Inspired by the adventures of Link in the Zelda-series, the intriguing nemesis system of Shadow of Mordor, Fable's choice-dependent progression and the dance-like combat of Bloodborne, Pine brings you an ever-evolving world that provides each player with a truly unique journey.
In the world of Pine, every action, even inaction, has an effect. The direction in which you explore the island of Albamare and way in which you come into contact with its many inhabitants, defines how the world will change, evolve and adapt.
Pine is world-centric, meaning things will happen across the island even without your involvement. Based on principles borrowed from evolution and ecology theory, every single species will try what it can to survive - from small power shifts to the utter extinction of a group, Albamare's living, breathing and constantly evolving world can and will make it happen.
As you embark upon the quest to save your tribe and find a new home, you uncover intriguing details about the history of the island and how the current evolutionary course came to pass.
The island will provide you with everything you need, and as you progress, you will even discover many mysterious and helpful contraptions that will change the way you traverse, interact and fight: Scare away creatures with the Igniter, make your way across large gaps with the amazing Airglider or scale the highest cliffs using strong Climbing Axes!
The island has its share of predators and territorial species. To defend yourself against their attacks or influence the course of action, Pine features a solid and varied combat system, inspired by the "dance-like" attacks and dodges of Bloodborne.
But be wary, as your enemies will learn how you fight: They will observe you, try out different combos against you and physically evolve, to specifically oppose your style! It will force you to adapt to them in turn, so choose your enemies wisely.
Based on their specific needs, some species will try to find shelter during storms or on cold nights, or even move to a new territory in large migrations. The weather can be your ally or your worst enemy, so keep an eye out for what's coming your way.
Inspired by both classical symphonies as well as contemporary game and film music, Pine's soundtrack by Ratchet Audio seamlessly flows through the experience as if it were coming from the island itself.
In the world of Pine, Humans never reached the top of the food chain. In this novel ‘evolutionary timeline’, other species got the chance to develop language, cultivate and become smarter than ever.
You play as Hue, a timid adolescent growing up in an isolated group of Humans, deep into some beautiful pine woods. Traditionally, the tribe you live in does not go into the Out, afraid of the creatures wandering through the biosphere and afraid of losing their safety.
We are filling Albamare's ecology with wondrous locations. It features mountains, plains, forests, beaches and swamps, ready to be explored in an open world-fashion.
The weather on the island is always active, meaning a species on the other side of Albamare might be fleeing from the storm that's raging there. You might even need to take advantage of certain weather conditions to get things done!
Pine is all about your adventure and the way it evolves through your actions and interactions with its world. On your journey you will meet a wondrous cast of creatures, some more, some less evolved.
With every encounter, every interaction, you will learn more about the species you share the island with. Your decisions will alter the course of what all of Albamare will become.
You can choose to befriend a species, fight alongside them, help them to gain territory or even bring them food and resources. But you may also choose to attack them, steal their food or force them to abandon their current habitat and move on.
Your actions will shift the power of balance between Albamare's inhabitants - choose your friends and enemies wisely!
Find pieces of equipment on the island, or trade with and steal from the species living on Albamare! Earn their trust by using armor sets that resemble their cultures.
Each organism within a species looks different. Using procedural algorithms, we give each organism a personality and specialty. Based on their stats and style, they look differently. Natural selection and survival of the fittest will do the rest: the entire species will grow more towards the organisms that are strongest against you.
Let us know what you think in the comment section below! We read all feedback, suggestions and ideas.
It’s taking a bit longer than expected, but we need our core pillars to shine in this demo in order to understand what players enjoy most and least. It’s all about three facets:
Here are some highlights of what we did in October to make those facets fun!
A few weeks ago we shared this early video of some exploration and trading gameplay, which might give you a good glimpse at the state of that! Check it out on Twitter:
First tests showed that exploration is fun, but lacked a bit of context and clarity – hence we’re adding a compass to guide you to the right location.
With a whole new and improved system called Goal Oriented Action Planning, widely used in a variety of games, we put back in domestic behaviors to make sure species also have lives in their homes. They walk around, talk to each other, take naps, sit down, hand things to each other, go to the food location to eat something, and more.
We also setdressed the villages more with these new assets:
It’s been a long time of developing and tweaking the combat in Pine. It’s been a much-requested feature to have a good look at too, and we now feel comfortable with doing so. In the game, we give you a range of weapons to use: swords, spears, bows, slingshots, maces and more. For now we focus on a basic arsenal to test the waters: Amam's Sword, the Hunter's Shield and the Wedgewood Bow.
We want Pine’s combat to be like a dance. Instead of focusing on fast, snappy hack and slash action, it’s important to us that fights matter. To this end, we made things a bit slower and a bit more personal. This makes the focus is much less on killing enemies, and more on fighting organisms with a brain – because the neural network systems powering their behavior becomes a lot more apparent when both Hue and the organism have time to think and decide. Each species is very different in combat. This makes it important to choose your enemies wisely, but also your friends. The Fexel and Litter are ranged creatures, while the Cariblin and Krocker are slower, heavier and focus on melee combat. To be more specific:
The Cariblin is a bit like Hue - they can shield, light attack and heavy attack. They're relatively fast but think well and can counter easily.
The Krocker is definitely a lot slower - but make sure they don't hit you. Every hit does heavy damage, so make your way around them.
The Litter spits at you, which is blockable - but if you want to hit them, you'll have to get closer. You shouldn't step in their acid on the floor.
The Fexel is very evasive and fast, but doesn't have amazing aim. Their bombs have quite a low range, so make sure you keep moving!
The combat design is counter-based – each species has a response to all moves, to that the neural network specialization of behavior is always balanced. Here’s what that looks like in a little graph:
Each organism needs to have at least one move in all these categories. For example, the Cariblin can use his club as a light melee, and do a double-handed attack as a heavy melee. He can block with this club and mace, and can kick to blockbreak. He uses a short or long charge as a dodge break (also sometimes called a gap closer). Our combat system even allows for distinction in culture. We can make some species not fight you all at once, or we can decide they absolutely hate you and will smash you to bits if they get the chance. We can also make chief fights more important, by making those 1v1, while other tribe members cheer you on with taunts in the background, like these:
Combat is something that constantly needs tweaking and polishing, but we feel like we’re getting to a point where it’s unique and fun.
Lastly, we’re super excited to announce that we’ll be showing Pine at Day of the Devs in San Fransisco on the 11th of November! The Double Fine-powered showcase day has an insane amount of good games, check it out and feel free to stop by (it’s free):
This month’s recap is a bit later than usual, but only because we’re chugging along on the demo for the Falconer tier Kickstarter backers - and for...
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