kimo

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Re: Your ideas for game changes @Reinarc

Idea 1: All allies and enemies are hit with Expose All, causing 225% increased damage that cannot be removed by defending.
Pros: Increases strategy (you want to proc Overload under the right conditions, such as when the enemy is weakened or out of mana or when you're able to heal easily). I'm even considering allowing the enemy to manipulate the gauge in this scenario.
Cons: Could be frustrating because 225% damage could result in one shots on player characters.
This con is huge and I hate when one-shot damages are part of a game. Otherwise, the idea is okay.
Idea 2: Enemies receive randomized debuff called "reveals" (throwback to original term). These can be any element. During this phase (which will last 3 turns), expose and aggravate is disabled. Use the corresponding element to trigger an explosion. E.g. an enemy receives Water Reveal. Use a water attack on them to trigger an explosion. Enemy will receive a new reveal on the next turn.
Pros: Encourages diversity of your layout (you want all elements available)
Cons: Might be confusing for a while.
Yes another aspect that will cause confusion in the beginning. Your battle system is very complex and unique, but I noticed changes to explanations (last night YouTube video) that made it more understandable. So, there's no reason you couldn't explain this well enough to understand during battle tutorials.
About Story Changes

I really think I have a great story to tell. I also think I did a poor job of introducing said story. The introduction feels disconnected, and this is where I show my novice. After some consideration, I am scrapping the entire Jardak/Vadaj section of the intro.
Last night's review of your game talked specifically about this portion of the game and I agree 100% with his observations. Drop that first big auto-battle and use the portion that immediately follows for character development and tutorial purposes to develop Vadaj's personality and background. You could truncate that section, but I would keep it and look at the dialog used to see where it could be tweaked so it really explains the character. But be careful with using too many words. I've always been a "show me with actions, don't tell me with words" type of person.
Looking forward to your next version release.
 

Reinarc

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Thanks @kimo. I did get a chance to watch most of it. It stung a bit, no lie. But he wasn’t wrong in most regards. I was a bit shell shocked by the fact Vadaj wasn’t immediately identified as a villain after the incident and that I implied a cooking system. That was interesting!

I think starting off in Alavon will allow me to accomplish everything I want to and more without the disconnect. You’ll meet both Vadaj and Jardak. You’ll get a chance to actively learn about combat. And you will see what caused Aarlins shift in personality first hand.

In hindsight, I should have pulled the game beforehand but I really thought my chances of getting picked were slim to none.

Thanks for feedback on Overload. It’s being tested at the moment. I’m aiming for something that’s satisfying but has drawbacks. Hence the reason you can dial back the gauge if the times not right.

I’m pulling the game from itch later today and will be planning a relaunch when I’m done.
 
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kimo

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@Reinarc
I thought his ad-lib observations were very complimentary in general. When a reviewer says they "wish other developers did something like this" in response to specific game mechanics you are definitely making a unique game that people would want to play.

I understand pulling the game, but might I suggest you edit this site and itch to explain why you pulled the download especially right after a good YouTube review.

And, finally, Vadaj as a "bad" guy isn't established in the beginning of the game. But character growth in any direction does take a while to create. This is where actions, not words, have such a great impact on the character's development. Like a teacher once told me, "It's like planting a seed and then watching it organically grow. Let it be what it wants to be and it may become something different that what you planned." He was a bit wacky sometimes but an excellent writing teacher.

Good luck with your project. We'll be watching
 

Reinarc

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Oh no I’m very appreciative, don’t get me wrong!

Its just not the reaction I was aiming for story wise. So I’ll go back to the drawing board and improve. I want anyone new seeing the game to get more cohesion. I’m taking a short break to be a student for a little while. Still, I expect the relaunch to be middle/end of May with all the changes I listed. ^_^

You are very correct about character development.
 

Cythera

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Please don't be discouraged, Reinarc, your game has some very good points! Getting your work reviewed can always sting, since different people like different things. Someone may tell you what you make is perfect, and someone else may tell you it's garbage. What's important is you make something you are happy with.
People were giving a lot of good advice in ways they think your game can be improved. But at the end of the day, it's your game :)
Story presentation is difficult to get right, since, again, people like different things. You've still got an intriguing world and real characters - both of which are infinitely more important than storyline. I will debate with anyone who says otherwise, and believe me, they'll lose haha.
What I'm trying to say is, keep at it ^-^ I'll be waiting for the next update.
Take criticism with a grain of salt, think about what you want your project to be, and use advice to achieve that.
 

Reinarc

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Super appreciated. I also appreciate the kind words yesterday (as well as @Meowsticks), and Lady_JJ and Kimo's feedback. I'll see you guys in a few weeks, and good luck on your games. :LZSsmile:
 

Meowsticks

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I was happy to see when they were playing your game (btw now that I remember. How do you pronounce "Sempiternal" we were wondering a bit at the beginning of the stream :LZSlol: ) because I knew they'd give good feedback! I agree with pretty everything said at the stream and everyone said here, so keep up the great work cause it's got a ton of potential and with some work it can be a great game. :D
 

Reinarc

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Semp-eh-ternal

It means the same thing as eternal, but more earthbound versus supernatural. It ties in with the theme of the game which isn't quite yet seen in part 1 :)

I hope your game gets up there too! You've worked really hard on it!
 

AbstractMan

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Call me crazy but I cannot agree with studio blues assessment on your white-haired boss. I think the difficulty is fantastic and he felt like an actual boss. Your battle balance and implementation is something to be envied, and in addition, I also think it did require using everything you have learned up until that point to beat him. That said, I love a challenge and you offered that in spades.

