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> To Arms! Episode One (Vanguard Edition), Recruit, equip, and command up to 15 party members at once!
Max_McGee
post Jul 14 2010, 03:56 AM
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Riddle: Where do you go that you can't come back from until the fields run red with blood?


Answer: TO ARMS!



To Arms! is an episodic, tactical RPG created by Ghostlight Games in RPG Maker VX. Playing as Janos and Horace Blackthorne, the leaders of a ruthless, amoral band of mercenaries, and their lieutenants, you will adventure for glory and gold across the nine provinces of the Graylands. To survive, you'll have to recruit, equip, and command a party of up to fifteen characters in large-scale, strategic turn-based battles.

In this, this introductory chapter--Episode One: Deceive, Despise, and Murder Men--you will go back to a simpler time, when the Blackthorne brothers served the Duke of Rydony and witness the blood-soaked events and betrayals leading up to the birth of Blackthorne Company.

To Arms! Episode One: Deceive, Despise and Murder Men (Vanguard Edition) is somewhere between a public beta and a final, definitive build. All of the gameplay and 90% of the other assets are in place. The most important thing missing is the original sound track. Of course this doesn't mean the game has no music. The same placeholder tracks used throughout development are still in place for those songs not yet completed. Perhaps more accurately, think of this as the full version, with the final build with the O.S.T. as a Deluxe Edition/Director's Cut.




FEATURES: (All Present In This Episode)

A brief note on features list. There is nothing I hate more than when a project boasts tons of features and custom systems it doesn't need and probably won't wind up happening. To Arms! wound up needing a lot of custom systems...and fortunately, I was able to fit every single feature I wanted to into the game. The result is a long list of features, for which I'm still counting my blessings.

* Tactical, turn-based battles with up to fifteen party members. (The largest party available in Episode One is seven units.)
* Fully implemented class-changing system. The class of all generic units can be changed at any time outside of battle, changing their appearance, attributes, and available skills! (You can have any number of any class. Want 10 Knights? You've got it!)
* Eight unique and finely balanced classes for all generic units to choose from!
* Full-featured JP System! Earn JP in battles and spend it to learn the class skills of all characters in any order you choose!
* Custom-tuned front-view battle system with alternate skill costs, cooldowns, enemy AI, aggro/aggro management, and much more!
* Accelerated battle messages and animated status icons streamline the process of controlling large numbers of units with lots of skills.
* Some handsome custom graphics and many native edits.
* Fully custom sound track (final build only) paired with pulse-pounding instrumental versions of classic metal tunes.
* Engaging, episodic "low fantasy" storyline, inspired by George R.R. Martin and penned by the creator of Backstage and Iron Gaia.
* Detailed online instruction manual and helpful in-game tutorials to help you learn the game's many strategic elements.
* Highly challenging battles and dozens of different equally valid strategies that can be used to conquer them!




SCREENSHOTS:(Most but not all of these are current)


Throne-room intrigue.


One of the not-current ones--Horace has far more skills than this now.


Katarpillar © system shows exactly what kinds of units you have in your party at all times.


These sweet monster graphics are from hot toke/wild pudding.





Approximate Play Time of First Episode: 1.5-2 Hours
Estimated Replay Value: Very High, or so we dare to hope.


CREDITS
Concept, Dialogue, Battle Balance, Map Design...Max McGee (Devon Oratz)
Character/Sprite Design...Mr. Nemo, arcan
Original Scripts & Programming Lead...Racheal
Additional Scripts...KGC, Yanfly
Title Screen and World Map Design...Kentona, Sir Subtle, Aprilschild
Original Sound Track (PEnding)...Sir Subtle
Other Music...Bad Company, Iron Maiden.
Lightmaps and Testing...Aprilschild
Monster Graphics...Qut, Wild Pudding (Hot Toke)
Tilesets and additional Sprites...Mack and Enterbrain

FULL CREDITS INCLUDED AT END OF GAME.


Hints and Tips

* To Arms! is very hard, especially if you are used to games where you would almost have to actively try to lose. Save early, often, and in multiple slots! While the creator and head tester can complete the game standing on their heads blindfolded at this point, we don't imagine it will be this easy for people who didn't make the game and haven't played through it hundreds of times!
* Some battles give you a full-heal before hand, and others don't! While this may seem erratic at first, the reason is that your characters receive a full heal whenever they have significant time to rest and recuperate. When trying to determine if you are 'ready' for a difficult battle, look for cues in the story as to whether or not your characters have had time to rest,
*In Episode One alone, your main characters each have ten or more skills to choose from, and you will only be able to unlock some, and you have four generic units each of which can join any of eight classes each of which will have up to ten different skills to unlock. That means that the party and skillset combinations in To Arms! are astronomical. If the game seems too hard, change your strategy! Go back to your last save and assign your classes, equipment, and JP differently! There are dozens of different, valid, proven ways to win To Arms! but even more ways to lose. Just because you are getting your ass kicked doesn't mean that the game is necessarily too hard--try building your party differently!
*On subsequent play throughs, it's possible to skip the introduction...you are encouraged to try different combinations of classes and skills after beating the game the first time. My testers tell me it should be possible to beat the game with every possible combination of classes, including 'four of' everything. Some will definitely be harder than others.
*Save your game at the end for use in To Arms! Episode 2.

