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Everything posted by tenchifew

  1. I did not run across this before, but i was actively looking for ways to study a topic not being on my courses. Hoped that Esteban Contu's School of Incantation would allow study of incantation, but no such luck. I sincerely hope this "feature" will stay, since i enjoy studying the courses and such hidden possibilities fits the game very well in my opinion. Couple of more hidden ways to do this for other topics would be much appreciated. The option to expand astrology study is (i think) Tertoliod's Observatory by the way.
  2. That i knew about, but since it takes so much time to train skills with your familiar it tends to be far more efficient to train your character in more skills. Than i would not have glamour effectively 15, but glamour 10 and 2 or even 3 other skills on 10. This is far more efficient, point for point and gives the broader skill base necessary for adventures. Familiars really need possibilities to train skills faster and/or more efficiently. sounds nice, can't wait... especially the bit about Geasa... What about multiple rolls? for example 1% chance comet, 1% chance shattered mirrors, 1% chance (some enspell ability for spells) will 3 1% rolls be made? Glad you liked it. Am already curious about the new picks. Thank you for your answers.
  3. Hallo Legate, thank you for your answers. Hope the "Favor" mechanic will make it in year two - would be really nice. Could you hint in which ways the familiars do "intrinsically make their owners more powerful- but perhaps not in a very visible or very reactive way."? Would really like to know , since i really want to pour 3 points into my familiar but right now the arguments of my min/maxing self have so much more merit than my fluff self that i cannot bring myself to justify it. Maybe any hints? Pretty please? On another note: how do rolls exactly work? As far as i am understanding the mechanics at the moment roll vs. 12 = skill+ rnd{1 to 2*attribute}. But there are couple of abilities in game which are spoken about in %. (For example born under comet +1 luck +1% success on any roll or bad luck magnet -5% success.) At the moment my hypothesis is this: skill 7 attr 3 against 12 12-7=5, random roll is 1-6, so 5 or 6 is successful, P[%]=33% further modified by godd/bad luck etc. Is this correct? Another thing i would like to see is more negative picks at the beginning. There should be a maximum takeable for example 5 to prevent the 20 negative picks characters, but only bad luck, family of traitors, black sheep and bitter hatred are somewhat limiting. examples: Enmity with a teacher - Teacher xy is a rival of your father. Now he sees his chance for payback coming -5 relationd teacher xy. or sickly - you are more prone to sickness than your fitness suggest. only takeable if fitness>=2 -2fitness -2 vitality permanently. ... .. .
  4. Ok. Familiars. Strongly setting dependent but very important facet of being a mage. Familiars are a very unique and often overlooked part of being a magician. The bond between magician and his familiar is difficult to describe and so is often omitted in games and fiction. The social balance between familiar and mage (also between magician and intelligent persistent summonings [pact magic]) can be extremely complicated and fun given a dungeon master who is interested in such matters and knows what he is doing. Familiars can be and often are very intelligent, powerful creatures, with abilities above and beyond not only others of their art, but many common people sa well. This aspect is well represented in the beginning of the game, familiars having 12 attribute points, and a possibility to boost their attributes to 15 after investing 2 more points in them. Some familiars have Insight and Intelligence 3, with one more possible point in intelligence they can be more bright than vast majority of the students on campus. A remarkable individuum indeed. But a familiar is more than that. Through the bond they are truly connected to the mage, while they have distinct personalities the mind of a mage and his familiar is uniquely connected, the connection getting ever deeper with increasing bond strength. Later the sharing of the mind often becomes so strong that it is possible for the mage and his familiar to telepathically communicate over large distances and share sensory input of each other without any spells. Familiar is also probably the most loyal companion the mage may ever have, since the well being of the mage and the well being of his familiar are so strong interconnected that a benefit for one of them becomes also the benefit for the other. But the opposite is also true. An unprepared mage whose familiar dies is in for a rough ride indeed. So in the beginning of the game the mage has a motivated, intelligent, competent and loyal companion on his side. A being interested to learn more in order to become better than he is now and help himself and his bondpartner, the mage. A perfect upbeat for a wonderful future relationship with an invaluable partner, right? Sadly, wrong. My loyal, motivated, intelligent, competent companion does exactly nothing the whole year long. Not one little bit. He is not with me at my lectures. He is not running around - since his athletics skill does not go up. He is not reading in the library despite his 4 intelligence and 3 insight. Instead he only does something when i am actively "training" him. If this would be a pen and paper RPG i would lead a serious conversation with my familiar, along the lines that if his atittude should not change at once there still is the possibility to sever the bond. It is not unbreakable yet. And this Pamela ghost girl is cute, lonely and is looking for a free mage. Then i would ask him if again catching mice to eat and forgetting how to talk are really his aspirations in life. And then i would sever the connection had it not work. These were the fluff reasons. Now to gameplay ones. The role of a familiar in gameplay should be to help his mage. But at the moment a familiar hinders the mage in his pursuits. Assumed any intelligent trainings regimen, a mage concentrating only on himself and fully ignoring his familiar wil be far more powerful at the end of the year than a mage who tried to do a balanced training with his familiar. Results will be far worse if a mage concentrated on his familiar - lets say for the quest. This mage will be lucky not to fail the finals, all for a very limited reward for him. This is not the presumably intended win/win mage/familiar relationship. A familiar should strengthen his mage. The choice of a mage to concentrate his energy on his familiar should be a viable choice like choosing glamour or revision. At the moment it is not. How to address the problem. I think ultimately the familiar needs his own training regimen. It is also possible to assume that by default the familiar is always with his mage, learning the same things the mage is learning - of course according to his own attributes, bond level etc. One possible punishment for the mage could be barring his familiar from attending lectures. Furthermore one higher tier bond ability should be a share spell ability - given that familiar and mage are literally of one mind each spell active on mage should also be active on the familiar. I think it would go a long way in making the familiars truly useful. I would be glad to hear what other Academagians think about this topic and my ideas. Please write your opinions!