Regarding story, while this style of anime esque “chosen one” grand adventure is not my cup of tea, I did feel a passion behind the story you tried to convey. It seems like you have taken a lot of time to world build, which is not easy. I feel like you have a great colorful canvas you have been working on, but the dialogue seems almost unnatural. Now, what is challenging is you are taking the roles of two characters who have already lived a life in this world that the player would be unaware of. This makes the extreme detail of their dialogue they deliver to each other seem stilted or unusual. That is not an easy challenge to overcome, but I feel that is the root of the issue. Without a character who is an unknowledgeable outsider, then YOU alone as a player must take that role and it is not an easy role to take.

In the end, Cythera is right. Everyone likes different things, and you cannot please everyone. Build something you always dreamed of playing. I think you are doing a great job, and I am not even a fan of these kinds of games! Keep it up.
 

Reinarc

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Hey-o.

Just a quick update: the project's still alive. In a nutshell, the delay is due to:
1) I've decided to get back to college to study computer science (motivated by how much fun I've had with the coding aspect of RPG Maker)
2) Corrupted game files which cost me about 20-25% of my game.
3) Personal stuff and things.

I'll update again at the end of July, hopefully with a new demo. Be safe and take care <3.
 

Lady_JJ

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I'm so glad the project is still alive, though I'm sorry about the corrupted files. Best of luck in your college studies!
 

Cythera

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Exciting news! Well, except for the corrupted files. That's sad news. But it's good a new demo is coming soon!
You've got my insane difficulty mode in there, right? :ywink:
 

Reinarc

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Exciting news! Well, except for the corrupted files. That's sad news. But it's good a new demo is coming soon!
You've got my insane difficulty mode in there, right? :ywink:

I'm still hashing out how I want to approach this. I'm trying to find a simple approach this time.

You keep going too! Otherwise I'll....pout at you. D:
 

Reinarc

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Happy almost Christmas ^_^

Yeah, school and work are kicking my butt. I've been doing a web development bootcamp on top of being a teacher in these crazy times. I haven't even been able to touch the project, until about two weeks ago.

Doing weekly blog updates on Itch to keep myself accountable: https://reinarc.itch.io/sempiternal

I'm really excited to show it off! My biggest time sink right now is NPC writing, and balancing bosses for normal and hardmode. -.-

I'll need some bug/beta testers shortly after Christmas!

preview.jpg

preview2.jpg
 

Lady_JJ

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I'll need some bug/beta testers shortly after Christmas!
So glad this project is still alive and super excited to see you again. I hope you'll consider me for one of your bug/beta testers. :)
 

Cythera

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YOU'RE BACK :kaojoy:
I was looking at this thread earlier today and thinking 'He said July...should I say something...?'
Anyways! Looking forward to the next version!
 

Reinarc

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Of course @Lady_JJ! I have gotten into the habit of writing all my dialogue in Google Docs now and proofreading (somewhat better - lol), but I know I'll need a good pair of eyes like yours.

@Cythera yeah....I was woefully unprepared for how much teaching was going to be different this year. I've never worked so hard in my career. I'm going to get in what I can...but my big push to get the relaunch out will be on Christmas break. @_@
 

kimo

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@Reinarc
I would be happy to be a beta tester when you need. Happy to see you continuing with this game.
 

Reinarc

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Probably my last update before I ask for testers, I figured I'd do it here this time versus itch. Aiming to be ready by the 24th, but I'm not going to stress out about it like I did in the past.

Currently working on the end of the Tella Forest arc. I really put a lot of effort into fleshing out the NPCs more than before, but it is a fairly short scenario as before. Made some minor map tweaks.

Because it's my favorite part of game making, I'll go into the other pictures. Quinten has had an adjustment that's fairly substantial. By the end of the entire game, I had him sitting at about 8-9 unique skills he learns from monsters. To make him stand out even more from his friends, this will jump up to about 15-20 by the end of the game. To manage bloat, you can only have 6 active skills at a time which is handled through his Alter menu (what used to be his passive button). Now I can add some exploration options to find different cool, random skills that you can put away if you don't find them useful.

I am axing the blacksmith/weapon extraction system entirely. In exchange, I will be adding more diverse options to the Alter menu with varying elements/abilities. This is mostly to...preserve my sanity and help with balancing.

Lastly, the random encounter system. I talked about it on my itch.io, but I took away on map encounters and created my own random encounter system instead. As you can see, you can ignore battle altogether, do random encounters as is, or use a lure to chain battle. There are a set number of enemies in each area, and once depleted you don't have any more encounters. You can reset the encounter number by finding an alter crystal in the area, should you want to grind.

You have the option to completely ignore battles in this way, and for NOW I'm okay with that. Leveling does provide stats and more options in the alter menu, but the bulk of your power is coming from equipment and strategy. I don't think later bosses will be easy/possible on hard mode without access to more of your abilities (only through leveling) so I'm still deciding whether I want to force players to deplete the random encounters in each area or not. Let me know what you think.

The first part will end in the caves before Hrelda (after the boss). Mostly because of work stress, but also because I want to completely rewrite Hrelda and make it bigger. This is going to take time. I have a great story arc for Belai and her father that's a little less grotesque but still carrying a lot of emotion, and I want to flesh it out. You'll be in Hrelda for longer than the first version.

I'm really excited to see the feedback on the story changes, good or bad. I finally feel confident in the central narrative, but I'm willing to make tweaks as necessary.
 

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Cythera

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So looking forward to this! I'd be happy to play test your game :yhappy:
 

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