Part One Release

Awesome to see this revived! I remember enjoying the original release.

I've encounter an unavoidable hard crash to title, though... At the Gnome's festival in the forest, after doing all of the fetch quests and the gnomes start trying to cook the Floo or whatever that thing is called, the game crashes with the error message "Event script referenced a hero that does not exist." It's while the team is sitting on the log off to the side, right after Phillip says "I'd take one of them over the bow of my boat if ya know what I mean!"

Final Fantasy Blackmoon Prophecy II

So I've been playing off and on since this was released... I don't want to write a review yet because I'm not done and I'm hoping some of these issues solve themselves later, but... While it's a great game (huge world, fun if somewhat familiar plot, good characters), you have some major balancing issues, imo. It's not so much that the game is hard - it's that the game isn't balanced in a way that is very fun (at least to me, ymmv). The game is generally well constructed and I am still having a good time and, imo, this is something that could be easily patched, so this is meant to be constructive:

- Experience gains from battle are wacky (they increase in fits and spurts and don't seem to correlate to enemy difficulty), encounter rates are really high, and random encounters are way more dangerous than bosses, who are generally weak as kittens, so it's just easier to slap on the moogle charm and only take it off to grind when you find an area with unusually high exp-to-risk ratio (e.g. the dream in the forest of Zen, where exp gains per fight is higher than in most of the Branch region but enemies go down in one hit)

- Enemy abilities are weird - enemy stats don't seem to matter, so Bolt 2 has been hitting me for roughly 1000 HP damage since the enemies first started using it. Originally, it hit me for 80% of my health. Now it's closer to 30%. Because of this, some enemies deal way more damage than is appropriate for the level, while others are dealing way too little, because it's all based on their abilities instead of their stats.

- The Death spell is way, way, way, way, way too frequent. It's not that hard to counter (since Phoenix Down are cheap) but it enrages me. I can't possibly be the only one. Either reduce the effectiveness or don't spread it to so many darn enemies

- Except for Vigor and Speed, most stats don't seem to matter. Magic does affect your magic damage, but you don't see a huge difference in damage between characters unless the difference in the Mag stat is huge.

-Stamina and Spirit don't seem to matter at all. Having 50% more stam/spirit seems to translate to 10% less damage - Hautley and Edric take similar damage from most attacks, so why bother with defensive stats?

-This translates to further issues because Mag boosts are generally on defensive equipment, so there's no reason not to outfit your entire team with equipment favoring 1) speed; 2) vigor; 3) magic, in that order. Nothing else matters.

- Physical abilities have weird formulas. It's generally better to just attack than to use abilities. Some abilities aren't affected by vigor at all for some reason (e.g. does Aurabolt scale off Vigor or Mag? Who cares, Jasmine just wrecks things with her basic attack command)

- Limits are not very useful because they don't seem to scale with any stat but level. They seem to ignore buffs, so... Why bother? Also, several are bizarrely balanced

- Most characters are useless for general encounters (at least through lv 30), because Hautley and Carina are just plain better. Most characters are sorely lacking in AOE abilities and in ability variety (I don't count multiple elements as different abilities unless they do different things)
1/2. The Augurers - Oy, these two are a mess. They have really balanced stat, but their abilities suck and they're stuck with subpar materias to even use them. I never got their abilities to drop anywhere, so I'm always having to hit the augurer coliseum for them, which is annoying. It's impossible to tell which of their abilities are stronger (they don't seem to correlate to MP consumption), they have no AOE, and I'm not even sure if their abilities run off vigor or magic. Their only good abilities thus far are Zuu, for the party-wide haste, and Marlboro for the status effects.
3. Sapphire - Her abilities are basically level 1 x-magic that require items. This would be fine, if not for the fact that Hautley learned his versions in the single digits and Saphhire is still working on learning these past lv. 20, after Hautley is working on Fire/Ice/Bolt 2. Her other item based abilities are also generally underwhelming because they require a big stack of items for generally ho-hum damage/effects. She finally gets decent after the Forest of Zen bit
4. Silas - His attack move is weak, his support moves are unnecessary. Thus far, his only saving grace is that he can use elemental swords
5. Bolt - I actually like him. He's fast, has a decent spread of abilities (gil toss has its moments and is cheap, Rescue is usefully strong combined with high speed, Peep would be good if not for the interface issue, etc.). Though, why does Dash miss what seems like 80% of the time? Also, the Magitek spell is lousy and has no use whatsoever
6. Edric - Given that stam doesn't seem to do anything helpful for me, he's not that useful. His kit is decent thus far (healing, buffing, debuffing, etc.) but his stat/equipment loadout doesn't really offer much
7/8. Hautley/Carina - These guys are so, so boring, but they are so, so much better than all of the other characters. Hautley, Carina, 2 random mooks to soak up hits can clear basically every fight up to Branch without having to think
9. Jasmine - Her abilities are way, way weaker than her attacks, but her basic attack can wreck everything when she's properly equipped. The fact that she manages to be a physical wrecker, decent mage, and speedster while the rest of these mooks are so weak and underwhelming seems a bit unfair...
10. Trigger - A well balanced characters. No complaints on him

