SOTW 0.79 - First Act Beta preview!

The tale of the siblings Althea and Shea https://www.winterwolves.com/seasonsofthewolf.htm
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yayswords
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by yayswords » Sun May 04, 2014 3:13 am

Don't stop nitpicking. It's a beta. We're helping Jack improve the game so people will buy it. Every nitpicked sentence is a meal for his cat :P
If at first try it doesn't explode, it ain't Jack who wrote the code.

Troyen
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by Troyen » Sun May 04, 2014 5:43 am

I just feel bad that I've posted like 100 things and I've barely made it into the game. :( (Though, I'm noticing far fewer mistakes in the story itself.)

I'm on Day 21, Hibernia now, the very first opening quest to drop pelts off at the tanner.

Some things I noticed about combat:
  • There are a number of places where it talks about the Warrior and Thief classes (and probably Mage, but I don't have one). I thought it was Ranger, Hunter, Druid in this game? The sidebar on the combat screen is one (right above the stagger bar) and the combat tutorial has several more. Item shops do as well. "Bombs only usable by the Thief class."
  • The combat tutorial jumps all over the screen. Each time I hit next, the horizontal position of the window changes by like 400 pixels.
  • Combat Tutorial, Melee and Ranged Attacks: "However, if you are in the front row you incur a penalty..." (delete "in" before "a penalty").
  • Combat Tutorial, Melee and Ranged Attacks: The last paragraph says "If you attack a Thief with a Warrior, the damage will be reduced proportionally to the distance (in term of rows) between the attacker and defender." This is really confusing. Does it mean that someone in the bottom left corner does less damage to the top-right corner enemy than if I was shooting from the top left to the top right? Or does it just mean first row to second row? Are you counting rows horizontally or vertically? (All other skills refer to "first row" as the "front line of combat".)
  • I second the comment about the post-battle "click to continue" button being kinda small and located really far away. Make this button more obvious please!
  • Aside: I'm sometimes confused about turn order (maybe because I keep comparing it to Loren). I understand the portraits represent who is going in what order, but it's a little confusing when the active character is flashing at the top of the list when I'm not doing anything but they suddenly drop further into the list when I select an action. I know this is indicating when that character will be active again, but my character is vanishing from the top of the list before I've even confirmed my turn (and if I'm checking out different options, I could be flickering places quite a bit). Perhaps this would be less disorienting if the active character remained at the top of the list until after the action goes off. Or, perhaps I'll get used to it.
  • Why do environmental effects count down from 99? Game engine limitation? What'll happen if I hit 0? (I need some healing spells to test this first!)
  • Actually, the 99 counter is fairly distracting, especially in Ninum when it's blue. It's so much bigger than the actual health/mana banners I keep thinking its character HP. (Maybe the banners need to be bigger or slightly brighter? Dark blue for skill points on the night battles is a little subtle.)
Ninim, Day 21:
  • The overmap doesn't really lag for me, but the arrows spend a lot of time faded out compared to faded in.
  • Nitpick: The "group of wild animals" is usually just one. ;) (But one that's powerful enough to destroy me no matter what I try. Guess I have to take playing on "Hard" seriously this time.)
  • Some places I'm not allowed to go give me a dialog that says "we can't go there yet!" But if I travel "East of Ninum" I just get a black screen and then the city map reloads. Actually, just the tavern says "we can't go there yet!" The mysterious path, my house, and Vaelis' house all give me actual scenes with the characters (saying "we can't go there yet!") Is the tavern dialog a placeholder?
  • The "sell individual item" button is in an awkward place and a little hard to notice.
  • If I click an item to verify I don't want it anymore, I can't seem to get the "sell all items in this category" button back.
  • It's nice that selling all items is a really speedy way to clear out junk, but if I'm not paying close attention I don't see how much gold I earn, unlike selling one-by-one. Maybe it doesn't matter. I definitely would prefer no extra confirmation popup just to show the gold though.
  • Again, toggling tabs on the inventory screen causes the music to skip a bit. Especially if I'm clicking quickly.
  • I can't seem to scroll backwards through text history while in the General Shop selling pelts. I could when the Announcer was talking in the arena and when meeting the lucky illusionist. This is surprisingly more frustrating than I would have expected. Also, why does the text window disappear and reappear after almost every line?
  • Same with the conversation outside with Vaelis. Scrolling back doesn't work. However, once I get home I can scroll again.
  • In the story, the twins go to sell pelts and come home with cash. Later that night, their father gets sick and they have to go fetch a healer. On the overworld map, selling pelts happens on Day 21 of Hibernia, but the healer quest has me on Day 28. Shouldn't it still be Day 21? (Especially if "days until next plot point" is still 1)
