• Register
Post news RSS Torchlight and Modding

ModDB has a chat with the president of Runic Games, Travis Baldree about their upcoming game Torchlight and it's modding possibilities.

Posted by on

I recently had a chat with Travis Baldree, the president of Runic Games about their upcoming game Torchlight and the possibilities it posses as a modifiable dungeon crawler in the same vane as the epic Diablo franchise. As some of you may know I posses a love for the above mentioned type of game that Torchlight is and modding in general, as of yet I have not really been able to mix the two together and that is what really excites me for the release.

Torchlight uses a program called Preditor (The Professional Editor) which in short is a visual editor (WYSIWYG) with a focus on logic scripts that can be edited simply and effectively. With everything and I mean EVERYTHING being able to be edited within Preditor I'm really expecting Torchlight to catch on within ModDB and the modding community in general.

Travis_Baldree wrote: We've exposed just about everything to modding - you can create new levels, new artwork (our formats are open, so models, textures, sounds, music, etc), new quests, skills, classes, monsters, items, itemsets and recipes. All the stats are exposed for tuning modification, and we use a powerful effects system for skills and items that allows you to do some interesting things with them. Everything is basically editable from inside our tool, which also allows you to play the game inside itself (you can snap together a level and run around it, or make a new skill, or what have you, without starting the game proper). We've also got a visual scripting system that is drag and drop with connectable inputs and outputs, timelines, logic objects and so on. Particle editing is integrated into the editor, as well as game-world structure (dungeons, towns, regions, portals, etc). The UI is also moddable, and all our base filetypes (excepting textures and meshes, although there is an intermediate XML format for meshes) are all plain text until they are compressed. As long as you want to make an Action-RPG, you can pretty much make a new game.

Level editing uses tilesets or otherwise known as building blocks, think of this system much like you would Lego. These building blocks can have any number of triggers, animations, or collisions set too them, you can quite literally create a world that will react to the player and what he/she decides to do or even create a complex trap filled dungeon to explore. It will be very interesting to see how Runic Games is going to allow modders to integrate user created quests within the world as it is at release, will people be accepting user made quests from key NPC's in the game? I sure hope so, creating a world and adding to an existing one really is two different things.

Travis_Baldree wrote: As far as 3d model formats go, we're using Ogre3D's native model formats, and they've got exporters for just about every conceivable 3d package. We'll release our own 3dsmax exporters as well, and probably some models, tilesets, and rigs for people to use as a jumping off point. It's conceivable that we may release the full rig/meshset for the characters (hoping we will), but I can't say just yet - it would certainly make custom skill animations an easy thing for people to do.

The support for modders does seem quite high, in-fact they already have a wiki setup for just that, I have yet to get my hands on the editor myself to have a play and explore the options and abilities myself but it does look very promising! Keep an eye out for this title to drop late next month, I have a feeling it will be a great game for user-made content!

Frozencloud - - 425 comments

Nice. But why do i smell WoW + Diablo :O

Reply Good karma Bad karma-3 votes
Henley Author
Henley - - 1,973 comments

Well it does have a similar look to that of Warcraft 3 but it is also possible because some of the members of Runic are also from Blizzard North and designed Diablo 1 and 2.

Reply Good karma+4 votes
Frozencloud - - 425 comments

Haha i see :).
I swear that mob looks like something from WoW Gnomeregan.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
St.Penguin - - 5 comments

Seriously, take out the player character and I would bet my life that it was a screenshot from Gnomeregan.
Not trying to detract anything from this article though...definitely looking forward to this one.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
NullSoldier - - 973 comments

You can tell when someone lacks knowledge in gaming and experience because they automatically compare something to World of Warcraft.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+7 votes
St.Penguin - - 5 comments

Perhaps your need to be 'elite' is affecting you, or perhaps you yourself lack knowledge of WoW (which is, rather unfortunately, in fact, a game too), but there are a lot of similarities of Gnomeregan in that last screenshot.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+1 vote
Gurra300 - - 891 comments

reason too is also that most people have only playd WoW and have to compare every damn game they see with it, i hear the **** from my WoW nerd friends all the time :/

Reply Good karma Bad karma+5 votes
Loftless - - 41 comments

I hate to support the WoWers here, but if you look at the bottom screenshot in the post above, and compare, here's what you get.

The balcony looks almost exactly from Ironforge, and the border as well. See here:

Also, the enemy is clearly a mechanostrider with a gun turret:

The game has been looking good though. The modding scene will make it that much more enjoyable. Good luck.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+4 votes
technoblue - - 70 comments

Thankyou for bringing this game to my attention!

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Luke_Allstar - - 45 comments

looks realy awesome, but i have some questions
1) when will this game be released?
2) how much will it cost?
3) it say somewhere that the levels are randomized, but how do you do that when you have an level editor where you can set events and such?
4) how much can you modify the game? can you just make new levels with maybe new player models or cann you also change the classes or maybe the whole gameplay itself?

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Henley Author
Henley - - 1,973 comments

- 27th October 2009
- Don't know
- If you click the 2nd part of the tutorial (link under the video) you can see how you can build random levels.
- You can modify anything you see in the game, if you read the entire article all these questions would have been answered.

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Tex1090 - - 148 comments

It says under the PAX 2009 news post on their site:

"Torchlight will be available as a fully downloadable game for US$19.99."

So I guess expect it to cost 20 dollars :D

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
mistermano - - 64 comments

20 bucks? i say totally worth it!

Reply Good karma Bad karma+3 votes
Lez - - 37 comments

do want!

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Bluedrake42 - - 574 comments

who took my post!? >=O

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
DOLBYdigital - - 623 comments

Thanks for highlighting this game and bringing it to my attention.
Looks interesting so I'll keep my eye on it :)

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Kelso - - 50 comments

Can a staffer fix the videos? Audio is way in front of the video.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
MrTambourineMan - - 717 comments

It's based on Ogre3D fyi, tnx for interview!

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
omnifas - - 1 comments

For random levels you have two choices the way explained in the second video tutorial, or you can leave it all up to the engine, which they haven't explain thoroughly in relation with Preditor yet.

The wiki you linked to is actually a fansite's, but most of the info found there is due to openness Runic Games has been with questions related with preditor, and the game in general.

The screenshot, if you seen the full one, it actually looks more dwarvish than gnomish.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
oWn4g3 - - 174 comments

The Maythos beta was great and I hope tbaldtree and his team will make Torchlight an even better game.

Modding support is always a step in the right direction.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Black.Talon - - 9 comments

Can anyone direct me to where to get this Preditor program. I really wish to make some new levels that add some more time and fun to the game. Plus it may help me with a game I am currently trying to create but I have no visual stimulus. Please and thank you.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Post a comment
Sign in or join with:

Only registered members can share their thoughts. So come on! Join the community today (totally free - or sign in with your social account on the right) and join in the conversation.