Thanks for playing, and have fun! Be sure and let me know what you think! Feedback is always welcome!
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Max_McGee
post Jul 15 2010, 10:11 PM
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So do you guys not like finished games or...?

Well, I guess it's what I should suspect for stealth-releasing a full version on a forum I don't regularly visit with no advance hype.

I apologize if I have not waited what is considered a decent interval around these parts before bumping. I do not know your ways.

In other news: To Arms! got on the front page over at www.hbgames.org which is pretty cool. I was very pleasantly surprised.
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RuGeaR1277
post Jul 16 2010, 01:12 AM
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gonna download and try out.. looks interesting though.. =)
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Cyl
post Jul 16 2010, 01:16 AM
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inactive.
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This is some cool shit. Downloading it now.

Is it free? 'Cuz it looks like a commercial game. :3


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Paradichlorobenzene

(Currently inactive)
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Legion6115
post Jul 20 2010, 05:37 PM
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Crimson Warrior
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This game looks cool. I like the large scale of the battles. I'm downloading it right now and will tell you what I think when I'm done with the demo. smile.gif


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power
post Jul 20 2010, 11:45 PM
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QUOTE
Save your game at the end for use in To Arms! Episode 2.


Just a question, what script are you using to use the saved data of one game on another game? I may have some use for it biggrin.gif

(this was off topic btw)

game looks interesting (specially the big partys and classes), will try it later!

This post has been edited by power: Jul 20 2010, 11:46 PM
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Rainbow Jello
post Jul 22 2010, 06:34 AM
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This is absolutely amazing!
I am so very curious as to where the Job Point system of learning skills came from though.
I deffinetly have a use for that.


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I'm a 'starting out' electro-house music producer, you can like my page and listen to my music here :3



I support...

Spoiler:
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Max_McGee
post Jul 30 2010, 10:38 PM
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Well, I am very happy to see some positive feedback! I have been knee-deep in drama for days. Let me try to answer some questions/comments.

QUOTE
This is some cool shit. Downloading it now.

Is it free? 'Cuz it looks like a commercial game. :3


Episode One of To Arms! is completely free and always will be. Further episodes--if they are made--may or may not be commercial.

@Legion & RuGear:

I await your feedback. And Legion, you have my old handle, sort of. : P

@power:

Er....haven't figured that out now. I think I was going to use the old trick where all of the episodes are built in variants of the same project folder, using the same database, some of the same maps, etc. I assume that is how The Way (pre-scripting and for RM2k) did its episodes.

@Rainbow Jellow:

Just read the credits, dude : P. In terms of the JP and class-change scripts: All credit goes to Yanfly for his AMAZING Battle Engine series. (The current one is Melody, but To Arms! uses a lot of scripts from the one before that.)

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doomed2die
post Jul 30 2010, 10:54 PM
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QUOTE (Rainbow Jello @ Jul 22 2010, 07:34 AM) *
This is absolutely amazing!
I am so very curious as to where the Job Point system of learning skills came from though.
I deffinetly have a use for that.


This is Yanfly's subclass script. I can't find the link to it right now but tongue.gif

You can also use a series of variables if you want to event something similar but it's a pain to do.

@The game: It's really good so far, if a little overbearing in difficulty. It would help if we had some time to level XP But otherwise, really really good, liking it... Like the no random encounter (Except for annoying travel time) thing, so far so good. smile.gif
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link13r2
post Jul 30 2010, 11:02 PM
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can you post the graphics their so cool and I'm trying to make a new game
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Max_McGee
post Jul 31 2010, 03:29 PM
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Um, what graphics in particular are you looking for, Link? A few are public domain but many are proprietary edits made especially for To Arms!

@doomed:

I mentioned that it was Yanfly in the post right before yours. : P

Anyway, thanks for your feedback.
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Max_McGee
post Aug 10 2010, 06:00 PM
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http://rpgmaker.net/games/1895/blog/3168/
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Kav
post Aug 10 2010, 06:03 PM
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Just paste that here.


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Bro01
post Aug 19 2010, 10:22 PM
Post #14



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Type: Designer
Alignment: Chaotic Good




Took me longer to download than to finish thanks to my dodgy internet, but a rather awesome game (loved the fire emblem faces smile.gif ).
When's chapter 2 coming out?

