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Sierra Lee (sierralee)

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TLS 0.51.2 Public Release 2020-05-23T02:45:03+00:00

Public release is on the blog, everybody:

https://the-last-sovereign.blogspot.com/2020/05/tls-0512-public-release.html

This one is mostly just polishing, but there's a new (not variable changing) event with the Aramite ambassador in the Eustrin content.

Meanwhile, only a few days left for the NSFW games bundle:

Link: https://itch.io/b/500/lewd-nude-rude-covid-boredom-smasher-bundle

You can get some of my games (and a bunch of others) for 50% off. This bundle has exceeded expectations by a fair margin, but more thoughts on that in my next post.

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May 3 Update 2020-05-03T19:51:49+00:00

Clearing out my schedule last week was a good idea, as I was able to focus almost exclusively on TLS. Still a bit of art stuff and editing, but that's normal. We're a step closer to the release.

Unfortunately, not as close as I'd wanted to be. My creativity is not cooperating for a number of reasons that I could speculate about. For example, I've written all Neranda's sex scenes and that was easy - loved doing it. But then I wandered into doing some other dwarf scenes that might not actually be available next update. Maybe I'll do a "Eustrin Final" switch with some variations, like Yhilin.

I also had some rougher days and ended up working on stuff that isn't relevant to the upcoming release. Like Sabitha. I'm not implying anything important there, I just enjoy writing her dialogue.

Anyway, TLS 0.51.0 is still my primary focus. I hope to have an update with several chunks of new content along with a host of secondary events that might unlock content for more players. New ways to access Fheliel/Wendis content, for example. Hopefully in a week I'll have made good progress.

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Comments (30)
user avatar
User #6214130 - 3 May 20 20:48
Is it weird that i find it strangely encouraging that Sierra actually enjoys writing adult scenes? I mean, I guess I just half-expected that she would concider it an obligatory and unavoidable part of telling the rest of a great story, to keep people interested. But the Neranda thing seems very sincere, and makes me think that there aren't any central parts of the game that exist just as fanservice. It exists because she concidered it as a necessary part of the story from the start. Idk man, I'm rambling. Glad to hear things are moving forward, at a snails pace, or at a jaguars, or somewhere inbetween.
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sierralee - 3 May 20 21:42
Poor Neranda has been waiting for a long time and I enjoyed finally writing her some relief. ^-^
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User #3022900 - 3 May 20 21:44
One of the reasons I tolerate-to-mildly-enjoy the adult content in these games is it doesn't generally feel tacked on or out of place, though I do still wish there were all-ages versions of some of them just so I could recommend them to friends for the story without getting some odd looks
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User #6214130 - 3 May 20 22:25
"The incubus king came over the sea with his friendship orcs and kindness succubi, to hug all of Arclent. Possibly metaphorically, VERY much literally"
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User #664110 - 4 May 20 02:06
Haha, yeah. Some of SL's games work without explicit content, but The Last Sovereign would be really strange. As for Neranda, I wonder if she'll be as tightly wound after upcoming events.
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User #32913672 - 4 May 20 15:47
A Eustrin Final State would be interesting. Any chance we'll get some more elven kingdoms content? I mean, likely since the Mother is still a player at the table.
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User #8176682 - 4 May 20 20:51
Yes I want to see the mother put in her place. Beneath our feet
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sierralee - 6 May 20 14:56
No elven content planned for the next update.
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User #8176682 - 3 May 20 20:09
I.E talking to Palina with varied results based on Eustrin and Economy scores?
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sierralee - 3 May 20 21:41
I'll be getting into these things over the coming weeks. Talking to Palina will be the trigger for the final Eustrin content.
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User #8176682 - 3 May 20 21:51
Good to know
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User #664110 - 3 May 20 20:51
Think I've said this before, but I'm not concerned about you following creativity and doing future work. It just means time saved on those later updates.
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User #6214130 - 3 May 20 20:52
Stonks
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sierralee - 3 May 20 21:43
I appreciate that support!
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User #4787752 - 3 May 20 20:02
I read "Fheliel/Wendis content" as, "FhelielxWendis content" and now I'm sad it wasn't true :(
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sierralee - 3 May 20 21:40
Hmm, I'm not sure what that pairing would look like. But if you're looking for threesomes, some of the rulers will be involved with some that might surprise you!
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User #664110 - 4 May 20 02:08
We don't actually see the (undoubtedly unsexy) vetting process Fheliel puts Simon thru, but I suspect her royal mages would flatly veto any involvement with an abomination like Wendis. After they finished screaming.
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User #4787752 - 4 May 20 05:03
Is the vetting going on all the time? Like I have to imagine that hiding in the walls are like a dozen mages with clipboards and crystals carefully examining to make sure that on a magic level nothing is amiss while their queen cums her brains out screaming about being turned into a fucktoy.
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sierralee - 4 May 20 14:50
Haha, once Fheliel decides she fully trusts Simon, she enjoys having a part of her life that isn't so thoroughly committee-approved.
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User #12864231 - 4 May 20 22:46
I just want say thanks for all your hard work. I'm waiting until Ch. 5 is complete before I actually start it, but everything I've read (read: spoiled for myself) looks great! Also, no worries, take your time to make it as great as you want/can!
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sierralee - 6 May 20 14:56
I appreciate your patient support! Chapter 5 will take a while, but it should have a lot of content I hope you'll enjoy. ^-^
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User #8176682 - 4 May 20 00:20
Is it possible we could have a scene written in, a fuani threesome with simon and yarra? For this scene yarra uses a futa spell and pounds fuani's pussy and Simon can pound Fuani's ass or vice-versa.
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sierralee - 4 May 20 14:51
I already did a threesome with Fuani, but another one isn't impossible.
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User #4089879 - 4 May 20 03:42
I'm fine with you wandering a bit when the mood hits. "Strike while the iron is hot" and all that. If you do that a lot, then over the long haul any given update will gain as much as it loses from you working on stuff a bit out of order.... and we're all pretty much in it for the long haul. Edit: Uh, Decanter said the same thing a little bit before. So TL,DR: "+1".
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sierralee - 4 May 20 14:51
Your support is still appreciated! Striking while the iron is hot definitely works better for me, but I also try to keep a balance.
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User #8176682 - 6 May 20 00:18
I honestly would like to see an update involving tyna. Something about her first act as queen to acknowledge the doom king by making a formal alliance. At the least I would like to see Ardford castle open to us and have us able to freely talk to tyna.
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User #6214130 - 6 May 20 09:53
Dude, chill. You post comments literally all the time. Be patient. We all know that the Ardford/Tyna storyline will be completed somewhere down the line, so why try to rush it?
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User #8176682 - 6 May 20 14:50
I'm excited to see what's next alright?
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sierralee - 6 May 20 14:57
No major Ardford content is planned for next update.
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User #8176682 - 3 May 20 20:05
While I am looking forward to seeing these neranda sex scenes. I'm left to wonder based on your comment about your creativity block. Exactly how much work do you have left? Do you have a clear idea of exactly what you are going to add for the update, besides a Eustrin final switch.
April 26 Update 2020-04-26T21:30:29+00:00

This week I experimented with working on whatever I felt like. Rather than try to pull this into a focused post, I'll just list all the different things I did.


TLS 0.51.0 Design: I reviewed notes and did some prep. Now I have a pretty clear idea what main/side content the update will cover. This will be my next major priority.

TLS Report Backlog: Okay, I didn't want to do this one, but it was overdue. I went through a long list of low priority reports and made assorted tweaks to the game.

OEA Scene Writing: This one was pure fun, writing out sex scenes from the art that has accumulated over the past months. Barring potential variant scenes, every single OEA scene is now written. 32 total. This wasn't a major barrier to release, but I enjoyed it.

OEA Chibi Integration: There are still several chibi scenes not yet drawn, but I used placeholders so that all chibi art is now fully integrated into the game. Another element of OEA finished. I don't want to work more on this until I'm in a position to wrap up the whole game, though, as it will take a while to refamiliarize myself with minor details.

Set Art Balls Rolling: Since artists can take months to finish chunks of work, I never like to have them waiting on me. I took a while to give out info on a number of things, and of course TLS artwork with Annikath is always ongoing.

OEA UI: I didn't intend to work on this, but it rolled out of the previous one. I thought I'd spend a short time giving an artist information on the UI, but what they suggested was a re-skin that I didn't think would look distinctive. This led me to look into all the new plugins that have been created since I first set the game up... almost three years ago. Dang, hadn't realized it was three years. Anyway, I ended up doing most of this myself. The game now has main menus that look less standard RPG Maker.

Old Project: I dusted off a side project I tabled a couple years ago. Admittedly, this is not really helpful for clearing my plate, but it would be fun to actually see this work go somewhere eventually.

r/fantasy Panel: As mentioned, I participated in the fantasy panel. Link here if you missed it. This was numerically the most successful of the panels and I think I put in a decent appearance, so that's good. Didn't really move the needle except driving a decent number of TBS sales.

SC History: The Street Cultivation universe has an odd alternate history I've always intended to flesh out from my personal notes to something that's easily readable. I felt like doing this, so I did. It will be a bonus appendix... sometime.


Anyway... I'm more tired than I hoped, but I did succeed in moving forward some stuff I felt like I was neglecting. Hopefully next week I will be focused on a primary task.

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Comments (34)
user avatar
User #8176682 - 26 Apr 20 22:01
So you know what you are going to add for TLS 51.0? Looking forward to seeing what it is. Of course no one would begrudge you sharing a few details about it. Btw what exactly did you talk about at your panel? How did it go?
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sierralee - 27 Apr 20 13:11
More info will come later, and also in comments below. The panel ranged pretty widely.
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User #32913672 - 28 Apr 20 23:26
I'm curious whether there will be further consequences for the Tanurak strikes in 51.0, or more occasions to use the Incubus King equipment. Or an explanation as to how they prevented him from striking more locations.
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User #8176682 - 29 Apr 20 00:18
Or maybe get the 5th and final piece of the incubus king armor set.
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User #32913672 - 29 Apr 20 11:54
Which I imagine would be a sword of some kind?
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User #664110 - 29 Apr 20 14:12
Incubus King's Pork Sword (But not his most dangerous sword, if you know what I mean.)
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sierralee - 29 Apr 20 15:16
I don't intend the Tanurak strikes variable to be a major ongoing factor, aside from the secondary consequences seen in various areas. As for how the equipment is related, recall that the connection isn't visible to the player and wasn't intended to be. If you want an in-world explanation, they're a proxy for Simon's overall efficacy in ascended magic in ways not captured by level or other variables.
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User #8176682 - 29 Apr 20 19:51
But is something special going to happen after we get all 5 incubus king armor pieces? Will the last piece be a weapon instead?
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sierralee - 29 Apr 20 21:57
The last piece will be a key item that is a sword. Yes, there will be something big if you get all five.
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User #8176682 - 29 Apr 20 22:49
Now that is awesome to know, and one last thing, will we get to talk with the goddess of magic cult this update. Maybe talk to Mithyn again? Or Grynith the elven mother will we get to put her in her place?
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User #664110 - 1 May 20 12:34
As far as I'm concerned, the Mother's place is a shallow grave, and her shard's place is divided among the worthier women we love. But who knows - perhaps later she'll have an arc that makes us like and want her.
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User #8176682 - 1 May 20 13:42
I agree with what you said decanter apart from her having an arc where we like her
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User #5341776 - 1 May 20 23:13
Imma gonna stick my head in and inquire about some dangling plot threads. WAY back in the Ardan Succession Crisis we had the option to tell Mestan to plausibly fake an assassination attempt on Bhakan (and implicitly copy his guard to facilitate this). Mestan has since buggered off to Thenours and gotten majorly freaked by Lilith. Whatever happened to the assassination attempt? When we first reunited with Wendis, we had a Tower dungeon where we were supposed to either eventually get a True Stone OR (if you already had one), Wendis said she could use the Tower mine to "acquire some materials useful to you". Been a while since then too...
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sierralee - 2 May 20 11:59
The Wendis dungeon is slated to bear fruit very soon - it will actually be available a bit retroactively, but I left it aside as a loose end. I didn't have any plans for the Mestan part, however. It's just a ploy that occurs in the background to influence the succession.
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User #5341776 - 3 May 20 00:56
But that's just it, it's had no influence that we've seen so far...
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User #664110 - 3 May 20 04:32
It makes a difference in the Bhakan variable, doesn't it? Though it's true that we haven't got closure on that whole subplot, one assumes that will happen sometime this chapter.
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User #5341776 - 3 May 20 04:46
Unless it's been changed since the first Ardan Succession Crisis update, it doesn't affect the Bhakan or Donovan scores. Just sets one of two switches which have never been referenced again.
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sierralee - 3 May 20 13:18
Hmm, it's possible that this is a total oversight.
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User #5341776 - 3 May 20 18:18
Am I at least getting better at tiptoeing around suggesting that?
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User #5341776 - 5 May 20 21:49
I've given this some thought, and here's my unsolicited advice if the Bhakan/Mestan thread is a total oversight. The logical place for this shoe to have dropped is during the Synod, and we've already gotten penalized for copying Bhakan's guard there with Elleani. Presuming that the only other effects that were intended were for the Donovan and Bhakan suitor scores (which have not been checked since the Ardan Succession Crisis), it's probably safe to put the event code for the results of the decision into the next update, triggered by either entering Gawnfall originally OR a special temp event in the teleportation chamber, in either case being triggered by one of the two switches being on, in both cases clearing that switch. The dialogue explaining the result can be a report from Iris associated with the above event, OR Mestan can be chilling in the Silver Stump with a report and then disappears with a self switch, which then gets blocked by the start of the Erosian War in the NEXT update. Thus people playing 0.51 can chat with him, but people playing from 0.52 on only meet him during the Synod or shortly thereafter.
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sierralee - 8 May 20 02:32
I'm really mentally deep into the current update, but I'll get back to you on this in time.
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User #664110 - 27 Apr 20 10:51
What I learned from the Reddit panel is that SL is an inveterate planner. But seriously, there were some interesting discussions. Are plans not quite firm enough to reveal what main/side content the TLS update will cover, or what side project you dusted off? Adding any new features to OEA due to the availability of new scripts? Has any of your old wishlist for it been filled?
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User #8176682 - 27 Apr 20 12:42
Well for TLS Sierra was going to give the big Eustrin update but since that will be variable locked she is going to add other content as well. The questions are how will the Eustrin update play out and what other content she will add.
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sierralee - 27 Apr 20 13:16
So many people asked the planner vs pantser question... Though I'm mostly confident in my plans for the TLS update, I try not to promise until I've finished work. But it will be Eustrin plus some other stuff. The side project was the haunted house survival thing I last mentioned a year ago. I mainly dusted it off to check how much I'd done and its viability for future work, then set it back down. I don't intend to put any time into it in the near future, but you might hear more about it months down the road. I mostly focused on UI scripts for OEA, so I didn't review them comprehensively. I don't intend to add too much in the way of new features and didn't find any fixes for old issues.
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User #5341776 - 27 Apr 20 08:58
We have an explanation for Saphartlantis' "you can fill Yarra Sp bar with a mana potion" bug. In the first place, he apparently meant to type "you can fill Yarra's MP bar with a mana potion". He doesn't have Yarra equipped with an SP preserver so her SP always starts at 10 in every battle. What he has done is equipped Yarra with a Lodestone Hat, which increases her Max MP from 0 to 50. He appears to have cheated the equipment into existence at some point during the IK's Castle Dungeon, then noticed Yarra had 0 of 50 MP for the first time during the aftermath conversations at war HQ and used a mana potion on her. Although this behavior is mildly eccentric (to say the least), there's nothing stopping any player who can afford the items in question from equipping Yarra with a Lodestone Hat, Dwarven Robes, or the Goddess of Magic Pin, all of which add to MMP. It's theoretically possible for Nalili to be affected similarly, but there don't appear to be any weapons or armors that she can equip which add MMP. There's a couple ways of addressing the issue. 1.) Ignore it. 2.) Change the armor type of the above listed armors to Anti-Sex Magic or Anti-Sex Accessory if you don't mind Riala being barred from using them. 3.) Create new armor types that are basically "Magic No Yarra" and "Accessory No Yarra". 4.) If it's possible to create a state that isn't cleared by resting, do something like Vhala's Equip Lock but with the effect parameter MMP * 0 and stick it on Yarra and Nalili permanently. 5.) Some complex scripting jiggery pokery of equipment that adds MMP so it doesn't apply to Yarra and Nalili.
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User #664110 - 27 Apr 20 10:38
6) Give Yarra (and Nalili) an actor or class feature of MMP * 0%, which would be simple and easy and solve the problem without future effort.
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User #5341776 - 27 Apr 20 11:34
This is what I get for faffing about with the various RPG Maker DB settings on insufficient sleep... Thanks, Decanter.
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sierralee - 27 Apr 20 13:13
This is interesting! The idea that MMP-boosting equipment could add it to a character without that stat hadn't occurred to me. I don't think there's any way for the player to exploit this, but there's no reason not to use a simple fix.
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User #5341776 - 27 Apr 20 13:18
I don't think it can be exploited since there are no MP using skills for Yarra and Nalili. Just proves that there's nothing so bizarre that some player won't try it...
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User #5341776 - 27 Apr 20 14:18
For safety, the various MPless orcs should probably get their several actor/class configurations similarly spiked with a 0% MMP feature. The first rule of defensive programming is probably "never assume anything is impossible".
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User #8176682 - 27 Apr 20 18:37
Will we by chance get to see Zelica in game for 51.0?
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sierralee - 28 Apr 20 21:33
You'll find out when it releases.
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User #8176682 - 28 Apr 20 21:46
That's basically a yes
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User #664110 - 29 Apr 20 21:13
You'll find out if it's a yes when it releases.
April 19 Update 2020-04-19T20:11:01+00:00

