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"Well now, how did these little morsels make it so far
under their own power? I think I'll keep my eye on them."

Ill Will is a dungeon crawler with carefully crafted, minimalist story elements and simplified overall design. The combat uses a turn-based structure with a heavy emphasis on elemental affinities, and a streamlined AI routine for enemies that helps curb outright stupid behavoir.

It is very firmly divided between gameplay and plot, with decently-sized sessions of both, rather than a more rapid alternation.

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Update ( 7/31/2012) - Completion

I'm marking this as being the 31st instead of the 1st, since I've been uploading since "yesterday".

Ill Will is complete. You can finish the story, choose either a normal New Game Plus (basically starting over) or a Strong New Game Plus (keep Traces, learned skills, and level, and re-allocate stats). Either way, you'll have access to additional story scenes, additions to existing scenes, and a very special something.

I might have a prize for the first person to beat the optional NG+ content. Of course, I might not.


My mind is full of fuck.
Looking great so far, I didn't know the car was larger then the characters, and the driver might be distracting if the characters come right in front of them, lolz, in-joke. But overall, I'm enjoying it so far. The character style smells Persona. : D

Abit of a sentence mistake there.

"It's not like that went aware, though".
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
Are you doing anything except Attack?
Are you doing anything except Attack?

First try I tried attacking first, then guarding when prompted, then I tried only guarding (hoping that it was some prescripted thing) then I tried an attack rush, then I tried again to kill it and was done in again. No other skills available despite having equipped them. Even when guarded I go down in like, 3-5 hits.
Are you doing anything except Attack?
First try I tried guarding when prompted, then I tried only guarding (hoping that it was some prescripted thing) then I tried an attack rush, then I tried again to kill it and was done in again. No other skills available despite having equipped them.

Remove all skills from Will and don't equip them. I think there's a bug there. For some reason, when I equipped skills to Will, Will doesn't have any skills displayed in battle. But when I removed them, the skills are there.

This bug only applies for the 1st battle. Chaos, do look into it.

EDIT: There's a second way, Newblack. Just keep defending until Zombie no longer uses Strength Zone. The Strength Zone is limited.
Are you doing anything except Attack?
First try I tried guarding when prompted, then I tried only guarding (hoping that it was some prescripted thing) then I tried an attack rush, then I tried again to kill it and was done in again. No other skills available despite having equipped them.
Remove all skills from Will and don't equip them. I think there's a bug there. For some reason, when I equipped skills to Will, Will doesn't have any skills. But when I remove them, the skills are there.

Chaos, do look into it.

Boo, I got penalized for forethought. Thanks though epilipswitch

Edit: Yeah I was hoping to get a break on my "all defend" attempt but I ended up getting hit with criticals every time anyway so I still died. :< (they still do like 18 damage when guarding if they land a crit)
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
It's already been looked in to. That bug is only present in the original download.

Also, like it tells you: Guards are only at their full potency the first time in a row. In order to get the 1/10 again, you have to do something other than Guard.
if i had an allowance, i would give it to rmn
Despite the sorta corny-ness of them learning how to fight back, this is a pretty awesome game!
Loving the game but right when I was giving the final boss a thrashing he used predator and I got this error...

You the practice of self-promotion
I have seen this error as well, even in some earlier fights. I recall that the crash occurs when the targeted party member is poisoned, which makes some fights harder than needed since I HAD to remove the status to prevent the crash from happening. Can't quite recall if it happens if he/she is asleep or stunned ...

Loving the game but right when I was giving the final boss a thrashing he used predator and I got this error...

Also, I would like to report a few other bugs:

- After you fight Flamberge in the building of no return you are taken out of it. I found you can get back into the building but can't leave through the exit as before and have to go through the whole cutscene and Flamberge battle to be taken outside again ... I guess it would be best that the building becomes inaccessible after fighting Flamberge.

