Exilian Projects => Computer Game Development - The Indie Alley => Pangolin Games => Topic started by: Jubal on March 31, 2018, 05:53:52 PM

Title: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on March 31, 2018, 05:53:52 PM


The Exile Princes is a turn based strategy/RPG where you traverse the Exile realms with your warband/army and search for lost treasures, fight enemies and monsters, and ultimately attempt to ensure the supremacy of your house. The end goal of the game is to have all the cities on the map recognising your superiority, which can be done in a number of ways - getting yourself named as the city's protector by proving yourself in its service, or winning control of the city through elections and political intrigue, or simply capturing the city by force. The four different factions in the game each have a distinctive theme, ideas, and playstyle which will lend themselves to different approaches to this ultimate goal.

The monsters, tileset, and world of the game are a mixture of medieval art and obscure Exilian or pop culture references, creating a unique madcap world in which the exile realms are roamed by herds of whooping quarquares, packs of clawed wibulnibs and families of boar-like tusked kinklades. The graphics tileset itself is created mostly from medieval bestiaries and manuscript art.

You can find the ongoing dev thread and ask for a testing copy here (https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5870.0) - playtesters are very much wanted!


The House of the Phoenix
The House of the Phoenix train their leaders to be courageous, pure, honest - riding their mighty war cockerels, they are great heroes of the Exile Realms, the gryphon-tamers and manticore-slayers whose banner brings. The Phoenix are a bold house, with ambition to reform and reunite the Exile realms - the young and the brave look to them for leadership, for wherever the phoenix banner flies, there lies hope.

The House of the Phoenix focusses on the player's hero character. A boost to starting initiative means that your leader will get to attack first, and that alongside a bonus to adventuring points gained from quests means that Phoenix heroes will gain stat points faster than any other hero type, with a unique "heroism" stat upgrade that adds to both attack and defence. The Phoenixes also have a special unit tree of bird units, with two branches - one of tougher ground-attack birds, and one of lighter, faster flying birds, including the mighty phoenix itself!

The House of Generals
The House of Generals prize strength, decisiveness, and victory. Prepared to defend the liberty of their cities at all costs, they may have the military might to forge and build a world of peace beyond the horrors that plague the Exile realms. Many folk place their hope in the House of Generals, for they above all others will hold the line against those who would shatter their fragile world. They are the cold steel that guards, the stone wall that shields, and it is their soldiers who may be marching towards the future.

The House of Generals can get the best military power in the game. Their key special ability is to give all unit types an attack boost based on their general's leadership, meaning that later in the game their units can dish out exceptionally high-powered attacks. They also have one of the most powerful ranged units in the game - the arquebusier - as a unique unit, upgrading one of a range of other unit types using their hero's adventuring points.

The House of the Dragon
The House of Dragons play the game of life slowly, carefully, and to win. Their treasuries overflow with gold, and whether they choose to go to war, to adventure, or to politics, they are ready to spend their vast wealth in the pursuit of their goals. Peace-lovers and those who want a quiet world often favour the dragons, preferring smooth gold-brokered diplomacy to the clash of battle or the call of adventure. They are the keepers of flames, the gold-lords, who bring fire against the cold - for when the night is coldest, and the world is poorest, the roar of the dragon is the roar of returning life.

Nobody knows gold better than a dragon! Players with the House of Dragons get a percentage bonus to their gold each week, and can sometimes expend adventuring points to earn bonus gold as well. The Dragons can thus field larger armies (or buy bigger bribes) than any of the other factions.

The House of Scholars
The House of Scholars are the oldest of the Exile houses; reluctant leaders but fierce believers in democracy and learning, they see their twofold role as leaders and teachers as a path of duty. Misfits, the forgotten, and the dispossessed tend to flock to the pangolin banner of the Scholars. They are the seekers after truth, the friends of forgotten things. While there is free air to breathe and a wide world to discover they stand ready to walk in the darkness - and so find the light.

The Scholars' bonuses are primarily to searching - they find it much easier to get results from searching an area for treasures or hireable units - and to information gathering, giving them advantages when digging into the political intrigues of a city. They can also do well at unit training thanks to their unique unit, the pangolin, a medium infantry unit that can add XP to other units based on how much they have earned.

The Exile Princes offers in-depth, procedurally generated worlds with every new playthrough. You can select the map size at the start of each game; the map is divided into different regions, some of which will have cities surrounded by farms, some wilderness, some lakes and seas. There's a lot to explore, and both in cities and on the map the "search area" option can provide unit recruitments, upgrades, quest starts, unexpected challenges, and many other mysteries of this strange manuscript-based world.

