Category: Weekly Updates
Well, hello there.
This last week has really flown by for me; I have no idea what happened to it or even what I've DONE this week! Or maybe it just feels shorter because it's not as long since I last wrote a news article?
Anyway, MARDEK 3 still needs a lot of work doing on it, and I've yet to contact sponsors or anything like that. I'll try to do that this week after I've finished some of the most significant fixes that I need to make.
I've got a huge To Do List of things compiled from feedback from the beta testers, which I'm working on. But it is indeed huge... There are 295 items on it, of varying difficulties (ranging from minor tweaks and typos to significant amounts of writing or even huge changes in mechanics), of which I have only done 39 so far; that's 13%. I may put a progress bar on the main page of this for all to see.
And speaking of the main page, I need to remove that February release date, because that's just not going to happen at this point. Next month is... probable, but I don't know for sure. Release is definitely less than TWO months away, though (and it'd be closer if I didn't have to worry about sponsorship)...
Annoyingly though, apparently my girlfriend is coming here for another trip in two weeks! Well, I say 'annoyingly', but we're both greatly looking forward to it because we only get to see eachother for a few weeks a year, but it is annoying in that it is ill-timed and will probably affect the release of MARDEK 3 somewhat.
It was originally meant to be in April or some time like that, but when we started organising it properly and everything, we found that there are no places available for long enough during that time so we had to pick earlier dates.
She's coming the weekend after next for five weeks, and, as usual, we'll be staying in a rented place rather than at my house, BUT, unlike other times, this time I'll be taking my computer with me so I can still work on games. So getting work done on MARDEK is not a problem.
What IS though is the internet. At home, my internet is decently fast most of the time (even if it's nowhere near as fast as I'd like), but staying in a rented place gives us no direct internet access, and we have to use one of these 'get the internet anywhere!', uh, 'dongle' things, which you plug into your computer to pick up what's essentially a long-range radio-like signal, but it seems to function only at DIAL-UP speeds; last time I used it, it took like five minutes to load this website!
And considering that at home it takes a second to load this site, and 20 minutes to upload MARDEK 3 to the server, it may take all day to upload it using that dial-up thing, if I can even upload it at all.
I'll try to get it done in the next two weeks so then I don't need to make regular updates, or, if I'm still not done by then, I'll try going to internet cafes or libraries and uploading it from there or something. But I don't know what I can promise, so a worst-case situation is me being unable to upload it during those five weeks and having to wait until after them. Anyway, uh, we'll see!
This is really all badly timed though, sorry... D:
Hmm, what else?
Oh, right! The Soundtracks that I mentioned earlier this week have generated a surprising amount of money, apparently! I don't know if I should mention my earnings here, but it''s not an insignificant amount, and some of the few people who bought them at all were EXTREMELY generous, paying many times the asking price, so THANK YOU so much! You raise my opinion of humanity as a whole and give me hope and stuff!
However, the sales of the chapter 2 OST were rather disappointing...
I only sold 5 copies of the chapter 1 one, but only 3 of the chapter 2 one, which I thought people would want more, for the secret tracks... I am wondering if lack of awareness is a factor, with people just not seeing it, or whether the ones who bought the chapter 1 one had little interest in it in general and just paid because they wanted to show appreciation, which is fair enough. I'm not complaining or trying to seem ungrateful or anything, but it is sort of exciting to get money from sales and it'd come in very useful at this point in time, I think, since I've not made a significant amount in a while and then I spent most of what I own on this trip...
So, uh, in the hope of more sales, I will now link to the soundtracks again! Here, these images are also links:
Oh, I also added a 'Merchandise' link to a CafePress shop that I made a while ago for the site, but which I never linked to because I felt that its wares were too expensive and I've only got an Eye of YALORT shirt up for sale so far. I'll get around to adding more types of shirts and things at a later date though, if I can actually think of any desirable designs that people would pay that much for...
(I've no idea how much clothing usually IS, which is perhaps why those prices seem too steep to me, but I can't do much about them without making no money, and I only make like $5 profit for selling a $30 shirt anyway.)
Hmm... There's some significant change to the mechanics of MARDEK that I mentioned to testers, but I suppose I'd be curious about the opinion of others, too.
Currently, MARDEK 3 uses the same Reactions system as the previous chapter, where you assign offensive or defensive reactions to the A, S or D keys, then use one of those three keys when hit or hitting.
However, I've never really been fond of this, since it requires you to remember which reactions everyone has, and I always end up using whatever is on A without really noticing what I'm using until it's been used (does anyone else do this?).
So what I came up with instead was a way for all reactions to only use one key (probably X or something)...
There could be four 'types' of reaction: Physical Attack, Magical Attack, Physical Defence, and Magical Defence. The appropriate one would always be triggered depending on the circumstances, so if you're hit by a magical attack, you just need to press X and it'll trigger your Magical Defence reaction, always.
To make it interesting though, each type of reaction would have a list of skills, and you could 'equip' MULTIPLE skills for that reaction, each one with a distinct 'cost' (in 'Reaction Points', or RP), effectively allowing you to customise reactions.
For example, you could have learned three Physical Reactions skills, which are these, with their costs:
DMG+10% - COST 2
DMG+20% - COST 6
Add PSN 10% - COST 5
Say you have 8 'Reaction Points' (I suppose these would be determined by level or something). That means you could equip DMG+10% and DMG+20% to have your attacks do +30% more damage, or you could equip DMG+10% and Add PSN 10%, to have your attacks do 10% more damage and also have a chance of poisoning opponents. Both of these skills would trigger every time you reacted while delivering a physical strike.
To equip reactions, you'd just go through the list like before, but instead of pressing A, S or D to assign that to them, you'd instead just press X and the skill would turn off or on (unless you didn't have enough RP; then you'd hear an error noise).
Each reaction type would have its own store of RP, probably of the same amount, so a character could have '8 RP' but it means they could spend 8 points for each reaction type, rather than 8 points between them all.
If I did this, I could make all characters have the same selection of Reaction skills to learn from, unlike currently where each character has their own unique set, usually with duplicate skills; I never liked having to give items things like 'Magic Sword: DMG+20%' AND 'Spellbladery: DMG+20%'; I'd much rather have given the item just 'DMG+20%' for everyone who could learn it...
If I did this, I could also add a set of 'passive' skills that characters could equip and they'd be constantly active, sort of like equipment. For those of you familiar with Final Fantasy IX, think of the equippable skill things in that, like Beast Killer, etc.
Items like the Snakestone - which protects 100% against poison - would offer that full protection when equipped, but might also have a learnable passive skill like 'Resist PSN 20%', which you could cheaply equip, so that when you removed the Snakestone and you'd mastered that skill, it'd be sort of like some of that item's magic had 'rubbed off on you'...
Of course, your RP for these skills would be limited. And these passive skills would consist mainly of stat boosts and things rather than things like DMG-20%, which would be limited to defence-type reactions.
This is a major change and might take a while to do (well, hopefully only a few hours, but still), so should I try? If I'm to do it at all, now is the best time, because I don't want to make a major change in the next chapter as it'd make saves from THIS one possible incompatible (or you'd lose all your reactions, at least).
If the consensus is that it's a good idea, I'll do it.
So, uh... back to work now, I suppose! I'll add that progress bar thing to the front page!
UPDATE: I've actually added this new reaction system to the game now; it took about a day. It's all working fine, but I still need to add many of the skills to the game, on items. Now let's see what the beta testers think of it...