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Bipbipbopbop

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Everything posted by Bipbipbopbop

  1. Haha, I know! I'm Australian myself. I was trying to think of the most stereotypical and unrealistic phrases possible in order to make a point (nobody I know actually says 'crikey', for instance). It's hard to think of stereotypical Australian slang even for me, because most people I know don't actually use stereotypical slang (it's mainly only old people who use it these days). I don't know if many people from overseas would have heard the more common slang before, because it doesn't tend to be in the overseas media much. If I ever found it in a fantasy story, I think my eyebrows would shoot off my forehead. What if I wrote this? "Some bogan deros were hooning around in a ute in the middle of the footy this arvo." Is that any better? Think it would work in Academagia? Oh well, I'm not a linguistics expert, anyway. I just read and write a lot and figure it out intuitively for the most part. If I was a character in Academagia, I'd probably only have a skill of 7 or 8 in grammar. Danae - Alright, why not? I noticed several typos in the game earlier, but since everyone else seemed to be doing a good job of reporting them, I didn't think I needed to. If you need more typo-hunters, however, I can join in.
  2. This matches the game perfectly! Short but sweet!
  3. Eek! I’m so sorry for being a party pooper, but I just have to say it – there were some words and phrases in this one that made me cringe: 1. ‘ain’t that cute’ ‘Ain’t?’ I don’t know if that really fits the tone of the rest of the game. 2. ‘This is such a great day, man!’ Noooo! Please don’t say ‘man’! It’s very, er… very American. Very, very American. 3. "Sumtin' got delivered to ya boy. A hadn't the heart ta make ya wait." The accent doesn’t need to be written in. Again, it seems very American to me. I’d much prefer a neutral narrative accent. Also, 'boy'? 4. ‘whatever can be in?’ Typo. Should be: ‘whatever could be in it?’ 5. ‘"My little boy,’ Not something you want to read if you have a female character! 6. ‘once step more’ Typo. Should be ‘one step more’ 7. ‘so proud, my boy’ Again with the boy! 8. ‘Your mummy.’ This sounds like she’s writing the letter to a 5 year old, not a teenager. 9. ‘your dadda’ Not as bad as ‘daddy’ (which also seems too childish), but inconsistent with ‘mummy’. Also, it smells of that forced narrative accent again. 10. ‘cutie pie’ I feel like I’m in the prose equivalent of an episode of Teletubbies. 11. ‘handfull ‘ Typo. Should be ‘handful’. 12. “"My dear, dear little baby boy” What’s with all the boys! Also, if it was my mother writing this, I’d be wondering who gave her concussion at this point. 13. ‘my sweetie’ Again, this is addressed to a 13 year old. 14. ‘daddy-daddou and I are so proud, my angel from heaven's heaven’ Er - this one speaks for itself. 15. ‘and that would do anything for you she hopes you know that and take care of yourself and don't catch a cold.’ Bad grammar here. 16. ‘Some Pims, can always help’ Typo. Should be ‘Some Pims can always help’ 17. ‘’cause’ Not such a big deal, but it sounds too colloquial compared to the rest of the game, in my opinion. 18. ‘like your brothers and sisters?’ I don’t like this at all. What if you want your character to be an only child? What if you want them to have only one brother? Only one sister? One brother and sister? Five brothers and no sister? What if they have the ‘favoured child’ background? This wouldn’t make any sense. It’s starting to dictate your character’s personal background, which I’m definitely against. 19. ‘good resuslts’ Typo. Should be ‘good results’. 20. ‘as it is now Lea's’ See #18. This is way too specific. It’s bad enough forcing my character to have at least four siblings, but I definitely don’t want my character to have a specific sibling called Lea, thank you very much! 21. ‘throwin’ Still not liking the fake narrative accent. 22. ‘We, of the altruistic foundation, have’ Typo. Should be ‘We of the altruistic foundation have’ 23. ‘Improving you studies’ Typo. Should be ‘Improving your studies’ 24. ‘noted of your above average’ Typo. Should be ‘noted your above average’ 25. ‘raison d'être’ I’m not sure French is appropriate for a world in which France doesn’t exist. Of course, we have to write in English, but I’m assuming English is known as something else in the world of Academagia. Is there a similar substitute for French? If not, I don’t think this should be in here. 26. ‘dimwit’ Personal cringe word. Very American. 27. ‘they believe it was totally on purpose you did that, your "prank" gets you huge respect!’ Grammar. Should be ‘they believe you did that totally on purpose, and your “prank” gets you huge respect!’ 28. ‘direct +2 to the relation’ Typo. Should be ‘direct +2 to your relationship’ 29. ‘lawl’ For the love of god, don’t use this word. Ever. 30. ‘Do whatever, I mean, yeah. Happy B-day!’ ‘Yeah?’ ‘B-day’? Again, sounds very American. It also sounds like one of those stoner characters from a sitcom. Not liking this. 31. ‘made lol’ Please, please, please don’t use this. 32. ‘Mighty ho’ Now I feel like I’m reading Lord of the Rings! (I’m not completely sure what ‘mighty ho’ is supposed to mean, though…) 33. ‘class and refinment’ Typo. Should be ‘class and refinement’ 34. ‘some real birthday, eh!’ And now we’re in Canada. 35. ‘BFF ‘ Please, no more slang abbreviations! 36. ‘go wild, eh!’ Still in Canada. 