Divinity Original Sin (pre)purchase Agreement

Terms and conditions

It’s a mouthful but you really should read this document carefully before you make your purchase (or pre-purchase). They are the general Terms & Conditions for purchasing anything on one of our sites. We tried to cover most cases, but it’s always possible that we forgot something. If you have questions about anything, please contact support@larian.com. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE WITH ANYTHING IN THIS DOCUMENT, PLEASE DON’T USE THIS SERVICE. By using our Service, you are agreeing, without limitations or qualifications, to the terms and conditions herein. We regret that documents like this exist, but apparently they are necessary.

The summary of it all is that we’re happy that you want to (pre-)purchase one of our games, that you need to make sure you have a PC that can run the game, that once you bought the game, you can only be refunded as long as you didn’t install the game, that you understand you shouldn’t copy our games without our permission, that we make no warranties whatsoever about the quality of the game and that we’ll respect your privacy.

That’s the summary. You should still read the rest. You should always read Agreements like this. Sorry.

1. – Subject and limitations of the service:

www.larianvault.com, www.divinityoriginalsin.com and www.divinitydragoncommander.com and www.larian.com are Internet websites (hereinafter “the Site”) offering internet users who have registered to the site (hereinafter “Customers”), a download to own video game service.

The user may select a video game, download it, install it on his computer and keep it on his hard disk drive (hereinafter “the Service”).

The Service is operated by Larian Studios NV (hereinafter the “Distributor”), Panharinglaan 11, 8660 De Panne

The Service consists in the digital delivery of video games and all associated content needed to install and run the said games (serial number or activation key, multiplayer key, bonus key…) as data files: no physical back-up, notably CD-rom or DVD-rom will be sent (hereinafter “the Games” or the “Video Games”).

Furthermore, the Service can also carry, under similar conditions, other products, such as strategy guides or physical versions of the products. These Terms and Conditions apply in the exact same way to all the other products.

2. – Prerequisites:

2.1 – Internet Access: The Games available to download range from dozens of megabytes to many gigabytes in size: it is therefore recommended that the Customer has a broadband internet connection, either ADSL or cable. An internet access is also required to install and launch the downloaded Games, or, depending on the Games, to reach some dedicated features (multiplayer sessions, etc...).

2.2 - Account: To use the Service, you will need to create an account and you will be required to supply valid information including a valid email address. Incorrect details may result in the rejection of your order.

2.3 – Computer: The Games require a clean computer, with system specifications fulfilling a certain number of requirements (CPU power, RAM, GPU...): these specifications are indicated online on a Game per Game basis. It is the Customer’s responsibility to check that their computer fulfills the minimum requirements to run each Game. If in doubt about the specifications, please refer to article 5 – Customer Service and ask our customer service.

The Distributor will not be held responsible for misuse of the downloaded Games, nor for their compatibility with the Customer’s computer.

3. – Price & Payment:

The prices of Games advertised for sale on the Site are as set out on the Site, errors and omissions excepted. Prices may change at any time prior to acceptance of Customer’s order.

There are orders for Games that have not yet become available. For some Games, Customers will be able to make a pre-released order or a pre-load order using the Site. Release dates are set by the publishers and are subject to change. As a result, the Distributor is not liable for any changes to a pre-release date.

Pre-release, pre-load or download orders will be supplied at the price applicable at the time of order and the sale is said to have taken place once the Customer obtained the payment confirmed page and received a confirmation email.

Customers must pay all applicable sales and use taxes, value added taxes and other taxes levied on you by any taxing authority on any Game purchase in any country where such transactions are otherwise subject to tax, regardless of the method of delivery. Any taxes owed by you (i) as a result of purchasing Games or the payment of any fee, (ii) that are required or permitted to be collected from you by the Distributor under applicable law, and (iii) that are based upon the amounts payable under these Terms & Conditions, must be remitted by Customers to the Distributor. Failure on the Distributor's part to invoice a Customer for any such taxes does not relieve such Customer of the liability to pay such taxes. The Customer will promptly reimburse the Distributor for all taxes or other charges imposed upon the Distributor by any national, state or municipal government upon the sale, use, production, or distribution of Games.

No bank or card details are visible by, nor stored by the Distributor or on the Site. In order to fight mounting internet fraud, the Distributor collects and records certain device identifying information such as IP addresses, as well as other non-personally identifiable information. In addition, the Distributor has contracts in place with certain third party service providers and shares such non-personally identifiable information with them to provide the safest user experience. This unique official identification contractually binds you. In the absence of fraud this information will remain confidential.

4. – Customers Rights & Obligations:

4.1 – Customer ID: the Customer is responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of his accounts’ login and password, and is fully responsible for all activities that occur under this account.

The Distributor reserves the right to suspend or terminate any account if it is or appears to be used in breach of any of the provisions of these Terms & Conditions, including the provision of false registration details or any other misuse of the Site. Any person who holds such a suspended or terminated account must not re-register on the Site without the Distributor’s prior consent.

In the event of any unauthorized use of your account or any other breach of security, the Customer must notify the Distributor immediately by contacting customer services.

Note about Phishing (the criminally fraudulent process of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details): The Distributor will never ask the Customer to divulge his password. Such a request would be a fraud attempt by a third party.

4.2- Game Delivery: The Customer can access the Games’ data files and all associated content needed to install and run said Games (serial number or activation key, multiplayer key, bonus key…) once the payment has been validated. In order to fight fraud, the Distributor may refuse or delay the delivery of some or all of this associated content should the payment not be validated. If a Customer is waiting for a Game delivery, he may contact the customer service in order to speed the payment validation process up.

4.3 – Right of Cancellation: the Customer may cancel his order at any stage before the Service is delivered. The Service is delivered once the Customer has received the downloadable links and/or any serial numbers either on the receipt page or via confirmation email.

4.4- Distributor cancellation & refund policy: Video Games for which the Customer has received downloadable links and/or any serial numbers are non-refundable, whether based on technical failure of the Game, Customer inability to meet requirements to run the Game on the Customer’s computer or lack of enjoyment while playing the Game.

Refunds may be offered if all the following conditions are met:

  • The time of the Customer’s request for refund/credit is less than 48 hours since the Service started;
  • The Game has not been activated or launched;
  • The Game serial numbers (activation key, multiplayer key, bonus key...if any) have not been transmitted and/or disclosed by the Customer to any third party;
  • Customer service has determined the Customer’s refund request reasonable under special circumstances.
Customer service will determine if a Customer meets the foregoing criteria for a refund. If a Customer feels he is qualified for a refund, he will have to contact Customer service.

4.5 – License of Use: The payment and download of Video Games gives the Customer an individual license that is non-exclusive for the use of the video game purchased, for a purely private, non-transferable and non-commercial use. The Customer commits to using the Game following the Publisher’s End User License as provided during installation and/or (depending on the Game) on the Site.

