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Aureus

Roadwarden [Fantasy/RPG Elements/Pixel Art] [DEMO]

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I have just this little thing to share, a hidden in-game detail.

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Not every character starts the game with this item, and I’m sure some players won’t notice its hidden interaction. If you wear it, various NPCs react to your presence in new ways.

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So, are you going to wear it all the time, proud of your beliefs? Are you going to keep it hidden, hoping to avoid quarrels? Is it just a tool for you, something that you hide or show depending on who’s around you?

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How do you play your role?

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I’ve been working a lot on the new title screen, and I think that after receiving a lot of very helpful feedback, it’s in a pretty good spot right now. : )

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I’m also doing a whole bunch of minor things for the game, since I can hardly find enough time and patience to focus on writing dialogues. I’m adding quests, items, some new dialogue options... I had a really good flow with some ideas, like these two weapons:

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I’ve also realized that my original plan of “fitting every bit of dialogue in a single window” won’t work. Some NPCs will just have too many dialogue options available if you meet them for the first time in a very late part of the game. Because of that, I’ve decided to add the optional scrolling - it will show up only if there’s something to scroll through, so it won’t impact the major experience.

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Through this week, I wrote sooo many dialogue bits, made new items, designed new quests and broadened some older content... I’m in the flow, and it feels good.

Here’s an example of how arriving to a new place looks like. My lizard brain tells me to stop overcomplicating things, but I’m more like... Nah, “how bout I do anyway”. ; )

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And here are some examples of how do the later parts of the same conversation look like.

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The development has recently encountered a couple of obstacles and pitfalls, but guess what. I *think* the new version of the demo is working. : ) It still needs some additional testing, would you like to help me with that?

You can download it here!

Does it start for you, can you play it? At one point, the Mac version was crushing out after saving. I hope it’s fixed. : P

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And if you wonder what has changed since the last version but you plan to wait for the full game, here are some highlights, just for context:

  • the available content has tripled - you can visit four new areas (each one is significantly different) and engage in three complex dialogues that they involve
  • a completely new music was introduced
  • the in-game journal now includes a chapter that summarizes interesting clues related to various NPCs
  • the inventory screen is completely redesigned and much more convenient
  • area illustration and inventory icons were updated
  • text parser that don’t need to support capital letters, like the one in the dolmen, don’t use them anymore
  • various bits of dialogues and interactions were enhanced
  • various spelling / phrasing fixes
  • new menu screen
  • bugs were eliminated - unless?
Edited by Aureus

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I’ve reached a rough spot, since as I share more WIPs from my game, my posts get more and more spoilerish... I need to figure out a new approach. But here is something more casual that I’ve been working on this week! : )

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In the original “Roadwarden’s” Design Document, there were no game-overs. You could get significantly hurt during your journeys, but never to the point where you’d face a brick wall that would make the further progress impossible. You need to rest and heal your wounds to participate in some events, but you can always move forward.

I’ve finally decided to change it. In most situations, reaching 0 HP won’t result in an instant death. But in some scripted encounters - usually when facing an overwhelming opponent while being completely unprepared - your character will be broken.

Still, I hope to make it as player-friendly as possible. Did you forget to save your game? Was autosave ran in an inconvenient spot? You can jump back in time a bit, no strings attached.

The game now also involves some new systems, like a redesigned “armor level”. I’ll talk more about it in the next devlog.

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Roadwarden looks much better now, all thanks to the new font. : ) The text has more space to breathe, the letters have more personality, and thanks to the serifs, it’s going to be easier to keep track of the lines you read. Everybody wins.

Other changes were introduced as well, such as the new addition to the inventory screen - when you now point at any icon, the item’s name is instantly displayed, so you don’t have to click anything if you try to quickly find something in your equipment.

I currently write dialogues, quests and stores for the game’s largest area, it’s quite exhausting, and I try to avoid spoilers. : P However, you can expect more posts very soon.

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For this ScreenshotSaturday, I have a rather large update. And a lot of pictures to show. Too many for a forum post. Oh dear, that must mean... It’s devlog time!

And here it is!

I wrote about the map updates, the new armor system, UI adjustments, the new Journal, the most recent WIPs, and recapped the stuff related to the game over screens and the new font.

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I took a little break from writing and drew some new areas. One of them is this abandoned fishing hamlet that I really like.

Places like this one are somewhat common in this fantasy realm. No village can have access to all the goods it requires to prosper, but daily travels for additional resources can turn out to be fatally dangerous. If a village has enough working power and supplies, it will sometimes start a new, small settlement focused on a specific field of work.

You can find among them mines, quarries, and brickworks, but also houses for hunters, lumberjacks, and charcoal burners, as well as temporary shelters for workers who build bridges or roadside inns. The fishing hamlet we see here allowed the locals to fish, and to preserve their meat by curing and smoking.

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The game has grown tremendously, though I try to keep everything spoiler-free. : )  For now, how about a tune?

We want our music to be subtle, not bluntly cheerful, nor overwhelming tense. The today’s example is on the “brighter” side, but we still tried to hide some uncertainty in it. Is “post rock folk” a thing?

 

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Villages in Roadwarden are secluded and often self-sufficient, doing their best to utilize their landscape and the nearby resources to their advantage. This also results in the common distrust of strangers, especially of those who attempt to shake the status quo.

Even the smaller settlements need to have their guard up, but the high walls are often not enough to keep the beasts, undead, and highwaymen at a distance.

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I’ve made some fantastic progress this week, but I’m especially happy with introducing the new continue button. One of the best things about making a game that doesn't use a lot of hardware is that you can make it run almost instantly. You won't have to remember where has your last save occurred or which save slot you have used - just click and play.

Also, I don’t think there will be a reason to add some semi-skippable animated company logos whenever the game launches, so all it takes from the moment you press the game’s icon to the moment you’re in is like 10-15 seconds. : P

 

Edited by Aureus

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The Clean Spear inn. From February 2019 to May 2020.

If you think it’s an improvement, you should see the game’s writing. I’ve been grinding some juicy level ups.

(New, probably the last, version of demo coming this month.)

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The new version of Roadwarden’s demo is now available on Steam.

An additional area to explore, more things to do, better writing, upgraded UI, improved visuals. I’d love to know what you think. : )

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