Release 0.31 (Public) and 0.32 (Patreon Early Access)

This release adds a new fatigue mechanic that is based on how well rested
you are, and the time of day. Getting fatigued will negatively impact combat,
but can be reset with a good night’s sleep. Sleeping in your own bed will
give you a small bonus against becoming fatigued.

When you sleep there’s a chance you may dream. You, the player, remain
in control of the dreaming player character, and get to explore various
dream scenarios. Some of these will be just “regular” kinds of dreams
(or nightmares), others re-live times past or potentially presage the future.
Dreams end after a certain amount of time, when you meet a condition, or if
the dreamer dies (not ideal). Depending on how the dream ends it can have
an impact on the fatigue stat for the following day.

The first dream you are likely to have is a flashback, that begins to exercise
the underlying engine, creating characters on the fly. It also introduces
the first part of the main quest line.

I’ve also managed to achieve “parser singularity”, which was a personal goal
for my own sanity and to improve productivity. Up to this point there have been
four parsers in the game, one dealing with text substitutions and three with
expressions. Due to, well, bugs, these weren’t equivalents to one another,
meaning there were subtle differences in the syntax that caught me out because
I couldn’t remember which one was being used where. There is now just one core
one, so there’s only one syntax to remember (and document), and one set of code
to maintain, and a better set of error handling for when I mess up.

New stuff:

  • Sleeping, dreaming, and fatigue.
  • Added three dreams.
  • First part of main quest.
  • Additional dialog with some villagers.
  • Added goats as a starting species.

User interface stuff:

  • First custom character in game.
  • Fixed some issues in the character creator.

Other bits:

  • Achieved expression and text substitution parser singularity.
  • Fixed an issue with looking at socks on the floor.
  • Added horns, fixed the bodge around noses.
  • Story text is now echoed to the output stream, allowing cut-n-paste if the
    game is run from a console.
  • Further refinement of the combat engine.
  • Fixed a serialization error on an un-searched corpse that was breaking saves.
  • Full cloning of in game items.
  • Partial loading and re-loading of game XML.
  • First steps to allow other games to be built on top of Yaffaif’s engine.

Known bugs:

  • Kobold guards have been caught eating their own “weapons” - it’s emergent behaviour (sort of)
  • If the player dies the game pauses briefly as it runs several in-game hours of “simulation”
  • Starting character sizes may be a little off after changes and need some further tuning

As usual, download from the usual place, and start a new game. Previous saves will not have the new content, and will likely fail to load.

If you would like to support the development you can do so on Patreon where there are a number of different rewards, including walk-throughs, developer documentation, early access, and more…

Release v0.32 (Patreon Early Access) includes:

  • Gods, shrines, and fetishes.
  • Road to Twizelford now open with two paths and the bandit camp.
  • First rough of the farm.
  • Village bandit quest can now be completed.
  • Fertility statue now “works”.
  • Advent dream now room-complete, but not puzzle complete.

Alternatively, if Patreon isn’t your thing I have a tip jar on ko-fi


Sorry for putting this on an old post, but I figured it’d be better here than starting a new thread or replying to a newer update, although maybe that would’ve been better. Regardless, I just started playing again more recently and I was wondering about the first… I guess it’s that initial dream scene you mentioned here, the one where you see your mom and brother before your brother gets captured—I assume that’s what you meant by:

The first thing I wanted to ask is, am I right that this is that dream scene you were referring to? Because, when I first encountered it, I thought it was an introduction scene that was running at the wrong time—I apparently missed the line indicating that it was a dream. So it’d be nice for that to be more apparent.

I was also wondering if there was actually meant to be more to it than just the guards kicking your ass followed by a fade-to-black. I mean, there’s the conversation with Denise, but once you go into the Main Room, it just goes straight into a fight even though there are other interactables that… well, it doesn’t really make sense to “Say Hi” to your brother when guards are attacking both of you, for instance. Perhaps the guards should show-up at a later time, after you’ve had a chance to talk to Eric? There’s also not really a clear set of options for how you respond to the guards, and it’d be nice to see your actions in this scene have sort of impact beyond just how fatigued you are when you wake-up.

Also, I have to ask… should this even be a dream scene in the first place? With it being a critical piece of exposition, you’d think it’d be how the game starts rather than just a flashback. Plus, it’d be a very dynamic opening and could even be used as a way of setting your base stats or giving you starting XP—for instance, trying to talk the guards out of hurting your brother might increase your Intelligence, fighting them might give you more Strength, attempting to seduce them might boost your sexual stats, that sort of thing. Plus, taking the scene a little slower might allow for the introduction of the Guard Captain with a name so he/she can be a starting antagonist.

