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A Tale in the Desert IV: A Walk Through the Desert

StraddenStradden Managing EditorHalifax, NSPosts: 6,696Member

MMORPG.com staff writer Bill Murphy recently took a walk across the sands of Egypt with A Tale in the Desert Community Manager Staci Krause. While there, he took in some of the sights of one of the genre's only non-combat MMOs.

The other night I had the pleasure of venturing across Egypt with Staci "Rosethorn" Krause, the Community Manager for the indie MMO A Tale in the Desert. For those not familiar with the title, ATITD is a virtual recreation of ancient Egypt, in which players must work together (and sometimes against one another) to discover and utilize technologies, further the status of the nation, and ultimately construct seven pyramids. It very well may be the only MMORPG that has a distinct ending (when all seven pyramids are built), and oh yeah... there's no combat. A killer's game of choice, this is not. Instead what developer eGenesis has done is create a completely player-driven world that actually changes based on the will and accomplishments of its community. A new "telling" began on February 20th, and Rosethorn was kind enough to spend some time with me in order to help illustrate why now might be a good time to try out this unique and compelling game.

Read A Walk Through the Desert.

Cheers,
Jon Wood
Managing Editor
MMORPG.com

Comments

  • cosycosy ColentinaPosts: 3,304Member

    server wipe is something that i dont like, i saw several videos on youtube about alloy and crafting seams to be challenging :D

    BestSigEver :P
    image

  • dantheman13dantheman13 las vegas, NVPosts: 55Member

    Excellent article!  I've been playing atitd for a few years now (I did the alloy guide on youtube), and I still have a problem describing the game to people.  I think your article gave a great introductory description of the game.  I'd like to add though that this is the most challenging MMO I've ever played, and I've played a lot of them.  For example, the Cooking system in atitd is the most complicated system in any MMO.  Just check out  this calculus formula that a player in Tale 3 theorized explained how to more precisely map food ingredient "coordinates" for the cooking system.  There are lots of challenges in this game, and for a wide range of player types.  You don't have to understand the above type of math to play the game, but if you happen to be a math person, atitd is a game for you to try.  For the rest of us, there are lots of other challenges that require much less of a math background though. :)

  • d0dulk0d0dulk0 BratislavaPosts: 52Member

    the game is as ampty as it can get...there even less players online than in ryzom

  • frijolesfrijoles Somewhere, UTPosts: 26Member

    Did Teppy? ever improve the UI? I played the first telling and a bit of the second, but the interface was aging so poorly that I had a hard time returning. I tried it about a year or so ago and it was just so bad that I didn't last long. I went to the forums to see if there were any suggestions to make it easier to use and more modern, but the most I found was a thread saying that it wouldn't be improved.

    For example, if I remember correctly, I had to move the mouse to the edge of the screen to move the camera. UIs have come a long way since then.

  • wootinwootin none, MEPosts: 259Member

    This sounds like a really novel experiment and a unique game. I'm just scared I'll get sucked in, or worse, get into it and get taken out by my upcoming job :( 

    But still, maybe just for a little while..... :)

  • d0dulk0d0dulk0 BratislavaPosts: 52Member
    Originally posted by frijoles


     
    For example, if I remember correctly, I had to move the mouse to the edge of the screen to move the camera. UIs have come a long way since then.

     

    yep its still like that

  • mmazzolammazzola Memphis, TNPosts: 3Member

     I agree.  I never got into this because I am afraid of being addicted.  I have a friend who lost a good many hours to this game when it first came out.  Its very fun and not quite what you expect.

  • just1opinionjust1opinion Kansas City, MOPosts: 4,844Member
    Originally posted by frijoles


    Did Teppy? ever improve the UI? I played the first telling and a bit of the second, but the interface was aging so poorly that I had a hard time returning. I tried it about a year or so ago and it was just so bad that I didn't last long. I went to the forums to see if there were any suggestions to make it easier to use and more modern, but the most I found was a thread saying that it wouldn't be improved.
    For example, if I remember correctly, I had to move the mouse to the edge of the screen to move the camera. UIs have come a long way since then.

     

    I actually downloaded this "game" and logged in about a month ago to find that it has the clumsiest UI I have ever seen bar none. And yes....that is how you move. Needless to say....I got to the first signpost or something in the game, had a hard time even TURNING my character to look all around, was "in game" for about 3 minutes and promptly logged out.

     

    Honestly, the idea of it all sounds wonderful to me, but if they can't make the character avatar ITSELF easier to control and maneuver through the world.....that's just pathetic. Like you said....UIs have come a LONG way since then.  I'm not someone who wants to be led around by the nose, I LOVE love love "thinking games," and in every single other way this game sounds like fun to me. But I'm not going to tolerate frustration over something SO FREAKING BASIC as moving your avatar. Ridiculous. Control of your avatar in a game is something really basic to game play. You could do everything ELSE right and that wrong....and for me, it's a game breaker.

