Ever since the ancient wars of mages, the world has been a dark place. As to the Distorted Lands, regular folk avoid them like plague. Yet this is now your new home. Your magic powers bid disciples from all over the land to come look for you. Other forces are looking for you, too – and their intent is much darker.
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Release Date:
Q2 2019

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“With our previous game (Gremlins, Inc.) we already went through 6 months of Early Access ahead of the full release – and we loved it! The community feedback that we received, lead to new features and improved balance of the game.

With Spire of Sorcery, our plan is the same: we will release the game, publish the development roadmap, and then will adjust our development plans according to the feedback that we receive from our core Steam community – with frequent updates and regular blog entries.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“We plan that Spire of Sorcery will be in Early Access between 6 and 12 months.

However, as with our previous Steam release, we plan to keep updating Spire of Sorcery for many months (and even years!) after the full release. The day of the full release will be the day when we're confident that we arrived at version 1.0 of our game design objective; and then we will just continue updating the game as usual.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“In terms of content, the full release version of the game will have the bells and whistles that the Early Access version will not have at its launch date: unique icons and illustrations for different types of events and items; more music and more sound effects; more events in general.

In terms of game mechanics, the full release version of the game might have advanced levels of gameplay built on top of the core mechanics – depending on how we progress with the balancing of the overall player experience, and whether we find these extra layers of gameplay necessary.

In terms of user interface, the full release version of the game will definitely have multiple improvements based on what we discover during thousands of games completed by the community during the Early Access period.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“When Spire of Sorcery launches in Early Access in 2019, the game will be fully playable at its core level: recruit disciples, teach them and discover their personalities and traits; upgrade your spire and manage your resources; send parties on quests across the global map of the world and receive reports; conduct research and otherwise manage your mage's time. Finally, the game will already have a final stage and you will be able to win (or lose) the main campaign.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“Like with our previous project, we plan to increase the price once the game transitions from Early Access to full release.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“The close involvement of the Steam community is the sole reason behind our decision to launch Spire of Sorcery first in Early Access. During the Early Access period of our previous game, we already developed the tools that allow us to process player feedback and synchronise our development priorities with what the community feels might benefit the project the most – in a transparent way. We are used to releasing updates as often as every 2 weeks, in order to keep up to speed to the community feedback.

Our first game would not be the same without the many contributions (large and small) of dedicated players from different regions around the world. We know that we can design, develop and deliver a great original game – but we also know that we cannot predict all of the aspects that will make it truly enjoyable experience that will give players 100+ hours of terrific player experience, and this is where the involvement of our community is truly irreplaceable!”
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Planned Release Date: Q2 2019

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Recent updates View all (56)

May 10

CLOSED BETA: THIS WAY =>



Hi everyone,

It’s been a few weeks since we posted a new issue of development diary here, as we’ve been all very busy with loads of things happening on different fronts. We hope that you missed us as much as we missed you!



Our work on Spire of Sorcery just passed the road sign that says:

CLOSED BETA: THIS WAY =>

When I asked our game design team a month ago if we will reach the closed beta stage any time soon, they told me “No”.

And when I asked them the same question this week, their answer changed to “Soon”. Which is a huge change for the better!

In my experience, only the game design team can estimate how close we really are to the release, because they know how things work on the inside. We might already have visual assets for “dead disciples” and “thunderstorm event”, but what really matters is whether or not these concepts exist in the game’s code.



So how soon is this “soon”, really?

We currently think that we will enter the closed beta stage between 6 and 8 weeks from now, that is – around late June/early July. As to Early Access release, this depends entirely on what sort of feedback do we get during the closed beta period.

Perhaps players will be happy enough, and we will just fix some bits and pieces before shipping the product. Or, perhaps, players will hit a wall somewhere in the user interface that will trigger a re-make of a significant part of it – in which case this will take at least a couple of months to reach Early Access.



What happens next, then?

First of all, we now start to prepare for the beta on the game’s official Discord server. In the following days we will start showing parts of the user interface to collect player feedback, and onboard people into invitation-only channels specific to the beta.

