The last(?) big Autumn Devlog update

Hi everyone!

It’s been quite a while since I wrote a decent devlog post, and many things have been happening with Autumn. This will probably be the last big devlog post I’m writing for Autumn. In a few days I’m going on a 15-day volunteer program, and then I expect the remaining days  of August to be used to finish up the rest of the code, and then do some proper work on the art of the game. As I previously announced, Autumn will be released on the 24th of September.

Usually, at this stage in development, you shouldn’t really be changing too many features and plans, but I had to do it. Mainly because when I started Autumn I didn’t have a clear idea of it yet. But it if had to wait for the idea to be complete and finalized, probably I wouldn’t have started it yet! So I decided to jump in and ideas took shape as I went along.

Right now, time is running out, and besides time limitations I’m also dealing with my own limitations (skills, tools, resources). That means some ideas are being put in a “later,maybe” list… in case I miraculously end up having extra time before release 🙂

So what are the relevant changes and news?

No more I-Ching

In the last devlog I talked a lot about the I-Ching and how it would play a central role in each game. I decided to take it out once again for 2 reasons:

  1. its super complex! the whole I-ching can inspire a game of its own, but its complexity is just too overwhelming to add at this stage
  2. I did not want to add things just for the sake of adding content to “fill up” the game. I don’t want to cheapen the spiritual aspect of it, so everything is being carefully selected

Prana Orbs everywhere

Initially, the role of prana orbs was a very small one: they are released from trees, you attract them, and they give you more Prana to spend.

Right now, they play a major role in everything you will do in the game. Not only can you guide them to specific objects in order to achieve something, you can also emit prana orbs from by your own.

What things can they be used for?

  • “know” (acquire) new tree species
  • “know” (acquire) new items
  • increase land size
  • re-charge special items
  • help spiritual practitioners

The player type that you choose when starting the game will have a negative or positive modifier on the energy effect of each orb. For instance, a Yaksa player needs less energy to expand its land.

Puzzles

In each game, one or more puzzles will be available for you to play. Puzzles provide you some relaxing and entertaining time. Right now, there are 3 puzzles types (probably one more will be added):

  • Tree Guild
  • Scene Puzzle (sliding pieces puzzle)
  • Zen Stones (an hanoi towers puzzle on steroids)

Each puzzle will have a random difficulty: easy, medium or hard, which will reward you with a quote, inspiration or teaching, respectively, if you managed to complete it.

Conclusion

Other relevant changes done recently:

  • smooth soundtrack transitions between seasons (by the way, the soundtracks are coming up really nicely! thankfully to the 4 composers who volunteered)
  • better atmosphere with rain, wind and bird sounds (video)
  • minimap to navigate the game world and have a quick glance of the landscape

All in all, the game is progressing well, although time is really tight and there is still a lot to be done. I’m particularly frustrated with my sucky skills with the artwork, I think the game deserved something better, oh well…

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