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Magicka Sequel Planned, Console Version a Possibility 62

Posted by Soulskill
from the deja-vu-all-over-again dept.
Indie action-adventure game Magicka has been an unqualified success since its launch in January. While work is still underway on the original game, the CEO of publisher Paradox told Joystiq that a sequel is not in doubt: "When we — and I'm not saying 'if' — but 'when' we are doing a sequel to this game, it's going to be done on a totally different technology. It was super buggy at release. We addressed most of them in the first week, but there are still issues with laptops and a few other things. It's due to the engine that we produced the game on." He also indicated that console ports of Magicka are a strong possibility.
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Magicka Sequel Planned, Console Version a Possibility

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  • by am 2k (217885) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @03:42AM (#36032816) Homepage

    Yes, they rolled their own engine based on XNA, which seems to be very picky about graphics cards. I got it on Steam, but still haven't been able to run it, even though my system is well within the specs (runs Crysis2 just fine etc). Crashes with some Direct3D exception.

    What made me angry was their comment on the Steam forums about those isses was (paraphrased) "Do you want us to make the game compatible with a wider range of cards, or add more features? Obviously we opted for more features." If so many folks can't run your game because it's so picky, they don't care about more features, because they're never going to seem them.

    • I have a lower end graphics card from a recent generation, but when I tried playing even the main menu was chugging. This title definitely isn't on my list of games to check out again when I fully upgrade my computer. I don't think I bothered getting far enough that it would start crashing though!

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Upgrades wouldn't help anyway. I have a Geforce GTX 460 which could run cirlces around that game. Yet I cannot play it due to graphic bugs.

        The game wasn't "super buggy" at release. It was super buggy two weeks ago when I last tried it.

        • by Jesus_666 (702802)
          There's lies, damn lies and Magicka patch logs. My graphics card (Geforce 8800) handles the game just fine but it has an annoying tendency to randomly crash when moving between areas that makes it impossible for me to finish the first act. Between that and the game's pathetic excuse for a multiplayer mode (seriously, Gamespy is leagues ahead of Magicka) it's been a huge disappointment for me.

          Magicka has a nice humor but that doesn't do it any good if it simply won't run properly.
          • by Whorhay (1319089)

            I'm using two software SLI'd 8600's and the game runs pretty smoothly with some exceptions. Those exceptions being that the menus are very sluggish and stuttery, and sometimes I get seemingly random game crashes. I haven't finish the Fafnir chapter because I always crash before reaching him.

            Even with those issues though I've gotten my money's worth out of it easily.

            I haven't bothered with multiplayer because multiplayer rarely interests me unless it's an MMO.

    • Take a look at StarCraft 2. It's beautiful with a wide range a support-- and even functions well on low-end systems with integrated graphics on low settings. Needless to say, it isn't that they can't make it function better, but merely that they're unwilling to spend money/time on polishing their game. It's a shame too, Blizzard has the defining edge in gaming with enough money rolling in to develop portal technology for shower curtains, you'd think someone would be taking notes.

      • by Whorhay (1319089)

        Starcraft 2 is also essentially a reskin of a million other RTS games. Yes it looks pretty and runs on everything from a Ti-85 to the latest gaming rig. But it also was developed by a behemoth studio over the course of many years with a budget that could fund several small nations.

        Magicka was developed by ten or less people in much less time with a budget to match. The gameplay is actually inovative and original. And while I haven't played through either game completely Magicka's story line even seems to be

    • For $9 (if you didn't pirate it), give your complaints a break. These people were not expecting such a huge success the thought they would sell 3000 copies over the ENTIRE LIFETIME of the game, instead they got a HUGE SUCCESS despite the games flaws. It speaks to how fun the game is given the game industries AAA rehashes every year. Magicka was a giant breath of fresh air - a return to gameplay finally.

      • by am 2k (217885)

        I didn't ask for my money back. However, especially with the huge success you'd think that they'd have some time for getting the thing to actually work.

        • Problem is they are rookies, lets not forget many triple AAA games suffer from the first game being rough (mass effect 1 vs mass effect 2, Assassins creed 1 vs AC2) lots of games are developed where they are not finished and buggy on release and some bugs never get fixed

  • Magicka (Score:4, Informative)

    by ledow (319597) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @03:50AM (#36032846) Homepage

    1) Slashvertisement.
    2) I played the demo - seemed okay, seemed to make good progress, interesting ideas, had to restart from a checkpoint a couple of times but nothing too taxing etc. Bought it on that basis.

