Coffee Diary 18/1/21


Hey Exanimates,

This week has mostly been a whole lot of adjusting everything to the new itemisation system and putting in some final touches. There is a lot more, and more meaningful, randomisation and many, many items and content to go through.

A big part of this was the introduction of different materials. Each item is given an overall grade or elegance, then each individual part of the item has parameters describing what it is, how elegant it is and how it might be coloured. Finally there are external factors such as the wealth of the owner or elegance of the outfit. All this must result in different materials and dyes being used appropriately. It's a complex system, but presented in a simple way, and there was a lot of tweaking involved to "train" the system to give the desired results with all the possible combinations.

Another part of migrating to the new itemisation is stats. Previously items could just pick from one of a handful of carefully designed modifiers. In the new system items have varying materials, material and build quality, item traits and material traits and condition all working independently and with fine grained values. This is much more complex and less predictable, and indeed we had to make some overall adjustments to accommodate these changes. For example, you can now have a heavy, low quality, badly damaged plate harness which exceeds our previous limits for encumbrance on a single item.

Finally we have procedurally generated item descriptions to accommodate the fine grained differences between items. These are actually quite important, because you might not be able to tell what the qualities of an item are and whether it might be worth investing in just by looking at it. Descriptions are quite exact about quality, condition and traits. We had something that was quite structured to combine and modify words and phrase fragments to avoid inelegant grammar and word repetition, but now we developed something smarter and more versatile that can draw from a much larger pool, discard poor combinations and find alternatives automatically. It will also try to stick with similar wording for the same item, so if the condition changes over time the description will remain similar.

With all the mechanics well established we can easily continue to tweak things after it's gone live and we observe more of how it behaves. We seem to have it in a pretty good place already, and we've updated all the related mechanics and content tools for things like drop tables too. We do still need to go through a bunch of items and configure them individually, but we expect it to be smooth sailing now, without going back to adjust systems because something isn't quite working right.

Have a great week!
-the BM team


what about gameplay and powers and such. you know stuff that people care about
First, they will most likely work on "pawarz" later on. As for abilities I've seen in a lot of different games they don't tend to impress me that much. Flashy ranged attacks, AI manipulation, mini Garry's mod and noclips. And don't forget flashiness. If that's what excites you then you've got no sense at all. What makes a game fun is its challenging but reasonable nature. The trial has to be very hard but sensible and mostly realistic in its nature, that is what holds you in that world, immerses and captivates you for hours to come.

Ohh yes, the tools of toil, in this case weapons and armor gotta be real wicked too cuz we love sword porn and fashion autism here.
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