37. ‘erupts from the stuff’ Not that bad, but I think a better word than ‘stuff’ should have been used here. 38. ‘Some teachers poke their head but,’ I think we should keep calling them Professors for the sake of consistency. Also, grammar typo. At the moment it reads a bit too much like ‘poke their headbutt’. Should be ‘Some Professors poke their heads around the corner (*or whatever else they could be poking their heads around*), but’ 39. ‘orchestra puts the final note’ Typo. Should be ‘orchestra plays the final note’ 40. ‘first hand’ Typo. ‘first-hand’ 41. ‘new found’ Typo. ‘newfound’ 42. ‘You've got great friends, that's one’ Grammar typo. ‘You’ve got great friends! That’s one’ 43. ‘but, eh,’ Canada. 44. ‘you're mister popular!’ We’re now back to being boys-only again. 45. ‘with smokes and puffs’ Typo. ‘with smoke and puffs’ 46. ‘the most murderous looks you've been given to see.’ I’m not actually sure about the grammar here, but I think it would look cleaner if it was worded differently. I’d say, ‘the most murderous looks you’ve ever seen.’ 47. ‘the predator eh!’ ENOUGH WITH THE EH! Argh! 48. ‘it’s memory’ Typo. Should be ‘its memory’ Additionally, I thought there were several more instances of misplaced commas and grammar that needed fixing, but I gave up listing them all after a while. I can deal with a few extra commas here and there. The main things I see as issues are the phrases that deviate too far from the rest of the game in narrative tone. I’m not a fan of the written accents in some parts, for example, and definitely not a fan of the soppy motherly letters. I can’t imagine any mother actually writing something like that. Perhaps they could get away with it if the child was very young, but I doubt anyone older would ever let their parents speak (or write) to them like that, let alone be pleased about it! Moreover, it doesn’t match half the family backgrounds, or the tone of the game’s writing in general. Even though Academagia is highly unrealistic in setting (which it has to be, of course), so far I’ve found the writing to be very true to life in that its characters have strong, realistic personalities. It’s written more like a drama than a sitcom, if that makes sense. Similarly, the negative note from the Altruistic Foundation struck a real off note with me. A professional or charitable organisation (even a fantasy one!) would never write such a juvenile letter. If the application was that bad, they mightn't send a reply at all... but if they did, I imagine it would be cool and disinterested rather than reading like a child blowing raspberries. (Also, it makes no sense for them to disparage the entire student body based off of a single student's lousy application.) The negative parental letter was also a little overdramatic. The Americanisms (and Canadianisms!) bother me. I think that standard English is definitely the way to go, or we'll eventually end up with characters saying "Yeah, dudemeister, it was totally sweet, man,' or 'And I'm like, you know, like, what-EV-ar, girlfriend!' or 'Me 'n me mates thought it were a right corker, it were, guv,' or 'Don't get yer bloody knickers in a knot, crikey! Let's get somma those prawns on the barbie, mate!' or 'You're so kawaii, Pamela ne-chan!'. And bringing chatspeak into such a well-written game is nothing short of heresy, surely! Can you imagine a random event written like this? 'LOL u can has noms in dining hall wiv ur bestest kittehs!!!' *shudder* The worst parts are the bits that make assumptions about the player’s character. The whole point of the game, in my opinion, is to choose your character’s background and develop them into a unique character. By giving every character a set family with brothers and sisters (one of whom is called ‘Lea’), it takes away a lot of that feeling of creating your own story. No, I’m not a fan of that. Nor am I a fan of the birthday event happening to boys only. I feel like a party-pooping grammar nazi after writing this, but I'm speaking out before 'lawl' ends up in Academagia! That said, there were good things about this event! I like the overall idea of having something happen on the character's birthday, and I love the way it's related to parent approval and friendship. The concept is sound - it's just the writing that needs improvement.
  4. I don't like the idea of reducing the number of skills - this is what differentiates Academagia from all its competition and makes it unique! Do we really want this game to become more like other games? The main reason I like this one so much is that it's different. Really innovative. I really enjoyed the fact that I was still discovering new skills on my third game - it's all about the elements of discovery and surprise! Having said that, I definitely agree that many of the skills need to be reorganised, and I also agree that the parent skill for each subskill needs to be mentioned in each subskill description. I lost track of subskills on countless occasions and ended up assuming I hadn't discovered them yet! Other people have mentioned most of them already - Animal Husbandry, Music Theory, Acrobatics, Endurance, etc. And the category 'Malice' never did seem to match its subskills. I always thought Illustration ought to be under Art rather than Calligraphy, as well. What I'd also like is for someone to go through all the events and count the number of (total) times each skill is needed in game events. Some skills, like Running and Athletics, are waaaaaaaaay more common than others. Some, like Lip Reading, Dating and Riding, I never came across in events at all! I'd definitely like to see more of a balance in skills in Year 2.
  5. Nooooooooo, I will never forgive you if you turn Academagia into one of those games that forces you to only play for less than half an hour at a time! I hate that with a passion! Hate hate hate hatehatehatehatehate. With a few more hates for good measure, especially if it's a really fun game. It's like being told: 'Sorry, I know you're really enjoying this book, but you're not allowed to read it for another hour.' Or, 'You know this All-You-Can-Eat Buffet? It's actually an All-You-Can-Eat-For-Quarter-Of-An-Hour Buffet. Tough luck!' Neverrrrrrr. Grrrrr!
