Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

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Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

Postby Yali » Sat Nov 15, 2014 2:12 pm

(reposted from the MOUL forums)

Hi all...

I've been steadily working on a small Myst fan project this past month titled Mirrors.

The idea was to develop a small area, specifically a building which I've named The Blue Tower. I am making this entirely oldschool in the style of Riven, only with high-res graphics rather than the pixelated compressed stills in Riven, because hey, its 2014, and I've always wondered what high-resolution Riven would look like. I also happen to like the style of pre-rendered stills where I can position the camera in an artistic way so as to get the best shot.

The plan is to develop the entire building this way as a test for a possible UE4 version later on to see if I could create decent game play in the traditional style of Myst. There are a few reasons why I'm doing this:

a) I don't know UE4 very well at the moment, although I'm down to learn when it becomes cheaper.
b) I know Max pretty well.
c) This will fill a gap in the Myst fandom for Riven style Myst-ness. I'm all for 3d but sometimes there is a certain nostalgia for the 90s way of doing things that hasn't been recreated.
d) This is essentially a test game for a much bigger concept.

The story and world of Mirrors is something which I've been developing for some time now. About a year fully with ideas stretching back a decade as a Myst fan. Many ideas are bound to change in the process as things become more fully fleshed out, although the main plot and lore are pretty solid at the moment.

I developed a lot of ideas on my blog Allatwan.

Here is the MAP of the Age.

The Story:

The Age of Mirrors was written by a D'ni man named Likkeh or Likke in Capolanese (the native tongue of the Age) where he discovers the remnants of a long lost civilization akin to the Ronay called the Ruun who posessed the Art of linking. Rather than use books the Ruuni developed advanced technology that could launch them into the heavens where they could transcend the fabric of space-time.

Likkeh was captured by the King of Capolan four years after he arrived on the Age where he was condemned to death. Luckily the King of the neighbouring kingdom of Caspar saw that Likkeh was privy to much arcane knowledge that could be used to help his kingdom. Likkeh was given the position of head-wizard in the capital of Caspar where he was tasked with uncovering the ancient civilization of the Ruuni and aiding in the development of "magic" for the realm. However, secretly Likkeh is investigating the dark underbelly of the age and gathering information about how the ancient knowledge of the Art was lost and how the Runni civilization collapsed.

The Age of Mirrors was only one of the Ruuni's many ages, however as it stands, it is their tomb, as their technologically advanced civilization has been eroding away over twenty millenia. Their once genetically unified race is now divided into a myriad of new species, some showing native heritage as well as the heritage from many off age species.

Secretly there lurks a subset of society that has been keeping an eye of the politics of the day, knowing more of what has been hidden and buried, and pulling strings behind the scenes as directed by an ancient echo.



I am also looking for modelers and texture artists along with anyone who would be willing to help with concept art. I don't consider myself the best 3d artist out there so this would increase the quality and speed of the project. Send me a PM and/or post in this thread if you are interested in helping out!

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Re: Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

Postby Yali » Fri Dec 12, 2014 10:34 pm

Just wanted to bump this with some news!

First, I've decided to divorce Mirrors from the Myst universe. This is for the better because rather than riff off of Cyan's vision with my own grandiose ideas, I get to create my own vision which complements my own immense lore and concepts. This is actually freeing. I feel I can really do my own thing now.

Second, I wrote up A LOT of lore and started a blog for reference concepts, photos, art, writing, and music. It can be accessed here at http://www.mirrorsgame.tumblr.com.

I've also started a whole new area! Disappointed that I had to re-render some scenes in the office due to lore inconsistency (the D'ni map), I've decided to start fresh with a new area of the Blue Tower.

Here are the new renders:

Mirror Hallway

Second View

Description on DA page

...and from the blog, here is the new lore for Mirrors:

[Reveal] Spoiler:
Realm of Mirrors: Mega continent of Miras

This is the official map for a universe I am developing loosely tied/inspired by Myst, Riven, and Uru as well as Elder Scrolls. Mirrors is only one of the Ages in this universe (or Realms as they are called on Mirrors).

