|Posted by Chris Crooks on December 1, 2013 at 7:20 PM|
The final month of the year is upon us, and a flurry of development is in progress, with an overall goal to make the game pitchable to publishers by January. As many of you have correctly observed, dropping expectant gamers into the middle of an experience with no tutorial and little instruction is a significant barrier to entry, and so I'm currently developing four in-game tutorials that will slowly introduce the myriad concepts of this game in small, easy-to-digest sections, peppered throughout with essential advice from Gaius and Lydia. It was always our aim to do this, but getting the prototype to actually run at all had been our primary concern. Now we are trying to add the accessibility this game needs to reach a wider audience. As always, your ideas, suggestions, complaints, and feedback are appreciated and solicited. I will be posting the update with the first tutorial soon, which I have already finished.
Furthermore, there is going to be intense playtesting and debugging as we try to polish this thing up to respectability. I'm going to revamp and spruce up the battle system, as well as iron out the many obnoxious glitches that seem to plague the visitor/quest system and market. If we have time for additional content, some more narrative elements will be added as well as a random element to surveyed land, with a possibility of finding supply caches, magical sites, or even squatters who must be driven off. I also want to add the ability to collect firewood directly from forests as opposed to the time-consuming chopping of timber which is fine but hardly the only realistic option. The amount of firewood gathered will be randomized based on a Survival roll, but the time-saving aspect of not having to spend more actions chopping it up should be handy during those hard winters. As a little more icing on the cake I'm going to attempt to add a bit of music here and there if I find time to actually write it. I will likely be posting some of my prototypes on piano regardless, so you can get a flavor of what I'm going for musically.
As a final noteworthy goal for all you patient rogues who are alarmed at the lack of site activity, it is our mission to publish two updates a week - one related to the FreeHolder prototype and how it is progressing, including a possible update of the prototype itself, and a second, content-based update that will vary but should give you more information on how our mind-gears are turning. It may be game reviews, or a podcast, or a piece of music, but whatever it is, you should weekly have a little something to get your fix. I've written two game reviews already and will most likely be publishing them today or tomorrow.
Thank you all who keep an eye on this site and who wish us well in our journey of game development. It's an exciting time in an exciting field and I feel priveleged just to be able to participate. Talk to you soon!