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Martin Nerurkar

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Created a new topic Dev Update 002

An overview over the first few weeks of Early Access and a look at the upcoming patches this year.

please do! I'm looking forward to it. 

Also: Exhausted means the unit can not act, Refreshed is the opposite of that.

(Edited 2 times)

Correct, as long as there's no unit in front of them you should be able to attack.

I'll double check that progress-tutorial issue. That should not happen - or rather the Tutorial SHOULD happen.

EDIT: Yeah, that's in fact a bug. It deletes the progress file but doesn't clear the progress in memory, and then saves that again when starting a new game. A workaround is to delete progress and then quit the game. Starting it again there will be no stuff in memory and you can start a brand new game. Sorry about that. Will be fixed in the next patch/update.

(Edited 1 time)

Thank you for your feedback. These may be things I need to make more clear. I am thinking about a help screen that explains the keywords and everything. That's a bigger feature to get right though. 

You can however redo the tutorial by going to the options and deleting all your progress. That will restart it.

And positioning: only the units that are first in their row can attack/be attacked

Oh, I forgot to reply: I've gone over the feedback and here's my thoughts:

REWARDS:

Yes, they are a bit too low in the beta. I've adjusted them upwards some and may do that even more. In general the resource economy needs a definite balancing pass. I'm planning to do that for the next patch. Resources and equipment.

ENEMY HP:

All beta-enemies having 20-30 hp was in fact a bug. That should be fixed now.

AI NOT HITTING FACE:

There's definitely some room for improvement on the AI. It's not a priority at the moment though. And you're right, the AI used to start with 4 momentum, which it no longer does.

FOLLOWERS DIEING IN EVENTS:

Yeah, that can be a real bummer. I do like some harsh punishment now and then but there may be a bit too many events like that in there, especially those travel-disasters that you have little to no control over. That's just unnecessarily harsh.

yeah, that one's on the list for the next update!

Posted in Feedback

Hey Helix! Thanks for the extended feedback.

And Inxi, thanks for your replies.

Inxi is pretty much spot on: Some of the things you've mentioned will be addressed in the next patch (15th Nov is the current tentative release date). That will also include completely overhauled enemy decks with fewer direct damage cards in there.

Other things I want to look at in the future are:

  • Removing cards from the leader deck (most likely in a permanent "unlearn" fashion)
  • Rebalancing the entire economy (food, batteries, hope)
  • Change the way followers are lost in events. Currently there's a few events where you just flat out lose X followers. I want to generally changes those more into "some dudes take wounds" and balance the follower selection on "you lost X dudes" to pick non-rare, non-legendary non-in-your-deck dudes first. There will - most likely - be no "select which followers" because that's going to be a huge feature with lots of UI. I have some cool ideas here (such as sometimes sending in the good dudes for a better chance of success frex) but I would much rather concentrate on aspects of the game that are more important.
  • And lots of other little things

And that's it. If you've got more questions, let me know! Again thank's for the feedback, thanks for playing and thanks for buying the game. I'm happy to hear you appreciate it. I've been working on this for a long time and it's really nice to hear that people enjoy the game, and to see that they enjoy it enough to take the time to write down their ideas and concerns.

This thing is going to be awesome by the time it gets out of First Access! I hope you stick around for the journey :D

(Edited 1 time)

> Consumables

Yeah, I want to celebrate that sharing some more, give it some narrative weight, but I don't yet know how to best do that.

> Help / ?

This is not working as intended, even when an older version featured overlays for many of the screens. I think a simple help screen with some text explanations might be more useful, but that doesn't need it's own icon and could be accessible via the pause menu. And that's another feature / lots of content...

> Wounds

Current Beta: Units can suffer one wound. While they are wounded they spawn with -1 Health. If they die while wounded, then you lose them forever. PERMADEATH!

Replied to ColeWunderlich in Regen

Yeah, but that makes things a lot more complicated and needs a remaining-regen count displayed somewhere. That makes an already unusual ability even weird, so that's a no-no.

Another idea I had was that once a follower regens, they are auto-stunned. Which means you can keep them in a stun-lock or just attack them without fear of retaliation until the enemy is out of momentum.

Yeah, right now I'm pretty particular to the "after a certain point adding a card means removing a card" solution. Maybe that's every second level, or maybe it's a fixed card number (which I'm not too fond of though). I'll think on it. 

Or maybe as you level up you get "learn" and "forget" points (maybe not at the same rate). And you can then spend those points to learn a card (costs batteries) or forget a card (costs batteries too) as you want. but that makes the interface more complicated...