- Boss fights can easily be cleared by using one or two physical characters, equipping them with a good weapon, Gauntlets and/or Genji Gloves, using a Power Coating (are these supposed to be infinite? Mine never get used up), casting Haste and Rampage (though, Genji Gloves don't work with Rampage. Is this intentional?) on them, and just healing occasionally.

- Mechanics are not clearly explained. Ability descriptions are unhelpful (you have so much empty space in the description! Give me actual numbers, effects, and elements!). Item descriptions are also unhelpful. Improves evasion? By how much? Why can't I see my evasion?? Why are there so many items I can use in battle whose descriptions says nothing about what they do?

- The Peep/Libra interface is nonsense - some symbols are used twice - once for status effect (e.g. burn, flu) and for an element (e.g. fire, water), so the icon will show up in the weakness and the resistance side. Is it weak to burn and resists fire, or vice versa?? The elemental icons are not used for anything so I'm never quite sure what all of them are (what are holy and shadow's icons?)

So, incredibly long story short, I have three major recommendations:
1. Improve the information you give the player. Give the player a clear sense of exactly what abilities do and what enemies are weak to. I *think* the abilities for most characters are lousy, but I might just not get what they actually do. The player should know what stats to increase to affect ability damage, what effects the ability has, and what its general power level is
2. Revisit your damage formulas - stats are generally not sufficiently determinative of damage, on both the player and enemy side. It makes a lot of abilities and equipment you've designed completely useless.
3. Revisit how you want your player to level as they go through the adventure - are the experience payouts really consistent with a smooth level curve, or are players grinding in certain areas and ignoring fights in others?

Final Fantasy Blackmoon Prophecy II

Hopwfully that works for others!

I'm still not home (after all, it's Christmas), but I'll take a peek at Tesla and the card side quest shortly when I'm finished visiting family.

Enjoy your Christmas! You've clearly earned a good break. The game is great!

If it helps, I ran into the Tesla problem too. It's not the only ability I learned early. Bolt and Jasmine also learned abilities (Arctic Fist and Gil Toss, I think?) I learned them from speaking to a random NPC wearing a diving helmet in the arena. He's standing in the middle of the lobby and has no lines. I'm guessing it was a testing NPC you put in to test the abilities and forgot to delete?

Unrelatedly, Jasmine has been stuck in a diving helmet ever since she rejoined me after the Great Lindblum Reef scenario. Might want to look into that too at some point.

Final Fantasy Blackmoon Prophecy II

To the people having problems with the world map lagging really bad, i ran into a problem similar to this with my old PC running flash/java applications, i know that's totally un-related but i remember distinctively the problem was unrelentingly annoying and even more annoying to fix, it had something to do with my power options / profile as i was running on a laptop. I hope somehow this helps, the issue is most likely to be client side and not a problem with the game as not everyone is experiencing that issue. It was weird too, only java/flash games would run like trash, i could play way heavier games without any problems at all. Good luck yall

This worked for me! The Lenovo Energy Management software was to blame. I switched it to high performance and the world map became smooth as butter. Even the battles are less laggy!

Now, I wonder if this fixed the problems I was having with my own game's lag that caused me to quit... Well, that's a problem for after I'm done playing through this game!

Blackmoon Prophecy Randomizer

So I saw you put up a download (a "build", I think you called it?) and was pretty excited to give it a shot after enjoying your early demo. I assumed it would be rough, and was ok with putting up with it to give some feedback. Problem is... the current download isn't exactly playable. There's a bunch of events in the second forest that seem out of whack with my level and the plot. From the context and what I remember from the first demo, I think these events are supposed to have a condition switch and happen on a subsequent visit. I tried skipping my way through the forest, but the same thing happens at the fort up the mountain. Any chance there is a quick fix, either on the player's end or on your end, so we can enjoy the rest of the build?

Wow. Is it 2013 already?