  • Four battles into the game and I miss having an indicator on the post-battle screen that says how close to the next level my characters are. Looks like there's plenty of room for this, but I only have two party members right now.
Ninim, Day...28?
  • I've hit level 2 and I still haven't found an explanation for what the "Tired", "Shattered", "Frozen", etc., conditions do.
  • When Vaelis joins the party, it shows him as having +150 exp. Althea and Shea still show the +100 from the previous quest.
  • I don't like this "forced to pick skills/attributes before continuing" thing. I have no idea what kind of character Vaelis is since I haven't seen him in battle nor examined his inventory, but I need to assign attributes now. Apparently he's a "Mercenary", but at this point I don't know what that means.
  • Tavern: The first quest currently reads "Animal Problem by a local farmer". This implies he's creating an animal problem. Should probably be rephrased to indicate he's having problems with wild animals (and Problem shouldn't be capitalized). Also might want some commas: "Aster, the farmer east of Ninim," to make it easier to read (the second quest does this right).
  • Tavern: The second quest on the job board should probably say "100 XP" for consistency.
  • Tavern: "Kill giant snow spider" (lowercase)
  • Tavern: Not 100% sure about this, but "Hunters' Guild" might need an apostrophe. (Giant spider quest)
  • Tavern: I get the "we can find jobs here" speech every time I enter, even if I'm already on all the quests.
  • Forge: I encountered an issue when I was trying to buy two Fine Leather Boots of Speed. I have 298 gold and it would cost me 268, but after clicking the "buy two boots for xxx" button - nothing happened. Actually, that button press didn't even register, I was still stuck on the "select quantity screen" and couldn't even cancel. The game didn't freeze because music was still playing. I was eventually able to escape to the menu and escape again to return and the buttons worked properly. I did not encounter this when buying a single sword upgrade or selling multiple pelts.
  • Forge: When I compare items in my inventory to what a character has equipped (it's so nice to do that in the shop now!), It's a little hard to notice the "close" button in order to switch back to "sell" mode since it's off on the side.
  • On the overmap, why is Vaelis's portrait faded out? See this screenshot for what I mean.
  • Bandit quest: I followed the trail and accepted the bandits' offer. Vaelis says: "I will not part in this." - Should be "take part"?
  • Quest Failed! Bandits stealing pelts: Reward 100 XP. Wait...I didn't actually get the XP? The screen said I did! (Also, the gold coin award might make more sense before the conversation about how much money they earned.)
  • Wolf ambush at a trap: Shea says "Looks like someone is about to catch us!" They're wolves though, not people.
  • Farmer quest: Another spot where I can't scroll back through the text. Most of the rest of the chapter was OK.
  • That wolf pounce is hitting for like 39-53 damage at level 2 when the wolves are listed as "Weaker". Ouch? Sometimes it's a first round KO to my team before I even get to go. That's with a wolf attack of 25 to Althea's defense of 44. (Figured out the way to counter this is to just max constitution at first.)
Skills: (redux)
  • Actually, this one is a trait: Dual Wield: "Offhand weapons inflict 75% damage" (inflict should be singular, drop the s).
  • Conditions are inconsistently capitalized. Some places they are capitalized like Stun talks about Confusion. Some places they aren't like Rally, Leap Attack, and Disarm.
  • Dirty Tricks: "After 5 turns, or once the character runs out of SP..."
  • Final Blow: Same remark on "If not boss" as with Cross Cut and Critical Hit. Whatever you ultimately go with should be consistent across all skills.
  • Final Blow: Wording is off at the beginning: "Hits target with critical hit and will do instant kill if target is under 30% health" should maybe be "Critically hits target and instantly kills them if they are under 30% health"
  • Disarm: If you aren't going to capitalize "Paralyzed condition", you need to add "the": "causes the paralyzed condition".
  • Disarm: Here you use "(if enemy not boss)". I think every time you've mentioned the "not boss" caveat you've used a slightly different representation. ;)
  • I haven't used it in battle, but is there a reason the Recover stance requires 15 SP? Seems like you slow yourself down and give up three turns before you start getting any benefit (and then you only get back a net +20 SP). Maybe it is balanced though; I'll try to check later, but this just sounds like something less appealing than the Hunter praying to tree gods for 50% SP and I'd probably skip on my first play-through. Or second.
  • Throwing Axes: "Throws two axes (double attack) at a single target in the front row for 125% damage, causing them to bleed for at least 3 turns." "To" a target implies you're giving them the axes to use. :) If Bleeding is a condition, ignore the last change, but I'd recommend just capitalizing all conditions. (They even show up yellow on some pages, I think, which is even better.)
  • I think Shea's wagon trait is bugged. At level 2 he now starts off at 50/55 for HP and SP even when everyone else has fully rested.
A general remark that the gold exp bar outline sometimes blends in a bit with the character in the background (especially Althea in Ranger mode).