  5. Couple of things i read in the forum, totally agree with and would be happy to see implemented: Exams as Adventures. Yes, please! More control about your conduct in class (studious/social/relaxed...) Possibility to redo failed random events as adventures. More feedback about your achievements. There are more, these were just from top of my head. One question: how good is skill at 10? What is it? To clarify: for example 1 history -absolute beginner knows only most basic facts 3 history - interested in history knows 6 -proficient - could work in the field 9 -master grade is behind you Dr. phil here i come 10+ world class It was what i assumed in the beginning and was elated about my first 11 in a skill. Then i wanted to run an adventure and my 11 skill with a 5 in corresponding stat appeared sa red choice. I was pretty discouraged. How can we understand the skill grades? because it seems that adventures want to see rolls against 16+ nearly routinely. Another question: is it possible to gain access to a clique ability of a student temporarily, using legal (persuasion, money) or not so legal (blackmail, bullying, mastery) methods? To clarify: i do not like my cliques to be bigger than 4-6 people. Now an exam is near. I would like to be tutored by Milena di Montors, but she is not in my clique. I would like to speak to her and offer her pims for couple of tutor sessions without adding her to my clique. Or to let Courtenay de Surval read my stars while we at it. And now on to familiars. Really.
  6. Thank you for a great game and exemplary dialogue with the players. I agree with you that choices must be important, i just wanted to have a smaller free fluff choices with +1 to 1 or two subskills besides the big defining ones, but i certainly am aware that it is a question of personal taste. I look forward to implementation, and will begin to tackle part 2 of my suggestions: familiars right now.
  7. Saw it on impulse, got attracted by the title, researched it further, knew I had to buy it.
  8. Hallo everyone. First things first: kudos to the development team for a really unique game! The game has soul, has potential, is very enticing and fun to play. Thank you. I did not (yet) read the whole thread, so please excuse me if i repeat something already stated. All my remarks are for last version on Impulse, 1.05 Everything said is strictly my opinion but i will try to be objecive. Now in more detail: positive things: 1) The game lives. The experience does feel like being in a real magic school. 2) Excellent writing. 3) A LOT of things to do. 4) Students and teachers have real personalities. 5) Vastly different playthroughs. 6) The game is intensely worked on 7) year 2 things that in my opinion need work: I) User interface. In this kind of games, especially with so much skills, stats, phemes, spells, items, friends, locations, active and passive abilities and so on it is crucial to have a clean interface in order to not lose overview. I am aware that changing interface is a very hard thing to do, but i will still talk about it especially considering year 2. Now my impressions screen by screen. 1) Character Creation First screen: Nearly perfect. Inviting. Really like it, my only remark is that version number of the game should be visible here. DLC choice: clean definite, very good. Button inscriptions are hard to read. (19 inch 1280x1024). Choose your name - good. Stats: there should be some tooltips/ descriptions about what they do. For example it is impossible to know that fitness determines your vitality and maximal stress. It is also not easy to notice that you do not have to allocate the whole 5 points. The next screen is the first problematic one: On the screen there are a lot of big decorative static elements, while information is shown in a relatively small part of the screen with small font. Not good. Now comes a lot of screens with only 5 points to distribute. That does not feel good. For once it is unclear how many screens are still out there - invest the points or hold them back? A page number (for ex. screen 5 of 11) would greatly help here. It would also be better to avoid scrolling by scaling up the useable part of the screen and maybe by adding more separate screens if necessary. Now a bit about balance: A lot of things to choose should cost 0 points in my opinion. Everybody was born at some time (astrology). Everybody has a family (family history and upbringing). Nearly every young magician has a familiar (says the fluff). It would feel more complete if it was possible to choose at least one point in each category. Only special things that really matter should cost/bring points. "Black sheep" - brings a point, "family: sports" or "secret Heritage" cost a point, but enough backgrounds should just add small bonuses for free just to enhance fluff and allow a well rounded character. (further examples: no familiar brings a point, exotic one costs a point, but dog/cat/rat are