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2nd Quarter Dev Blog, 2016 on Citadel of Sorcery
August 31, 2016

We hate to start with frustrating news, but sometimes you have to take the good with the bad. Our plans to integrate the New Hybrid LOD system with the new 3D Cube renderer and mixing them both with the foliage system has created some challenges and held us back from where we wanted to be this year. In other words, we are still trying to get those all working nicely together.

In the end, we had to go back to the foliage system (which we wrote some time ago and rewrite how it handles...more

2016 First Quarter News... New 3D Cube Renderer!
May 13, 2016

We’ve been very busy for the past few months, and forgot to post an update! OK, so here it is!

As you probably remember, we have been working on our own game engine all along. In 2015, we decided to upgrade to a Physical Renderer to improve the graphic looks of the game (see previous blog posts). We also created our new World erosion system, which generated our planet terrain in very realistic ways. As part of the upgrade to the Trident3D engine, we also created a hybrid system of...more

Fourth Quarter, 2015 (slightly delayed)
January 31, 2016

We seem to have missed our next quarter post, so better late than never, here it is. That’s going to be the theme of this briefing, ‘better late than never’. In the last Dev Briefing we noted that we were close to finishing the Publisher Demo, and that we had more ‘paths in the road’ than anticipated. Well, that was true, but there were also a lot more bumps in the road.

So let’s talk about those bumps. Of course, in software terms, a bump is called a bug. And if you will rememb...more

3rd Quarter, Dev Briefing on Citadel of Sorcery
September 17, 2015

This is our project development briefing for the Third Quarter, 2015. We have been working hard to try to get the publisher demo finished, but we’re still working on it. We’re very close though! Finishing up the major technology has turned out to have a few more paths on the road than we anticipated, but then again, some of those paths are leading to even better things!

Let’s start with the Terrain system, version 3. We finally finished up all the erosion systems, and applied them...more

2nd Quarter: Exciting times for Citadel of Sorcery
June 24, 2015

This is our July update (a few days early for once) for progress on Citadel of Sorcery. As discussed in the previous briefing, the team at A3D has been hard at work writing a new Trident3D engine, (version 2), for Citadel of Sorcery. This is ongoing, as more and more systems come online and are received by the MMO Magic, team for integration into the game.

Part of that new engine involves an upgrade to the texture quality. T3Dv2 uses a variable texture quality system that streams t...more

First Quarter Report 2015
April 29, 2015

It has been too long since we posted a development blog, but there is good reason! You’ll have to excuse us, we have been literally too busy to do anything, even sleep, other than work on the game and engine. Read on and you’ll understand why.

2015 has brought massive change to the Citadel of Sorcery project. In 2014 we kept expecting the new terrain system to be working. We would get pieces of it, and each piece looked great. New terrain detail systems, new grass systems, new t...more

End of the year briefing, 2014
December 19, 2014

It is time for our end of the year development briefing. We will begin with a review or progress and end with a forecast for next year.

This year has been a long push to get our publisher demo ready. We had hoped to get the game ready for demonstrations by August, but there were delays in the creation of our newest version of our terrain system. There were many issues, and sometimes we felt like every time we stuck one finger in a hole to stop a leak, two more leaks started.


First Quarter Briefing 2014
April 22, 2014

The first quarter of 2014 has ended, so it is time for another development update on the Citadel of Sorcery project. In the last briefing we talked about refactoring the code, and integrating systems afterwards in hopes of getting the new terrain system ready for publisher demos early in 2014. However, that is still ongoing at this stage. After the refactoring we got the terrain system up and running, but there were many issues to deal with once we actually got it working. Here are some ...more

End of the year briefing, 2013
November 28, 2013

It is past time for a development update on Citadel of Sorcery. We had hoped to give you some really good news, and delayed this briefing waiting on it, but we can’t push it off any further, so here goes.