This post has been edited by Bro01: Aug 19 2010, 10:23 PM


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ERROR: The witty.sig file is missing or corrupted.
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doomed2die
post Aug 21 2010, 06:37 PM
Post #15



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Just finished it (been busy; putting it off) and I have to say: Good job, I really enjoyed the gamed. Looking forward to #2. My complains though:

Sorry but the skills were sometimes a little simpler than I would have liked. When you said strategical battle, I knew you meant skills over attack and I was really looking forward to it. However, for 1, you didn't use status effects enough. Nor did you incorporate as many elements and the like in the game. Maybe it was just my playthrough. Still, I would like to see some multi-faceted skills. smile.gif

nonetheless, it was really enjoyable. I loved the game, and yeah~ lol.
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Dezz123
post Aug 21 2010, 08:33 PM
Post #16


Yes.
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Alignment: True Neutral




Hey, Max McGee.
Good to see you here.

Anyways, like I've said before on RMN, the game looks kick ass. Can't wait for Episode Two.


--------------------
This is a signature. :3

Oh, and yeah, I'm back! Why? 'Cause I can, I guess...
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Max_McGee
post Aug 31 2010, 04:40 PM
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Nice to see some against-the-grain positive type feedback. Thank you guys, very heartening. doomed2die, you should try a different party/different skills if you think the game is too simplistic. Naturally, this is the beginning so it's the simplest it's going to get. Future episodes (if they're made) should have increasing strategic depth and complexity.

I think since I last posted here I have LOST my composer and then GAINED another one. So this project continues to be a roller coaster. I'll keep you posted.
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chorrol
post Aug 31 2010, 05:31 PM
Post #18


Trololo
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Looks awesome, but I think I've heard one of battle-commands before... xD
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Shadesttone
post Feb 15 2011, 01:40 AM
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Ooohkay. This is a great game, but there are a few...Quirks.

Mainly, no grinding. I understand that you had this "Chapter" as a set-in-stone battle sequence, but on my first play through, I got my ass owned at the second part with Cutjack/Three Archers/Trebuchet chick. I used a Knight, Pikeman, Archer and Alchemist, with the Paladin. Each archer has about 600-700 HP, right? And, I never even KILLED Cutjack or the Emea...Emma? Whatever.

Mainly, the Archers have insane agility, starting out every fight with poison arrows. Poison seems to be 50-100 damage a turn, which hurts. I had 11 soothing balms or whatnot, an Alabaster potion, two Demon's Blood and a Dreamwine. I would start the battle by putting Shield of Kryllor on my alchemist, and having him heal whoever it's needed. The Pikeman would hold his ground, and the Knight weakened Cutjack (Has about a 5% chance to work, by the way. I used the strength-weakening strike six times that battle, and five times the second try, and not one affected)

So, by round two I've got 2-3 guys poisoned, atleast one dazed, and everybody under 70% HP. Wasn't able to kill anybody. I tried focusing fire on the Siege-girl, on the archers, no go. It takes too long to heal the siege-chick, and she heals for 500hp off and on (Whenever you hit her, really), which makes it impossible without taking out the guys around. So, I finally took out two archers, and bam, chick hit me with some kind of catapult. Three dead, my Alchemist, Knight and archer. Used my last Demon's Blood to resurrect the alchemist, then had my Paladin and Alchemist die. Yeah, game over.

So, no luck on my second try, either. It's just too difficult without proper items. We need a way to be able to EARN gold, in whatever way. You only get 3000 gold (2000 at the start, and then 1000 in the store), and then about 1200 from the Orcish fights. About 4300 max gold. 2000 will go into cheap equipment, 2800 or so into decent gear. The rest is for some Healing salve's and whatnot.

On my second play through, I couldn't get past the battle with the Alchemist and two knights. The alchemist would open battle, oil potion, which seemed to ALWAYS target Horace with two hits of 260-300 damage each, OHKO'ing him. And, then the Knight's would use Armor Break, and that dreaded "Super-kill-700-damage-slash".

Really, I would use the Leader's Defence Buff, AND guard with Horace, but he would still die. IN ONE HIT. Now, I only have two guys. One either heals, and one either attacks. The wizard is useless, because if you resurrect him, then he will just die. Immediately. Bullshit, man.

I liked this game. But I want for versatility. Give us an option to talk to some guy in the town, and he'll ask the band of warriors to, say, help him kill something. Do it, get some gold, and repeat. Maybe 60-70 JP a fight with it, and about 200 gold. Oh, and add an Inn. 30 gold a night. Have the monster pretty tough, about 3-4x as strong as a Grilloi. A nice AOE attack too, with a murderous single-target attack. Maybe some kind of AOE taunt skill, with a 50% chance of working. Would be a pain.

The problem is, I don't like games where you have NO choice. Really, it's stupid to reach an "Impossible" part. I probably won't play this game again, but I'll give it 6/10. Would be about 8 to 9 outta 10 if you were able to actually -do- something that's not storyline bound.
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milkwad
post Mar 5 2012, 03:18 AM
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My God...that is the best title screen I've ever seen...If only the game wasn't so chibi and cute.


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Master milkwad. I rule my domain at youtube. It's a nice place. Don't you dare go there.
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