- There are few fights where the enemy behaves strangely. In the fights with the spider-like enemies (if I remember correctly), once you are down to one of them, they won't do anything for their turn. Similarly, the Sloth will do a TC boost in the first part of their turn and then wait. The next turns it won't do anything.

- After defeating both the Swamp Witch and Red King/Black Baron the second time around, after getting Will's level up, you get two dialog boxes with the names of the two other active party members, before their level up is shown. Then you will get two others but with the names of the non-active party members, before their level up is shown. Thankfully, you can press Enter to get through the dialog boxes.

- After you defeat the boss before fighting Flamberge, you get 120% HP/SP healing at the next statue.

Just a wonder:

Regarding the Dragon boss (one of the bosses in Purgatorio), is there any other way to defeat him other than putting him to sleep and poisoning him to death (other than Life Thief)? Seems like all physical and magical attacks heal the dragon instead of damaging him.
Trying to view status in the main menu of someone who does not have a trace set causes a crash.
Sorry to ask this, but I seriously need help.

I'm at the teleporter puzzle in Eden. I cannot for the life of me make it through it as it seems to loop endlessly even after I've (apparently) figured out how to progress in it. I've been trying to get through it for over an hour without success. I don't know if this is how it is meant to be or if it is just the mos soul-crushingly confusing thing I've tried to solve, but it's seriously sapping my will to play what until this point swiftly became one of my most favorite RPGmaker games. Please help.

EDIT: Scratch that, I was missing an event. I feel very foolish right now. Also, I just got the same problem with the Yanfly error when fighting the final boss.
Finished a run of Normal! I was level 92 when I finished. I used the main download button on August 5th, so if I was supposed to get any other patches, I missed them. Thoughts in the tags below:

(The fact that the preview button doesn't seem to work with hide tags makes me nervous...)

With Will, I dumped Strength, neglected Endurance, and went even on the other three stats. He spent most of the game as my primary offensive caster and healer against mobs and a debuffer/healer against bosses.

Debuffing is very, very strong. Wil and Aaron could debuff a boss down to uselessness very quickly together, even before they got Cripple. It takes quite a while before bosses actually start to undo debuffs. Similarly, they don't really undo buffs either.

The Cunning situation is weird. I don't think you can really play the game without increasing Cunning on Will; you need *someone* who isn't going to get hit by every single status effect. But it doesn't make them a better healer, just a better healee, and it makes party buffs miss, too. At 32 Cunning, I never saw a buff hit Will again. Since Will gets Anti-Ailment eventually, you get into a situation where you want Cunning, but not too much Cunning, because you get penalized for it.

(When characters maxed their main stats, I noticed that I sometimes got a pop-up window after level-up that said: "(character name) (end of window.) And then they got a point in Cunning. I'm guessing that's a bug of some sort?)

This game flips the SMT physical-magical progression. Physical starts with the equivalent of a second tier spell in Strike and gets Crit Up and Venom Claw very, very quickly, while magic is just kind of generally bad. Then physical just kind of stops developing. France gets Dragon Claw, which is good, but the progression cut-off is kind of abrupt. Meanwhile, magic gets the Conduct spells, Stage spells, Mana Flare, has more use for the group buff, and continues to get group damage attacks. I used France for most of the game, but I eventually had to drop her for Jo; she just wasn't performing any more.

Vile Zephyr is another big part of why I constantly used Aaron. Holy crap, Vile Zephyr. Does more damage than third tier spells if there's one target, inflicts two good status ailments, the statuses work on a lot of bosses, and it's on a character you want for bosses anyway. If it doesn't work, use Conduct and make it work. Vile Zephyr MVP.

Apart from Vile Zephyr, I didn't really use statuses. Either there weren't many enemies, and I should use Vile Zephyr for consistency, or there were many enemies, in which case I could use Vile Zephyr and be pretty sure I'd hit most of them. And it did damage. Vile Zephyr MVP. This only got more ridiculous once I got Mana Cycle.