We have tried to be as honest as possible with these briefings through the long construction of this massive title, and will continue to do so. Part of that is explaining the ups and the downs of developing a ground breaking title that uses brand new technology. In our last briefi...more

2nd Quarter and post E3 news on Citadel of Sorcery
July 14, 2013

We are into the second quarter of 2013, and it is now after E3. So let me start by talking about E3. About 2/3rd of the company attended the show, which was a lot of fun. This year we were on a scouting mission to get a list of publishers we wished to approach later this year (more on that in a minute). We were also there to check out other MMORPG games. Sadly, not all the games under development were showing, and the ones that were, well, most of them were disappointing. This is not neces...more

April 2013 Progress on Citadel of Sorcery
April 9, 2013

The first quarter of 2013 is over, and E3 is looming on the horizon. Our current focus is our new E3 playable demo, and all effort by the team is toward that goal. We have spoken with a few publishers at the last couple E3 shows, but in those cases it was more testing the water than an all out demonstration of the game with the intent to sign a deal. Even so we found some interest, but now we are getting to the point where we can show a lot of our unique game play and the new technology that ...more

2013 Begins with an update on CoS progress
January 10, 2013

It is a new year! Time for a CoS development update! Our own crowd funding has been a small shot of goodness, and the money kindly donated by our supporters has been put to work getting the game further along. Unfortunately, it is not enough to really push us to Alpha quickly, so we will stay with the original plan and get there the old fashioned way, through hard work and true grit. This is not new to the team, we have been slogging through the making of this game now for around eight year...more

Time for a progress report.
November 13, 2012

Hello, it’s been a long gap since our last Dev Blog, but here is the new update on progress. We have reached a point where we are seeking funding at various levels for Citadel of Sorcery. We have met with a publisher, got close to a deal, had the European economy tank and take our deal with it (that publisher being European). We have met with a couple other publishers and had good interest in the game. One they did not have the funds available to back such a big project, and the other wanted...more

Second Quarter Update
April 29, 2012

It is the end of April, so we better post a new report before people think we have gone on vacation or something. All is well in the development of Citadel of Sorcery! First off, we brought in two new Business Developers. One has been the CEO of both a Game Development company making MMOs, and also CEO at a publishing company for online games. He is very well connected, especially in Europe and Russia (which are his main areas for business development for CoS). The other has also been CEO o...more

A progress update for the New Year
January 29, 2012

We can begin with publishing news… we have me with a few publishers who showed early interest in CoS, but we have others scheduled, with even more to follow. We are looking for the right fit for the game. We can tell you that we have had a high level of interest in the few that have learned about the game, but due to continued negotiations, we cannot mention who, or the details of those discussions. Next up are a couple more publishers, and then GDC, followed by E3. Our goal is to get this so...more

An approaching Holidays progress report on CoS
November 22, 2011

Tis the season… to wait.

Our last couple months have been taken up with a big push to get the last major portions of R&D, engine development and Tool creation to a point where there was little risk to any publisher looking at a ground breaking game like Citadel of Sorcery. This also involved building a demo of the game play. This is because we have been talking to various publishers and arranging demonstrations for the upcoming weeks. However, we have now reached the season of holid...more

July/August 2011 Update on CoS progress
August 27, 2011

It has been a couple months since we updated the dev blog, so here is a progress report on CoS. As noted in the previous blog, we have been talking to publishers, and have some meetings coming up to show some of the technology, tools and game play. A lot of our recent work has focused on getting ready for these demonstrations.

We have been making some better art in specific areas so that publishers can get a better feel for where the graphic side of the game will head, even though th...more

July/August 2011 Update on CoS progress
August 27, 2011

It has been a couple months since we updated the dev blog, so here is a progress report on CoS. As noted in the previous blog, we have been talking to publishers, and have some meetings coming up to show some of the technology, tools and game play. A lot of our recent work has focused on getting ready for these demonstrations.

We have been making some better art in specific areas so that publishers can get a better feel for where the graphic side of the game will head, even though th...more

Post E3 2011 update and CoS news
June 15, 2011

Well, E3 has come and gone, and as far as MMO Magic is concerned it was a big success. We met with numerous publishers and found a high rate of interest in the game. We have several follow up meetings scheduled where we will see about settling down with one of these publishers. Unfortunately, due to NDAs and other confidentialities, we cannot really get into who and where on these quite yet.