  6. I know about the Adventure part, since I managed to start one other duel earlier. However, in the Philippe Marchant case I wrote about above, no Adventure about a duel came up in the list - I tried all of them one after the other, just in case it had an unintuitive Adventure name. That's why I think it might be a bug. (I also used Declare Vendetta again, to make sure the message got through. )
  7. The Oleapeia's Orange Grove description says it increases a random Befriend subskill by 2, but it actually only increases it by 1.
  8. One thing that's been causing me difficulties is the list of Adventures, or, more specifically, their titles. Because every stage of an adventure has a different name, I'm finding it very difficult to keep track of which adventure is which. I usually have many in progress at once, making it an even harder task. There are a couple like Els' Adventure which have consistent titles, but the majority of them differ from scene to scene, forcing me to take a guess as to which one belongs to which student. Many of the titles just describe the current stage and don't refer to a connection with the previous stage, so it can also be very hard to figure out from context when you're attempting the stage for the first time. Then you get multiple Adventures dealing with the same type of topic, ie cooking, so that you can't tell which one belongs to which cooking-related Adventure, etc. I can't even write the list down for a reference as to which is which, because the titles keep changing every time a stage is completed! I'd much prefer it if Adventures just had one title for the whole thing, or at least put the name of the relevant student/topic in brackets at the start of each stage title. They definitely need a consistent identifier of some sort. Another issue is the right-hand menu. This has probably been mentioned already, but whenever I want to set skills and locations for my character's schedule and the right-hand menu comes up, I can't interact with anything else on the other menus. Nor can I even scroll up and down to view things. This has been frustrating for me, as I'd often like to check to refer to items, skills, abilities and so on while I've got the right menu open, and I can't. Because of this, I frequently find myself opening the menu and then having to close it again to check something (usually how many steps I need for the next skill level), only to open it again... it's time-consuming, especially with the click delay on top of that. Plus, of course, all the locations you enter reset once you close the menu, so you have to put them in all over again... Finally, also with the right menu, when I save the game it would be nice to automatically return to it rather than having to click the 'back' button. Again, as long as that menu is open, I can't do anything else. Just getting rid of that extra step would be great!
  9. One thing that's been bothering me in the games I've played so far is that my characters keep learning these massive amounts of hostile spells or abilities (but especially spells) and never have a reason to use them. The only real use I've seen for them so far is in duels, and it's so difficult to start a duel (at least for me) that the spells just don't seem worth it. (Though part of this may be a bug, since I used 'Declare Vendetta' on Philippe Marchant with a -10 relationship and nothing happened to start a duel, not even an adventure. I'm not sure what was going on there.) What benefits do characters get from casting unfriendly spells that decrease the skills of other students or hurt their relationships? There are so many of these spells in the game that you'd think they would be a really important part of the Academagia experience, but so far I've never had a reason to use any (and when I did anyway, it didn't appear to affect anything relating to my character at all). Since the other students don't appear to go on Adventures, explore or so on, many spells that decrease their skills don't seem to have an effect on what they do, either. I think it would be great if hostile spells could be used in Adventures as an alternative way to get out of problems. That student needs intimidating, but your character can't intimidate? Just blast them with a spell that decreases their courage! Is that thief in the market about to get away, but you don't have the skills to stop them? No problem - just trip them up with that spell you learnt that deals 2 points of damage to their vitality! Another thing that would make sense in light of hostilities in the real world is if the player's character gained some benefit simultaneously. For example, bullies often bully because it makes them feel better about themselves, or more powerful. What if a hostile spell not only afflicted the target, but also gave your character a boost to a skill like confidence or intimidation? Alternatively, perhaps casting a negative spell would imbue the caster with a positive emotion (unless they had a high ethics or character skill and felt guilty about it, probably). Of course, more duels would also make sense.
  10. I found the item "Tiny Golden Ball", which is supposed to grant its possessor increases to Spy and Hide. However, it does nothing for my character, whose relevant skills are still at 0. (The item's in the backpack, as I couldn't find a place to hold it, if it needs to be held.) In Sima's adventure about the bracelet, there's a certain stage where there's a blank space in the list of Adventures where the Adventure title should be, though I could still select it. I've seen this previously for another adventure as well, but can't remember which one.
  11. Perhaps I've just missed it, but I haven't seen any Adventures for professors, even though all the students have them! I'd really love to see the professors get their Adventures too!
  12. I did actually write it that way the first time around. The problem was, I could see equally as many things that could go wrong with it realistically as with the version I used. The accomplices mightn't appreciate Olivia stepping in and taking the credit, potentially getting them in trouble, for example, and might spill the beans. Also, I was trying to write to Olivia's skill set, and while she's adept at Glamour, she's not as good at lying or deceit. I thought she might fold under pressure like being put on the spot with a direct question. The third reason was that writing it that way just didn't turn out very well (in terms of writing quality). Considering that the quality of the writing in Academagia is so high, I had some lofty standards to match! Some of the lines in my first write-up came out sounding very corny and forced. I'm a bit of a perfectionist - I don't like to do shoddy work! - so I was much happier with the rewrite.