I'm stuck on day 28 playing hard. I can maybe take out one snow wolf encounter before I have to rest (because Althea gets herself KOed even though she's not doing that much in battle), but I can't even do the "easy" quests. I might need to restart and play the stat maximizing game better to continue. Definitely a huge jump up from Loren's and PS's hard difficulty (both of which I beat on my first try, with only a couple of boss battles giving trouble). A lot of it is due to the defense/attack disparity at this level and how enemies often go first even when I have a higher speed (slightly).

Anyone else trying hard yet? Would be nice to hear another perspective.


Here's my system setup:
2011 MacBook Pro w/2.3 GHz i7 and 8 GB RAM running Mac OS 10.9.2.
Video card: AMD Radeon HD 6750M, 1024 MB
Last edited by Troyen on Sun May 04, 2014 7:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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yayswords
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by yayswords » Sun May 04, 2014 6:16 am

I've hit level 2 and I still haven't found an explanation for what the "Tired", "Shattered", "Frozen", etc., conditions do.
Mouse over the debuffs when you cause or suffer them :) there actually isn't so many debuff types in this game.

Anyway... gonna nitpick something. When you convince the bandits to hand over the recipe, don't have them say "thank god". Don't mix in real religions. "Thank the Gods" if anything (capitalized for reverence).
If at first try it doesn't explode, it ain't Jack who wrote the code.

Troyen
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by Troyen » Sun May 04, 2014 6:25 am

yayswords wrote:
I've hit level 2 and I still haven't found an explanation for what the "Tired", "Shattered", "Frozen", etc., conditions do.
Mouse over the debuffs when you cause or suffer them :) there actually isn't so many debuff types in this game.
Right, they are in combat (and I guess I forgot that when I posted). However, I'm not learning skills or special item stuff in combat, so the mouseovers aren't there when I need them.

A side note about difficulty: running nightmare with a frost druid and a melee ranger (with the heal skill) has so far been much easier than my ranger/hunter combo on hard. I'm able to clear pretty much all the optional yellow/red arrows before proceeding with main story events. I don't know yet if that's because the hunter is weak or the druid is strong (especially in the ice zone) or the hard difficulty is bugged or because I picked the wrong skills on my first attempt. Or maybe two-handed weapons are just awful? Needs more testing.