All I can tell you at this point was that almost every publisher we met showed some level of i...more

We promised new screenshots, here are a few.
April 21, 2011

We promised more screen shots of Citadel of Sorcery around E3 this year, and though we will still be posting some then, we thought we would go ahead and put up a few ahead of time. We held back the new terrain shots for E3 though ;) We also removed all the very old shots we put up a long time ago, they were outdated. Go to the CoS web site (there is a link in the Game section on this site), then go to the Screen shots page. There is a 'full screen' mode, just click the little white icon ...more

www.citadelofsorcery.com website adds public Forum
April 8, 2011

As of yesterday, we finally opened up the public forums for Citadel of Sorcery at the www.citadelofsorcery.com website. Fans have been asking us to do this for awhile, but we wanted to wait until we were a bit further along in the development. That time has come. Stop by and lurk, or drop a few posts....more

Getting prepared for E3 2011
March 16, 2011

It is almost that time again… E3. And like many game companies, the MMO Magic team is making a big push to get ready for the most important show in the game industry. This year we are setting up meetings with several publishers at E3 to give them a look at Citadel of Sorcery. As you can imagine, in order to be ready for that we are pushing many of the game elements forward to specific goals by June.

The new Terrain system has seen a lot of progress in the past few months, and is sha...more

Happy Holiday fourth quarter update
December 18, 2010

Well, it is December (in case you had not noticed) which is nearing the end of 2010. Our goals for this year were to have the new Terrain system functional to the level where the planet was created, continents formed, erosion (gravity, wind and water over time) completed, biomes generated, characters walking on the new terrain and the forest biome detailed. We have achieved these goals with the exception of the characters walking and forest detailed, but we still have a couple of weeks, so we ...more

Third Quarter update on the game development
September 24, 2010

The team continues to expand as the game gets further along the development cycle. In the past three weeks we have brought in two additional artists and a new programmer.

In Art we are busy with several areas: our concept artists are working on some of the new monster races as well as architectural styles for things like the Imperial outposts. In modeling we are currently concentrating on some final art for a human village, making a full set of various structures in anticipation o...more

Work on the game continues to progress
August 2, 2010

Just a short update this time.

The CoS team continues to grow, we have added several new people to the team over the past couple months including an additional programmer, two new artists and two new level designers and two new interns (one Writer, one Composer).

In programming progress also continues on the new terrain system, and is coming in leaps and bounds. The planet wide continents are up and we got a chance to take a look at the average rain fall maps, sunlight maps (...more

Massive Multiplayer Reflected Worlds
June 30, 2010

In a recent design meeting the decision was finally made to let players experience the Reflected Worlds in a fully massive multiplayer environment. This has been something we have been kicking around for awhile in various ways, but the decision was finally made to include it. This is a fundamental change to the game and so worth mentioning here.

First and most importantly, we are taking nothing away from what we already planned in the game play, all that continues as planned. What we...more

Memorial Weekend Update
May 28, 2010

Happy Memorial Day weekend! Sounds like a good time for some development news on Citadel of Sorcery.

Our Art Department has been busy with upgrading the in game User Interface art. Our goal is to add this new art to the game within the next month. In addition our modelers have been building castles, lots of castles, big castles, massive fortresses and tall fantasy castles. With a world as massive as CoS we wanted to make sure that the castles were equally impressive. I know you wou...more

New engine build and other progress this quarter.
April 6, 2010

We have had a major new build of the T3D engine completed this quarter. This build improves the memory management as well as many other areas of the game. We got a 30% increase in performance, faster loads, and MANY bug fixes. Of course, it came with its own set of new bugs, but those were swiftly squashed and the build is now fully functional. This will help the development team to speed up work in many ways as they are not waiting as long for loads and the new build process goes from minut...more

Picking up steam in February
February 28, 2010

Programming has really picked up the pace recently and we are seeing weekly updates on the Enact tool. They are swiftly clearing up various bugs and adding new features. Right now we are concentrating on the A.I. net tool. This includes improvements on adjusting the net. All the mass connections were causing some slow ups, so they are redoing the data structure and other elements to keep our level designing team moving at a fast pace. But in addition to that we have also seen some prelimina...more

MMO Magic Team is growing, progress continues
January 27, 2010

MMO Magic Inc. is going through another growth spurt as the Citadel of Sorcery project continues to roll. Recently we have added nine new people to the team: 4 artists, 1 Level Designer, 3 Quest Writers and 1 programmer.

