In 1522 Malta was a barren rock with little to recommend it.
As the exiled Knights of St John arrived after having been driven out of Rhodes by Suleiman the Magnificent and his Moslem Army, they must have been dispirited by their new surroundings. Gone was the green island where the delightful nectarine, fig and vine grew. Now the principal crop was cotton, stretching across a landscape of dusty yellow sandstone.
Surprisingly though, the quote ‘This Cursed Rock’ was not taken from one of those devout religious warriors as he first set eyes on Malta. Instead it was taken from an adviser to their deadliest adversary, Suleiman the Magnificent, responding to the acts of piracy by the Knights of St John. This was because, far from settling down to a period of peace and rest, the Order had quickly built up the Island to become a painful thorn in his side with their galleys gliding out of the Grand Harbour to attack his shipping and make hostages of his courtiers.
In 1565 the Sultan’s patience with their depredations on his shipping channels in the Mediterranean finally snapped and he gathered together a formidable army to finally put an end to this nuisance. The siege of Malta – the attack on ‘This Cursed Rock’ had finally begun.
This blog is about game design and how a game develops from an idea into reality (hopefully!). That – for me at least – it is a process that can take years with plenty of stops and starts and wrong turns along the way.