It is almost, almost time for a clearer schedule. First, two items that may be of interest to you:

1) TLS is on itch.io

I hadn't realized there was any activity for free games on itch.io, but I've finally put TLS there now. Also, did you know that you can rate games there? I honestly didn't, and having no ratings hasn't had a negative effect on sales as far as I can tell. But this is potentially a new avenue to attract players to TLS, so if you have an account, would you be so kind as to leave me a rating? Alternatively, let me know if anything looks amiss or could be improved, as I just put up the page.

2) I'm doing a panel/AMA this week

I will be part of a potentially big panel (basically group AMA) on r/fantasy. Truthfully, I might be the least popular author on that panel (it includes Amazon Top 100 authors and some very popular web serials), so there may be a lot of new eyes on my work. I shall attempt to be appropriately scintillating. I may send a reminder message about this if anyone is interested, or unless people express disinterest now.



What Comes Next

I knew my schedule for the beginning of 2020 was going to be a bit hectic, but now I'm nearly to the point where I can breathe easier. All launches or unusual releases are done, my scheduled novels for a year are written, and I pray there will be little more promotion. I've intentionally avoided scheduling much in this upcoming period so that I would have some time for more free creativity.

What will be happening now? More normal TLS updates, definitely. Maybe the major Eustrin elements next, but since those will be variable locked, I may want to throw in some more content.

Another thing I definitely want to do is try to clear some old projects off my plate. Don't Save the Princess, unfortunately, is waiting on other people at the moment. But Once Ever After could theoretically get finishing work and a new patron beta whenever I decide to put sufficient time into it. Many types of art are done or nearly done.

I hope the less busy period will also help me think on what projects I want to do after TLS. It's been over a year since I polled everyone about a variety of things, but I still haven't decided. The end isn't imminent, but I want to have an idea fully matured before the conclusion.

Most likely I'll write something new before the end of the year. NGM, SC, and TBS together formed the first step of my writing plan. It has been both more successful and less successful than I'd hoped, depending on what metrics you use. I've been reflecting on potential ideas, but I likely won't put too much time into this in the near future because I want to invest more time into game work.

Or I might do something that isn't work, Did you know they've continued producing movies and shows over the past year? Shocking.

Anyway, other than the panel, this next week should be clear. I hope by the next weekly update, I'll have not only a clear idea of what I'm doing next, but meaningful progress on it. That's all for now!

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Comments (27)
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User #4089879 - 23 Apr 20 15:27
I know it's not a competition, but you're wiping the floor with these guys. Scintillate on, brave Sarah!
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sierralee - 23 Apr 20 16:56
I'm doing the best I can, anyway! Soon I must take a break.
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User #664110 - 24 Apr 20 03:13
I'm enjoying reading the thread.
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sierralee - 24 Apr 20 03:36
Glad to hear it! I think it's essentially over now, but I put in a decent appearance.
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User #5341776 - 23 Apr 20 00:41
In the interests of being helpful, and because I don't think Sapharlantis has the RPG Maker VX Ace and the decrypter, and thus couldn't answer, and definitely not because I'm procrastinating something else; I went through the list of counter questions you asked Sapharlantis in that big giant comment thread on the TLS blog and looked up the answers for him. Teleportation Event Map: 14: Third Arclent War/Aram Events/Aram Battleground Event ID 001 Preceding Line: Hilstara: "Whew... is it finally over?" Animation should be changed to "Wind One", centered on either Event 003 (Altina/Mage) or Event 002 (Altina/Mage) depending on whether the switches 0248 and/or 0439 are on. (There needs to be a nested conditional around the show animation.) Megail "to to" Map: 14: Third Arclent War/Aram Events/HQ Campfire 2 Event ID 001 Line: Megail: "Just because we're trying to to save lives here doesn't mean we should let them walk over us." Delete duplicate "to". Yarra speech duplication: Map: The Tower/Twisted Space Calm Event ID 003 Page 3 (Minor issue phase of Synod) Yarra lines: No, I get it. I really do./I grew up thinking the older succubi knew better than me. I trusted them and assumed that at the top there must be someone even smarter./But instead, there was only the Incubus Emperor. The world I knew was ruled by a madman. Not sure what Sapharlantis is on about but I vaguely recall the second line might have been repeated in an earlier release. Sapharlantis IS playing the current release, right? --- I think that leaves the questions about mana potions restoring Yarra's SP and the probably impossible possibility of getting penalized for opening the ruins before Ancient Ruins before the Erosian Crisis/Erosian War. (Sapharlantis is a bit unclear on this.)
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sierralee - 23 Apr 20 03:32
Thanks for taking the time! I've gotten these corrected, except for the Yarra repetition. It's entirely possible that something is repeated, but at the moment I can't be sure.
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User #5341776 - 23 Apr 20 04:39
I left a duplicate of the above on the wiki forums for Sapharlantis, plus a note indicating that he should give us (on the wiki) a save game state with the mana potion bug so we could have shot at figuring it out before putting it on your plate, on the principle that you want to be doing more high value work. I actually can't find any code in the Ancient Ruin penalizing players for cheating to open it early, hence (among many other things) my wondering if he's using an older version. If there is such code, we can have Fulminato see if there's a path to max/mining it open early without cheating that would invoke the penalty.
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User #8176682 - 19 Apr 20 21:02
What do you mean from the part you mention the new Eustrin update but you say that since those will be variable locked that you will add more content for TLS? Could you please clarify?
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User #2540339 - 19 Apr 20 21:51
It means that the new Eustrin content may not be accessible yet depending on your Eustrin score (or possibly other factors). For some players, that would mean an update with no new accessible content, hence the desire to add some other new stuff.
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User #9585089 - 23 Apr 20 05:54
You are on the same panel as nobody103. Nice!
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sierralee - 23 Apr 20 14:06
Yeah, I hope this will be an opportunity for me. The panel has started now!
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User #3428364 - 20 Apr 20 04:38
Well couldn't rate game on phone but I left -what I hope is- a decent review I hope it helps
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sierralee - 20 Apr 20 14:18
It's appreciated!
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User #3428364 - 20 Apr 20 14:20
Oh no problem you've brought us a story that in my honest opinion is on the same level as one of final fantasy's best
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User #4089879 - 19 Apr 20 20:37
I look forward to the public unveiling of Scintillating Sierra.
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User #4787752 - 19 Apr 20 23:05
Question for the artist known as Scintillating Sierra, "Is mayonnaise an instrument?"
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User #3076718 - 20 Apr 20 01:18
But will the Scintillating Sierra have a shining sword?
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User #8176682 - 20 Apr 20 01:46
Only if she's Shining Scintillating Sierra.
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sierralee - 20 Apr 20 02:54
Shining swords shall shimmer superlatively!
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User #8779735 - 24 Apr 20 02:26
Hey Sierra, since you haven't decided much about your next major project yet, if it is okay, I'd like to make a couple of suggestions, at least for possible genres for your next game: First, a Tactics-RPG or a Strategy-RPG. The big battle events in TLS are super engaging and easily one of my favourite parts of the game, so what if you made a game mechanically centered around those type of events? Be it the more moment-focused approach of the Tactical-RPGs (being a commander in a campaign, having to plan and execute battle-by-battle, trying to do the best they can for their soldiers) or the more broad approach of Strategy-RPGs (A leader overlooking a map in the face of a inevitable war, How will you organize your forces? What you must hold and what you're willing to concede? What alliances are you willing to make? Who can you trust?). I think you'd be able to write really good stories and create great puzzles and scenarios for those types of games! Admitedly, I don't know how difficult it would be to make those games from a technical standpoint. I heard there are some plug-ins that allow you to make those type of games in RPGMaker itself, as well as some other similar engines specifically for those genres, but I do not know for a fact if those would be easy to pick up. And for my second suggestion, I'd love to see what you could make in the Trainer/Management genre, something in the vein of Long Live The Queen or the Princess Maker series. Another one of my favourite things in TLS is that I think you write super nice and warm teacher-student relationships. I'd love to play a game centered around such a relationship (even if it wasn't all roses) and with your min-maxing route-planning puzzles. I feel like anything you did would be quite a breath of fresh air on that genre since, at least for adult games, most of those games end up being grindy, inevitably turning abusive, and becoming irrationally depraved as their endgame, which ironically enough ends up being a turn-off for me. Of course I am only making those suggestions in case you want to try something new and different. I love TLS for what it is and if you think you have another incredible classic RPG in you for your next project, I will eat it up all the same. But if you want to branch out, those two genres are where I'd love to see your work.
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sierralee - 24 Apr 20 03:36
I appreciate you sharing your thoughts! I've actually wanted to do a strategy RPG at some point, but the difficulty is indeed the engine. There's an SRPG Studio, but from what I've seen, it's limited to Fire Emblem clones. I havne't fully explored the plugins, but in the past they've often been a bit limited compared to a satisfying RPG. Though I've considered if I have an interesting take on the trainer genre in me, the specific subgenre you mention is actually one of the gaps in my experience. I just haven't tried them up to this point.
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User #9829041 - 24 Apr 20 08:56
I would hazard the guess that part of Princess Maker (more exactly Princess Maker 2, the one people usually think about when they say "Princess Maker") enduring popularity with indie game makers is that the original game is filled with good ideas, but never use them to their full potential. As it stands, it's more of a farm optimization game than anything else, but it *hints* at many interesting things: - An equivalence between battle skills and other skills (you can train both swordsmanship and etiquette the same way, and *at first glance* the game lets you dream that you could resolve situation as easily with the fan than with the sword) - A hella lot of secrets and imaginative alternatives just waiting to be unlocked with unconventional thinking - A character evolving both physically and mentally through the course of the game (in practice, she's just taller and the morality system is utterly simplistic) - A final destiny which can range from beggar to queen depending of a lot of small factors (pure illusion, the game just looks at your highest stat at the very end with little consideration for your in-game actions; also, there is a bug making the art skill always first priority; thus you can easily end up as a god-killing street dancer) Yeah, it's the Fable of the early 90s in term of promised versus delivered. Its most successful spiritual successor is Long Live the Queen, which discards farming entirely, balances most of the skills and requires cautious decision making and accepting you cannot be good at everything, and ends with a complex epilogue with multiple moving parts. It also gets rid of the faceless nameless "father" character (the player avatar) of Princess Maker: The main character is old enough to raise herself. I love this game but it's not without flaws. The art style is debatable (imagine if Game of Thrones was an anime made by the Pretty Cure studio), there is an emotional state system which only impacts skill training (?), there are far too many characters to properly develop them and they seem to only actively help when you explicitly ask them to, and Elodie just has a tendency to grab the idiot ball extremely hard sometimes (the goddamn chocolate scene). (first runs are also basically forced disaster runs time for the player to understand mechanisms and setting, a fact which seems to be quite unpopular on the Internet; but that's not much of a problem in my opinion as the game is designed to be replayed again and again) But all in one, it's a fascinating take on the raising sim/political simulator genre. Also, summoning Cthulhu to eat your enemy ships never gets old.
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sierralee - 24 Apr 20 14:12
Thanks for going into depth. I can definitely see the possibilities, but I'm also hesitant to try something where I don't have organic familiarity with the genre. I'd have to play those two and see how they feel to me.
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User #16888332 - 21 Apr 20 18:42
Sierra I searched for the last sovereign on my icho.io desktop app but your game so far does not show up. Looks like new games can take a while to appear but keep your eye on it. Make sure your tags and appearance options are set correctly.
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User #9829041 - 21 Apr 20 21:54
Might simply be because NSFW games are excluded from the search as a default: https://itch.io/t/126473/two-questions-about-nsfw
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sierralee - 21 Apr 20 23:01
Could it be the NSFW thing? Please check if the direct link works for you. That said, it's entirely possible that something is set wrong, but if so, I don't know what it is.
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User #8176682 - 19 Apr 20 22:20
Oh I get it, I'm certain I don't have to worry about that but I wonder what else she would add.
TLS 0.50.1 - The Art Release is now public! 2020-04-17T22:31:29+00:00

