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A Tale in the Desert 365

Posted by michael
from the not-everyone-gets-to-be-a-pharaoh dept.
Sandy99 writes "A Tale in the Desert is a massively multiplayer online roleplaying game (mmorpg) that has been in development for 4 1/2 years and goes live tomorrow. There is no killing in this game. It is all about cooperation to unlock the knowledge of Egypt. A basic overview is at the official site. Discussion forums are at atitd.net. Maps of Egypt and construction knowledge are at atitdmaps.com. Everything has been produced by a handful of independent developers and a bunch of volunteers. This is also the first mmorpg to debut with both windows and linux clients."
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A Tale in the Desert

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  • no killing (Score:2, Funny)

    by Mantorp (142371)
    boring
    • by Sevidrac (634513)
      Well, maybe you can have curses on buildings and kill people indirectly.
    • Re:no killing (Score:5, Insightful)

      by 403Forbidden (610018) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:39PM (#5306291)
      Ever hear of a little non-killing game called The Sims and how it became a best-seller??

      Killing is not the only basis there is for a video game, or more spacifically a MMORPG, but it is an over used one :\

      Oh and I see they finally release a P2P game in a way that makes sense.... free.
      • by SquadBoy (167263) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:42PM (#5306319) Homepage Journal
        I did plenty of killing in The Sims and so did many others.

        http://www.geocities.com/the_simms_ca/kill.html
      • by chimpo13 (471212) <slashdot@nokilli.com> on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:49PM (#5306373) Homepage Journal

        The Sims would be worth playing if you could kill.

        I'd like to be a burglar or a killer. And I'd like it if I could release hords of locusts and rats carrying bubonic plague fleas.

        If it's a game based on real life, where's the fun? A blurred out visit to a hot tub with a nekkid Sim? It's the violence in real life that makes it fun.

        But it's not, so I have to release hords of locusts myself.

        Just doing a quick scan of crime types on google, Sims should have: Abuse of the Disabled, Aircraft Hijacking, Animal Abuse, Arson, Child Abuse, Domestic Violence, Drunk Driving, Elder Abuse, Fraud, Genocide, Graffiti, Hate Crimes, Hazing, Homicide, Illegal Dumping, Kidnapping, Modern Slavery, Money Laundering, Police Brutality, Red Light Running, Sex Crimes, Speeding, Squatting, Stalking, Terrorism, Theft, Torture, and War Crimes.
        • by greygent (523713) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:36PM (#5306593) Homepage
          As a person who likes to just plain kill things in his video games, I've come up with several ways to kill Sims.

          Try having one go use the stove, and when the sim is using it, enter build mode, and fence him in around the stove. He'll soon burst into flames and die, and there'll be a nice tombstone out front.

          Another way to kill them, is to make them go swimming in a pool, and while they're doing that, enter Build Mode and remove all of the stepladders. they'll soon drown, and a shiny new tombstone will appear in the front yard. There are a couple other ways that I've figured out how to kill them, but there's two for you.

          Be inventive.
          • You sound like a bad horror novel writer.

            I went into the room, and then all of sudden there were no doors. Out of nowhere came Freddie Kruger Sim and starting chasing me!

      • Ever hear of a little non-killing game called The Sims and how it became a best-seller??

        I agree, however, I have no clue how The Sims became such a hit. It is about the most boring game in the world. I see people playing it for hours and just smile as they play. I just don't understand how.

        I was in the The Sim Online beta, again samething. I have no clue how that game can survive let along actually get people to stay with it. I would rather watch paint dry than play The Sims. I guess it's just me.

        • Re:no killing (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Lonath (249354)
          I agree, however, I have no clue how The Sims became such a hit. It

          It's a hit because girls like to play with dollhouses. Boys need their dolls to have guns and they need to blow things up when they play pretend. Girls are happy playing "rl" with their dolls.
    • by dmanny (573844)
      Of course there was no killing in Ancient Egypt either.....
    • You can kill brain cells! [atitd.com]
  • Blood Thirsty (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MankyD (567984) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:33PM (#5306240) Homepage
    It'll be interesting to see if the game can attract the blood thirsty gamers aroud today. It seems that death and chaos are often one of the more amusing parts of games, as sick as it may be to say. GTA seems to demonstrate this quite clearly.
    • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:40PM (#5306301) Homepage Journal
      It'll be interesting to see if the game can attract the blood thirsty gamers aroud today.

      It's all fun and games until some lamer kicks sand in the face of your mummy.

      This brings to mind countless Far Side cartoons...

