Burden - Text RPG about demons (and weight gain)

I come with a text rpg, but wait! It is not sugarcube, nor is it quest! It has combat! It has some (rudimentary, to be improved later) dungeon-crawling! It has gratuitous descriptions of fat! It’s all right here, baby:
(Windows only until I upload mac builds at some point)

Okay, now that my pitch is done, this is a remake of a game I started a year and a half ago and spent some time developing here – but don’t bother looking at that old link, as this version includes everything that was in it, but more polished and easier to interact with. The original game sprang a memory leak in the code somewhere that made further development not fun to think about, as well as being hated by some computers, so in February I decided to finally remake the game in Godot. I just caught development up to where I was before, minus a few features that I decided were not fun, though I did make up for it by redoing combat, as well as adding a bunch of bells and whistles.

The basic synopsis is that you play as the scion of a disgraced noble family in a country which is currently struggling to handle a creeping demonic incursion into their territory. Seeing a way to escape the destitution of your house, you run off to the front, and this game is about what happens once you arrive. What exactly happened to your house? What exactly do the demons want? Why aren’t the demons causing more turmoil? Well, there are no answers included in the game at this point, but if there is interest, I will continue developing the game. This was the major tedious work, but I believe I have built all the backend utilities I will need in the future, so adding more content will be much more streamlined.

The current version of the game includes:

  • Sudden weight gain
  • Descriptions of obesity
  • Teasing/mocking
  • Sadistic demons
  • Two endings to the current content
  • Florid prose that I will go back and gut at some point
  • A bug when talking to a certain NPC that does not break anything but makes you click twice which I am too lazy to fix today
  • Other stuff I can’t remember

I welcome any feedback on this monstrosity, and will probably take it into account should I add more content down the line. I only post major updates here and respond to other comments, but I will try to post minor updates more frequently on twitter at this account.

24 Likes

I’ve only played like a minute or two so far, but I thought the text sounded familiar. I loved the original concept and am excited for more development on this game you have. The menuing in the original was funky and am glad that you took time to spiffy it up.

2 Likes

The game really needs a save/load function, and the ability to run from fights. Once I got past the ‘intro’ and went into the forest I got stuck in a fight with a giant flower because it lowered my attack too much to win, and there was no way to actually get out of the fight.

Also, when I went back, and said no to approaching the flower, trying to do the encounter again and saying ‘yes’ didn’t work, it just kicked me out of the encounter like I said ‘no’. The same thing happens with the exits in the forest. Stuck again.

8 Likes

The encounter menu not working with the flowers and the exits is a problem I had exactly once in bug testing and promptly forgot about until you just mentioned it. I already found the flag I forgot to set that causes that particular bug, and I’ll put up a fix for it tomorrow evening, hopefully with a save/load menu added to the game.

5 Likes

Oh, I remember playing the old version. As Korota says, the game needs a save function, it’s an RPG after all (but unless it’s a 5 min experience there should always be a save function in a game), I also encountered his same bugs. I really like the concept and the execution. It has been more exposition than dialogues focused so far, but it may be a good idea to use different colors and/or formatting when different characters are talking. Also the first time I went against the boar I lost and I had -1 health, but the game continued like I killed it. I don’t want to pressure you but when designing the save system try to make it so that even if the game bases aren’t fully developed (in-game) so far, make sure that the building blocks are already there for simpler future use and compatibility with newer releases.

I like where this is going. Best wishes for future developments :+1:

4 Likes

I suggest that you make the choices box at the bottom a numbered list and make the numbers functional hotkeys. That’s how rpg’s did it in the 90s. Makes it faster to play. Yes you only need that speed if you’re not reading, and thus missing out on the game entirely, BUT, what about all the times you’re repeating an action? Or starting a new game? If you’ve already read the text it’s much easier to hit 1111212 than

down arrow enter down arrow enter down arrow enter down arrow down arrow enter… etc

edit: of course this would also VASTLY speed up combat, combat is WAY too slow as it is, just in terms of human inputs. click is slow, and hitting down arrow key then enter is much slower than just hitting one button like 1 or spacebar or enter alone would be.

