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Utraean Peninsula: Zombie Apocalypse

I have started on a new project, it's called Utraean Peninsula: Zombie Apocalypse.

https://github.com/foerstj/upza

The idea is to alter the Utraean Peninsula to tell a different story, and make players find their ways in a world that they know but that has changed.
The story is that there was a zombie apocalypse on the Utraean Peninsula, wiping out most of civilization. Ten years later a Legion ship tries to set foot on Meren but gets stranded on the Eastern Island. So your first way leads you from there through the Great Northern Forest to Elddim, and from there you can go on exploring the rest of the map.

The concept is similar to a "UP 867" idea I explored a while ago. The initial idea was to have a Utraean Peninsula before the Legion arrived, but I soon realized that, with all the bridges and elevators removed, the map would become completely untraversable. Now, with the approach of a zombie apocalypse, I can leave these things intact (or remove/break a few of them at will, let's see).

No no no hear me out! And don't worry, work on Green Range will continue as planned! Wink

So far I've set up a Legion camp on Eastern Island, and finished work on GNF & Elddim. In Elddim I removed the fields and thatch roofs, and added plants in the town, broke a few tables and such.
The main work of this project will consist of a) zombifying the NPCs and b) landscaping. Shuffling plants and removing paths and ruinating the towns. I'm sure "zombifying" and "ruinating" are real English words.

I'll try to leave the quest lines intact. For example, when you kill the zombie that was formerly the guard captain of Elddim, it drops Relran's diary, which initiates the Hovart quest.

For now, the shop zombies drop their entire store content. I might reconsider that because it's a shitton of loot, but I'll see how it'll pan out.
I've left you Loola on the Eastern Island as a still-working shop to sell & buy equipment, and I want to add a Legion shop to provide a little standardized, Legion-themed equipment as well. Apart from that, I guess I'll have to add one or two more shops on the map. Maybe the Droog weren't wiped out by the zombies, or something. Because returning to the Eastern Island all the time to sell your loot would suck. On the other hand, what do you want with that money anyways? The former shops will literally drop their items for free...

Here are some more pics, for those who can't be assed to clone the repo and build the map themselves (everyone, I guess).

Here's where you start - shipwreck on the north beach of the Eastern Island:

Your way to the mainland: taking the magic elevator to GNF and fighting the skeletons and mucosa (quite hard actually)

Were you looking for the path? It's almost vanished after 10 years without maintenance...

Zombie Krug, of course:

All the NPCs will be turned into zombies. Here's a former legion guard at the exit of Hovart's Folly

Also Elddim is more overgrown than it used to be

Thatch roofs are gone, only the tiled ones remain

Here's a cool gimmick: "self-service mules" that can be added to your group without a merchant

I realize I should make them single-player only... it's on the list!
I'm not sure if I'll have any companions on the map at all. But the mules will help you carry loot.

Here's what happens with the shops currently. The two mules are loaded after this! As I wrote before, maybe I'll have to balance this a bit.

Here are the people in the shrine

So, what do you think? Any comments, apprehensions, ideas? Shoot!

Where do i find the dsres and dsmap files. clicked on link and could not find the files.

Haven't released a build yet. To run the build script yourself you'd need my approximate setup. Not sure what happens if you'd just tank the repo contents directly, might as well work.
I was thinking of doing GR v0.7 first, but maybe I can release a UPZA build with a few more quick fixes...

Done! Here you go:
https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.1
If you try it out, tell me what you thought of it! I assume you know the way from Eastern Island to Elddim? Cause I removed the signposts muahahaha

I downloaded the files and will check it out later and let you know what I think. Thank you again Smile

Ok I play this game about 2-3 hours and reach Elddim (level 13). Some place are very hard to pass (no choice to make "potionaholic" and "faertehbadgar". No drdeath!
I want to start again and go up about 2 towers to see something (to see what I don't known yet).

Good game to play. Bravo

I am going to start over because I made a wrong turn and ended up in the endless desert and can not find my way out Laughing out loud

Thank you for playtesting! I am sorry and also delighted to hear of your adventures in the map. Going straight from the Eastern Island to Elddim should take less than an hour and give you maybe level 3. One of you arrived after 2-3h with level 13 and the other got lost after "a few hours" in the Endless Desert. Hilarious! Of course I know the direct way because I've walked it many times now and had it open in Siege Editor for days.
But that's one of the ideas of this project. I have played the Utraean Peninsula map so often I felt like I could navigate it blindly, but it's a different thing entirely to actually navigate the map after it was changed. I hope I will get lost in one of my playtests as well!
I've attached the UP map overview in case someone doesn't have it yet:

Attachment: 

I found the correct elevator and I am off the island Smile will play more later but I have to watch ghosts on TV

Whoever drew the blue lines, didn't draw nearly enough of them.

Okay I am in Elddim, Is this a solo mission or is there someone I can add to my party? I get bored talking to myself. So what the heck is next. Just do the old quests, without looking for town stones? If that's the case it was fun while it lasted.

Ulyss wrote:

Ok I play this game about 2-3 hours and reach Elddim (level 13). Some place are very hard to pass (no choice to make "potionaholic" and "faertehbadgar". No drdeath!