Secondly, we just set up a dedicated forum that we will use to collect player feedback on the beta. So, if you would like to participate, then please head over and register your profile there!

We’ll be back next week with the details of skill icons (which we finally finalized!), and as always, every Friday we’re here, on Steam, live-streaming the current build of the game.

See you soon!





:summer_magic: Spire of Sorcery – Character Generator (Steam)
:summer_magic: Official Discord server
:summer_magic: Official forum
:summer_magic: YouTube recordings of the development live streams
:summer_magic: Twitter (game updates)
:summer_magic: Facebook (game updates)



:malice: Official Discord server
:malice: Twitter (game updates)
:malice: Facebook (game updates)
:music: Original Soundtrack on Spotify



:notebook: Charlie Oscar’s developer page on Steam
:notebook: Twitter (studio news)
:notebook: Facebook (studio news)
:notebook: "Behind the scenes" Instagram
:notebook: YouTube
23 comments Read more

April 19

#52 – HILLS & PLAINS



Sometimes people ask about our plans for the Early Access period: what exactly is going to happen during that time with the game, and how long do we expect that period to last?

Our current expectation is to spend about a year in Early Access, depending on how quickly we exhaust all major opportunities to significantly improve your player experience. As long as we see the potential for significant improvements, we will remain in the Early Access state.

As to what do we plan to do – there are three big areas that we expect to focus on:
  • user interface and localization. Our experience shows that the community will definitely discover parts of the interface that can be improved, as well as parts of translations that can be more precise.

    Even with Gremlins, Inc., a game that is three years old, we keep receiving excellent suggestions on adding certain elements to make the experience better. Not to mention the occasions where we introduce a new card and immediately hear from the community a suggestion for a better name for such card.
  • modding tools. One of our biggest ambitions with Spire of Sorcery is to empower the community by providing an easy-to-use editor that allows creative people to try new things with this game.

    Whether it’s about new game events or about new types of skills or new types of rooms in the Spire, we’d like to give the community the opportunity to experiment. And we have no doubts that some of the funniest and original experiences will come through modding!
  • more content. At the moment, for every creature that we already have in the game, we have two more creatures on the designer’s board – waiting for their chance to come to life.

    Because we do not know yet how you, dear players, will play the main campaign, we leave a lot of things open for the moment, to have the ability to fine-tune and balance the game in the Early Access period through adding new creatures and new resources.

And now let’s talk about today’s topic: Hills and Plains of Rund!

HILLS & PLAINS



When we started working on the Hills, we tried different options.

Hills is a biome that offers long-range visibility but is not so easy to pass through due to all the climbing up and down that one has to do as one travels across the region. Because of this, in terms of speed of travel, hills are comparable to the regular forest.

Plains are much easier to pass through and offer a high speed of travel (even though roads would be still faster).



This is the final color sketch of the Hills. What you’ll see in the game is the same image, but with a bit more details.

Tasljuks, Gigglers and Stingtails live in both of these biomes.

Stingtails pose a risk if encountered during their feeding time. Such risk is significantly higher on the plains (because there’s nowhere to hide from this predator).



Plains were quite easy to conceptualize. Finding the right color for this biome proved to be much harder.

Because of the long-range visibility, traveling through plains poses the risk of being easily spotted by unwanted parties who also travel through these lands. The risk is, however, smaller in the Wild Lands, where there are no villages or cities, but only occasional camps of outcasts (closer to the Distorted lands one may also encounter mutant camps and settlements).

Hills are mostly used for mining (they are home to a wealth of minerals: almost every mineral known in Rund can be found there). Hills also often contain caves, some of which may have explorable sub-locations.



Here are the first three color solutions for plains that we explored. We did not like any of these.

Most of the plants on hills and on plains are rather common for Rund, with a few exceptions. Dwarf everlast can be found only on Hills. Sleep grass, thorn apple and thistle can be found only on Plains (sleep grass, by the way, poses a danger of its own: unsuspecting travelers that cross the fields of this grass during its flowering season can fall asleep for much longer than desired, leaving them defenseless against the other common dangers of the biome).



Going through three more color options, we really liked the last one, number six. You’ll see it in the game, with a bit more detail.

