The Ultimate Party Is An ARPG For 256

Panda Knife Tree understand what partying is really about: friends, fantastical beings, and the ability to gut these rare and precious beings so you can rifle through their entrails for loot. Mwa-ha-ha-ha. Er. Their upcoming browser-based game Ultimate Party promises to bring you exactly that, and then some. It won’t just be your standard isometric ARPG, oh no. It’s supposed to be an MMO ARPG, which seems to mean “You can play with 255 like-minded hellions instead of just six.”

The website is infused with techno-eldritch terminology, ranging from “interpolated atmospherics and image based lighting” to “choreographing virtual actors.” What does that all mean? I don’t know. I really don’t. It might have something to do with hailing Cthulhu for a tea appointment. But, that doesn’t matter. Because the reason I’m here, and the reason I’m writing words about Ultimate Party, is because of its combat animation. Look at this. There is a delectable smoothness to the way the barbarian in this GIF swipes, lunges, and punches at the air with his shield. He isn’t just smacking the air, he has made fighting look positively balletic. And that, my friends, is a sight for cynical eyes.

I’m tentatively keen to see what Ultimate Party can bring. Despite the fact it is being billed as a true MMO ARPG, Ultimate Party doesn’t sound like it is trying to innovate either genres. Combine them, maybe. But not innovate. And that’s okay. We’re constantly inundated with new when sometimes what we really need is more of the same, except with, you know, more. The only question now is if Ultimate Party can truly rock what it has, when it finally inches into the big, blue world.

27 Comments

  1. Miguelese says:

    II like the way this looks too ^^

  2. misterT0AST says:

    Is it isometric or 3d?

    • Viroso says:

      It can be both. Isometric is a camera angle in video games.

      • Pliqu3011 says:

        Not completely. While a 3D game can be isometric and vice versa, an isometric view is not just a camera angle. A regular 3D camera applies the rules of perspective as we know them in the real world and an isometric 3D camera does not.

        • Viroso says:

          I think isometric is just an angle to show stuff as being three dimensional. An angle that lets you see all three dimensions of an object. Which I know sounds absurd when talking about 3d graphics but makes sense for 2d stuff. And then that camera angle got copied over and over again out of convention even in 3d games where it isn’t necessary anymore so now we just accept isometric as being that 45/30 degrees camera angle.

          • empty_other says:

            … objects drawn with isometric projection do not appear larger or smaller as they extend closer to or away from the viewer… [wikipedia]

          • Mr. Mister says:

            Empty-others is right on that. I mean, I haven’t read nor been told the exact meaning of isometric, but I can deduce just from its etymology that it has to do with invariability under some kinda transformation. In this case, it’s the

            That is, an “isometric view” is a 2D-projection, while a non-isometric view would be like camera. If you were to refer to the field of view, then a non-isometric would have a positive FOV spreading from a single point, while an isemoetric view would have a FOV of 0, but you’d be only the tracerays inciding perpendicuarly into the plane section of non-nill surface area that is your screen (I assume it is a plane).

            Quick example: Any sprite-based top-down game with no z-axis scaling is isometric. Completely Sprite-based Age of Empires-esque games (if the terrain is also sprite-based) are is isometric. Most figuratively isometric games with 3D models are not literally isometric (there’s nothing stopping you from making a game with 3D models and an isometric camera, but I’m no programming engineer, so I won’t make assumptions and tell you why they’re not that spread). Rule of thumb in an inclinated camera angles: if a unit isn’t always the same size in pixels indepently of at which position on the screen it is, it’s not isometric.

            With all that said: it’s common to refer to figuratively isometric (aka a view with non-small angles with all three axial planes) as isometric, independtly of its literal isometry (or lack thereof).

            EDIT: Yeah, as Shadowcat says below, those are just the requirements for it to be dimetric. To be isometric, the projection has to be such that the three axis’ projections all form angles of 120ยบ with each other.

      • Shadowcat says:

        Well sure, isometric (usually dimetric, really, as I learned not long ago*) graphics in computer games are almost invariably “3D” (e.g. think Knight Lore); but modern “3D” graphics are almost invariably not dimetric — regardless of camera angle — because almost all modern 3D graphics provide perspective.

        Dimetric graphics in games were a way to provide 3D without the expensive calculations needed for perspective. Modern hardware makes those calculations cheap, so almost everyone uses perspective now (and it wouldn’t surprise me if nowadays, when using 3D hardware, doing it without perspective was actually harder).

        Syndicate: dimetric.
        Syndicate Wars: not dimetric.
        Satellite Reign: not dimetric.

        (*) pixel width:height ratios mean that the cleanest-looking approximation doesn’t result in isometric angles.

  3. randomkeyhits says:

    I can imagine the lobby.

    LFG : need 10 healers 6 tanks and 227 more damagers.

  4. Rizlar says:

    So it’s sort of like Realm of the Mad God?

    • AXAXAXAS MLO II: MLO HARDER says:

      I thought the same thing. Although full-3D isometric Realm of the Mad God isn’t something I’d dismiss.

      • Rizlar says:

        Yeah, sorry, that wasn’t meant to be snarky, a more elaborate Realm of the Mad God could be amazing!

  5. alms says:

    I like the looks of it, but their site seems very focused on the technological aspects rather than the actual game.

  6. Baggypants says:

    Unity! So… Browser based but not for mobile. Or Linux. Well done.

    • Fattsanta says:

      Not everyone’s trying to make a mobile game.. or one for many different platforms. Better luck next time!

    • Premium User Badge

      Phasma Felis says:

      None of that is actually true, though. Unity has supported iOS and Android (and Blackberry and Windows Phone) for ages (though I can’t imagine why you think a game like this is a good fit for phones). Unity for Linux is in open alpha and will probably be done by the time this is out.

      • vecordae says:

        No. Every bit of what Baggypants said is true. There is no Unity web plugin available for Linux or the two main mobile OSs nor will there ever be one. There is no Linux Unity web plug-in alpha and there won’t ever be. Unity for WebGL is coming out eventually, though, which doesn’t use any kind of plugin, but that’s not going to happen for a bit according to Unity themselves.

        • Premium User Badge

          Phasma Felis says:

          Obviously any mobile version of the game would run on an app, not directly in the browser.

          Although I’m still boggled as to why you’d want it on moble. We’re not only demanding that an MMO ARPG work on phones, but in a browser on phones?

          • vecordae says:

            “Mobile device” means more than “smart phone.” It’s perfectly reasonable to want a game to be available for play on one’s iPad or any number of android tablets, laptops, desktops, or HDTV add-ons.

            And why bother running it in an app if you can run it in a browser? That way you have a single version of the product, far less logistical overhead, and the ability to sell folks a game they can play on pretty much anything. Plus, the guys at Humble Bundle have been experimenting with something similar and, honestly, it’s kind of awesome.

          • Premium User Badge

            Harlander says:

            Isn’t deploying to an app or a browser just a matter of which button you press in Unity?

    • theslap says:

      Unity can most definitely export to phones (iOS and Android). Unity via the Web Plugin is obviously not supported on phones. It sounds like their planning to keep it browser-based meaning no phones but just saying “Unity!” no support for phones is wrong.

  7. Nereus says:

    Oh man, are my closest 254 friends gonna be stoked. That 255th one is going to feel mighty down, though.

  8. Shadowcat says:

    Panda… Knife… Tree…

  9. purpledoggames says:

    Here’s a video of pre-alpha gameplay: link to youtube.com

  10. runonce says:

    This seems to be more like a developing framework than a game itself.