standard for 0 points, some small bonuses to skills for 0 points etc. just to make the player think in which direction he wants to develop his character). In this way it is possible to define a complete history of a character and to better identify with him. Next comes choice of colleges. There are even the descriptions of how courses are graded. Pure Genius. But i would like to see which stat is important for which course. Choice of character picture: art is very nice. I would like to have couple more pictures though. Next screen is the main screen of the game. Most of the time will be spent here. The screen does not scale well. Broad border areas are not used in my resolution. The clock is really well done but far too big, another part of the screen left unused. I really like the art design with starry heaven though. 2) Clock step by step. 2.1) Familiar Beautiful art. Well-arranged. But since all skills are in a non collapsable list it can become cluttered later in the game. Familiars are a big topic i want to speak about in more detail later. 2.2) Cliques works, but since characters have much more abilities it is cluttered from the beginning. 2.3) Relationships works, the possibility to sort alphabetically/ciollege/affection levels is very useful. Still cluttered. 2.4) Lore and locations Very cluttered 2.5) Menu good. clear and concise. 3) Calendar works but could be better. Highlighting the actual day would help, maybe reducing the default calendar in size, making just the current day selectable by default and an option to open the week calendar in an extra window. Action, location etc. selection: good in the beginning becomes cluttered later. 4) Control did not experiment with mastery enough to say something about it. (but i am already curious about it) 5) Inventory not so good. Just after reading the letter from Gera i already have 6 items in my inventory represented by little green undiscernable bags. Icons to discern between books/letters/shields etc would be very nice. Also having just one icon for the letter with an extra menu to choose which part to read would help. Also a couple more containers would help: not only wardrobe, but also bookcase, weapon and wand stand, potion box would help in sorting. Paperdoll- good, each game needs one. 6) Attributes good, but more information about sources and maxima would be helpful example: Fitness 5 Tooltip 2 base +1 Clique Ability +2 Spell remaining duration 4 days Stress 0/6 Vitality 6/6 Encumbrance 0/4 Concealment 0/4 7) Abilities/Emotions/Actions. Cluttered. to make passive ability appear gray out is a good solution to separate them from active ones, but it would be better to have passive abilities as separate item. 8) Skills/Research oh boy. extremely cluttered. Why build a kitchensink if you could build 2 for double the cost. I must admit... I love it. Even though some skills are somewhat redundant. BUT: it is essential to be able to find a skill/subskill fast and beeing able to separate them in groups you are interested in. Or not. At the moment it is very, very difficult. If a subskill in game is gained it is necessary to look through the whole list of parent skills to locate it. Not good. 9) 10) Magic/Items: cluttered later in game. OK so if you read the wall of text my main complaint about the menus is: quite a lot of them are cluttered. Now to possible means of solving the problem. We need tabs. Lots of tabs. And filters. And search masks. Let us take a look at skills, but the method i am describing could an in my opinion should be applied to any cluttered menu in the game. Basically in the beginning one tab is created. It shows all available skills uncollapsed and is undeletable but can be minimized. The user can define another tabs by opening a menu in skills choosing new tab, naming the tab (for example "magic") then choosing all skills he wants to see in this tab. (for example: revision, negation, gates, gmastery glamour...). Then the user chooses to create another tab: courses. All courses in there. But it is not necessary to choose al courses by hand, because the user can use a filter and just click "show chosen courses" and save the tab as "courses". And so on. If a new parent skill is gained the user gets an option: "at the moment you have following skill tabs: Magic skills, Skills to learn asap, skills to ignore this playthrough,... to which tabs should the skill "mastery" be added. If a specific (sub-)skill need to be found a search mask comes to help. I think this system would go a long way to prevent confusion and is flexible and powerful enough for any further add-ons. Please do not misunderstand me, the game is great and i like it a lot. I just want and hope to be able to help make it better. I also have some things to say about balance/content (especially familiars) but this will come in part two of my post. In the meantime: thanks again for a great game.
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