Finally, we think that both plains and hills will eventually get their own unique non-human dwellers and animals (hills are quite likely going to become the home of Stone Eaters) – but that will happen much later in the development process, once we come around to balancing these regions during long runs of the main campaign of the game.





Here’s work in progress (and final results) on two inventory items relevant to these biomes. The first is a Giggler’s Egg, which can be collected from the nests of these animals. It’s used as food (when cooked), as well as an alchemic ingredient. The second is an exotic fruit, which grows in abandoned gardens left from the Age of Mages. These gardens can only be found on the plains of the Wild Lands. The fruit is a delicacy on its own, and is also used to prepare more elaborate food rations.

–––



:summer_magic: Spire of Sorcery – Character Generator (Steam)
:summer_magic: Official Discord server
:summer_magic: YouTube recordings of the development live streams
:summer_magic: Twitter (game updates)
:summer_magic: Facebook (game updates)



:malice: Official Discord server
:malice: Twitter (game updates)
:malice: Facebook (game updates)
:music: Original Soundtrack on Spotify



:notebook: Charlie Oscar’s developer page on Steam
:notebook: Twitter (studio news)
:notebook: Facebook (studio news)
:notebook: "Behind the scenes" Instagram
:notebook: YouTube
33 comments Read more
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OFFICIAL DISCORD SERVER



Spire of Sorcery has its official Discord server, where we share our work in progress on the project. Use this link to join the community – or click on the image above!

CHARACTER GENERATOR ALREADY AVAILABLE!



Spire of Sorcery – Character Generator, a free standalone companion tool for the game, is already available on Steam! Download it here, create your own characters – and share them with the community!

About This Game



In this original mix of strategy and RPG designed by Alexey Bokulev (author of turn-based strategy Eador. Genesis and digital board game Gremlins, Inc.), you will:

  • expand and upgrade your magic spire, balancing the needs to research, craft and defend;
  • choose and teach your disciples, discovering their personal traits and collaboration capacities when matched in parties and sent on quests;
  • explore the vast open world stretching from the Empire to the Distorted Lands, seeking new knowledge, resources and sources of power – as well as establishing relations with the locals.
But above all else, you will try to survive: the troops of the Inquisition are roaming the land, hunting for runaway mages; and dwellers of the lawless wild, human and not, are on the lookout for easy prey.

Yet your most powerful enemy is neither of those. It is the time itself – the approaching death from old age. Only one thing can save you: the elixir of youth. Several ancient manuscripts mention it in passing... There must be a way to learn the formula. There must be a way to obtain the ingredients... Before it's too late.

THE ANCIENT WARS OF MAGES


A long time ago, powerful mages ruled these lands. They moved rivers, they summoned monsters, they created new races of non-human servants for their own needs and pleasures... They also waged wars. It is one of these wars that brought the whole world to the very brink of collapse. Whole regions burned and mountains melted as thousands of souls screamed in torture. In the end, the great mages completely destroyed each other, and as they died, their final curses tore the land apart, creating anomalies that we nowadays call the Distorted Lands. Places that a few dare to visit. Places where abnormal is the norm.

THE INQUISITION


The suffering of the people following the last war had been so great that once the world cooled down from the violent storms, one of the very first groups to rise from the burning ruins was the order of the Inquisition. Said to be more powerful than the Emperor himself, this order is focused on controlling each and every person who possesses any magic powers – and on hunting down those runaway mages that seek to practice the forbidden skill. To the Inquisition, magic powers are a curse, and any practice of these outside of the strictly licensed guild is a sin punishable by torture and death.

THE EMPIRE


As the troops of the Inquisition were making the first arrests, a new state – the Empire – was proclaimed in the part of the world least touched by the war. Officially, the Empire stretches from the coastline and to the mountains, and, with a number of strongholds, provides protection to the population otherwise besieged by all sorts of rogues. Unofficially, the Empire's influence starts to fade even before you leave the capital's gates, and by the time you're in the wild lands, the decisions of local lords always count so much more than anything that the imperial court may try to impose.