The game offers a wide range of different quest types: the rulers of cities frequently have jobs for to do, including deliveries, finding people of interest, bounty hunting, and many more. They're far from the only people who might want the help of you and your army, though. Whether it's pilgrims who need assistance reaching their destinations, merchants with goods to carry, or your own quests sparked by mysterious discoveries around the map, there are many things to do. As you keep doing quests, you will become better known in the various cities around the map which may in turn unlock both more quests and a range of other opportunities!

Units & Battles
Battles in the Exile princes are done in a simple turn-based format, with both player and AI able to nominate one unit for attack and one for defence in each combat round. As you progress, you can find stronger attack and defence units, many of which have powerful special abilities, from cloying gaseous breath to spear-packed schiltrons to raging fireballs! You can hire ordinary citizens in the cities, and different cities have different troop trees, which offer a range of different tactical challenges - pike and crossbow enemies will play out their battles rather differently to a city that specialises in fast-hitting mounted warriors. Units will gain XP as they fight, and can also be trained by NPCs in various ways.

In addition to the many human units, from archers and hired swords to knights and levy guardsmen, there are many specialist and magical units and enemies from right out of the margins of medieval manuscripts. Mighty gryphons and cockatrices can tear through an army of peasants with ease, whilst the ferocious demonic wibulnibs may seem weak but can swamp you with sheer numbers. Familiar creatures of myth like centaurs and dragons rub shoulders with the stranger products of the medieval mind, the frumious lanfyches and whooping quarequares

The Exile Princes offers a detailed character system that includes training up companion characters and detailed generated NPCs who will react to you in different ways based on a number of traits. NPCs found in one situation may at times pop up in another - the noble you had to escort a couple of times earlier in the game may well end up back in her home city and running for election against its ruler a few months down the line - and you can contribute to that, for example by eventually choosing to promote some of your loyal companion characters to city leaders in their own right. Some quests and situations especially rely on companion characters, too, for example the mysterious tunnel networks that lie beneath some cities where only you and your companions can enter without the full might of your army (creating another new tactical challenge...)

A general map shot, playing as the House of Scholars:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The city menu:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Another map shot:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I'm hoping to get an early release of the game out soon, and will devlog in this thread :)
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: comrade_general on March 31, 2018, 06:21:44 PM
Auesum! Why not let G judge the thing so you can win? ;D
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on March 31, 2018, 06:29:30 PM
I own most of the prizes anyway, so I'm fine not winning :P

But yeah, it's going fairly well so far - it's already at a stage where you can wander round the map, meet people, fight, and conquer cities - conquest is the only working victory condition so far (plus that you don't have to conquer cities assigned to your faction at game start ofc). The maps are randomly generated every time so hopefully it'll have some replayability when it's done as well :)

The inspirations for the houses are obvious - other Exilian folk will have other references ingame too though. The boar-like creatures you can see in the first screenshot are the "tusked kinklades", and you can meet Caradilis as a search result in the forest areas of the map (she sells you potions). And there are wibulnibs to fight everywhere. The NPC cities can also be House of Princes and House of the Wolf, but I haven't got any decent ideas for making those playable and don't want to overstretch my plans toooooo much until I've got a release out.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on April 01, 2018, 08:11:52 AM

Looks really cool! I love the style you've used. It looks like interactive medieval art :)

Honoured to get a mention too. I'll feel a bit weird playing it, mind you, if I have to roam the land slaughtering herds of myself!

Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on April 01, 2018, 10:10:58 AM
It very much IS interactive medieval art, all the pictures are taken or adapted from scans of actual medieval manuscripts :)

And yes, sorry, I just looked at that boar-like creature and was like "I can call that a kinklade" and the name stuck in my head rather rapidly, the sound just seemed to fit somehow...
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Pentagathus on May 02, 2018, 05:43:01 PM
What is this blasphemy? How are the wibulnubnibs not recognised bas the true and rightful rulers of this strange land? To arms my fearless wibblers! For death and nibbles!
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: comrade_general on May 02, 2018, 05:50:46 PM
I believe Marcus had something to do with it.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Pentagathus on May 02, 2018, 09:39:03 PM
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on May 02, 2018, 09:59:28 PM
I'm hoping that in later versions the wibulnib stuff will be expanded, including more variants of wibulnib and possibly some related catastrophic invasions/quest lines/etc :)
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on May 16, 2018, 04:39:27 AM
Just had a live playtest session with CG, who I regret to inform everyone has been killed by a manticore.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on May 16, 2018, 07:13:57 AM
Well that is exciting and tragic news, in that order.