In consequence, the Customer is forbidden from modifying, decompiling, translating, adapting and/or copying the downloaded game(s) in any way, except to create a copy onto a CD or DVD-rom or any other support for personal archiving.

The distribution of non-authorized copies to third parties over the internet or any other network prevents the development of distribution by download and prevents the right holders from any remuneration which would be used for the creation of subsequent Games. In order to prevent fraud, the Customer may only install the Games on a limited number of machines (and reinstall a limited number of times) and/or, (depending on the Game), will have to create an account directly on the Publisher’s site or any third party selected by said Publisher to launch or access dedicated features from the Game.

In the event of problems arising from the reasonable re-installation of the game (loss, system alteration, etc.), please contact the customer service which may expand customer’s rights after having analyzed any reasonable requests.

5. – Customer Service:

The Distributor provides assistance with the Service for any questions relating to the download of, the installation of or the payment of a Game.

To receive assistance with the Service, Customers can go to the online support pages and, if they do not find the required answers, may contact the customer service using the contact form available on the Site.

In order for customer service to satisfy any request, the Customer will be required to give information that was sent to them after the purchase (sale ID), accurate information about the issue encountered and about the Customer’s computer environment.

The Distributor is not responsible for any issues linked to the Game itself. These issues are the Game Publisher’s responsibility only. The Distributor may provide links to the Game Publisher’s customer support or technical FAQ pages if and when available.

6. – Service Limitations:

The Distributor cannot always anticipate technical or other operational difficulties which may result in loss of data, personalization settings or other service interruptions. For this reason, Customers agree that the Service, including the services of its third-party service providers, are provided “AS IS” and “AS AVAILABLE”. Neither the Distributor nor its third-party service providers assume responsibility for the timeliness, deletion, miss-delivery or failure to store any data, communications or personalization settings. In particular, the Distributor cannot guarantee the speed of download of the Games, which depends on the combination of the Service with characteristics inherent to the Internet or the delivery of a third party’s service, including service from third-party Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and the User’s system.

7. – Warranties:

The Consumer benefits, under the terms of each Publisher end-user license, of a limited warranty for each Game purchased according to the present Terms and Conditions.

In any event, the responsibility and the guarantees of the Distributor are limited to the replacement of defective games or their eventual reimbursement.

The Distributor may provide a corrective patch to update the version of a Game purchased on the Site. This patch, provided for free by the Publisher is reachable from the Game’s menu itself, or from the Publisher’s website, or from the Site. For some Games, only patches provided from the Site are compatible with the versions of Games sold on the Site. The Distributor is not responsible for any issues linked to a non-compatible patch installed by the Customer on a Game purchased on the Site.

8. Community tools:

In addition to the online selling of Games, the Distributor provides tools allowing communication between Customers (user reviews, forum posts, profiles, messages…).

8.1 – Rules of Conduct: The Distributor may delete any illicit content and, as a potential author, the Customer will be held responsible when he contributes content to the Service.

If a Customer encounters another user who is violating any of the rules of conduct, he shall report this activity to the customer service.

8.2 – Property: When a Customer contributes content to the Service, the Customer expressly grants to the Distributor a non-exclusive, perpetual, worldwide, complete and irrevocable right to quote, re-post, use, reproduce, modify, create derivative works from, syndicate, license, print, sublicense, distribute, transmit, broadcast, and otherwise communicate, and publicly display and perform the content, or any portion thereof, in any manner or form and in any medium or forum, whether now known or hereafter devised, without notice, payment or attribution of any kind.

9. - Privacy:

The Distributor respects the privacy of the Internet users. To see this site's Privacy Policy, please visit http://www.larian.com/disclaimer.php

10. Proof & Filing:

All data exchanged with the Customers are preserved by the Distributor under reasonable conditions of safety. The filing of these data is carried out on a reliable and durable back-up means so as to correspond to a faithful and durable copy. In the event of conflict between the data held by the Distributor and any other document, it is expressly agreed that the aforementioned data will be recognized between the parties.

11. - Specific rules on the protection of minors and consumer information:

To answer the consumer’s need for information about the content of the offered Games, the Distributor systematically reproduces the classification established by the ESRB system (Entertainment Software Rating Board). For more information on ESRB ratings please visit http://www.esrb.org.

The Service is not directed to children under the age of 13. The Distributor will not knowingly collect personally identifiable information on or through the Service from anyone under 13. Please be aware that certain games distributed via the Service contain mature content and there may be posted specific age restrictions to access and view such areas. You may be exposed to Content on the Service that you find offensive, indecent or objectionable. By using the Service you assume all risk associated with its use. We encourage parents to supervise their children's use of the Service and maintain open communication regarding appropriate materials for use and viewing by their children. Note to Parents. If you have any concerns about the Service, please contact our customer service.

12. – Disclaimer:

THE MATERIALS IN THIS SERVICE ARE PROVIDED "AS IS" AND WITHOUT WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED. TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMISSIBLE PURSUANT TO APPLICABLE LAW, THE DISTRIBUTOR DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. THE DISTRIBUTOR DOES NOT WARRANT THAT THE FUNCTIONS CONTAINED IN THE MATERIALS WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR-FREE, THAT DEFECTS WILL BE CORRECTED, OR THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR OR THE SERVER THAT MAKES THEM AVAILABLE ARE FREE OF VIRUSES OR OTHER HARMFUL COMPONENTS. THE DISTRIBUTOR DOES NOT WARRANT OR MAKE ANY REPRESENTATIONS REGARDING THE USE OR THE RESULTS OF THE USE OF THE MATERIALS IN THE DISTRIBUTOR’S SERVICE IN TERMS OF THEIR CORRECTNESS, ACCURACY, RELIABILITY, OR OTHERWISE. YOU (AND NOT THE DISTRIBUTOR) ASSUME THE ENTIRE COST OF ALL NECESSARY SERVICING, REPAIR OR CORRECTION. APPLICABLE LAW MAY NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES, SO THE ABOVE EXCLUSION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. THE MATERIAL THAT YOU READ IN THIS SERVICE IS PROVIDED SOLELY FOR ENTERTAINMENT AND PROMOTIONAL PURPOSES. THE INFORMATION AND OPINIONS EXPRESSED IN BULLETIN BOARDS, CHAT ROOMS, OR OTHER FORUMS CONDUCTED ON THIS SERVICE ARE NOT NECESSARILY THOSE OF THE DISTRIBUTOR OR ITS AFFILIATED OR RELATED ENTITIES OR CONTENT PROVIDERS, AND THE DISTRIBUTOR MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES REGARDING THAT INFORMATION OR THOSE OPINIONS. FURTHERMORE, NEITHER THE DISTRIBUTOR NOR ITS AFFILIATED OR RELATED ENTITIES OR ITS CONTENT PROVIDERS ARE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE TO ANY PERSON OR ENTITY WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, PERSONS WHO MAY USE OR RELY ON SUCH DATA/MATERIALS OR TO WHOM SUCH DATA/MATERIALS MAY BE FURNISHED) FOR ANY LOSS, DAMAGE (WHETHER ACTUAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, PUNITIVE, OR OTHERWISE), INJURY, CLAIM, LIABILITY OR OTHER CAUSE OF ANY KIND OR CHARACTER WHATSOEVER BASED UPON OR RESULTING FROM ANY INFORMATION OR OPINIONS PROVIDED IN THE SERVICE.

