Jibble

Author Topic: Black Sect Remake  (Read 20983 times)

HandsFree

  • Posts: 349
    • I can help with making music
Black Sect Remake
« on: 17 Jun 2012, 00:37 »


The people of Issegeac believe that their good fortune depends on the spellbook that has been in their village for over nine centuries. When the keeper of the text, your grandfather, is killed and the Grimoire stolen, the villagers ask your help.
Now it is your task to find the Black Sect's hideout and return the spellbook to Issegeac.

Lankhor's Black Sect is a great game. It has however a few features that where normal in 1993 but aren't so popular today. The game is timed, has dead ends, only 5 save slots, 20+ action icons, no smart cursor and you can die.

To make the game accessible to more players this remake features among other things:
- Timeflow based on player actions, so no dead ends
- Unlimited save slots (Well, I don't know that. More than 30 anyway)
- 2 action cursors
- Smart cursor that lights up over interactive areas
- Extra puzzles
- Changed puzzles to suit the new interface
- Updated hint system
- New sound and music

And kept from the original game:
- first person exploration
- Lankhor's art and animations (mostly)
- 31 locations to explore
- day and night cycle

Thanks to Cat and Arj0n for testing and additional graphics.

Download the game here

Hope you like it. :)

26-6-2012: Arj0n wrote a walkthrough for this remake. You can find it here
« Last Edit: 26 Jun 2012, 20:31 by HandsFree »

lakerz

  • Posts: 269
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #1 on: 17 Jun 2012, 02:31 »
I'm pumped to try this remake out HandsFree, thank you very much for seeing this project through to the end!!

From your list of improvements over the original, I think I'll enjoy my playthrough of your version.  I did not liked the timed version or the dead ends.

qptain Nemo

  • Posts: 680
  • a daredevel
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #2 on: 17 Jun 2012, 08:15 »
Oh dear. Definitely didn't see that one coming.
I can certainly understand the appeal of Black Sect. For years I'd been haunted by its curious feel, obscurity and excellent pixel art. Until somebody kindly made a fan translation.
Now I know what it is and I have played it to the very end out of curiousity.
So - "a great game"?
Seriously?
As I said I completely understand the interest, it was one of the most intriguing games to me for years. But a great game? Really?
I wouldn't say it's a bad game. Because that wouldn't be helpful to describe its nature at all. I wouldn't say it's not interesting. Or not appealing. Or not fun. I especially wouldn't say it's not unusual. In fact that's the root of its problems. That game is an experiment and as such it's most definitely a failed one. I have no idea how one could call its ridiculous sadistic design good let alone great. So if you could explain such a high opinion of that game I'd be grateful I suppose.

So let's just say I respectfully disagree very much with your judgement regarding the original game.

Now with that out of the way I'm certainly glad to see that I'm not the only person ever who was interested in it. And I'm definitely curious to see your reworked version.
Having played a bit of it, I must say I like most of your improvements. It's definitely much more smooth and less tedious to play. You left certain tiny hotspots in but at least you made them more visible. I liked the puzzle improvements that I've spotted so far. Also "searching" is the only extra action that I miss from the original. I think more adventure games should experiment with it. However as pretty much everything else it wasn't used well at all in the original Black Sect so I think just adding it up to what you can do with the use action was reasonable on your part as well.
All the sound effects you put in are absolutely wonderful. Great job with that. Your music is much better than the orignal soundtrack as well! A bit curious where did you get all these sweet sound effects.
It'd be really nice if the smooth transitions of different daytime lighting were there instead of it changing only upon changing player's location, but it's hardly trivial to add so I understand you not wanting to bother with it.
Also this game could do with a bit more detailed hint system methinks.

All in all, your version plays so much nicer than the original it almost feels like a parody of some sort. :D Well done.
« Last Edit: 17 Jun 2012, 08:37 by qptain Nemo »

cat

  • Mittens Baronet
  • Posts: 3,189
  • Saving Christmas
    • cat worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
      cat worked on a game that won an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #3 on: 17 Jun 2012, 09:01 »
Congrats on releasing it! I really enjoyed testing this game.

arj0n

  • Mittens Vassal
  • Posts: 2,851
  • art consists in drawing a line somewhere
    • arj0n worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #4 on: 17 Jun 2012, 13:29 »
Congrats on this release!

sthomannch

  • Posts: 835
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #5 on: 17 Jun 2012, 18:30 »
Very good game, indeed! Unexpected ending, which gave the game a nice twist (I never played the original, though).

david

  • Posts: 280
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #6 on: 17 Jun 2012, 18:45 »
Wow, what can I say? Just, wow...I've played the original one, but this remake was a great experience. I enjoyed it much more than the old one, obviously. :)
I am glad that you've made this game playable for us, contemporary players.
Thanks

Anian

  • Posts: 2,059
    • I can help with backgrounds
    • I can help with characters
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with web design
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #7 on: 17 Jun 2012, 22:19 »
Good thing this game is not timed, I really have no idea what to do wandering for an hour.
Still, it looks good.
I don't want the world, I just want your half

Grim

  • Posts: 911
  • *Dreamer Of The Day*
    • Grim worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #8 on: 17 Jun 2012, 22:28 »
I played it a lot today and really enjoyed it. Very old school, reminds me of classic games like Ween: The Prophecy and Elvira. One problem- it's damn hard. I'm glad you removed deaths. Although I never played the original, nor even heard if it, I can't imagine how unfair it must feel to die when simply examining an object... ;)

The walkthroughs I found for the old version are not really helping me... I know, not in this thread, but it might be an idea for someone to write it. I got as far as the dungeons of the sect;) Loving it;) Maybe tonight I'll dream up a solution to the puzzle I'm stuck with?:)

arj0n

  • Mittens Vassal
  • Posts: 2,851
  • art consists in drawing a line somewhere
    • arj0n worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #9 on: 17 Jun 2012, 22:44 »
The walkthroughs I found for the old version are not really helping me... I know, not in this thread, but it might be an idea for someone to write it.
Working on it, it's halfway finished now.

