My short bio: We are the Co-Founders of Larkon Studio, an innovative fresh indie company. We are working on CivCraft - Legends of Ellaria for the past 3 years.

CivCraft is a Sandbox Open World RPG,RTS,FPS game, where you can go on adventures, rule a kingdom and fight epic battles.

My Proof: Our Website(link to the IAMA down scroll to "News" section)

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Comments: 626 • Responses: 38  • Date: 

RogueX7117 karma

Are you aware of the very popular /r/civcraft, a minecraft server?

ArikHelman3 karma

No, but we are not affiliated with the mod for CivCraft in any way

Shadedjon42 karma

Why did you choose the name Civcraft.

Seeing as you're still developing the game, is there any chance you will change the name to prevent confusion?

ArikHelman6 karma

No, we have invested in that name and can't change it. There's no actual confusion since we are different genres with different concept and graphics

Hebil19 karma

What makes CivCraft stand out more when compared to other sandbox games?

ArikHelman8 karma

CivCraft is a Sandbox RPG with both first person and real time strategy. You can choose to go on adventures or to rule a kingdom, and switch between the FPS and RTS mode whenever you want.

This is something you don't see in any game, especially not a sandbox game. Furthermore, the buildings that you build are populated by civilians, which can talk to you, give you quests and have a personality.

Knight_of_Agatha8 karma

check out natural selection 2, check out rust, etc. Learn from their mistakes and see how they handle things to get some inspiration and maybe help you forward I have about 700 hours on rust and tend to get really into these type of things, if you are looking for a professional tester to work side by side with you let me know.

Knight_of_Agatha8 karma

uhh also check out mount and blade war band, there are mods that make it a lot better, great information to be gleaned for how your game should run, Run a kingdom like war band, fight like chivalry and rust, build like rust. this has the potential to be one of the best games ever made

ArikHelman3 karma

Thanks, we will.

I did play Mount & Blade and liked it a lot. I thought back then "how awesome it would be to increase the troop size and have an RTS menu"

Hebil6 karma

Seems interesting; good luck at launch. :D

ArikHelman2 karma


Aerda_11 karma

Im sorry youre being downvoted so much (assuming because of the whole civcraft minecraft server name fiasco), I used to be part of the minecraft civcraft community, so im sorry if it seems like ALL of us are jerks, that isn't the case :P

Heres my question:

Where do you see yourself and/or this game in 5 years time?

ArikHelman5 karma

We are hoping to have a unique game with modding and multiplayer support, as well as the best graphics possible.

Ghostwalker332211 karma

can you tell me how multiplayer is going to work? Is it going to be MMO sized server, or smaller 24 player servers? Will everyone be in the same world?

ArikHelman5 karma

multiplayer will have several types, but the main one will be an open world free play, were each player receives his terrain and can build his kingdom there. Depending on server rules, you can invade another kingdom and create an empire. You can also visit other player's kingdoms and move freely through their lands, just as long as you don't have an army at your back. For large servers, some players will be kingdom-less and will work to establish their reputation.

Both in single player and multiplayer, you will have several factions to chose from, Each with their own abilities.

The multiplayer server will be smaller (24 player or so), not MMO sized

imnotwillferrell8 karma

who would win in an 80s street fight between robocop and blackula mr t (mr t was bitten by a vampire and became a blackula)?

ArikHelman3 karma

I would bet on Robocop. has no blood for a vampire to suck

leodavinci-nl6 karma

kickstarters claims that 2% of the projectbudget will be spend on beer and pizza, what is your favorite beer and does the game offer minigames to make your own beer or pizza?

ArikHelman3 karma

Nice question :-)

In general, we like Tuborg, but we're not really going to spend 2% on pizza and beer. It's a programmer's joke, from those times when we've stayed up late

Zwizzor6 karma

Why does the second picture of the front page of your website says FPS and shows a third person view?

ArikHelman3 karma

Because it's both first person and third person. Like in Skyrim, you can switch between them whenever you want. Since first person is the most known, we wrote first person instead of "First / Third person"

Kevin-Can5 karma

Any plans to make it modifiable? with also steam workshop?