Mirrors, named by its colonizers, the ancient Ruuni people for its strange quantum properties that in select locations on the realm reflect alternate realities of the same realm. These locations are known as the doors - portals that create a tunnel to different possibilities in time, dimension and space. The Ruuni believed that somewhere on the realm is a portal that directly reflects the realm's properties, allowing passage to a polar opposite mirror realm.

The Ruuni linked to this realm over 20 000 years before the current day. The realm was decided as an ideal candidate for colonization due to its strange properties as it was considered a good playing ground for scientific analysis and development for the Ruuni's inter-dimensional technology. While this was true and the Ruuni prospered here for many millenia, their arrival awakened an ancient beast. Where there is an art there is an artist.

The Ruuni's empire hit many hardships before crumbling apart; their home world cut off, their society in chaos, their ancient knowledge lost and their technology in ruins. Mirrors would be the tomb of the Ruuni people.

Several attempts to regain their former strength would last for brief periods but ultimately would result in destruction and failure in re-uniting the realm. The last of these was the short-lived Axian Empire ruled from Damaske some 5000 years prior to the current date.

The realm consists of a planet also named Mirrors. There are four continents: the pangaeic Miras (shown), the small volcanic Iris on the opposite side of the globe (not shown), the cold Nuverim in the far south (not shown), and the cold Altaeym in the far north (not shown).

Miras is where most of the main action takes place.

There are eleven kingdoms on the continent, here are descriptions of all:

Capolan: Capolan is the merchant kingdom of the west. It is geographically semi rugged with forests in the northwest and center, marshes in the east, fertile cropland and plains in the central south, and arid semi-desert in the far south. It is ruled by a merchant aristocracy in Dansk, the island capital at the beginning of the Navoo River. Capolan's peoples are mostly of the Axian race who have olive skin, green eyes, and red hair. The architecture here is famous for its grand archways and domed buildings. The kingdom was founded after the dissolution of Marctolia - the heir kingdom to the Axian Empire along with Caspar. Capolan is also a major naval power and they have economic dominion over the western isles, namely the prison island of Banthos and the marble quarries of the Hyleagaran isles.

Caspar: The gem of the south as it is called by its inhabitants. Caspar is a hot subtropical kingdom of grassland, desert, mountains and wetlands, home the rich Caspari. It is a religious center for many sects who wish to explore and debate the mysteries of archaic magic. There are many temples and shrines across the land of various kinds owned by different religious communities, the main one being the Magentic Order. Caspar is also a great artistic haven as it produces the most creative exports in the form of crafts, religious art, fabrics, magic items and music. There are two main races who inhabit the land, one being the elite Axians who make up the urban population in Damaske and the Rebeen wetlands and the other, the enigmatic Uruunki who inhabit the western grasslands in tribal collectives. The Uruunki are of a different lineage than the Axians and are believed to be indigenous to the Realm prior to the Ruuni's arrival. They are tall, black skinned with red eyes and blond hair. Their language is only known by select intellectuals in the capital who have studied the race.

Damaske is its capital, nestled in the Axian Vale within the Caspen Mountains. The Caspen Mountains are jagged and rocky and separate the arid grasslands of the west from the fertile wetlands of the east. Damaske is home to the Imperial Red Tower, built by the ancient Axians where King Rimah III now rules over Caspar as an independant kingdom. South-west lies the smaller Blue Tower, also known as the Wizard's Tower where chief wizard Master Likke conducts research into the ancient Art of Ruun. Here he performs experiments with the fabric of space-time, hoping to discover the origin of the phantom threat that has since plagued and injured Mirrors. Likke is secretly not of this realm, for he is a traveler from another realm who is bent on uncovering Mirrors' secrets and restoring order to the realm of the Ruuni.