Hey, everyone! I'm glad to announce that the first big art release is now public, and you can download it here:

https://the-last-sovereign.blogspot.com/2020/04/tls-0501-art-release-is-now-public.html

No images in this public post to comply with guidelines, but you should be able to see art previews and other fun things on the Steam page:

https://store.steampowered.com/app/951830/The_Last_Sovereign/

Having said that, I don't have a lot more to add. This has been a long time coming and I hope everyone enjoys it. ^-^ I also hope that everything goes smoothly and I can have my first actual weekend in a long time...


But first comes promotion. I'll be posting new threads on Reddit and other places:

https://www.reddit.com/r/lewdgames/comments/g3c7vn/the_last_sovereign_now_has_25_illustrated_scenes/?

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Comments (23)
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User #7631155 - 18 Apr 20 12:15
Good luck with the promotion!
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sierralee - 18 Apr 20 16:39
Thanks!
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User #3851879 - 17 Apr 20 23:23
I made a review! https://gtgdoes.com/2020/04/16/greentext-does-the-last-sovereign/ I also made this horrible monstrosity. https://i.imgur.com/nqcHqiO.png
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sierralee - 18 Apr 20 00:43
I appreciate your support! And the meme will go straight into the image pack's meme folder.
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User #664110 - 18 Apr 20 08:50
GtG, gotta point this out: TLS isn't on version 0.5 - that was like, 2015? TLS is on 0.50 - the difference is 45 major updates. TLS is using a form of semantic versioning ( https://semver.org/ ) and to someone reading it that way, you make the game sound like it updates like once a year. Also, TLS uses mostly stock assets (Annikath's art aside) but mostly not default ones.
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User #3851879 - 18 Apr 20 18:28
Thanks for the heads up! I was aware of the asset thing but kind of bumbled my terminology. I've edited the post and hope it reads better now
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User #3076718 - 18 Apr 20 19:37
I enjoyed reading your TLS and other overviews. Great read, and good job.
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User #5075998 - 19 Apr 20 23:47
I'm doing a replay of the game after a long while and I noticed that Galvia doesn't describe the ores in Eustrin B6 anymore. Surely this isn't intentional? EDIT: I was wrong, it was just an oddly clear false memory >.<
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User #664110 - 21 Apr 20 13:01
As far as I can tell, she still does. But she has to be tagging along with your group first, which only happens after you meet her in the booze shop and have the Hilstara x Galvia scene, and only during the Chapter 3 visit.
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User #5075998 - 21 Apr 20 16:03
No, that's not the problem here. I've looked at the event code and while the conditional pages for ore inspection are there, they're completely empty for some reason https://files.catbox.moe/yk9p0u.png
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User #664110 - 22 Apr 20 03:52
"Ores Galvia" is the switch that is set by the player having the conversation with Galvia about ores, not to prime that conversation, which should be apparent from reading event pages 1 and 2. That page 3 exists so that you don't keep having the ores conversation after you've already had it once.
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User #5075998 - 22 Apr 20 04:45
Uhh... are you sure about that? If you can, please look over the events yourself. On page 2, Galvia says that she's about to give the tour of these ores. The switch is so that the tour primes when interacting with any of the ores once. The blank page 3 is supposed to be the tour itself. I clearly remember her giving detailed descriptions for each of the ores in an earlier version.
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User #664110 - 22 Apr 20 11:37
I don't remember that, and I believe that 60-frame fadeout in pages 1 and 2 is meant to represent Galvia giving a tour "offscreen". But I suppose it's possible I just totally forgot about a conversation each ore had, and that a page got deleted from each event. To check that, we'd need an old build of the game to examine. The most likely time for this content to have been added is from version 0.26 to 0.27. Unfortunately, I delete most old builds after several updates have passed. The oldest build I currently retain is 0.46.2, which doesn't show any difference in this part.
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User #5075998 - 22 Apr 20 12:50
Just checked the oldest active download link I could find (0.40.5), but it didn't have any differences. Kinda hoping that Sierra might chime in, that'd probably be the fastest solution. Honestly, I'm starting to think it could be some sort of oddly clear false memory. Sorry to waste everyone's time if that turns out to be the case >.<
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sierralee - 22 Apr 20 13:09
The individual ores never had detailed conversations, though I suppose I should be happy that people assumed I would have that much worldbuilding. ^-^
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User #208584 - 3 May 20 01:49
Sorry for asking so many questions, but have you stated if you'll be commissioning a CG for the lock-in conversations? Maybe after you've done most of the sex scenes. But I think there will definitely be a more heartwarming feel to the game by seeing those scenes. Like, since I'm doing a new playthrough, I got to Qum's scene and seeing her babble incoherent nothings to Simon while he holds her and smiles would totally be sweet.....yup.....and then you can glitz the whole game up. Like add CGs for important/sad scenes. Like when Hilstara thinks you'll have to kill her or something to stop her from hurting you because she got got'ted.
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sierralee - 3 May 20 13:20
The number of scenes will already be really high, but that doesn't mean we won't add more when we feel it's appropriate. There are a few SFW scenes already planned. While having an illustration for every locking scene might be overboard, that wouldn't exclude scenes that would particularly benefit from having one. ^-^
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User #20269858 - 18 May 20 04:45
So the sex scenes are like one CG? Not even a cumming CG?
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sierralee - 18 May 20 12:39
It varies per scene. Some do have coming CGs, some have multiple, a few have separate base images. It depends on how varied the scene is.
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User #18820728 - 21 May 20 22:30
Is there any chance you will expand on the shorter one in the future?
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sierralee - 22 May 20 12:05
Possibly, if it's commonly requested by patrons. It hasn't been brought up much before now.
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User #2669910 - 18 Apr 20 00:57
Great to see the art update go public! A minor bug report, I ran through all scenes with CG (those available to my save at least) using reflect skill and found out the Steinfield Orgy scene and Yarra + Trin scene's CG would not disappear after the scene finishes, forcing me to run another 'normal' scene to resume control. I suppose there is one line about clearing CG missing in those two scenes, or maybe it's because those scenes involve multiple CGs which didn't all get properly cleared.
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sierralee - 18 Apr 20 01:59
Dangit. This is my fault, but I really didn't want to lose half my evening to this... -_- But thanks for the report!
April 12 Update: One More Book Launch Edition
April 12 Update: One More Book Launch Editionmore_vert
2020-04-12T22:24:54+00:00
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April 12 Update: One More Book Launch Edition 2020-04-12T22:24:54+00:00close

Lots of stuff happening. $5 patrons are playing the newest version of the game complete with the full art. $10 patrons just got the first ever art package (all scenes at full resolution plus maps/fanart/etc). This is also your notification that I just updated that post with a new version, now with 273 total images.

Potentially relevant to everyone is the above image, as Street Cultivation 2 has launched! You can find it here:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B086Q8ZGTD

It's off to a pretty strong start and held in the top 1000 for a decent while. No way of knowing what the rest of the month will bring, but at least I've finished making all my promotional posts.

Next weekend, I still need to do my promotional push for the arted version of TLS. But aside from that, I am finally finishing the first phase of 2020. I knew that it would be a bit busy, and I've courted a little burnout, but I've finished all my main goals and prepped things for the rest of the year. Hopefully the rest of 2020 will be less stressful, including TLS story updates and wrapping up some side projects.


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Comments (12)
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User #3076718 - 13 Apr 20 04:02
Just recommended Street Cultivation, New Game Minus and TBS to a friend, he only does audio books though so I think he was going to pick up the ones that were available in that format.
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sierralee - 13 Apr 20 12:11
I appreciate this! Honest recommendations are still one of the most powerful forces in the book industry.
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User #9829041 - 14 Apr 20 10:53
Regarding a six-months old debate on engines for future projects... That might be old news in the RPGMaker community, but I've just discovered some people have managed to trick MV into a somewhat decent VN engine. I think (not a RPGMaker specialist by far) they use the default dialog system, with an eventless, single-image, map as the background, and a plugin to add the "fast forward text" feature. This is probably more troublesome and time-consuming than using Ren'Py for the pure VN parts, but has the advantage of giving access to the other features of MV, mainly the already coded inventory and battle system.
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sierralee - 14 Apr 20 16:02
This is relevant to my interests! It would lack some standard VN features, but I can definitely see potential uses. Is there any particular place this content is gathered?
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User #9829041 - 14 Apr 20 17:05
Sorry, that's pretty much all I know. I discovered this trick while playing Wicked Rouge (https://fidless.itch.io/wicked-rouge ; NSFW), when my brain computed this was actually made with RPGMaker MV (from the look of the shop and the saves, then by checking the files in the directory), and I was all "how the hell did they manage that?".
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sierralee - 14 Apr 20 19:34
That's more helpful than you might think! Because MV isn't really encrypted, I can just open their project and see exactly what plugins they've used. They have a ton, so I will need to investigate more later, but they don't look custom, so in theory I could do all the same things.
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User #664110 - 12 Apr 20 23:56
Emily looking kinda not Asian there, but it's a decent cover aside from that. Interesting blurry style, not sure what to call it. Good luck with your promotions.
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sierralee - 13 Apr 20 00:28
I honestly don't know either, but that's the style this artist does.
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User #5075998 - 15 Apr 20 13:30
Are maps in the art pack the same ones included in-game?
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sierralee - 15 Apr 20 13:44
There are larger resolution versions with more detail. However, you can see most of the same maps on the wiki.
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User #3428364 - 13 Apr 20 03:29
Wait is the 200+ images in the game or just the art pack?
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sierralee - 13 Apr 20 03:41
The art pack includes about 60 images that are larger versions of the ones in the game, plus fanart, maps, and essentially whatever else people asked for.
TLS 0.50.0 Released! Chapter 1 Art Update! 2020-04-10T22:17:02+00:00

Release time, everybody! I thought about pushing this to next week, but I'd prefer not to delay TLS releases any longer.


Link: https://mega.nz/file/T4cTgY4C#2pyvpnQTruJBjr0Nmez0U-nq3sZjMQ9DLDwOj16B4MQ

RTP: https://mega.nz/file/v40AjCbQ#J60h6jPk2jp96_7c7eL1zcm9owpQl10VjJm5cd0cnAs


TLS 0.50.0

- Grand art update: All scenes in Chapter 1 now have an illustrated image!

- Total added: 28 scenes, 5 joke scenes (52 images total)


I'm irrationally pleased that this major update is coming on such a round number. ^-^

To reduce total questions, there's an automatic event in the teleportation chamber that will answer several of them. If you just want to see the art, you can view almost all of it via the Reflect menu. However, I hope the hardcore people who repeatedly play, or anyone who wants to see the art in its natural context, will help me test all the changes.

This update was a bit more involved than you might think. I was only able to make everything work properly thanks to scripting assistance from Lamsey and Decanter. I've tried to test everything enough to avoid any crashes, but there may be softer bugs and something could always have been missed.

Some scene text has been shifted or changed to better fit with the images. For example, the Robin interruption scene is broken up so that the image itself can be the surprise. More of this could likely be done: consider me open to suggestions.

This is also the time to bring up any suggestions/issues about how scenes are displayed. For example, I've almost always put the art up for one final moment at the end, but if people don't like that, it can change.

In a week when this update goes public, I hope that it will lead to increased interest in TLS. I'm also open to suggestions for how to promote it. Honestly, I'm going to post on my usual forums and r/lewdgames... not sure what else. Do people still visit LewdGamer? Not looking forward to more promotion, but this is the time for it.

This is promotion weekend in general. More info on Sunday.


P.S. ...it just occurred to me that I never stated in the game that the "W" key can be used to hide the text box. I'll add that on my end, but I'm too tired to recompile.

P.P.S. Additional note: no need to report that the text box turns translucent unnecessarily if the NSFW switch is off. I'll correct all these when I'm feeling up to it.