    • Re:Blood Thirsty (Score:5, Insightful)

      by CVaneg (521492) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:54PM (#5306408)
      Well, I don't know that you're entirely correct. After all the two best selling PC games of all time are The Sims and Myst. Both of which are relatively death and chaos-free. (Sadistic Sims players being the exception.) Of course, your central point probably still stands true with people who consider themselves gamers.
    • Re:Blood Thirsty (Score:2, Interesting)

      by DonkeyJimmy (599788)
      It seems that death and chaos are often one of the more amusing parts of games, as sick as it may be to say.

      I wouldn't really consider it sick to enjoy violence. Humans have evolved as hunters, who need to hunt to survive. In a society today, where we see little or no action alike to what we evolved to enjoy, it's lucky we have something like video games to sate our desire for action.

      Don't get me wrong, I welcome the existance of non-violent games. I think that we have to much importance in gore and violence, but that doesn't make it sick to enjoy.
  • by Mr. Grimm (599800) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:33PM (#5306244)
    If I wasn't already backed up until sometime after the third apocolypse with my game playing. The only answer is for me to quit my job.
  • I clicked on the linux client link of the main site and after displaying one page of script IE just hosed itself. I guess IE tried to interpret the .run file as something and failed. I hope it didn't nuke anyting on my machine....
  • Such graphics... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Xerithane (13482) <xerithaneNO@SPAMnerdfarm.org> on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:34PM (#5306262) Homepage Journal
    I'm thinking The Sims Online has beat them to the non-killing MMORPG market. This game looks utterly bizarre, and since when did Ancient Egyptions have genetically modified crops complete with mutagen agents?

    I'm thinking I must have missed a few Discovery channel episodes. It probably would have been easier for them to reskin The Sims Online and release that..

    I'm not seeing the importance or significance here, they are basing their engine off Cal3d and are releasing the source for their engine, which roughly looks like shit. Parsec just released their source, which is incredibly cool, and their engine looks good.

    For $13.95 a month, I think I'd be pretty pissed off if this is what I got.
    • by alriddoch (197022) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:42PM (#5306320) Homepage

      cal3d is a character animation library, and as far as I am aware eGenesis are just releasing their modified version of cal3d.

      If the graphics are all you are looking at, then you are missing the point. This game is not about the graphics. As I said in my main post, its about political interplay between the players.

      • You mean that crap I get from my family and coworkers, unwanted, for free?

        KFG
      • If the graphics are all you are looking at, then you are missing the point. This game is not about the graphics. As I said in my main post, its about political interplay between the players.

        Oh, you mean like the Sims Online. I'm sorry, but if they want to appeal to an audience, they need to ensure their graphics don't look like ass. People don't want to play a game that looks like it's 10 years old unless they're collectors and it reminds them of the young days of video games. Like playing Super Mario Brothers on the original NES.

        I wouldn't bash it if it were free to play, but they're charging $13.95 for a Sims Online with a tech tree and horrible graphics. My review without playing it is, save the $13.95 a month. I also would never play it, I read up on it and thoughts, "Wow, this looks really gay." I think the same thing about Everquest and TSO. I played EQ, and kept the same philosophy so I don't think it would change by playing it.

        MMORPGs cater towards the portion of people who get off on talking to imaginary people. If you want to pay $13.95 to grow some imaginary grapes, and masturbate to a 40 year old man named "Cleopatra" than go right ahead, I'm not one to stop you. I'm just saying that the political interplay is over-rated, and I don't think this game did a good job with it, as opposed to the other alternatives (TSO, EQ, and all the other MMORPGs)
        • "Oh, you mean like the Sims Online. I'm sorry, but if they want to appeal to an audience, they need to ensure their graphics don't look like ass. People don't want to play a game that looks like it's 10 years old unless they're collectors and it reminds them of the young days of video games. Like playing Super Mario Brothers on the original NES."

          You're speaking crap, utter brainless drivel. If you played this game with a half open mind you'd think the graphics were actually quite good.

          "MMORPGs cater towards the portion of people who get off on talking to imaginary people. If you want to pay $13.95 to grow some imaginary grapes, and masturbate to a 40 year old man named "Cleopatra" than go right ahead, I'm not one to stop you. I'm just saying that the political interplay is over-rated, and I don't think this game did a good job with it, as opposed to the other alternatives (TSO, EQ, and all the other MMORPGs)"

          You're just saying basic crap again. Where is this 40 year old guy called "Cleopatra", oh wait you never played it...

          What a dunce...

          StarTux

          • You're speaking crap, utter brainless drivel. If you played this game with a half open mind you'd think the graphics were actually quite good.


            Uhm, no. Short of running in the special olympics or being blind, I don't think I would find the graphics in this game good. They post screenshots. 5 years ago, I wouldn't have thought they were good. Today, most certainly not.

