• Designer Notes: Saint Luke – Designing a Hero

    The making of a Saint – the beginnings.
    Late 2009, we take a look at Dark Age and decided it was time for a revision. We embarked on the yearlong project to revise the game. Looking at what we had in front of us and after deciding to launch the Air Caste we wanted something more, Grafter asks “Why can’t we do Luke?” and it was so.

    Like the idea of Bounty Hunters? Thank Luke for that.
    In creating Luke and the overall revision of the forsaken as a whole, went back over our original formula for building the Forsaken. We wanted to find a way to continue to build the forsaken up without losing the strong personal feel of the individual Saints. That in conjunction with the Outcasts being in play now sparked an idea to create some more diversity within the overall human options on the table. This meant making the bounty hunters. So all of you out there who enjoy taking a Bounty Hunter or two in your Outcast or Forsaken list you have Saint Luke to thank for that.

    We wanted to be different with Luke, and knew that in Luke’s backstory he would be fighting against the Fire Caste He would need to have some good combat skills. We had come up with both a solid melee fighter as well as a solid ranged fighter for working designs. While trying to pick which one we would go with it occurred to me we could just do both.

    So we told our concept guy about our idea to have a Saint that can specialize his weapons and asked him to give us some roughs of the idea. We had decided to have a spear of some sorts and a massive Shotgun, well if you consider a shotgun a gun that is (among other more traditional shotgun effects) able to fire grenades. I for one do.

    The Sister/Matriarch of Wrath was picked out of existing concepts that we prepped and ready to go. One down two to go. For the other two we look to the story of Luke and what he is doing. Luke’s story takes him to the wastelands in the east in the volcano and Fire Caste Dragyri ridden mountains. Two things came out of this concept, one Luke would not have much in the way of reinforcements so his troops would have to throw conventional warfare out the window and use guerilla tactics to stay alive, and two they would be fighting in extreme conditions and needed tough equipment that was easy to maintain and be able to fight in close quarters. We wanted to Luke and his elites a very strong tie-in together both visually and mechanically. So we built two units, similarly equipped to his two forms. Both have the same equipment access as he does, represented in their enhanced optics and envirofilters, as well as a tactical tie in with the guerrilla tactics rule. Finally we gave one his spear and the other his gun. Golden. Born are the Arsenal and Stinger.

    The art is getting cleaned up and we make our final comments on Luke’s appearances, in the meantime we are looking at Luke’s attacks and his Special Abilities. We come up with a good way to make two different Units out of one person with his Art of War Special Ability. Mind you this is a first for Dark Age, this is the first time in the game where you determine how a Unit is equipped. We decide on the Mantis for Melee and Dragon for his combat shotgun, made sense right? We write the option for Luke to go either Mantis or Dragon, and regardless of his choice he can still work alone, or depending on his choice he can Take Charge of either the Arsenals or Stingers. About the same time Magpie our lead writer is polishing up the fiction behind Luke and we get another update from our concept guy:

    Luke is nigh complete now, we have his rules, all that’s left is his fiction. For most people familiar with the story of the Saints and the Prevailing Council you know by now the constant friction between the two groups. The Prevailers are in control of Forsaken society and they want it to stay that way, but the Saints are slowly gaining favor amongst the masses, and the Prevailers don’t like that. Most Forsaken people are oblivious to the Prevailing Council’s machinations except Luke. At an early age he saw the Prevailing Council for what it is, after the “disappearance” of his parents he made it his life’s goal to take the Council down. Bordering on Open revolution Luke fights the menaces to Forsaken society while planning the downfall of the Prevailing council. I was very happy with how well our writers captured the intense drama of Luke.

    Saint Luke and his elite troops are available now for purchase from your local gaming store or you can get them online from the CMON Dark Age online store. If your store is interested in carrying Dark Age please have them contact [email protected].

    -Brian 'bj' Kourik

    Saint Luke Concept by David Doust and Brian Kourik
    Saint Luke Design by Georgio Dimitriou, David Doust, And Brian Kourik
    Sculpted by Pedro Fernandez Ramos
    Studio Miniatures painted by James Wappel