  13. I love to write, so I just had to give this a go! What fun! One of my favourite things about Academagia is the fact that each student has their own distinct personality. I'd really love to see more events that make use of the non-player students, true to personality and not just random name insertions. So here's one about Olivia Solari, as I've wondered what she'd do if a character got between her and Cyrus. NOTE: I haven't actually seen Olivia's Adventure yet, so it's possible this might conflict with it or cause some discontinuity, I'm not sure. Event Title - The Other Side of Olivia Prerequisites - Female character, relationship with Cyrus Dawes > 4, Olivia not in your character's Clique. Initiated By: Friendship with Cyrus at 5 (or above) for the first time. Main Text You walk out of class before lunch, distracted by the horrendous amount of homework set by @random professor 1@... and straight into @Olivia Solari@. Oops! She doesn't look happy. But you could have just imagined it, because the next moment she shrugs it off and flashes you a blinding smile. "@Your character's first name@! Just the person I was looking for!" she says. "I've thought for some time that we should get to know each other better. Why don't we sit together at lunch today?" You have other things to do and start to protest, but she's not taking no for an answer. She drags you to the Dining Hall and gestures for you to sit. With a smile, she follows your lead. The next thing you know, she spouting off gossip about some of the kitchen staff and you can't seem to get a word in edgeways. She seems eager to hold your attention, and you're not sure why she's become so friendly all of a sudden. Exit 1 Description - Danger Sense. Something's not right about this situation. Exit 1 Roll - Attribute: Insight. Skill: Danger Sense. Exit 1 Success Text - You're surprised that Olivia's talking about the kitchen staff when there's usually only ever one topic on her mind - @Cyrus Dawes@. Her obsession with your friend is well-known. In fact, you've seen her throwing dirty looks your way of late. For her to go straight from that to smiles and friendliness is suspicious to say the least. What's more, you can spot Cyrus chatting to friends over in the far corner, and Olivia isn't even so much as glancing his way. Something's definitely up, and you're willing to bet she's only playing nice because she wants something out of you. Whatever it is, you don't think you want to find out. You stand up to leave, and Olivia makes a grab for your hand, revealing a crack in her facade. However, you were expecting something like this and manage to evade her. "Wait!" she exclaims, but is ignored. Not to be deterred, she jumps up to follow you out... and accidentally steps into the path of a spell fired from across the room. Olivia shrieks and covers her face, fumbling for her wand, but her shaking hands can't manage to pull it from her pocket and hide herself simultaneously. You think you see something lumpy poking out from under her hairline, but you only catch a glimpse before your would-be 'friend' runs humiliated from the room. It looks as though you narrowly escaped something rather unpleasant, and Olivia received a taste of her own medicine. All in all, this is shaping up to be a good day. (Relationship with Olivia Solari decreased by 2) (Danger Sense +1) (Flawless Timing +1) Exit 1 Failure Text - Olivia has been throwing dirty looks your way of late, possibly because you've been spending more than your fair share of time with her beloved @Cyrus@. You'd been starting to wonder if she was going to hold it against you - after all, she's famous for being very single-minded. But now her friendly behaviour has you confused. She actually seems quite nice, and you feel bad about jumping to conclusions. You had her pinned down all wrong. Olivia finishes her story, smiling, and at that moment the sound of laughter fills your ears. You look around, wondering what the fuss is about, and see that everyone in the hall is pointing and gaping at you! Olivia sits back calmly as you leap up, patting down your clothes in an attempt to figure out what is happening. Mortified, you rush out of the hall to the sound of taunts and jeers. Upon reaching your dormitory and looking in the mirror, you discover that your face is covered in giant grey warts! Half the school saw it, and no doubt the other half will know about it soon enough. You hadn't even noticed the spell being cast! Clearly, Olivia is cleverer than you gave her credit for. Someone else must have cast the spell while she served as the distraction. You resolve not to let yourself be tricked so easily (not to mention publicly) again. (Stress +2) (Character Study -1) (Relationship with Olivia Solari decreased by 1) Exit 2 Description - Befriend. It's a little... odd, but if she wants to be your friend, you aren't complaining. Exit 2 Roll - Attribute: Charm. Skill: Befriend. Exit 2 Success - While you're surprised that Olivia Solari of all people would be so enthusiastic about spending lunch with you, you reason that it can't hurt to make new friends. Although you don't get to say a great deal, you listen attentively and discover that Olivia's stories are actually very interesting. Like the one about the time @Olivia's Familiar@ got stuck under a bucket in the kitchen cupboard and ended up being mistaken for a poltergeist. And the rumour that @random professor 2@ got caught sneaking student pastries into the Professors Lounge. You start smiling back and throwing in your own observations about the quality of the Academagia cooking, and before you know it are telling some great stories of your own. The two of you are giggling together when Olivia abruptly looks up, leans over and yanks your arm sideways, causing you to lose your balance and hit your elbow on the table. You think you feel something whiz past your head. "What was that for?" you demand, rubbing your bruised elbow. She looks at you somewhat guiltily. "Actually, this was supposed to be a setup for a prank. But it turns out you're not as bad as I thought you were. I, um, didn't think you'd appreciate being hit with that spell." Well, that was a close call! It was a good thing Olivia experienced a change of heart. You're not sure whether you're grateful to her for saving you or not (after all, she did set it up in the first place), but you tell her thanks anyway. You think. At least you feel better about your conversation skills. (Relationship with Olivia Solari increased by 1) (Conversation +1) (Listen +1) Exit 2 Failure - While you're surprised that Olivia Solari of all people would be so enthusiastic about spending lunch with you, you reason that it can't hurt to make new friends. You try to listen attentively to her conversation, but she keeps going on and on without a break. Who knew she could be such a chatterbox? You smile and try to look interested, but your attention soon starts