Sunday, December 1, 2013

Progress on Chapter 2

When Chapter 1 was released, I said I didn't know when the next one was going to be finished, but some people still asked for an estimated time, so I said "this year". Along the way, I made the module a little more complicated than I initially meant it to be - there used to be a time when I meant to release it merged with Chapter 1 and it was supposed to be very short. Well, it's still kind of short, but with some alternate paths that have proven time-consuming to implement. Also, I wasn't counting on the possibility of having a few months of very slow progress (which happened this summer) and playing other games.

Around the middle of October, I decided to try to finish the "main plot" (if it can be called that) by the end of November, and then test and bugfix the module and finish everything else in December.

And the results... well, I kind of knew I was lying to myself, so I'm not disappointed. I actually worked on the module almost every day, when I wasn't sidetracking by developing some handy tool related to proofreading NWN modules. (If those tools were 100% neat, I'd publish them, too, but they are only good enough for me.)

The module isn't fully functional, but I was able to begin the first ceremonial testing, starting at the beginning and trying to get to the end, or as far as possible, since I didn't make an end. :D

So, when will it be finished? Depends how much I slave away on it. :) End of December or end of January, or who knows.

Behold the spawn of hell and my decent black armor. :P

I can't wait to get to Chapter 3... All that is left to do for Chapter 2 can be categorized as "unpleasant tasks" - finish some conversations that I started and then lost inspiration, or something that connects two parts of the module but isn't very fun to make, or was planned a long time ago but I have been avoiding it... It's a lot of work.

I finally printed out a plan for the entire series' plot. There used to be a murky part around the middle, where I planned to add some characters and events, but I saw no way to connect everything together. As you can guess, that part is out. There should be 4 chapters in total.

Testing during development. This might change a little.

Regarding Brash's reaction to the demonheart girl and the influence/approval system, there has been a change. I decided not to trust the variable tracking system from Chapter 1 *that* much, so there will always be a possibility to keep Brash as an ally, unless you set him on fire earlier. But what you'll have to do in order to keep him depends on those variables and, in one case, your talking skills. There are still three and a half different ways he can act when you come face to face with each other... Yep, that's too many possibilities for that guy, whom around 50% people will just off the first chance they get, but that content is finished...

I didn't want Brash to be a fluffy carebear. Some people - or their demonheart girls - despise him or are just indifferent, and Brash wouldn't react nicely to that. But the variable tracking system can't really read your mind, so what if I'm wrong? You will be given an opportunity to set things right. And if you messed it up *that* much... then sorry, guess he just hates you. :D

I still need to sort out what happens with Raze and Arana and how they can be romanced. Sure, there are many conversations with them already, but they aren't romance-specific. It kinda sucks that another romance interest already had sex with the girl, so the others are at a disadvantage. If they act quickly, they are shallow or uncaring like him. If they don't act, the girl can go around the whole harbor. Yep, btw, most of the romance interests here will not appreciate you sleeping around.

As for the adult content poll, the encounters written/planned for Chapter 2 will be there, but I'm not sure how much of it there is going to be in the later parts. Things have to make sense. I don't like the idea of a world of frustrated horndogs who were only waiting for the demonheart girl because other women don't exist. Or solving every quest with sex. Seriously?

Of course, the main characters will get their share, some sooner than others.