Hopefully you got some valuable feedback before he snuffed it?

Great monster to to get killed by though...
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on May 17, 2018, 02:06:03 AM
I did :) The main bit being that I need a minigame for battles of some sort.

I'm thinking of having a four-part screen so both you and your opponent can have 1 unit in each of attack and defence (which can be the same unit), which you can swap round, with stamina losses to stop you keeping your best ones out all the time, and then some options like "flee", "fight next round", maybe occasional special abilities, etc. Does that sound decent?
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on May 17, 2018, 07:55:13 AM
Yeah that sounds like a good idea to me.

So would it be turn based with you chosen units squaring off in a sort of ff RPG stylee except with army troops?
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on May 17, 2018, 05:02:07 PM
Yeah, exactly. I feel like the next step up from that would be a full tactics engine which seems excessive for the style of game.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on June 03, 2018, 11:36:50 PM
I've been back on board the dev train pretty seriously this weekend :)

The main news is that we now have a battle system set up! You can choose your attack and defence units (which can be the same unit or separate) - attack position gives units the chance to gain XP, defence is what takes the pain. So you can just put your best attacker in attack and your best defender in defence? Well, not permanently: being either in attack or defence drain's a unit's resilience, a new stat added to the game. Units that go below 0 resilience start taking stat penalties, hampering their ability to fight. Even veteran warriors or huge monsters, if exhausted from too many rounds of fighting, can be taken down by a unit of fresher but less well trained troops. You'll also be able to expend extra resilience with some troop types to activate powerful special abilities, though that's not implemented yet.

There have been other additions too - I've added more to the cities, so you can now use the "listen for rumours" button more usefully to discover info on the city's different districts, and you'll also get a free "first impression" line every time you walk into a city, which will give you a basic idea about how diverse and how wealthy the city is - cities that value a more pluralist society, or have deep poverty that needs tackling, will want rather different leadership to those that are exorbitantly wealthy, or those that have very traditionalist cultures.

I'm not sure what to work on next - more quests, more city detail, further combat improvements, more unit/enemy types, more diverse terrains etc on the map, more search functions... the possibilities are dauntingly endless!
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on June 04, 2018, 06:43:23 AM
I'm not sure what to work on next - more quests, more city detail, further combat improvements, more unit/enemy types, more diverse terrains etc on the map, more search functions... the possibilities are dauntingly endless!

I'm not surprised - the project's scope sounds insane! Are you doing anything to compartmentalise key features so that you could start releasing if you wanted to or will it just be one beast that you release into the wild some day?

Love the resilience stat idea. Much more specific than just "Tired", "Exhausted" etc.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on June 04, 2018, 09:30:26 AM
I'm not really compartmentalising - my basic strategy is that after every burst of dev work I should try and get everything back to being basically playable again, so after last weekend's burst I have now neatened it back up such that you can validly win a campaign. I'm tempted to do a "release early, release often" strategy, but I find those depressing a lot of the time because I usually get little to no feedback when I do release stuff.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on June 12, 2018, 10:27:56 PM
I've added an improved party morale system this evening - rather than just, you have a morale stat that ticks up slowly over time (faster for characters with higher leadership stat) but drops sharply when you have units wiped out in a battle or when you run out of money to pay your troops. If you're a very successful war leader with a good reputation for paying your troops may put up with not being paid for a bit out of loyalty, but after that they'll get on and desert.

Next step I think is to add more enemy types, quests, and search results, so building up your character and exploring the world becomes a more varied and fun experience :) I've got a lot more to do on the cities and particularly on adding depth to city leader NPCs as well, but I think making the wilderness a bit more varied would be a bigger improvement at present.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on June 17, 2018, 12:06:11 AM
OK, so a fairly decent list of new additions recently:
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on June 25, 2018, 04:25:53 PM
I haven't been posting on the site much lately in part because I've been steaming ahead with this...

Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 02, 2018, 06:33:51 PM
Devlog time again! I'm back to working on cities at the moment.

What's next? Two major areas, also related to cities, before I get out and do more with the exploration side again. One of them is sidequests, which will be found via the "search city" feature. These will allow you to get yourself better known in a city and especially boost your popularity in particular parts of the city, which will give you an important head start if you later want to get elected.