I feel like this frost druid/melee ranger combo on nightmare is about where "Hard" was on Loren and such. You still have to pay attention and choose skills carefully and there's a high chance of death if you're too aggressive or not aggressive enough, but it's not the "oh, I'm fully rested and I can't even beat the next required fight" I was having before. This way is a lot more fun. I'm not sure if this is your intended "Nightmare" difficulty though, because I can take on a whole bunch of optional wolf fights and do fine.

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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by yayswords » Sun May 04, 2014 6:54 am

After the goblin fortress event, the twins are fully recovered for the next chapter. But when Vaelis rejoins you to hunt for a bear, he has whatever HP/SP he finished the last goblin fight with.
If at first try it doesn't explode, it ain't Jack who wrote the code.

Troyen
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by Troyen » Sun May 04, 2014 7:05 am

If somebody dies and gets resurrected (I was fighting Ratmen if that makes a difference), they lose the environmental debuff.

Here's another weird one:

I'm fighting the bandits stealing pelts. This is the grid:

Code: Select all

[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ]
[A] [S] [ ] [ ]
[ ] [V] [B] [ ]
Shea is a warrior with a sword. When he goes to melee attack the Bandit from his position, it offers a range of 5-6 damage. If he swaps spots to the bottom-left corner and goes to melee attack the same bandit, it offers a range of 8-9 damage. I thought there was a penalty from meleeing from the back row? (It's not a changing status thing on the bandit because I can swap and attack before anyone else moves.)

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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by yayswords » Sun May 04, 2014 7:18 am

Thieves take less damage (from warriors) if you hit them from the sides. Apparently that penalty is greater than that of attacking them from the back row.
If at first try it doesn't explode, it ain't Jack who wrote the code.

Troyen
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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by Troyen » Sun May 04, 2014 7:39 am

Talking to the ratmen gives me two options: item shop or training fight. If I do the shop first, I can't later try the training fight (but I can try the shop again).

The checkmarks in the shop screen that indicate if a character can equip an item only update for store items. If I'm in the healer shop and select a staff for my druid, then go to unequip some chain boots from my ranger, the healer is still showing a green checkmark. Actually, none of the items in my inventory show the checkmark stuff - I have to keep going into the slot to check the "available items" section.

The auto-save seems to save and clear slots at weird times. I guess it's every time there's some dialog choice (even if it's "continue")? It's been fairly handy so far, just strange to see it emptying out slots instead of just overwriting them.

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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by jack1974 » Sun May 04, 2014 7:44 am

Haha wow lots of stuff happening overnight! It will take some time to read it all, better get started :mrgreen:
Glad the map is faster now, I could notice it even on my PC which was already running fine before.

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Re: SOTW 0.77 - First Act Beta preview!

Post by jack1974 » Sun May 04, 2014 7:48 am

I'll answer this first, then get to the older posts:
Troyen wrote:Talking to the ratmen gives me two options: item shop or training fight. If I do the shop first, I can't later try the training fight (but I can try the shop again).
Fixed this :)
Troyen wrote: The checkmarks in the shop screen that indicate if a character can equip an item only update for store items. If I'm in the healer shop and select a staff for my druid, then go to unequip some chain boots from my ranger, the healer is still showing a green checkmark. Actually, none of the items in my inventory show the checkmark stuff - I have to keep going into the slot to check the "available items" section.
The checkmarks aren't supposed to show on items indeed. If you can equip an item, has a green background. If you can't because your class can't, is red. If you can't because of level, is orange. Of course I forgot to put a help text for this :oops:
Troyen wrote: The auto-save seems to save and clear slots at weird times. I guess it's every time there's some dialog choice (even if it's "continue")? It's been fairly handy so far, just strange to see it emptying out slots instead of just overwriting them.
Well that depends on Ren'Py so can't change it :)

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