I could give more specific suggestions for other ways the scene could play-out, but I’ll wait until I know whether any of this is even something you’d be interested in.

Edit: Wait, Alex is the brother’s name, not Eric… Is Eric the MC’s dad, then? Very confused. I’ve noticed that I keep getting different variations of this scene as well, which might be intentional with the sort of puzzle-based nature of the game, but it really doesn’t make narrative sense to the player. I mean, I understand that a character might recall things differently between different flashbacks dreaming about it, but it really doesn’t paint a clear picture.

Yes that would be the one. The game never explicitly calls it a dream:

You get into some bedding and pull up the blanket before falling asleep. You find yourself in the kitchen of your home, but things are different, you mum is here, preparing dinner. This is, …, no, this is that fateful night again isn’t it?

The dream is timed so that you should be able to exhaust the dialogue with your mum (Denise) and dad (Eric - the PC addresses them as mum and dad) and eat at least one of each item off the table. There are (broadly) five outcomes to explore, one of which is what originally happened. Note: if you’ve named yourself Alex, Denise, or Eric the name of one of your family members will be different.

That is a good question, and one I’ve thought much about. I do agree that it would be a dramatic start, but went with the dream option because:

  • The game has a unique user interface, and I wanted the player to be able to get familiar with it before throwing them into combat.
  • Similarly I wanted the player to be familiar with the house layout before having to deal with the guards.
  • The original versions of the game just couldn’t have supported this scene!
  • There was every chance that the PC would die in this scene without realising how to escape, leading to a very short and frustrating game (with no signposting on how to survive). Similarly there’s a very remote chance that the PC would succeed, completing the main quest line, also leading to a very short game!
  • The first time it plays out it is intended to draw attention to the PC’s helplessness in this situation (and provide a drive to gain abilities) while subsequent dreams allow the PC to experience their growing skills, up until the point you would have been able to save your both parents.
  • As it is a dream, and not a flashback, it allows for these different approaches to play out.

I also wanted the player to have some familiarity with the world before deciding how to develop the PC’s abilities. To my way of thinking the rolling and trading of starting stats comes from table top games where there is a party of adventurers and the compromise of starting skills is part of the process in developing the various characters. I don’t think this makes as much sense with a party of one and wanted the PC in this game to be more of a blank slate with a more natural progression.

A future quest line will enable you discover the name of the guard captain, find him, and take your revenge - that’s why he isn’t named in the dream. Your actions in here are intended to influence your reputation/alignment - though I haven’t made a choice on how to model that yet.

I’m open to suggestions though; but it is constrained by the yet-to-be-revealed stuff.

Really? I’ve yet to have a single version of this scene where I get to do anything but talk to Denise—as soon as I enter the Main Room, the guards are already there and in the process of attacking me. Also, the guards don’t appear in the Location or Combat tabs; I’d assumed this was intentional to make the encounter unwinnable, since it is a flashback, but it doesn’t sound like that’s meant to be the case. Note that I’ve only played with .33 & .34, so if it’s a glitch, it may be more recent.

Anyways, you do make some solid points for the dream/flashback version, although I can say the following from my experience so far:

  • The game’s UI may be fairly unique, but it is reasonably intuitive. It’s also not entirely unfamiliar to say, a Quest game. It certainly is more complicated, but I can’t recall ever having trouble figuring-out how to do something.
  • Personally, I find it a little more disorienting that you wake-up in a ruined house without a clear picture of what to do—especially when I’m pretty sure you can get into dialogue about your brother before you even know what happened. On the one hand, I don’t mind learning about events indirectly, but it is a bit disorienting the first time around. Having a bit more direction at the start would be nice, in my opinion; your mileage may vary, though.
  • If you are worried about the player being thrust into a failable scenario without really knowing the system, you could reduce the encounter to a set of simple options (eg. “Run,” “Fight,” “Talk,” etc.) that would play-out a specific chain of events. I have no idea if that would be a good idea or not, but I wanted to field the idea.

This approach does make plenty of sense, and I’m probably just being left wanting for “more-than-cosmetic” customization because (I’m assuming) that sort of thing won’t be in the game for a little while to come. At present, though, playing a radically different character doesn’t really feel all that different.