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Old Oct 02, 2013, 08:33 AM   #1
Kael
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Somnium comes to iOS

After finishing Fall form Heaven I had the amazing opportunity to go to Stardock and become a professional game designer. It was a dream come true for me. One of the things we want to do at Stardock is bring fun strategy games to mobile devices. I love making grand strategy 4x games, but I also enjoy making smaller strategy games too. That's actually why I designed Somnium as a mini-game in FfH, to see if I could do it.

When we held the pitch meeting here for mobile game ideas, everyone pitched ideas and I pitched Somnium because I thought it was perfect for mobile. The team selected it as one of the games they wanted to make and it will be Stardock's first iOS game.

Through the process of developing it the team did an amazing job of making it so much better than the version in FfH. We switched the name to Dead Man's Draw (Somnium isn't a good name and is already in use). We switched the theme away from fantasy (which was perfect when it was in FfH but isn't the best for conveying what the game is about) and they added some awesome features.



When you start playing Dead Man's Draw it will play as Somnium did. But as you progress card abilities will be unlocked until eventually all cards have a special ability when they are drawn. Oracles reveal the top card of the draw pile, Cannons force your opponent to discard a card, if you bank a key and chest together then you get to bank extra cards form the discard pile, etc. If you plan well you can create combos (use the hook to play the cutless from my bank to steal a cannon and force my opponent to discard a mermaid, etc).

They also added traits which give you (or your opponents) special abilities in relation to the cards. Some opponents you face may be able to Cannon away all of your cards of one suit instead of a single card. This changes the game and forces you to adopt to whoever you are playing.

They have also added tournaments which modify the game rules. In some the cards bust on number matches instead of suit matches. In other its the first to get to a certain score, or you lose if your opponent is ever above a certain score. This also forces the player to adapt their strategy and keeps bringing in new challenges (especially when mixed with opponents with different traits).

And there are a lot of smaller enhancements. I like that it tells you how many points you would get if you collected your current bank so you don't need to do the math. I enjoy playing pass and play on my iPad with my wife while we are eating dinner.

I'm posting here for anyone who enjoyed Somnium and may want to play a better version on iOS you can check it out here at: https://itunes.apple.com/app/dead-mans-draw/id584916423

Last edited by Kael; Oct 02, 2013 at 08:38 AM.
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Old Oct 02, 2013, 09:39 AM   #2
Terkhen
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I'm glad to see more games with FFH roots

Is an Android version planned at some point?
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Old Oct 02, 2013, 01:33 PM   #3
Kael
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Originally Posted by Terkhen View Post
I'm glad to see more games with FFH roots

Is an Android version planned at some point?
We are open to releasing an Android version as well. But it isn't a specific date on any schedule. The first step was to get the game out on iOS and see how it does. Depending on that we will look at other platforms (Android being the one that makes the most sense).
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Old Oct 04, 2013, 06:19 AM   #4
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Surely getting it.

BTW: Thank you SO MUCH for FFH2!

Edit: Congratulations on your promotion!!!!!!!
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Old Oct 04, 2013, 06:50 AM   #5
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Thanks!
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Old Oct 04, 2013, 06:59 AM   #6
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 11:46 AM   #7
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If you would like a physical copy of Dead Man's Draw you can help it get made here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...isk-and-reward
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Old Oct 12, 2013, 05:30 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Kael View Post
If you would like a physical copy of Dead Man's Draw you can help it get made here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...isk-and-reward
Thanks! Backed.
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Old Oct 12, 2013, 08:56 PM   #9
fdrpi
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I preferred the fantasy theme, but I can understand the choice to change the motif. However, I was a little disappointed in the card artwork. It's so minimal and just seems low quality, especially compared to Somnium. The artwork there was so good! I just would have hoped the art would have been better.

Other than that I only hope that you could still play a version without the extra rules after you unlock them.
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Old Oct 14, 2013, 05:38 PM   #10
Estelindis
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Originally Posted by fdrpi View Post
I preferred the fantasy theme, but I can understand the choice to change the motif. However, I was a little disappointed in the card artwork. It's so minimal and just seems low quality, especially compared to Somnium. The artwork there was so good! I just would have hoped the art would have been better.

Other than that I only hope that you could still play a version without the extra rules after you unlock them.
In fairness, the artwork for Somnium looked great because it's by professional artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. It would be one thing to use her art in a non-profit mod like FfH, but I imagine that licensing it for a sold product would be a different matter and quite expensive. I don't know, just my guess.
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Old Oct 14, 2013, 06:16 PM   #11
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In fairness, the artwork for Somnium looked great because it's by professional artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. It would be one thing to use her art in a non-profit mod like FfH, but I imagine that licensing it for a sold product would be a different matter and quite expensive. I don't know, just my guess.
I didn't know that! That puts things in more perspective.
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Old Nov 11, 2013, 09:10 AM   #12
Estelindis
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It's a shame that the Kickstarter didn't quite make it. If it was rebooted, with more communication and promotion, and maybe lower international shipping, it might make it the second time round. The game Kael designed is brilliant and I don't think its design could be the reason why the project didn't quite make its funding goal.

Edit: There's been an update to the project and it turns out that a high quality PDF for home printing is going to be made available for everyone! Now to find good card stock...
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Last edited by Estelindis; Nov 11, 2013 at 03:25 PM.
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