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Comments (69)
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User #664110 - 10 Apr 20 23:30
Per the readme, controllers should be able to hide the textbox with R1 button, and it might be good to have some more people with controllers confirm this. This isn't mentioned in your post here or on Blogspot. It also belatedly occurs to me that some people might find it awkward to have the the "hide textbox" key next to the "skip text" key; it should be trivial to add Shift as another "hide textbox" key for PC players. As for promotion ideas, I'm not sure. I do think people still read LewdGamer. I know Steam has some special feed on its homepage for "major" game updates, but I'm not sure how one designates an update as "major" for that purpose. And on forums I would recommend changing thread titles to include an obvious note like "(H-SCENE ART ADDED to Chapter 1)" .
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 00:16
Oh, right. I don't know how many people are playing TLS with controllers, but hopefully some will speak up. Steam has essentially made all methods of updating equally useless. I'll mark it as a major update, but their algorithm is determined by popularity. And yeah, I'll be changing all the thread titles I can.
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User #2540339 - 12 Apr 20 17:06
The R1 button works for me to hide the textbox, same as for party swapping which also uses the W key. It's not actually R1 for me, though, since the default bindings set Q/W to the 'back'/'start' buttons on my controller (XBox 360) instead of the shoulder buttons. VX Ace's controller support seems a bit shonky - I also have to use an external program (Keysticks) to get the D-Pad working. The Shift key is already used for walk/run and scrolling in shops, and would also be next to a text-skip key (Ctrl), so if you add another binding, a different key would be better. Alt would also be problematic, since it's used for alt-tabbing. 'H' for 'hide' would maybe make sense. Many games have an in-game prompt showing the default controls when the player first gains control of the character - this might be a good addition for the prologue, since a number of people will be revisiting it?
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User #664110 - 13 Apr 20 02:41
Yeah, it's always a bit of a guessing game exactly which VX Ace controls get mapped to which controller buttons, sadly. Turns out differently for each controller. It's somewhat configurable in the F1 menu, under the Gamepad tab. I did think of H as a good mnemonic key which is also familiar for RenPy users. The problem is, VX Ace only allows certain keys to be bound, and H is not one of them. These keys are the arrow keys, F5-F9, and the specific keyboard keys listed in the F1 menu. PageDown also works at the moment, since it does whatever W does. Perhaps that will do.
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 01:38
The message in the teleport room says, "If you don't want to view the art, you can disable it in the menu. It will be on by default in new games or after seeing this message." So the switch enables art when on? Wouldn't it be much better to have the switch disable art when on, so it's on by default in old saves?
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 01:49
That would be logical, but the NSFW Check script looks to see if it's on. In theory it would probably be easy to invert the script, but I can't with any confidence.
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 02:00
It looks to me like a simple matter of modifying NSFW Check script lines 48, 55, 62, 75 to instead say: if $game_switches[6] = false It is Lamsey's script, though, so I invite him to speak up if there's something I've missed about this. Also on the subject of modifying Lamsey's work in ways he may wish to chime in on - rather than you having to manually correct all the h-scene Common Events to have a conditional for whether to make the message window background translucent, it seems like it should be trivial to add this line after line 50 of the NSFW Check script: Window_Message.lw_set_opaque(false) thus neatly folding the decision of whether to do that into the check for whether to show a CG. Certainly it seems to work when I test it.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 02:47
If there's an easy way of doing either/both, I'd certainly adopt it! If I'm parsing the latter correctly, it would set opaque to false automatically every time a CG is displayed? That would be handy, but I'll hold off in case there are other concerns or changes.
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 03:38
That's the idea.
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User #2540339 - 11 Apr 20 11:45
Auto-changing text box opacity: sure, that's a good idea, and exactly the sort of thing these common functions are intended to handle. The show_nsfw (and implicitly swap_nsfw) functions will now set the text boxes to translucent. If there's ever anything else you want to do every time one of these functions is called, then let me know. Inverting the switch check so the default "off" setting means "show the art": yup, that's logical. We'll also need to update the settings screen. From a UI perspective, I think it would be better if the wording and ordering of the scene art options were consistent with the "Battle Animations" option above, like this: https://www.dropbox.com/s/pbmep53sbnu4u5e/Screenshot%202020-04-11%2012.21.41.png?dl=0 This required a bit of tinkering so that the left option sets the switch on instead of off. I've also removed the blank line so that the "Shut Down Game" option is visible without scrolling, and I've updated the "Reset Options" function so it'll also reset the Scene Art setting. Here are updated versions of both scripts to achieve the above (feel free to request changes to the updated wording!): https://www.dropbox.com/s/dsjzu9wp5emwp3y/yanfly_system_options.rb?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/rffjzzqcdd96t22/nsfw_check.rb?dl=0 In addition to copying the above in, you'll need to: * remove the mid-scene calls to set the text box opacity * change the name of switch 6 to "Hide Scene Art", for clarity? * update the Intro event at game start so it no longer sets the switch on * update event EV038 in the teleportation chamber For the teleportation chamber event, I suggest something like the following to avoid bug reports from 0.49.0 players getting their setting flipped: * Update event page 1 so it doesn't change switch 6, and also set Self Switch B on * Update event page 2 to flip the setting if Self Switch A is on but B is off: https://www.dropbox.com/s/e4fb0pyl1zxtnby/nsfw_setting_fix.png?dl=0 * Add an empty "Self Switch B is ON" event page 3 If there's anything else you'd like tweaked, just let me know.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:50
Okay! I believe I've updated everything relevant. Working with page 2 on the teleportation chamber event is a good idea... I was prepared to just take some bug reports, but this is better.
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User #664110 - 13 Apr 20 07:14
Lamsey going ahead and implementing stuff I was planning to suggest, nice. One more thought - maybe we should automatically hide the text box when displaying a CG, just to get rid of that little arrow at the bottom of the screen? I don't think players really need that to guess that pushing a button will still advance the action, and it is slightly distracting.
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User #2540339 - 13 Apr 20 09:30
From a UI consistency point of view, my instinct is that it's better to keep the "press button to continue" prompt, but I can appreciate the perspective of not wanting it to get in the way of the art. Sierra, if you want this change made, just let me know!
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User #3376094 - 10 Apr 20 23:14
"However, I hope the hardcore people who repeatedly play, or anyone who wants to see the art in its natural context, will help me test all the changes." Me: "Ah, shit. Here we go again."
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User #14120479 - 11 Apr 20 01:04
You bastard! You stole my comment!!!!111
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User #6214130 - 11 Apr 20 08:47
I know Delgar Forest better than my own apartment at this point
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User #6216065 - 11 Apr 20 10:37
I'm thinking of starting a parallel run from scratch for this, but I'm not sure I'll make it past the intro - going outside into the zombie apocalypse and buying a new notebook.
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User #6214130 - 11 Apr 20 08:50
Congrats on reaching 0.50! Don't exactly know that many forums for discussing games like this. Maybe try f95, even though it's filled with pirates Maybe a few will grow a conscience, and support
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 09:04
There's already a thread there. I keep an eye on it for bug reports... and to chuckle at how their pirate links for TLS are somehow never up to date. I don't think it's worth trying to reach out to, though.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:27
Yeah, players in F95 will see the update and make their decisions. I don't check it anymore because it's better for my focus.
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sierralee - 10 Apr 20 22:19
Additional note: no need to report that the text box turns translucent unnecessarily if the NSFW switch is off. I'll correct all these when I'm feeling up to it.
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User #664110 - 10 Apr 20 23:32
You may want to edit this into the post, since the way Patreon comments display now means that older comments get hidden under a "show more" by default.
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User #2806447 - 12 Apr 20 15:39
Hey Sierra, is me again. I just got a new laptop and didn't bother porting over my save files from the last one, so I'll be doing a fresh spankin' through playthrough again. Also...some promotion stuff... let me drop you a message.
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 17:01
Thanks! I will reply to your message when I get some more time.
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User #16752833 - 11 Apr 20 00:38
It would be great if the images would not pixelate so much when playing in a large(r) resolution than default.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 00:56
I don't know if there's any solution to this, but if so, it's beyond my technical knowledge. How are you upsizing the game? Either your screen is much bigger than mine or you have better eyes.
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User #16752833 - 11 Apr 20 20:55
Hmm, screen is 1920x1200, doubled the size of the game window once by pressing F6
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 23:53
Isn't this just the same thing as how the rest of the game looks when resized, doubling the dimensions of each pixel? Would need to add some sort of soften/anti-alias effect to the "show picture" routines specifically (and check for increased window size) or to the script that makes the window bigger (which would affect the whole game). Alternately, use larger pictures and a script that resizes them to fit whatever window size is being used. I don't think there's any support in the game's current code for this, and I've never seen another RPG Maker game do it, but I suppose it's theoretically possible if one cribbed some code from another Ruby project. I don't intend to attempt it myself.
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User #9346637 - 12 Apr 20 12:42
"And then you die" is really low contrast on that background. Really low.
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 17:01
Yeah. I didn't want to, but I'm giving it a transparent background for readability.
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User #12864231 - 11 Apr 20 04:19
I like the art style for the prologue, but that's mainly because I played past the prologue. I'm wondering if it would be better to make it so that the first picture people see is the Simon x Riala scene or maybe the Kai death scene. Either way, thanks for this update! I really do appreciate al your work on all your games!
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:26
Yeah, the prologue art style was much discussed, quite a while ago. There are arguments for both sides, but in the end I made the decision to do it this way.
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User #6250455 - 11 Apr 20 22:46
It increased my interest.
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User #178986 - 12 Apr 20 11:19
Did a reply of the game, the only scene that feels off is the one with Trin. All the other ones follow the scenes but the art comes up before Simon reads the contract when she goes to remove her dress but shows Simon over her at the beginning of the scene.
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 17:00
Thanks for this report. Usually I like to fix bugs before I reply, but in this case I'll need a bit more time to look into it. I definitely want the art to flow along with the scenes.
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User #3376094 - 14 Apr 20 20:58
So, first thing, I love the different styles of art being used as a sort of shorthand to know who's POV we're watching. I'm really looking forward to, for instance, some of Robin's scenes if that holds up as a theme. Second thing: I never noticed this before, but Q'um doesn't have any wings. I thought all succubi had wings unless they were naga or one of the other variant races. Did something happen to her wings and I just never noticed it? Is it ever brought up in conversation? Did...did something happen? Like, in her backstory? I know there's...some darker parts, there. Did the succubi or soldiers do something to her wings? Does Simon need to go on a murder-spree?
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User #664110 - 14 Apr 20 23:36
In the case of Qum D'umpe specifically, her wings are just small, easily hidden by her glorious pink cascade of hair. You can see her wings in some h-scenes. For succubi in general, the wiki page on TLS races says, "Succubi are mostly human-like, but usually have pointed ears, horns, bat-like wings, and spaded tails. One or more of these characteristics may be absent for a minority of succubi" You may have noticed Riala doesn't have horns or pointed ears, for example.
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User #16888332 - 15 Apr 20 13:26
SL should write in a satire "hot springs episode" scene with the succubi comparing their "sizes" and Simon getting the wrong idea. Anyone who watches anime knows what I'm talking about.
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User #3376094 - 15 Apr 20 14:47
Phew. Thank you. My inner Carina was getting antsy.
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User #3011189 - 10 Apr 20 23:07
OK, one thing that you might want to change... using Reflect skill drop you back to game once scene is completed. So if you want to look at all the new art, you need to keep calling up menu, selecting skills, selecting Simon, selecting his Reflect skill and then finding the scene you want to see. It might be fine if you want to see one scene every once in awhile, but for someone wanting to see all the scenes that were unlocked... well, that process can get somewhat annoying. Maybe you could have us return to scene selection menu?
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 00:12
Not unreasonable, but changing this isn't within my capabilities.
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User #3011189 - 11 Apr 20 01:34
Not a big issue... and certainly not for someone who play from start.
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User #969700 - 11 Apr 20 06:56
Congratulations! (I don't really think Lewdgamer is relevant anymore, but it wouldn't hurt to try. They do basically no reporting and are just a release/kickstart announcement ticker at this point.)
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:26
Thanks! That sort of confirms my impression about Lewdgamer, but like you said, it wouldn't hurt to try.
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User #13318901 - 12 Apr 20 02:44
Replaying to see the new art. Haven't finished chapter 1 yet but so far it looks amazing. I love how the art follows the scene instead of just having 1 picture for all of it, I also liked how the art reflected how little we care about the Chosen. All in all another excellent update.
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 03:25
Very glad to hear you're enjoying the new art. ^-^
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User #2540339 - 12 Apr 20 16:17
Just finished a full playthrough of chapter one - everything seems to be working as expected, apart from the bits already mentioned in previous comments. Some notes/suggestions in no particular order: Tal's portrait is no longer shown, now that he's got his majestic full-body hero shot in the intro. Should it be shown on his first spoken line, same as other characters? Some of the scene variants are quite subtle changes in only a small part of the image, which means the change is difficult to spot when they're shown immediately after hiding the text box (see e.g. Wendis Dream and especially the Trin scene described below). I think that using the fading function would help with this, since the eye is drawn by the transition. Is it intentional that the image is still visible here? Previously these lines were delivered back on the map after the scene has ended, which I think worked better. https://www.dropbox.com/s/f5elgp1n6ds2haz/Screenshot%202020-04-11%2016.18.30.png?dl=0 Trin's first scene needs some more rewriting to match the art. This image is displayed immediately after Simon receives the contract and says "Hmm": https://www.dropbox.com/s/txg4igtn9xyzhc9/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2016.47.41.png?dl=0 We then see this: https://www.dropbox.com/s/o9fzhspabgmx7a0/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2016.49.50.png?dl=0 But he's already gotten his cock out. It'd be better if the image was shown after that line, but before this one: https://www.dropbox.com/s/n5jwg8s3pulr58c/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2016.50.37.png?dl=0 It's quite difficult to notice that Simon's cock grows in the variant that's shown after the "And.." line, since the text is hiding it; as mentioned above, I think using the fade function would help to make this more noticeable. After that, we get to this page: https://www.dropbox.com/s/othxlhfr2zodrlw/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2016.55.57.png?dl=0 The first two lines seem inconsistent - it's not clear what Simon was going "Hmm" about if Trin hadn't already given him the contract, and she's definitely already taken her dress off. Finally, towards the end, it says "his cock still wasn't hard" despite the earlier hardening. anguish long -> anguish for long? https://www.dropbox.com/s/ywiicqii56paaa4/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2011.35.43.png?dl=0 Might be better to show the image after this box rather than before it, since the image shows the results of the second paragraph: https://www.dropbox.com/s/jdmkgcwqlo8bft1/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2011.37.46.png?dl=0 "beneath him" is slightly inconsistent, since Cumdump is on top in the already-shown image. Simon doesn't roll her on top until the following text box. https://www.dropbox.com/s/olzvqaqj8tptk7a/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2012.32.17.png?dl=0 Finally, some random potential clarifications I noticed along the way: "create something" could be read as making something out of the pile of rocks. Maybe change to "create a power that could be used in combat" or similar? https://www.dropbox.com/s/w74qbvprh68s8qq/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2012.59.02.png?dl=0 perhaps change "I don't have the cash" to "I don't have the cash free right now" or similar, to make it clear that it's about liquidity rather than wealth? https://www.dropbox.com/s/5ul4knbqiygskmy/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2014.44.44.png?dl=0 "combat mode" sounds kinda technological - maybe "combat stance" instead? https://www.dropbox.com/s/4r39eflfswm5uaq/Screenshot%202020-04-12%2015.28.06.png?dl=0
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 21:17
Thanks for your detailed feedback! >Tal's portrait is no longer shown, now that he's got his majestic full-body hero shot in the intro. Should it be shown on his first spoken line, same as other characters? I'm not sure. I don't think the image is compelling enough that it needs to be in there, and him not having one gives more the sense that he's the player character. >Is it intentional that the image is still visible here? Previously these lines were delivered back on the map after the scene has ended, which I think worked better.  Hmm, I guess I agree that's a bit better. >Trin's first scene needs some more rewriting to match the art. I've switched things all over the place. The new scene should flow better.
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User #664110 - 13 Apr 20 04:18
>anguish long -> anguish for long? "long" can be used as an adverb. >"combat mode" sounds kinda technological - maybe "combat stance" instead? An example of the Tiffany Problem perhaps? "mode" is quite an old word... Anyway, "stance" implies an immediacy that I'm unsure is appropriate. >I'm not sure. I don't think the image is compelling enough that it needs to be in there, and him not having one gives more the sense that he's the player character. Isn't that already given away by the time we get to Tal, what with the Kai death twist and Simon as the party leader?
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User #2540339 - 13 Apr 20 09:21
Doh, I wrote Tal when I meant Kai. In fairness, they do look quite similar :-P On mode, it might be the Tiffany Problem or it might just be me being a computer geek and so usually seeing 'mode' used in that context (outside of its musical/mathematical meanings, of course - I assume the Unzombies are not singing). WRT long - might be a British thing, that usage just sounded a little odd to me. Apparently it depends on if it's an affirmative clause or not. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/long
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User #664110 - 13 Apr 20 09:52
>Doh, I wrote Tal when I meant Kai. In fairness, they do look quite similar :-P Oh? Well, even if by accident, what you said made some sense - we no longer use MainActor1-3.png for anything, and we could be showing it when Tal is introduced. >I assume the Unzombies are not singing Hey, you don't know. Singing zombies could prove quite... thrilling. >Apparently it depends on if it's an affirmative clause or not. The British don't say things like "this won't take long" or "won't be long until"? I'd be surprised.
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User #2540339 - 13 Apr 20 10:33
We do say those - they're not affirmative clauses. We wouldn't say "this will take long" or "will be long until". The sentence in the scene uses an intransitive verb in the conditional tense, which is slightly different from those examples - I'd say "before I could type for long" in preference to "before I could type long", for instance. Not sure if the latter sounds more natural in American.
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User #664110 - 13 Apr 20 10:54
I don't know about more natural, but "Before she could anguish for long" sounds needlessly wordy to my ear when "before long" is a very natural-sounding phrase, and this a natural-sounding adaptation of it. Perhaps that's the one the British don't say. In any case, Cambridge may mention affirmative clauses, but Merriam-Webster doesn't, which may indicate a regional difference.
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sierralee - 13 Apr 20 12:21
>An example of the Tiffany Problem perhaps? "mode" is quite an old word... Anyway, "stance" implies an immediacy that I'm unsure is appropriate. I slightly rewrote based on "stance" because I agree this rings modern. >Isn't that already given away by the time we get to Tal, what with the Kai death twist and Simon as the party leader? I knew he meant Kai, but you have a point. Having one Chosen introduced with his self-image and the second introduced with the picture could be a nice way to show the shift in perspective. >anguish for long Both of these read fine to me, so it's one of those cases where I made the change in case it readers better to a wider audience.
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User #3011189 - 10 Apr 20 23:27
One question: is "Aka + Hilstara" scene with two of them in Yhilin palace not done? Or did I found a bug? I'm asking because "Trin + Yarra" scene that is listed in Reflect menu after that one have CG...
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 00:12
The Reflect menu is not always 100% in chronological order. Is that scene accessible in Chapter 1?
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User #3011189 - 11 Apr 20 01:32
I can't remember at this point. It does happen in Yhilin before we leave (if I remember correctly, it's triggered in Yhilin palace) but I can't remember at which point we start with Chapter 2. I think it is. If it would help it's a scene that start with Aka and Hilstara sparing... which quickly progress to threesome with Simon. In Reflect menu, that scene is located between "Megail Reconciliation" and "Trin + Yarra"
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 01:46
I know which scene you're talking about. I'm moderately confident that it's only accessible at the start of Chapter 2. But I don't remember exactly where it's triggered and it would take a while to fumble around the old maps.
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User #178986 - 11 Apr 20 03:09
Chapter 1, returning from investments if the combined score is great enough
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 03:14
What map?
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User #664110 - 11 Apr 20 05:17
The Court, the 3 entrance tiles to the palace, page 3.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:24
Thanks!
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User #211417 - 11 Apr 20 10:54
The "Yarra Teasing" scene (scene involving Tal & Aka) doesn't seem to have art?
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 12:28
This one is intentional, as it's really just a subcomponent of Aka's first scene.
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User #8176682 - 11 Apr 20 14:57
Well I have replayed the most recent update after Eustrin and I have restored wendis. Did the research and see her in the harem list. But when looking at the save file for harem size. It's still at 21 not 22
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User #8176682 - 11 Apr 20 14:59
I get tertia added to the harem list and it jumps up to 23.
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sierralee - 11 Apr 20 21:50
I think this is purely cosmetic and temporary, but I've tried to fix the variable.
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User #3851879 - 12 Apr 20 23:44
I have 80 hours in the game and I never knew about the w key thing. Holy shit. Also love the art of the hero in the beginning how it's stylized almost like a children's story book.
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sierralee - 13 Apr 20 12:14
Oh, I've had the text hiding script disabled until now. It was an invitation to false bug reports until Decanter helped me improve it. Glad you like the art. ^-^
April 5 Update
April 5 Updatemore_vert
2020-04-05T23:26:28+00:00
Post file flag
April 5 Update 2020-04-05T23:26:28+00:00close

