Too bad that I don't have much time right now... I can't wait having the time to sit down a test it to death !
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By the way, appart from the gold, will there be any work done on enshadowed places and characters ?
I thought they they were meant to ignore your threats when enshadowed, but I am not sure that this effect is implemented yet (or at least, I can't see it)
You realise that it is a game whish has been done in a game jam ?
So it is more a prototype than a proper game.
So I don't see how any such game could be called a "A complete, wretched piece of shit."
Good move from "Behind the throne" to "Forbidden gods" !
Well, at least for me...
I have tried a few times to play "Behind the thrones" 1 and 2, whatched some youtube videos. I do understand while the concept is great, and how nice it is to have those intricates politic things. But I haven't managed yet to get into it...
Forbidden gods is much more straight forward, and lets us focus on what we like : wreaking havoc in the world. And it looks like more fun is coming !
By the way, if you were in need to write random text, such as a short description for each city, which evolve with context (war,...), or flavor rich description for these event, I have written a pretty powerfull and flexible text generator : https://vfabien21.itch.io/textstew
I'd love to work with you if you thought it would add something to your game.
Popup messages are story rich. Which is great
The issue though, with them, is that they might quickly become repetitive and we stop reading them. Unless we know for sure that they bring new and important information. So, to be used with great care and skill !
Hence the use of visual and sound clues for common, yet important informations.
Ahah, I don't worry ;-)
I even though I have suggested things, you have understood that the idea is really to give feedback on what works or not with one of your players.
But I still thing that the streamlined version is an excellent tool to test and improve the general gamefeel.
Nice idea, these fixed seeds to help the community share their success
A looooong time ago (1984) that's what had been done for Elite (The grand father of Elite Dangerous), with 8 procedural galaxies only. And it worked very well !
Lots of lore and fanfiction have been written and could be shared around these galaxies
After some more time, I realise what I am missing to enjoy the game : more feedback.
First, it is a really good move from you to have created the streamlined version. As it lets us understand and focus on the core of the game.
The general issue : I don't have fun with the streamlined version. And I don't think that adding new mecanism would improve it. (I use the "I" as it is only my feedback. Others might think very differently...)
Instead, my gut feeling is that it would be much better to the game to stop for a while before implementing new mecanism, and focus and "the shadow spreading", to create a simple, yet engaging, experience.
And once this is done, elaborating around that gameplay experience.
However, I believe that just a limited number of changes could greatly improve the experience. And most of them involve the feedback which is given to the player:
I did not realise how shadow spreading brought me closer to victory.
And spreading shadow does not feel rewarding.
I did not realise that reaching 100% enshadowment or infiltration somewhere (through "enshadow" or shadow propagation) was an important achievment. And made that small "Conquest victory %" progress. And it was not perfectly clear that raising that tiny figure was the goal.
In a word, spreading shadow did not bring any feeling of progression
Wherever a location makes the "Conquest Victory" progress (through enshadowment or anything else), find a way to display it. The simpliest way I know and which works pretty well is the one used in Terra Nil : plenty of particules leaving the place from the map to go to the score.
The reason while it is useful :
- We know that something important just happened in this location
- The fact of enshadowing a place becomes rewarding (we love juicy particles !)
- We understand the link between enshadowing and the score
Maybe there are other ways to display that something happenend. But the idea is to emphase that something just happened on the map, and link it to the score.
Enshadowing rulers is disappointing (and other heros)
I was expecting something fun to happend when fully enshadowing a ruler. But I did not notice any change. Even a hero 100% enshadowed still had 93% motivation to attack me.
It would be extremelly rewarding if we had something fun to do. For exemple, I'd love to be asked to add a random "positive regards" or a "repelled by" among a list. Then, I would get the felling that Enshadowing has an effect on the world and allows me to manipulate people.
Turn based seal breaking is not engaging
Doing nothing and having the seal breaking feels very boring. I would love to get the feeling that my actions count to bring my lord on earth... (Okay, granted : different gods might have different ways to be brought to earth. But this one the is first once. It should be the most engaging for a beginner)
It would be much more rewarding if the seal breaking was tied to the conquest victory level (or with the number of enshadowed settlements).
