Version 3: Names for the dark

Version 3 is now available, with new major changes, and some quality of life stuff.

Major additions:

-You may now select between "Names" for your darkness, which represent sets of themed powers. You select two of these to build your game's ability pool, adding them to a common set of powers and societal actions. This allows you to play differently in different games, mixing different types of power to focus or diversify as you see fit. To preserve player freedom, the last name allows you access to all the powers, so you can play without limits should you want.

-New Name: Promise of Teeth. This is designed to be a generally useful set of powers, allowing you to reliably transform power in to general advancement within society.  Gives you a range of options, allowing you to increase liking, remove evidence... Nice and effective, with no complicated restrictions.

-New Name: Winter's Scythe. The first climate change Name, this one allows you to freeze the world by consuming war. As human forces wage war upon one another (with or without your provocation) they generate leftover spirits from battles. You can harvest these and use them to cool the entire planet, potentially wiping out all human life as the map turns to ice.

Minor additions:

-Enthrallable nobles now very visible from map screen, as they pulse as long as you don't have an enthralled (togglable off with a button on bottom right). Makes it far easier to start a game.

-Nobles in society view and left hand pane now have different borders, to quickly find the sovreign and spot who doesn't have a landed title.

-Dark Empire nobles now more enthusiastic about moving into an offensive stance

-Various bugfixes

Linux version still being bugfixed for some graphical issues, hoping to get it released by tomorrow or the weekend.


Shadows V3: Names of the Dark 25 MB
Mar 12, 2020

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First off, things are looking pretty nice at the moment. It took me some while to get used to the way things are now, but I had a ton of fun once I did. The mix of politics and outside threat, whether from the cold or the flesh is a great one. Having a noble in a society, then using his voting powers and influence to sway others into doing foolish political choices when there's an obvious outside threat knocking is pretty great.

A few bugs I noticed while playing:

The first game I played, nothing cost any Power. I started a second game, and things cost Power as they were supposed to.

Reveal terrible truth doesn't seem to increase suspicion at all. (at least the Suspicion % don't move at all)

The economical balancing is opposite to what it should be, it seems to me. A vote passed that said "Move away from Silver to benefit Wine", yet the provinces that produce Wine reduced their prestige from 10 to 7.5, while the ones that produced Silver moved from 10 to 13.3. Shouldn't it be the other way around? 

Temperature and habitability seem delayed(is this as intended?). At first it seemed like they did nothing. I had them at below 0% and the town said "max population -4", yet it still remained alive and operative. Yet, a few turns later a bunch of places suddenly turned to ruins, despite the fact that I had done nothing in particular. If the delay is intended, it might be good to mention it somewhere in-game. 

A few thoughts:

I'm not entirely sure what Information Blackout does. I blacked out a few bottleneck provinces and tried to see whether it'd change the perceived threat % of a nearby society, but I didn't really notice any difference. Is it tied to distance, since the place was too close(even though I blacked out all provinces leading to the threat)? Or is it based on time too(the threat existed long before I did the blackouts)? Or did I misunderstand something? Should I target it at the city of the noble I want to influence, or rather the source of the threat? It's not entirely obvious to me.

Also, in the threat calculation you see from a chosen noble, is the "military threat comparison" % supposed to be the same for each instance? 

Anyway, good job. Can't wait to see how it'll evolve.


Thanks for the bug reports. Obviously we playtest, but don't have the time to do exhaustive analysis like a real game studio would, so it's great to receive feedback from the players.

We've recently changed how data is read (it's now read from a text file, so the players can alter values if they want to fiddle with stuff) so this may be causing issues. Unsure why it would have cost 0 power, we've never seen that, but we'll look into it.

Information blackout needs to be reworked, along with the information system being rebalanced. It's got a set of minimum values, which information spread can't drop below, but it hits those minimum values a bit early, so the ability doesn't do as much as it should.

The military strength threat multiplier is comparing your nation's military to the other nation's, so it'll remain the same for everyone in a given nation. It should be taking into account their current military and also their maximum military capacity.

We'll try to get a bugfix out as soon as possible, to correct these issues, before we start looking at Version 4.

I saw the 0 power thing again at some point, but I have no idea what it could be related to. At first I thought it was because my enthralled died, but I just tried to replicate it but it didn't happen, so I have no idea what causes it. Perhaps some power has a positive power cost by accident which pushes the power amount to infinite or something? 

Ah, so that's what the military threat multiplier means.

No need to rush on the bugfix, take all the time you need. At this point in the development cycle, these are minors bugs as far as I'm concerned. The idea is to test out interesting stuff, right? Better focus on that stuff, since fixing bugs is kinda pointless if you intend to change things at a rapid pace. A fix today will be pointless if the system is changed tomorrow. :)

0 power thing was caused, I believe, by using powers from the social view, as opposed to main view. That's been fixed, in the new bugfixed version now available. I'd prefer not to leave any major bugs in the game at any point, or they'll get forgotten, and the gameplay will be weird due to their presence. Plus, I've got a bunch of free time now, because the entire world is being told to stay home for the next couple of months.

Anyway, thanks for the heads-up, let me know if you spot anything else.