It is hard to justify drawn-out, multi-step objectives to accomplish some technical task for the story when in other places you can just roll Operate 3 and do anything. I hate sci-fi.
Does anyone know any good stock RPG puzzles along the lines of "guess-the-right-combination-of-switches"? Ones that are maybe less done-to-death than "each switch adds a particular number and you have to add it up to the correct sum."
No new chapters added, but I fixed some of the long-standing problems. Particularly item distribution. Originally there were separate "decks" of items that were used to dish out items both into the world and into replicator menus, but because these decks were static it became prohibitively tedious to continually adjust them by hand based on how advanced into the game you were. Hence, there tended to be a persistent plenitude of all the primitive items (like bullets) but none of the more advanced items that you actually need in the later chapters (like shotgun shells).
Now, all possible items are dealt from a single deck, but the deck is automatically skimmed based on the chapter, with certain types of items only becoming "available" after a certain point. Also, each item is randomly assigned a "value", which in most cases determines the quantity of the item in the stack, and as the game progresses the baseline "value" increases, so that you will start to encounter larger pools of bullets and nanites even while other advanced items start to make an appearance. (The value is randomized logarithmically, so there's always a tiny chance of encountering a ludicrously valuable find in an early level.) (And anyway the point is that this is all now done automatically by the game instead of me having to do it by hand every time.)
Replicator menus are also generated by pulling from the items deck, assigning a random quantity and then assigning a price based on the quantity.
With this update all semblance of balancing has been forcefully ejected from the premises. Although I suspect it's still too easy to get slathered in nanites. And unfortunately these changes only apply to new games that are started and generated from scratch. Anyone who imports a save game into this version that all ready has five chapters built won't actually notice a difference.
And a question: Does anyone know any good downloadable (standalone) software for adding reverb effects to sound files? I have a crappy free program that doesn't support plug-ins, and its own software reverb is crap.
Chapter 5 is over. By customer request, this version has an unencrypted databse.
Full of impatience, I DID NOT DO A FULL PLAYTHROUGH after the last round of fixes. So this chapter may crash and explode in wonderful ways. But then, that's hardly new when it comes to this project.
Balancing is a huge question mark at the moment. I don't know how difficult the new chapter will be for people based on their party builds. I found it unbeatable without developer cheats due to the fact that there are very few supplies to be got in this chapter so it will tend to wear down your reserves.
I plan to revamp the item distribution system and the replicator setup to allow for more advanced items to appear in later chapters.
Saving is set up differently now, such that only one party member needs to be in a save room for you to be able to save the game. It wasn't like this originally since now you can theoretically park one party member in a save room and then save all the time, but given how challenging the game has become otherwise perhaps this isn't such a bad thing.
Since this chapter requires another big party split-up, there are a number of HIDDEN SCENES that may occur depending how you pair off the characters. SEE HOW MANY YOU FINDP.
Also, doors still do that thing where they don't animate properly while opening.
Also, there still aren't "active status animations" to show you when your characters gets a Toxin status etc.
I think there was more to say but I forget.
Now for a blisteringly harsh criticism of some other RPG Maker projects.
Don't try to make an open-world, free-roaming, exploration-based game in RPG Maker. It won't be as good as Skyrim. It won't be anything like Skyrim. It will just be aimless and boring. Stop trying to be like Skyrim.
One of the challenges in balancing this game is that while some enemies are too easy when you attack as a group, if I make them tougher then they become impossible when you have to encounter them with a smaller group.
Still killing security bots in one turn, NewBlack? Try it in a SOLO BATTLEP . (Also an overcharge shot consumes more energy now so you can do less of them.)
Also in conventional RPGs you can grind between major challenges to build up resources if necessary but that is not possible in this game. So it is CONSTANT STRESS. Not to mention that most of the recent types of enemies don't drop any loot. So you might find yourself out of supplies and in an unwinnable game basically with no way to escape, and it's really up to the player to have made multiple saves if they want to backtrack which sounds quite unforgiving. WHAT DO YOU THINK
Chapter 5 was supposed to be a big maze using different sets of doors that could only be open one at a time, to force you into splitting up your group. After months of development it appears that it has a shortcut solution that everyone will find every time they play, because it manifests if you simply show reticence about splitting up your group and you keep them together anyway, which would be everyone's initial action. Incontrovertible fail!
Making RPGs is hard.
Let's eat cat food and play Mario Paint.
Aside from Total Maze Design Failure Chapter 5 is almost done, aside from the final few events and then testing. I was going to add an improved loot distribution system that would fix the excessive amount of nanites, but I don't really feel like it for this version. So excessive nanites it is. It has to be done before November though because November is NaNoWriMo and that is most important.