Buckle up, this is a big post with a lot going on! It won't all be relevant to everyone, but please check for the parts that are relevant to you.

Fanart: The image for this post was drawn by Annikath, not as a commission, just as fanart she wanted to do. Qum is having a good time. ^-^

TLS Art Update: Originally, I was going to do a poll asking you guys if you wanted a faster update focused on the art, or a delayed update that would have the new art plus other content. Based on how my progress has gone overall, I think an art update would be better, as a later update would risk exacerbating the delays. However, this is the post to raise objections or point out anything I might have missed.

(To preempt the common question: yes, you will be able to turn off the images if you don't want them. I've already gotten this figured out thanks to Lamsey and Decanter. If you don't care about the images at all, I just ask for your patience, as a lot of people have been waiting for this update for a long time.)

Fan Video: DankPotatoes has created more TLS memes, this time based on Vine videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMkLG7gjNuo

Street Cultivation 2: It's coming out this Friday, so cross your fingers. Will post a link in the next update.

Street Cultivation 3: This has taken a lot out of me, but it's getting fairly close to complete. I look forward to finishing it this week, then hopefully my plate will be much clearer.


So yes, there's a lot going on overall. But by the end of April, I hope that I will have accomplished a large number of goals for 2020, which will leave me with some freedom I will very much enjoy. More on that when the time comes!


Media (1)


qumT1.png (2.7MiB)

Comments (16)
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User #8176682 - 6 Apr 20 00:27
Does that really mean to say this April is focused on only the art thing of TLS and May is when new content comes out? The Coronavirus is bad enough don't need that kind of news added to it. And I mean this in a humorous way. Whatever works for you Sierra.
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 01:28
What I can say is that the art update will come first.
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User #8176682 - 6 Apr 20 01:34
I can accept that. Hope everyone is staying safe
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User #6214130 - 6 Apr 20 10:13
Thanks for linking my video :) Glad to hear things are moving forward on all fronts. Stay healthy!
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 14:13
Thanks for your continued enthusiasm for my work!
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User #27550953 - 12 Apr 20 20:00
Hi! Quick question as I’m slightly confused. Is the art update already live on steam or is there a delay with the steam version cuz I’ve been planning on replaying and just waiting for the first art update to do so
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sierralee - 12 Apr 20 20:11
The update is available to $5 backers. The Steam version won't update until the public release on Friday.
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User #8176682 - 6 Apr 20 00:46
Something I just noticed that Qum'dumpe's skin looks like a normal female humans skin in that picture. I was under the impression her skin and hair were pinkish.
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 01:29
Her skin is slightly pinkish. I'm not whether it's more normal in that scene or whether it just looks less pink in comparison to the tentacles and background. ^-^
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User #4787752 - 6 Apr 20 05:23
TLS art and new SL novel? Thank you always for the wonderful creative work you do! Also poor bottom left mopey tentacle. Left out of the fun
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 14:12
Maybe it's a voyeur tentacle. ^-^
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User #4405726 - 10 Apr 20 07:51
LOVE the fan art!!!!!
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User #2909283 - 5 Apr 20 23:53
I dub that fanart "Simon tests his Valentine's Day themed tentacles." As for the update preference, while I want Neranda and Elleani inducted asap (and, well, more goddesses to fuck) I do believe an art only update is the way to go, especially for the first batch. That way, if there's crazy world ending bugs you only have one potential cause.
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 01:28
Based on how things are going, Neranda will almost certainly be in version 0.51.0, if you have the variables for it. Hopefully I'll get all the core script bugs worked out before anyone plays it, but I won't be able to replay the whole first chapter repeatedly, so I hope others will help test.
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User #8002177 - 5 Apr 20 23:39
Is the only way to view the art by restarting? Or will they be viewable in the memory recall ability like the script
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sierralee - 6 Apr 20 01:23
They'll be viewable via the Reflect skill.
March 29 Update 2020-03-29T18:15:22+00:00

Momentum! Momentum is precious. I feel so much better on a day-to-day basis when I'm enjoying my work and making significant progress. ^-^ I hope everyone is managing with the world's current difficulties. I'm getting closer to finishing two things, one of which will come sooner and the other later.

Right now I'm writing the third (and likely last) novel in the Street Cultivation series. I have many thoughts about this, but I want to keep this short. Once this is done, I will have completed all the writing I have scheduled for an entire year. If I write anything else, it will be unplanned.

(The audio deal on The Brightest Shadow went through, by the way, with Podium contracting the entire series. Not much else to say about it yet.)

Finally, we are getting very close to the illustrated version of TLS! All of the first chapter will have scenes, over 25 in total. $10 backers can look forward to another scene preview soon, and everyone will get a poll where I ask about how to divide the next set of releases. But for now, I return to work.

