Malevolence: The Sword of Ahkranox is an action role-playing game from Australian indie developer "Visual Outbreak". The game is a turn-based, grid-based, first-person dungeon crawler inspired by classic 1980s and 1990s first person role-playing games. It was released to open beta on February 3, 2013 for Windows.
Malevolence: The Sword of Ahkranox is the first turn-based RPG to have a truly infinite game world that is both persistent and identical for all players. The engine makes use of a unique form of procedural world generation that bypasses the upper bound limits of data types, using this generation to create an infinite stream of in-game content which is the same for every player, meaning that separate players can find the same landmarks and NPCs.
It has been over nine hundred years since The End of Times, when Jeo-Khofar plunged The Sword of Ahkranox into the magical realm of Kha-Rahim, destroying all of existence. Since that time, The Sword has been left floating in the void, drawing to it all the lost souls of mankind and enfolding them into a world of its own creation. But evil came; slowly at first, then in greater numbers, and The Sword was forced to use all of its mana to create new souls to enter the world and cleanse it of darkness. The chosen Ones, as mortals called them, walked alone in the world with one sole purpose: to rid it of all evil. But The Sword could only sustain one of these souls at a time, and when they eventually fell to the unending hordes of darkness, their magic was released and given back to The Sword to make a new hero. The Blade Clergy, protectors of The Sword and mentors to The Chosen Ones, have waited in the Temple of the Blade for nearly a millennium for each new Chosen One to appear, taking them and learning them in ways of The Sword. But one day, after a hero had died, no new soul came to the Temple. The Blade Clergy feared that the evil had finally won, that The Sword's magic was undone and the world would end, when they heard reports from the town guard that a mysterious wanderer had spontaneously appeared in the center of town. The guards were sent out at once. The Chosen One must be told of their path, their purpose. The Clergy knew not why The Sword didn't place them at The Temple as it always had, but if the hero was not found, all might be lost.
Malevolence: The Sword of Ahkranox is a first-person turn-based action role-playing game. The player controls a chosen one, whom they move through an infinite, 3D rendered, grid-based world. Much of the gameplay's inspiration was taken from early RPG titles such as Eye of the Beholder and Might & Magic, with world generation taking much inspiration from games such as Daggerfall.
The gameplay consists of classic roguelike elements, such as exploration, looting and quest completion to advance the player's character. The loot and quests in the game are generated procedurally as are the environments in which the player explores.
A major part of the game is character development. Since the game is infinite, Malevolence does not employ a standard statistical model, but instead gives the player six core statistics represented as percentages - all which equal a total of 100% at all times. As the player gains in strength, they weaken in magical abilities and speed, and vice versa, thus making stat management an important part of the game.
The development team behind Malevolence has kept an active presence among its fan base, participating in many interviews with sites such as Kotaku and Gamasutra. They also ran a successful KickStarter drive to help fund the project's development, achieving over 500% of their goal amount.
The game has also received much attention from many prominent video game sites such as Gamasutra, RPG Codex and TechZWN.
The game has also been featured twice as part of the Game On Exhibition during its tour of Australia, both in Brisbane and Sydney.