2 Likes

i’ll agree with you their, you can get easily soft locked into the plant fight if you don’t upgrade your attack early on

2 Likes

And I’ve reached a part of the game that is unplayable. I cannot exit, and I cannot approach a flower. On this screen whenever text pops up choosing option1 or option2 it doesn’t matter nothing happens and I return here.

The only thing I can think that could be the cause is that I didn’t randomly happen to run into any enemies on my way from the town to the campsite (through the first such forest area).

Perhaps as a result of missing this first random encounter a variable flag wasn’t set and now this run is broken.

I’ll start over on the next update. Although, if the game had save functionality, I could upload my save file, so you could see the issue/bug for yourself, would be a useful debug tool.

2 Likes

New upload in the mega link! The suggestions were so great that gee whiz I implemented most of them in the bugfix. In particular:

  • There’s a saving and loading utility. You can now save the game at any time you are not talking to an NPC, fighting, in a dungeon, or doing anything that means you see the “Continue…” prompt at the bottom of the screen. You can save by pressing the “s” key; try it! You load in a similar way, using the “r” key, but it is additionally possible to load after being killed in a fight. The system only allows for one save file at the moment, but I will add a few more later. Why not now? Well, I have to get back to Leyndell…
  • The bug when being stuck in the forest should be fixed. I tightened up the logic that was causing it, which was related to what sort of response the game believed was needed after certain types of inputs.

Good idea! It’s done, and it works with the regular numerals and the numpad.

Tell me if something is not working correctly, and I will look at it once more.

5 Likes

Seems neat so far, but got caught in an endless loop with the bellflower.
I can’t hit it when attacking offensively, when I’m in a neutral stance I can’t deal enough that I can even outpace it’s self healing, and defensively is for cowards.

I love your writing it was pretty fun read and stuff!

saving and reloading is a great feature, albeit incredibly bugged, every time i seem to reload something seems to softlock. Like if i reload to the state right after the demon tells me to eat the carcass, she’ll despawn, i can’t eat the carcass and i’m softlocked.

1 Like

Hm, I have an idea of what causes this, and it should be an easy fix. I will look at it later and try to upload a fix soon.

I was thinking about how to handle this, and I think I will add escapes from non-important fights in the next update, with a penalty to weight. I originally intended the looping to occur as a way of forcing proper levelling, and making sure people don’t just get fat as soon as possible, which is good for making the player sympathize with the character for the “damn I do not want to get fat” angle as well as making it more juicy in the longer scenes when something fetishy occurs. I am no longer sold on this idea since people seem to not enjoy it, which is the most important thing.

The next big update I do will include attacks that gain some damage at higher weights to offset the loss to attack from getting fat, and I may decrease the debuffs to attack from higher weights. However, I can tell you for that fight in particular that there are a few interesting facts about the game: for one, in this game, if an enemy goes into a defensive stance, any attack from an offensive stance will always be entirely blocked. Second, the bellflower will always go into a defensive stance the instant it sees you go offensive, so a neutral stance is your best bet to deal damage. Third, when I playtest that section from the start of the game, I put all my points from the boar into attack and spam attack on the bellflower from a neutral stance.

2 Likes

Good stuff. I’ll be keeping an eye on updates to this :ok_hand: :ok_hand:

2 Likes

Glad to see this project is alive and kicking again! But I have to ask: am I just stupid or is getting the 2nd ending very difficult? I got the dryad to teach me the forgotten art of the demons, but I haven’t found anyway to use it or even to do anything else outside of fattening up the dryad? Am I missing something or did I mess up a sequence?

4 Likes

You are not stupid! It is pretty hard! I am a sucker for nonobvious nonsense, unfortunately. You are doing good, though, because (hint) the art is the most elaborate part of that ending. For the other part, you just need some confidence. Confidence to say bold things to someone who probably does not want to hear them, for example. I have heard the best way to build confidence is to ape it, perhaps by saying bold things in conversation beforehand. Fake it till you make it, as they say.

