15 Nov 10

The evolution of a Kingdom

We’ve mentioned the Kingdom before, but we haven’t actually spoken about what it is. Essentially it’s Desktop Dungeons’ new menu. Some of the changes to the full version required a bit of a reboot to how players initiated a dungeon run, plus we wanted to have the meta-game be more visible and instantly rewarding. Here’s how Lurk interpreted our scribblings in the design doc from initial concept to his usual jaw-dropping final polish after the cut, I’m sure nobody’s going to miss the old menu.

The first draft. How much do you love that goat?

Discretely clickable areas worked quite nicely, but we realised that because players had a strict set of filters that they would use while interacting with the Kingdom: Choosing a race, a class and then individual preparations (more on this later). We moved things around in response:

This is honestly the extent of my photoshop skills.

One of the core aspects of the Kingdom is that players choose which buildings to upgrade themselves, some are even only unlocked through quests or in-game special events. You’re not seeing a “complete” Kingdom here, only a selection of buildings – your Kingdom will be slightly different, depending on which abilities, characters and options you prefer… Lurk took our meddling in stride:

And then proceeded to polish it, adding a tangible layer of awesomeness to what was simply raw metagame beforehand:

The book just sort of happened…

14 Responses to “The evolution of a Kingdom”

  1. DukeOFprunes Says:

    Medieval times would’ve been far better if there was more neon signage.

  2. pakoito Says:

    Love it. Can’t wait to pay.

  3. pakoito Says:

    And yes I mean pay for it to play it. Furthermore, signores, I’d pay right now for a beta xD

  4. Γιάννης Says:

    I hate how all westerners think that all “medieval architecture” was limited to western European and Gothic architecture of small towns.

    Why can’t we have something like Arabian or Persian or Byzantine architecture? Persians were especially promiment in building some very interesting places in medieval times, at least until the Mongols came and made the Middle East go far, far behind even crappy Europe (Europe was horrible back then!).

    So, yeah… make it at least a wee bit less typical, eh?

    (just as an example of how much more interesting inspiration from places like Constantinople can be)

  5. dislekcia Says:

    You’re totally right, there are great examples of amazing architecture from a whole host of cultures that we haven’t used. The typical feeling is sort of what we’re parodying (you may or may not have noticed that the elves live in a shanty-town) and we have a few things we’d like to say about modern fantasy. Heck, a lot of our jokes come from responses to our South African cultural melting pot, so we’re totally with you on not being too westernised…

    Mea culpa, we have to leave something for the expansions and sequels? 😉

  6. salejemaster Says:


  7. KnobDoctor Says:

    The book makes it even more awesome!

    But I miss the goat.

  8. pakoito Says:


    What games are exciting you right now?

    Ed: We’re both judges at IGF and been playing a lot of indie games. […] Yes! Super Crate Box is fucking awesome. Desktop Dungeons is another one.

  9. Colm Says:

    That’s frickin sweet. Nice to see the evolution of the art 🙂

  10. Dharlas Says:

    Sweet designing cannot wait until it is incorperated into the game, I cannot wait for the next update!

  11. Bretzel Says:


    Definitely looking forward to this game!

  12. leisy Says:

    wa!!!!it’s very beautiful!!
    I love it!

  13. Ecasi Says:

    It is one of the most interesting games ive ever played with artistic beauty too!!

  14. SportsMan Says:

    That is a great game

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