"Because hugging lions is boring."
After a decade of working as a game designer at both small and large game development companies, Thomas decided it is time to chase his own dreams. Operating out of Vienna, Austria's capital city, he aims to grow the 1 man, 1 dog army of Hugging Dragons into a sustainable indie game studio that creates fresh and unique experiences for PC & consoles.
Currently he is working together with a freelance artist on Hugging Dragons' first game, tentatively named "Wicked Lands". Scroll down a bit for more information, follow on Twitter and join the Discord channel to keep up to date!
...to a magical world where adventure and death waits around every corner! You as the player take control of a small village and a few units of lousy scallywags. Your goal is to grow that village and to train and equip those units with powerful items to withstand and finally defeat the ancient evil that attacks every few nights. If you fail, you start from scratch in a new, procedurally generated world. But before we get into the details, have a look at the elevator pitch and some quick key facts:
Fun and crunchy combat is the focus of Wicked Lands. Therefor it is designed to be simple but provide quite some depth, so you as the player can do more of the fun stuff in a shorter amount of time, while never running out of interesting challenges and scenarios.
At it's core there are only a few values: Attack Power, Defense and Hitpoints. Values are kept to low, whole numbers deliberately, so that it is easy to see how powerful, hard to hit and tough something is. There is also only a small amount of randomness built into the core combat system, to add the right amount of thrill and to make sure that even in lopsided battles, a tiny bit of uncertainty remains.
These principles help freeing brain power, so you can divert more of that to think about the interesting stuff: the mechanics, the items, and how to apply them to the current situation.
Enemies are the main source of equipment and experience for your units. Each of them has different behaviour you have to learn in order to master the game. Goblins will try to run away when the battle seems to be lost, Ogres will charge and stun you and Necromancers will rise Skeleton Soldiers and leech the life out of their enemies to heal themselves. Some of these abilities can be countered by clever positioning and using multiple units together, others by bringing the right equipment to the battle. And sometimes you have to hope that another enemy is passing by to "help" you fight that big Ooze before it devours another one of your units.
Having multiple units working together is encouraged, as every unit adjacent to an enemy, except the first, will reduce it's Defense. The AI knows that too, and will try to flank you and to move out of unfavourable positions as well. Water and other impassable terrain will count just as an enemy unit, so flank those enemies with a single unit or reduce their Defense even more!
Different terrain types also have different benefits and downsides. Woods for example provide a defense bonus against ranged attacks and swamps reduce melee defense when being attacked. Hills provide not only a bonus to melee attack power when attacking enemies below, but also increase view and ranged attack range. Together with flanking, terrain can make the difference between a glorious victory or a dead unit and allows you to punch above your weight if you feel daring.
Items play a big part in the game as they significantly alter the capabilities of your peasant units when equipped. They come in different qualities, from uncommon to legendary, and can be acquired by various means such as being bought from different buildings the player can build, claiming outposts, plundering tombs, worshipping the gods or simply slaying that big fat ogre for a chance to get the mace he is trying to kill you with. There are currently more than 50 items in the game, with more to come!
2 Attack Power. +1 Melee Attack Power if equipped with a Torch.
"There is no justice like angry mob justice."
2 Defense. +2 Melee Attack Power. Can't flee from Melee Combat.
Once a day, spawn a controllable Raven with high Move and View Range. Despawns after 3 Turns.
"Very useful for scouting. Not so useful for weather forecasts."
Reduces Damage taken by 3 until start of the next Turn. 3 Uses.
"Helping you to hide the pain since year 128."
3 Attack Power. 2 Range. Ignores 2 Defense. Can only fire straight.
"Dissolves problems into red mist."
Increases Attack Power by 2 during Night.
Makes you as ferocious as a werewolf. "Might lead to increased growth of hair on unwanted spots."
2 Attack Power. When being attacked, does one Melee Damage to the attacker.
"Sir, we are surrounded! - Excellent, we can attack in any direction!"
3 Attack Power. +1 Attack Power for each adjacent enemy after the first.
"Inspires it's wielder with bravery in moments of inevitable doom. Also known as Sword of Stupidity."
Increases Attack Power by 1 and Health gained from Food by 1.
"Mhmm... there are still leftovers from last chicken dinner!"
1 Defense. Increases Attack Power by 1 for each time damage is taken. Resets on end of Turn.
Removes non-magical Debuffs. 3 Uses.
"Feed at least once a day!"
3 Attack Power. +1 Attack Power when fighting Goblins. Apply Slow to Goblins.
When exploring the procedurally generated map, you will regularly find new and interesting places to interact with. Outposts can be claimed to increase your resource generation and get access to unique items and other benefits. Certain enemies have their own retreats where they respawn. Decide if you raze them for some precious loot, or try to find out what other uses that Necromancer Temple might have!
Tombs for can be plundered for loot, but from then on have a chance of spawning ghosts during the night. Shrines provide temporary buffs but can also be used to sacrifice unwanted items to receive powerful artefacts in exchange - or draw the ire of the gods, if the player insults them with the wrong gifts. There are many more of these places, some are quite common, some very rare, and most of them will not tell you all their secrets right away!
Every unit starts as a group of lousy villagers, only equipped with a very basic set of items. Send them out to explore the dangerous lands so they may level up, find powerful items and claim land that should be rightfully yours - or die trying!
Each group of villagers is represented by one leader which has a unique name and appearance. While these are not the your avatars in the game, we want to provide a wide range of differently looking humans, so everyone feels represented.
Want to get in touch? Send a mail or contact us via one of the social platforms.