A SMALL NUMBER OF USERS MAY EXPERIENCE EPILEPTIC SEIZURES WHEN EXPOSED TO CERTAIN LIGHT PATTERNS OR BACKGROUNDS ON A COMPUTER SCREEN OR WHILE USING THE SERVICE. CERTAIN CONDITIONS MAY INDUCE PREVIOUSLY UNDETECTED EPILEPTIC SYMPTOMS EVEN IN USERS WITH NO HISTORY OF SUCH SYMPTOMS. CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN PRIOR TO USE OF THE SERVICE IF YOU HAVE HAD ANY OF THESE SYMPTOMS AND DISCONTINUE USE OF THE SERVICE IMMEDIATELY IF YOU EXPERIENCE DIZZINESS, ALTERED VISION, EYE OR MUSCLE TWITCHES, LOSS OF AWARENESS, DISORIENTATION OR INVOLUNTARY MOVEMENTS OR CONVULSIONS.

13. – General Provisions:

The Distributor reserves the right to update the Terms and Conditions at any time. The Distributor will then provide access to the new Terms and Conditions on the Site. The new Terms and Conditions will take effect immediately, and will govern all new transactions through the Site.

Unless otherwise specified, the materials in the Service are presented solely for the purpose of entertainment and promoting programs, events, products available in the United States, its territories, possessions, and protectorates. The Site is controlled and operated by the Distributor from its offices within the State of Georgia, United States of America. The Distributor makes no representation that material in the Service is appropriate or available for use in other locations. Those who choose to access the Service from other locations do so on their own initiative and are responsible for compliance with local laws, if and to the extent local laws are applicable.

This agreement shall be governed by, construed and enforced in accordance with the laws of the Kingdom of Belgium, as it is applied to agreements entered into and to be performed entirely within Belgium. Any action a Customer, any third party or the Distributor bring to enforce this agreement or, in connection with, any matters related to the Service shall be brought only in the district of Veurne, Belgium, and the Customers expressly consent to the jurisdiction of said courts. If any provision of this agreement shall be unlawful, void, or for any reason unenforceable, then that provision shall be deemed severable from this agreement and shall not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions. This is the entire agreement between the parties relating to the matters contained herein and shall not be modified except in writing, signed by the Distributor.

Last updated on the 8th of April 2013

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Thanks to phenomenal backers our kickstarter campaign was a success! Check out how it happened
Original Sin on Kickstarter
Updates
Update #63 Merry D:OS-mas to all and to all a good launch!
Update #62 The unboxing of Divinity: Original Sin and a call to action!
Update #61 A small delay for a good reason: Let there be voice!
Update #60 D:OS for Mac released; Collector's Editions announced; Early Access updated; Larian looking for beta testers!
Update #59 The Post-Kickstarter Year: A Retrospective and a Release Date
Update #58 It's beta time!
Update #57 Getting excited? You beta be!
Update #56 Spring is coming, but an alpha update is here.
Update #55 The big Valentine update: Woo your partner, mark your map, and put robes on your back starting... now.
Update #54 Stabilise your life with an alpha update; Watch Jesse Cox deal with crabs; and Mac users, rejoice!
Update #53 Cooperative multiplayer is live, Companions are live, Fancy trailer is live!
Update #52 Happy holidays! Here comes the music!
Update #51 Alpha access available!
Update #50 Newsflash: Weresheep & Codex report, are we ready?
Update #49 Divinity:Original Sin’s Alpha Dated! Input needed! Live stream!
Update #48 A Big Surprise
Update #47 Silverglen, Method to the madness, Learn Russian, Font check, Shout out!
Update #46 DOS editor news, 10 Interesting things about Orcs, Stats screen preview
Update #45 Divinity:Original Sin Release Date Is Set!
Update #44 About Phantom Lairs, Weresheep and of course ... Dragons!
Update #43 For backers only: Dragon Commander now available
Update #42 Pledge management! Free Dragon Commander goodies!
Update #41 Pledge management dated, Award, Lost Movie, Behind the scenes, Shout out, Need a Fiddler
Update #40 Message from the trenches
Update #39 Introducing Bert the guru, Shout out, Blog update, Last days of Paypal
Update #38 Hello world!
Update #37 For Backers only: Downloading Divine Divinity/Divinity Anthology add-ons
Update #36 The admin part
Update #35 All Stretch Goals Achieved + Retrospective Video
Update #34 Roll the drums!!! Homing in on the last stretch goal!
Update #33 Jim Sterling is a star + 10 reasons why people should pledge
Update #32 Surprise Event! Live session with Jim Sterling from Destructoid on Twitch TV
Update #31 Less than 24 hours to go!!! 800K reached! As behind the scenes as it gets!
Update #30 27 Hours Left, Companions, Editor Magic, Mixing Physical with Digital
Update #29 More on henchmen and companions
Update #28 The last 48 hours, 700K stretch goal achieved and something special...
Update #27 66 hours to go - Secret Stretch Goal Reached!
Update #26 We are now doing an AMA on Reddit
Update #25 72 hours left, Stretch goal 2 achieved!!! New goal announced!
Update #24 Announcing the Final Countdown
Update #23 600K!!! Roll credits! Wait... what?
Update #22 Starting the end-game
Update #21 4 Days To Go, The Ultimate Preview, Reddit AMA, Stretch Goals Video, Imps vs Commander!
Update #20 Overview of add-ons and reward tiers
Update #19 Looking Back Already, And Looking Forward
Update #18 Community Input, Kirill Live Tonight, 3K Likes
Update #17 8 days left: Maxos speaks, Major rewards update!
Update #16 With 9 days left to go the Phantom forest grows... + New movie
Update #15 Homestead Built, Expanding The Lair, More Than Meets The Eye, Kirill Live
Update #14 Stretch goal ahoy, Designer Talk, Join the Forums
Update #13 25K left to go, New Update Theme, The History of Rivellon & a shout out!
Update #12 Is that a stretch goal I see?
Update #11 Kirill's Surprise, Character Stats, Sources of Inspiration, Dragon Commander footage, Fanday
Update #10 Funding successful! New info, new goodies, new lots of things!
Update #9 Are we nearly there yet? The butcher, the editor & Matt Chat
Update #8 Announcements, Single Player and Dropping In, Talents and Traits
Update #7 Stretchgoals, Music Preview
Update #6 Beating The System
Update #5 The Short of it, Downloads, Reward Matrix, Articles, 6666, GOG
Update #4 Zandalor's perspective on recent events, SP video, reward updates, more undies
Update #3 FAQ, part the first
Update #2 Shortest Review Meeting Ever (And Underwear)
Update #1 Hands-on with the Editor

Kirill's Surprise, Character Stats, Sources of Inspiration, Dragon Commander footage, Fanday

Update #11 · Apr 10, 2013

Kirill’s Surprise

In this video, Swen has a short interview with Kirill Pokrovsky, our composer. At the end, he even has a surprise for everybody! Mark the date - thursday, april 18th!

