BoxFox

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There's a lot of good in life. You just have to look for it.

Kyme's searching for a fresh start in the city of Province. Will he find it among the eccentric residents and their whimsical adventures? Or will he get lost chasing his personal villain, a grand thief capable of stealing the blue from the sky, the voice of a singer, and even the very memory of what he stole, leaving you with nothing but an empty feeling?

Notes From Province is an Open World RPG focused on exploration and meeting people.

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Features​

  • Open world - no dead ends, only new things to see and treasure to find
  • Character driven story - even the battles have a story to tell
  • Crafting, cooking, fishing, dancing, finding a strange rat-loving man living in a hole under your neighbor's house
  • 7 characters - with distinct styles and roles, swap-able mid combat
  • Equipment based customization - abilities and passives come from equipment that can be freely swapped to redefine characters
  • Enemies worth reacting to - each encounter has a plan to crush you unless you spot the weakness and counter
  • Decorate and expand your house - a straight-faced, no nonsense man with rabbit ears will judge your furniture arrangement and award you accordingly
  • NPCs with lives - each villager has their own daily agenda, situational dialog, and a story to tell the more you get to know them

Download​

Get the game for free on Steam or itch.io :)

Need help or want to discuss with other players? Join the Discord server!

Notes From Province
Built using RPG Maker VX Ace

= With Music By =
Darren Curtis
Geoff Moore
jStewart
Kevin MacLeod
Ms Littlefish
Schythuz
Soundray
Subaru
TheBrogrammer

= With BGS By =
Arctura
DWOBoyle

= With Code By =
Cidiomar R. Dias Junior
Fomar0153
Galenmereth
Galv
Hime
IceDragon
Jet
modern algebra
Neonblack
Rokan
Rycochet
Shaz
Venima
V.M of D.T
Woratana
Yanfly
Zalerinian

= With Graphics By =
Ayene
Belzark
Candacis
casper667
Celianna
Chaos Portalt
Charles Hurst
CLOSET Ace
cr dusty
Cronus
EternalShadow
Flaming Teddy Productions
G-Brothers
Haydeos
Indrah
Kalez
KaminagiKo
Kazzador
konoe
Liberty
LightoftheDimVXA
Lunarea
Mack
Makers
Mr.Dai
PentagonBuddy
RYO MIZUKI
silversatyr
soruve
telles0808
TheHarmp
The Infamous Bon Bon
l0velyblue

= Tested By =
Jackie
Mad Dog
Ryan
Taylor
Swathi
Syne
 
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kelarly

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This game looks really promising! I'm a fan of open world adventure games, and I like the mapping style you have. I'll check it out for sure.
 

BoxFox

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I've uploaded a new version! (also @kelarly did you ever try the game?)

Patch Notes v1.0.7​

Fixed two places where players commonly got stuck.

The Grand Thief's sun and moon clues
When working to discover the meaning of the clues, the game forces players to go do something else to trigger the next scene. This caused players who did everything else in the game to get stuck.

There are now 3 ways to progress the story.
  • Complete 5 points of "progress" by doing other things, then chat with the party 3 times on the topic
  • Complete 10 points of "progress" by doing other things, and ignore the party chat
  • Find the sun and moon on your own, then talk to the harpy to trigger a bonus scene
After completing any of these, Cyl will be outside Kyme's house with drugs.

The magic show
Watching the magic show takes players to a magical forest, which you can't leave without beating a boss. Players who were unable to beat the boss ended up stuck in the forest.

After losing to the boss, there is now extra dialog guiding players back to the healing spring within the forest. Additionally, the spring now fully heals the party (HP/MP/revive) instead of just HP.

When retrying the battle, there is now an option to let Emith give an inspirational speech which crushes enemy morale and drops their HP in half. It also adds +75 defense buff to the party and -75 damage buff to enemies.
 

Lady_JJ

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First, let me say I am so very much enjoying playing this game. I can't say I'll be able to complete everything for various reasons, not the least of which, there's just so much! :)

I love how the battles are structured. Each area has a few easy, visible targets with just enough of the spells/traits to get you ready to take on the mini-boss of that area. And these small-fry visible targets will respawn so it's the player's choice whether to grind or avoid. Most mini-bosses don't give you a 'Game Over' so if you don't succeed on your first try you can escape and try again. And these mini-bosses get harder and harder. I haven't come across one boss with the same set of skills / traits as a previous boss. The battles focus on strategy, not 900 zillion HP's of just hack'n'slash. You need the right battlers with the right skills and the right equipment, and the developer has provided them for you.

Buttons, switches, jumping, you name it. You'll need to plan your moves to reach those better treasure chests. And, like the battles, each new puzzle area gives you a little preview of what you need to do. No wall of text tutorials. These little previews best exemplify the 'show me, don't tell me' philosophy of teaching. I loved the jumping and rafting, the buttons and switches, rock pushing/pulling, they're all there.

