Hinterlands: One To Get Behind?

Giant Shopping Spree.
That was quick. When city-builder-specialists Tilted Mill recently revealed they were pursuing a Direct-selling digital downloads model we presumed it’d be a while before we saw anything other than a remix of Children of the Nile. We were wrong. Hinterland, their first game, is apparently going to be available before the end of Summer. Which will be going some, as looking out the window into rainy England, it appears that Summer is already over. Still – from the details that they’ve teased out, it’s sounding like some kind of compelling cross between a Roguelike and Dwarf Fortress. Which is going to provoke a woo. Woo!

While there’s a trickle of information on their site, you’ll be best directing your eyes to Tom Chick’s interview with the guys. Reading between the lines, it seems to be pursuing a more intimate image of what a heroic adventure could be. Set around a single village, you play the general organiser and hero, getting a party to come with you and leave their ploughshares behind and adventure, while all the while the village keeps on ticking over. All of which reminds me of a serious attempt to do almost Seven-Samurai style initimate environment – and that Loot, Level and Build tagline kind of hints at a sort of missing link in the questing game. In the same way Depth of Peril’s increased attention to the village rejuvenated the game, this is absolutely brimming with potential.

I’m excited, in short. Random generation. Intimate scale. Low-magic. Refocusing in the fantasy genre to lead to novel interactions. The word “Hinterlands”. This couldn’t be any more my sort of thing if the characters all kept on pricing up Skaven Army lists while listening to Orange Juice records.


  1. yns88 says:

    I was going to skip past this article until you used the words “roguelike” and “dwarf fortress” in the same sentence. This game better be damned awesome now, or I’ll have you know that was a gross abuse of the words. Also your interview “link” just goes to the Hinterland main site.

  2. Al3xand3r says:

    Good concept. That’s about all I can see.

  3. Kieron Gillen says:

    Yns88: Fixed.


  4. The Hammer says:


    (Er, the interview is the same URL as the site, btw).

    EDIT: bah! Beaten to it.

  5. yns88 says:

    Well, the interview and site seem interesting, but I’ll have to hold my judgments until they reveal information about the actual gameplay mechanics.

    I did like the part on magic in the interview, though, and this style of game is just right for that kind of innovation.

  6. SwiftRanger says:

    For a game that’s only a few months away it’s a bit suspicious they haven’t released actual screenshots yet. I am also wondering what third-party engine mentioned in the interview they’re using.

    Sounds a bit like an evolved Majesty, which is nice.

  7. Al3xand3r says:

    Well they haven’t been in the hype game so it’s not very suspicious to me. I’m sure we’ll see more in the coming weeks since this is probably their starting attempts at getting hype before release. For a smaller company I guess there’s no reason to waste time and resources in hyping a game you barely know you can complete within a given time frame.

    What IS weird (and off topic) is that Fallout 3 is also a few months away, but instead has been getting hyped to hell and back for months now, and yet we still don’t know how it actually plays unless we start imagining Oblivion with guns, which is what Bethesda have been trying to tell us it isn’t. When will we see the game dammit? [/rant]

  8. Theory says:

    The more I read, the more I like.

    Edit: Aha! I just realised exactly why I’m so drawn to the concept: it’s a much better version of an idea I had during my Age of Empires 2 mapping days. :D

  9. Acosta says:

    I just want a Dwarf Fortress I can bite, the stories are awesome and make me want to escape to a desert island with it and play forever but the game keeps rejecting my advances with its complete disdain for intuitiveness.

    Call me interested on this one.

  10. Heliocentric says:

    I hope you are able to either control the villages growth, or indeed leave it to its own devices and just try and strenthen it, coming back with a convoy of mules and invigorate the farming for example.

    Indeed, I’d love if relocation was indeed a possibility, found a new town somewhere else. A very exciting idea of a game indeed.

  11. Theory says:

    Indeed, I’d love if relocation was indeed a possibility, found a new town somewhere else. A very exciting idea of a game indeed.

    Judging from the interview you’d start a new game instead.

    If you could keep the same characters between games though… :-)

  12. Al3xand3r says:

    Hmm… Giving this a bit more though… I came up with…

    My Life as a King where you actually do the quests and exploring yourself (with a party) instead of sending random AI adventurers? And all tailored to the more mature CRPG style rather than that game’s JRPG roots? I’m so sold now, even if it lacks the amount of potential outcomes of a standard roguelike or Dwarf Fortress.

  13. Jim Rossignol says:

    This does sound fantastic.

  14. Jochen Scheisse says:

    Fantastic sound it does.

    This sounds like it could be the sequel to Stronghold I’ve waited for so long. The AD&D Stronghold from ’91, mind you.

  15. Frank says:

    Hope they use real folklore

  16. DSX says:

    Anyone else have an itch for a updated game along the lines of The Settlers V and The Guild 2? (very cool games) I was hoping this might be it, but it doesn’t look like it. Still though, it seems very promising.

  17. Jim Rossignol says:

    I couldn’t quite get into Guild 2, but it’s certainly an overlooked game concept.

  18. thesombrerokid says:

    orange juice, so far ahead of thier time they might of been time travellers and scottish aswell which obviously makes them better :D

  19. Urist McInterfacewhinerscaneatalovegland says:

    Ditto the first comment. Dangerous ground.

  20. D says:

    Couple’a screenshots up on the Hinterland site. Looks good. Interface seems nice. Doesn’t look like you have a build menu on there.