Now, I would have a great incentive to keep enshadowing the world ! I want those rewards. I want my god to join us !
With these 3 changes, I feel that the game would suddenly become way more rewarding and engaging : enshadowing (and general game progession) would actually become a mecanism that we feel is important, and we would feel how our actions bring us closer to victory.
EDIT : Hmm, playing more I realise that we do got some feedback when a city is destroyed by an army. But it is not where we are watching, we can't see it.
Before that I was wondering how I had gained victory points. I did not realize that those ruins where not there at the beginning of the game, that they were caused by the orcs, and that it was helping my progression... It is the same issue I explained with enshadowing.
But now that I have finally understood some of the game, I wan't to try Shadow Behind the Throne 2, with that political level.
Edit : Well, I have played again Shadow Behind the Throne 2. Its complexity It still is daunting for enew player...
You have really done a good job with forbidden gods to make it more accessible. Thumbs Up !
Hmm. That's tough : I really love the idea, that political network, and spreading of the shadow.
And with that new version I have finally managed to wrap my head around the game (I felt totally overwelmed by previous versions).
The issue is that playing is that I do not have fun playing... I don't know what exactly, but something is missing to create the excitment.
I have tried the streamlined version, but shadow spreading just feels tedious, with little reward. When I have finally given 100% enshadowment to a king, I would love to be rewarded with something. But no. He is just at 100%, and I don't have any feedback on what it changes to me...
Actually, I think that I would feel really excited if enshadowment opened new abilities. Even more if they were random. I have in mind Conquest of Elysium 4, where some commanders get random powers when levelling up. As some are really crazy.
Yeah, maybe the missing stuff is creating expectation to the player, and rewarding him with fun new interactions when he achieves to do something.
The game is looks very rich and deep in terms of mecanism. Which makes me want to dig deeper. But I fell that now the main challenge is improve the way they are staged, to bring excitment, challenge and fun to the player.
Well, after writing my comment, I have read the one about the pill, being a medecine.
Okay, it makes sense. But maybe it could have been brougth a bit more clearly, to give its full power to the ending.
Well, it was pretty manageable.I won on my second playthrough (after understanding that we had to sacrifice humans).
My strategy was simple : build 10 or more houses. and then use humans as they come.
Bravo ! Magnifique narration...très bien servie par les illustrations et la musique. J'ai fais quelques suggestions à rature sur la fin. J'ai l'impression qu'elle pourrait assez simplement devenir encore plus forte.
Le style visuel et le mécanisme sont vraiment intéressants !
Par contre, c'est complètement par hasard que j'ai résolu la première énigme : je croyais qu'il y avait un bug que les contrôles ne répondaient pas...
Hmm. Je me demande jusqu’où l'idée pourrait être menée. Ca peut être fort d'un point de vue narratif, mais pas facile de trouver des puzzles intéressants avec ça !
Très chouette, et très zen. Mais je vois 2 trucs pas si complexes qui etofferaient énormement l'atmosphere !
Travail sonore : si la bande son passait progressivement d'un bruit sourd souterrain au chant des oiseaux de serait fort ! On sentirait qu'on sort d'un cocon pour aller vers une autre vie.
Cinématique de fin : en fait la première video que vous nous avez envoyé avec le passage du sous sol à la foret rayonnante était dingue ! Cette transition était une super récompense. Alors que la version actuelle de la cinématique, qui saute cette phase, est moins excitante. On n'a plus ce moment magique ou on traverse une univers pour passer à l'autre. Et le plan serré sur la fleur est un peu décevant car on ne voit plus cette foret luxuriante et réjouissante.
2 gameplays imbriqués amusants (pauvres poules...). Bon, la partie dans l'air et la confrontation entre les joueurs pourraient être rendue plus excitante? Mais c'est chouette, simple et efficace pour un jeu fait en 48h.