Solasta: Crown of the Magister is a new tactical RPG announced today by Tactical Adventures, a Paris-based developer launched last year by Amplitude Studios co-founder Mathieu Girard. It aims "to bring the true tabletop roleplaying experience to videogames," Girard said in the debut development diary, which also features some brief but very promising clips of pre-alpha gameplay footage.
Solasta appears to be a game in the vein of Dungeons & Dragons, which Girard references in the video. Players will create a party of four adventurers of races and classes, and then guide them through various different realms on a quest for treasure and experience.
But its big hook is verticality: The game world is three-dimensional rather than "a series of flat maps," which along with adding depth to combat also promises to enable exploration "by climbing walls, flying, teleporting, crawling through tunnels, finding secret passages, or falling through unstable ground."
"Additionally, we have added new features such as light, verticality, team-based adventure, dice rolls, etc," Girard said. "We are using the actual rulesets from tabletop games to finally bridge the gap between pen and paper and videogames."
With all due respect to Girard, Tactical Adventures isn't exactly the first studio to take a seat at that table—BioWare did it (and Larian is doing it) with Baldur's Gate, Bloodlines 2 is a World of Darkness game, and Fallout was originally a GURPS game—but that's a relatively minor quibble. Solasta is still early in development and the basic setup isn't going to win any awards for originality, but a proper tabletop RPG experience on PC will always be my jam, and even at this stage I think it's worth keeping an eye on.
A Kickstarter to support Solasta is coming soon, and the developers say that there will be a demo, although it's not clear whether it will be released as part of the crowdfunding campaign or at some point after. For now, you can find out more about what's happening at solasta-game.com.