The other area is city management and diplomacy, which is a huge area that I've barely started on. The plan is that you won't be able to micromanage cities: rather, you'll be expected to hold court every so often, and if you leave it too long your relations with your city will decrease. Holding court will give you opportunities (randomised much like those from elections) to shore up support, improve the city, or try and milk more money out of the populace, depending on your strategy. You'll also have the risk of losing what you've gained: if your popularity gets too low, you might well get challenged for another election. If you're at war with another city, you might find your own gets under siege. Meanwhile other cities will be doing exactly the same vis-a-vis one another, with sieges and elections happening elsewhere too. Once I've scripted all that. Eep!

Beyond that, there are a few other obvious areas before a beta is ready: one is defensive skills such as the horse archers' feint ability and the pikemen's schiltron, since I've only implemented the offensive ones so far. I'd also like to add some more general quests and search options, and I think some additional enemy types are definitely needed, including more sizeable enemy parties. A more developed religion-generating system is possible, but might be left until I'm already in beta.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on July 02, 2018, 09:08:49 PM
Sounds great!

Can't believe how much progress you've made. That's a lot of logic you've listed there
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 02, 2018, 09:16:52 PM
I really like coding the logic and mechanics of games, and doing the writing. When I'm doing this stuff I tend to do a lot of very laborious work with nested if statements which make real programmers wince but makes the logical paths very clear on the screen (especially with python + IDLE so it's colour coded too).

Of course I can't do graphics for toast except very simple stuff, which in some ways is a pain as it means I never make anything that looks play-worthy, but it does mean I get the time to produce things with a lot of mechanical depth to them. :)
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2018, 10:17:13 PM
In the evenings this week I've been writing the diplomacy stuff. I'm not initially writing any proper logic to the decision-making, just lots of random "let's go attack this place" so I can ensure that the mechanisms for creating wars, ending wars, and conquering cities all work.

It's taking a while, though most of the basic parts of that are now laid out: a more developed factions system, the ability for factions to make war and peace, emergent factions, new rulers being created and assigned when cities are captured, the deployment of armies, cities replenishing their own armies, etc. Progress, but not very exciting progress!
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: comrade_general on July 08, 2018, 11:38:39 PM
I feel like we should attack the house of generals.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 15, 2018, 07:17:53 PM
Navies now exist so cities can fight each other at sea, and factions now avoid declaring war if they don't have enough troops to hand. Going to add AI elections and alliances as my next steps.

My biggest current problem is dealing with diplomacy for the player's faction, since sometimes the player's own house has starting cities and sometimes it doesn't - do I always treat the player as the decision-maker for their whole house even if that doesn't make much sense when they're just an adventurer? I really don't know the answer to this one.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on July 18, 2018, 07:15:56 PM
Sounds interesting. I'm looking forward to how all this is displayed to the player since it sounds like there is a crazy amount going on!

How does diplomacy manifest for the player? Is it not possible to suppress that if the player has not got any cities yet?
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 22, 2018, 11:41:58 PM
If the player's faction has no cities, then yes, all diplomacy is suppressed. But the player faction can be given AI cities at the start like any of the others, which complicates matters.

In terms of display, there's a log which has readouts. There'll also be a "campsite" menu or similar where the player can review what their character has found out about the world - that's still on the "To Do" list though! Ideally the campsite menu will replace a lot of things for which I currently have console commands - to the extent that I'm half wondering about getting rid of the input field of console entirely at some point, it shouldn't take all that much tweaking for the game to be more or less wholly playable with the mouse. We'll see. I hate doing UI stuff, and I'm feeling quite bogged down in this diplomacy stuff still - I'll be very happy to get back to producing more random encounters and things that feel a bit more like real content.

Updates from today's work: The AI will now ask the player for peace treaties most of the time when they lose a city (and will be more likely to ask other factions for peace in similar circumstances). AI and player factions can also ally and break alliances - this gives a more concrete bonus for the city-state factions (which can't hold multiple cities) when they win a war, as the new city-state faction created after the war will automatically start out as their ally. Allies have a decent percentage chance to declare war on anyone who their allies are already at war with. You can now also assign allied characters to run cities when you capture them by force.