Character Stats

People have been asking about character customization. We will post information about equipment and skills later on. This update will focus on character stats only. Before you read on, please realize that these things tend to change a lot during the process of building the game. We tweak the formulas and the balancing constantly, and the way we programmed and organized this, allows us to make big changes. (Data driven and relative values are the keywords here.) So what follows is the current implementation.

But so yeah, stats. That’s actually a long story. Just so you know, we don’t come up with "a stat system" overnight. At first, we started out with something very, very similar to Divine Divinity. Without implementing it, we realized it wouldn’t work well in a turn-based combat game. We considered the Beyond Divinity stat system, because Beyond Divinity started out as a turn-based game (the publisher decided against that back in the day). Breaking that down, we again had to let go of that idea because it had been changed too much to reflect the real-time combat system Beyond Divinity ended up with.

So this quickly became the tale of how a programmer, a designer, a producer and a CEO set out to each make their own stat proposal. Hearing them one by one, you could feel where each of them was coming from: the mathematical background, the creative approach, the realistic/empirical method...

One of us actually wrote a four-page study about how "realistic fighting" actually works. Part of it looked like this:

When I try to hit someone:

  • the more skilful I am with my weapon, the more chance I have to hit
  • the more skilful I am with my weapon, the more damage I will do
  • strength can determine the damage of some weapons (e.g. a crossbow does not benefit from strength, but a having a bigger draw weight has an effect on a normal bow)
  • strength can determine the range of some weapons (e.g. the stronger you are, the higher the draw weight of your bow can be, which means that your arrow can go a greater distance)
  • strength can determine the chance of a normal bow hitting the target because the bowman can draw longer and hold steady longer for better aim
  • the better my motor skills, the more chance I have to hit and the more damage I can inflict (e.g. having a good aim is having efficient motor skills)
  • if I am wearing a shield, I am often less free to do with my weapon what I want (even a simple one handed sword benefits from the freedom of not carrying a shield and having a second free hand)
  • ...

And it went on like that, and we started to wonder what this guy does during the weekend... But it became clear that being too realistic would make it a very complex system. Not only to balance it, but also towards the player. And this proposal also only took into account that you were going to fight, and that’s a very limited stat system for a game where a lot more is going on than just fighting.

On the other hand, this breakdown wasn’t that bad of a read because we all agreed that a stat and combat system have to make sense, and be logical.

Sitting together and talking about all of our ideas, we learned where everyone was coming from. So, still on paper, the first stat system we came up with was called SPAM, which was an acronym for Strength, Presence, Accuracy and Mind. After trying it out (still not in game, we were actually building characters on paper, and rolling dice when fighting monsters, persuading characters, picking locks...), we noticed everyone was putting a lot of points in the Presence stat, because that stat was really carrying too much weight. And back to the drawing board we went. A couple of times.

Through trial and error, and discussion, we ended up with the following character stats, and we implemented them in such a way that it is easy to change the values, the rules and the formulas. We have already changed it often, and even added stats, simply by reading our forum (and other forums) and by playing the game.

We know there are nuts here (on Kickstarter, on internet, and at Larian Studios) that love stat discussions, so don’t hold back! (The names of these stats are programmer names, and may still change. Well, anything is open for discussion and balancing, really.)

Also take into account that skills play a big role as well. We’ll tell you more about those later. And hopefully we'll also make the 650K stretch goal, because then we'll be able to add talents and personal traits to the system, which will make it pretty cool.

The NPCs have the same stats and formulas as the player. One level makes a big difference: they have more hitpoints, do more damage, and are generally harder to hit. But it’s still doable if you know what you’re doing.

As the hero, you start the game with 5 points in every stat, and you get 5 statpoints for customizing your character. Per level-up, you currently get 1 statpoint. But 1 statpoint makes a difference.

Items that have an impact on stats, have their positive and negative effects, so there are trade-offs that help building a character. There are items that support different types of character builds. We'll talk about items in a future update.

Stats are also used for saving throws against different effects. For instance, a high dexterity lowers your chance of falling down when walking over ice, and strength gives you a saving throw against being caught in a wall of ice (you can break through).

It doesn't take a genius to see that this guy's speed stat will be low. And that his armor will absorb a lot of damage. And to wield such an axe, he must be very strong. Other than the lack of speed, what will his weak spots be?

Primary stats

Level

  • is a multiplier for your hitpoint bonus from constitution
  • is a multiplier for your mana bonus from intelligence

Strength

  • gives damage bonuses to attacks with melee weapons
  • defines how much weight you can carry
  • defines what items you can lift
  • defines how far you can throw items, depending on their weight
  • gives you a bonus to intimidation

Dexterity

  • gives damage bonuses to attacks with ranged weapons
  • gives you a higher chance of successfully picking locks and picking pockets
  • affects the "ideal range" of ranged weapons
  • lower chance of triggering traps, higher chance of disarming traps
  • better at repairing

Intelligence

  • determines your amount of mana
  • gives bonuses to magic (depending on the spell: damage, range, width of a cone, duration, how easy or hard the saving throw is...)
  • gives you a bonus to reasoning
  • helps you figure out NPC stats and resistances
  • helps you to identify unknown items
  • gives bonuses to mind resistance

Constitution

  • determines your amount of hitpoints
  • gives you higher resistance against poison
  • gives you a bonus to charming

Speed

  • determines the distance you can walk with one action point
  • defines how good you are at dodging or evading attacks (defense rating)
  • gives bonuses to initiative
  • spend less action points when changing equipment or using items in combat

Perception

  • determines how much chance you have of successfully hitting an enemy (offense rating)
  • defines your sight and hearing which helps your enemy awareness (e.g. on the mini map)
  • helps with discovering traps and finding treasures and secrets

This fire demon is a formidable foe. He has a very high resistance to fire. So high even, that fire damage actually heals him. He can create lava surfaces from a distance. Even though his speed stat is pretty low, he is known to sometimes fly over the battlefield. When he runs out of mana, he has to come close to drive his claws through his enemies, dealing piercing damage, or uses his tail to sweep multiple enemies in one attack, dealing crushing damage with a chance of knockdown.