There is a lot of work going on in the design team as they write up all the personalities and lives of the NPCs that inhabit our world. This is no simple task as each has their job, hobbies, friends, family, enemies, daily routines, occasional oddities and events,...more

Happy Hallogivmaseve, or just happy holidays
November 23, 2009

Tis the season to be jolly and all that stuff. We thought we would add a mid holiday update on our Citadel of Sorcery MMO game project. We have been spending a lot of time on the playable character races lately. As promised, we have started to release information on one of the six races each month (and we are due to release information on the second race sometime next week). This is not just a matter of what we want to tell you, there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes as we cont...more

Dealing with wandering monsters
October 19, 2009

We've spent a lot of time on making some design changes recently. We want a living world where monsters don't pop back into existence after being killed. On top of that we don't want players forced into a typical level grinding situation where they stand around killing the same things over and over. To keep this from happening we have been working on the wilderness monster system. This includes how monsters inhabit these lands.

To make the game even better we have recently redesign...more

Challenges and Progress in July and August
August 25, 2009

The last two months have seen progress in some areas and delays in others. We're still waiting on the latest build of the Trident3D engine. There have been additional delays due to some serious bugs and because of some last minute design changes. The part that is costing the most time is the Event Tool, which is an insanely complex tool. However, it will be worth the wait as it will allow us to breath an amazing amount of life into the world.

This is one of the primary tools fo...more

New team members and E3
June 24, 2009

The MMO Magic team is growing! We've recently added two new people to the Quest Writing staff. Our game takes a very special type of writer and we are constantly looking and testing people to find those capable and foolish enough to want to take on this difficult task. Writing just one of our quests is like attempting to write a detailed outline of an epic fantasy novel, and that story changes every time you read the darn thing. It takes the average Quest Writer more than a month to write j...more

A May update on game progress
May 20, 2009

Time for a small update (to keep the wolves at bay). Work progresses in all departments.

Programming has been handling some issues with Enact, mostly server communication and a few other areas. The fact that Enact works in the live game world has made for some interesting bugs. They will soon be moving onto the world terrain creator (the world is currently using older style hand created terrain pieces, but this is placeholder).

Art continues to add structures and NPCs....more

April progress
April 20, 2009

As stated in the previous post, we're in a long development cycle right now. However, here is a little information on what is happening on CoS.

1) The new client update system is working well now. We're going to be adding the 'news' system to it in the near future. This is a daily newspaper that comes out telling players what is happening in the game world today, and what transpired yesterday. What towns fell, or were liberated. What players did, what guilds were formed, what new...more

March note
March 13, 2009

A short update:

Not a lot of 'new' things to report, just a lot of work done on furthering existing elements such as:

Final touches on Enact Phase 1 (in game level building tool).

Testing and tweaks on the new game client update system.

More NPC character development.

Lots of design work on player Abilities.

100s of bug fixes to existing elements in game.

Level building continues to add dynamic objects.

New models pouring i...more

February interim update
February 13, 2009

Well, it's Friday the 13th, but we're not superstitious. We were holding out on the next update for Enact Phase 1 to be finished, however, there have been some unavoidable delays in finishing the tool. Of course, other work has been done in the meantime, so we decided to go ahead and post a short 'interim' update report. So here goes...

Recently the art department has been working on several areas of the game. The main screen user interface final art has been started, working off t...more

Game development update
December 14, 2008

OK, time for an update on the progress of Citadel of Sorcery. First though, a happy holidays to you, we hope you enjoy the season. Now,as to what we have been up to at MMO Magic, Inc.

It has been a busy time at MMO Magic, lots of work getting done, lots of progress on the game and engine. Let's start there, with technology.

We have a new game editor. It has been revamped and we had to extract out the old systems for animation and add in the new. Artists can now take their w...more

Enact's new Story Tool
October 26, 2008

As part of the game building tool, Enact: Phase 2, we have reworked the Story Building portion of the tool to handle recent changes to the Quest system.

