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Welcome to the first monthly DevBlog;

As said in the last post, DevBlog posts will now come at the first of each month. It almost looks like I was doing this weekly, doesn't it? No matter, let's just move on. As expected, there isn't much to report, so to fill in this post with some content, I'll divulge some of the items planned for the game here and maybe throw together a few placeholder pages to the wiki for them.

Endings

A few days ago I put up the Endings page. I mentioned them in the last post, so it seemed all right to divulge some information on them. The End Triggers will be placed throughout the game at various points, many of which will be designed to be on paths you'll have to take to get the Effects. Each trigger will be made differently, depending on its value between the three End Trigger types.

For example, let's say there is an enemy X on the screen and is in your way. Simply killing X might earn you a certain trigger; perhaps choosing to force him away or kill him will result in two different triggers; at most complex, maybe finding a way around him will result in a trigger, with the prior actions also taken into account. The value will be recorded into your save, and tallied as the game goes by.

Please take my word that I will not make the End Triggers needlessly complex and hidden. Or obvious, for that matter. I'm working hard to make them seam smoothly into the game and its plot. I may or may not also allow for all the endings to be seen after completing the game once.

Animations

In my first post, I said I would try to make the dreamscape feel very alive. A bit on that.

The first way to do this will be to add simple animations to the imagery. As will be evident in the demo, interacting with items in Netsuki's apartment will result in them playing their own small animations. The same goes for many interactable and non-interactable items on stages. If there is grass, it will sway in the wind; if there is wind, expect dust to be swayed about; if there are stars, they will twinkle and every so often have a shooting star.

Another item planned will be short movies that play the first time to enter a particular world. They will be short, no more than a few seconds, but will help erect the world and welcome you to it. The movies are different for each world, and paying close attention to some of them may reveal darker intents in them. Though, if you don't like them, you will be able to disable them in the menu.

The final piece to add to the depth of the world will be random occurrences. Using a simple random number variable, sometimes something strange will happen on stage. There will be a few of these in the demo, so watch out for them. Of course, some items will have much higher pop rates than others. Trust that none of them will be required to advance the game.

Plot Advancement

Just the same as Yume Nikki, the game came only be finished when you collect all of the Effects and return to the Nexus. What's different is that this becomes much clearer, as the Nexus will change as you collect more of the Effects. This will be displayed in the Demo as you collect a sample Effect. In all, you have three things to gather together the plot; the setting, your exploration, and your ending. The rest is up to your interpretation.

Effects

The Effects are still in the stages of deciding what stays and what goes, so there isn't currently a concrete number of them. There will be ones that parallel some of the original utility Effects, such as returning to the Nexus, increased movement speed, and a weapon. Some Effects will be very useful, while some will only be useful in a given situation, but none of them will be completely useless. I'm also thinking of making it able to hotkey some of them.

I have to admit, I've been having some fun with the Effects. Some of them are downright silly, or would be impossible if I were really using a 32-bit engine. For the wiki, until development is done, I think I will only release some teaser sprites for them to prove things are getting done.

General Development

It's only been a week, so nothing much new. It's coming along, so that's all you need to worry your pretty little head about. I'm no longer hemorrhaging time for my Persona 4 replay, so I should have the time. That is, until the Innocent Sin PSP release next month. But don't worry; after that, I'm free until Skyrim. Then...all bets are off.

ZakuuSoft can be reached at ZakuuSoft@gmail.com

- Zakuu Soft's Anonymous Design Guy

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