Secondary stats

Offense and defense

These are determined by your primary stat perception and speed. They can be boosted by magical equipment. When you attack someone, your offense rating is compared to your enemy’s defense rating. This determines how much chance you have of actually hitting him.

Damage

This stat is determined by your weapon or your spell, and gets a bonus from one of your primary stats. This can be boosted by well-made or magical equipment.

Critical chance and critical damage

These stats are determined by your weapon. They can be boosted by well-made or magical equipment.

Armor

When a hit is successful, armor absorbs part of the damage that was dealt. For instance, if you’re hit with 8 damage and you have armor 3, you only take 5 damage. If your armor rating is very high, it is possible to completely absorb all the damage that is dealt by a weak enemy. This stat is determined by your equipment and can be boosted with well-made or magical items.

Blocking chance

This is determined by the shield you are wearing, if you are wearing a shield. When a hit is successful, the shield gives you a chance of actually fully blocking the attack. Different shields obviously have different blocking chances.

Hitpoints

This stat is determined by your constitution stat, and can be boosted with magical items. Hitpoints do not regenerate automatically, and can only be regained by healing, eating or resting.

Mana

This stat is determined by your intelligence stat, and can be boosted with magical items. Magic spells cost mana. Mana does not automatically regenerate and can only be regained by drinking potions, eating certain types of food, or resting.

Sight and hearing

These secondary stats are determined by your perception stat. They can be boosted by special or magical equipment. They define how far you can see (we have a shroud, and fog of war system), and how well your hearing is (so you can hear and even identify an NPC without being able to see him).

Initiative

This stat is determined by your speed stat, and can be boosted with special or magical items. It gives you bonuses when combat starts and initiative is rolled.

Persuasion

This is determined by equipment bonuses only. Persuasion gives you bonuses when trying to intimidate, charm or reason with your party members or NPCs.

Walk speed

This stat is determined by your speed stat, and can be boosted with special or magical items. It determines how far you can walk with one action point in turn-based combat.

Luck

This stat can only be boosted with magical items. It’s the X factor of the game...

Poison resistance

Determined by your constitution stat. Poison resistance will absorb the damage poison would do every turn.

Fire, Water, Earth and Air resistances

Determined by magical items you are wearing. These absorb elemental damage.

Mind resistance

Determined by your intelligence stat, and magical items you are wearing. This helps against mind attacks (for instance fear).

Piercing, Slashing, Crushing resistances

Determined by the equipment you are wearing. These resistances absorb damage from physical attacks.

Which games influenced Divinity Original Sin?

Our Russian friends at Gmbox.ru suggested that we post this video in one of our updates, because it clearly shows where we're getting some of our inspiration from. They asked Swen to give a rundown of his five most favourite games ever. There’s a couple of surprises in there. What's also surprising is how awake he looks in the video!

Dragon Commander livestream!

Today we did our first twitch.tv livestream ever together with the good folk at GOG.com and while we initially had some issues (you should skip the first 10 mins or so), it was a pretty cool experience because we could interact directly with the audience. If you pledged for the 65$ tier, you might want to check this out. If you didn't and are just thinking about it, definitely check it out, because Dragon Commander is the type of game that will take everybody by surprise.

http://www.twitch.tv/larianstudios/b/389054545

Before you bombard us with messages, yes, we're going to be adding a Dragon Commander add-on option here. We wanted to do it today even but that didn't happen. Most likely it'll be the case tomorrow.

Fan day dated

In yesterday's update, we announced a new add-on which allows you to get a fan day ticket. We neglected to mention the date though ;) So the Fan day will be on August 9th 2013 in Gent, Belgium, and start at 10:00 am in the morning, lasting the entire day and evening for those who want.

In Closing

If anybody wants to contribute to the stats, talents or personal traits discussion - go to our forums and drop us a message there. You are free to drop a note in the Kickstarter comments section, but there's a lot of traffic there and your suggestions might be lost.

You are btw only 300 likes away from having an extra Bellegar encounter in the game. See our previous update for more details, but for every 1000 likes above 1061 likes, we will add an extra Bellegar encounter to the game. We'll start preparing some rhymes.

Funding successful! New info, new goodies, new lots of things!

Update #10 · Apr 9, 2013

Thank you!!!! You are the best!!!!

Wow! Funded in less than a fortnight! You are amazing!

And what a great community you are too. You have no idea how much ideas you gave us already by posting your question and feedback in the comments section and on our forum pages. Your belief in our ability to deliver is extremely motivating for us, and we will do our utter best not to disappoint you.

As a token of our appreciation, here’s a new video that contains a little gift to all of you in our community. You’ve been working very hard in getting people to notice our campaign and without you, we wouldn’t be funded today. Enjoy!

Bellegar hears you!

There’s been a lot of demand and a lot of rhyming to summon Bellegar and he let us know that he’s not insensitive to your prayers. But this is Bellegar, right, so nothing comes easy.

He sent us this message:

"Divinity fans, rise and cheer For Bellegar shall soon appear!

Yet, my friends, when push comes to shove First I'll want a little love!

So 'Like' me on my facebook page

And everybody's favourite mage

Will soon arrive on the glorious stage!

For each and every thousand likes,

I'll cheer and clap and yell out 'Yikes!',

And to your great, your utter delight

Brighten the day by stepping in sight,

For no greater joys or pleasures there are

Than meeting the mighty Bellegar!"

Yes, Bellegar now works (interim he assures us) at a social media marketing firm and yes, he's indeed shamelessly looking for more likes on his Facebook page. So his deal is that for every 1000 Facebook likes, we can add an extra encounter with the might Bellegar to the game! What are you waiting for? Share, like, invite, you know the drill.

If you don't know who this mighty & handsome mage is, play Divinity II: Developer's Cut!

Stretch goals!

Now that we’re funded, we’re going to make every effort we can to reach those stretch goals. We think they’d make a brilliant addition to what’s already going to be a very good RPG, so help us spread the word. Again, everything that’s invested in the game now, ensures that your gameplay experience (and modding experience) will be so much better this fall. Spread the word!

Paypal available now!

Also, now that the campaign is successful, paypal pledges are available on the side of this page, and the original campaign page.

Confirmed: Coming to Linux & Mac!

It's about time, but we are extremely happy to announce that Divinity: Original Sin will now definitely be coming to Mac & Linux. We will do everything we can to ensure that the release dates are going to coincide with the Windows PC release, but if that doesn't happen, it will be shortly after.