    Had to re-do everything I'd done in the demo (in fact, in a worse way because there were some vital elements that weren't highlighted in the full game that had been in the demo until they patched them). Then realised that save-"checkpoints" only worked if you didn't quit the game in between.

    So you struggle through a level - get right to the end, die. You restart and restart from just before you died but then if you choose to close the game and try again later - bam - right back to the very start of the level. I didn't get past more than about 30 minutes of actual gameplay (after many hours of trying) and the developers have zero interest in changing it because dozens of complaints on the forums.

    Yes, if you sit down and wish to play it through in one session after reading up on every spell combination and memorising them all and then just spamming the most powerful ones, you can complete the game in one sitting and never hit the issue. But if you want to PLAY the game and experiment (which is kinda the selling point of the game), then you're stuffed and find yourself re-treading old ground constantly (with extended cutscenes etc. each time) over and over and any progress you make better be a LOT of progress or it won't save between sessions even if you've touched a "save" checkpoint.

    And then they sold out and just produce a bucket of odd DLC for it without bothering to fix many of the issues. And that's from someone who had a relatively smooth ride bug-wise because I tried the demo and read the specs beforehand, but it still crashed out on me a couple of times (it doesn't matter "how often", games should not crash out). After the first two days of trying, I literally just left it to linger on my Steam account and haven't tried since.

    I never even tried to play it multiplayer because all of my friends steered clear of it but the single-player is all but impossible if you can't dedicate a whole day or two to completing it. Even then, the multiplayer had ridiculous network traffic sizes that made it mostly impossible for four-people on ordinary broadband connections to play together (and there were all sorts of sync issues).

    Basically, it was a really, really, cool idea that they buggered up by being too focused on selling instead of fixing. And you should look at the Steam forums and the number of complaints about "my super-duper graphics card can't run this at all".

    • by RogueyWon (735973) *

      Yeah, the savegame issue was a killer for me. I was enjoying the game, but after accidentally losing half an hour of progress due to quitting the game a few seconds earlier than I was supposed to, I gave up on it. I'm sorry, but there really is no excuse not to have a proper quicksave feature - particularly in a PC-exclusive game. I know there are people who try to defend games that try to screw around with their save systems "oooh, it adds tension because there's a penalty for failure" or some rubbish. The

    • Did you ever consider that you're just terrible? Back in my day if you turned the game off you were done. If you died 3 times before getting X amount of points and getting a free play, you were done.

      I'm 23 years old, and all I can think of is this: Get off of my lawn.
      • by ledow (319597)

        I'm 32. I have 300+ games on my Steam lists, most of which I've completed at one time or another (and my Steam account was made from my original WON copy of Half-Life which saw thousands of hours of play before Steam even came along). Hell, I completed Nonterraqueous before you were even born, and games of that era were nigh-on impossible to complete (especially as most of them had no saves at all, or Pause most of the time).

        I never mind being bad at a game, so long as I can attribute it to: bad reactions

        • by lymond01 (314120)

          I played Rogue neé Nethack on Dec Alphas back in college. You couldn't save and you only had one life. And we liked it that way. We loved it, and that's a fact. I remember one session, we called them study breaks since most of our time was spent in the computer lab anyway what with trying to fit in 38 engineering classes and 5 humanities into 8 semesters there was barely time to sleep never mind play Nethack and midnight frisbee golf...but I digress. There I was in the 22nd level, already wielding

  • by ZackSchil (560462) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @04:01AM (#36032888)

    I bought Magicka and while it's incredibly fun, it's also completely broken. Singleplayer is buggy as hell and multiplayer straight up doesn't work. I tried playing online with a few friends and it was an absolute blast but after a while, events stopped triggering, we'd get stuck in cutscenes, if anyone had network connectivity issues we'd have to start the level over again entirely... you can't rejoin a game in progress. After 4 hours of the first two levels over and over, we gave up. We got to a point where we'd finish a certain battle and then nothing would let us continue. We tried ten times or so restarting the server, restarting the game, reinstalling the game, nothing.

    It's so painful because underneath it's one of the coolest games I've played in a really long time. But as much goodwill as that gets from me, it's not enough to overcome the fact that I purchased a game that essentially doesn't work. And not in a hardware, oh my PC setup is weird, thing. It runs beautifully. Graphics are glitch-free, frame rate is high, everything is great on that side of things. This is the sort of problem where actual game logic is broken and there's no way for me to troubleshoot my way around it.