ArikHelman3 karma


Yes, that's our main goal, but since we're still in Early Access, we're relying on the Kickstarter's Stretch goals to add modding to the early versions

bofstein5 karma

The games I've played previously that have attempted this type of combination (e.g., Spore) tend to have a lower quality of each aspect; i.e., the RTS part of the game is not nearly as good as a standalone RTS, etc. What do you plan to do differently than other attempted combination games to make each part as good as a typical, high-quality game of each type?

ArikHelman4 karma

We're focusing on the first person and adventure elements of CivCraft, and are adding the RTS elements as a way to do things that you can't do in first person. This means that we're not compromising on the depth, graphics and gameplay of CivCraft when it comes to first person

Sturmir3 karma

This game seems to have a lot of aspects of Ultima Online in it's inherent design (a living breathing world, which eventually didn't pan out as much as it was.)

How much are you putting into the world to make it evolve and change? Will animals populate and depopulate dependent on use? How will resources be used in this game and gathered? Miners and RTS elements autogathered? Will that be micromanaged? Will resources deplete over time? Will people eat food and drink water to survive? Too many questions! xD Good Luck with your game, already backed ya and will see how money looks next month to throw even moar!

ArikHelman2 karma

The secret to it is that you can only command soldiers. The citizen in your kingdom has their own job and you cannot command them to move, guard, or do anything for that matter. This means that you don't have to do Micromanage, but instead set the percentage of the worker/civilian/farmers/soldiers/scouts.

The areas have their own alignment system, which affects what creatures are populating them, what quests are related to these areas, and how dangerous it is to build a settlement or go on adventures in that area.

Resources are gathered by building mines, farms, lumber mills or by finding them in dungeons. One of these resources is RiftStone, a very rare resource that is usually found after completing quests.

Thanks for your support!

leodavinci-nl2 karma

what kind of games did Lisa, Adrian and Arik play the last few years? What was the best and worst game... and how did it influence the new kickstarter Campaign? ... is Lisa a American television writer ?

ArikHelman2 karma

Skyrim, Total War series, Mount & Blade, Fallout, Homeworld Series, Never Winter Nights, Far Cry 3, Elder Scrolls - Oblivion, Counter Strike, Spore, War Games Series (up to Red Dragon), Left 4 Dead, Operation Flashpoint, Arma Series, Sanctum 2, Braid, Tomb Raider, KSP, Minecraft, Dishonored, GTA Series, Saint Row Series, Supreme Commander, Crysis....

Well it's actually a really long list. The best game was Skyrim, Far Cry 3 and War Games Red Dragon, since we've spent the most hours.

The worst was Duke Nukem Forever...

leodavinci-nl3 karma

and Lisa as executive producer... background as american TV writer or something else? "google says no" when I try to find history with gaming :)

ArikHelman3 karma

Lisa is not a TV producer at Larkon Studio. She is the business and administrative end of Larkon Studio while we are the game designers and partners.

suzyqzy72 karma

So, have you been working on CivCraft since day one then? And if you have, what was the inspiration for CivCraft? It is a pretty cool idea to combine all those elements into one game.

ArikHelman3 karma

The inspiration came from playing video games from the age of 15 or so. I can't say that I didn't take inspiration from NWN, Skyrim, Total War Series and other games, but the idea came from designing a strong strategy game that will connect perfectly to a first person game.

iticklemyballs2 karma

What program would you recommend for beginner developers? I'm currently working on Unity 5 but is there anything else you would recommend?

ArikHelman8 karma

Unity 5 is very flexible and powerful, and supports cross platform. It also supports C# and JavaScript, which are an excellent choice for any developers.

I would recommend to stick to unity 5. It has, by my opinion, an "edge" over CryEngine or Unreal Engine:

  • It has a known language that you can use for other projects/engines
  • It has more code packages (logic, AI, utilities,etc.) than other engines, by my opinion
  • It's very flexible and easy to use. again, by my opinion.

But the reality is, that you should chose the game engine according to what you are developing. Some engines are better for block games, some are excellent for graphics, and it really depends on your project

Asarn2 karma

Have you think about a system of god or demon in the game?