            You're just saying basic crap again. Where is this 40 year old guy called "Cleopatra", oh wait you never played it...

            It's the average cliche of the typical MMORPG experience, that pretty much everone knows. Including Robert Schimmel who has a whole bit about it during a comedy show. I'm not alone in the "MMORPG/AOL is there for bald and fat 40 year old men to pretend they are 18 bi-curious hot chicks"... I'm glad that you are so literal here, because it really makes you look like an idiot.

            Maybe if you had a real life outside of playing RPGs you would see that the world makes fun of people like you...
            • "It's the average cliche of the typical MMORPG experience, that pretty much everone knows. Including Robert Schimmel who has a whole bit about it during a comedy show. I'm not alone in the "MMORPG/AOL is there for bald and fat 40 year old men to pretend they are 18 bi-curious hot chicks"... I'm glad that you are so literal here, because it really makes you look like an idiot."

              Oh so your life is watching MTV, you're such a dupe...Never heard that viewpoint because I don't hang around other id10t's....

              StarTux
              PS Only really having a go at someone who is basing their entire view on some screenshots, that makes you look far more stupid than the average rock. This game is a large puzzle, but you failed to even fathom that.
              • Oh so your life is watching MTV, you're such a dupe...Never heard that viewpoint because I don't hang around other id10t's....

                That's really funny, considering I don't watch _any_ TV at all. Haven't in years. My life consists of programming, martial arts, chess. I'm assuming you are referring to yourself as an idiot, due to your statement "I don't hang around other id10t's" so you are either self-reflective, or have a poor grasp of english. Either way, it's ok, admitting it is the first step to getting better.

                PS Only really having a go at someone who is basing their entire view on some screenshots, that makes you look far more stupid than the average rock. This game is a large puzzle, but you failed to even fathom that.


                No, I'm basing my opinion of the graphics sucking on the screenshots. I'm basing my opinion of the game sucking by the lame ass fan sites and the other write ups. "You can choose the strand of vine to make wine!" Oh, excuse me while my nipples explode with excitement.
    • Re:Such graphics... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Sprockie (324794) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:19PM (#5306531)
      Comparing this game to The Sims is like comparing your 3-year old daughter's doll-house to Civilization. Sure both games have no combat. They also both don't have any penguins. They are still nothing alike.

      The game has complex "city"-building, puzzles, trade and politics. And like most MMORPGs the game can be played fiercely competitive or extremely cooperative depending on your preferences.

      $13.95 a month may seem like a bit, but you have to compare it to other new MMOs where you have to pay $50 to just get started. At least this game lets you try it for free (there's no charge to download the client and the first 24 hours of playtime are free).

      Sprocket
      - Does the little mermaid wear an algebra?
  • Well.. (Score:2, Funny)

    .. I hope it at least includes sex, drugs and rock & roll.
  • Vir's Odyssey [iceflow.net] is being made. It will have a Linux client before it has a windows client.
  • by Linux_ho (205887) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:36PM (#5306272) Homepage
    God-damned dog. Tail's just at the same height as the coffee table my ice cream's sitting on. I think he does it on purpose.
  • by Steveftoth (78419) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:36PM (#5306273) Homepage
    and I think that the only problem with it is that it will be limiting. The thing about MMORPGs that are sucessful, they appeal to most gamers. Most people who play games can understand that you have to go an kill 50,000 wombats to get a level and collect the shinys. It's as old as video games. The hard core few who spend all their waking days and nights to play those games can because that's the way they are designed. This game doesn't seem to have a limitless supply of things to do as eventuatly you will run out of fun stuff to do.

    Also, MMORPGs give you the feeling of accomplishment even if you are not really doing anything. Even if all you do is kill one or two wombats, you earn a FEW XP and it looks like you are advancing. I don't know exactly how htis game is setup, but if I think that if the players don't feel as though they are always moving forward (like in EQ) then many will not play.

    Also I heard that some of the goals are strange, like you have to get like a hundred (or however many) people to an area and they all have to pray for a certain amount of time or something. And that's a goal. Strange stuff like that. So it could be interisting, I just don't think that it will be as big as many of the other games.
    • I wonder if the time has come for games that have a purposely short lifetime? This seems to be common on television... so why not MMORPGs? Of course, you'd have to time it right, and advertise it to the right people (maybe offer huge prizes), but I think it could work. Just invest $1,000,000 and get $5,000,000 back, and then shut it down ;-). Then who cares if there is nothing else to do with the game?