I'm guessing Mana Cycle wasn't meant to halve SP costs and give you 20% max SP restoration after battle. Mana Cycle + Focus + Blood Mana gives you 9 MP a turn, and the second tier group healing spell is 20 MP before Mana Cycle. This also makes Mana Flare third tier spells basically free. My end-game boss strategy eventually shifted to, "abuse Endure, debuffs, and nearly free healing to return party to full HP every single turn." I knew it wouldn't take me 200 turns to kill a boss, and if it did, I had +SP motes and group healing motes that could take over for a turn to let him regen SP. Random battles, meanwhile, shifted to "Jo spams Mana Flare spells, Will spams Vile Zephyr, Aaron does whatever."

Endure is probably overpowered. Endure makes the lower durability of Aaron and Jo nearly irrelevant, and it lets you build Will the same way. If it can't kill you from full, Endure makes it not matter. If it can kill you, Endure means that enemies need to hit you twice, so you're probably fine anyway. On the other hand, it's probably the only way to get around having a dedicated tank, and Aaron would be unusable levels of fragile without it.

Were Supercharge and Cripple supposed to be free? The last three bosses refuse to let you keep their stats lowered, so devoting Aaron's turn to Cripple means they lose a turn every round. This is particularly destructive against Loki. He has three turns and has to hit twice to kill through Endure, and by this point you have the free healing combo on Will. And when he goes to his Magic-elemental pattern, he goes charge -> spell -> spell, which turns into "charge -> waste charge undoing debuff -> spell." (I'd feel bad about spamming Cripple on the last boss, but I was too busy laughing. I am a bad person.)

I never used Ethan. This is not hyperbole; he was literally never in my party. Will makes for a better support unit, France is a better melee, and while melee is really good early on, you don't need two of them. He's bad at earth casting, too. A tank might be useful, but he didn't get Endure, so my strategy seemed to make me more durable than that one.

To synthesize all of that:

Will > Aaron = end-game Jo > early or mid-game France > late-game France = early-game Jo > Ethan

Will can do everything, so he's naturally the best.

Aaron has Endure, debuffs (especially Cripple), Vile Zephyr, and enough speed to revive anyone that needs it. His magic focus synergizes well with using group magic buffs, and he can devote slots to Thunder Battle and Conduct to let you abuse Vile Zephyr on two characters. He's good from the moment he gets his first debuffs to the moment the credits roll.

End-game Jo has the combination of Mana Flare, Mana Cycle, Focus, and Blood Mana. Mana Flare, Third-tier spells and Atlantis let her do the most damage in the game, and her ability to attack and remove buffs would be incredible if enemies used them more. She's also the best at randoms bar none, thanks to Mana Cycle, and she rounds out the Endure team. She'd be above Aaron if he wasn't so good throughout the whole game.

Early and mid-game melee is very, very good. Regen is very, very nice, removing one of the main downsides of physical. Unfortunately, France is outshone the moment you get Mana Cycle and obsolete the moment Jo gets Mana Flare. She doesn't do as much damage, she doesn't have Endure, and she doesn't get attacks of equivalent power to high-level magic. Just not good enough.

Early game magic is really, really bad, especially before Jo gets a genuine second element. (The Thief spells don't really count.)

Endure makes Ethan unnecessary, especially since he doesn't get the MP perpetual motion machine that Will does. You don't need a tank, at least not on Normal.

I'll probably go through the New Game+ stuff on Normal, wait a while, and then try Hard. I enjoyed the game! I was watching and waiting for the release for a while, so I'm glad I got to play it.
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
Ethan was far and away the best ally PC until Endure was made, and by then I just wanted the game out.

Haha, is Supercharger really free? That is mortifying, but hilarious. I know for a while Desperado was free because I kept forgetting to assign it a value.

You know, no one's told me how Happy and (later) I did with the story yet. I have no way of knowing!

