Sunday, December 30, 2012

Prelude / Teaser coming out soon

I intend to keep my word, about the Prelude, at least, and release it somewhere in the beginning of January. As you can see from the word count in the sidebar, the Prelude is only a small part of the work. Yet, polishing it is incredibly tedious work. x.x

So that's what I've been working on recently. I can't wait to start making changes to Chapter 1 and finish it, too.

I'm left with the task of testing everything in the Prelude (personally first), more polishing, and deciding how to modify the player classes without ruining anything. The idea is to make bards more useful, since I like singing and stuff, but bards can't use magic in my settings. So I set them to automatically receive some sneak attack feats, but not as much as rogues. I also gave rogues some unfair assassin feats, which I think I'll remove. This is not supposed to be power gaming. I guess I should just focus on bards, since I've taken away their spells.

Of course, anyone else who plays the module will also be testing it, want it or not. But I have to correct the mistakes I find, at least.

Happy New Year. :P

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Week 3 of December

Normally, I'm not glad to have to work on something I used to consider done... I'm in a hurry to finish the first bigger module, but I asked for help in making Chapter 1 more interesting and Thirdpres delivered some new content, which will be an improvement. It will take PC at least to level 2 so that she isn't quite as useless in fights next to Sir Brash, who will be level 5. These changes might make Chapter 1 worth playing on its own.

I'm concerned how fast I will manage to finish Chapter 2, which still seems like a lot of work. So maybe chapters 1 and 2 will be published separately after all, if I finish up C1 faster than C2.

I promised three romances early in the series, but there is only one in C1, although you will meet all three characters... And when I mentioned sexual encounters, most of them happen in C2. And most of the twists and important choices happen even later.

I'm concerned with whether people will still be interested in playing and believe me that there is more to come. How do they feel about a module series with 6-7 smaller modules?

But how much mess is it to always talk about chapters 1 and 2 together because they are stuffed in the same module? I get less panicky when I cut the work up and feel like parts of it are complete.

I guess I have until release date to think about it, whenever that is. I'm also eager to send out the first part of the module so you can play it, but my deadlines... I always feel like I'm lying.

I'm hopefully not lying about the Prelude. I need to finish it today or tomorrow, then have it proofread and tested, which I assume will take several more days, and then if the moderators on NWVault work around New Year, it will be out. :D

Added to the Prelude yesterday - arrange a mini prison break.

The Prelude will take an hour or so to play, depends on how fast you read and whether you decide to skip the glowing red, marked door (don't?). I worked in a custom system that hopefully stores your variables for the next module and exports your character automatically. I mean, I tested it, but what do I know. It's recommended that you save this character for later use, to skip introductory dialogs in which you have to tell the game what choices you made.

One of the most important things you will get to say in the Prelude is whether the girl is a virgin. I won't force you to play one, but I think it's better that way. If there's going to be a unicorn quest which Thirdpres suggested for C1, it's better to be a virgin.

P.S. We survived.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Week 2 of December

This week went in working on the conversations.

Thirdpres wrote a bunch of new sexy encounters, which I plan to use, one way or another, in the Demonheart modules. Inspired by that, I finished some talks, too. They are all mixed works now.

I'm adding the option to be a virgin. I thought it was out of the question, because I'd have to write 2 versions of each sexy talk, but due to a recent change of plans... and talks... it's allowed and encouraged. *evil smirk*

I need to finish that prelude soon. It will be short, just to throw you into the mess, but you will be able to make a few important choices (virgin, meeting Thayn or not, optionally learning some details about a certain event).

And who has been voting for Sir Brash? It's a conspiracy!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Week 1 of December

I regret that I didn't start using custom tilesets earlier. I wanted to concentrate on what happens, not waste time beautifying areas, but that is the easiest work and a nice change from writing or scripting. There are at least three awesome custom forest tilesets and even more of other kinds, but my forests are done the old-fashioned way.

This is a beautiful modification by Helvene that saves my areas made with the rural tileset.

"You shall not pass!"
It's also another example of testing gone wrong, because I used the level 1 character it automatically chooses when I run the module from the toolset. I was too occupied with getting the talks to trigger when they should and the fight to start. I later weakened the demonspawn and tried to make it impossible to win the battle without participating. Adjusting the difficulty is tricky when you have optional companions.

I'm thinking there should only be Game Over if your team dies in boss fights or heart-related fights or after attacking an invincible demon. You might have to save up all your resources for the important fights (the ones that are possible to win). So don't drink potions when you're fighting the mushrooms.

The random scar and limp system after death will be there in all fights. It applies Dex, Str or Charisma penalties. Maybe it should apply a movement speed decrease instead of a Dex penalty, but that would be tough because you might have to go a long way without getting cured. You can heal badly injured arms and legs with special potions or maybe by resting (haven't worked that in yet), but the facial scars remain. You can imagine them however you want, or reload if you don't want them, and some NPCs will comment on them.