Next up is, I think, some balancing, and new features focusing on why it's important not to try and run every city on the map yourself - specifically that with great power comes great responsibility, and if you want to hold on to a city you own then you need to hold court there, keep it garrisoned, etc. So we'll get the "holding court" stuff, and the ability to look over a city's force and take units from the garrison there when you need them (or leaving your own units garrisoned in a city, equally). Also, the AI will start challenging the player to elections occasionally in cities you hold.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 28, 2018, 09:23:46 PM
Starting to work on city management now. More tweaks done to the tax system, I've set up the city "castle menu" where you get a bunch of extra options as the ruler of a city, and I've got one of those menus - inspecting the garrison - working. In your own cities you can now garrison units, and withdraw or disband garrisoned units. This is especially useful if you gain control of a city by election, because that doesn't damage the garrison at all and they can immediately come under your control. The other big part of this I haven't done is holding court, as mentioned in previous posts, and the trigger for AI-led elections.

The list of tidying up that needs doing is getting disconcertingly long at this point... I think once this is done I need to row back on the feature-additions crusade and spend a good while cleaning up and balancing what I have.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on July 29, 2018, 11:56:08 AM
OK, the AI will challenge you to elections now and that all seems to work OK. You can also choose to not fight the election in which case the AI will pick two random candidates and have a vote between them. The metric for the AI deciding to challenge you is currently just a probability trigger: the next thing to do is to add holding court and the mechanics that affect your popularity in held cities, which will in turn influence how likely you are to get challenged to an election.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on August 03, 2018, 08:34:17 AM
Would it be possible to step down from office and forgo an election, then hurriedly stage a military coup instead?

btw did you intentionally left the exile princes out of your welcome post?
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on August 03, 2018, 09:49:58 AM
The one for this subforum? Not intentional, just haven't updated it recently enough, good catch :)

Possibly, but there's a good chance the election would be won by someone you weren't at war with, in which case you'd have to wait for a pretext to come along to declare it. The general rule is that elections don't constitute an act of war in and of themselves, which can be useful for the player as it allows you to take over enemy cities without starting a massive conflagration. Declarations of war and peace currently have to wait for opportunities to arise - I could add some system to let you declare war arbitrarily at any point, but it would be kind of fiddly and I'm not sure how much more fun it'd make the game.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on August 12, 2018, 10:09:05 PM
OK, in cities you own you can now pay to spend time training and give units XP. It's not very efficient but it's safer than going out in the field and a good sink if you've got lots of money and want to train some troops up. The "hold court" feature now all works - you get opportunities to raise and lower the taxes and garrison size, to give public speeches, and to reassign the city to an ally ruler from your house.

So that's the "city management" all basically working in a rudimentary form! The next two areas to tackle are 1) the "Search Area" button which each city has but is still useless: it will ultimately be a provider of plenty of randomised sidequests etc, and 2) the defensive battle abilities, which need a new menu button and of course to be programmed in to begin with. The most obvious of these will be the "feint" ability of the horse archer unit, which sacrifices additional stamina to make them temporarily invulnerable as they dodge enemy attacks, and the schiltron ability of the pikemen, which will rebound a percentage of damage dealt to them back into an enemy's face (as long as the enemy isn't ranged, and attacked before they did). There's also a third condition to add for gaining control of a city, "protectorate", which will directly convert a city and its ruler to your side after you reach 250 relations with a city. This is probably the most time consuming but also possibly most straightforward way of gaining control of a city for your faction.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on September 03, 2018, 12:53:49 AM
The Search Area button is working, but it's a slow process adding all the relevant stuff to it.

So far the side opportunities are:
> Search ruins/tunnels (both partly implemented but need work and differentiation)
> Hire a cleric (at temples)
> Escort quest escorting a scholar
> Timed goods-handling quest (much like letter delivery but with a time limit & higher payout)
> Weaponsmiths who can upgrade your weapon for 100 gold

Got quite a few more things to go before it's done, but that's some features to start with :)
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Tusky on September 03, 2018, 08:39:13 AM
When you do a search is the area then "exhausted" for a time - or can you just run searches wherever and keep getting randomised (I assume also contextual - e.g. clerics at temples) opportunities?
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on September 03, 2018, 11:23:57 AM
Yeah, these opportunities are all contextual - each city district gets given a single randomised bonus feature, and each of those can spawn certain of these events. The current bonus features are temples, heroic statues, ruins, tunnels, barracks, fortifications, alleys, marketplaces, tanneries, workshops/smithies, libraries and schools (as you can maybe tell they kind of come in thematic pairs). I may add more bonus feature options at some point but I think this list is plenty to be getting on with! Some districts may spawn events based on other features too - for example, there might be some events tied to a district being really poor or really wealthy.

