Nival Interactive has released some information on their upcoming action RPG
Evil Islands, and just in case
Skies of Arcadia wasn't enough for the RPG community's collective cloud-hopping appetite, it appears as though their new game will also feature a series of floating islands. Nival might be excused for this, since Evil Islands's predecessor, Rage of Mages, also took place on a ring of airborne islands; whatever the case, the game is taking shape quickly, and the details released give a good idea of how things are going to turn out.
Evil Islands will feature three main land areas: Gipat, Suslanger, and Ingos. Each of these continents features a different setting, and different challenges for the player to overcome. Gipat, the starting point, resembles 'Europe in the summer', and though its pleasant setting is lush and green, the landscape is stocked with a wide array of orcs, goblins, and various other monsters. An interesting feature of the continent is the fact that no metal exists on it; thus, all items that appear there are made out of either stone, ivory or even animal hide. Humans are not particularly successful here, and the population is small and tough, constantly fighting to stay alive. Attempts at colonization have failed, and no major powers consider the island worth bothering with. All in all, it sounds like a fairly ideal place to start, as it lacks both advanced equipment and opposition.
Ingos, on the other hand, is a different story. Controlled by the Cania Empire, one of the game's major powers, the island is used primarily for mining, and the population is also sparse here. As it is a large land mass, the political organization is loose at best, and the lack of cities further exacerbate this situation. The only official leadership is the Elder Counsel, but it has no real power over any of the villages. The land is cold, and heavily forested with snow-covered trees. The villages are fairly independent, and natural resources form the bulk of trade.
No game with a cold, icy, barren wasteland is complete without a dry, hot, barren wasteland, and
Evil Islands does not disappoint here, throwing the island of Suslanger into the mix. This third island is part of the Hadagan empire, for what it's worth; little farming can be done, and this is achieved largely with the help of a system of dams and canals. More powerful monsters lurk here, and deep dungeons are placed about the island, suggesting this will likely be one of the later islands in the game.
Featuring a complex magic system and boasting item creation as well, Evil Islands is sure to please with its wide variety of items and the varied terrains offered by the three islands. The game, being developed for the PC, is scheduled for a release in early 2001.