Replied to ColeWunderlich in Regen

Leader cards and effects that simply destroy (for example Posion) already cancel out Regen, but it's still pretty powerful in the current version. However I'm not sure if specific cards that interact with it are useful since there's not that many Regen followers in the game.

Posted in Combat Caches

Caches do have a chance to drop a larger chunk of food, or a better item.

See your separate post for some answers to those questions :D

(Edited 2 times)

Yeah, I've just talked about this briefly in your other post - it's something I've been thinking about for a while.

I don't want the leader deck to be as malleable as the follower deck because I want the one to be constantly in flux while the other one is slowly changed and improved. But an option to trim it down may be needed.

One thing I had in mind (and built, then removed) is that you can go to a teacher to either learn a card or forget a card. But this sort of double-use of that location did not feel good. Maybe there needs to be another location type where you can simply forget a card? But that may add too many different locations. I'll need to think on it.

Edit: Another option would be that whenever you learn a card, you also discard a card from your deck, so you stay at the same card count, but replace old cards slowly. Not sure how much I like that, yet. Just brainstorming here...

Awesome! Thanks for all your feedback. And great to hear you cam via Splattercat - I was really happy to see him play the game. Listening to his narration of the game was just so much fun!

Pros

Really happy to hear you're enjoying the game so much. Thanks for taking the time to write that down!

Cons
- Poor tool tips for opponents units.  

This is an obvious lack. In fact it'll be fixed in the next major version. I've already improved this but am also doing some larger scale content & balancing changes so I'll give that on a bit more to marinate. The current release date for v0.11 is mid November.

-Lack of help in general.  Outside of the tutorial there is no explanation/reference for game mechanics to be found.  An in game glossary and the ability to replay the tutorial would be helpful.  One thing that is still unclear to me is if a larger convoy size causes increased food consumption as you travel.

It's tough to find the right balance between too much and too little help. If you've looked at the UI there's a small "?" icon on almost all screens that should give you context help for the current screen. It isn't supported on all screens and people don't seem to use it at all. I am thinking about adding a sort of lexicon/glossary but there's so many more important things to deal with at the moment.

As for food consumption: yes, it does. I think the only place to learn about that is the tooltip on the food in the upper bar though.

-You can't use consumables unless you are at certain locations. 

It depends on how you view using consumables. In my narrative it's making camp, sharing the items with the convoy and finding a moment to relax to increase your hope. You need a safe place to do this.

-No sell value displayed for non-battery goods

Yeah, that's on the list as well. Might not make it into next version but should be available soon.

-No retreat mechanic for the player.

Yeah, I think you have also suggested that in the Bugtracker. I got to say though: No plans for this, at all. There's two main reasons: Firstly I don't want to add any more features right now - but rather focusing on making what's there work well. And secondly being able to flee would mean a lot more narrative content as suddenly every fight needs to have a narrative option for fleeing (or some fights should weirdly not allow you to flee etc.). And that too just isn't in the cards.

-First battle hangs/crashes which kind of ruins the initial tutorial.

Yeah, I just noticed. I've checked it out and should already have a patch out that fixes that. Damn, how that one could slip by me I do not know.

-Regeneration

Yeah, that's something that will be addressed in the next update.

-Unable to edit learned leader deck

This is something I'm still mulling over. It's important to me that the leader deck is a lot more static than the follower deck. I don't want players to feel like they have to constantly fiddle with both decks before each fight. But I am thinking about being able to "forget" cards.

Misc

- Unit Wounds

Yeah, that is also changed in the new version - each unit can only take one wound. And once they have one, they start play with 1 less health. That makes things a lot clearer and deadlier. Which feels nice.

-Weapons/gear seemed to have a minimal impact on gameplay later in the game.

That's a good point. I think I may need to think about find some solution to allow you to "forget" cards permanently. But that will not get into the next patch. The one after then :D

Thanks for the nice words and the feedback. I'm happy to get your input and it's great to hear that you're loving it :D

Deck Builder hover

I actually thought about that too. I started redoing the tooltip for followers on the board so you can see the actual card, and did some research on other card games and experimented a bit, and turns out it is a lot more useful if the card does not cover the cursor area but rather appears to the side. So I added that and voila - massive improvement. I'm probably going to straight up add that to all the card tooltips.

Deck Builder remove / add

Yeah. I've noticed this isn't ideal. It's something I can clearly see whenever someone is streaming the game. I'll have to see what I can do to improve this. 