      --naked [slashdot.org]

    • There is a specific plot line that will be advancing regardless what your character does. This sounds like a cross between a classic Diplomacy game and a table top RPG.
  • Hey (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Azureflare (645778) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:37PM (#5306275)
    Wouldn't it be cool if the players failed miserably, and it all turned into a desert? oh...wait a minute....

    *ahem* Maybe this will be a haven from all the rabid player killas we have all grown to hate in online games. It's nice to see someone trying to create something constructive, instead of completely destructive. The destructive games make me think our culture is perpetually stuck in adolescent mode...heh, well, I guess it's that in combination with everything else ^^
  • by fobbman (131816) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:37PM (#5306277) Homepage
    I can't wait the first Katz story about the rash of young males who, after playing this game, are now running around in the desert digging for stuff. Oh. The humanity.

  • Killing, no killing.. whatever. EverQuest is as successful as it is because of the interaction of the players and other design factors - not because many of use like killing creatures.

    If these people managed to incorporate good, involved game play - then i'll put down GTA3:VC and try it out.

    Also, if it costs and arm-and-a-leg, then see ya (a la XBox live- only $10 month.. Ha!).
  • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:37PM (#5306281) Homepage Journal
    It is all about cooperation to unlock the knowledge of Egypt.

    Shows the developers know nothing about what motivated explorers. Early egyptology was a cutthroat business, funded by people with huge egos (not to unlike how much of North America was explored by botonists seeking to bring back exciting new specimens for their patrons in the old world.)

    A well. Should be fun, after all, you can have lots of fun with Settlers of Catan and it doesn't involve (much) killing.

    • The game is not about *egyptology* its about *egypt*. As in, you're an egyptian trying to figure out how to build stuff.

      And, as the very clueful developers will point out, just because there's no combat doesn't mean that there's no conflict

      I'm looking forward to trying it out.

      -Zipwow
    • It is all about cooperation to unlock the knowledge of Egypt.

      Shows the developers know nothing about what motivated explorers.


      Mostly, it shows that you didn't read the article. The game isn't about Egyptology, it's about ancient Egypt.

      TheFrood
  • Can I be a pimp in the game?
    • That's the kind of gameplay I'm after. I loved GTA, but I hate linear story lines. If i fail a mission twice, I have no interest in failing again, so get stuck.

      But if I could jack a car, drive over to the JrHigh School, sell some crack, steal some kids shoes, and pimp a little, that'd be cool.

  • by silvaran (214334) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:38PM (#5306286)
    A Tale in the Desert, formerly known as Sovereign [slashdot.org].
  • by alriddoch (197022) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:38PM (#5306288) Homepage

    I have played a number of MMORPGs, work on the WorldForge project, and have been playing Tale on an off for well over a year now, and I have found it an absolutely facinating game. Above all else this game is about politics. The tasks that need to be done in order to make progress in the lang of egypt quickly get beyond the abilities of single players, and guilds become essential to achieve anything, and this is where the fun starts. True leadership is required to get a guild functioning effectively, and a guild can be made or broken by the effectiveness of its key members. The democtratic system in the game, which mean that the players can vote to implement almost any rule also leads to some interesting outcomes.

    The various betas ran under wine long before the Linux game came out, so many friends who only play games under Linux have also been joining in. The arrival of the Linux client is most welcome though. I will almost certainly maintain a subscription to this game, and play it when I can, although free time is so hard to come by.

    • and guilds become essential to achieve
      anything, and this is where the fun starts.


      Sounds like working with unions on construction projects. I doubt you'll find anyone who butts heads with the Teamsters that will call this "fun".
      • It also sounds like it could have a bad case of lock-in - where the players who get there first and thus are most experienced (both IC and OOC) form guilds, which nobody who gets there later can compete with; thus a status quo quickly forms and your entire gameplay experience is determined by it.
        • And how is this different from real life? My goodness, a game where money, prestige, status and experience expand the opportunities for advancement. That's practically revolutionary! The funny thing about being at the top, is that you have nowhere to go but down (and lots of folks gunning for your position). In fact, that's basically politics in a nutshell.

  • There is no killing in this game

    Not to sound like the blood thirsty American that I am, but what the hell is the point? If I can't bash in the head of another person, virtually of course, then I don't want to play this MMORPG.
    I want blood, gore, violence, sex, weapons, and some interaction with other people of like mind. If I want to live a violent free life, I would interact with real people in the real world.
    Yes, the real world is not that violent.

    • "If I want to live a violent free life, I would interact with real people in the real world."

      Welcome to Earth, you must be new here.

    • "Not to sound like the blood thirsty American that I am, but what the hell is the point?"

      Thats exactly what you sound like...

      Yes I like kill'em take over there lands type of games too, but I like this type too..

