New Indie RPG Lets NPCs Really Get Into Character
UTICA, New York, Oct. 29, 2007. Fancy a game where the Non-Player Characters seem to think they’re real, and that their lives and stories matter too? Independent developer Laurion Studio has announced the release of its new Parhedros fantasy role-playing game for the PC, which uses advanced AI techniques, as well as literary techniques drawn from posthumanist theory and hyperfiction, for NPC dialog and story-line development.

“We’re very excited about this game, since it gave us a chance to experiment with some styles of gameplay that you just don’t see in commercial RPGs,” said developer David Van Meter. “In particular, we wanted to really push the envelope with the NPCs. We wanted characters that you can really befriend, or grow to loathe; characters who love to tell their own stories and thus subtly nudge the player’s story in new directions. We’re proud of the fact that a lot of our testers told us they got totally immersed in the dialog, to the point where several forgot at times they weren’t talking on-line to a real person.”

Laurion bills Parhedros as a single-player, 3D dungeon-crawl that looks and feels more than a little rogue-like. Besides its novel dialog and story-advancement interface, the game features random dungeons so that no two games are the same, a magic system that emphasizes the summoning of familiars, and a tactical combat system that stresses good maneuver and sound unit mixes. Players can play as a number of fairy-themed races, ranging from Satyrs and Glaistigs to Centaurs and Spider-Folk, and even as Valkyrja. Laurion has released Parhedros as shareware, and the game can be downloaded for free at the company’s website at www.parhedros.com.

ABOUT LAURION STUDIO:
Laurion Studio is a family-owned and operated business that we started in 1989. We publish entertainment software under the Laurion Studio label, and numismatic reference books under the Laurion Publishing imprint. Past entertainment titles include the Risqué Renee series of casual casino games, released in 1999 for the PC.

ABOUT DAVID VAN METER:
David Van Meter is the principal creative force behind Laurion Studio. Dave holds a Ph.D. in History from Boston University, where he wrote his dissertation on Carolingian and Capetian-era political eschatologies. In addition to developing several computer game titles for the PC, Dave has published scholarly articles and a book on medieval history, is a widely-cited authority on Marian apparitions and Catholic apocalypticism around the year 2000, and has written numerous books on collecting ancient Roman and Greek coins. A copy of Dave’s c.v. may be found on-line at: http://www.parhedros.com/cv_dvm.html
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Game: Parhedros: The Tunnels of Sethir (PC)
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