Difficulty & Resources

As Inxie mentioned - this is really player dependent. I think the game needs a better difficulty curve in general - easier in the beginning and a good ramp up. At the moment the enemies just aren't balanced as well as I'd like. And the resources are another thing. I want the game to be hard, so there will always be a degree of randomness to your food stores but the general economy needs some work..

There is also the idea - which is on the "nice to have" list - to add a selectable difficulty. That would probably influence enemy strength and resource gain to be somewhat acceptable to balance.

Enter Combat Crash

I really need to look at this. The key issue with bugs like that is reproducing them. As soon as I can create it on my machine I can look at what's broken. Alternatively a log file is always helpful, so if you run into the issue again, please do report a bug with the log file. Note that you'll have to do that immediately after closing the game. Opening it again will overwrite the log file.

Tablets/Phones

The quick answer: Tablets are very very likely but will take a while. Phones are not going to happen unless this thing blows up so massively that it's worth to invest the time and energy to completely redo the interface to work on a smaller screen.

Also here's a quick Twitter thread on the topic: https://twitter.com/mnerurkar/status/921810718114148354

Yeah, it's funny how much a tiny thing like a tooltip can actually affect the experience.

(Edited 1 time)

Yes, first impression feedback is really valuable. It's not something you get often.

Also regarding the crash: from the sound of it it's something that happens when the combat wants to start but for some reason it doesn't. A log file would be helpful but that's reset every time you relaunch the game so don't worry about it. Should you run into another issue though it'd be very helpful.

I'll just have to sit down and try the start a bunch of times to see if I can trigger the crash. As soon as I can reproduce it I can usually fix it. If I can't it's really hard to pin down what caused it in the first place.

(Edited 1 time)

Soft Lock

Yeah, that should not happen. I noticed the same when watching Splattercat's video. His tutorial was slightly out of whack because he had some crash he mentioned briefly. I will have to double and triple check this. Crashes shouldn't happen, especially not this early in the game.

Tooltip Timer

It is currently set to 0.75 seconds but will be reduced to 0.5 seconds in the next major update. I am also considering shifting the display of the card away from the pointer.

Follower Stat Colors

There really is no way to do this "right". I had it as red = attack, green = health but people kept complaining. In the end I looked at Hearthstone, considered them the market leader and just took colors that were similar to theirs. Still I decided to add icons to the cards themselves to make it clearer.

It seems that the yellow/red color scheme works for a lot more people than red/green ever did. Plus it has the added benefit of still working for red/green color blind people. 

So: I know where you're coming from - it's where I started out, but I'm not likely to change this again :)

And lastly: Thanks for your feedback! I hope you enjoy the game. If you have any questions or need anything else, please let me know!

Created a new topic Combat Caches
(Edited 1 time)

In some fights you can find caches of equipment, valuables, food, batteries etc. I still really love the idea but I'm not sure how well it works. So my questions for you is: How do you interact with the caches?

  • Are you generally trying to go for these?
  • Or are they more of a side-note that you'll get to if you can spare the action?
  • Or did you never even notice them?

Edit: I am also considering extending the caches for some that may be harder to destroy but that grant Mindset points.

Yeah, it should be available freely during the early stages of First Access - or at least be available very quickly. I hear you.

As said, I've noted it down. I'll look at it and see how easily it's doable. It is an excellent idea.

Replied to Inkxi in Nowhere Mode

That may be an idea. I'll look into it for the next major update.

Posted in Card Ideas

Hm. A few of these are very enemy specific and might be well suited to equipment. For example something that takes away flying. So far only Rusters have flying so it'd be something only needed in a deck with these dudes.

Posted in Nowhere Mode
(Edited 2 times)

Yeah, regardless of what it's called, it could be something really interesting for players. But it's definitely low on the priority list of things. I want the campaign running smoothly first. Then, on the basis of that, I can think about an endless mode - though that seems to be predestined to be something to patch post launch. I'm thinking it's something you actually have to unlock even? After the first successful campaign completion you can get the endless mode?

But on the other hand, hacking something in there for endless testing might be an idea. But still, I'd like to stick to the game as is for now and concentrate on the content. And the next major release will add another map.

If you want we can chat about the topic sometime over on the Discord. 

And don't worry about the long posts - I'm always glad to get feedback.

Posted in Dev Update 001

Aww, you guys! <3

Posted in Nowhere Mode
(Edited 1 time)

Hm. An endless mode is an interesting idea... 

Created a new topic Dev Update 001

A quick look at what's up and coming for the Nowhere Prophet First Access!

Posted in Regen

Yeah. If it turns out to make it usable the idea of turning regen into "regenerate health" instead of "avoid death" is a feasible one. There's even a few ways to try: auto-regen 2 health at the start of your turn. Or spending 1momentum at the end of your turn to heal up fully etc.