to wander. You think about the homework @random professor 1@ set you and how you could already be getting started on it instead of being stuck here - gods, what is Olivia doing to you! How did you not notice how boring she was before? You want to escape, but can't break through her monologue in order to slide your excuse into the conversation. Finally, there's a gap in the conversation. Sighing with relief, you open your mouth to excuse yourself... and are squarely hit in the face with someone's spell. The next thing you know, you can hear shrieks of laughter erupt around the hall at your expense. Horrified, you put your hands to your face and feel huge lumpy protrusions underneath them! While the rest of the hall is killing themselves laughing, you see Olivia leaning back comfortably, much quieter now and looking very pleased with herself. Of course, this was all her doing. Somehow. Hiding your face in your robes, you slink out of the Dining Hall and resolve not to fall for her deceptions again. (Stress +1) (Listen -1) (Conversation -1) (Relationship with Olivia Solari decreased by 1) Investigation 1 Description - Awareness. Why is Olivia suddenly being so nice to you? Investigation 1 Roll - Attribute: Insight. Skill: Awareness. Investigation 1 Success - The nagging feeling that's been bothering you suddenly comes to light. Olivia usually spends lunch with her Clique, but not today. Maybe if you can find out what's happened to her friends, it might help you work out what's going on. You look around the hall and quickly spot @random student 1@ and @random student 2@ seated at a different table nearby. They're trying to act inconspicuous, but you notice them glancing over at you and Olivia every few seconds. You suspect it isn't coincidence that you're both in their direct line of sight. If only you could make out what they were saying. (opens up Exit 3) Investigation 1 Failure Text - That nagging feeling is still bothering you, but you simply can't figure out why. Your confusion must be showing on your face, because Olivia looks at you quizzically and asks what the matter is. Your excuse isn't the greatest, and she soon resumes her conversation. You suppose she really must just want to be friends. Still, you can't help but feel that something important has escaped you. Exit 3 Description - Lip Reading. Find out what Olivia's friends are up to. Exit 3 Roll - Attribute: Insight. Skill: Lip Reading. Exit 3 Success Text - You know there's no way you can sneak up and eavesdrop on the gossiping pair while they're watching you. Fortunately, with your skill in lip reading, you don't have to. You block out the sounds of the Hall from your mind and focus on the movements of @random student 1@'s face. "...be quick!" @He/She@ is saying. "I think @Your character's first name@ suspects something." This doesn't look good. @Random student 2@ doesn't look happy. "Olivia owes us for this. Why can't she pull her own pranks?" Wait, 'pranks'? You see @him/her@ reach for @his/her@ wand and decide you should probably get out of there fast. You stand up and Olivia makes a grab for your arm - a little too quickly. "Wait!" she says. "Don't you want to hear the rest of my story?" "Not if it involves me being pranked by those two," you reply loudly, gesturing at the other table. Heads start to swivel in your direction. Olivia feigns confusion, but it's clear to all that the game is up. The would-be pranksters exchange glances with each other and shrug, @Random student 2@ nonchalently sliding @his/her@ wand back into a pocket. Olivia glowers at them across the room. You don't know exactly what they were planning to do to you, but you're free to go back to your own business... and @random professor 1@'s homework. Bother. (Relationship with Olivia Solari decreases by 1) (Lip Reading +1) (Concentration +1) Exit 3 Failure Text - You know there's no way you can sneak up and eavesdrop on the gossiping pair while they're watching you, so you try your luck at lip reading instead. You manage to make out a few words: "quick", "Olivia", and your own name, but it doesn't really tell you anything except that they're talking about you. Which you'd already surmised. Oh well, it was worth a try. You wonder if perhaps they've had a falling out of some kind with Olivia and are plotting revenge. Unfortunately, it turns out that although there was plotting afoot, it was aimed at you rather than Olivia. Before you know it, you've been hit in the face with a spell that causes you to sprout giant warts, and have to retreat hastily to your room to research a counterspell. Your only consolation is that you know exactly who the culprits were. You're going to make sure they regret this. (Stress +1) (Relationship with @random student 1@ decreased by 1) (Relationship with @random student 2@ decreased by 1) (...and Olivia gets away with it scot-free!) NOTE: I tried to write this so that a little bit of different information is revealed with every different outcome. I also wanted to use Lip Reading in an event, simply because I haven't actually seen it used in one yet (or not that I recall, anyway).
  14. I found it again! It turns out it wasn't a spell, it was a location ability - the Chauranglaith Cave.
  15. The Wrist Flick action always completely crashes my game when I select it and click to activate the day. I don't know if this is a bug across the board or just on my computer, but it's a bad one! Additionally, there's a spell (I think... having a mental blank as to exactly what it is) that decreases Leadership by 3 and is meant to increase another skill by 7 steps, but every time I used it it only increased a skill by 1 step (though the Leadership decrease worked fine!). Not a very desirable spell!
  16. I've done three characters so far. Like others, on the first attempt I tried to play with someone resembling myself, but it failed once I realised she had a natural tendency to be very good at sports and athletics. That's definitely not me! But she also focused on all the actively magical subjects and was a whiz at negation, incantation and glamour. If magic was real, I'd be spending all my time practicing useful magic, too! I tried to make my second character into a stereotypical 'soldier' type. A very athletic boy with a good heart, etc. Somehow, he ended up being insanely strong very early on to the point of complete implausibility (after all, these students are supposed to be quite young, right?), and inexplicably very good at Negation, but not very good at anything else. I'm not really sure how that one happened. He actually ended up being quite similar to my first character, but with a far higher strength. My third student was a lot more interesting. I got her to focus on botany and zoology, but she was also a great debater and spent most of her time in the law courts. Somehow she picked up some of the 'forbidden' magical arts as well, though I have no idea how this happened.