HandsFree

  • Posts: 349
    • I can help with making music
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #10 on: 17 Jun 2012, 23:13 »
Thanks for the praise everyone.  :)
I wouldn't say it's not interesting. Or not appealing. Or not fun. I especially wouldn't say it's not unusual. In fact that's the root of its problems. That game is an experiment and as such it's most definitely a failed one. I have no idea how one could call its ridiculous sadistic design good let alone great. So if you could explain such a high opinion of that game I'd be grateful I suppose.
Well, it's all those things you wouldn't say it's not. ;) But I agree 'intriguing' is a better word.
It'd be really nice if the smooth transitions of different daytime lighting were there instead of it changing only upon changing player's location
I wanted to do that too but I just couldn't get the lighting right for the on-screen objects when the background colors change. So I had to just get rid of those objects (fox, frog etc) when it got dark and obviously I could only do that on a screen change.
Good thing this game is not timed, I really have no idea what to do wandering for an hour.
The walkthroughs I found for the old version are not really helping me...
Are the hints not helpful enough? Or are you trying to do without?

Anian

  • Posts: 2,059
    • I can help with backgrounds
    • I can help with characters
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with web design
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #11 on: 18 Jun 2012, 00:04 »
Are the hints not helpful enough? Or are you trying to do without?
Actually I tried the help button before turning of the game for today, but it just said I need to find the book, which is kind of the point of the game, so I don't really see it as a hint.
I'll try again tomorrow.

EDIT: Finished. Some things were really hard to find without any logic of the placement in the world, but it still was a fun game, great atmosphere and the lack of dead ends really helped, deaths were actually interesting.
« Last Edit: 19 Jun 2012, 11:30 by Anian »
I don't want the world, I just want your half

HandsFree

  • Posts: 349
    • I can help with making music
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #12 on: 18 Jun 2012, 00:23 »
Actually I tried the help button before turning of the game for today, but it just said I need to find the book, which is kind of the point of the game, so I don't really see it as a hint.
Hmm, unless there's a flaw in the hintsystem, that would indicate you are still right at the beginning as the first hint indeed just explains you're looking for the book.
Feel free to take this to the hints forum if you need any help.

jkohen

  • Posts: 208
    • I can help with proof reading
    • I can help with translating
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #13 on: 18 Jun 2012, 06:18 »
I love the graphics, it seems very atmospheric. I never played the original, and based on the descriptions I probably wouldn't play it, but I'm definitely playing this version. Thanks for bringing this game "to the masses" :-)

Athanor

  • Posts: 25
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #14 on: 19 Jun 2012, 09:48 »
I made my registration here to thank you for this wonderful remake! I always wanted to play the original Black Sect, but found it much to complicated with its controls and frustrating with its dead ends. You give me the chance to play it without these "features". You made a very clever and really dedicated remake of this not so well known piece of software history! Now the only thing how it could become even better would be a remake of the other Lankhor-Classic, Maupiti Island ;)

HandsFree

  • Posts: 349
    • I can help with making music
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #15 on: 19 Jun 2012, 23:05 »
Thanks Athanor! I'm very glad you (and others) enjoyed it.
Now I have to confess that I have not yet played Maupiti Island, but I believe that game is already considered very good. So I'm not sure what a remake could add to it (unless somebody would update the graphics).

Athanor

  • Posts: 25
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #16 on: 20 Jun 2012, 07:51 »
I never played Maupiti through, for the same reasons I didn't play Black Sect through until now. Maupiti, as I understand, has the same "flaws" (or features; it depends on the player) as Black Sect in it's original form: A pseudo-realtime-clock and a overwhelming load of actions to perform. It would also be possible to use the (slightly animated) graphics from the atari st or amiga-version of the game. They are much prettier than the pc-version graphics in my opinion.
« Last Edit: 20 Jun 2012, 07:54 by Athanor »

arj0n

  • Mittens Vassal
  • Posts: 2,851
  • art consists in drawing a line somewhere
    • arj0n worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #17 on: 20 Jun 2012, 09:04 »
It would also be possible to use the (slightly animated) graphics from the atari st or amiga-version of the game. They are much prettier than the pc-version graphics in my opinion.
True, see a screenshot comparison between Amiga/Atari ST & PC/VGA.

selmiak

  • Posts: 3,852
  • ǝsıɔɹǝxǝ ʞɔǝu puɐ uıɐɹq
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with proof reading
    • I can help with translating
    • I can help with web design
    • selmiak worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #18 on: 20 Jun 2012, 14:39 »
except for the title screen the PC GFX win imho.

arj0n

  • Mittens Vassal
  • Posts: 2,851
  • art consists in drawing a line somewhere
    • arj0n worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Black Sect Remake
« Reply #19 on: 20 Jun 2012, 15:48 »
I think the PC version gfx got more 'warmth'...