For Kickstarter backers only, new rewards!

Over the last two weeks there have been many requests for adding goodies, extra rewards and extra add-ons to our campaign, and to celebrate our successful funding, we extended the list of rewards and add-ons.

First perhaps an overview for those who missed it. There are two Kickstarter-only items that are a gift to everybody who pledges $10 or more to our campaign: Zandalor's epic trunks of intelligence & the Kickstarter potion.

Zandalor's Demonic trunks

Everybody who backed our campaign will receive the delightfully evil demonic trunks of Zandalor. We think they will make gaming history so you should consider yourselves very lucky to have them.

Kickstarter potion

Additionally, anyone who gets the game via Kickstarter will also receive the Kickstarter potion. Quaffing the potion will ensure that whenever you play Divinity: Original Sin (or for that matter, whenever somebody else plays the game with you), it will be clear that you were part of the brave legion that supported our campaign to make this the best RPG we can.

New: Message in the woods

Anybody who pledges $50 or more, will be able to write a message which will be carved in one of the trees in the Dark Forest for everybody to see. Since this is something that all players will see, there will be certain constraints, but we're quite flexible.

There are many trees in the Dark Forest, but are there enough for all those messages?

New: Engraving tool (equipment inscriptions)

Anybody who pledges $95 or more, will receive an in-game engraving tool with which you can engrave messages on any piece of in-game equipment. You will be able to engrave as many pieces of equipment as you want, and give them to people you play the game with online.

Change: Listed in the credits

Everybody who pledges above $95 will be included in the credits of the game as a backer

For Kickstarter backers only, more add-ons!

(Note: Digital add-ons require a base pledge of $25. Physical add-ons require a physical tier, starting at $65. To include an add-on in your pledge, just increase the amount you pledge by the cost of the add-on. When the campaign finishes, we'll contact you via Kickstarter to so you can tell us what add-ons you want. If you want more than one add-on, just sum up the total cost of all the add-ons, and add it to your pledge. When in doubt, contact us ).

New Digital add-ons

Divinity Anthology – add $20

For a mere pittance, you can now get a digital version of the Divinity Anthology included in your pledge. Ten years in the making, the Divinity Anthology collects all games set in the acclaimed Divinity universe: Divine Divinity, Beyond Divinity and the complete Divinity 2 (including the expansion). Experience the remastered versions of these epic fantasy RPGs; enjoy the many unique extras that come with this exclusive edition and celebrate a decade of Divinity!

New Physical add-ons

Fanday ticket – add $150

By popular request, and because we realized we shouldn’t limit this to the upper tiers only because we have many fans whose pockets are not that deep, you can now get a ticket for the first ever Larian Studios fan day! The fan day will be organized in Gent, Belgium this Summer (in August) and will be the ideal opportunity to meet the team ,visit our studio and play Divinity: Original Sin with the devs. You will need to pay for travel and accommodations, but we will take care of all the catering during the day. You'll have fun!

Limited edition Cloth Map: add $25

There has been a lot of demand for this, so we decided to add the lovely cloth map as an add-on. Get it while supplies last. We will remove this add-on once we run out of stock.

Limited edition Kickstarter Signed Poster of Divinity Original Sin: add $25

The Divinity:Original Sin poster, signed by the team at Larian (while supplies last)

Existing add-ons

As a reminder, here are the add-ons that already exist

Digital add-ons

  • Divine Divinity Digital Version (Remastered, HD): add $5
  • Digital Artbook featuring the Art of Divinity Original Sin: add $8
  • Digital Map of the World of Divinity Original Sin: add $8
  • Digital Soundtrack of Divinity Original Sin: add $10
  • Extra Digital Copy of Divinity Original Sin: add $20
  • Beta Access for Divinity Original Sin: add $20
  • Alpha Access for Divinity Original Sin: add $50

Physical add-ons

  • T-Shirt of Divinity Original Sin: add $25 (Tshirts are available in S, M, L, XL and XXL)

  • An Extra Box Copy with Printed Manual of Divinity Original Sin: add $40

In closing

Athankyouverymuch !!!

Are we nearly there yet? The butcher, the editor & Matt Chat

Update #9 · Apr 8, 2013

We're getting very close now! We are less than 15K$ away from our funding goal, and as you can probably imagine, our stress-levels are at an all-time high. There's a slate of announcements lined up to mark the moment, and with a bit of luck, you'll be reading about them very soon.

Today's update is going to be a bit shorter than usual, but that doesn't mean it doesn't contain any good stuff. On the contrary!

Continuing the Butcher quest

In our first update, Axel showed you how our editor worked by scripting a simple quest. In today's update video, Leslie, our enigmatic & brilliant 3D artist responsible for such gems as the dancing whale (featured in Divinity: Dragon Commander), takes charge and shows us how he envisions Axel's quest should develop further. Good stuff!

Matt Chat

Matt barton interviewed Swen about the Divinity: Original Sin's Kickstarter campaign. The one-hour interview can be found here but if you don't have the time to watch it all, here are the highlights, courtesy of none other than Stabbey!

