Fictorum is what I have called a “mage-’em-up” where you run around casting spells, collecting items and killing baddies just like in any RPG. So you would expect this game by Scraping Bottom Games (best name ever by the way) to be fairly standard in how the mechanics are, well you’d be wrong and it’s fantastic for a WIP alpha.
Fictorum lets you “shape” magic
So one of the mechanics that makes Fictorum unique is its’ “spell shaping”, where you can alter how your spell casts dynamically in the heat of battle. Need a massive ball of fire to take out a large warband nearly half a mile away, no problem! Do you need to pierce through a conga line of baddies with a single bolt of lightning, no problem!
The ability to mould your spells at your whim is pretty handy, and there are more to unlock in-game with even further shaping abilities. I have yet to get that far as I keep being killed and with the game being perma-death and all, well it makes it a little difficult to get far if you take a kicking.
That being said I love the combat and even at this early state Fictorum is a pretty good-looking game, this primarily being down to the Unreal Engine 4 being fantastic and it runs very well on my machine without having to turn anything down, though there is a known bug with fullscreen mode which the devs are trying to hunt down and eradicate. Just have the game set to fullscreen borderless and you’ll be throwing fireballs in no time.
Travelling in the Fictorum world
Moving around the Fictorum world is done via small islands that have been proceduraly generated onto a large map. To progress to the next area all you need do is get from one side to the other while a large red semi-circle is constantly on your tail, threatening you with bigger, harder and nastier enemies to fight. Sound familiar? It should because the team at Scraping Bottom Games plucked the idea for their progression straight from FTL: Faster Than Light, it’s a bloody great idea to throw it into a fantasy rpg setting and I’ve not come across any other game that’s done this with this genre yet!
In the screenshot above the islands with green dots above signal areas where you can “rest” where you can gain hp and shop for items, runes and spells just like in FTL, where you can fly to the shop to buy parts and heal your ship. I was very happy to see this mechanic and they even took the quest progression and brought that in too, letting you make decisions at each stop and sometimes giving you a choice of what you would like to do next, this would at times reward you and other times…well you just go to battle and kick some arse!
As I’ve made you aware I have played a number of hours of Fictorum so for your viewing pleasure and in doing so I have recorded a video showcase to accompany this blog post, you can view this below!
So by the time you get down here you may be thinking, “how do I help support this amazing project!?” well don’t worry I’ve got that covered. Scraping Bottom Games have as of today taken Fictorum to kickstarter to help fund the remainder fo the game, you can find the link to that as well as their other sites and social pages below this very paragraph.