Maradoir: is the expansive western-most kingdom of the mainland. It is divided into three geographic regions - the southern swamps and rainforests called the Doir, the arid coastal dunes of Sadiva in the northwest, and the volcanic Veth plateau to the east. Doir is the largest region and gives the kingdom its name (Doir meaning wet) and it is the main inhabited region that holds the most power. Its capital is the tall swamp city of Cess built out of rusted metal pylons and planks and ornate wooden houses that rise out of the water in a vertical stretch. The ruler is King Horne (known as the fattest man in all of Miras) who is famous for his bad breath and renowned nose-pimple. He rules Maradoir with a drunken fervor, supporting organized crime and piracy against the neighboring kingdoms. Many who have been in his presence speak of the mountain of food that is hoarded in his kitchen, believed to be stripped from the peasantry as tax.

The people of the Doir are mostly of the Mara race known for their pale ghostly skin, milk white blond hair and pearl-green eyes. The Mara are an offshoot of the Ruuni race that is believed to have been a product of breeding with the original inhabitants of the swamps, a long vanished race called the Nago.

Sadiva is home to another race called the Sara. The Sara are the inhabitants of the dunes beyond the Hoo Mountains that divide the wetlands from the desert. Due to the nature of their region, they are always clothed in robes and metal masks that hide every corner of their body. It is believed by the Sara that they must hide their skin to protect their true nature from the outsiders, namely the Ruuni descendants, as desired by their goddess Diva Araaya. Araaya is one of the goddesses that makeup the western pantheon used in Capolan, Caspar, Maradoir and Vail.

The Veth Plateau is inhabited by outlaws and Vethmen who prowl the volcanic plateau in search of travellers to rob. Veth is scourged by ash, smoke and flames and is sparse in vegetation. The terrain is rocky and red with many hidden basins and tunnels where the natives reside.

Vail: Vail is the western maritime kingdom known for its great shipbuilders. It is a trade center and military power among the western kingdoms. Piracy is also hugely prevalent in Vail as it is seen as a heroic profession in Vailin culture, however disdained it is by their rulers. The Vailin are tall and built, with blond hair and ice-blue eyes. Their frames are larger than the average Ruuni.

The Kingdom of Vail consists largely of coastline and forest along the Hieraic bay. The island of Megarta at the edge of the bay is home to many wealthy estates made rich by the naval industry. The Vailin are chief allies of Capolan and staunch enemies of Maradoir. The Sara to their south often become involved in clashes between the two kingdoms.

Lemen: is a long mountainous kingdom built on a peninsula that stretches north into the sea. It is ruled by the Lemenese, a tall silver haired people with long faces and grey pale skin. The Lemenese are primarily a scholarly people who prize knowledge over anything else. They are famous for their schools of philosophy and scribes who perfect the art of bookmaking. Books are the primary symbol of Lemenese culture and libraries are built all across the Smoky Mountains in high towers guarded by guildsmen.

The Lemenese peninsula is made up of a volcanic chain known as the Smoky Mountains which are tall, sharp and snow-capped. The south of the kingdom is verdant and more temperate harboring many wealthy towns where rich lords rule. The Lemenese are allied with Dorion but enemies of both Vail and Maradoir over long existing conflicts tied to legitimacy over the western isles.

The Lemenese people are believed to be from another realm. Ironically however, they themselves do not know from which realm they come from.

Torr: Torr is the island kingdom off the coast of Lemen across the Sea of Rust. It is a rugged landscape filled with ruined remnants of the ancient Ruuni civilization. Torr was once a large industrial island used solely for the Ruuni's space program. It was here that massive inter-dimensional ships were built and launched into orbit before breaking the dimensional barrier. The landscape is littered in rusted scrap metal as a result. Ancient factories and subterranean power plants now serve as dark industrial dungeons where the Charma race reside in droves. The Charma are grey-skinned subterranean peoples with thick knotted hair and pearl white eyes who live in isolation from the surface. This race is believed to be descended from prisoners who were kept in large converted underground prisons during the end of the Ruuni empire. Legend has it that the ruler of Torr, during the late days of the Ruuni civilization, at the request of a foreign voice, arrested and imprisoned all of his population who did not swear allegiance to this foreign power. They were forcibly imprisoned in the converted factories and power plants beneath the then abandoned spaceport after Ruun lost contact with their ancient home world. The Charma prey upon surface dwellers who dare venture deep into the industrial depths. One must be careful when visiting Torr for there are ventilation shafts that are hidden beneath the bushes, allowing for a dangerous plummet. More frightening are what may come up and bring you down.