QTE's are not my favorite. I just don't have the reflexes for them. Most of these mini-games have 4 achievement levels/prizes and I can get the first 3, so I'm happy with that. Getting the 4th achievement will get you a better prize but it doesn't lock you out of the main game story at all. So no soft locks if your brain and fingers just don't work as quickly as they once did.

The characters are funny and endearing. There's some very humorous banter amongst all of them, but, make no mistake, this is not a visual novel. Just enough dialogue to remind you of what your next goal is and, when the dialogue does happen, it's kept short and humorous. This is a very upbeat game. There is also a very simple quest log that helps you to keep track of both main progression quests and optional side quests/ achievements.

Gold and items aren't easy to come by. Some of the ordinary items like bread, as well as some ordinary equipment, are freely dropped by the enemies, but you'll always have to budget your gold when shopping. The best equipment can be crafted, but crafting materials are hard to come by, so, again, you'll need to prioritize your party's needs.

So far there is only one town in this map, so you'll never travel far from home. That said, there are so many forests, caves and other dungeons both in town and just outside of town, that you'll think you're traveling all over a continent. I really like the compactness of this world.

And who doesn't love an arena? Compete in the arena and work your way from Level F to Level A. Test your strength. But you'll also have to test your wits to advance. Brute strength alone won't advance you.

As I said, I haven't finished. I'm actually stuck at a battle and I'd like to know if this is a mandatory battle or an optional battle.

I only have two entries under Focus: Find the Grand Thief and Find Another First Born. I am at my, I think, third battle with the Grim Reaper and things aren't going well. I can get him 'in the red' but I can't finish him. Do I need best the Grim Reaper to continue with the main story or should I be looking elsewhere to move the story along? I still don't have the optional Find and report villagers affected by the Grand Thief checked off. The other unfinished Extra I have is Find the third treasure map. I only have 3 of the 4 pieces of that map.
I'm going to scour the town again, both in day and in night, searching for a townsperson who has fallen prey to the thief. I have the two easy ones, the mute singer and Sita who can't remember what was stolen (probably her sense of humor). But if you could offer me a more concrete hint as to where to head from here, I'd really be grateful.

Edit-And, just like that, I found the First Born. :)

Whether I'm able to finish the game or not, I have certainly enjoyed playing this game immensely.
 
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Kokoro Hane

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I just started a game on this one and find it to be really charming! The NPCs have personality and I like how there's quests throughout and how the battles DO add to the story! Also, can I say that the menu is so well made? All the sprites look so lively!
 

BoxFox

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Thanks @Lady_JJ and @Kokoro Hane! Glad you've enjoyed the game so far :LZSsmile:

As I said, I haven't finished. I'm actually stuck at a battle and I'd like to know if this is a mandatory battle or an optional battle.

I only have two entries under Focus: Find the Grand Thief and Find Another First Born. I am at my, I think, third battle with the Grim Reaper and things aren't going well. I can get him 'in the red' but I can't finish him. Do I need best the Grim Reaper to continue with the main story or should I be looking elsewhere to move the story along? I still don't have the optional Find and report villagers affected by the Grand Thief checked off. The other unfinished Extra I have is Find the third treasure map. I only have 3 of the 4 pieces of that map.
I'm going to scour the town again, both in day and in night, searching for a townsperson who has fallen prey to the thief. I have the two easy ones, the mute singer and Sita who can't remember what was stolen (probably her sense of humor). But if you could offer me a more concrete hint as to where to head from here, I'd really be grateful.

Edit-And, just like that, I found the First Born. :)
The Grim Reaper is a totally optional battle. Don't worry if you can't beat it.

To find the remaining villager affected by the Grand Thief, try asking people who hang out in the harbor. They only share their dialog once, so you may have already asked and missed it. If that's the case, try checking the inn :LZScool:
 

Kokoro Hane

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I have a question -- I found a rope, and evidently it is to use to get to hard to reach places. How do I use it? Or does someone need to teach me first?
 

Lady_JJ

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I have a question -- I found a rope, and evidently it is to use to get to hard to reach places. How do I use it? Or does someone need to teach me first?
Check inside the houses.

I've found the Grand Thief, of course he got away, and beat the white haired soldier in the tournament. On my way now to search for some sun stones, I think? In the meantime, can @BoxFox or someone else explain to me how the light bending puzzles work? Getting the light from one crystal to another started off easy, but I'm at a loss as to how it's done when one color has to intersect another...
 

BoxFox

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The purple light needs to connect to the purple crystal, and the green to the green crystal. The purple light will always block the green light if they intersect.

Some puzzles have both colored lights, but only a green crystal to connect to. For those, you just have to get the green to connect without the purple blocking the way.
 

Lady_JJ

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This is the one I'm stuck on. I don't even see a second green to connect to.