     

     

    President of The Marvelously Meowhead Fan Club

  • RosethorniiRosethornii Holly, MIPosts: 8Member

    I see  a lot of discussion about avatar movement.  The thing with ATitD, and I know it's hard to get used to it coming from traditional MMO movement, is that once you get used to it, you understand why it's the only way it works.  Because of the nature of all the activity in the game, you want the freedom (yes freedom) point and click movement and using the mouse to move the camera this control scheme gives you.  The game really can't be played any other way.  Teppy's tried to implement some more traditional methods of movement into the game and people really just don't use it, because that is too clunky compared to how easy it is with the original UI.

    I'd ask those who think it's a cool concept to give the UI another shot.  I know it seems odd at first, but after a day or so, you'll understand why.

  • ArmEagleArmEagle GroningenPosts: 36Member
    Originally posted by frijoles


    Did Teppy? ever improve the UI? I played the first telling and a bit of the second, but the interface was aging so poorly that I had a hard time returning. I tried it about a year or so ago and it was just so bad that I didn't last long. I went to the forums to see if there were any suggestions to make it easier to use and more modern, but the most I found was a thread saying that it wouldn't be improved.
    For example, if I remember correctly, I had to move the mouse to the edge of the screen to move the camera. UIs have come a long way since then.

     

    There have been a few 'second' devs. During the past (two) year(s) one of them has made several UI improvements. But yes, the camera control is still archaic. The dev that ported the game to Linux and OSX had started some work to update the camera control, but unfortunately got too busy with real life (because of the very low player base there are no other 'paid' devs besudes the owner/main dev, Teppy).

    ---

    The game is indeed quite something different, in both good and bad ways. It can be quite the time sink/repetitive/grind. But you can do things you can't in any other game.

  • just1opinionjust1opinion Kansas City, MOPosts: 4,844Member
    Originally posted by Rosethornii


    I see  a lot of discussion about avatar movement.  The thing with ATitD, and I know it's hard to get used to it coming from traditional MMO movement, is that once you get used to it, you understand why it's the only way it works.  Because of the nature of all the activity in the game, you want the freedom (yes freedom) point and click movement and using the mouse to move the camera this control scheme gives you.  The game really can't be played any other way.  Teppy's tried to implement some more traditional methods of movement into the game and people really just don't use it, because that is too clunky compared to how easy it is with the original UI.
    I'd ask those who think it's a cool concept to give the UI another shot.  I know it seems odd at first, but after a day or so, you'll understand why.

     

    I DO think it's a very very cool concept, and....I think you're right. I will d/l it again and check it out. It's possible that on the particular day I tried before I was just tired, annoyed, or busy....hard to say. :)

     

    President of The Marvelously Meowhead Fan Club

  • ArmEagleArmEagle GroningenPosts: 36Member
    Originally posted by Rosethornii


    I see  a lot of discussion about avatar movement.  The thing with ATitD, and I know it's hard to get used to it coming from traditional MMO movement, is that once you get used to it, you understand why it's the only way it works.  Because of the nature of all the activity in the game, you want the freedom (yes freedom) point and click movement and using the mouse to move the camera this control scheme gives you.  The game really can't be played any other way.  Teppy's tried to implement some more traditional methods of movement into the game and people really just don't use it, because that is too clunky compared to how easy it is with the original UI.
    I'd ask those who think it's a cool concept to give the UI another shot.  I know it seems odd at first, but after a day or so, you'll understand why.

     

    I hadn't played the game again for more than a few hours since the start of Tale 3. I found the arrow keys to be quite handy while collecting slate. Sure, you could use a macro that doesn't (usually miss). But it's much easier if you have direct control of your character. The same goes with planting multiple flaxbeds (yes, you can click in the distance and click, but sometimes there's lag and you can't respond to that, unless you use arrow keys).

    Something similar can be said about camera control. Everything works somewhat ok when you're simply running the game in fullscreen. Locking the camera/alt-tabbing works, but sometimes I just want more control myself. Pluribus had actually started some work on eventually making direct mouse-camera control possible. But unfortunately he got too busy the past year.

    So I quite disagree with you on that. Yes, you can work with it and might even get used to it. But some changes could be welcomed by players. I can imagine not having 'current day' MMO controls keeps new people from giving the game a decent chance.

  • VGTheoryVGTheory Wood River, ILPosts: 110Member

    This game is currently in a very sad state at the moment.  Unfortunately the developer has decided that money is far more important than the very loyal community it has.  If someone were to make a similar game they could make a lot of bank off of it because the community is there and is wanting for something more.

     

    Articles Here

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