Oh, I did a stupid. I put "damage *= 4" instead of "@hp_damage *= 4". Huh.
I love how any mention of the way Cunning works regarding healing gets ignored...
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
Dude, fuck how Cunning affects healing. Just looked, it's commented out anyway. No +0.25 points per point of CN. Ignored indeed!

okay that came off cranky and tired because I just got up, so let's try that again

I thought I had answered at some point that I had dropped Cunning's relation with healing, and that it shouldn't even be a thing anymore.
Yeah, I suppose this game is riddled with a number of minor irritating (though not game-breaking, except one or two) bugs, and one of which is Supercharger, which somehow costs no SP. No SP cost for such a strong move?

Bugs are definitely one of the down points of this game. But, hey, this game is still great at the moment despite the bugs. I'm still going forward :)
I seem to have run into a bug on New Game+: I can't start it. I loaded a saved clear data file and tried both the Normal and Strong New Game+. Both times, after the first screen, Will walks up to the street with Aaron and the dog, Loki walks behind him and stops when he does, and the dialogue choice box never appears. Nothing else happens, just barking. Barking forever. (I left it while I went to go get lunch and when I came back, ten minutes later, it was still stuck there. I don't think waiting more would help.)

I guess Loki was in on the NG+ and went for a preemptive strike. Cheating bastard.

Aside from that, the menu that starts NG+ is kind of badly designed. If you pick Normal GCD first, you can't pick Strong GCD afterward, because Normal GCD resets your stats. Picking Strong GCD second causes it to ask how you want to reassign 0 points. Normal GCD is on the top, too.

You asked for story impressions, so here's my review on that aspect.

I don't know who's speaking the opening narration. It presumably isn't a human, because humans don't typically feel the need to indicate that "people" means "human." It can't be Will, because he didn't meet the others recently. It can't be Raymond, because we definitely didn't help him come back to life. I can't think of anyone else, really. Is it completely unrelated?

I don't know what story you wanted to tell. Was it about escaping and returning to the world? If that's the case, then mission accomplished. The drama there is fairly well-done, and the inter-group tension doesn't feel fake or artificial. It's solid.

If it was about the drama between Will and Ray, then that was bungled. We don't see enough of their relationship to really care. We don't know how they typically interact, we don't see Ray often enough to become invested in him, and while there are a couple of subtle hints that Will doesn't like him (Will ignoring him in the initial cutscene, the fact that only Jo knows Ray even exists, the fact that Will refused to let Jo ever see him), we don't know how Ray feels about Will until long after it becomes relevant. When we do see Ray more, the fact he threw Will into hell pretty much kills any sense of sympathy.

Even if the story is primarily about the escape, the Will and Ray plot grafted on weakens it as a whole. Without any investment or spotlight on Ray, his actions seem comedic and disproportionate. "Our parents loved you more, so I turned into Satan and threw you into hell." It's a goofy non sequitur.

(The deliveryman turning into Loki and laughing in the initial cutscene was really well done, though. The dialogue choices grab your attention and keep you from noticing, even though it's happening in plain sight. Kudos.)

Some things never really go anywhere. Why did Loki tell Aaron not to tell them? All it did was spread confusion and discontent, increasing the chance that the party would fall apart and die before they accomplished their goal. It's dickish, which fits with Loki, but it's pointless. What was the point of the characters gradually recalling that night? It doesn't help them remember how they got there, it doesn't provide any clues to the real cause, and the solution to the problem ends up completely unrelated. Similarly, though the past relationship between Jo and Will is mentioned, it never goes anywhere. We never get details, they never reconcile, it's just there.

One thing that stood out to me is that they obviously know Traces exist, thanks to the cutscene after you get the last Physical and Magical Traces and Loki's mention that he taught them to use Traces. The main character's ability to do everything is never mentioned anywhere, though. That's kind of strange.

The story seemed like an afterthought, honestly.
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
Well, that all sounds true enough. Everything that you said felt "added-on" were indeed added on later into developmnent.

I'll look into that map error (I knew I forgot something) and then update the entire download later. I've fixed the Predator thing and some other assorted bugs.