(9:30) Quests aren’t going to hand-hold you through them. There isn’t going to be a “Quest Completed!” pop-up. Instead, your journal will have little parts of information, like “we found a book by a dead guy that talks about lying statues”, later if you talk to a statue, you might find “we met a statue, It might be one of the lying statues from the book”, and if you deal with the statue somehow, it’ll just be a thing, and you may not even realize that it was a quest.
(13 min) In that demonstration battle on the 10-minute kickstarter video, they died three times. That’s one reason why they never showed the conclusion to that battle!
(22 min) The main characters relationship is not specifically a love story. You can certainly take it in that direction if you wish, though. Their relationship is defined by two different axes: Affection and Affinity. Affection is how much they like each other, Affinity is how well they agree with each other on moral dilemmas. So they might hate each other, but work well. You aren’t going to accidentally end up as your friend’s gay lover, it’ll be a conscious choice if you go for that.
(23:30) The main characters are Source Hunters, and one of the perks they get from being trained in that area is that they can talk to animals.
(24 min) No sheep henchmen at the moment. They are thinking about adding weresheep in the game, but you cannot have a deep meaningful personal relationship with sheep yet. You will have to make a tough moral decision about the sheep at some point in the game. And the rabbits. And a cow.
(25 min) I think there may be multiple different ways to try and get your way in a dialogue (Charm/Reason/Intimidate), instead of the current “I agree/I disagree” system. I’m not sure. The context of the situation is also important. I think that for example, the “dead body on the beach” would probably be a Charm or Reasoning situation, and Intimidation would have a penalty.
(27 min) No mini-games. Lockpicking will be item based and dexterity based.
(28 min) The Source (elemental) magic is not just for mages casting spells. It also gives you Source-based warrior and Survivor skills
(28:40) The editor is not about making it easy for a novice, it’s more of a tool to do powerful things. They’ve used that technology (or parts of it) for over a decade to make their games, and that’s why as a small team they have been able to make such big games.
(30 min) They’ll integrate the modding scene with Steamworks, and there will be another TBD thing to centralize mods for those who don’t use Steam. If the community picks it up, Larian will support the hell out of it.
(31 min) “Have you thought of adding any DRM to this?” No.
(32:20) Larian admits that some of the reward tiers for the Kickstarter may not be cost-effective for them.
(33:30) What’s the minimum pledge tier for fans to get the full experience? Just the $25 for the base game, although it does play well with a friend ($40 for the duo-copy pack).
(35 min) If Divinity 2: Ego Draconis had been a PC game, it would have been released a year earlier and in much better shape. Development for Xbox lead to a lot of compromise just trying to finish the production.
(36:10) Beyond Divinity was bad, it was a game they company made just to survive. They never got a dollar of royalties from Divine Divinity (from CDV). They were only able to get a deal to make Divinity 2 because they were going to do it for Xbox. If they asked to do it for PC only, the game wouldn’t have happened.
(37:50) "Why did you end Ego Draconis the way you did?" (I’m going to save my fingers from typing and just link to that spot in my LP. Watch the videos for the actual experience, not the text I added.)
- It goes back to Divine Divinity. They decided not to cut the game at the end of the Council of Seven sequence and instead went ahead and added a new “Wastelands” zone, despite warnings they’d never finish it. (Spoiler alert: It was a huge combat zone with no quests.) The publisher wanted them to show variety in the environments. “If there is not a screenshot with orange stuff, we’ll sue you.”
- For Divinity 2, Swen figured it would be better to stop with a cliffhanger and cut hard, instead of making another weak ending area.
(41:40) Dragon Commander is going to take a lot of people by surprise. The leader writer and animator spend a month in London recording dialogue – more dialogue than they’ve ever done before (Divinity 2 had like 9 hours of dialogue, and it felt like more). That’s just to cater for the choice and consequence in the game. Dragon Commander is probably the most complex game they’ve ever made from a gameplay point of view.
(43:50) “What would you need to personally hear or see about Original Sin to get you to buy it?”
If you invest in it now, you’ll have more fun in a couple of months. If you’re planning on buying it anyway, buy it now and get it better later. It’s future profits from the game being invested into the game before it’s released. They’re not taking your money for an already funded game, they’re taking your money and giving you a much better game (at a discounted price!). They’re not pushing Original Sin as far as it could go because they haven’t enough resources, not enough time, not enough budget.
(48 min) Final thoughts: Other non-human playable races is a huge, impossibly high stretch goal, because it would be so much work, because of how the game reacts to how the players are. If you wanted to play as an orc, they’d have to cater for that all over the dialogue lines in the entire game.
- He’s not keen on full voice acting, because there are more tangible gameplay things that can be added instead for the same price or cheaper.
- They hope to get enough for the Perks stretch goal (650,000), and do things like have synergy bonuses if the party affinity go up if they perform combos with each other, or maybe solo bonuses if they don’t work well together.
- In Dragon Commander, there is an extraordinarily complex depth to your generals/councillors/princesses, because of the way that game was specifically constructed with that in mind. You couldn’t do that for Original Sin at this point, but at the 800,000 stretch goal, they hope to add more depth to party interaction and give the henchmen more personality and story presence, with branching choice and consequence based on how you treat them. Ideally, tying that into the players social stats and perks as well.
- It’s a bit tough to get professional authors in at this part of the development. They’ve worked with a bunch before, but it’s tough it they’ve never done videogame work.
(55:10) The game would work well on the console with a controller, but that was killed early in development. Maybe as another stretch goal in Kickstarter, but they probably would react poorly to that idea.

In Closing

We're nearly there, but not yet. Anything you can do to spread the word will be appreciated, and we'll return the favour by making you a fantastic RPG with a fantastic editor in a fantastic game world. It's an offer you can't refuse!

Announcements, Single Player and Dropping In, Talents and Traits

Update #8 · Apr 7, 2013 · 50 comments

It's over 9000

We have many things to celebrate. We achieved 90% funding yesterday, and just a moment ago, we had over 9000 comments. We cannot say anything else but thanks and still be humbled by all this support and trust you backers are giving us!

We've been getting many questions about how party control in Divinity: Original Sin works and if we had to dumb down the single player experience because of the inclusion of drop in/drop out cooperative multiplayer. The answer is that on the contrary, the game has become a lot deeper and in this update we'd like to explain you why.

We hadn't foreseen hitting the 90% mark this early, so we are improvising here, because we don't have all the resources at home that we have at work, so expect a wall of text :-) Seen as you're RPG players though, that shouldn't be an issue! A lot of questions that popped up are answered in this one, and also further explains the traits and talents stretchgoal. But first, some announcements:

  • Yes, we are working on the "European" distribution details.
  • Yes, Paypal will be available as soon as we reach our goal. It's ready. We just need to upload the page. The pledges via Paypal will count along for our stretchgoals.
  • Yes, the reward tier descriptions are outdated. You should refer to the digital matrix or the physical matrix and read in detail what all the rewards are exactly in update 4
  • Yes, we have officially partnered up with GOG.com to deliver Divinity Original Sin and Divinity Dragon Commander
  • Earlier this week, Swen had a video interview with Matt Barton and that Matt Chat episode should be online soon, just keep an eye on his Youtube channel
  • If you are new here, please do read all previous updates linked to on the main page. Our videos are also always available at our Youtube channel
  • Some numbers you may be interested in:

Single Player Campaign, Drop In/Out Multiplayer

Party-based

You start the game with two avatars in your party. Let's call them Roderick and Scarlett for now. Obviously when starting the game you can name and customize them. And yes, you can also play this game with two men or two women, it doesn't always have to be man/woman.

Roderick and Scarlett are the true heroes of this tale, and they'll always be in your party, but should you feel the need for reinforcements, you can recruit two extra party members.

Split up

Except in a few special circumstances, your party doesn't need to stay together. Sometimes the game will ask you to gather your party first, usually only when going from zone to zone, but our zones are very big (think Divine Divinity big).

But in one zone, including its houses, cellars, and dungeons, it means that you can control Scarlett to explore an underground cave while Roderick buys some fresh fish on the market. (Each hero's henchman will follow his master.)

For example

Because Divinity: Original Sin features a turn-based combat system, this can lead to pretty interesting situations.

For instance: you switch to Scarlett, and in the cave, she encounters a friendly community of unfortunate ghosts, and has lengthy conversations with them, trying to understand why their souls aren't floating towards the Hall Of Echoes.