  17. You've gotten me addicted to this game and I've played it through with two students already - and I only bought it the other day! Having said that, I can see quite a few areas that could use improvement. I'm still not entirely sure how to do several things in the game, so bear with me, but here are some things I've noticed so far. (I'm sure I will add more later as well!) 1. Character creation points. I got very confused with this the first time around. I'd allocated points to all my character's numeric attributes and moved on to the next stage... whereupon I was surprised to discover that some sections allowed you to add in more than one point, some didn't, some points were greyed out after one selection when others weren't, etc. Different categories were sometimes placed on the same page, such as astrology and birth location. I couldn't figure out why the screens greyed out some options in a category (ie astrology) and yet allowed others. I think it would have been better to lay it out with just one category per page, and allow a set number of points to be allocated per page. As it is now, my number of points for the entire character creation is displayed just once. I think it would make more sense to show the number of points to be allocated per page on the current page, and have it reset for every subsequent page when the user gets to it. It would have made the process far more user-friendly and less confusing, in my opinion. At the very least, the game definitely needs a more user-friendly explanation about allocating points on the character-creation pages. Similarly, I was very disappointed when I got to the halfway point and discovered I'd run out of points and couldn't fill anything else out. I didn't know how many pages of questions there were, and so couldn't plan ahead to ration out my remaining points. Sure, I could go back and reallocate them, but it was a time-consuming process that involved a lot of clicking. I think it would have made a lot more sense to allow for one point per page, to give the process some consistency. 2. Graphics. I love games with a lot of text, but even so, I thought Academagia needed some more graphics! I don't think it's necessary to cut down on the text, but I would definitely like to see some graphics mixed in with it. For example, when I wanted to have my characters in a certain location, I found myself frequently wishing for an illustrated map showing the locations. The first time I played through, I spent a good couple of hours feeling certain that there was a map hidden behind the interface, and that at some point I'd trigger something that would bring it to the foreground and let me select regions on it. Sadly, my belief did not turn out to be accurate - but the implication of a map is already there in your background graphics! The world of Academagia sounds so beautiful, but I didn't have a clue where things were in relation to each other. Seeing how the grounds were laid out and where the towns were would have made a huge difference. Even something as simple as a basic floor plan of the Academagia itself would have been nice. Some visual support would turn this from a good game into a fantastic one. I would also have specifically loved to see cutscenes. Again, at first I was expecting some, and was rather disappointed when they didn't eventuate. A great place to include cutscenes would be for the special events days. I'd love to see images of some of these festivals and celebrations in action! Alternatively, a cutscene for a particularly big accomplishment by the character would have been nice. You've got pirates! Ghosts! Spies! Thieves! I'd love to see what they look like! 3. Special events days. The first time I played Academagia, I found myself feeling pretty excited when I saw these coming up on the calendar. Festivals and feasts, wow! These were things to really look forward to! To my disappointment, however, nothing happened except a normal event. The only difference was that the special events were fixed rather than random. To me, that actually seemed less exciting after the first playthrough, because I knew exactly what was coming. I really think that something special and unusual should happen on the special events days. For example, the role-reversal day really captured my imagination. There was so much potential there for amusing incidents between students and professors! Instead, I found myself reading about the same History class and the same mixed-up bunch of papers. I found this in particular to be very disappointing. For such a great-sounding festival, it seems a shame that a disorganised book was the only thing that happened. Again, I think that cutscenes would go such a long way to making these days stand out. For example, you could display the image of a professor dressed in a school uniform for the role-reversal festival! This would be entertaining, funny, and give the festival that little bit of extra oomph! Another idea I like is that you could have new Adventures that can only be triggered on these days (unless you have them already... in which case I was evidently oblivious to it). You could have a special Role-Reversal Adventure, for example! Similarly, new secret locations could open up just for these days and only be accessible at certain times. I don't know, maybe this exists already and I just missed it (in which case I wish there had been a hint somewhere in the game). If it doesn't exist, you could put it in! I would! 4. Locations. I thought this was possibly the game's weakest area. It's one of the things I still don't really understand, even after two run-throughs. Maybe I'm missing it, but I haven't been able to find a list of locations in the game where I can look up their descriptions if I need to. You have lists for everything else, such as spells, phemes and abilities, but I think locations definitely need to be there as well. Most of the time, I couldn't remember what the effects of any of the locations were, and I didn't know how to look them up for a reference. I also didn't know how to use locations. For every action a character made, I could set the location, but I never really understood what it did. Nothing ever seemed to change, no matter what I selected for that box. And since I couldn't remember what the locations did, I didn't even know what to check for. There were never any messages describing the effects (if any) of the locations on my characters, so I didn't know if anything had happened. I also found it rather amusing that for many actions, you could put in completely incompatible locations so that the character was apparently in two places at once. They could be using an ability about the Smuggler's Bridge (or similar), for example, when technically my location box said it took place in 'Character's Room'. I found this extremely confusing. When I first started playing, I had my characters do things that seemed logical, like training for Archery at the Archery Range, studying Grammar in their room, etc. But if this had any effect, I couldn't see it. Before long I stopped bothering. Aside from a few later experiments to see if anything happened (it didn't appear to), I just had every action take place in the Character's