Announcing Project GRIMDARK, an open-world text game

Hello, all.

This is about my first time posting here. I stumbled upon Quest quite some time ago. Enjoying computer programming as a hobby, I've always been inspired to design video games, but as I can't make the assets alone at the level of quality I want, I have been unable to. But then I found Quest, and suddenly a path was open to me I hadn't considered. A text-based game. I've always felt I had the creativity to create worlds and concepts. I've always liked writing. A text-based game seemed like a great solution to at least get some ideas out there.

For a while now, I've been working on an open-world text adventure set in a dark fantasy world. For now, I'll refer to this project as Project GRIMDARK.

World and Setting

The game is high fantasy, set in a world with several dominant races, some human-like and some not, each with their own history and culture. With several continents housing different countries and cultures, there is much variety to be had.

As the working title implies, the tone of this game will be bleak. The state of the world during the time the game is set isn't the most peaceful. A war has just ended, and there is uneasy political tension between many nations in the world. People are mistrustful of foreigners or those of a different race. Crime is on the rise. People being sold into slavery, widespread violence, deviant aristocracy, The worst of humanity is on display.

The kind of person in this world you want to be, a saint or a devil, or something in between, is up to you.


The game is an open-world adventure. Think something along the lines of The Elder Scrolls. But being a text game, the world and what you can do in it can be a bit more nuanced.

Start it up and dive in. The entire world is immediately yours to play in, with multiple continents and plenty of locations to visit and things to do. You'll be able to feel the difference from one place to the next, from the peaceful, gorgeous countryside of an isolated nation, to the dangerous, filthy streets of an overcrowded city. There are five playable races to choose from, with your chosen race impacting certain aspects of the game (such as your combat abilities, how you are treated by others, what equipment you can use, etc.).

To drive the game along, you will have a Main Quest that will act as your primary objective and tell an involved, but mostly linear story. You can choose from the main quest specific to your character's chosen race, the generic main quest available to all races, or choose to have no main quest and roam the world freely.

Side Quests on the other hand; the world will be full of a host of characters to interact with, from which you can take side quests, which act as mini-stories or plotlines. These quests can have different outcomes based on your decisions and actions, and can affect future quests or events in certain parts of the world.

The world will truly feel alive with its own time and date system in place, with many inhabitants of the world following their own schedules. You'll be able to take in the sights of world locations through the game's changing descriptions from dank, dreary morning to bright, sweltering day to dark, moon-lighted night. Vendors stock will change from day to day. Random events will keep you on your toes, and can be great opportunities or unexpected threats. A reputation system will also be in place, giving weight to how you interact with many different factions the world will contain.

While the main attraction of the game will be me trying my writing chops by attempting to draw you into this world, the game will nonetheless sport a robust combat system, with several stats to fine-tune your combat style, equipment that changes how you fight, and combat skills and magic spells to learn. The many enemies you will encounter will have different strengths, weaknesses and behavior, so every fight will feel unique.

If the stories or the combat aren't to your fancy, there will be a number of side activities you can spend your time with, such as gathering materials and crafting goods, becoming a mercenary and taking on jobs, farming and tending to animals, or becoming a merchant or market peddler.

All this, powered by Quest

The game is being developed in and can be played with Quest, but will ditch the default graphical scheme. I'm planning on building a completely custom UI from HTML and CSS. The player will be able to play by typing commands as well as using the GUI to interact with the world.

I'm making extensive use of the more advanced features of Quest. The game will dynamically add objects to the game like items and enemies, loaded from a JSON file that stores their data. Timers and turn scripts will be mainly responsible for making sure all the dynamic systems are operational.

If this sounds insanely ambitious, that's because it is, but I'm determined to make this a reality, make the most of Quest and see just how much it's capable of. If the effort I put into this announcement post isn't any indication, I'm serious about this project.

It's still very, very early in development, so I don't have anything that's worth showing off yet. However, I'm eager to get this in people's hands to see what they think, so I am planning to release what would basically be a small proof-of-concept demo in the near future, letting you play in a condensed, one-off location, with several of the game's systems in working order. This is intended to give you a taste of what the full game might be like, since developing that entire world will take time.

Please be excited!

Sounds like a MAJOR story to say the least!!!
I've seen stories like this in graphic games, but not for text.
First idea...
Start with one country, and one race (but program it so that everything that could change is a variable or attribute that would be ease to change) and one main story line. and release that as a teaser. If you get enough feedback, go from there...

if you want any ideas on things (I too am slowly trying to learn to code/program a TES-ambition-level type of RPG), I've tried to put them together in a single location (its been on hiatus for a long time, but I've done and documented more ideas for my own slow work, just haven't created a new thread to post all my new/current ideas/documentation/research/brainstorming/ideas/etc yet):

(I love RPGs, and I've played a lot of them, so I've been trying to put all the various ideas from all of them and also my own, into a single location, for anyone to use)

Good luck with your open world! It's A LOT of hard work and a lot of tedious backpeddling! Prepare yourself!


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