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Hawkey;

 

1) The core team was small- maybe...10 or 11 people. The contract writing team was much larger, however- well over 50.

 

2) We are very international: US, Brazil, Europe, Oceania- but the company is US. We plan to set the release as midnight, Pacific Standard Time, 8/12/10. GamersGate, though, being in Sweden, may have it earlier. We'll see if we can coordinate. :rolleyes:

 

3) Academagia began actually before 2007 (spring of 2006, as I recall), but the company was formed in that year.

 

4) So do I. :D There are some steampunk elements, although sadly the most interesting ones (building and designing clockwork pets) was removed early in development. In the sequel, I hope that will return.

 

5) The actual inspiration came from Ursula Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea and Tamora Pierce's Alanna series. In both books, we always wanted to know more about the actual universities, which are somewhat kept off-page, and what it might like to study magic.

 

6) <laughs> No hints, but the non Student related Adventures all revolve around a 'main event' which is hinted at. You can fully resolve the Adventures to see different perspectives on the strange goings-ons, and our hope is that you will be able to build upon your successes (or failures) in the sequels. As much as possible we want player choice to figure into these, as with the rest of the design.

 

7) I mostly answered this in #6, but yes. The overarching story for all 5 games was worked out in 2006 -even before the mechanics, in fact- because we wanted to make sure we had the best chance to carry forward player choice.

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I really shouldn't post my question and then edit them afterwards. Perhaps you coould check again my questions and your answers - seems quite confusing ^^

 

@overarching story: So there will be some "quests" which you can't end in the first part and which isn't really pointed out to continue next year ? Really like the "suprising-moment" when you get the satisfaction to solve them later on, after you allready abandoned it - since you thought you missed a key event in the past :rolleyes:

 

By the way: there are still 2 well-known sites that would probably review Academagia. I personally can you recommend TIGSource, but I also know that Kotaku would point it out (~ it's more a AAA title site but with a few good articles and a positive attitude for unique game-styles / after RPS) :D

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Yeah, that is a little confusing. :rolleyes:

 

About saves: You can only save on the Calendar Screen, so you cannot save/reload Random Events. You could do that for Adventures, though, if you wanted to.

 

Thanks for the suggestion on TIG and Kotaku- we have actually contacted both, but no response yet. If you have any contacts with either, please don't hesitate to let me know. :D

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Yeah, that is a little confusing. :)

 

About saves: You can only save on the Calendar Screen, so you cannot save/reload Random Events. You could do that for Adventures, though, if you wanted to.

 

Thanks for the suggestion on TIG and Kotaku- we have actually contacted both, but no response yet. If you have any contacts with either, please don't hesitate to let me know. :)

 

Whom do you send the Mail ? Derek got often many stuff to do and unfortunately less time he probaly should have :)

 

I've got in contact with Paul Eres (~ Immortal Defense and Saturated Dreamers) and Terry (VVVVVV), which write at TIG from time to time. Recommend to adress them instead and tell about Academagia along with an offer to review it. Say if still no one reacts and I try it myself :rolleyes:

 

~ E-Mail ~

 

=> Paul (= rinkuhero) : rinkuhero at gmail.com

=> Terry : terry at maths.tcd.ie

 

______________________________________________________________

 

 

Just like to repeat my former note, so it doesn't get down:

I read at your Facebook page that you recently finished a player guide. Would be great if you could release together with the game some nice bonus material like Wallpapers, school-grounds-map, OST - not just the lower down sampled tracks in the game folders - or such stufff (*starringatyouravatar*) :D

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Hawkey;

 

Thanks for the contacts- Derek Yu was the person we tried to reach; as you say, he may be busy. We'll get into contact with Paul and Terry this afternoon. :rolleyes:

 

As to Facebook, we might do a Wallpaper (could be fun), but a map of the school grounds may be out of reach. The OST is definitely out of reach since we license classical music, and it does not extend beyond the game.

 

For general interest, though, here is an unfinished map of the grounds:

 

http://steamrobin.deviantart.com/art/Acade...d-Map-119427901

 

Enjoy! :D

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As to Facebook, we might do a Wallpaper (could be fun), but a map of the school grounds may be out of reach. The OST is definitely out of reach since we license classical music, and it does not extend beyond the game.

 

For general interest, though, here is an unfinished map of the grounds:

 

http://steamrobin.deviantart.com/art/Acade...d-Map-119427901

 

Enjoy! :rolleyes:

 

Wow, thanks. Looks really amazing and gives quite an overview :)

 

Will a finished version of the map be in the game ? Did you integrated somekind of "quick-travel-system" through such a map ?