The objective of Enact has always been to put powerful tools capable of making almost any quest concept into the game without requiring programming skills. Enact is a series of different tools with a GUI interface that runs inside the game for live editing of Quests and other aspects of the world.

In writing more quests for t...more

September progress report
September 23, 2008

We have had additional progress on our new animation system for NPCs. This was a complex crossover from our previous placeholder system to the final animation system. It involved changing which 3D package we use to animate, changing model and animation formats to Collada, tweaking our animation pipeline to work with these, and programming our own code to read these formats. This has been a long crossover Work is still going on to fix various bugs in this new system, but we anticipate being f...more

Progress report for August
August 12, 2008

We’re waiting on the latest update on the Trident3D engine. While we wait, we have been working on many other areas, including refining the game design. Design changes have gone into many areas, including monster races, world history, how horses work, bargaining with evil, death penalties, character abilities and more.

One area of the game design that we changed has a large impact on the game world. This involved the lands under Citadel control in the war against Morphael. We deci...more

Update on game building progress
June 25, 2008

We haven't posted a news article here recently, so we thought we would at least add an update on progress.

1. There have been some delays in the programming of the tool set for building the A.I. net for the NPCs of the world. We got side tracked with some other problems, but work will be back on track this week. We're very excited about this portion of the game building tool. Once Phase 1 is complete we can build our A.I. nets in the world and then toss in NPCs who will immedi...more

Internship program started
April 17, 2008

We have finally started our internship program. This program serves two purposes; we get some talented (but usually inexperienced) help in some areas of the game creation. More importantly, we help these hardworking souls to gain some experience, insight and game credits for working at a game company on an actual title.

We've recently started six Interns, but are still looking for a few more. We're particularly interested in artists as this is the area currently needing the mos...more

Quest system design revamped
April 17, 2008

As we tested out Quest designs we found two things were true, our quest were far more involved and interesting than other MMO games we'd played, and they still didn't meet our original design goals.

So we gathered some of our design team and had a multi-day intensive redesign of the entire system. I'm happy to report that our original goals are now met with the new changes to the system. We didn't get rid of anything we had before, we just expanded the system to allow far more pla...more

Art Department expanding
February 26, 2008

The Citadel of Sorcery development team is pleased to welcome four new artists. One is an accomplished animation pipeline specialist, another is an experienced Art Director we've worked with on past projects, the third a modeler new to us, but an accomplished artist and the fourth a Concept Artist that we've worked with on many shipped titles in the past.

We're still looking for even more artists to join this amazing project. Please contact us if you want to become part of the...more

Menu Tools finished
January 28, 2008

We have added the menu tool to the Trident3D engine and Enact Editing tool. The tool can now modify itself as well as create the menus and logic for the in game User Interface screens. Since Enact is actually inside a special development copy of Citadel of Sorcery this means that all the previously created art for the game menu system will soon start to show up in the game for the first time....more

Happy Holidays from our team.
December 25, 2007

The entire Citadel of Sorcery team wishes you all a Happy Holidays!

BTW: We're still looking for other talented artists who want to get in early on this new and unique game. So if you want to be part of an exciting development team, drop us a line....more

New build of the Trident 3D engine completed.
December 9, 2007

Today our engineering staff completed a new build, version of the Trident 3D engine.

This build of the Trident 3D engine addressed several bugs and issues to do with the physics collision with dynamic objects, as well as rendering problems. It also fixed the instanced Object appearance error, as well as building interior malfunctions, and added a static geometry cache to stop memory fragmentation with an overflow buffer system.

In short, rendering...more

Tier 1 new layout complete
November 9, 2007

Today we finished the new layout of Tier 1 of the Citadel. The hub and spoke design worked out well and should be an asset for players in understanding where they are in this large city....more

Quest system design improved
October 11, 2007

We have completed several meetings where we addressed issues we'd discovered in the quest system. In attempting to give players interesting quests that tie into and are influenced by their past and that work with their personal story, we were running into several problems when it came to players grouping up for these adventures and then having the leader of the quest leave during the adventure.

