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N-Fusion and 505's Ember is Totally Going to be the Next Ultima

Posted by Jessica Fisher on March 29th, 2015

Recently, I was invited to check out N-Fusion and 505's upcoming RPG title, Ember. Set in the land of Domus, you'll be embroiled in a rich story with over 70 quests, a ridiculously expansive skill tree, and gorgeous landscapes. You play as aLightbringer who is trying to save the embers - which the world covets to the point of war, of course.Jeff Birns, CEO of N-fusion, walked me though his work and it was obvious that this was truly a labor of love. And he was happy to answer a few questions on his beloved game.

Let's Talk About Ember, from N-Fusion Interactive

Posted by Rob Rich on October 14th, 2014

I’d like to think that we’re all familiar with N-Fusion Interactive, but for those of you who aren’t, I imagine you’ve at least heard of some of the games they've been involved with: Space Noir, Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded, and Deus Ex: The Fall to name a few. The studio has done some pretty impressive work on iOS over the years, and now they’re getting ready to release the RPG they’ve always wanted to make.

The world of Ember seems like a fascinating one. The game is titles after the world's most valuable natural resource, which is used for all sorts of things from providing energy to a city to being set in jewelry. What’s more, it has intelligence. The larger the chunk of Ember, the smarter it is, to the point that you might find yourself squaring off against some rather (understandably) hostile giant crystals.

Ember also plays into your story, not just the over-arching story of the world. Throughout the game you’ll acquire Ember shards, which you can then decide to sell off for a tidy profit or set free - much like freeing or harvesting a Little Sister when you stop and think about it. Creepy.

Ember can best be compared to PC classics like Ultima and Baldur’s Gate. It uses a top-down isometric perspective, sure, but the similarities go a bit further than that. The world is also incredibly large, and will never need to load when traveling from one area to another. It has day/night cycles, weather, multiple homes to own, NPCs have their own schedules and behaviors that they keep to, and even the animals interact with each other (i.e. cats chase mice, wolves hunt deer, etc) on their own.

Items are also liberally sprinkled throughout the world (think just about anything Elder Scrolls) and all of them can be picked up. Or dropped, of course. There’s also a crafting system, so you’ll be able to turn ore you’ve mined into a new weapon or mix potions using materials gathered from the woods. And yes, there are readable books.

Combat is in real time, but you can pause the action at any point while you plan your tactics and activate skills. And speaking of skills, they’re tied to your equipment as opposed to being in some sort of tree. The reasoning behind this is simple: to prevent players from getting “stuck” playing a class they decide they don’t like. If you’re 12 hours in (the game touts 30 hours of gameplay, 180 quests, innumerable sidequests, etc) and decide focusing on melee combat isn’t doing it for you, it’ll be easy to start playing around with fireballs and lighting bolts instead. And of course when you put on new gear and equip new weapons they’ll all show up on your character.

There’s no official release date for Ember yet, but it’s coming along nicely and looks to be close to completion based on the build I was shown. Pricing is also still up in the air, but it’s definitely going to be a premium title - no ads, timers, etc. At the moment it’s being designed for the iPad, but I’ve been told there’s a chance we may see a separate iPhone version as well. Either way I can’t wait to get my hands on it.

Ember Update Adds New Annotation Tools Through In-App Purchase, Also Adds Auto-Import for Camera Roll

Posted by Andrew Stevens on January 28th, 2014
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Ember - Capture, Organize and Share lets users leave their mark on images with new annotation tools that can be downloaded through an in-app purchase for $4.99. This gives users access to Smart Drawing, Text, Blur, and Pixelate on their iOS devices. Auto-Import has also been added and is available through in-app purchase for $0.99. It automatically detects screenshots on a user's camera roll, adds them to their library, and syncs through iCloud to their other devices.

Ember Lets Users Take Images and Screenshots and Organize Them into Groups, Automatically Syncs with Mac Version

Posted by Andrew Stevens on December 4th, 2013
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Ember - Capture, Organize and Share allows users to take images or screenshots and have them automatically sync with Ember for Mac through iCloud. The app allows users to collect these images and organize them into groups to keep track of them. Users can also annotate with Ember for Mac and later access it on their iPhone or iPad and share their images with friends through email, AirDrop, and other services and social media.

Campfire developers 37signals acquires Ember, changes its name and makes it free

Posted by Kyle Flanigan on July 28th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

Campfire, the project collaboration application with real time chat designed for private groups where members can share files, text, code and more (think of it as a more powerful IRC client), can now be found on the App Store as an official application by 37signals due to a takeover of Ember, the third-party application developer of Campfire. Ember, as it was then known, was originally priced at $9.99, but developers 37signals saw an opportunity which allowed them to "work out a deal [with Ember and make] a few changes to the app" according to the official blog. As of July 26th, the application has rebranded and re-released with a new price tag: rather, no price tag at all. It's free to download from the iTunes App Store.

Although the application itself is free, a Campfire account is not. The basic package allows up to 12 chatters and 1GB of storage for $12 a month, and for $24 a month you can upgrade that to 25 chatters, 3GB of storage as well as 500 conference call minutes and enhanced security over the Basic package. A free 30-day trial is available on all accounts.

37signals continues to become a prominent player in the business network, having released other popular applications and clients that allow more professional social networking to take place. Basecamp, Highrise and Backpack all have one thing in common: their developer is Campfire creator 37signals. You can download the free Campfire application by clicking the link below, which will redirect you to iTunes.

[Thanks to IntoMobile for reporting this.]