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Comments (22)
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User #2909283 - 29 Mar 20 18:31
Sounds like you're on a roll. Just make sure you don't stop to eat it.
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User #8176682 - 29 Mar 20 21:00
And take a shower lolz.
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User #5341776 - 29 Mar 20 21:27
We've got a novel TLS bug from the wiki forums, someone found another exotic way to break the game in Aka's Route by behaving in an extremely eccentric manner. OK. Basically, to get through the Aka's Route iteration of the Thaumaturgical Order trials, you have to complete three out of four tests in the Trials 2 map and advance to event ID 008 at coordinates (008, 011). When you get there, Robin requests that the group complete all four tests, and self switch A is set on if the player agrees while self switch B is set on if they don't. The only way to turn on self switch B after that is to complete all four tests. OK. Now, you have the option to have Trin complete any of the four tests besides the highly, highly specialized test that only she can complete, but this sets the [0397: Trin Tired] switch on, and she refuses to complete any of the other tests until it has been cleared. The switch can be cleared by completing one of the other 4 major quest objectives, getting the Trin x Altina scene in by sleeping in the bed in the secret tunnels, or by sleeping in the bed after all the other four major quest objectives are complete (Aka Progress >= 4) AND the Trin x Altina scene has been triggered. OK, so here's what our talented player managed to do. He never rescued Altina. He completed all the other four Aka Progress quests before starting the Order Trials. He accepted Robin's request that all four tests be completed. He had Trin complete one of the tests besides the highly highly specialized one. He couldn't get Trin untired by resting because he had no Altina and thus never got the Trin x Altina scene. This is admittedly a pretty niche scenario, but it suggests another potential game breaker: A REALLY impecunious and stupid player who gets to this point in Aka's Route with less than 1150 sx and nothing they can afford (or are willing) to sell, and no enemies left to fight, thus blocking the alchemy test and blocking further progress. I'd suggest two fixes. First, the bed event in Secret Tunnels 2 should have its page 4 conditionals set from Aka Progress >=4 and Self Switch B = On to Aka Progress >=4 and Self Switch A = On. Second, for the aforementioned event blocking you from completing the Trials 2 map, add a sixth page for when Aka Progress >= 4 and Self Switch A = On, with dialogue allowing Aka to reconsider doing all four tests and allowing the player to choose to do change the Self Switch from A to B with a penalty to Order Test Points matching or exceeding the +1 bonus they got for agreeing to complete all four tests.
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User #664110 - 29 Mar 20 22:46
Rather than a patch for this particular Trin Tired issue, I would suggest removing the mechanic where Trin gets Tired in the first place. It doesn't seem to serve any purpose except to mystify the player (and make Trin look like a little shit, but we already knew that about her). Based on what wiki commenters ask for help with most often, am generally starting to think that early section of Chapter 2 could stand some eventual redesigning; it's got the tendency of players to get blindsided by it ending, and the odd opaque measure of route efficiency, and I'm not sure allowing players to miss Altina was actually a good idea, considering how many seem to learn it was even possible to save her only later while looking at a guide (most often a guide for Aka's route wondering how they're supposed to do it with just two party members).
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User #9585089 - 30 Mar 20 00:46
I'm honestly surprised you guys still remember what happened in chapter 2.
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sierralee - 30 Mar 20 03:36
The idea with Trin was to emphasize that she's less cooperative without Simon around, as another mechanic to make the split routes feel distinct. I might be willing to part with it for the sake of a smoother player experience, but I'll grumble about it.  In any case, at the moment I don't really have the bandwidth to make retroactive changes without a high risk of added errors.
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User #5341776 - 30 Mar 20 04:27
We understand. Given how long it took for someone to get themselves into this particular pickle jar without an older save, it's hardly a high priority for 0.50, but I'd hope it can get looked at in 0.51. FWIW, I think the adjustments I suggested will make the originally broached issue go away, but, as noted, I'm not the world's greatest RPG Maker event code expert. As long as we're complaining about problems in old content, I'd suggest adding a faceless dialogue box after the prologue but early in Ch1 explaining the use of the save feature and suggesting that the player keep multiple saves. We see a lot of cases where people paint themselves into an undesired outcome because they're used to modern autosaving features and thus don't save until they hit a game over early on or don't use more than one save slot. This compounds the "early ch2 blindsiding issue" Decanter describes above. The missing Altina issue could be mitigated by an extra page on the event for Feroholm on the Feroholm regional map triggered by the V9 Retread switch that has Simon say something like "I'd like to try and rescue Altina before we return to Feroholm, she should be in the Withered Mountain castle to the west." if she hasn't been rescued and then setting a Self Switch A on that prevents the message from being seen again. It's on their own heads from there if they ignore this.
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User #6214130 - 30 Mar 20 09:02
Real talk though: Does it sound likely that any player will ever naturally end up in this scenario with a tired Trin, missing Altina, all other objectives completed AND a completely empty Sx purse and sellable inventory? If fixing an issue that no one ever is like to encounter runs the risk of creating more issues that could potentionally get in the way of more people, is it really a good idea to bother?
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User #5341776 - 30 Mar 20 18:00
Clarification: There are two potential ways to get stuck. You can get locked out of the ability to have Trin take a test that you must complete to advance, and it is theoretically possible to get stuck without enough Sx to complete the alchemy test. The first one has been observed in nature. The second is a hypothetical. Even I have to admit that anyone who has no cash for the alchemy test because they splurged on fire charms probably deserves to be stuck. Admittedly, the last time I brought SL a bug in Aka's Route, the solution caused cascading issues, but that was because we were messing with the exit in a high traffic map. Messing with the event code in the trials and the secret tunnels is less likely to have cascading side effects.
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User #3428364 - 29 Mar 20 18:19
Congratulations! Looking forward to the audio book.
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sierralee - 29 Mar 20 21:12
Thanks! Not sure when it will be finished, but I'll update you here.
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User #6214130 - 30 Mar 20 12:31
Hey Sierra. What's the best measurement for the success of an artist in this day and age? Trick question: It's when your fans start creating godawful vine parodies about the characters you write. Hope you'll get some fun out of it, and feel free to link it in next week's update, if you enjoy it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMkLG7gjNuo&feature=youtu.be M̶a̶n̶,̶ ̶I̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶t̶o̶o̶ ̶m̶u̶c̶h̶ ̶s̶p̶a̶r̶e̶ ̶t̶i̶m̶e̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶s̶e̶ ̶c̶o̶r̶o̶n̶a̶ ̶d̶a̶y̶s̶
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sierralee - 30 Mar 20 15:53
Haha, glad to see you're having fun. I always felt that the true measure of success was when people start writing fanfiction that crosses over with Naruto or Harry Potter. Stay safe with all that time on your hands!
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User #5341776 - 30 Mar 20 17:41
Remember to wash your hands thoroughly to remove all time from them. Covid can persist for an indefinite number of hours on an hour of time.
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User #4787752 - 30 Mar 20 18:05
ONe of the best things I've ever been able to witness. All the ones with Annah were golden!
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User #6214130 - 30 Mar 20 21:37
Thanks. Tossing content into a vacuum, where you can't see people's reaction to it is always a bit intimidating. I'm glad to hear from those who enjoyed it.
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User #664110 - 29 Mar 20 19:48
Many surprises packed into that second paragraph - that you're ending the SC series at 3, that you aren't starting TBS 2 this year, that you have writing targets on a yearly scale, that you'd write for 1/4 of a year and then not the latter 3/4. As ever, I look forward to whatever you put out.
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sierralee - 29 Mar 20 21:17
More surprises than I intended, actually! This update was a bit rushed because I'm focused on writing, so some clarifications: 1) Though there's theoretical content for SC 4+, I don't know if I'll write it. Soft ending. 2) The main draft of TBS2 is already written. I will do another draft and beta reading throughout this year for an early 2021 release. Just want to do more TLS work first. 3) I have smaller writing targets as well, but yes, I plan many things yearly. 4) It's unlikely that I won't write for the rest of the year, it will just be that all known quantities with intended release dates are mostly done.
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User #14961608 - 30 Mar 20 01:28
If you write only 3 in the sc series would you still consider writing stories in that universe?
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sierralee - 30 Mar 20 03:37
If I return to the SC universe, it would be a continuation of the stories of Rick/Melissa/etc.
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User #8176682 - 29 Mar 20 21:04
But this update does come with a feature to turn the illustrations on/off right?
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sierralee - 29 Mar 20 21:12
Yes, it will.
March 22 Update
March 22 Updatemore_vert
2020-03-22T20:05:39+00:00
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March 22 Update 2020-03-22T20:05:39+00:00close

There are more important things going on in the world than my work, but since this is an update on that: this week sucked, creatively. I put in long hours and worked hard, but I just didn't make progress like I'd wanted because things kept coming up.

For example, Crescentia went all in on work for OEA. Usually I provide feedback or approve art only once every week or less, but recently I've been making multiple decisions a day. That involves going back and forth on corrections and checking notes. On top of that, we finished one phase and the Wolfenstahl team wants to rush finishing the next, so I needed to negotiate some more details and carefully lay out the commissions in a way I hadn't intended. I've attached one of the many new CGs to give you something to look at.

Or another thing that's technically good: I didn't expect The Brightest Shadow to get much interest from audiobook publishers, but I actually have two different ones asking for rights. So I needed to talk to their reps and parse the contracts. It's harder than it sounds, because one pays royalties from gross profits, the other from net... and neither of those even vaguely resembles the cover price on an audiobook. Plus there are qualitative components to the contracts that I need to weigh. It's important to get all that right, because these contracts are for seven years minimum.

This kind of thing really erodes my creative work. When something wipes out a chunk of hours, the remainder in a given day tends to get gobbled up by all the bugfixes, emails, comments, etc. Not that I'm so busy I never get empty periods where I can get work done, but when I do, I tend to be drained and not in the mood to exert myself creatively.

I meant to do more lore promo posts for TBS, but just didn't feel up to it. The pre-prepared posts are still going up on the blog, if you're interested:

https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/

Anyway, please be patient while I try to do what's best for the long term. Street Cultivation 2 is going to launch next month. If anybody wants an early copy, just message me and I'll send you one.

PS: There's a walkthrough-type question in the community tab that I assume people missed. If anyone wants to help out a player with the optional dungeon, check here:

https://www.patreon.com/posts/35132409


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Comments (17)
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User #10518194 - 22 Mar 20 20:41
Though I don't read novels anymore I am completely fine with you pursuing success in types of media that I no longer appreciate. Especially when you're at least making some progress on content like OEA which I definitely appreciate.
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sierralee - 22 Mar 20 21:26
I appreciate your understanding on this. Since all of you are supporting me as a creator, I try to be transparent about how I'm investing my time.
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User #2909283 - 22 Mar 20 20:38
Come on now Sierra, that's obviously Simon and Qum illusioned as an orc and a busty priestess that's been mindbroken. Looks like she's REALLY getting into roleplaying.
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sierralee - 22 Mar 20 21:26
If you use illusions for everything, ALL media are TLS in the end.
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User #2909283 - 22 Mar 20 21:37
Man, the succubi have amazing imaginations if the Mass Effect relationships are just them liberally using illusions.
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User #6838874 - 22 Mar 20 20:51
Things splitting your time so much obviously sucks, but this being to further your ongoing project and because of your success is grand! So; good on yer!
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sierralee - 22 Mar 20 21:27
Glad to have that attitude! I just try to be direct when things aren't going well.
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User #4787752 - 28 Mar 20 23:29
Current Quarantine has given me quite a bit of time, and I've spent a fair amount of it reading and then re-reading The Brightest Shadow. It's fantastic SL simply fantastic. Thank you so much for the work you do, you should be proud!
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sierralee - 29 Mar 20 00:30
Thank you, that's great to hear! If you use either site, please review on Amazon/Goodreads. The book has done decently, but it could use all the help it can get.
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User #4787752 - 29 Mar 20 02:25
Already done! But I'll do some word of mouth recommending to some family who also are bored during the crisis.
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sierralee - 29 Mar 20 04:16
Both are much appreciated! I'm passionate about TBS, so of course I intend to continue the project until it's completed. But I hope that it can build a fandom in the same way that TLS has, because I've found it very rewarding. ^-^
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User #2658855 - 23 Mar 20 07:05
Take your time, as far as I'm concerned. Take a walk every now and then, step away. Enjoy a sunrise or the wind simply touching you. It sounds cheesy, but these little things can give one a bit of peace and clarity.
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sierralee - 23 Mar 20 18:49
I appreciate your encouragement!
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User #1001252 - 22 Mar 20 22:23
I just hope you don't get too overwhelmed with everything going on and experience the dreaded burnout. I hope you are taking whatever breaks you need to clear your head for a moment. Because honestly, just reading all the things you are trying to do sounds exhausting. I trust you know your limits, and know when to step back. But, sometimes even the best of us can push ourselves too far. So yeah, basically, just take care of yourself.
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sierralee - 23 Mar 20 18:49
Yeah, I hope so too. Having supportive patrons definitely helps me feel like I can relax sometimes. ^-^
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User #2504558 - 22 Mar 20 20:14
I mainly consume books as audiobooks these days, so if The Brightest Shadow gets one I'll definitely get it. I'm a big fan of Crescentia's art, so I'm excited to see what she does for Once Ever After!
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sierralee - 22 Mar 20 21:25
Unless something goes strangely, TBS should be getting an audiobook eventually. And OEA should be getting closer and closer to release!
Quarantine Sale 2020-03-18T22:46:48+00:00

Current events are hitting some people hard, in varying ways. Some are trapped at home more than usual, while others have messaged me to say they need to pull their patronage to get through. I absolutely want everyone to prioritize what matters most in life! I'll still be here, working away at my projects, so there's no need to apologize.

For those who have extra time on their hands, I wish I had a new release for you, but the best I can do is a sale on old stuff. All my games are 50-80% off on Steam or itch.io:

https://store.steampowered.com/developer/sierralee

https://itch.io/s/28735/quarantine-sale

But those are more intended for casual fans than patrons. For you guys, I'll ignore my usual calculations regarding total patronage time. If you've been a patron for a little while and you want one of my games or novels, just message me! Hopefully that won't get out of hand and I can give people something to take their minds off the seriousness. ^-^

Meanwhile, it's a busy week. I didn't expect my novel to get much audiobook interest, but I actually have competing offers. It's confusing stuff (unclear gross profit vs net profit calculations) but this is a lot better than no interest. I'll say more about it next weekly update, when things will hopefully be clearer.

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Comments (18)
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User #8176270 - 19 Mar 20 21:31
Stay safe and healthy Sierra! As a gamer, not much would change even if some degree of quarantine was imposed in the area i live to be frank. Now that i got the chance tho, could i ask for a copy of Desecration of Wings? I played the beta release and enjoyed it pretty much.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 21:47
Just sent it to you! I can also do a Steam key if you prefer. Regardless, I hope your gaming keeps you well. ^-^
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User #8176270 - 19 Mar 20 22:04
That and the spring weather keep my spirits high, thanks for the quick response.^^
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User #386344 - 19 Mar 20 03:07
Bought the NGM boxset and TBS today before this post! Oh well, consider it a tip for all your years of work. Stay safe and good luck!
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 03:43
Your tip also helps give the books more visibility, so it's much appreciated! You stay safe and healthy too!
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User #2909283 - 19 Mar 20 00:18
What? You mean we don't get an emergency build where Yarra quarantines the whole harem and it's revealed to be a ploy to get a weeklong orgy? Stay safe Sierra.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 02:11
I did actually consider doing something special for a joke, but also didn't want to overemphasize something everyone is sick of getting covered.
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User #6214130 - 21 Mar 20 12:29
A wise choice if you ask me. So many other indie content creators have a weird obsession with reactionary content and seasonal specials. Don't think I've ever known a situation where the fans wanted that more than they wanted a continuation to the main game. Like, if we are getting bombarded with christmas in our lives, families, commercials and ware-selections in stores, then we probably don't need it in our entertainment as well.
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User #5388767 - 19 Mar 20 00:49
stay safe sierra
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 02:11
Thanks, you too!
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User #9585089 - 19 Mar 20 12:36
I'm actaully inetersted in Once ever After. What is the status of the game?
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 13:01
This Steam update is probably the best explanation: https://steamcommunity.com/app/951860/eventcomments/1746765743929189538 It's actually been about a year since patrons played the major builds, but I've been focused on TLS since then. At some point this year, I intend to set aside some time to polish all the new content I've produced and let patrons play a full version. After that comes the visual upgrades.
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User #5442204 - 21 Mar 20 20:07
That's great i like how you are having it get it's own personality by the costum spritres and such, my only issue is that i use steam and i dont think the patches you added for the lewd stuff works anymore, but not sure.
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User #8176682 - 19 Mar 20 00:06
Well I wish you luck in your endeavors.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 02:11
Thank you!
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User #664110 - 19 Mar 20 06:46
Huh, I thought you did have an unreleased novel of some sort. Anyway, could I get a copy of that boxset? I don't think I've read the Izzy chapter. Good luck with audiobooking. Was sorry to read that the narrator for NGM bailed on books 2 and 3.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 13:00
Oh, I guess there's the incoming one, but I didn't know how many people here were interested. I can message you the boxset, but don't have a compiled link. What format do you want?
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User #664110 - 19 Mar 20 23:02
EPUB would be preferable. As for the other book, I can't speak for everyone here but I'm generally interested in things you write.
March 15 Update: NGM Boxset Release 2020-03-15T21:02:16+00:00

Promotion is the worst. -_- It's just soul-draining for me, even when it's successful. Yesterday wasn't even effective, as my map post didn't really catch on:

https://old.reddit.com/r/worldbuilding/comments/fio9k0/the_chorhan_expanse_one_region_x_three_cultures/

Click through if you want to read some TBS worldbuilding that I thought was interesting, anyway! On that note, after the much better than expected launch, TBS is now doing just okay. Far from a shameful ranking, but not quite as hoped. Thanks to all of you who supported, allowing it to punch above its weight for a while. If you want to throw in a review or anything else, that would still help.

