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Samwise Didier Unveils Stormgate's Creeps 2.0

Hello, everyone.

Today, we’d like to introduce you to the new direction that we’re taking with Creep Camps in Stormgate–let’s call it Creeps 2.0. 

What are Creep Camps and why do we love them?

We’ll start with a definition, as many modern RTS games don’t have Creep Camps; they are a game mechanic that WarCraft III players are more likely to recognize. A Creep Camp is a group of neutral minions that our level designers can place on a map using our in-game editor to provide players with an optional challenge resulting in a reward. Creep Camps provide players with powerful incentives to leave home base and encourage more active play. In Stormgate’s case, that reward can vary from additional resources, to map vision, to a speed boost, or healing.

Each of Stormgate’s highly asymmetric factions also has a unique attribute that provides the player with an added incentive to control Creep Camps. Vanguard players, for example, can benefit from Unit Veterancy and earn valuable experience to level up their key units. Infernal Host players, on the other hand, can Infest Creeps and bring them back from the dead as additional Fiend units. Our upcoming third faction also has its own mechanics revolving around Creep Camps as well.

Creep Camps 2.0

With Creeps 2.0, Creep Camps will incorporate capture points. When the last Creep in a Camp dies, a circular capture point will be activated. Keeping friendly units within that radius for a certain amount of time will 'capture' that camp, giving its benefit to your army or team. Once captured, this point can be recaptured or 'back-capped' by an opponent which will change the allegiance of the camp, making them dynamic points of interest on the map at any given time. Enemies can contest control of a capture point with their own uncloaked land and air units. However, Sentry Posts, Shroudstones, and other structures are unable to take or contest a capture point. Capture points, we believe, will make for exciting skirmishes over their control, versus the current winner-take-all result of dealing the killing blow on the last surviving Creep minion.

When a capture point is captured, it will often provide a combination of local and global benefits to the player. Local benefits ensure that battles that take place near the capture point will have a twist while global benefits allow for capture points that are off the beaten path to impact gameplay. For example, capturing a health camp might grant the capturing player greatly increased health regeneration near the camp but a minor health regeneration bonus no matter where they are on the map.

We also like the idea of capture points triggering an immediate effect once claimed. That can include spawning a powerful neutral minion (we’ve been using a placeholder catapult in our playtests so far), or one of our other Creep Camp rewards, like map vision, health regeneration, or movement speed boost. After a certain amount of time, the Creep Camp units will respawn, but at a higher level that increases both their difficulty and the quality of their reward. All players in a game will be able to see the current level of any Creep Camp so that they can gauge how actively they’re being used, and choose whether to contest them appropriately.

We believe this new version of Creep Camps will more greatly encourage players to contest territory across the entire map throughout the entire game. Previously, Creep Camp locations were only important to contest when the creeps were alive. But with these new changes, players are encouraged to contest and hold all of the Creep Camp locations no matter what state they’re in. Even as a player with a smaller army, you can maneuver your forces around the map in a way such that you’re able to hold a significant proportion of capture points on the map.

Farewell, feathered friends

Until recently, our Creep Camps have featured temporary art (like our Viking Chickens) while we worked with a legendary artist to shape the future look of these neutral minions. While we will miss our fine-feathered fill-ins, we are excited to see how our new neutral minions, designed to fit into the lore and worldbuilding of Stormgate’s future Earth, will help make our game feel that much more immersive and fun.

Today, we are excited to share a behind-the-scenes look at the concept art for these new Creep Camps with a video narrated by none other than our friend Samwise Didier. Sammy worked with many of us as the Art Director on the Warcraft and StarCraft RTS games back at Blizzard Entertainment. We are honored to share that he’s been contributing his unique talents and artistic vision to Stormgate. Sammy put together this killer video sharing a walkthrough of his process for creating the concept art behind the first of our three new Creep Camp families, the Scavengers. Watch it here

So who are the Scavengers? The Vanguard are Earth’s best hope for survival. As the player-controlled human faction, they represent humanity at the height of technological prowess and scientific knowledge. But other survivors of the Infernal onslaught that nearly wiped out mankind can still be found in the wastes around the world. Nomadic tribes, some more violent than others, seek out unpopulated corners of the Earth and have reverted to barbarism and plunder. Players will encounter various bands of dangerous foes as they fight for control of territory, including the savage mechanically-enhanced Scavengers. In the future, we’ll share a look at our other Creep Camp families: the Cultists and the Cannibals. 

Coming to the Stormgate Closed Beta at the end of April

Closed beta players will get their hands on some of the changes coming to our new Creep Camps in the upcoming Frigate playtest. If you haven’t already become a Stormgate Founder, you can purchase a Founder’s Pack via Indiegogo here and take part in the playtesting. The upcoming closed beta (kicking off at the end of April) will also be our playtesters’ first opportunity to get their hands on Stormgate’s unannounced third faction–which . . . may or may not be a race of magical anime cat girls. 

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