PhD Candidate
Rhetorics, Communication,
and Information Design

Clemson University

Eidolon One

Eidolon One was something of an experimental passion project in 2013 that combined a love of old JRPGs with fond memories of playing games on dialup Bulletin-board systems (BBS) in the early 1990s, before the world-wide web took over everything. It was meant to simulate old ANSI graphics, with a few touch-ups, and relies almost exclusively on keyboard input (so no tablets or phones). It also has a limited palette of 24 colors, with a few exceptions to facilitate lighting simulations. Like many other games I've made, this one is a conglomerate of HTML, CSS, Javascript, and PHP.

There are a few reasons why development stopped on this project. Foremost, it simply became overwhelming: everything in the game required drawing pixel by pixel in an editor that was also developed solely for this game, and nothing was recycled or reused with the exception of a few minor pieces of background. If I had to guess, I would say I probably spent over 200 hours doing the artwork alone, and it wasn't realistic for a single person to do everything needed in a reasonable amount of time. Additionally, the statistics system was a nightmare: it has strength, charisma, and all the normal stats in this genre of game, but also fine details like blood pressure, drug addiction, and so on. I meant for the game to be an "anything can happen or be done" experience, but even in sandbox games today, that's not truly the case: there are careful limits placed on what a player can or cannot do, and the reason for this is perfectly sound: you simply can't. program. everything.

I'm putting this here because despite its unfinished quality, it's still a testament to a lot of detailed work. If there's ever enough interest in making such a game from others, and they would like to collaborate, I'd be more than happy to dig up my bag of tricks that was spent on this monster. Until then, enjoy what is left in shambles. Click the screenshot below to try it out.