Good question! My current plan is to release all of Part 1, and then hopefully one day all of Part 2. I guess I am still somewhat open to having a smaller demo first, but here is my thought process:

1. Chapter 1 is not a great reflection of the rest of the game. That's not to say that the quality is lower, but it's a bit disjointed and mostly serves to introduce some characters, situations and concepts that are used in later chapters. It introduces some of the gameplay concepts, but it's short and doesn't have a ton of narrative drive.
2. Chapter 2 is VERY different than Chapter 1. There are sort of two plot threads that run at the same time and the more political one doesn't get started until Chapter 2. I don't like the idea of getting fans (or haters?) with Chapter 1 and then having them feel like I pulled a switcharoo on them by changing the very nature of the game on them in later chapters. I think that playing multiple chapters together gives the player a better sense of what the game is.
3. I want players to get a sense for what the game is before they start tearing it apart with criticism. If they don't like it, that's fine but I don't want to have to play the "It all comes together in later chapters, trust me!" card over and over again.
4. I don't want criticism from a Chapter 1 demo to slow down my momentum on the other chapters. The game is what it is. I am all about listening to constructive criticism, but the game is ultimately for me. If I open it up to the public so soon, I am afraid that the criticism will just make me doubt myself and compromise my vision of what I want my game to be.

Then again... Maybe I should just release something for the sake of doing it, to see how people might react. If I'm being realistic... Well, at this rate, this game will likely never see the light of day.

Lunar Wish: Orbs of Fate

So, maybe I did something wrong and bugged this out somehow, but I think I broke Falk's skill tree. When I went to buy the second (was it third?) level of Falk's second attack up skill, it suddenly turned into Earth Strike Level 6. I now have lost the attack up skill entirely and have mastered Earth Strike without spending any points in it. Turns out Earth Strike Lv. 6 is a decent investment anyway, so I'm not too upset about it, but it seems like something you might want to fix.

Enjoying the game thus far. It has some balance issues (why are enemy physical attacks so weak and magical attacks take 70+% of my health per shot?), some characters seem useless (looking at you Arc, though Cindy is not a particularly useful character on bosses either) and the plot is a tad aimless (I've been on the same basic quest for hours!) but the dialogue is funny, the characters are zany, and the game looks pretty good.

Realms of Arcanum: Generations

Played through the demo and enjoyed it quite a bit. Just a few random thoughts:

- I felt like the dungeons were each about a map too long, especially the green tower. The mushroom valley to get back to the town felt unnecessary.
- I didn't love the idea of every character being able to use every job. I mean, the generic jobs, sure. But I think I would have preferred for each character's personal job to remain exclusive to them. They're more gimmicky (not in a bad way) and I think they give each character some flavor. You might want to have a look at how Wild Arms XF handled this - I really liked the job system in that one.
- I was intrigued by the second party. Are they a one-time gimmick or are they going to be a big part of the story? They sort of reminded me of the light/dark parties in Final Fantasy Dimensions. I really would have liked to see a bit more playtime for that party and maybe some classes of their own beyond just their starters.
- I am looking forward to seeing what other classes you have in store. I was not in love with the warrior, archer, or the purifier. The starter classes all have intriguing skillsets with a lot of variety and some expected and some offbeat abilities. The other 3 had really expected and straightforward skillsets. They had a handful of intriguing abilities, but just didn't compare.
- The red-haired guy's skillset doesn't work quite right. Two of the three runes/orbs/symbols/whatnots look exactly the same in battle, making it hard to figure out how to pull his combos till you memorize them.
- Also, the red-haired guy would work better as a slower character. Ultimately, his skillset doesn't work any different than just picking an ability from the menu if he goes first in battle. If he goes towards the end of the round, though, he can tailor his spell to what has been happening in the round. For most of the green tower, though, he was acting towards the beginning of the round (after 1-2 enemy, but before everybody else) which made him less interesting.

Looking forward to future releases!


I agree that the right sword is better. The left's sword looks... blurry to me. The outline style isn't as good.

I don't love the girl's sprite though. Her pose is a bit awkward, like she is tilting forward (which I guess makes sense since she looks so cartoonishly top-heavy))

Release Notes: v.10

Thanks for your feedback! I'm glad you liked it.

The game should be closing itself at that point. Did it do that? Returning to the title screen at the end kept causing crashes during my testing, so I just put a quick script call in so I could submit this for nagademo.

It just hung up after the screen went to black. I don't know what it was trying to do.

- There's a light-element spellbook in the cave. Use the machine to unlock the door on the left instead of the right and it should lead to a chest containing it.

Ah. Darn it. I went through the left door, but I don't remember getting the light magic book. Must have missed it!

Well, I'm not too far into the dungeonmaking yet, so it shouldn't be too time-consuming to change things. Were there other games that you thought managed respawns well?
I could also slow down some enemies or enlarge the building dungeon a bit. (Kiting them might help too)

I can't think of any games that did it well on top of my head, but I think timers might be the best way to go. If I leave a room and then immediately turn around and go back in, the encounters probably shouldn't reset. Some amount of time should have to have passed. As somebody else pointed out, though, it was definitely more of an issue in the tight quarters of the old building.