Meanwhile, my most recent release is a less exciting boxset of my finished trilogy, New Game Minus. If you've been waiting to try this for cheap... you can probably get a free one as a patron, I'll just need to create another version. But it's also cheap or free on Kindle Unlimited. Boxsets are straightforward because they almost instantly turn a profit, and this one hasn't done bad at all for an old series.

Unfortunately, I've had a bad week creatively. I had writing goals and I did not hit them. I did take some time for a real break, though, which was pleasant. It would be more pleasant if I could really fall into some creative work in the near future here.

Since a couple of you have asked me about COVID-19 stuff: don't worry, I'm fine. No local cases, many institutions shut down but not total lockdown. I have plenty of food and I don't want to go outside anyway. If you're in an impacted region, take sensible precautions and stay healthy! Maybe one of my games or books can entertain meanwhile. ^-^

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Comments (46)
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User #4787752 - 15 Mar 20 21:27
Well, if you want a silver lining. There might be more people buying kindle books now that business and schools are off most places. So maybe you'll get a second surge!
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sierralee - 15 Mar 20 21:50
This is a real thing! There have been threads where people invited authors to recommend books, or to offer freebies, to give people stuff to do while they're off. I don't know how effective posting in them was, but I got a least a few people messaging me!
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User #8176682 - 15 Mar 20 21:54
Well it sounds like you are getting a second surge maybe you can also tell them about TLS you might get more people to become patreons.
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User #4787752 - 15 Mar 20 22:16
So what you're saying is...I should cough on as many people as possible and keep this virus going for the book!
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sierralee - 15 Mar 20 22:50
I'm not sure if there's a gaming equivalent, but I can hope. >So what you're saying is...I should cough on as many people as possible and keep this virus going for the book! That is absolutely the main thing you should take away from my post.
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User #6214130 - 16 Mar 20 00:19
I just know that the bastards at the book publishing companies started this pandemic to increase their sales. Truly the most evil business in the world.
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User #8176682 - 15 Mar 20 21:04
"Beware the Ides of March" Couldn't resist saying that seeing how today is March 15th.
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User #8176682 - 17 Mar 20 20:57
I noticed a massive inconsistency. When finding the shard in the deep wilds shrine robin says the shard is big enough to divide into a dozen pieces. Why is it then for 49.4 we only get half as many shards?
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User #2540339 - 17 Mar 20 22:40
Most of it is used to forge Wendis's new body.
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User #5341776 - 16 Mar 20 04:17
Hey, SL, Lore questions on Erosian bunny costumes and the start of the reign of Estaven. Simon IDed them as "a traditional Erosian garment" in Stineford in Ch1, but the bunny costume member of Estaven's harem contradicts this statement, and implies it was invented by Estaven. OK, now Simon's travels in Thenours and then the Renthnor Wilds must have been after Wendis died in 1128 but prior to his adopting Robin, which I place between somewhere 1140 and 1145 when Robin was aged 6-11. Now Dari's dialogue in the hole suggests her parents booked it out of rot13istan in favor of Ardford out of fear of Estaven when she was old enough to understand what was happening, but before she was old enough to take care of herself. Something like an age of 8-15, suggesting Estaven took over Erosia between 1140 and 1147. Fheliel also explained that she made "drastic preparations" to repulse an attack from Estaven after watching his rise during the trade negotiations. That implies he appeared during her reign. She was 39 at the Gathering in 1154, so it's pretty unlikely that she was reigning as early as 1142. OK, so everything says that Simon passed through Thenours sometime in the 1130s, but Estaven didn't appear and subjugate Erosia until at least 1140 and probably later than 1145. So if Estaven invented the bunny costume after coming to power, how did Simon come to believe it was a "traditional Erosian costume" when he visited the region a decade earlier?
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User #5341776 - 16 Mar 20 05:42
Real Trivia... It looks like it's possible to make it through Yhilin III and III.5 without ever visiting the square and seeing Yarra's lecture, thus learning that Simon is now named Dargai. This is potentially confusing once folks start using the name in after Eustrin and beyond. (I've been poring over the event code, but I'd need to replay test to confirm.) I think slapping in a Retcon switch turned on by the scene in question and adding it to Janine's section end event will fix the problem if you think it warrants fixing.
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sierralee - 17 Mar 20 04:11
Congrats, this time you've found an inconsistency due to certain plans not being nailed down at the beginning of the game. The second issue: retconning a switch might be slightly technically better, but since I don't have time to verify it, I think I won't to avoid potential bugs.
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User #5341776 - 17 Mar 20 04:15
Both entirely fair. I think I'm done annoying you until April, so take care and don't be a Yarra when it comes to disease transmission precautions. :p
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User #664110 - 18 Mar 20 02:07
Why are you calling Yarra a plague vector? :/
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User #5341776 - 18 Mar 20 02:10
I'm just saying that serial unprotected sex with many partners might not be the most ideal social distancing practice.
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sierralee - 18 Mar 20 02:52
You're RUINING my pandemic response plans.
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User #664110 - 16 Mar 20 01:33
Surprised you didn't mention that book 1 of NGM is temporarily free. I was able to get at least one person into it that way. This Coran map is new to me, so I'm glad you linked it. Finally, I didn't get an email about this Patreon post.
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sierralee - 16 Mar 20 01:44
Oh, I... forgot about that sale. Too much promotion. >Finally, I didn't get an email about this Patreon post. Patreon why. =/
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User #2540339 - 15 Mar 20 23:01
That Coran map is much better than the previous version I saw. It's useful in a different way from a modern topological map - it'd be crap for navigation, but it's a lot more interesting from a cultural and aesthetic perspective. I particularly like the way it's as if the Coran compass has only three points - "Who gives a shit about north? Nothing but grass and savages that way..."
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sierralee - 16 Mar 20 01:41
Yeah, I commissioned a different version based on the feedback of you and others. I had fun with the idea of maps reflecting cultures.
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User #4787752 - 19 Mar 20 18:31
When visiting the Elven meeting point during the Erosian war, the "Sickle" will no longer be dug up. Which is fine, it's been years someone ought to have filled it. But when we visit it again in the most recent world exploring it is dug up again, making the entire game literally unplayable. 0/10 IGN.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 21:46
Haha, will fix.
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User #3076718 - 16 Mar 20 01:23
The Kindle Box set of NGM was only 2.99, was slightly irritated as I'd bought book 1 and 2, but book 3 wasn't available that I saw except in the box set. So I bought it and then I see book 3. I may or may not pick it up so I've got the individual books as well as the box set, but I certainly won't be returning any of them, as I enjoyed them too much. I do wish there had been a resolution about Danniah and Gharavi's relationship with Bloodwraith.
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sierralee - 16 Mar 20 01:43
I meant the boxset to be the clearly superior option, now that it's out. Up to you which ones you get, but you've already supported me a great deal. ^-^ >I do wish there had been a resolution about Danniah and Gharavi's relationship with Bloodwraith. Yeah, this is a bit of a cop-out on my part. But since I was ending it as a trilogy, I decided to let the different factions in the audience just believe what they want.
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User #664110 - 16 Mar 20 04:52
At least this way you get the extra chapter.
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User #3076718 - 17 Mar 20 07:11
True, and I did enjoy Izzy's story.
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User #211417 - 18 Mar 20 17:37
A couple suggestions for potential small improvements in TLS, textual or other : (1) At the Ardford summit, when Simon is discussing the concept of an alliance vs the Doomed King plan, he says the following: https://imgur.com/9MjVXs2 The sentence "It would have advantages, but.." is momentarily confusing, because the pronoun is somewhat unclear (Simon might be referring to the Doomed King plan, rather than the alliance). I think it would be better if this sentence was saying "The alliance would have advantages, but..." or "An alliance would have advantages, but...") (2) How about that when making the "True Princess Armor" for Nalili, if we still have the previous "Princess Armor", the Princess Armor itself should be used/removed as material and there shouldn't be a 5000 Sx monetary cost? (3) I've only played around with editing switches in regards to this, not actually replayed this part -- but in the last update (when we finally get to meet them) are there only two sets of flavour texts for the Succubi Knights (corresponding to a favourable vs a non-favourable result in Gawnfall), and thus there's no distinction (not even in flavour, let alone in costs) between best & 2nd best result, and similarly no distinction between worst & 2nd worst result? The last of these (a distinction between the Church actively rejecting the Succubi Knights, and merely not supporting them) I had thought would be more crucial, and that a complete rejection might prevent them from being formed at all... (4) Lastly for now, and this will probably be a bit more controversial suggestion, but here is what Simon currently says after Robin reveals her attraction: https://imgur.com/3QJiqMr Instead of "I don't respect you any less, Robin." could this sentence be made into "You haven't lost any of my respect, Robin." ? The reason I'm asking this may sound a bit strange, but... Robin at this point is afraid of losing Simon's respect, and Simon knows this and he's spent some minutes listening in silence thinking about how to respond, so I feel that he shouldn't begin a sentence with the words "I don't respect you" even if they are to be immediately followed by "any less". Because making Robin afraid for even a fraction of a second is not what he would want. Anyway, I had felt how Simon is constructing that sentence currently was a bit careless, exactly because it depends solely on the last word to make the sentence comforting/supportive. (Ofcourse, in real life, tone would also convey the meaning, so eh... I can see that it's not that important a suggestion)
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 02:31
Thanks for your attention to detail! 1) Sure, that's clearer. 2) Not unreasonable, but it would retroactively punish all current saves. 3) I don't necessarily include dialogue for all the subtle gradations of a decision. That said, I meant the dividing line to be between Gawnfall accepting or rejecting them. It is possible that I misinterpreted my own switches, but you'd need to be more specific about which ones you mean. 4) In real life his expression and tone would make it clear, but I see your point about it being in pure text. I'll change it, and I might as well make some faceset changes, since Simon has better faces than when that scene was written.
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User #211417 - 19 Mar 20 03:53
In regards to (2), if you want an idea to not penalize old saves, perhaps if a player has both the Princess Armor & the True Princess Armor (making the former obsolete), perhaps the Succubi Armorer buys the old Princess Armor from Nalili for 5000 Sx (as opposed to the 2500 Sx you can get from selling anywhere else). You could even make the sale happen automatically off-screen (e.g. when talking to Nalili she mentions that now she has her new armor, she gave her old one to the Armorer and the armorer reimbursed her costs) Just brainstorming here, as always feel free to ignore me. :-) In regards to (3)... I meant that in Gawnfall there seem to be the following 4 gradations on the issue of the Succubi knights, from best to worst: (a) "The church actually agreed to assist in their creation - more than just nominally. Yelarel is quite pleased." Switches [SUCKNI: Accepted] and also [SUCKNI: Bonus] ) (b) "The church actually agreed to assist in their creation. Yelarel is pleased." (Switch [SUCKNI: Accepted]) (c) "Reactions were mixed but they didn't reject it outright, so she's going forward on her own" (no switches) (d) "Unfortunately, her proposal was rejected. She's going to keep working at it on her own, but..." (Switch [SUCKNI: Rejected]) --- it surprised me a bit that good results (a) and (b) don't seem to currently have much difference (besides the additional Religion stat bonus we got at the Council), and similarly with the 'rejection' result not having much difference with the seemingly more neutral 'Reactions were mixed but they didn't reject it outright' result... But I see that even with the worst result Yelarel says she'll keep working on the knights, so it's probably not as important a distinction as I had remembered/misremembered.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 21:45
It will all add up to something in the end, but I made most of the flavor text around a binary accepted/didn't divide.
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User #6214130 - 16 Mar 20 00:23
A general question to any of the patrons who've read multiple of Sierra's books: I've just finished the Wheel of Time, (after several years) and yet the Corona pandemic has left me with a lot of spare time. So assuming my tastes lie somewhere similar to the tone and style of TLS (NSFW by no means necessary), which of her titles would you recommend reading?
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User #10136374 - 16 Mar 20 01:07
The Brightest Shadow is my favorite of them but your tastes might not match mine so I'll say a little more. New Game Minus: The big thing to know about this one is that it's LitRPG. That means that gameplay elements like levels and stats are literalized in the text (and in this case lampooned a bit). To me this one takes a while to get going but eventually a fun party comes together. This one has elements satirizing sexual fantasy somewhat similar to TLS. Street Cultivation: The most straightforward and fast-paced of the three. Rick is a fairly normal/relatable guy in a world where magic is fully controlled by capitalism and he fights people to support his sick sister. The Brightest Shadow: The most epic fantasy of the three. Some people have complained about it being slow but personally I was fascinated by the worldbuilding and character development all the way through. It's not TOO similar to WOT (having a wuxia element) but it's the most similar in terms of being a multi-POV book with a huge scope.
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User #4787752 - 16 Mar 20 02:35
LOLtohru did a pretty fantastic job with to the point descriptions, but just one thing I wanted to add on New Game Minus being a "LitRpg" It IS a "LitRpg" not a facade "Litrpg" that just throws words like "XP" and "Lag "and "Boss fight" around as buzz words (lookin at you SAO) But the book reflects that the author has actually played a video game in her day and the world reflects it. While keeping up an entertaining story, the 'rules of the game' are clearly defined and are not sacrificed for the sake of the narrative. And it FEELS like it's set in a real game I'd love to play. I recommend buy brightest shadow to help with the first week sales figures for SL but otherwise NGM might be a good place to start as a fun easy going fantasy to enjoy with the dark times of the "Corona Plague" outside our doors.
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User #6214130 - 16 Mar 20 21:52
Alright, thanks for the input guys! After fighting my way through WoT I think I'm ready for something shorter and fast-paced so I think i'll give Street Cultivation a go. Might buy Brightest Shadow and save it for later. Thanks!
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User #9829041 - 22 Mar 20 16:08
Replaying the game, some thoughts: Maybe some Chapter 1 investment could be removed from the Ledger, especially the one that are definitely obsolete by this point, like the Anti-corruption campaign, the Yhilin Bank (not the core lender but the poor guy we put out of his misery back in Chapter 3) or the various mercenaries? No Sublime Dildo or Sublime Buttplug? SP preservation seems to have been completely abandoned as a mechanism (maybe on purpose, for balance reasons?) And finally... Uyae appears to be suffering from some sort of Aquaman syndrome: She's only ever plot-relevant when the plot is about Zirantia. Sure, not every companion needs to be equally important, but still, Dari has her side gig as an investigator in top of being a (former) unwoman, Fuani is chief of staff, while Uyae basically hangs out almost silently until someone mentions Zirantia. Her other specifics, like for example her particular fighting style, strangely barely get a mention.
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User #9829041 - 22 Mar 20 16:11
Also, no Divine Claw Charm 2 with full resistance to most status effects?
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sierralee - 22 Mar 20 19:57
Removing old investments has been raised before, but I also like the idea of the Ledger clearly showing your past choices. I wish I had the capability of allowing only partial SP preservation, but with the engine it's hardcoded all or nothing. Essentially, SP preservation is one of the more overpowered elements left in the game. I intentionally decided that players would have to sacrifice stats to have it in most cases. On Uyae... that's fair. Zirantia is her main cause, but I should try to give her some other content. An upgraded Divine Claw Charm is planned for other circumstances.
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User #211417 - 21 Mar 20 16:03
Minor bug report. I tested visitiing Ryoken with Erosia stats set to 0 (https://imgur.com/qtMYHRZ) and Erosia stats set to 20 (https://imgur.com/zj4gRiB) In both cases, the pieces of the broken 'arch' that are missing (so five squares when the stat is 0 and three squares when the stat is 20), actually block the Simon sprite from moving through them. (so in both of the screenshots I can't move forward from where Simon is currently, and in the first screenshot I can't move left/right either)
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sierralee - 21 Mar 20 18:16
Fixed, thanks!
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User #8176682 - 15 Mar 20 22:02
So Sierra I know it's not ready now but will we see TLS 50.0 before April?
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sierralee - 15 Mar 20 22:50
Before the end of the month? It's only been a week since the public release, so not a chance.
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User #4082870 - 16 Mar 20 16:06
Dude, don't be so impatient. This game has a one-woman dev team who's always got like 3 additional projects on her plate. Updates take time, but they're always worth it.
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User #8176682 - 16 Mar 20 19:34
I'm not complaining, I'm just asking. Of course the updates are worth it.
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User #8982956 - 15 Mar 20 22:24
Since you brought up New Game Minus, do you plan to have audiobooks made for the rest of the series? I rather enjoyed the one for Changing Faces.
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sierralee - 15 Mar 20 22:51
The original narrator bailed on me and it really set me back. It would be nice to do in theory, but it's a lot of extra work.
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User #8982956 - 15 Mar 20 23:31
Oh, that sucks, I'm sorry to hear that. I hope you find another narrator and the time / energy / budget to keep it going some day.
March 8 Update: TBS Release
March 8 Update: TBS Releasemore_vert
2020-03-08T21:58:19+00:00
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March 8 Update: TBS Release 2020-03-08T21:58:19+00:00close