I want to start again and go up about 2 towers to see something (to see what I don't known yet).

Good game to play. Bravo

------------------------------------------------------

Ok I reach Elddim (level 11). At this city you find 4 quests if you kill monsters. That include Elddim stone ...
By the way if you take the HUB, you find 7 tough monsters (good luck) ...

About companions:
I'm not sure about companions, would you like to have some? It might not be easy to put them into the map for logical reasons - it wouldn't make sense to just meet someone in the middle of completely ruined & zombified Elddim. I was thinking maybe I could make some of the legionnaires on the island hireable?

About the mission / outlook for map development:
I want to preserve the quests if possible, like I managed to do with the Hovart quest, simply because why not. I'm not planning to give the map a great new epic storyline tho. Maybe in Castle Hiroth is the Evil Baddie Lord of Death who is responsible for the entire apocalypse and you can defeat him as an endboss. But I also hope the players simply have some intrinsic motivation to walk around in a deserted map...

About the HUB:
Yeah haha! I decided to make the challenge a bit harder for the players, in that at least in the beginning they are barred from using the HUB, and are instead forced to find the physical way to where they want to go. I assume that, when the player has reached maybe Fallraen, they can skip through the HUB without dying, and at Meren level they might try to actually fight the Lost Witch to free their way.
What do you think? This is supposed to be a map for people who know the geography of the Utraean Peninsula, and I really want to persuade people to use this knowledge instead of relying on teleportation. Maybe the enemies in the HUB should be stronger / weaker? Maybe I should disable it entirely? Or maybe use a different mechanism? I could activate each platform if the player possesses the corresponding townstone. Or simply activate the platforms "from outside", like the smaller displacers that also need to be "calibrated" from one side.
Yeah maybe that's a good idea. Let's say during the zombie apocalypse mayhem the HUB got "de-calibrated" and the player can activate the platforms from outside. So in Elddim you can only enter the HUB and leave the same way, and once you're in Crystwind you can move between Crystwind and Elddim. I like this mechanism because it allows low-level players to return to Elddim (and from there to the Eastern Island) earlier, while it still forces high-level players to find the physical way between the high-level towns. And if two people accidentally start a multiplayer game in different places, they can both access the hub from their places and meet in the HUB.

You could put dead companions in the Elddim inn and/or church. That we could resurrect if we had the correct nature magic spell. That would solve the problem with a living person in the town.

Okay I continued on, and I am currently headed to Fallraen, A few lucky monster drops and I am no longer alone, Ulora is with me. I know it is a spell that is outside your map however it does not matter. Just like a weapon mod and a shield mod. I still have to find them on your map. Which is very difficult. Took and hour for one of the monsters to drop an extra spell book. On we go. Smile

I see, I definitely have to add some sort of companions. Personally I like the idea of soloing the empty Peninsula better, but why not give players the choice. There are plenty of people who solo KoE, even. I'll make some Legionnaires hireable. And hey maybe Lagreth, who got preserved in frozen state...

Don't head outside Elddim. Nothing is edited out there, except that Krug/Bandits/Wolves were zombified everywhere already. I mean, by all means continue playing, but you're essentially playing single-player Utraean Peninsula now.
Weapons/shields/spellbooks are hard to find? Didn't the smith zombie in Elddim drop two mules worth of equipment? Does the mage zombie not drop spellbooks? And of course currently you can still go shopping in Crystwind etc. and when I'm finished with those places you could still go back to the Eastern Island to go shopping there.

Me I prefer to play KOE + LOA + UP with Dungeon Siege 2 (with Legendary Mod version 1.01 of course).
More fun and less cheating on my part (no more "faertehbadgar", etc). Just find a way to increase
the "compass" and the game become perfect.

Note: in the process of upscaling almost all original DS2 game videos (200X), from Movies1.ds2res +
Movies2.ds2res. Big job but very feasible and the result will be beautiful!

Make this an improvement on the original UP's lame ending.

The original hero(es) collected the townstones and opened the - what was it called? They went inside and shut it down - but in the meantime, enough red mist (a slow poison) had been released to kill and zombify everyone in the peninsula, except maybe for a lucky few who had a way to evacuate completely. And Loola. Now the mist has dispersed but the damage has been done.

Sorry, this does mean most quests must be removed (already completed, and anyway the quest-givers are dead) and items put in new places. Eg Hovart has gone for good, and his gavel, if it still exists, is in the Crystwind magic shop. You could have it, though, that the Pit of Despair and the chicken level were never visited.

yea, i just finished watching the entire resident evil movie hexology and some ideas could be borrowed from those movies.

areas deep underground could be considered to be undefiled or unreachable by the red zombie gas t-virus as there may be doors that seal these areas off. so there may be survivors that were lucky to escape underground to escape the gas. looking for and rescuing survivors could be a side quest of the map. helping the survivors fight their way out could also be a side quest. then the town could be partly repopulated with the survivors and the shops could become active again.

