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Solasta Development Update #1: Goodbye Telema!

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Solasta Development Update #1: Goodbye Telema!

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Tue 5 November 2019, 20:25:21

Tags: Solasta: Crown of the Magister; Tactical Adventures

The Solasta: Crown of the Magister Kickstarter campaign successfully concluded last month. Two weeks ago, Tactical Adventures announced their plan for keeping us updated on its development. They intend to publish weekly dev diaries on the game's website and Steam page, plus monthly recaps that will also be pushed to Kickstarter. It seems sensible to post news about the latter. As you'd expect, the first dev update isn't about one thing in particular but rather a quick look at everything the team has worked on this month, which includes Solasta's unnamed main city, tutorial levels, world map mechanics, character creation and more. Here's an excerpt:

Main City

There's one question that has been asked quite a few times during our Kickstarter: "Is Solasta a pure dungeon crawling game?" If you've been following our updates, you'd likely know the answer is no! We actually just started working on the main city - which will remain unnamed for now as we don't want to spoil too much. We're still evaluating how much of it will be open for you to visit, we'd hate to pour too much time into that and end up having to cut other locations as a consequence. For those of you out there who are wondering - yes, there will be a tavern, for what's a city without one!

Campaign Introduction

It's no secret that most games nowadays need tutorials to ensure that the player understands how the game works. This could be as simple as pointing out elements in the UI (for instance, many people complained they couldn't find the "Rest" button in the Demo), or as complex as explaining the rules of combat to someone unfamiliar with the tabletop ruleset (Action, Bonus Action, Reaction...). So, in order to do that without boring our future players to tears, we've been working on including those during our Campaign Introduction Levels!

Game Design

There's quite a lot we still need to refine in terms of rules and how everything works in Solasta. For instance, we've been working on Design Documents on two significant topics that weren't part of the Demo: Traveling & Random Encounters. What is revealed on the World Map (more on that later!) and what isn't? How do you travel to undiscovered locations? How do other RPGs handle traveling? This is but a tiny glimpse into the mass of questions we have to find answers to when we put a design onto paper in order to avoid wasting time coding something and realizing afterwards that... well, it just doesn't work (or it does, but it's not fun).

Other topics we've been tackling include climbing (how high can you climb? What affects the DC?), sleight of hand (can it be used for something other than stealing? What happens if you get caught?), rethinking the inventory system again (by the end of the project I think fingers won't be enough to count how many times we've revamped the inventory) and... Party Banter! (Kickstarter Stretch Goal)

Tools & Gadgets

Tools and what now? When you're creating a level, you need tools and gadgets to do what you want. Sometimes, it's something as simple as saying "This door can be lockpicked" or "When I activate this lever, I want that door to open"... but the simple things are often the most crucial ones! So, our Programmers make sure that our Level Designers get what they need - as once they make the gadget, our Level Designers can use it as much as they want. Now some of you might already have an inkling of a larger picture here... If I said modding, would that help?

Wait wait wait, what does this have to do with modding? Well, if and when we release modding tools, we want people to be able to easily make more dungeons and levels - and that's where all these tools & gadgets come in. Everything we add for our Level Designers, we want Modders to be able to use it later on.

Invisible Work

Designers & Artists often get to show off their work with pretty screenshots and gifs, but Programmers? They work in the shadows, carefully biding their time before they can finally OVERTHROW THE TYRANNY OF... Sorry where was I? Ah yes, Programmers. Among other things that you cannot see, but are very important, they've been making improvements on all types of movement (Jumping, Climbing, Crawling...). Because yes, even little things like your character going prone to crawl through a duct automatically when you click on it needs some programming love behind it. Otherwise you'd be stuck with manually having to tell your character to go prone, then crawl, and then manually telling your character to stand back up. Ugh.

Fun fact, our CEO also implemented Character Creation! If you remember the Kickstarter Update where we showed you a sneak peek, back then everything was on paper - now we can actually create a character in-game.
Solasta's CrowdOx pledge management portal will be launching later this month. That's handy because it gives us time to deliver the money from our fundraiser, which ends this Friday. Last chance to get the game if you missed the Kickstarter campaign.

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