I was particularly fond of the "trigger abilities cost" idea since it meant you would have to plan your use around your followers. But if it's not working it's not working. But as said, the 2mom cost is what I'd try first.

Posted in Regen

Quick feedback:

  1. This requires putting that number somewhere easily visible on the follower - which I'd rather not do
  2. That would weaken the ability tremendously, I think probably make it useless? But it is an option.
  3. Again the same issue as 1. You'd have to put down the cost somewhere clearly visible.

I'm thinking an easy attempt at fixing it is raising the cost to a flat 2 Momentum. I'll give that a try.

Long post on AI, short answer:

AI is hard. Really, really hard. And Nowhere Prophet has a system in place I'm pretty happy with. It's not perfect and it needs some tweaks but there's not going to be a major AI rework - simply for lack of time. I'm not an AI expert and building a really really good system (see Eternal for example) is hard. So unless you find someone who's good at this exact problem and willing to put the time in to make a new AI (for free, cause there's not really much in the way of budget either) then I'm willing to look at it. 

But from where I currently stand my time - besides some much needed tweaks - is better invested in working on the content than redoing the AI system :)

Created a new topic Card Ideas
(Edited 4 times)

If you have any card ideas, do drop them here. 

I'm currently thinking about leader cards specifically as I want a bit more variety here. Mainly to make the Enemy decks more varied. At the moment the base of a lot of decks enemy decks are unit buffs and direct damage, which is fine but gets quite boring quickly. Also it leads to too many attack cards in play.

Some more basic leader cards are sorely needed. Especially some that don't add entirely new features, mechanics and interface requirements. :) 

The most obvious ones are probably some simple "gain keyword X" cards. These would need to be valuable enough to see play though, and there's already criticism for the existing Gain Taunt cards.

Thanks! A few questions for clarification:

After you've recruited new followers in a campsite the option remains visible to recruit more followers eventhough it's not truly possible anymore. Same goes for Teachers. Text there even show

We're talking about the button at the right side of the screen, correct? Are you saying the button should not be visible or are you saying that the button is visible and clickable, even though there's nothing to do?

Shouldn't you be able to attack Obstacles with Leader cards?

You should. You couldn't? I'll have to check if I somehow broke this but you should be able to use attack cards to target obstacles on either side of the field.

Seen several typos in my playthroughs, don't know if you want me to keep track of them or if you get to going through all the text at a later time anyway?

There will be an editing pass at the end once all the text is in there. Still if you spot any do throw them my way, I'll try and fix them. Mostly to not get them reported again and again and again :)

Thank you all for the feedback. I'm taking notes and will post a detailed "what's next" update tomorrow.

(Edited 1 time)

Heal wounds heals a total of 10 wounds on your followers. It tries to heal 1 wound on each follower, starting with the most heavily wounded ones.

As for flying. It's sort of intended to be sniper from the other side. 

  • Sniper: Can attack even if attacker is behind obstacle. 
  • Flying: Can attack even if target is behind obstacle.

You're right in that it doesn't make a lot of thematic sense but it felt like that way the abilities best complement each other.

Good catch on the tooltip. That's actually an old mechanic - used to be that you could scrap a card (before I went with recycling). Scrapping would discard the card and generate 1 momentum. Doable once per turn. I decided against it because it messed with the power curve too much - you pretty much wanted to do that every turn - which led to you discarding many cards, which led to you losing play options...

It actually changes color - but may not be too much. The color of the arrow is white when available and grey when used. But you're right - changing the entire circle color is a lot more noticeable and it's an easy change.

Replied to Inkxi in First Impressions

Yeah, the next major update will extend the range by one map, if all goes well. I know things there are playable but I want to touch up a bunch of things - especially the milestone cities - before setting them loose on everyone.

Posted in "The Face"
(Edited 3 times)

Oh so many questions.

No pictures of kids. It's a very iffy place to go and I'd rather you fight full grown wasteland cannibals - though I have to admit, a legion of cannibal children would be hilarious. Still - no kids.

Follower is super bad? Own it and enjoy being miserable. My face is on a sorta bad follower, and that's fine. At least the bad followers are usually more common drops so you show up more, right? And anyway: you're still in the game. 

Upgrading purchase: Honestly, I'm not sure in what way that's doable with the itch.io system. I can ask their support if you want. If it doesn't work, we'll find some other way to make it work.

Also, just in case you aren't aware: Here's the CONTENT GUIDELINES for the First Access rewards. Just added the "no kid picture" line :)