We have now solved the issue and believe we have a quest system that will handle bot...more

New design for Tier 1 layout
September 22, 2007

Now that Tier 1 is built, after wandering round the streets and buildings of the city we decided that such a complex city needed a better layout, so that players could easily find what they were looking for without constantly needing a map.

In order to accomplish this we decided to change a good portion of the Tier 1 city layout. Now you will enter through the main gates, go through a grand entry park and go straight into the inner city. The inner city is a very open and large...more

Mouse control improved
September 14, 2007

We decided to improve the standard system for character control. No, don't panic. We are not taking anything you are used to away, only adding additional controls that you may choose to use. We believe these controls improve the standard control system by allowing a player to walk, run, step back, trot back, turn left and right, look up and down and jump... all from the mouse only.

No longer must you keep your other hand on the ASDW and space bar for these controls. Just o...more

Memory fragmentation bug eats other systems.
July 10, 2007

Well, it didn't really eat them, but it affected many other system. The way our game streams textures and geometry into and out of the game so that players do not have to wait for loads is tied into this memory fragmentation fix.

We have had to do some serious re-writes of the Trident3D engine to accommodate the fixes needed to make the game work with the LOD code, Streaming code and memory management code. This has taken several months, but is finally nearly finished. Becaus...more

Tier 1 layout version 1 complete.
June 4, 2007

Tier 1 is built. That is to say, all Districts are filled in with their buildings and there are no holes in the world with nothing there. 80 percent of the interiors are all built as well, so you can go inside most of the buildings. The rest of the structures will either be locked up at the door, or the interior completed soon....more

Memory fragmentation bug
May 10, 2007

Objects were disappearing in the world. We tracked it down to the texture streaming system. As we stream textures into and out of the video card the memory is getting fragmented so that a larger set of textures cannot find room to be loaded.

In order to fix this issue we have to write video 'chunk' system to guarantee that memory does not get fragmented in the future. Separate systems were needed for dynamic and static geometry. We're getting started on that code now....more

New character models with mocap animation
April 26, 2007

We've decided to go with motion capture for the character animation. We tried hand animation, but the motion capture adds far more realism to the movement of the characters. We have 70% of the motion capture data ready now, and several characters, all human so far....more

Cube map lighting mixed with real time lighting.
April 20, 2007

Now we can add almost any number of lights to a scene without slowing down the frame rate of the game significantly. The Trident3D engine mixes real time lighting with cube map lighting to get the effect of thousands of real lights in the scene and visible at any given moment. This allows our game to have a amazing night scenes where you look out across the a city and see hundreds if not thousands of lights....more

Dynamic Object lights
March 14, 2007

Dynamic objects can now contain light, have emissive textures and cast shadows from the light. For example, if I build a lantern, place a candle inside, and put a light within the lantern, the candle will glow, the glass will glow as the light passes through. The frame and supports around the lantern will cast shadows as they block the light from within. The light picks up the tint from the glass, which colors the light that passes through. The light is in real time, so if the lantern is car...more

User interface art has been created
March 10, 2007

Based on the Design Guide, the User Interface screen art has been completed for the main view, and all major menus: Inventory,Character, Stats, Potions, Trades, Abilities Codex. ...more

Streaming improved.
March 4, 2007

The Trident3d engine uses streaming technology to add new models and textures into the world in real time rather than make players wait on load screens. In other words, when you are in the game wandering round the Citadel or out in a Reflected world on an adventure, you will NEVER be stopped to load. Everything is constantly streaming into your video card as you move around the world, so nothing gets between you and constant fun. No loads when entering new buildings, caves, castles, dungeons,...more

Dynamic objects system added
February 25, 2007

The Trident3D engine has the dynamic objects system now. This allows us to place all the little items of high detail into the world. These are objects that only show when you are close enough to them, but they are higher detailed objects than static geometry. ...more

Windows and door portal system added.
January 24, 2007

In CoS when you walk into any building we do not load a separate place like most other games. All of our interiors are actually inside the building you see, like a real building. This means you never have to wait for separate loads when entering or exiting a building. In addition, it means that all the windows and doors actually are windows and doors. You can walk to a window, look out through the glass and see the outside world. Light from the outside world comes in through the real window...more