      StarTux
    • "I want blood, gore, violence, sex, weapons, and some interaction with other people of like mind."

      Well, I take it you wouldn't be interested in a game of Tetris then. Oo how about Dr. Mario? It involves killing deadly viruses!
    • Personally, I have a blast playing quite a few violent games -- but they're also usually fast-action arcade games, requiring little thought.

      Sometimes, that's what you want... a stress-reliever or some "instant action entertainment".

      When you're ready to sit down and get immersed in a detailed virtual world, however, I think you expect more. Violence in role-playing and multi-player games gets old and cliche pretty quickly. To me, they all feel like "Dungeon Hack", over and over again - except with different scenery and sounds. I mean, how "immersing" is the same tired concept that you kill, collect items, and then go spend the money/gold to buy bigger and better items?

      A good MMORPG should be more like reading chapters of a novel. (Only it's a novel that's being written as you go along, and there's no "last chapter" or "last page" to come across.) The fact that you can communicate with other live human players is always the "key point" to these types of games, but what makes it "good" or "bad" is how much is built around that basic premise.

      Before I'd play this particular game, I'd want to know that there's some quality storyline unfolding, and lots of interesting puzzles, twists, and discoveries to make as a group effort.
  • Cooking? (Score:5, Funny)

    by chrisseaton (573490) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:40PM (#5306299) Homepage
    "Cooking
    The long awaited cooking comes to ATITD. Food created can increase, or decrease stats."

    People have been waiting for a cooking module? Cooking? COOKING?
  • Well, if anything, you know it's going to be better than "A Tail in the Dessert". That game just grossed me out.
  • by t0qer (230538) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:44PM (#5306326) Homepage Journal
    From the game:Human Body: The test of the Bedouin. You must travel the land in search of the most remote, the most strange and unheard-of locales. In these places you will find altars, and you must anoint these altars with exotic spices and essences.

    So just like all the other MMORPG's out there, I must sit in front of my computer for hours while my character walks and walks and walks and walks.

    Actually though, the game does seem kinda cool. There's some sort of fireworks system where you can create your own particle effects. You have to make wine to increase your "Perception"

    Instead of PVP, you manage your resources until you can build landmarks (Pyramids of Giza anyone?)

    Sort of like Freeciv with a FPS view and massively multiplayer.

    I see this game stealing many hours of my essense :D
  • Funny idea (Score:5, Interesting)

    by koh (124962) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:44PM (#5306330) Journal
    There is no killing in this game.

    Interesting. Even more if they succeed. I like video games myself, and it's just insane how many times you utter the word "kill" while talking about games lately.

    Someone in another post spoke about the "Sims" game being without kills. I have to disagree, since (I'm not making this up) I know at least one person who made her sims starve to death to have some fun and get some ghosts around in the house.

    However, killing is so hyped nowadays that I doubt a game about Egypt and Knowledge will attract many players... Mostly older and world-aware players I guess. Can they make a buck with, say, the US market ?

    Wait and see.

    • In fact, I've spent some time trying to unlock the secrets of ancient Egypt. I've found things called "books" and "artifacts" most useful to me in this pursuit. Even cooperation with these things called " other people" has come in handy.

      This just looks like another boring "find the gem and place it on the alter" game that I grew tired of 15 years ago.

      The older gamer has already done this shit to death, thank you very much. I'm going to go read now.

      KFG
  • by phantumstranger (310589) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:48PM (#5306358) Homepage
    "There is no killing in this game."


    I'm an adult. I'm a gamer. I'm a person that has, not-so-recently, come to the point that the violence in video games has become so terribly overdone that I'm bored with it. This isn't just to say, "Oh, it's everywhere and it's getting played out." I'm distressed that violence has become boring to me. Noticing this brought to my attention that I have become so numb to it that I view all these games as just the same storyline and different characters. I know it isn't that way but the adage regarding some of the more graphic anime there's-only-so-many-ways-a-demon-can-rape-a-lady is spreading to the [M]ature game market.


    For me to find a non-violent game I had to play either [E]veryone or [T]een games (and some of the latter titles are questionable). I'm not trying to imply that the worlds problems fall on the doorstep of companies that make violent games. I just think that there should be more games targeted towards adults that have a mature theme and storyline that doesn't involve overt violence and / or sexuality.


    I want to make this perfectly clear; I'm not trying to rid the gaming market of violence and sex. But as we all know, there is a time and a place for everything. An I'm glad that some people have decided to buck the tide and try out something "new."

    • I'm distressed that violence has become boring to me.

      This is God's way of telling you to move on - to real life violence!

      adults that have a mature theme and storyline that doesn't involve overt violence and / or sexuality.