Room, unless it was automatically set to something else (such as for Negation Extra Credit). In short, I don't understand the purpose and impact of locations at all, nor how to use them. I definitely suggest including a more accessible explanation for locations in the game at the very least. Maybe locations could be taken out altogether - I can't see what they do! The only ones I could figure out were the ones that were listed as Abilities in the Abilities section. As I mentioned above, I think a map or two would be immensely helpful in clearing up the confusion here. (It would also look very nice!) Alternatively, locations could be matched to the abilities or actions in use so that they make more sense. It makes sense for students to train Archery at the Archery Range, so why not make the training extra-effective if done in that location? More importantly - inform players of it somehow. If it's invisible, we'll never know it happened! Or, if a character trains for Archery in the Character's Room, they could receive a detention, accidentally destroy a possession, or receive some kind of penalty. After all, nobody in their right mind would shoot arrows in a confined dormitory, right? And how could someone train for swimming at the top of a tower? These sorts of additions would add a lot more strategy to the game and make training more interesting. At the moment, it's kind of just 'train' 'train' 'train' all the time, anywhere, and guaranteed to succeed even in the face of all logic. It gives locations a clearer sense of purpose as well. What I'd personally try and do is group locations by skill. Devise a list of possible training locations for each skill/ability (ie only locations including water for the Swimming skill), and make it so that a player can only choose between these for their selected action. At the very least, training Swimming in the Character's Room should be unsuccessful. 5. Romance. I noticed that several spells and abilities affected students of the opposite sex, but I never saw any evidence of romance in the game. (Did I just miss it? Maybe my character just didn't do the right thing.) It seems to me that by having spells that specifically target the opposite sex, romance is automatically implied. If there's no romance in the game, maybe it would be better to make all spells indiscriminate of gender, as it gives out a misleading impression at the moment. Having said that, I'd definitely like to see some romance in the game. With so many different students with different personalities, it would be great to see what the implications of different romances were! 6. Delay between screens. This one's relatively minor, but still important. Usually when I clicked on a button, there would be quite a long delay between screens. While annoying at first, I could get used to it. However, one thing that caused me strife was the fact that sometimes the delay would be so long that I wasn't actually sure if I'd clicked on the button properly or not... so I'd click again, and then I'd find myself accidentally entering in the next day full of 'Rest' when I didn't want to, thanks to clicking twice. To solve this (and also for a more efficient design usability overall), I'd suggest putting a much more obvious hover effect on the buttons (it's quite subtle at the moment), and an even stronger 'down'/click effect, so that the user can actually see the button reacting to a click. This way, they'll know when they've clicked a button and need to wait for the delay, and when they actually didn't click it properly and need to click again. 7. Items. This took me a while to figure out, and I still haven't got it all worked out. At first, I had no idea what to do with items. I didn't notice the 'Inventory' tab at the top for ages (or any tabs, for that matter - they seemed to blend in with the background pretty well!) First of all, I could never get 'Use Item' in the menu to work. Nothing my character held ever showed up in it. I would have really liked to have some hint as to why. I went through two whole games like this wondering what the 'Use Item' area was for as a result. Needless to say, it never saw any action. Maybe you could cut this bit out - or at least provide a hint of which items it requires to be usable! Secondly, I wasn't really sure what the difference between holding an item and putting it in the wardrobe was. I managed to figure out that the wardrobe reduced concealability and encumberance, but that was all. Are there any other differences? Is an item active while it's in the wardrobe? When it's in the backpack? Or only while being held? I have no idea. I think this really needs to be explained in-game. Thirdly, it took me half a game to figure out how to equip items. Even after I discovered the Inventory, I still didn't realise what the little squares in the centre were for. At that time, I had just one item, a plant, and my Inventory showed a single square called 'Plant' in the middle of the page with no further information. This was not very helpful. I ended up guessing that the square represented a mini-garden in the bedroom, and it wanted me to plant the plant in my personal garden! Only in my second game did I discover that areas for wands and necklaces opened up when I acquired more items, and that the squares were actually for equipping items. (And then, I wondered, how and why does one equip a plant, anyway?) The 'Durability' stat had me confused. I thought it might mean how many times an item could be used... but then it seemed that items with a Durability stat could usually be used indefinitely. Once again, I didn't know what it referred to and think it ought to have been explained somewhere. I also had problems selling items. In some shops that didn't have 'catalog' in their names, I couldn't even find a sell button and was very confused. The first time I did find one and tried to sell my plant, not only did my character not receive any money for it, but the shopkeeper stole the rest of my money as well! There was never any explanation as to why, and naturally I refused to sell any more items after that. While I think this would make a great trigger for an adventure ('Thieving Shopkeeper!), it was frustrating that there was no explanation. In any case, I learnt my lesson! Don't sell to dodgy shopkeepers! 8. The 'Control' tab. I still have no idea what this does. Whenever I check it, it's completely blank, and I can't find a hint in the text anywhere as to its purpose. In regards to navigational hierarchy, you'd imagine that the large tabs at the top give access to pretty important stuff, so I get the impression that 'Controlling' must be very important - so why can't I find any information on it? Why doesn't it do anything? My best guess is that you can control students by blackmailing them? Control your familiar? Hmm. This one has me completely stumped. Since I don't know what it does, I don't know how important it is. However, if it isn't that important, I'd consider moving it somewhere else on the page where it isn't so prominent. 