Nvidia D3d bug fixed
January 8, 2007

It took a while, but we wrote all the code necessary so that we will no longer have the issues caused by the Nvidia / D3D incompatibility issue....more

Nvidia D3D bug
September 14, 2006

Well, we developed a BAD crash bug in the program. It took the programming staff several months to narrow it down to the real problem. After going through several of our own systems, writing new memory management, and other fixes, we finally discovered the real problem. There is a bug in the Nvidia drivers that doesn't work properly with D3D 9. We've contacted Nvidia about this issue, but gotten zero response. We looked at other released games, and they crash with this bug as well. The pub...more

Texture LOD system implimented
May 16, 2006

The Trident3D engine now supports texture Level of Detail changing based on distance. The world automatically adjusts the resolution of textures on the fly so that no matter how much video ram a player's card has, and how much texture is needed on screen, the game can always render the scene. This brings the game's target of running on a 128 meg video card possible....more

Shadow LOD system with self shadowing
May 4, 2006

We've added improvements the level of detail system to include real time shadows LODs. In addition, objects can now case self shadowing. In other words, if the shadow cast by the object fall somewhere onto the same object the shadows is also cast on the object....more

Adding character races to the design
February 5, 2006

We are considering five races plus human for the players to choose from in the game. We decided to create our own races rather than go with over used standards from the 'tolkien' universe. At this time we have ten races, but we're going to try to reduce that down to six total. ...more

Static geo LOD system
December 10, 2005

To allow us to create a city of massive complexity, it was necessary to create an LOD system to help the game handle the poly counts without grinding to a halt. We decided on a system that welds the ground and all the buildings and other large objects into one giant mesh. At that point we can alter the poly density on the fly so that as object move away or get closer they morph through various complexities of polygons, less with distance, more as you get closer. This system is being added to ...more

Level Building Tool designed
November 27, 2005

The level building tool design is at version 1.0. This tool allows the Level Builder unprecedented control of the world. The idea was to put programming level control into the hands of a level builder, yet they don't have to know any programming. Level Builders can use this tool to create almost unlimited quality quests for the game, make NPCs and Monster behaviors and varying intelligence. They can program NPCs lives so that they live in the world rather than stand around some place. This ...more

NPC subject system
November 24, 2005

We decided to go with an NPC subject system rather than a tree system for PC to NPC communication. With our greater concentration on engaging quests, how you communicate with NPCs is important. With the subject system we're proposing players will not have to go back through the conversation tree several times to make sure they got all the information. Each subject you pick plays all the information about that subject, no branching. They will be written so that players feel it is a conversati...more

Tier 1 divided into sections
November 16, 2005

We've decided to sub divide Tier 1 into sections of city. This is due to how the Trident3d editor will handle the construction of the city. With 10s of millions of polygons planned in the city, it will be difficult for any tool to handle the entire city at one time. The game engine can handle it because of LOD systems, where the editor has to render every poly all the time. So we're keeping each section of the city to about 500,000 polygons of static geometry.

This is also led to the ...more

Skill based Abilities system proposed
November 8, 2005

We have an character ability system roughed out. The system is Skill Based. Players will adventure for tomes of knowledge. When they go up levels they gain study points which they can apply to any Ability books they own (representing time studied). This way the players can gain any ability they wish for their player, by seeking the tome, and then study it as much as they want to improve the ability. In addition, practicing the ability (using it) will also advance their skill in that ability...more

Test City abandoned, Tier 1 started.
October 19, 2005

The Test City has done all it can do for us. The design is far enough along now for us to start working on Tier 1 of the real Citadel.

Art is starting work on the Tier 1 buildings. Much of the terrain for the city is placeholder, though some of the buildings are now real game assets. The city will be expanded and improved over the next two years of development....more

Point lights added
August 3, 2005

The Trident 3D engine had a point light system added today. This is an early system allowing just some simple point lighting around the world, however, it is the beginning of what will be come a very robust lighting system yet to come. Shadows are cast appropriately by the point lights....more

Day Night cycle added
July 29, 2005

The first changing lighting in the world was added today. There is now a sun and moon, both casting their appropriate light and moving across the sky in a day/night cycle. Lighting changes with appropriate color shift depending on where the sun is located. It's a very realistic looking sun and moon light system....more

Concept story expanded
May 8, 2005

Today we started work on the Epic Story. We've decided that the game will feature a unique story written specially for the game. This decision was not taken lightly. There are good reasons why games are often based on existing licenses, for example, a famous fantasy book series. However, while this helps the sales of the game initially, it can hurt the game play in the long run.