      I disagree. On this day, my second Valentine's day for which real life sex is not an option, I would like to see more video game sex made available.

      I suggest - Master of Orion 3. There is WARFARE, but there is no violence. Not much alien nookie, either.
  • I am intregued by some of these games that have come out; call me a cheap bastard, but I don't want a monthly bill for something that I would play 10 hours a month if that.

    Wasn't there a p2p MMPORG that apppeared on /. last year some time? IIRC, it was not looking good.

    p2p could mean a free MMPORG; perhaps you pay for updates with new features, items goals and such. All players would have to have the same version to play.

    I thought that Thief would make a pretty sweet MMPORG - Sneaking into someones house and stealing their gold pieces/objects duh art. Fencing them to the highest bidder. Slitting the throats of uppity noblemen. Plenty of room for all manner of characters. Guards, thieves, nobles,

    hehehe - just like what already goes on in many MMPORGs but purposely part of the game.

  • by Dolemite_the_Wiz (618862) on Friday February 14, 2003 @07:51PM (#5306386) Journal

    This is a quote from the FAQ of the game site about what the game is like.

    The game is a blend between city-building games and games of guile like Diplomacy and Illuminati. There's no combat - you must win by smart management and sharp-witted negotiation, not by weapons. The game has a plot that unfolds in response to player actions, and when the story is over, the game ends.

    Illuminati eh?

    I've got to give this game a look solely based on the creators being influnced by this game. I didn't think that anyone played this awesome game. Here's the link to the main Illuminati site [sjgames.com]. Illuminati is, wihtout a doubt, one of the best and most original games ever made.

    IMO, ATITD's biggest problem will come from groups like this [bbc.co.uk] who band together to solve or easily master games such as this.

    Dolemite

    • Far from being a problem, large groups who band together and try and solve Tale are exactly how its supposed to work. The thing is there will be other large groups who have banded together who are also trying to solve it faster than you, and eGenesis are continuously rolling out new content as fast as you can master it.

      The ammount of work achieved by some of the guilds during the betas was trully awesome. It would take one hell of an organised group of people with lots of free time to beat them all.

  • m3g@k!LL: You cheater
    BrainPower: What? How did I cheat?
    m3g@k!LL: Howd you kill me so fast!!?!
    BrainPower: Er, I didn't kill you. I was just trying to give you gold...
    m3g@k!LL: awps r 4 l00z3rs dipw33d...
    BrainPower: awps? I don't get it. Are you calling me names?
    m3g@k!LL: no i mean awp snipers lamea$$
    BrainPower: Sniper? This isn't counterstrike bozo...
    m3g@k!LL: You have an aimbot
    BrainPower: Er, there are no aimbots
    m3g@k!LL: KILLING SPREE! I' fukin roxx!
    BrainPower: ???
    m3g@k!LL: This game suxxs, I cant kill. I'm goingto play unreal 3000...
    BrainPower: ...

  • When/where is the OSX client? Borshki bork bork!
    • It's not actually a linux client, it's a linux-x86 client. It won't do you any good if you run linux-ppc, linux-alpha, linux-mips, linux-m68k, linux-sparc, linux-hppa etc., etc.

      Calling it a "linux" client is like releasing a widget that only works on Fords, and calling it a "widget for cars".
  • From the FAQ... (Score:2, Interesting)

    The game has a plot that unfolds in response to player actions, and when the story is over, the game ends.

    And then what? Everyone's account gets deleted? They close up all the servers and start developing a new game?

    The players have total control over the laws of Egypt. You can create any laws that are needed to maintain order. This is necessary, because it is easy for players to interfere with each other in their quest for financial gain.

    So the first person in makes it illegal for anyone besides him to make any laws. Oops.

    I remain unconvinced.
    • And then what? Everyone's account gets deleted? They close up all the servers and start developing a new game?

      Of course, Egypt has hung around now for something on the order fo 5000 years....
  • Note on Prices (Score:3, Informative)

    by Caedar (635764) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:16PM (#5306514)
    Since there's no box cost whatsoever, if you play for less than 50-60 months, it's actually the same price. There's a whole lot of ways to look at it, like: 50-60 months of game time same fee as EQ. (Even for me, a crazy 2-year beta tester of it, that's too much play time. :P) 4~ months of game time at $13.99 free. You save even more if you buy multiple accounts, etc. Plus, remember that you get free trials for it.
  • ... a couple of months back. While there's no combat - not even PvE (critter-whackin') - it's still a very, VERY involved game. It's the achiever's/tradeskiller's wet dream come true. I'd play it come release, if it wasn't such an addicting game. I don't *want* to be growing roots in front of my computer. :)

    Don't knock it 'til you've tried it, gang. I believe there's going to be a free trial made available.
  • Free Trial Period (Score:3, Informative)

    by darkwing_bmf (178021) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:28PM (#5306568)
    In case you didn't know, there is a free trial period of 24 hours online time or 30 days of real life time (which ever comes first). I must admit this game takes some getting used to (be sure and read the game guids on atitd.net), but once you learn what to do, it can get pretty addictive. One of my favorite things is the tech tree... any technologies that are unlocked, are useable by all. Of course research takes enough resources to open that most can only be opened by a group effort, which I think is pretty cool in an online game.
  • by darkwing_bmf (178021) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:40PM (#5306604)
    $13.95 / month, no "box" fee.

