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Windforge’s Giant Denizens
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Last week I wrote a bit about the mining feature in Windforge, and how we can use it on other things in the game with organic shapes like skywhales. In addition to skywhales we are also planning on putting in a few other large creatures in the game.
 

Sky Whales

We are working on bringing the skywhale to life in the game right now. Check out this screenshot of it in action so far. (Please note that some of the art is still placeholder.)

Windforge Sky Whale

Under normal circumstances in the game, skywhales will be docile unless provoked, so as long as you don’t bump them with your ship or shoot them, they shouldn’t bother you. If you do provoke them, they will fight back aggressively, so be careful. There will also be a giant boss version of the skywhale that will be tied into the main storyline.
The animations are coming to life as well. Check out this animation of it opening its mouth:

Windforge Whale Animation
 

Giant Squids

The giant squids will reside in the lower atmosphere of the world. They will be very dangerous and aggressive, so care must be taken around them at all times. I’m inspired by the ancient squids that lived on earth back in the Silurian Period (440 – 415 Million years ago). We don’t have any concept art for the squids yet, but I think this image I found shows what I’m thinking pretty clearly. (See link below for the source page)

Silurian Reference Art

Like the sky whale, there will also be a boss version of the giant squid that will be tied into the main storyline.
 

Turtle Islands

Last but not least, are the turtle islands. Like the name implies, they are giant turtles that use entire islands for their shells. They are peaceful creatures that will run away if you hurt them.

I’m really excited about the turtles islands, because you will be able to build on, and drill in their shells without harming them. (assuming you don’t drill too deep). So, if you feel inclined, you will be able to make yourself a little house on a turtle back and drift around with them.

Please excuse my horrible coffee stained sketch, but I think the picture below shows what I’m thinking:

Turtle Island Concept
 

Mineable Animals

Like the skywhale mining I was showing in my last post, I’m planning on making all of these creatures minable as well. So far the response for the skywhale mining feature has been really positive, with the exception of a few people that are disgusted or think it’s cruel. A few quick articles were even written about it that I linked at the bottom of this post.

I should point out that it is not our intention with this feature to promote animal cruelty. In my opinion, animal mining is a very natural feature to include, since I want to make everything out of blocks that I can get away with. Also, freedom of choice and expression is very important to this game. You won’t be forced to kill and harvest whales, and you definitely won’t be forced to build castles out of their corpses. The choice is there if you decide to take it, and I believe it would hurt the game to remove these choices.

I also think that mining whales is a choice that will let players express their values. If you decide that killing whales is wrong, you can avoid killing whales and limit the number of whale based products you use in the game. Alternatively, if you value wealth over the lives of whales, you can become a whale hunter. Finally, if you’re amused by this sort of thing, you can strap a zeppelin balloon to a dead whale corpse and fly it around. Either way, you have choices, and you can express your values the way you want.

LINKS:
Giant Squids Picture: http://eonsepochsetc.com/Paleozoic/Silurian/silur_home.html
Skywhale Mining:
http://indiegames.com/2012/06/windforge_is_aerial_whalecraft.html
http://www.gamersdailynews.com/story-28573-Players-Will-be-able-to-Mine-Skywhales-in-Windforge.html