2 Likes

Stuck in a new way, approached my first flower, game stopped progressing or responding.

No save file in the folder with the game so I cannot send one to you.

After getting stuck I restarted the exe and then went to the first point I could hit r to load my save, and then loaded my save and tried to talk to the settlement leader and got:

SCRIPT ERROR: leaderChat: Invalid operands ‘float’ and ‘int’ in operator ‘%’.
At: res://People.gdc:946

so saving is also broken, at least if you close the exe (which I did because the game got stuck)

New version uploaded. My brain is rippling, surging from the bugfixing that I just performed. I should probably have a modicum of professionalism and document changes better, shouldn’t I? No time to start doing so like now. You will have to make a new save for this version, as I was mucking around with the format of the save itself.

Changelog: v0.1.3

  • Fixed a major bug wherein the game would not load from a checkpoint properly upon closing and reopening the game, as well as removing a bug that made loading buggy when reloading from within the game with no closures
  • Tightened some of the internal logic of the save utility so that it records whether entry events are active, and loads them accordingly
  • Rewrote the plant encounter logic so that there are hopefully no more locks upon finding the encounter – but if there are, hey, at least loading works now!
  • Sanitized some parts of the loading utility so that there should not be any problems when talking to npcs

I should have fixed the relevant issue, but if I did not, the save exists where Godot wants all associated resources with the game to exist, which by default is %APPDATA%\Roaming\Godot\app_userdata\Demons Redux.

In the likely event that something is still busted with any of the fixes I just performed, tell me and I will dive back into the fray.

5 Likes

game still doesn’t work. no random enemies in first forest, second forest cannot defeat flowers despite taking attack at 100% of opportunities, talked to everyone bunches, cannot progress plot, possibly the bug lies in the sneaking past dryad code.

is this suffient to trace the error?

Hmm, that’s odd. The lack of enemies in the forest is not a bug, there really are no encounters there. I decided they did not add much to the game and removed them compared to the previous version. The difficulties with the flower are strange though.

For the flowers: what exactly happens in the fight? Are you damaging them? If so, are they dying when reaching 0 HP?

If you are not damaging them and they are just blocking every move, check your options for actions during the battle. If you do not have the option to switch to an offensive stance, then you are already in an offensive stance from a previous battle, in which case the flower will just block you every attack. Switch to a neutral stance to fix this and deal damage. If this is not what is happening, it is something odd and I will probably need a bit more information. The save is extremely minimal so that the game can run on a potato, so it does not tell me very much.

Minor spoiler, but as regards the lack of content, of the two endings to current content, in your file, you will have access to only one of them, and to progress to that one, you need to kill flowers. There will be no new dialogue until one of them dies, so the apparent lack of content is not so much a bug itself as a result of the flower not dying.

I was using offensive stance because I thought it would counteract my reduced atk, I must’ve misunderstood the stats. It seemed like offensive stance increased damage but I guess blocking counters it, my bad!

edit: So offensive stance beats neutral, neutral beats defensive and defensive beats attack?

Could maybe rename them to something like parry riposte attack or some such? because offensive makes me think bonus atk not rock from rock paper scissors.

I guess the boar was supposed to be a tutorial on this, but I just saw the boar go defensive, and countered with offensive, then didn’t want to waste an entire turn changing stances and stayed offensive to finish the boar.

Imo it makes sense if it wastes a full turn for it to work the way I thought it worked, if it costs 0 turns it makes sense to work like rock paper scissors. In fact maybe remove stances entirely and just let the player choose aggressive attack round, neutral stance round, defensive round? If it didn’t cost a turn I think it would function better as rock paper scissors (also you don’t have to worry about choice overload now that players have hotkeys for 1/2/3 for three types of combat round choices, which might’ve been why you wanted the stance to mode to consume a turn so players could just hit attack attack attack?)

Feel free to ignore me though, but, well, I was 100% wrong about how the mechanics worked, so if you don’t agree with me, maybe at least drop more hints for fools like me?

1 Like