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To be truthful, unless the 9th Prickly Pear is in that chest, I can just leave it.

2nd question-In the cave with the dynamite, entrance on the same map as the entrance to the light bending puzzle cave above, is it possible to find a route that will reach all chests with just the 2 sticks of dynamite, or should I just prioritize and take what I need/want the most?

Thanks for all your help. :)

Edit-Got 9 prickly pears. I reached the end of the game. Such an awesome game. Notice I didn't say I 'finished' the game because there's so much left to do. I'm on a mission to complete all those extra boss battles. I was finally able to win the 2nd gauntlet after many, many tries, then completed the 3rd gauntlet on the first try. Now if I could just best Ryoma to get that Letter of Recommendation. :) Then I suppose I'll need to go back to that Grim Reaper. Maybe even decorate my expanded home.

I just really want to thank you for making this excellent game. I've had so much fun playing it. And such a beautiful story. You are very talented.
 
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BoxFox

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This is the one I'm stuck on. I don't even see a second green to connect to.

View attachment 227857

To be truthful, unless the 9th Prickly Pear is in that chest, I can just leave it.
Here's a hint if you haven't figured this one out yet
You already have the light bent correctly. The green light needs to hit the crystal, but the purple one is in the way. The puzzle is solved by doing something to block the purple light.

Jump in the center so the player character blocks the light.

2nd question-In the cave with the dynamite, entrance on the same map as the entrance to the light bending puzzle cave above, is it possible to find a route that will reach all chests with just the 2 sticks of dynamite, or should I just prioritize and take what I need/want the most?
You can reach every chest, but not in a single route. You can reset the room by taking more dynamite, then use a different route to get new chests, and repeat.

Edit-Got 9 prickly pears. I reached the end of the game. Such an awesome game. Notice I didn't say I 'finished' the game because there's so much left to do. I'm on a mission to complete all those extra boss battles. I was finally able to win the 2nd gauntlet after many, many tries, then completed the 3rd gauntlet on the first try. Now if I could just best Ryoma to get that Letter of Recommendation. :) Then I suppose I'll need to go back to that Grim Reaper. Maybe even decorate my expanded home.

I just really want to thank you for making this excellent game. I've had so much fun playing it. And such a beautiful story. You are very talented.
Thanks so much for the feedback and kind words! I'm glad you got to play and enjoy. This is why I make games :)
 

Lady_JJ

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Here's a hint if you haven't figured this one out yet
You already have the light bent correctly. The green light needs to hit the crystal, but the purple one is in the way. The puzzle is solved by doing something to block the purple light.

Jump in the center so the player character blocks the light.


You can reach every chest, but not in a single route. You can reset the room by taking more dynamite, then use a different route to get new chests, and repeat.


Thanks so much for the feedback and kind words! I'm glad you got to play and enjoy. This is why I make games :)
Love that you put the hint and the solution in separate spoilers. I was able to solve it using just the hint. :)

The dynamite room? I would have never figured that one out. I actually tried taking the sticks, not using them, and then re-entering, thinking I could get more, but the quantity must be capped at 2. I certainly missed a vital step in there. Getting through the 3 blockades was a little tricky, but I did eventually 'jump' and got behind the solution.

Every word of praise is well earned.
 

Firefly130984

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You know it is funny when you read the note "I should come back at night" at the fisher's house and it is night...
 

BoxFox

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If it's night, she should be at her house. She's probably walking home on another map somewhere :LZSskeptic:
 

Firefly130984

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Most likely I have to do other things first, just entered the shopping district...
 

Artisticdog

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this game looks amazing, the whole arena thing and open world seems almost impossible with rpg maker vx ace. I can barely code my game dogquest , do you think you have some time for help? Because this is my first game I’m making. But anyways you game looks great.
 

BoxFox

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I sent you a direct message. Feel free to ask more specific questions that way.
 
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Lunalongs99

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Just made this account so that i could ask ya for help.

Im stuck at the battle with the skeleton where he takes only 1 damage. Can you guide me as to how to beat him?
 

BoxFox

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Sita and Rick (with a dagger) are good party members for that battle. They are able to hit multiple times a turn. Also the Bee Stinger accessory.

Conditions are good too. Bleed, burn, poison. Anything that causes an extra tick of damage.

To defend against the skeleton's attacks, watch for which party members are bleeding. His strategy is to make everyone bleed, so those who aren't already will be the next attack targets.
 

WhiteRice369

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Very nice game, the character dialogue and stories are exceptional. There were some very funny parts that had me laughing, as well as very thought provoking dialogue that still has me thinking.

The combat is challenging and enjoyable and the variety of puzzles and mini games is great.

The main song that plays at the menu and your home map, and the song that plays in the business district are bangers.

The only thing I'm not a huge fan of is the tile set seems generic, even though you did a great job with the maps being good size and having lots of details on each map.

Thanks for making your game, I really enjoyed it!
 

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