    If the developer is going to start planning a sequel before fixing this game, than consider me a customer lost. I very strongly suggest all of you avoid their products as well.

    • The big bugs have all been patched. Some minor glitches remain, but nothing that takes away from gameplay. Give it another try. I've been able to run through the game with friends without a hitch for a while now.

      • by ZackSchil (560462)

        The experience I wrote about happened this past Friday, when I bought the game through Steam. We played version 1.3.6.1 and encountered no fewer than 5 game halting bugs (had to restart area/restart server) and one game breaking bug where we could no longer progress.

        I don't know what to say other than it's still very much broken.

  • At first I thought (albeit off topic for the normal Slashdot crowd) this was going to be about Puella Magicka Madoka getting a sequel. I know its considered one of the best (non-pornographic) adult anime of the last decade or so but seriously...
  • Okay, so the game had little story, got a little easy near the end once you learned some good spells, and it has little replayability. But the spell building mechanic was a brilliant contribution to gaming—something I think will influence many RPGs in the future. I can't wait to see how it gets refined in triple-A RPGs.

    And the inside jokes were great. Every so often you hear PR-speak about how a game was designed by gamers for gamers, only to cringe at things you know any gamer wouldn't have done.

    • by mctk (840035)

      I have to admit that the negativity in the comments is surprising to me. I totally agree, the spell binding was genius. When I started playing, I was surprised at the lack of Mana meter. "What? So I can just keep casting spells over and over? This is going to be stupid easy." Not so! The spell-casting limitation was shifted from some arbitrary in-game number to the skill of the person actually playing. Casting spells finally feels like you're doing something. I hope more games pick up on this idea.

  • by Cederic (9623)

    I have a lot of games released by Paradox. They make some fun games with excellent mechanics.

    Europa Universalis III: Crashes so often it's unplayable
    Europa Universalis: Rome: Crashes so often it's unplayable
    King Arthur the RPG: Crashes so often I don't dare even try the expansion, despite owning it
    Hearts of Iron III: Didn't even bloody start

    Hopefully the ones I haven't tried yet but got in a Steam bundle will be more stable. I'm not holding out much hope though.

    • I want to buy from them as they do not put any DRM in their games. I didn't know Magicka was so full of bugs so I wont be buying it. I was going to buy it as a reward to me after I finished renovating my place. Most of their other strategy games look way to heavy for me to play. I can't give that amount of time over to something any more.
      • You can try the demo to see how it runs, of course, but my experience is that Magicka is perfectly playable these days.
    • by ledow (319597)

      Wow - thought that was just me. Although Magicka wasn't too bad on my hardware in terms of compatibility, I still got crashes, and those other games are currently sitting uninstalled on my Steam list.

      I rarely check the publishers but you're right, there's a common theme there.

  • I'd like to play the game properly, but I'm suffering a high level of stuttering in the game despite having decent hardware, and I'm not the only one according to the Steam forums. Even the developers aren't sure why some people get the stuttering and others don't, but hey - let's move onto the sequel before fixing this eh!

    Complaint will be rescinded if they surprise me by fixing this soon. :)

  • Only 7 people developed Magicka and 2 of them are coders. There have always been one of them in games Steam forum answering questions and taking suggestions. Something what players have never got from hollywood budget game developer groups what includes dozens/hundreds of developers. It is great to see that indie game developers who at least cares about players and does what they can with their knowledge and skills to fix bugs.

    Magickas humor is to stick 4 players together where everyone shares their same v

    • by ledow (319597) on Thursday May 05, 2011 @05:26AM (#36033170) Homepage

      Sorry - I don't see the developer support that you do - there are dozens of people basically saying "I've bought it, I meet the specs, it just doesn't work" and there's nothing but the promise of possibly a future patch once they "lock down the issues". (I have no technical problems in terms of performance, but I've seen the odd crash - just not enough to disturb me yet).

      Lots of people cried out for savepoints, which is literally half-a-dozen lines of extra code. "We'll look into it", from the very first day of release - nothing, and no decision, 4 months later. Network multiplayer was borked for most of that time and is STILL the heaviest bandwidth I've ever seen on a game (and still on the "To Do" list that the developers post on Steam forums every now and then).

      Yet in that time, there's been 2 entire DLC's. It's called chasing the easy money. That's fine. But *my* money isn't easy, so they won't be getting any more of it.

      They might be there on the support forums but they are basically there for reassurance - actually getting anything done is rare. When was the last patch that actually *changed* something? A month ago. What did it change? Mostly crashes. What did the previous SIXTEEN updates fix? Mostly crashes.