    Free trial - 30 days or 24 online hours, whichever comes first.

    $14 sounds expensive, but consider you save $30 dollars by not having to buy a box.

    It ends up being equivalent to a game that costs $12 / month that you buy at your local store for $30 and you play over a year.

  • by darkwing_bmf (178021) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:49PM (#5306637)
    The German Language version of A Tale in the Desert can be found here [kemet-deutschland.de].

    It's called Kemet and it is already live.

  • Great Game (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tom (822) on Friday February 14, 2003 @08:58PM (#5306670) Homepage Journal
    I've downloaded the game this afternoon, and have been playing it pretty much continuously since then.

    It's a killer for everyone who's bored of the FPS crap. And it's a great cooperative game, something that's been missing from most games recently (I loved Rainbow Six cooperative back when I still had windows).

    One thing they did right is actually rewarding teamwork, and rewarding being nice to other people. I was in the game no 10 min. when someone volunteered to be my mentor and guide me through the first steps. A while later, I started a very productive cooperation with my neighbour at the river ("hey, I'm going to get some wood, should I fetch some for you, too?" - "sure, need any firebricks? I made more than I need right now.").

    It's a great game. Got me hooked right away, and that doesn't happen often.
  • Am I the only one that thought deserts were made of sand? All 4 screencaps on their front page show grass.
    • by leshert (40509) on Friday February 14, 2003 @10:56PM (#5307064) Homepage
      Am I the only one that thought deserts were made of sand?

      I sure hope so, or else the state of geography education has gone downhill fast. All desert means is that the average rainfall per year is a given, arbitrary level or less. The sagebrush country of the eastern part of the state of Washington in the U.S. is desert, as is most (all?) of Antarctica.

      All 4 screencaps on their front page show grass.

      Well, let's see what geography and history we can dig out from our junior high days. If I recall correctly, a large river runs through Egypt. You may have heard of it; it's called the Nile. Also, given that people have been digging up three-thousand-year-old human corpses from big stone tetrahedrons, apparently built by humans, we can deduce that a civilization has existed there for a while, and you can be pretty sure they didn't eat sand and scorpions.

      From those two facts, you can deduce that while a good part of Egypt may be desert, the part that's been heavily inhabited for the last few millenia must be capable of sustaining some sort of vegetation... and a lot of it. <grin>

      But to your point, yes, just like in real Egypt, there is a heck of a lot of sandy desert in the game world. Problem is, just like in the real world, there's no reason anyone would want to build homes, towns, or anything worthy of a screenshot there.

      But you could, possibly, make the argument that the title is misleading. I think if you take up the issue with the developers, you'll learn that "A Tale in a Group of Loosely-Affiliated Oases Located Throughout a Region Otherwise Consisting of Sandy Desert" was rejected, because it wouldn't fit on the splash screen.
  • Can I... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Whitecloud (649593)
    It is all about cooperation to unlock the knowledge of Egypt.

    Can I assemble a team to excevate under the sphinx and haul out that hidden chest? Can I find a hidden chamber where if I place my staff correctly the sunlight will illuminate a path from the medallion down to the secret resting place of the Ark of Covenant?

  • Why do so many game makers screw up the most basic part of the game: installing and paying. I have examined there site and it is a big confused jumble of gobblygook. A lot of games sites are like this, but most of them have a box and cd that gets you to the starting line.

    Where is the starting line? Oh, I can figure it out no doubt, but will I bother?

    Why not have the home page for this game be nice clean graphic with a signup and install button. Sure, have some tabs to the gobblygook. But in the main as a player, I don't want to have to surf around the site for the right voodoo doll to get thing up and running.

