The format of our Q&A’s will be changing in an effort to bring you more depth to the coming information about Darkfall. I would like to assure everyone that your questions are still going to the team, but now they are selecting one or two a week and doing a feature about that topic. Everyone involved realized that often time you the readers were left wanting more. Other times some of the questions seemed irrelevant, this happened because there were still players asking about it. By changing our format, yes the questions will come slower but this way you will have a clearer image of what the Dev team at Darkfall Online is trying to achieve. From now on this weekly article will be called “WarCry’s Weekly Update”. This week we will start off with a look at the world of Zombies …….. You’re what’s for dinner.
Dead, but not dead enough..
Darkfall’s huge bestiary is a mix of the old, the updated, and the never before seen. This week, we take a look at how one of the true fantasy stalwarts is represented in Darkfall.
Since the dawn of time (1974), role-players have been disassembling zombies in the tombs and graveyards of countless campaigns and settings. The world of Agon is no exception, with shambling belligerents awaiting an influx of fresh player flesh in thousands of unique, hand-built locations – from underground tombs and abandoned keeps, to ruined churches and evil shrines.
Garden variety zombies..
In Darkfall, regular zombies tend to attack in large numbers, while wearing no armor, wielding no weapons, and using only what limbs and teeth that the grave has spared them. As you can see from the image accompanying this text, there is quite a bit of variety in this regard, with some zombies missing limbs, lower jaws, or even large chunks of disgusting corpse flesh.
Even inexperienced characters will be able to handle regular zombies, as long as they avoid being surrounded or grievously outnumbered. Unlike some other games, Darkfall features collision detection, so you’ll have to chop your way out of any corners you let yourself be trapped in.
Called from their sleep by powerful necromantic spells, Zombie Warriors wear armor, and sometimes carry shields, and they are capable of wielding weapons – albeit with limited speed and dexterity. In most cases, a Zombie Warrior’s equipment has been scavenged from some long-forgotten mound or battlefield, and its effectiveness has been severely reduced by rust and rot.
Zombie warriors are more muscular than regular zombies, but otherwise similar, as if they were made from slightly fresher corpses. Zombie Warriors wear ill-fitting piecemeal suits of armor, which were clearly scrounged together from whatever was at hand at the time, before being hastily placed on the warriors.
An individual might wear a plate helmet, a chain mail cuirass, and plate greaves, for instance. All these diverse pieces of armor will be rusted and stained, betraying age and lack of maintenance. A breastplate might have a hole rusted right through it, for instance, while both of a helmet’s horns may be broken off.
Zombie warriors use weapons that are as improvised as their suits of armor, and which look as if their masters have gathered them from half-rusted, broken pieces of weaponry found in some battlefield bog.
Zombie warrior set-ups:
1) Plate helmet with one horn broken, studded leather cuirass, chain greaves. Weapon is a broken-in-half longsword which is being used as a short sword, and which is grimy and dirty, as if it was recently dug out of the earth. The left hand of this zombie is missing.
2) Leather helmet, breastplate which has been rusted through in several places, chain greaves. Weapon is a halberd with its spear end broken off and part of its handle broken off, which is swung like a two-handed axe. Battered wooden shield in left hand.
3) No helmet – and a huge chunk of the right side of the zombie’s skull appears to have been chewed off. Chain cuirass, leather greaves. Weapon: rusty greatmace with extra spikes amateurishly added recently.
4) Chain helmet, bone cuirass, plate greaves. The lower jaw of this Zombie Warrior is missing. Weapon is a thoroughly rusty and well-worn, but complete, longsword. Metal shield in left hand.
5) Leather helmet, leather cuirass, leather greaves. Wields a large composite bow, which seems to have assembled using bones from assorted skeletons. These zombies are quite inaccurate and slow at reloading, but they shoot arrows with a fair degree of power.
Powered by vile and unholy magic, Dire Zombies are the most dangerous type of reanimated corpse. Their bodies are covered by bands of black cloth which has been inscribed with magical symbols, making them appear almost mummy-like, though neither head nor hands or feet are covered. Dire Zombies carry no armor or weapons, but their hands are enclosed in swirling orbs of necromantic magic, with which they deliver powerful blows if they are forced into melee combat.
Dire Zombies are able to attack their victims with necromatic which they have been pre-imbued with by their masters. Dire Zombies tend to stand well back during a fight, blasting the enemy with magic, while the more conventional zombies take care of the close combat.