      Good things to fix, but 17 updates to get rid of some huge, major, quite obvious crashes and yet they focus mainly on two DLC's (three if you count releasing a tiny little weapon to start you off as a DLC - offered for free with early purchases).

      And there's no way I'm subjecting three of my friends to the issues that just I've experienced with it (and ignoring the huge numbers of people still reporting "game doesn't even start" or "game crashes" on the forums) and certainly not by giving them another three lots of money.

      • by Fri13 (963421)

        Dont mistake support and developers skills. Magicka started as school project so they seems to be a newbloods in coding not knowing nice tricks as many on slashdot does. But it is true that they have gave lots of support. Implenting new features (balancing game, fixing problems of existing ones) and, yes, causing new bugs as well. Thats as well the black humor of the first free suite what was with broken sword, staff of bugs and multiple times patched robe...

        And yes, forums have lots of posts that game does

      • by IICV (652597)

        Yet in that time, there's been 2 entire DLC's. It's called chasing the easy money. That's fine. But *my* money isn't easy, so they won't be getting any more of it.

        There's been two DLCs? I thought it was just the Magicka: Vietnam DLC? Unless you're counting the Wizard's Starter Kit, which barely even counts - it's just a different hat, sword and staff. And if you're counting that, then there's been three DLCs - there was also the buggy release DLC, which includes a tattered robe, a broken sword, and a staff

  • Really? Unqualified?

    "It can still be hard to find a game and the game browser is missing a dozen basic components, but the potential for the perfect game we saw at preview is re-emerging."

    "It's long, it's tough, it's huge fun, and it's cheap. But it will never be perfect."

    Some of us do read the articles you link...

  • I've never even heard of this game. The magic system sounds like fun. [wikipedia.org]

    • by Phydaux (1135819)

      It is fun. It's one of my favourite additions to gaming in a long time.

      You should try the demo. You'll get a complete taste of it (if the game runs on your hardware).

    • by Liambp (1565081)

      I absolutely loved it. The magic combinations are a complete hoot. Watch Total Biscuits play through on Youtube for a good aided of what the game entails.

      I feel sorry for those folks who couldn't get it to run but I really do believe Magicka is an important gaming milestone.

  • Wow, so many non-positive reviews... I simply love Magicka - and have had it for what, like a month now... I've experienced very few bugs, one or two crashes from the first version I had of the game, and it runs perfectly fine on my machine too!

    I will admit that the networking is pooh - who the hell requires you to connect to the Internet to play in LAN mode? Kind of defeats the purpose (and here in RSA we're stuck with poor bandwidth and bad connections - so it makes it difficult to "start" a game - even
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Hopefully this time they don't rely on Steam for its multiplayer capabilities so they can release a version that is Steam-free. They had to cancel the non-DRM-fucked version because of that.

    http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/showthread.php?527049-Magicka-Weekly-Community-Update-18th-of-March-2011&p=12198554#post12198554 [paradoxplaza.com]

  • tried it, found the gameplay way too intense.

    1. the area one can move in is small, maybe a screen maybe less (depending on the stuff in the scene, like water).

    2. enemies moves damn fast!

    3. you need to key in the spells over and over. no way to key one in once and have repeat, or even store a couple on a hotkey for quick access. Oh and lets not forget that you can direct the effect of the spell towards yourself by hitting the wrong button.

    So here you are, running circles with the enemy barking down your back

    • by nschubach (922175)

      Call it cheating, but I just programmed a set of spells into my G15. ;)

    • by Whorhay (1319089)
      Are those all things you consider drawbacks? In my opinion those are some of the elements that make the game really great. It makes the game a real challenge. Too many games have gone the route of making the player too powerful and the game might as well be a giant cutscene. My only complaints have been that in a specific chapter my game always crashes before I can reach the end and sometimes it seems like the game is dropping keypresses for summoning elements. The crash happens seemingly at random so I e
  • By what criteria was Magicka an unqualified success? The game was so buggy at release it was basically unplayable for any length of time - for some it's still entirely unplayable. I think you'd have to set the bar too low to call that a success at all.
  • Maybe this time around they won't release a game so riddled with bugs as to be almost completely unplayable, especially in multiplayer.

    The game had potential, and was pretty fun at parts, but it was so broken when it first came out that I didn't pick it up again for months, only to find then that many of the same bugs still remained.

    That being said, I think I'll pass on any future releases from Paradox Interactive until they have been thoroughly vetted.

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