THE SPIRE


Until recently, you were an ageing mage casting simple spells under the strict control of the Guild. As years passed by, this satisfied you less and less. You started to look for books that held secret knowledge, studying them when no one could see you... until the day of the surprise search in your rooms. Ever since, you've been on the run, escaping the Inquisition by moving to the only region which even they avoid: the Distorted Lands.

Here, on the edge of the wild lands, you cast the forbidden spell for Spire of Sorcery and, tapping into the source of power, erected your new home: a magic fortress bound to you alone. You and the spire are connected so close that when one falls, the other follows. This is the domain that you can never leave. Yet from here you can still explore the whole world – with the help of your disciples.

Build, upgrade and customise rooms of the spire: libraries and herbal gardens, classrooms and prisons, living rooms and monster kennels, laboratories and warehouses, treasury and caverns, observatory and watchtower – your priorities define the capabilities of your spire and shape your strategy of exploration and survival.

TEACH!


As you develop your spire, disciples start to arrive at your door. Some heard your magic Call; some just heard about you from their friends. At first, you don't know much about them except for their looks and what they choose to tell you. With limited number of living rooms in the spire, will you prefer to accept a farmer's daughter distressed by her own magic powers – or a dedicated student of arcane who yearns for new knowledge, even though his skill is on a lesser scale?

Some of these disciples come to you to escape repressions. Some seek the light of wisdom. And some come in the pursuit of greater personal power. As you accept and teach them, you will discover their true personalities and find them fitting roles in your spire. One will become a great explorer, traveling fast and surviving any hardships. Another will become a gifted gardener, and secure your supply of the rarest ingredients. Yet another will become a traitor, trying to poison you.

Select, teach and direct your disciples on the quests inside and outside the spire. Your choice of strategy may yield a few powerful young mages focused on deep research into the elixir of youth – or an army of simpletons excavating artefacts all over the land, looking for the books lost in the ancient wars.

EXPLORE!


Legends claim that back in the days of the powerful mages, there were spheres that could show you what happened all the way across the mountains – and that through them, you could even converse with others. Nowadays, one hardly knows what happens across the river, as the wild lands are overtaken by rogues and monsters. But perhaps one day you will re-discover these long-lost magic artefacts of the past?

With disciples ready to depart on the quests of your bidding, ancient ruins and abandoned mines will reveal their mysteries to those who survive the expeditions. By sending parties and setting their goals, you will map dwellings, points of interest and sources of power. Your disciples will meet rogues and vagabonds, settlers and lords, animals and monsters. Through the eyes of your students, you will discover the non-human races of the past as well as the few ancient creatures from the pre-war era who continue to prowl in the wild, accumulating greater and great powers.

Explore the open world created anew each time when you start the campaign, charting new lands and deciphering new secrets. Maybe your brightest disciples will go missing in the Distorted Lands, lured by the innocent-looking fluters; or maybe they will befriend the many-handed Librarian and unlock his treasure trove of manuscripts? The story of the campaign is yours to write.

SURVIVE!


Here in the wild lands, bandits and gangs are a fix of the local landscape. Looking for the weak, they will move to an easier prey once you step up your spire's defense. As to the local dwellers, not everyone appreciates a mage moving in, and quite a few may try to claim the contents of your cellars. Not to mention seasoned adventurers on the mission to raid a castle or two (and make it off with the artefacts).

As your spire gains notoriety, it will start to attract more visitors, including stronger private armies – as well as the troops of the Inquisition, who never forget or forgive. And as your disciples travel the world, other dangers will loom: from illnesses contracted far away on a quest and brought back to the spire by the returning disciples to dangerous spells triggered by the explorers, which can range from having a few ghosts to having to battle a full-blown death curse. Your old age is approaching, too, rendering you fragile... until one day you become too weak to defend the spire.

Survive the immediate dangers while looking for the formula and ingredients of the only thing that can offer you the truly lasting power – the elixir of youth. Whether you find it, craft it or trade it, this is the item that will decide the ultimate success or failure of your campaign!

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/10
    • Processor: Intel 2.3Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel Iris 5000
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Internal
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/10
    • Processor: Intel i5 / similar AMD or higher
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 7XX / similar Radeon or higher
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Internal

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