Honestly it's a bit intimidating to write about the new skill system so early. It's in some ways quite the departure from the old system, though I think it captures it's spirit quite well. But getting feedback at an early point is too important to dither. So here it is:
Every character has an assortment of skills like in Loren. Unlike Loren learning new skills is automatic. The pace is still open but you can expect to have more skills in the beginning. Instead of learning skills you get boosts. These modify the skill on the fly in battle. If selected they can increase strength, duration, range, area, speed or introducing side effects. Unlike Loren where some skills required certain conditions like stagger to be met you can now use all skills freely. But to use a boost you need to meet it's condition. These range from the classical stagger and status effects, to SotW like equipment requirements and entirely new conditions like position or character state. Some boosts simply require you to spend a Boost Point (BP).
In addition the number of boosts you can use at the same time is limited by the skills boost limit. Every skills boost limit starts at 1 and can be increased, though the maximum boost limit is also caped by the chapter. A skills boost limit can be temporarily increased with BP, though it's not yet sure if it will be a linear or quadratic cost increase.
Some boosts are more powerful and have multiple conditions that must be fulfilled. These advanced boosts count for two or even three boosts when it comes to the limit and can only be learned if the skills boost limit is high enough.
You will probably learn a new boost on every level up. However I'm still completely undecided how the skills boost limit, BP and attributes are raised. We will definitely have an auto level up that will take care of learning boosts for our more VN minded players. Though my goal for the easy difficulty is that it can be done without using boosts at all.
Not mentioning SP at all is not an accident, since we removed SP completely. It's role is taken over by BP. So you can use your skills as often as you like with no cool down or waiting for a pool to refresh. Health and BP will be completely refreshed after every battle like in Loren (with the customary exceptions).
My hope with this system is that it will take the fun part of the condition requirements from Loren without the frustrating part of having completely useless skills. With the new system we will probably have fewer skills than Loren and SotW had, since the skills will be more work individually and a lot of differences between skills can be expressed better with boosts. Especially when it comes to damage skills.
Well this is of course only the system how skills are learned and selected. But I wanted to give you a first glance on the type of changes we'll make for the new system.
RPG Programmer for Winterwolves, currently working on: Amber's Magic Shop
Part-time emotionless AI