  • by zorg50 (581726) on Friday February 14, 2003 @11:09PM (#5307094)
    and I have to say that it bored me out of my mind. Be prepared to spend hours upon hours doing nothing but clicking on things over and over and over, and running for about 45 minutes to get to places. The whole game revolves around building things, and it takes a LONG time to get the necessary materials collected, grown, or made. That being said, there is a sense of satisfaction when you DO manage to build something impressive or complete a task.
  • by rice_burners_suck (243660) on Friday February 14, 2003 @11:35PM (#5307169)
    I've read the description and it sounds relatively interesting. Too bad it doesn't contain any violence. At the very least, I think that various groups of scientists, on their mission to unlock the secrets of Egypt, should get into a big war with each other, thereby turning the game into a blood and guts shootout inside the pyramids, whereby all sorts of secret chambers are discovered (and the pyramids are nearly destroyed by all the violence). At the end of the game, the truth would be discovered--that the pyramids are used to house big huge weapons, and the game would take on a new twist, kind of like the way Doom II takes a new twist when you find the BFG-9000, except there would be MUCH more blood and guts, because the amount of guts in DOOM is not nearly enough. Of course, the violence should stay IN the game. We don't need any more of that crap in real life. (Man, I would hate to be a cop... The shit they have to deal with. One minute, you're changing a flat tire for some old lady; The next, you're in some alley blowing some drug dealer's head off.)
  • Geesh

    Who do I have to kill around here for them to do some killing in this game???

  • Great Game (Score:3, Insightful)

    by quantumz (33262) on Friday February 14, 2003 @11:59PM (#5307242)
    Beta 3 of ATITD just wrapped up about a month ago. I have been playing since early in Beta 2 and I can without a doubt say this is one of the best MMORPG's I have played. All of those who are posting 'game sucks no killing' would obviously not find the appeal in this game. It is meant for a more intelligent community as opposed to the games that cater to your average hack and slash fan. This is a damn good game, well thought out, and with friendly and responsive developers. I encourage everyone to play. Game starts Saturday the 15th at noon. '/chat quantumz' if you want to get mentored!
    -quantumz[HoM]
  • by Mulletproof (513805) on Saturday February 15, 2003 @01:20AM (#5307459) Homepage Journal
    >>You have entered the dark and dusty remains of King LaLa's tomb. A light breez wafts across your torch, causing it to flicker for a moment. In front of you, the path branches into three directions. Do you go STRAIT, LEFT or RIGHT?

    PLAYER> RIGHT

    >> As you make your way down the stone path you see something half buried in the crumbled remains of the path. It looks dangerous.

    PLAYER> LOOK

    >> As you crouch down to take a closer look, you are shocked to find the ancient septor of Tutu Ramen blocking your progress!

    PLAYER> ATTACK
    EQUIP?> CHISLE

    >> 3D4 = 13[8] Hit!
    >> Player does 3 points of excavation!
    >> Ancient Septor appears unphased!!

    PLAYER> SPELL
    CAST ?> WHISK

    >> Player casts WHISK! 2D4 Dust removed! Def -3, Agility -5!
    >> Ancient Septor is shaken!

    PLAYER> ATTACK
    EQUIP?> CHISLE

    >> 3D4 = 7[5] Hit!
    >> Player does 2 points of excavation!
    >> Ancient Septor DEFEATED!!!

    >> You gained +20 Experience
    >> LEVEL UP!
    >> ATTACK: +1
    >> DEF: +2
    >> AG: +1
    >> MG: +3
    >> You got one ANCIENT SEPTOR!
    >> 11 Gold found!
    >> LEARNED NEW ATTACK! "COMPRESSED AIR"

    Sounds fun. Where do I sign up for Beta?
  • by iamsure (66666) on Saturday February 15, 2003 @12:09PM (#5308698) Homepage
    Okay, so I read up on it on both sites, got fairly interested for me and my fiancee.

    I download the client, and run it. First choice: Official server or builder server. I guess official server. I create a player, and connect. Once I do, I get "This server is for builders, GM's, and Expert mentors". Hmm. Thought thats what the builder server would be for.

    Okay, fine, so I do the dance for the builder server.

    This time it says its only open to Builders. Ooooooookay.. back to the official server. By this point its 11:10pm EST (2/14/02).

    This time I actually get in! Yay! I see the landscape, the players, and it looks pretty cool. I ask for a mentor, and I get one: "Bellah". WooHOO!

    But wait. Bellah informs me that there isnt any mentoring that night, and that the server is going down. (huh?!) She says to try again tommorow. I look around, try out the interface for a few minutes, and then, just as she said, the server goes down, and no further connection can be made.

    So I sleep, and this morning I attempt to login again. I get the same "only open for Builder's, GM's, and expert mentors", only this time, its totally consistent.

    This, according to their website is their launch date. Great concept, but honestly, how the hell do they expect to get, gain, and keep players when the first 12 hours after a slashdot posting you cant even SEE the game?!!?

    I'd love to play it..

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