2016 - to present (2018), Elements of Alma made it's revival in the RPG Maker Engines. After much debating of remaking the game in a 3D model engine. It felt just right bringing this large scale world to the 2D Pixel world. By going this route, it allowed a more retro feel while bringing back that "Old School", gaming style that some are accustomed to.
Staying true to how the series all began, the great calamity that befalls the world of Hal'Veshja, (previously named Beshamel, yr 3072) changes the world completely. Not only on the surface, but also inside. The world has a soul, and the calamity has seep it's dark energy into it's soul and began killing it slowly. The inhabitants of Hal'Veshja pertain to the calamity as, "The Fall". As to them, the sky was torn open by a large hand. From the tear arrived unknown fiends who are later address as, "Vettillion".
With, Shades of Tragedy taking part in the past. There will be a constant "Gray" tone applied to help symbolized the nature of the scenarios. This in no way means there is an absents of color all together.
Players can expect a linear, and story focus game play for the Epilogue chapter. As it's purpose is to introduce the player to the world and get them on the right path. Experience the world before all the great powerful magical forces, before monsters, before this great evil
came about and alters the lives for all.
While the game is linear and leads you along the events, does not mean you are restricted to learning only about the main story line. Even the "Side Quest" like Missions are important story arcs. Shades of Tragedy (S.0.T), features Battle Zonas. Which act much like dungeons would in most traditional RPG's or Dungeon crawler like games. As you enter these Battle Zonas you learn about Key Factions, Locations that will be revisited in later installments, hint to more lore that will also be expanded upon in other installments.
Book One, The Soul Bearer. Is really the story really begins to unfold for the series, of course. Taking place 15 years later after the events of the Epilogue chapter, it opens the world up to new adventures.
As this series is a "Generation" style game. You now take over the story as the children's to the Elite Court members. Now just a bit grown up and ready to learn their way around their earth shattered world.
Their story as champions begins with the investigation of a burned village, that was laid to waste in a single night. With not one survivor left to even tell the tale, two encounters leave them both perplex and afraid. Leading them back to their parents to share the news, with their parents now aged and ready for retirement. It is their children who take up the torches and lead the way for a better tomorrow.
The Neverwinter Nights mod, also became home to even Book One. Where the new cast of characters began their adventure to resolve not just the political issues in their home, but the mystery of the Vettillion that had finally surfaced. Why these creatures seek the Soul Stones, of the Avatars, and how to stop them from their goals.
With the whole new cast of characters, comes a larger and more open to explore world. Book One, adds new hurtles and new foes in the paths of the soon to be hero's. Starting the story off in the Central Nation of Axandrum once again. With no war being waged to distract the Kingdom and it's King. The Elite Court was disbanded and it's members disperse to the Rim Lands far away from the Crown City. With everything slowly being rebuilt, the Crown City has establish a new branch of government and closed it's gates to the rest of the nation.
Elements of Alma: The Soul Bearer, will be bringing back the "World Map". One that will expand and open up as you progress. The player will now be able to explore and see the entire Nation of Axandrum.
While exploring Axandrum, you'll also be given the chance to visit areas mentioned or played , in the Epilogue chapter. Rather they now be hostile areas or now cities and small villages. Worry not, there are vehicle traveling to get to certain locations faster than walking.
There will be no encounters placed on the World Map, all encounters are visible along with interactive. The Random encounters are gone, and there is no longer any "Dungeon Crawler" feel to the game, it has officially opened up.
The Dynamic "Day, Noon,Night" system.
One of my personal favorite features added into this installment has to be the dynamic (D.N.N) system.
Allowing certain characters to be interactive during the day hours or noon, along with somewhere else due to it being night. Allows new encounters to appear base on the time of day. Such as the Knarl faction of the breed of Fiend Tribes. Split into the Dawn, and Night Knarls. During the Night hours the Night Knarls will appear, and they are very aggressive. During the Day hours the Dawn will appear. Who are very supportive and sometimes give items for free.
The Soul Bearer, allows the player to uncover lost historic locations, visit ancient civilizations, and discover new mysteries. Such as the lost guardians to the world, the "Yulvians". Learn their stories of what the Humes have done to them, and why they live the way they do now. How they fear or even hate the Hume civilizations.
Watch as they face the same treat as the rest of the world and how they find a way to overcome it or perish as the blight they attacks the world.
The future structure of the series going forward
The Elements of Alma series, going forward will continue its five book structure.
How ever it will no longer be released as full complete games. Starting with the
Epilogue Chapter as a full complete game with a start to finish. Using it as a means
to help shape the full game, and the world the player will find themselves playing
in for the remainder of the series.
While with the release of Book One, it will act as the starting platform for whiche the
rest of the series will be built upon. Using the same lore establish in the Epilogue, along
with the same characters. Book One opens up more of the game, but shall focus around
a central focus. The game it self will not end, yet it will have a story arc that will be followed
till it is completed. This is where the other Books will come in as Expansions. The idea behind
the Expansion structure helps let the players play a game that although is not a Start to Finish,
it helps give the sense of how massive the world they are playing in is. While the first Book will
focus again on the Central Nation where everything took place. They will now have the chance
to explore to the other Nations. Each expansion will of course introduce new Vocations(Classes),
and Talents for the already existing Vocations.
The expansion route helps move away from the, "Micro Transaction" appeal that most companies
and games have followed in today's community. Soaring Dreams Indie, would like you to be able
to have access to everything you'd need to enjoy the game. There has been the thought of taking request from the community and fans to help shape the series and content to more appealing levels.