Pulling Up the Roots


Week Five has come and passed, and what a week it was. There’s a lot to talk about this week so I’ll try to keep it on the shorter side. To give a quick update on the game as a whole, we’re making solid progress! The whole team has been working super hard to get their stuff in and content just keeps on coming. Our communication skills continue to prove as well as we begin to move forward from Greenlight and onto Alpha development. There’s still a lot to get done in the coming weeks, but that’s for another time.

First things first, this week (Week 5) in particular was a big week for the Narrative team. That’s not to say last week wasn’t, but this week in particular gave us the chance to take a deep dive into reworking some big Narrative Systems which was super exciting. In addition to that, we also dove headfirst into the development of Guilded’s tutorial, something that is pretty desperately needed after reviewing all of our QA feedback. All of this was pretty much just implemented the documentation that we drafted up in Week 4.

The first system we jumped into was the tutorial that the whole team had been talking about for a while, we knew we needed one, but it came down to the Narrative Designers to actually draft something up. We went about this by placing ourselves in the shoes of our player character. We ended up asking ourselves questions like “What would realistically happen in this situation?”, and we decided to have our Mayor character ask the player character and the player for help. A unique challenge of this was that we couldn’t realistically replace the start of the game as it already served as an interesting introduction, so instead we chose to build off that. We put ourselves in the shoes of the Mayor and really thought about how that character would react to their current situation. The new Guildmaster was due to show up that day, but the mercenary you hired to protect the town was asking for much more payment this month then they ever had before! We really wanted the Mayor’s tutorial to emulate these kinds of emotions as they are presenting information to the player.

With the tutorial out of the way for now, myself and our other Narrative Designer jumped onto possibly our biggest task so far. Before these two weeks, one of the biggest issues in Guilded was the way the Quest system was being done. Most of the grammar present in the Quests was mildly broken due to the way it was set up, and while it got information across for the most part, a lot of it was just difficult to read. In addition to this, there was some formatting issues with how the Quest system was displaying information that made it even more difficult to read. So, the challenge? Optimize this system. This meant going into the big bad XML file for the Quest system and making sure all of the possible procedurally generated sentences actually make grammatical sense and that they were both interesting and had clear goals for the player.

For what could’ve been a multiple day thing, we managed to tackle the first piece of this rework in just a few hours. While the rework isn’t fully completed yet, it’s in a much better state than it used to be in. Not only that, but we also have a bunch of great ideas for this system as we continue to move forward with it.

It’s been an absolute blast working on Guilded so far, and I don’t see that stopping any time soon.

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