Iteration 2

Dev blog? But it’s Friday! What’s going on? I’ll level with you – Friday script posts take me about 5 times longer to make than the other posts. And that doesn’t even include the time spent looking for amazing RPDR gifs. I have to the learn the script, come up with challenging new uses for it, poke at the edges, implement it. I’ve cut corners by featuring scripts I’m using in Vidar, but running out of those.

Never fear, the Friday script feature will be back, but it will be less frequent than…well every week.

So today, even though it’s Friday, I wanted to write about recent iterations to the Ice Cave! After playthrough, it was clear that getting the waypoint was absolutely critical. Without it, it could take 5 of the player’s 10 minutes just to reach the next puzzle. And the waypoint was tied to an incredibly challenging quest from Bernadett, which involved going back and forth across the Ice Cave several times.

But if Bernadett died in the first few days, the player was penalized so heavily that the rest of the game became impossible. While the point of varied quests was to change the way you play the game, I never want you to feel like “oh, so-and-so died, I have to restart.” And our favorite judgmental nun was absolutely in that position. Based on this, I’ve decided to add multiple ways to “teleport” throughout the caves. A minimum of three, so that the player has some way of rapidly advancing to the puzzle they need to tackle next.

1) Waypoints are staying in. Each area has a waypoint that can be unlocked by completing a certain quest, and that waypoint gives the player direct-from-town access to a room in the middle of each biome (chosen randomly, of course).

2) The Ice Cave waypoint is now the reward for completing Borbalo’s quest. His quest is slightly easier than Bernadett’s – asking you only to visit each of the graves, rather than returning ghosts to them. Borbalo’s former quest reward – the journal – is now given to you at the start of every game.

3) Campfires. A new addition to the Ice Cave are randomly placed Campfires. Doing a quick, easy, and early quest for Dani allows you access to Campfires.

The location and number of campfires is random, but there are at least three in the Ice Cave.

The location and number of campfires is random, but there are at least three in the Ice Cave.

Dani’s quest is designed such that about 95% of games will complete it. In exchange, Campfires give the player a trade-off. A player can use a Campfire to immediately end the day and start the next day still in the cave. This means that the player can keep solving puzzles without being forced to awake back in Vidar. But the Beast waits for no man – someone will still die. And if you needed that person to complete a quest, you’re SOL.

4) Ghost running. Bernadett’s quest reward has been upgraded to allow for quick transfers between the graves in the Ice Cave. This is by far the most flexible of the three ways to move about the Ice Cave, and is a strong reward for a difficult quest.

The other biomes are getting a similar facelift. The upshot of this is, more quests. Way more quests. When Vidar started, there were 24 quests planned, full stop. Now we’re at 34, and I expect we’ll be up to 50 by the time the beta is ready. I’m thrilled that the solution to this problem was more game diversity, because that’s what Vidar is all about.

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