 

By the way: I just now read your answer about the group size and got really suprised. It's quite different to have such a large development team in an Indie work (~ no just the temporary 50 writers but more the still 10-11 permanents). Guess they all did their best and deserve attention - therefore the higher price would just be fair. This totally different from other Indie works - were the group often consists of 3-4 people :D

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Hawkey;

 

No, unfortunately the map was not able to make it into the game. I believe we will finish it and place it on the site, though, as a fun point of reference. I'd really like to have the map be point and click in the future- as well as have a few other fun features. :rolleyes:

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Hello,

i saw this game on Gamer's Gate a couple of days ago and got interested. There are some bad reviews on the internet, but they seem to miss the point. One is very amateurish, talking just about the interface and even suggesting Starcraft II as an alternative - both games involve pressing buttons on a mouse, I think. The other accuses the game of having too much text. In a text-based adventure/rpg. How shocking. So, I think i will purchase and try the game myself. Since I write for an italian game magazine I might end up reviewing it (I understand you can't send review copies all over the world :rolleyes: ). If it is any good, that is. So, I have two questions:

 

1) Off the bat, I can think of two games that might compare to Academagia: Princess Maker and King of the Dragon Pass. The second one is really great, and it is a shame that nobody makes something similar anymore. Are some of the idea behind these two games in Academagia? Or, can you point other games that inspired you?

 

2) Is the game aimed at young children, really simple and cute-looking, or it has some measure or realism (magic realism :D), strategic depth, rpg-ish character building? An adult gamer may still enjoy it? I am not really understanding if Academagia is mostly a casual game like Virtual Villagers and stuff like that or something else.

 

thanks

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Xenos;

 

Thank you very much for your support! If you pm me your site and your e-mail address, I believe we can arrange a review copy for you, if you prefer. :rolleyes:

 

1) You are entirely correct about our influences, although the game owes more to Tokimeki Memorial (minus the romance) than Princess Maker. King of Dragon Pass was a truly amazing game that showed how imaginative games could be if freed from common limitations and genres. It *is* a pity no more of these are being made. :D

 

2) The game is very deep, fully featured and allows more customization of your character than virtually any game before it- I think I can state this without hyperbole! The art style is art nouveau and neo-classical (as you may have seen in the screenshots), and a (magical) reality underlies the setting. The game is intended for both children and adults, however- we simply do not accept that a game (especially of this type) cannot simultaneously allow both groups to enjoy it. :)

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The game is intended for both children and adults, however- we simply do not accept that a game (especially of this type) cannot simultaneously allow both groups to enjoy it. :)

 

Very true, I for one enjoyed very much Viva Pinata, not exactly a gritty, mature-oriented game :D

But there are certain conventions in game making and most games aimed at children end up being dumbed down. So I asked. I sent you a PM :rolleyes:

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Lots of game documentation sound rather awkward...

 

"At the end of the day, if you have any Stress, you must take a Fitness Attribute + [best Class Skill] Roll"

 

What does the [best Class Skill] stand here for?

 

Also description of "Minor Focus" Ability: "Increase Stress Maximum". What is "Stress Maximum"? Is it simply added to the Fitness+Skill roll? Documentation mentions that there is no limit to how much stress you can take.

 

 

Also "Gentle Doctor" action Effect: "Expand Stress", "Expand Stress", "Expand -1 Stress". What does that one is supposed to mean? Just +1 to Stress? It'd be helpful, if similar effect were congregated into one numbered effect...

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Elwin;

 

Yes, I agree: some of the in-game documentation could use some streamlining.

 

[best Class Skill] refers to the highest value of your actual Class Skills (the Skill related to the 6 Classes you chose to take).

 

Your Character has a (hidden) statistic determining how much Stress you can handle before falling Ill. Stress Maximum increases this number, so you can take a little more Stress. :lol:

 

The reason that Gentle Doctor shows those Effects is because it has a variable amount of Stress it gives you for using it- in some cases it can actually reduce that amount (in this case by 1), if you really Roll well. I agree the Effects could be better named- when we do a content patch, I'll take a look at it myself.

 

Thanks!

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[best Class Skill] refers to the highest value of your actual Class Skills (the Skill related to the 6 Classes you chose to take).

 

Ah, I see, thanks. Problem is, they are almost nowhere called "Class skills" in-game. The very least you can do is to add coloured "CLASS SKILL" tags to description of selected skills...

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This game looks fantastic! One question, since you do not offer a demo to determine if the game functions correctly, do you have a refund policy in case of technical issues? $25 is rather a lot to spend on a game unseen.