ArikHelman1 karma

Since CivCraft is also an RTS, with armies and cities, we've allowed ourselves to really raise the bar on what a true warrior/ranger/mage can do. On higher levels, a mage can destroy an entire battalion with a single spell, or shield an entire part of a city from attacks.

But this is the closer that a player or an NPC will get to a god/demon, except for some of the lore characters you'll meet

leodavinci-nl1 karma

in some RPG games the main character builds an emotional relationship with one or multiple NPC's (mass effect 3 for example). In such a way that the player feels more connected with the events in the main story line (and emotions based on a negative or positve changes within that story line). As a player you will feel more connected with the game. Does the game over this kind of depth with a NPC (hero or sidekick)? I can imagine it will be very hard to incorporate such a thing cause you are already doing a great job in mixing RTS/RPG/etc.

ArikHelman2 karma

Sure, we did. The main part of CivCraft is the RPG, and there are heroes and vital NPC's that follow you and are part of the main story. The important ones (and most of the heroes) will only get wounded in an RTS or Quest mission, or will be captured and there will be a side quest to rescue them.

The RTS part is not a problem to the depth of the NPC's, unless your kingdom is entirely overrun

AzzaBRedditories1 karma

When do you do you hope to get an alpha release of the game for the kickstarter backers?:)

ArikHelman4 karma

The early access will be available several weeks after the campaign. It will start with small parts of CivCraft, and as we polish more parts, they will be available as a download or an update.

We can't tell when the Alpha release will be available. That depends on our Kickstarter campaign, but we expect players to receive an FPS/RTS game very soon after the campaign

leodavinci-nl1 karma

Could you share you happiest moment developing this game (what/who caused it) and the most frustrated moment ... what have you learned by those? ... sorry for these life-changing questions, I found a cold bottle of Tuborg :)

ArikHelman0 karma


The happiest moment in developing the game was when we stitched the FPS and RTS together.

There where people working on the FPS while other people where working on the RTS, and after months of development we combined them into the same engine. That was a happy moment because not only did it work but because we got stuck on playing CivCraft. It was a new gameplay that we never really played before

The most frustrating moment, well, there are always plenty of those in coding :-)

IDontBeatGames1 karma

Is there going to be any goal set on updating the graphics later on as the game develops?

ArikHelman3 karma

Yes, we are planning to focus on graphics update, as well as tweaks to items and game objects. How soon we will update the graphics depends on our Immersion (100K) streatch goal

biophil1 karma

Will early access have MP mode? Edit: And just to be sure, EA is what you will have access to if you donate $20?

ArikHelman2 karma

Yes, the early access is available on the 20$ tier.

The MP mode is planned to be included in one of the EA updates, but it's availability and the time that it will be included depends on our Rift (500K) streatch goal

leodavinci-nl0 karma

if you reach most of the stretch goals you will unlock a huge world of 450k . How can you make sure the objectives of side-quests will not be 2 much repetitive (have unique experiences, not the same one when different NPCs ask you to make similar activities over and over again with almost same content)? In short: how to ensure the right balance between quantity and quality.

ArikHelman0 karma

Our 450K land is already designed, but we're not unlocking it because we want to add more quests and depth to it.

Our goal is to add as many high quality quests and levels to CivCraft, and for that we will open as much as we need to from CivCraft's world. We've never considered quantity over quality, and our stretch goals will ensure we won't have to compromise

ArikHelman0 karma

So, It sure has been a lively AMA, hasn't it ?


We're going on a short recess and will be back later on. In the meanwhile, thank you for your interest

Raketenschubse-2 karma

Can we somehow pledge per paypal ?

ArikHelman1 karma

Kickstarter doesn't support PayPal at the moment, and we can't open a similar pledge service in the middle of our campaign.

We may open an Early Access process through our site sometime after our Kickstarter campaign, but I don't have information on that at the moment

Asarn-2 karma

Hi, Any plans for after CivCraft and his DLC, a new CivCraft or another game with an original concept?

ArikHelman0 karma

Since CivCraft is in Early Access, we're focusing on CivCraft at the moment. We do have plans for DLC but they are only on paper at the moment.