The capital of Torr is Torica along the Ist river in the south of the island. The Toric people who inhabit the surface are golden skinned with thick black hair. Due to the highly industrialized environment of the island, they are the primary engineers of the realm. The Toric have forged an intellectual alliance with the Lemenese in their quest to use science to rediscover the ancient Art of inter-realm travel. The northwestern city of Brie is Torr's cultural capital while Mekana on the western island of Gaid, off the western coast of Torr, is its industrial capital. Mekana is famous for its large iron bridge that binds the main island to Gaid and then continues westwards into the Sea of Rust where it drops off, believed to have connected Torr and Lemen in ancient times.

Dorion: Dorion known as the Flat Kingdom or, ironically, the Land of Colors, is the most eastern kingdom of the western lands. It is barren plain and grassland with the occasional tree that achingly climbs out of the rocky ground. Known for its general lack of color with its grey cold windswept plains, it is ironically nicknamed as such for its famous colorful murals that are painted on a variety of structures across the territory. These murals are the craft of the Windmen, the subservient class of people that live on the plains under the tyrannical rule of the crazed King Saadrewa. Saadrewa, who rules from the iron-walled capital of Sonea at the heart of the plains, is a cruel bitter man who is rumoured to have poisoned his father, the previous king, to gain the throne when it was found out that he would not be chosen to succeed him. King Saadrewa uses the Dorion cavalry to scare the populace into submission while he plans a war against Maradoir and Capolan. Dorion is known for its poor soil and thus most grain is imported from the south. Saawedra, in order to maintain his power, has wed his sister Zonia to the Lemenese King Ishtur to utilize the Lemenese navy at his disposal should Capolan decide to intervene in the affairs of Dorion and cut off his grain supply.

The Windmen are horse riders united in rebellion against Saawedra and their calling cards are the colorful murals which depict the crimes of the King so as to be seen by the common people in the hopes of inspiring a rebellion. The people of Dorion are the Zerrada race, the pale skinned and black haired inhabitants of the plains. Their eyes are greyish-blue and their stature is, on average, tall and rail thin. These people cover themselves in dark fur robes for fear of indecency as is the cultural norm in Dorion. Their chief deity is Zoraia, the goddess of Ara which is believed to be an ancient Ruuni realm whose inhabitants immigrated to the Dorion region during the height of the Ruuni Empire. Here the Ara race came from their home world to establish a new society away from the then turmoils on Ara. In the subsequent millenia they interbred with the Ruuni forming the Zerrada race. Their language of Zerradan is largely based on ancient Aran.

Larm: Known as the Silent Kingdom as it is ruled by a petty king in a town no larger than a hamlet for a non-existent people. Larm is scarcely populated save for four villages on its western edge. The majority of the kingdom is fetid swamp and marsh poisoned by gaseous sulfur vents. Asivis is the largest of the towns and holds the King's hall. The three villages of Anga, Trimadi, and Lara are home to six inns and two meager farms. Drink is really the only true friend in Larm.

Tokai: The heartland kingdom of Tokai is densely forested in mammoth trees that rise more than half a kilometer high at the core of the kingdom. Their trunks have, on average, diameters of fifty meters and are used to house interconnected cities built out of mud and wood high up in the canopy by the Tokeni race. The Tokeni race are native to the age and have never interbred with Ruuni colonizers for the two races are too genetically different to properly reproduce. The Tokeni are short and thin with large heads and thick straight black hair. Their eyes are large and dark and their noses short and flat. The Tokeni rule Tokai themselves with a high king based in the forest capital of Tok. Here he rules in a massive wooden palace high above the ground.