 

PS You've been featured on Gamezebo.com, which is where I read about your game. :lol:

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Ashrayne;

 

Great! I am glad you found us!

 

In the case of technical issues, I am sure we can arrange a refund. :lol:

 

Elwin;

 

Research is primarily for Lores, and has 10 Levels. On the 10th level, however, there is a non-Lore bonus effect, usually a very desirable Attribute increase. I *believe* in our first content patch you will see a few more effects stemming from Research. ;)

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Research is primarily for Lores, and has 10 Levels. On the 10th level, however, there is a non-Lore bonus effect, usually a very desirable Attribute increase. I *believe* in our first content patch you will see a few more effects stemming from Research. ;)

 

Hope the "content Patch" will also contain some game fixes (~ see text issues and mouse-clicks). Moreover there seems to be a bug if you take the action "Spell" and then choose one. The pheme settings open but you can't close them again. There is no button and without the right-click function it won't close until you say "remove the action". It's quite annoying :lol:

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Hawkey;

 

Text issues almost certainly, but probably not mouse clicks.

 

Regarding the Spell issue- I don't see this myself. Can you explain in greater detail what the issue is? In my current game, when I cast a Spell, I choose the Spell and the additional Phemes window comes up. However, this is purely optional- you do not need to add phemes if you do not wish to. Once you are satisfied (either adding extra phemes or no), you can simply click on 'Confirm the Action' or the blue orb to close the windows and add the Spell to your planner.

 

Does this solve your issue?

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Regarding the Spell issue- I don't see this myself. Can you explain in greater detail what the issue is? In my current game, when I cast a Spell, I choose the Spell and the additional Phemes window comes up. However, this is purely optional- you do not need to add phemes if you do not wish to. Once you are satisfied (either adding extra phemes or no), you can simply click on 'Confirm the Action' or the blue orb to close the windows and add the Spell to your planner.

 

Does this solve your issue?

 

Well, if you decide first you want to cast a spell and then decide to do something different - the pheme menu won't dissappear. It stays there until you chose another action and confirmed it :lol:

 

By the way: could you help me and explain a bit about the "setting" when I do something. I just wanted to write some correspondence, but I had to put a location there. Why that ? I understand that this would be necessary for adventures, but for every action ? Whats the sense and the benefits ? Moreover, why can I higher the stress at these actions (~ delete the zero and put a 4 into the gap) ?

 

Also why is it - that I could have the same adventure at different locations ? I thought there would be something like: if I chose for example "My room" as a location I get the option for the adventure "number 1" or "number 2". If I would choose another location like the "dining hall" - I would just get the option to "number 5" and "number 8" but not to the rest. Hopefully you understand what I like to say (~ so it doesn't make sense to choose different locations for the same Adventures / see picking "Meeting at the Tavern" which seems to repeat if I just do it from other locations). Hopefully it's just a bug that we could do that ;)

 

PS: Here is the review from Gamezebo Ashrayne mentioned before. Seems more positive then the others ;)

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Hawkey;

 

Ah, I see what you mean now. If you select Cast Spell, and then change category to another (like Choose Action), the Pheme window remains until you choose a new Action. This is actually by design, so that you do not lose any information on your choice while you are browsing.

 

Thank you for bringing up Locations! This is discussed, but we need to make it much more explicit. Every Action/Ability/Spell that you use can have a preparation Location set for it. This is sometimes a good idea because many Locations offer passive Abilities that, for instance, boost a Skill or Attribute by a certain amount, but only while you are there. So, if you are about to undertake a difficult Adventure that requires Forgery, and you happen to know of a Location that gives a boost to Forgery, you can set your Location for that Action in order to get that bonus. The drawback is that most Locations have a chance of discovery associated with them, and that you risk getting Detention by going to a place the Instructors don't really want you to go, or by being a general nuisance such that the cityfolk complain. :lol:

 

Although it is a little dissonant to be able to set a Location for 'Meeting at the Tavern', you can think of the Locations that you set as a place to prepare from, generally get organized, or as a source of inspiration before you head out to adventure.

 

We saw that review! It definitely heartens us to know that there are others out there who understand the game, and appreciate it. We were all smiles. ;)

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Hawkey;

 

Ah, I see what you mean now. If you select Cast Spell, and then change category to another (like Choose Action), the Pheme window remains until you choose a new Action. This is actually by design, so that you do not lose any information on your choice while you are browsing.