There will be limitations but I'm not sure exactly what, yet. I think mainly I'm going to make searching take a day of game time, much like staying at a tavern does (the game doesn't actually use days as a metric, it's awkwardly calculated by dividing the length of a week by seven and then rounding so sometimes you get six or eight day weeks, but meh). So that gives you some limitation. There should be more limits on things like cleric hiring so you don't end up getting spammed with unemployed clerics, but I haven't worked those out yet.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Phoenixguard09 on September 16, 2018, 10:50:47 PM
I am honestly keen as hell to try this out.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on November 08, 2018, 11:27:22 PM
Finally got some more done this evening - I haven't built the front-end for this yet, but the back-end can now produce (and save/load/handle without issue) arbitrarily sized maps rather than just the 3x3 screens standard I was working with. I'm thinking I'll give players options from 2x2 (small) to 5x5 (giant). :)

Next things on the list:

I'm also wondering if I should actually try building a completely new UI for the game with Pygame or something - I'm worried it would be a complete pain to learn my way around a whole new system, and I've spent so so long getting all the rather many current menus working that it'd be a complete pain to rebuild all of them, but also it just might be nice to make the game a bit graphically neater than tkinter will really allow for. Bit torn on that one.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on November 19, 2018, 11:09:55 PM
The groundwork for defensive battle abilities is mostly in place now :) The hoopoes and horse archers are the two units that have the new feint ability, which lets you spend a stamina point to render enemy attacks useless for a turn (with a catch, namely that it doesn't always work especially if they're faster than you). The next job is to add schiltron, the ability for the pikeman unit, which delivers back to an enemy up to 50% of the damage they did to the pikemen (note to self, need to ensure this doesn't work on ranged enemies). This is an important ability for nerfing the otherwise extreme power of heavy cavalry, and gives them something to be nervous of.
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on November 25, 2018, 11:03:04 PM
Schiltron added, as are two defense-side battle abilities for clerics, one which refills the attack unit's resilience and one which gives the cleric a huge but temporary defence boost. There are also 2 non-battle abilities for clerics - every time you hire a new cleric, you get it randomly determined which ability they have.

The protectorate feature is also now done.

I've changed taverns a bit, so each town district gets exactly one pre-generated tavern at the start of the game, with an actual name. Also, the House of the Dragon can now summon dragons (requires 80 adventuring points and 3000 gold coins). Dragons get a generated individual name when you summon them because they're cool like that :)
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on December 04, 2018, 12:16:49 AM
Been having a bit of an activity burst on this which I don't have time for but am doing anyway.

A new menu - the information menu - has been added. You can actually access most of the info more easily via keyboard shortcuts but I think it rounds off the menus nicely to have it there too and I may find more uses for it later. Also, in the main game the text input has finally bitten the dust - it's still used for the main menu but eventually that will change as well and it'll only appear when you need to e.g. enter your name. The fact you now don't need to type in the main game means loads more keyboard shortcuts exist - you can use WASD for movement, Q to get a readout of quests, R for army, C to save, Z for stats, and so on.

(To do - add keyboard shortcuts to battle mode as well)

That's all been quite a lot of work - the other current focus is improving access to ships, which are currently a pain and involve lots of search rolls, often with players ending up having to just hit the search button thirty times before they can get off a one-tile island. I'm going to leave that hiring system in place, but also add functionality for players to purchase ships when they're at a port, which will fill a sea tile when the player disembarks and will allow them to re-embark easily.

In other words, I'm trying to work a bit on moving this from being a functional game to one that might actually be playable - at some point that's going to mean writing a tutorial as well, which is going to be a complete arse of a job to do. I have massive, massive piles of content I want to add though and that's going to come in pretty soon - I think when I've sorted the main menu and this ships thing I might be ready to package up an alpha release though, most things seem to work more or less OK at the moment even if the content still feels kind of threadbare.

One of the biggest problems I'm getting is introducing enough diversity with the limited range of mechanics. It's hard to find things that personally test a character, given the character isn't much more than a statline and there isn't a very flexible dialogue system. But that can mean that you end up with an awful lot of fetch and carry quests with occasional battles sprinkled in. I feel like there must be better ideas I'm not thinking of, but, well, I'm not thinking of them!
Title: Re: The Exile Princes
Post by: Jubal on May 12, 2019, 05:11:41 PM
Updated first post :)