By writing a unique story for the game itself, we believe we can make a world and epic story that h...more

Real time shadows added to Trident3D
May 8, 2005

Real time shadows were added today to the Trident3D engine. These shadows use soft edges and work on all static geometry. Our shadow system is designed to push the envelope compared to any MMORPG so far. Shadows, though they don't sound exciting, add the ambience to a scene that can make or break the look and feel of a world....more

Game Design Guide started
May 4, 2005

Up until this point the game design was simply notes from meetings and other discussions. However, it is now time to get started on the actual Game Design document so that everyone is on the same page and because a game of this size can take a long time to design correctly.

In fact, most developers do not spend enough time on the initial design of the game. This leads to poor designs and missing deadlines.

In order to make CoS the best game possible, we have dec...more

Networked Test City Online
April 23, 2005

Due to the use of the Trident3D engine, it didn't take long before we were able to put up a test city online. This allowed us to test some network code with ten players in a small quickly built city of placeholder art. Initial tests were positive. We noticed some surging when watching one of the other players running along side your character and will be adding a smoothing system to handle this visual issue....more

Scene Editor version 1.0 ready
April 2, 2005

Today the programmers finished up the first version of the scene Editor. This will allow level builders to start placing models into a test world. ...more

Citadel Tier advancement Concept
March 25, 2005

In order to deliver the Epic Story portion of the game, yet allow new players to come along later, we've decided to divide the Citadel into a spiral set of Tiers. You start at the lowest Tier at the base of the spiral mountain. As you progress your personal story far enough you will gain opportunities to earn your way to the next Tier of the Citadel.

This advancement in Tiers is then tied to the delivery of the next section of the Epic storyline. Thus, you must ascend through...more

Citadel Tier advancement Concept
March 25, 2005

In order to deliver the Epic Story portion of the game, yet allow new players to come along later, we've decided to divide the Citadel into a spiral set of Tiers. You start at the lowest Tier at the base of the spiral mountain. As you progress your personal story far enough you will gain opportunities to earn your way to the next Tier of the Citadel.

This advancement in Tiers is then tied to the delivery of the next section of the Epic storyline. Thus, you must ascend through ...more

Citadel of Sorcery named
March 14, 2005

After looking at various name proposals, today we settled on the game title Citadel of Sorcery. We liked the three letter acronym CoS, as well as the shortened 'Citadel'. It also tied in nicely with our concept of a central large city that is a massive multiplayer area, called the 'Citadel'. Sorcery in the title lets players know that this is a fantasy motif game....more

Quest system concept
February 15, 2005

Looking at current MMORPG games we soon realized that game quests were the area where the most improvement is available. Quests in typical and current MMOs are, for the most part, boring. We call them 'grocery list' quests. A quest in a current MMORPG might be, "Bring me 32 thigh bones from an Orc". Or, they might be, "Take this apple to Bob the Inn Keeper". Again, 'fetch me this or deliver me that' quests.

We have decided that in our MMO you will be the main character in y...more

Modifications to the Trident3D engine begin
January 16, 2005

Now that we have decided to create an MMORPG for our next project, our first order of business was to make a plan on how to create our as yet un-named MMORPG. Should we purchase an existing engine for the game, or build our own from scratch? After looking at what was available, and what we needed for a cutting edge game, we quickly realized we would need a custom engine. In the end we went with both ideas. We licensed an existing engine that allowed us to modify the source code and customize ...more

MMORPG core team formed.
January 15, 2005

It is time to decide on our next project. We had several design concepts presented. Of these possibilities we choose to develop an MMORPG idea that has some unique design elements.

The decision to go with the MMORPG concept was based on the fact that MMORPGs were popular, but that no other company had as yet created one that we felt was exciting and well designed for he player. This left us room to improve on what players had experienced in this genre. We also picked this pro...more