9. Dueling. If this was possible, I never managed to figure out how. I thought that having my character duel with other characters would be very fun, and allow me to finally use some of those spells to immediate effect! However, the game's text offered no hint as to how I could initiate a duel with another character, simple as that. If it isn't possible in this game, it ought to be (otherwise what is the game doing with all those superfluous duel-only spells?)! If it is, then I would advise making it a lot more obvious how to actually start one. I'd really like to see a 'Duel' action in the Actions menu! 10. Some minor inaccuracies. One thing that surprised me was that I could access Pamela on the Familiar tab before I had the adventure that introduced my character to her - long, long before, to the point where I found the 'introductory' adventure very amusing. Logically, this tab should have been blank until that adventure - or at least until the Familiar section in the mentor adventure. Another thing I noticed was that some 'new' additions got repeated a lot. I would often find my character 'learning about X' a dozen or so times throughout the game. Logically, it would make sense for this not to come up after the first time. Some texts in the 'lore' section were identical, repeated under different names. You might want to go through and delete the surplus ones. 11. Lore. This is another thing I don't understand the purpose of. At the moment I'm assuming it's just for atmospheric effect, to enhance the story. However, I have to wonder if it has any actual impact on the character. 12. Context. Whenever I click on this tab, nothing happens. As a result, I have no idea what it is or what it does. I find it especially frustrating that there's no reaction at all to my click. Even if it's an unfinished area of the game, I'd still like to see a reaction to my click, even if it just comes up with a blank screen like the 'Control' section (though a screen with 'Feature in development' would be more helpful). With no reaction, I have no way of telling whether there's a problem with my mouse or I've missed the button, whether there's a bug in the game, or anything. 13 Demo. I bought this game straightaway because I've never played a life simulation game I didn't like. However, I think that not having a demo version available might hurt Academagia's sales, especially since the life sim genre seems to be so small and relatively obscure. A demo should be fairly easy to arrange with a game like this - just shorten the duration. Instead of having it run for a whole year, you could include most features and have the game run for a single month, or even a week. Something like this should whet people's appetites and make them want more! 14. Marketing. Needless to say, I have no idea what's been happening in terms of marketing for this game, but it seems clear to me that you've got an absolutely massive potential market out there in the form of Harry Potter fans! If you aren't already, you could try marketing this on websites for young adult or fantasy readers, or specific Harry Potter sites. I'm sure there would be tons of people interested in trying it out! TO SUM UP A lot of the issues I personally came across in Academagia could have been improved (if not solved) by the addition of in-game text explaining the mechanics of the game. While the 'mentor' adventure is helpful, it leaves out a lot of information that I think is very important. There were many aspects to Academagia I absolutely loved, such as the colour-coding of possible reactions to an event, but even the most positive aspects of the game often took me hours to notice or figure out. This is by far Academagia's greatest weakness, in my opinion. A tutorial system would help a lot, but I would personally solve this problem by including more text in various menu sections and tabs. For example, a short sentence or three in the Inventory section explaining how to use each Inventory area and the differences between areas would be of immense help. In fact, I would say that this information is basically essential. I went through my first game missing out on an awful lot simply because I lacked information on how to play the game. I'm fairly patient with a game and will put myself through a lot of trial and error to figure something out, but I doubt that many people would do so. In the end, the trial and error wasn't even all that successful, as there are still many features I don't understand. I've only pointed out the major things I think need improvement here, but there are loads of things I love about Academagia as well! I love the strategy, the Cliques, the replayability, the character portraits, the masses and masses of skills, the incredible depth and mythology of the game (which, I imagine, is the main contributor to some of the issues above being overlooked, thanks to all the extra work it requires). It's a very good game... but it could easily be made even better! Whew! This was long. There are other things I noticed as well, but I can't dredge them up from memory at the moment - I'll have to play the game some more to remember them. Hopefully I'll be able to figure out some of the issues above in the meantime and clear a few things up in my head. Aha! Just remembered another big one: 15. Ability/Skill/Lore/Item/What? Whenever the text said my character learnt about something and provided a link to it, it usually wasn't clear as to what kind of thing I was looking at. Some of the Lore was attributed to authors/artists and in quotes, so I knew it was Lore, but not all of it. Likewise, a lot of Abilities weren't obviously Abilities. Ditto for Spells and Items. The only ones I could consistently tell apart were Phemes, and only because they all had the word 'pheme' in the descriptive body of the text. I found myself constantly wanting to know what category a particular thing belonged to! The confusion here could easily be cleared up by announcing the category of the subject along with its description. It would have made my game experience go a lot faster if I knew which menu I was supposed to be trawling through to find a particular heading!
  18. Academagia was reviewed on JayIsGames, a blog I read regularly, so that's how I found out. Just from their review, I knew I'd love it!
  19. Hi! I just discovered Academagia the other day, and I have to say - what a great idea! I'm still getting used to how the game works properly (it's not the simplest game ever) but I think it has so much potential. Most games don't contain enough depth for my taste, so it's great to see something like this! If you need people to help out with future instalments, I'd love to help! I'm a student in multimedia design with a background in music, commerce and writing, though I'm a bit of a 'Jack Of All Trades' when it comes to creativity. I definitely wouldn't call myself a hardcore gamer, but I love strategy games and especially the life simulation subgenre. Games like this are really hard to find (well, they are for me), so I was so pleased to see this! Music and songwriting is my speciality and passion, so if you ever want some custom-made music, I'd be happy to help out! I'm also one of those annoying people who loves to give feedback on everything. That's why I'm here - this game provides me with plenty of material to talk about!
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