You switch to Roderick and, shopping around, realize he doesn't have enough gold to pay for his fish. So you try your hand at stealing. Lacking the necessary skills and talents for conducting successful theft, another shopper catches Roderick in the act and calls for the guards. Roderick is a bit short of temper and he's also on a mission to save Rivellon: there's no way he's going to put up with such foolery as going to jail, so he resists arrest and draws his sword.

Turn-based combat starts on the market, and several guards, as well as some market-goers that feel up to it, join the fight. Roderick has a high initiative, and in your first turn, you manage to conjure an earth elemental to even the odds a bit before any of the guards can even make their move. But there are a lot of guards...

I wouldn't wanna be on the receiving side of a fist fight with this giant.

Oops. Now what?

At this moment, you could decide that Roderick needs help from Scarlett, and switch to Scarlett. You could guide her out of the black cove, accross the beach, over the hills and into Cyseal. Then when she would get close enough to the fight, she would automatically become part of combat.Or, you could switch to Scarlett to continue exploring the cave.

While you switch to Scarlett and control her, Roderick and his combat will still be "paused in his turn", awaiting your commands.

Let's keep Roderick stuck in time for a while, and just keep on exploring. As Scarlett ventures deeper into the cave, she stumbles upon a whole bunch of angry undead who attack you on sight. (Why are the ghosts friendly? Why are these guys unfriendly? If only you had talked to more ghosts...)

Is this a pickaxe which I see before me?

1.21 Gigawatts if you think about it

This means that now we have a situation in which both Roderick and Scarlett are in different turn-based combat situations at different locations in the world. You can do these fights one after the other, or you can jump from fight to fight by just clicking on their avatar icons (or using shortcut keys).

And should you ever manage to get the enemies from both fights close enough to one another, then the two combats would merge into one big combat.

Drop-in multiplayer

Now imagine that at this moment in time, in real life, your friend Helen comes in, asking you what you're doing. You obviously say that you are playing the coolest RPG you've played in a long time and ask her if she wants to give it a go. (If you've chosen a duo pack tier in this Kickstarter, you can give her one of your copies!)

Helen joins your game. You, as the host, can specify some options before she joins, and you choose to give her control over Scarlett for example, while you continue playing with Roderick.

Being new to the game, Helen immediately tries clicking everywhere, resulting in her using up all of her mana and getting surrounded by three ugly skeleton miners. You yell, "Wait, it's not an action RPG!"

Seeing that if you let Helen continue, you'll probably have to pay the price of having to resurrect Scarlett, you decide to abandon the fight with the guards and you use your teleporter pyramid.

Teleporter pyramids

Teleporter pyramids are handy little things. There are two of them and they allow the user to teleport to wherever the other pyramid is. Because Divinity: Original Sin allows you throw around everything that looks like it can be thrown around (provided you have enough strength), you can for instance drop your pyramid at one location and then always teleport to that location using the other pyramid. Or, you can just keep one in each of your hero's pockets, allowing them to teleport back and forth.

Roderick materializes just next to Scarlett and joins the fight. His presence is exactly what is needed and together you easily win the fight. Although that ghoul was particularly nasty, with his poisonous fumes...

Concept artist trying to figure out what a ghoul actually looks like. Apparently they wear beak masks to not faint from their own stench?

Objection!

After the fight, you both return to the ghost village in the cave, and notice a ghost who is talking to himself. When you talk to him, you discover that he's experiencing a dilemma. He asks you (a very fictive example in order not to introduce any spoilers) if you think it'd be okay if he tells a friend that his wife cheated on him, even if now the two of them seem to be doing just fine.

The problem is that his friend asked him about a suspicion he has, and now the ghost doesn't know what to do. You immediately pick Roderick's reply: the truth should be told, no matter the consequences! Your friend Helen disagrees and Scarlett picks: "Old wounds should not be opened and besides, it's up to the wife to tell his friend. If they are going to be ghosts for a long time, best not make their time together even more miserable."

In disagreement, the game lets both Scarlett and Roderick decide how they'll handle this discussion.

Scarlett for instance tries to REASON with Roderick whereas Roderick decides that he might give INTIMIDATION a go. Not only do the character's stats come in play, the context of the disagreement also plays in along. In this particular situation, reasoning works better, and Scarlett ends up winning the discussion. (In the background, the game rolled against strength, persuasion and intelligence stats to decide who would win, also taking into account the nature of the situation. The same system is used when talking to NPCs, and trying to change their minds: for instance, a certain NPC may not be easy to intimidate, but may very susceptible to CHARM.)

A game where you'd actually start disagreeing for fun

Personal traits and talents

Now what happens next depends on us making the "personal traits and talents" stretchgoal in our Kickstarter campaign, but let's be optimistic and imagine that we do. The following example is purely illustrative, so don't take it as an example that will be in the game. We hope it will be of course.

Because of the choices Scarlett and Roderick made, Scarlett gains a point in "Empathy" whereas Roderick gains a point in "Righteousness". Since this is not the first time Roderick went for the "Righteous" answer, the game decides it is time to award Roderick the "Righteous" personality trait, which means that from now on demons and other infernal scum will not be able to affect Roderick's mind because of the strength of his principles, i.e. his resistance to mind-control increases.

Had Scarlett and Roderick agreed, and if this would be the nth time that they agreed, then they might actually have gained a point in "party spirit", which would boost the bonuses they'd receive when fighting together instead of alone.

Personality customization

Now because we have this cooperative multiplayer mode and we had to ensure that this particular gameplay element was going to be fun, it means it's deeply integrated into the core gameplay.

That allowed us to do something in single player that you haven't seen before (we think). Other than customizing the looks and stats of your party members, you can also customize their personality. That means that if you're playing alone, and you don't want to roleplay both characters, the party member you're not controlling at the time of initiating a dialogue might actually disagree with the choices you make, just like in the example where we had two players control the party members.

As with all new things, at first sight this might sound like folly, but think it through.

Imagine that this would be Ultima VII, and you would have Duprez (a known womanizer) in your party. In our system, whenever the option to flirt would pop up, you could rest assured that Duprez would go for it, even if you might think it'd be a bad idea. If he'd win the discussion, you'd have to deal with the consequences, adding to the fun and potentially showing you a part of the game you'd otherwise not see, because you'd instinctively have answered otherwise.

Obviously, it's also possible to make the AI shut up or always follow your lead, but we do advise trying out the AI personalities - you'll find it adds to your gameplay experience.

Of course, what's fun too is to roleplay both characters, like we did in the video of update #4. In any case, we're not going to force you to use the cooperative dialog system, but we think you'll enjoy it and agree with us that it's a powerful gameplay mechanic that actually should be present in any RPG that has a party.

And in closing

You make the decisions. It's your party.
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