The Tokeni forest begins at the eastern edge of Capolan in the county of Oshvo, on the western coast of the Heartland Sea, and grows in size and height eastwards into the heart of the continent. The Heartland Sea is home to many forested islands where the Tokeni fish and hunt. There are networks of boardwalks among the shallow stretches of water where reeds grow that connect village to village, island to island, and provide easy fishing spots designated with symbolic carvings. The Tokeni do not worship any of the chief western deities but rather their own deity named Amka who is the deity of the sun. There are many temples to Amka across the waters visible by large cloth sails depicting the solar rays of Amka attached to the top of said temples.

Within the forests are the massive chain of mountains known as the Ankhenar mountains which rise up out of the woodland to scrape the clouds. The Ankenar Mountains are the largest and tallest range on Miras. The further east one ventures, the higher and more rugged the terrain becomes. The easternmost section of Tokai is less inhabited and home to larger varieties of trees that block out the sun from the forest floor. Here, deep in the shade, are many species of large glowing fungi which are bio luminescent in nature, some a deep blue, others a bright yellow or burning orange.

Ackeron: South of the Heartland Sea is a large peninsula in the shape of a horn that stretches out into the southern ocean. This is Ackeron, a kingdom that is a veritable hothouse, filled with crime, dangerous wildlife, and scorching heat. The west of the kingdom is covered in Savannah where large mammals graze and Rebeen Uruunki people's hunt. This Savannah is halted by the Volkuri mountains, a volcanic range that is in formation, and as a result is one of the most hostile regions of Miras . Ash and soot are spewed out of the chain on a regular basis and wild carnivourous simians prowl the mountains in search of prey. The eastern side of the mountains holds the Jadavi desert, a long stretch of highly arid and burning hot dunes. The south of the peninsula is covered in deep red-leafed jungle that grows out of the volcanic residue left over from the forming range. The coastline is rocky with many shipwrecks. Piracy is ripe here and indulged by the Ackeron nobility of southern Axian princes. Ruled from the desert city of Manitir, the Ackeroni trace their lineage to the great rulers of Axia of the third and last Empire. Axia was the last time Miras was united under one rule, and the Ackeroni trace their bloodline back to its capital in the Axian vale where the city of Damaske resides. The Ackeroni claim legitimacy to Axia and enlist pirates and bounty hunters in eliminating their enemies and controlling trade so as to expand their rule across all Miras.

Jade: The Crystal Kingdom as it is called. Jade is a completely alien world as compared to the rest of Miras. As the Tokeni forests give way to the fungi ecology at the edge of the Ankhenar Mountains, so do the fungi give way to a myriad of new bizzare species of flora as one ventures further east. The forest gives way to grassland at the edge of the Ankhenar range and here the fungi that were flourishing in the depths of Tokeni forest are allowed to grow and grow to enormous heights. The eastern fungi have evolved to stand tall and slender like Tokeni trees amid the vast fields of Jade, forming a new family of flora altogether: the Jadai.

The Jadai evolutionary branch is hallmarked by large, brain-like parasols that are segmented into four quads and are brightly lit by bioluminescent cells that shimmer like crystal and change color in waves in response to the weather and various stimuli. Thus Jade is named after the Jadai. The Jadai have out-competed the once tall forests of the region, although small varieties of trees exist, the landscape is largely Jadai based - ranging in all types from sky-scraping tower varieties to short and wide varieties.