 

Thank you for bringing up Locations! This is discussed, but we need to make it much more explicit. Every Action/Ability/Spell that you use can have a preparation Location set for it. This is sometimes a good idea because many Locations offer passive Abilities that, for instance, boost a Skill or Attribute by a certain amount, but only while you are there. So, if you are about to undertake a difficult Adventure that requires Forgery, and you happen to know of a Location that gives a boost to Forgery, you can set your Location for that Action in order to get that bonus. The drawback is that most Locations have a chance of discovery associated with them, and that you risk getting Detention by going to a place the Instructors don't really want you to go, or by being a general nuisance such that the cityfolk complain. :lol:

 

Although it is a little dissonant to be able to set a Location for 'Meeting at the Tavern', you can think of the Locations that you set as a place to prepare from, generally get organized, or as a source of inspiration before you head out to adventure.

 

We saw that review! It definitely heartens us to know that there are others out there who understand the game, and appreciate it. We were all smiles. ;)

 

You still din't answered my question about the option to increse/decrease the stress. It would be better if its a fix-modifer, which got influenced through the location and the action - instead of letting the player handle it. Sometimes it's better to make it easy and don't burden/confuse them with to much options ;)

 

See "~ Suggestions & Improvement ~" for more.

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Hawkey;

 

Thank you! I *knew* someone asked me that, but I couldn't remember which thread I saw it in.

 

For any Action, you can add Stress to it, up to your Fitness. The number that you choose (if any) is added as a positive bonus to your Roll, thus making it more likely you can succeed through sheer willpower and effort.

 

Of course, it's very easy to get sick this way.

 

This will be included in the new version of the manual, releasing this week.

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1. New version of the manual ?! I got the game via Impulse, Saturday evening. I looked everywhere to find a current manual (in the game-program folder + on the official website), and did not find any form of manual. That was a huge problem -- especially on a supposedly relaxing Saturday evening -- because the game is so complex & it has no tutorial : consequently, there are basic features & procedures which are not obvious at first glance.

 

2a. For example. I started my first game, and eventually reached the very first screen displaying a week, composed of days -- with 3 action-phases per day. I quickly saw that I could modify the default types of actions (such as "rest") to select another type of action, but I did not understand if the whole week was going to be processed when I pressed the button, or only one day at a time. Consequently, I spent too much time & analytical effort planning the whole week -- which was more tedious work than fun -- and when I pressed the processing button, only the 1st day's actions got processed -- with a report scroll being then posted on that day's calendar spot. I was so tired that I went to bed, after having saved, before going on to see if the next press of the processing button would only process the 2nd day's actions.

 

2b. You might find the procedure obvious, but a new player who is not used to that genre of game, when confronted with his very first calendar page, will see a whole week to plan & might not readily know that only 1 day is processed at a time. Since there is no tutorial, a easily accessible manual is an urgent must-have !

 

3. Something very odd occurred on the very first action of the very first day. I had selected "Explore" as my 1st action of the game & had associated that action with a Location within the Academy (I don't remember where). After having pressed the processing button, the report associated with that action concerned meeting "pirates" unloading a ship !?! I start the school-year as a young girl who wishes to explore the Academy's building & I get to meet pirates at their ship ?!? It's obviously a bug in your coding of the branches of the decision-tree ... unless I made some Location-selection error. My school year did not start in a very intelligible manner : not only was I confronted with pirates, I did not quite understand what was going on in the related text -- which was quite normal for a new player who was clueless on how the game was so supposed to be played, especially since there was no tutorial & no manual to guide a neophyte. I really did not perceive & comprehend why I was meeting "pirates" at a ship when I was a very young, new student at a magical Academy, who only wanted to explore the school on her very first action !

 

4. Concerning the game's price (about $ 25). I see that it can put off younger gamers who don't have a lot of money, but I believe that it is a very reasonable price, considering all the time that was invested, for years, designing & programming such a complex game. Also, one has to consider that if the game is not directly purchased from your website, you don't get the whole $ 25.

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1. New version of the manual <...>

 

3. Something very odd occurred on the very first action of the very first day. I had selected "Explore" as my 1st action of the game & had associated that action with a Location within the Academy (I don't remember where). After having pressed the processing button, the report associated with that action concerned meeting "pirates" unloading a ship !?! I start the school-year as a young girl who wishes to explore the Academy's building & I get to meet pirates at their ship ?!? <...>

 

1. See

http://academagia.invisionzone.com/index.php?showtopic=514

 

3. It's not exactly related. "Pirates on a ship" is a random event, which might be triggered on any turn, no matter what you were doing. Effects of exploration are not as straightforward as that, exploration usually results in a new location being discovered, which is specified in "Results of the day" screen.

 

hope you enjoy the game. Feel free to ask around, if you get more questions :lol:.

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