The time is right, and the moons are in alignment.
Wait, no. That's what I say when the game is DONE! For this blog, I mean...
...it's high-time I get off my butt, and finish this game with a grand finale!
I'm fairly confident I can get the last areas in the game okay, but, I'm a little worried about the "grand finale" part.
This is mostly because I have no idea how I want this game to actually END.
One thought I've had was to have a sequence involving a final boss fight with Ryoko as an ally. You know, as a way show why the old bat is the Master, and Okiku is the Apprentice. Another possibility is showing that Okiku has grown beyond what Ryoko can teach her. Or, more likely, Ryoko cannot get Okiku to sit still long enough to teach her anything useful. There's definitely options that I can choose from.
Anyway, I guess this is the beginning of the end for this game.
I think... I think I will miss working on this.
Bah! No time for sentimentality! Let's GET THIS DONE!
I managed to find the thing that was messing me up last blog. Apparently, there was an "End Event Processing" in the "encounter table" right after it checked to see if a 2 was rolled.
The reason why it was there to begin with was in an attempt to get out of event processing, since it was vaugely possible to get two fights in a row because of the variable shenanigans involved.
Anyway, GAME UPDATED! Read over these few new thingies that you can look forward to while you download.
Evolution points, out of lack of a better term, was fiddled around a bit. All abilities take at least one extra use at base level to evolve. Leak's evolution points has been set to six, since it's previous incarnation only had three, and therefore, pathetically easy to evolve. With my playtesting, I was still able to get max skills by the end of the demo (or thereabouts), but...
...I hope that this will be okay.
There are now randomized quotes on engaging in a preemptive strike. There is one quote that changes based on which map you are on, and the tests I've done on it seem to relay the sense that the system, as a whole, works as intended.
All the more reason to get yourself some WOB action!
As mentioned in the previous blog, it is now possible to automatically defeat enemies. The condition under which this occurs is based on whether or not you've defeated the boss of a given area. You will still get experience and money for automatically defeating foes, but, they are tied to approximate the weakest encounter one can come across in a given area.
Of course, you can use the Wand of Blasting to activate this functionality! The processing is a bit weird, but, hey, it works!
The biggest change, though, is the inclusion of the island of Kawachi, and it's associated town (Ino) and dungeons (Kaminoyama, Shrine Path). This ultimately means there are two more ingredients to find!
Now, about save-file compatibility.
If you have a save file from the old demo, I find it exceptionally unlikely that it would work with the new demo.
For one thing, the Teleport Orb would have more locations for players to 'port to in the new version. Going to one of these places using an old save file will probably cause the game to throw an exception, and force-quit.
At least there is a way to skip the opening sequence with Ryoko.
If you have played this before, I highly recommend using that function. Unless you rather enjoy the opening sequence.
So, here I am, trying to insert some more color commentary from our Star Apprentice. They came in the form of random quotes for preemptive strikes, and random quotes for when enemies could be automatically defeated.
Yes, you read that right! Automatically defeat enemies! Considering our protagonist, this functionality feels like it should be a thing.
Anyway, both the preemptive random quotes and auto-defeat random quotes roll a virtual D3 (results 0 to 2). The "encounter table" rolls a virtual D7 (0 to 6). However, play-tests show that the results that actually got me into an encounter were, you guessed it, 0 to 2. Anything above 3 on the "encounter table" removed the encounter from the board with no apparent processing whatsoever. The variable that was getting randomized was the exact same one for each of these processes. So maybe, just maybe, there was some kind of weird interactions going on here.
Here's the REALLY annoying part, though. Even after removing random quotes and the auto-defeat processing, the "encounter table" still seems to ignore results above 3. And I have no idea as to WHY. I had hoped that quitting the editor, booting it up up again, and starting a test-play from scratch would clear things off, but it didn't appear to be doing so.
I'm at a loss, frustrated that things haven't gone back to how they worked before, as I'm looking at the places where I had the code, and... it isn't there. So, should it NOT work as before?
Why is it ignoring results of three or higher? Gaaaah!
90% of the time, the puzzles that I make aren't terribly complicated to solve.
This isn't cool.
I thought, maybe, I would get some decent inspiration through the possibilities that are presented by the Wand of Blasting, but...
...apparently, I'm still in the "simple puzzle" mindset. This isn't cool either.
I keep trying to think back to Wild Arms 2, and what all Lilka can do with her Fire Rod. I figure the functionality of her Fire Rod and the Wand of Blasting should be approximately similar. I inevitably start thinking of those Millennium Puzzles in that game...
...and I just cringe. Those are not experiences I would NOT want to duplicate.
Though, I recall a different puzzle in WA2 where you hit switches in a specific order in order to proceed. I think it was Antenora's Diablo Pillar? Maybe not. Anyway, that... doesn't seem so bad.
Sorry about the lack of notation in the manual about the use of the Wand of Blasting. This has been included! Anyway, with the playtesting I have done, it is possible to have the best skills by the second boss. Though, I tend to be quite particular and through with my play-throughs of this game.
There have also been some writing additions and changes. Such as the addition of a few townsfolk, and their associated Wand events. Another notable addition is status-removal items.
Though such items can be bought from the store, they are dropped at a fairly decent rate by regular enemies.
Look, why don't you just download the thing, and tell me what you think?
I'm been doing some brainstoming on how to make skills more unique.
On Okiku's end, I think she's going to retain Ray, First Aid, and Concentration. I still want her to have two STR-based skills, and I'm figuring one can be a stun-skill whose duration improve over it's evolutions. The other could be a skill-sealer whose duration also improve over it's evolutions.
For her last ability, I'm considering a debuff that reduces more stats as it evolves. I'm thinking duration might actually REDUCE over the skill's evolutions, to balance things out.
With creatures, I have to be careful. The fact that players only ever have Okiku in the party means that actions that prevent action altogether are no-nos.
However, since DON'T ACT can't be a thing, we can still play with conditions that can be removed via item use.
Such as skill-sealing, and poison. Maybe "MP posion"? Perhaps enemies can debuff Okiku?
I don't want to get too overboard, though. This is supposed to be a light-hearted game, and frustrations should really be kept to a minimum.
I'm not exactly sure how I want to deal with monsters in respect to the Wand! Part of me wants to initialize a normal combat. Another part says to remove the enemy and have players grant EXP, but grant the least amount of EXP that is awarded for the encounters that are possible in the area.
I welcome any commentary on this, and any other possibilities!
So! This is what this is all about! Which of these could more fun? Is there some other idea I can incorporate? Pass me your thoughts!