The Jadic people are from a wholly other branch of Ruuni that split off after the fall of their empire. The Jadic are taller with red and purple eyes, pale skin and a variety of hair colors ranging from silver to red to pale blue. However, the Jadic are a flamboyant culture and prefer to color their hair in striking colors to match the Jadai which they revere. Hair is often cut in fan-style either horizontally from one ear to the other or as a crest from the front to the back of the head. Body ornamentation is highly prized in Jadic culture as it is a sign of wealth and cultural capital. Tongue piercings, chains, nose rings and elaborate nails are all elements of traditional Jadic dress

The capital of Jade is Narma which is a megalopolis of twisting black towers capped with onion domes that encircle a central palace and temple. The religion of Jade is a mix of eastern Diva worship and philosophical mysticism tied to arcane magic. Contrary to the Caspari who believe that magic is the nature of the Art, the Jadic believe magic is a means to regaining the ancient Art and thus bettering it. The Jadic nobility are closely tied to the kingdom's religious leaders and use the fear of the so-called "Vana" to entice the population to perform ritual sacrifice to the temple. The Jadic rulers speak of the Vana as the destroyer and consumer of all Mirrors and ask that their people must sacrifice for the coming war. They speak of an outsider known as the Nemirea, or Mirror Man, to defeat the Vana and lead the Jadic as the rulers of all Ruun back to their home world.

Lune: The northeastern kingdom and the most mysterious of all. Covered in swamp, forest, mountain and cold desert, Lune is the kingdom of the Lunare. The Lunare are a race separate from the Ruunic bloodline and trace their lineage to the ancient realm of Lun. Lun was once an age conquered by the Ruuni at the height of their empire; their people brought to Mirrors as slaves in the construction of the massive industrial island of Torr. After the fall of the Ruuni Empire, legend has it that the Lunare were united by a wise woman known as Heira who called all Lunic peoples from across Miras using arcane magic to found a new civilization in the northeast. Here they would plot to join the Vana in destroying the Ruunic peoples and find a new realm to conquer themselves with the help of the Vana who they revere as gods.

Lunic temples are built out of obsidian in reverence to the Vana which they believe will consume the negative forces of all Ruun. The Lunare themselves are tall, grey skinned with deep blue eyes. Their symbol is the black cobra with a deep blue circular halo above its head. The cobra is believed to be symbolic of the true form of the Vana. Lune is home to many serpent species which gives it the name as the Snake Kingdom (or the Black Kingdom which is used by the Westerners and Jadic to cause fear in their population of the enemy Lunare who are considered a threat to all Ruun). Due to this long existing hatred of the Lunare, it is considered quite a luxury to own a Lunare slave as it is a symbol of Ruunic authority and wealth. Moreover, the Lunare are fierce warriors inspired by religious frenzy and thus they are harder to capture. The Ackeroni as a result have become masters of the slave trade, and with the help of Jadic princes, engage in generational human trafficking of Lunare for Ruunic customers.

Lune's south is forested by tall coniferous trees while the west is covered in swamp along the Moth coast, named for its famous species of giant moth that flutter amid the mists. The north is cold and arid with ice-capped mountains that traverse the barren expanse of land . At the edge of the Dharas Sea is a peninsula of red-stoned mountains where at its center is an enormous active volcano named by the Lunare mount Vemm, meaning "Mother". The northern Lunare tribes people worship Vemm as their god who they believe will destroy both the Ruuni and Vana, as it is believed that the Vana will betray the Lunare and destroy them as well. These peoples call themselves the Vemmic Lun and reject the black snake as their symbol as well as the main Lunare temple.
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Re: Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

Postby Smashmello » Thu Dec 18, 2014 5:48 pm

Looks and sounds awesome so far! have you already got someone for the music?
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Re: Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

Postby Yali » Thu Dec 18, 2014 8:45 pm

I have no one really besides myself at the moment. A friend is helping out with concept art, but I'm looking for people who like my lore and world and would be keen on helping out more on the 3d and game engine side of things.
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Re: Mirrors: A WIP Myst fan game

Postby Prom361 » Mon Feb 02, 2015 3:17 am

this is a very interesting project!
and soon end my own, I wish you to finish well!

I do not know EU4, I preferred to stay on UDK, visually less pretty, but much more complete yet!

but if you would like to try UDK (free) and if you have any questions, I will help you!

good luck!
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