which brings me to the next point, the hub seems to be a separate realm in its own dimension or plane, so its probable some survivors fled to the hub to take refuge and they deactivated the hub platforms to cut off pursuit by the zombies and to prevent or at least slow down the zombies' spread throughout the peninsula. the player can reactivate the hub platform for each town by finding the respective stone for each town like u said which can also be a side quest on its own.

as for companions, yes, some of the legionnaires could be made hireable but some quest must be completed first before they can join your party. maybe find some potions or medicine for them as they are too injured from the shipwreck or find them some equipment first before they can join as they lost all their gear when they shipwrecked. some of the survivors rescued underground or in the main hub dimension could also be made hireable once rescued.

for the issue of bare elf getting lost or some players going in the wrong direction, maybe u could temporarily introduce some blocking objects to block the entrance to the lost pyramid of spirits? because the endless dunes, grescal and the lost pyramid of the dead are high level areas anyway and a new player wouldnt wanna go in that direction anyway... so this forces players at the start to take the elevator to the twin towers of the great northern forest. maybe unblock it later when some quest is completed or maybe when the zombie endboss in castle hiroth is killed, then the player must go to grescal and the endless dunes to the lost pyramid of the spirits to go back to the eastern island and tell the legionnaire ship captain (if he survived and the captain didnt go down with the ship like he's supposed to) or the legionnaire shipwreck survivors that u have resolved the UP zombie apocalypse. its safe to return to town now.

also the beginning could be made easier by replacing the skeletons and mucosa with weak skeletons and baby mucosa instead, that way its less of a grind for a new char.

"Hi you, wanna smash some zombies on the depopulated Peninsula with me?"

I just finished a new milestone release which covers the entire Elddim area: https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.2

Major changes:
- Covers Elddim Glade & Lowlands, Iliarth Valley, Crypts, Hovart Marsh & Folly
- Companion 2nd Legion mate, the first one you meet on the shore of the Eastern Island. His name is Peter and his level is 0
- Legion shop at the base camp on the Eastern Island sells legion equipment. Cadet armor has 20 defense without equip requirements - a good deal for the beginning
- The HUB is no longer occupied by the Lost Witch - I settled for the solution where the platforms need to be "calibrated" from outside, just like the Displacers. This way the HUB can already be used from the beginning (e.g. teleporting back to Elddim when you reached Crystwind), but it forces the player to make their way to each town by foot at least once

This is how you enter the Peninsula now: two people wearing legionnaire armor. Much easier to face the skellies and especially Mucosa

The H.U.B. has been reverted to its pristine condition. But as mentioned the teleporters need to be activated from outside.

Hiking through Iliarth Valley, coming by a ruined farm.


Close to the Crypt, here once was a guarded bridge. The guard is still "there" (in some sense) but the bridge is gone. Luckily there's a second bridge only a few steps further.

The usual things at Horty Olof's Adventurer's Emporium and Chicken Farm - ruined house, zombiefied Horty. And his mule is up for grabs

This poor former legionnaire guard is now undead - first concept of a slimy-green dwarf zombie

Hope you like it!

https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.3

This pre-release of "Utraean Peninsula: Zombie Apocalypse" adds coverage of Crystwind and its mines.
Other changes:
- Two more 2nd Legion Mates are hireable
- Adds 2nd Legion Robe for higher-level mages (courtesy of Tristanzz)
- Adds unused attack animations for human zombies
- Adds spider-webbed trees and bushes
- More minor changes & fixes

...And then I remembered I had planned to fill the town with skeleton mercenaries. Fixed that, and pushed tag v0.3.1.

The idea is that the players have to find their way on the peninsula that they know but that has changed. Here, they are supposed to find the way through the mines around the town, clearing the town later on their way to Quillrabe.

FYI I made another update on UPZA where Fallraen is overrun by Furoks. No zombies this time, corpses are all frozen.
https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.4

You're welcome to playtest it, but I'd rather have you focus on GR v0.10 Wink

Release v0.5 covers Lang and the Goblin Warrens. Lang is ruinated and the Goblins are peaceful & provide shops. Also I added the remaining hireable Legion Mates.
https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.5

What's left of Lang:

The shopping center in The Warrens:

Download: https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.6
Release v0.6 adds Meren & the Cloud Forest. On the shore of ruinated Meren, you have to confront the zombies of your former 2nd Legion mates and captain, to relieve them from the undead.

Leaving the Lang Mire to start the trek up to Mt. Utrae:

Summit screenshot is obligatory:

Fighting through the zombified Bandits in the Cloud Forest:

Arrived in ruinated Meren:

Confronting the zombified captain & mates of the 2nd Legion:

https://github.com/foerstj/upza/releases/tag/v0.7

This pre-release of "Utraean Peninsula: Zombie Apocalypse" adds coverage of the Redwood Gap with the Flooded Sanctuary and the Pit of Despair, the Fury Den, and the drygrass section of the Iliarth Canyon. Droog are not yet zombified.
Other changes:
- Added Goblin shops for jewelry and miniguns
- Broke the bridge in the Redwood Gap
- Zombified Cyclopses; made Furies green & expanded them into the western Redwood Gap
- Added a mad archaeologist in the Pit of Despair

Some pics as usual