The Temple of Elemental Evil Interview

Eschalon: Book II

Publisher:Atari
Developer:Troika Games
Release Date:2003-09-16
Genre:
  • Role-Playing
Platforms: Theme: Perspective:
  • Isometric
Buy this Game: Amazon ebay
Once again, we had the opportunity to talk to Troika's Tim Cain about their upcoming turn-based D&D dungeon crawler, The Temple of Elemental Evil. Stay awhile and listen:


GB: In some of the screenshots, we've seen a dwarf wielding a flaming weapon. Are there quite a few items in the game that have magical effects like this? Can you give us an example or two of some of the more powerful ones?

Tim: Yes, we have implemented most of the weapon special abilities in the DMG, since we allow players to use the Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat. In the default party we are testing with, the dwarf carries a flaming greataxe, and the elf is carrying a longbow of frost.


GB: Would you say that most items in the game are purchased from merchants, or found while adventuring? Are you using a random table for item drops, or will they be static?

Tim: Most items are found while adventuring, but some of the best items will not be placed at all. The player will have to make them, with the appropriate feat. Most of our placed creatures have a defined inventory, but we do allow random item drops on randomly encountered monsters.


GB: Will players be able to utilize some of the powerful artifacts from the original module (Fragarach, Orb of Golden Death, etc) at some point in the game?

Tim: Yes, we have converted the artifacts into the 3.5 rules and placed them in the game. However, the player may have to make a tough decision before being able to use a particular artifact.


GB: How will inventory management work in the game? Will each character have a specific encumbrance based on his or her strength?

Tim: In inventory, every item takes up the same space but its weight will be totally and applied to an encumbrance that is based on the character's strength. Some items will stack, such as gems and potions and scrolls, and money both stacks and is weightless.


GB: In the original module, certain spells wouldn't function (or functioned differently) in the elemental nodes. Can you tell us a bit about these elemental nodes and how much of a challenge (if any) they were to implement into the game?

Tim: Actually, we did not implement the special spell rules for the elemental nodes. We ran out of time, and we had the choice to either get rid of the rules or get rid of the nodes altogether. We decided to keep the nodes. Each node is its own little pocket universe made primarily of one type of material: air, earth, fire or water. Each node has some peculiar inhabitants that are found nowhere else in the game, and some interesting items to acquire.


GB: How many NPCs capable of joining the player's party do you plan on implementing into the game? If a player decides to add an NPC, but the party is already full, can you replace one of your party members and send them back to Hommlet to wait for you?

Tim: We have over 30 different NPC's that join the party for different reasons, not counting animal companions and summoned/animated/charmed creatures. You are limited to three NPC followers at one time, and many will object to you ejecting them from the party in the middle of a dungeon. You will need to take them back to the surface or a nearby village, and they will eventually find their own way back home.


GB: It must be fairly difficult converting a 1st Edition module entirely to 3rd Edition. Have you had to deviate from the original module at all during the implementation of some of the side-quests, monsters, NPCs, or magic items?

Tim: Yes, but we have tried to deviate as little as possible. We wanted the experience to be as close to the module as we could make it.


GB: Finally, if you had to pick one location, battle, or quest in the game that is your particular favorite, which would it be and why?

Tim: I like the bottom dungeon level of the temple. It's really beautiful (our artists are wonderful), and it's got a lot of interesting encounters, both combat and non-combat. And it's deadly as hell, too. :)


Our thanks to Infogrames for setting up this interview and to Tim for answering our questions!
Darkest Dungeon II - Road of Ruin Early Access Trailer
Darkest Dungeon II - Road of Ruin Early Access Trailer

Red Hook Studios' roguelite gothic horror RPG Darkest Dungeon II is scheduled


New World Game and Store Update Available
New World Game and Store Update Available

Apart from fixing a number of bugs, the latest update for Amazon


Path of Exile: Scourge Now Live
Path of Exile: Scourge Now Live

Scourge, the latest challenge league expansion for Grinding Gear Games' free to


Sword of the Stars: The Pit 2 Live in Early Access
Sword of the Stars: The Pit 2 Live in Early Access

Following its recent announcement, Sword of the Stars: The Pit 2 is


Disciples: Liberation Released
Disciples: Liberation Released

Frima Studio and Kalypso Media's new entry in the Disciples series, Disciples:


Might and Magic X: Legacy Back on Sale
Might and Magic X: Legacy Back on Sale

Earlier this year, Ubisoft discontinued some of their verification servers, in the


Guild Wars 2: End of Dragons - Third Elite Specialization Beta Event Incoming
Guild Wars 2: End of Dragons - Third Elite Specialization Beta Event Incoming

The third elite specialization beta event for Guild Wars 2 is going


EverQuest II: Visions of Vetrovia Expansion Pre-orders Available
EverQuest II: Visions of Vetrovia Expansion Pre-orders Available

The recently-announced Visions of Vetrovia expansion for EverQuest II is now available


Conan Exiles: People of the Dragon DLC Pack Available
Conan Exiles: People of the Dragon DLC Pack Available

If you're looking to spruce up your Conan Exiles base, you should


Solasta: Crown of the Magister - Primal Calling DLC Revealed
Solasta: Crown of the Magister - Primal Calling DLC Revealed

In order to celebrate the first anniversary since Solasta: Crown of the


Vampyr Next Gen Upgrade Available
Vampyr Next Gen Upgrade Available

If you own a next-gen PlayStation or Xbox console and are looking to


King Arthur: Knight's Tale Release Date Announced and Developer Diary
King Arthur: Knight's Tale Release Date Announced and Developer Diary

Barring any delays, King Arthur: Knight's Tale, NeocoreGames' hybrid between turn-based tactical


Drox Operative 2 Released
Drox Operative 2 Released

After over a year of early access, Soldak Entertainment's dynamic starship action-RPG


Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Update 1.1.0 Live in Beta
Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Update 1.1.0 Live in Beta

Owlcat Games is getting ready to release a major update for Pathfinder:


Blade of Darkness and Its Dark Souls Parallels
Blade of Darkness and Its Dark Souls Parallels

Following the recent re-release of Rebel Act Studios' cult-classic action-RPG Blade of