Unusual post this week! I hope I can ask your attention for something a little outside the ordinary.

Normally I try not to ask you guys for much extra, because your support already forms the bedrock of my career. I'm grateful to all of you who go the extra mile writing reviews or recommending my work, but just the fact that you're playing means a lot to me. Requesting more on top of that doesn't usually feel right.

I'm going to ask this time, however. Please consider taking a look at my newest venture: an epic fantasy series titled The Brightest Shadow. If you can afford the book (it's $2.99 for over a thousand pages), it would mean a lot to me if you grabbed a copy. If you think it's worth a review on Amazon or Goodreads, that would be fantastic. Amazon actually shows international reviews now, so your country is no longer as important a factor.

I expected TBS to have as slow a start as TLS, but it's actually done much better than I expected over the first few days. I'm fighting to stay at the top of lists, however, so your help would be much appreciated. This is something I've poured an immense amount of love into. The first book is obviously just one book, but as a whole the story is one of the few I'd say will equal to TLS in size and complexity.

I'm in a position where I can do pure passion projects, but recently I've been reminded how important it is to find the right audience. I've immensely enjoyed having all of you interested in my work on TLS, and I'm hoping TBS can also finds its audience.

Anyway, the synopsis and other stuff are at the main link:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0856ZMG9Z/

If you want to support me for free, you could also check out these lore posts I've made on a couple of subreddits in the hope of getting a bit more attention:

https://old.reddit.com/r/worldbuilding/comments/ffjnub/the_mansthein_creating_a_diverse_nonhuman_species/

https://old.reddit.com/r/ProgressionFantasy/comments/ff1i15/the_progression_treadmill_thoughts_on_a_potential/

Okay, that's enough begging. As always, I'm very grateful for everyone supporting me and I'm eagerly anticipating moving forward with TLS and everything else!


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Comments (44)
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User #1001252 - 11 Mar 20 00:05
Alright, got the book. I will add it to my ever increasing list of books I want to read.
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sierralee - 11 Mar 20 00:14
Thank you! I hope you enjoy the book when you have time, but I really appreciate your support meanwhile. ^-^
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User #5097687 - 17 Mar 20 06:09
Oh wow, thanks Sierra! :o I didn't mean to pressure you into anything, just expressed my disappointment, sorry. Dark Art's suggestion isn't bad at all either. But I guess now the ball is rolling, and if Amazon approves, I'll definitely buy it there of course. Again, sorry for causing you trouble, and I really appreciate your effort! :) EDIT: And once again I fail to add to the existing comment chain. Sorry. ^^
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sierralee - 17 Mar 20 18:31
The paperback is approved, though right now it can only be accessed via this direct link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B085RPXGRG Sorry about the price, and the fact that I can't actually check this one myself.
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User #5097687 - 18 Mar 20 06:31
Thanks a bunch! :D Bought two, the third will have to wait a bit due to the price. You've made me very happy! <3
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sierralee - 18 Mar 20 13:02
I'm glad to hear it. ^-^ Thank you for the support!
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User #3076718 - 11 Mar 20 02:53
Read it, loved it, reviewed it. Sadly I messed up on the header of the review and my amazon account refuses to acknowledge that I have any reviews at all, so I can't edit it. :( Anyway, I went and have got and finished Changing Faces, and will probably tear through Raising Allies tomorrow.
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sierralee - 11 Mar 20 02:58
Thanks! I'm most happy that you enjoyed the book, of course, but I hope the review situation gets worked out, because the book is in need of them...
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User #3076718 - 11 Mar 20 06:13
Oh it's just going to make me look bad, instead of Brilliant Story, it reads Brilliant Stary, because I was doing the review on my phone instead of my pc.
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User #402210 - 9 Mar 20 13:24
what's the book about? and is it NSFW?
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 13:38
The description at my book link is the best long description, but a shorter one: it's a wuxia-based epic fantasy novel. It's not safe for kids, but not NSFW.
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User #664110 - 9 Mar 20 23:03
Every time I read something like this, I wonder if my parents were just unusually permissive about letting me grab what I wanted at the library. To be sure, there are some dark and existential elements in TBS, but better to mentally grapple with these things first in the safe space of fiction than in reality, no?
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User #3076718 - 10 Mar 20 00:04
I cut a deal with my parents, (okay Mom, Dad was a Truck Driver at the time), to let me watch Robotech, and Dark Shadows as soon as I got home from school before I did chores / homework. And yeah as far as reading goes, I was reading well above my age level too.
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User #402210 - 13 Mar 20 16:25
i was teh exact opposite. but that's because of my anxiety. i was reading Bamse the world strongest bear, while my big brother was reading conan the barbarian. XP
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User #8225764 - 11 Mar 20 19:58
Just picked it up the other day so i'm going to try to make some time to read through it. I've read a few of your other books so i'm excited to see what this one has in store.
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sierralee - 11 Mar 20 20:16
Thanks for your support! This one is more epic fantasy than my previous books, but I hope you enjoy it!
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User #664110 - 9 Mar 20 23:09
>I expected TBS to have as slow a start as TLS, but it's actually done much better than I expected over the first few days. This makes me a bit curious about the industry - do books become "sleeper hits" or "cult classics" the way movies or games sometimes do, such that it would be realistic to expect TBS to slowly gain notice and profitability over months or years?
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 23:35
More so than most other industries, I believe. The commercial success of movies is decided in a few opening weekends and the first month of game sales dwarfs later years, but publishing works much slower. I've heard that some epic fantasy publishers only start judging overall profitability a year after release (some subgenres, like YA, move faster). There's also a strong series effect. Most of the series that consistently hit the NYT bestseller list didn't do so at first, only after several books came out. Books are also more prone to late surges, such as the Witcher suddenly becoming one of the bestselling series due to the adapation, decades after publication. That said, the first month is the only period of time in which I get additional promotion from Amazon. Organizations like audiobook publishers will use that to judge offers, it will establish the early reviews, and it is often a test of viability. TBS made a pretty good splash over the first weekend, but right now it doesn't look like it will keep selling based on nothing but the algorithm the way Street Cultivation did.
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User #5029794 - 9 Mar 20 23:47
I don't know how relevant this is, but Brandon Sanderson once wrote a blog post about his first book: Elantris. It sold 400 copies that first week. Being a new author he didn't know if that was good or not but the publisher wasn't upset so he keyed off of his reaction. And according to his blog post, Elantris went on to sell an average of 400 books every week. For years. (May still be, for all I know). At the time he'd written the blog post I think he mentioned it had outsold literally everything else he had ever written, quantity wise. Point being: books sell weird. Maybe it isn't flashy, but a steady stream can be just as valuable. Here's hoping the same success comes to TBS.
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User #3076718 - 10 Mar 20 00:06
I need to read Elantris, just keep putting it off. I loved the first 3 books in the MIstborn series, but I've tried the 2nd Trilogy 3 times, and give up halfway through the first book. But I've read all the Wheel series, and have his 3 books from the Path of Kings so I know I like his writing style.
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sierralee - 10 Mar 20 00:54
Yeah, Sanderson went from just barely getting into the publishing industry to becoming one of the bestselling authors of the last decade. So long as the TBS launch doesn't become a flash in the pan (the sad fate of most books) that's sufficient. Something that can be built on, anyway.
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User #6230075 - 18 Mar 20 21:09
Gotta say I'm only about 30% through the book right now but its pretty good. I noticed a few errors in punctuation but nothing major. I just want to know how the hell you found time to do this and work on your other stuff.
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sierralee - 19 Mar 20 01:53
Glad you're enjoying it! If you ever notice a typo or other error, feel free to mention it. They may be intentional, but they could also be errors I very much want to fix! Creating things is really my passion. When I'm feeling tired from one project, I often work on another, or I fiddle with side projects in my spare time. ^-^ I hope this can be one of my core long term projects, though.
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User #3076718 - 8 Mar 20 22:56
Got it, will leave a review once I've gotten into it.
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 00:59
Thank you very much!
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User #3076718 - 9 Mar 20 06:12
I think I remember you talking about this before, but is there a thorough explanation of sein later on in the book? I just got done reading the Tani's version of tag with the Ghakin the Catai.
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User #3181734 - 11 Mar 20 18:44
Just bought a copy! I meant to read it back when you released it for $10 patrons a while ago, but life has been super busy. However, as a Washingtonian I now have a bunch of free time for *some* reason (cough cough). Will leave a review when I finish it.
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sierralee - 11 Mar 20 18:50
Haha, I hope it keeps you safe inside! Your support is very much appreciated. ^-^
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User #5097687 - 16 Mar 20 17:41
Oh, okay. Not sure anymore, but I'd thought you'd said there would definitely be a print version. ;( I was really hyped for the story, not sure though if I'll put up with reading something of that length on the screen though.
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sierralee - 16 Mar 20 20:50
I did what I could for 90 minutes, but Amazon is being difficult. It turns out there's a maximum page number for their paperbacks but that isn't made at all clear by their error messages. I'm sorry, man, I really tried. The best I could do is the paperback with oddly small text, but I'm afraid that would be a bad experience.
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sierralee - 16 Mar 20 21:25
I put more effort in and managed to get a version approved. The font shouldn't be too small and it's within all limitations, assuming it gets through the approval in 12-72 hours. If anyone gets this version, please buy from Amazon instead of any subsidiaries or I get next to nothing.
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User #14120479 - 17 Mar 20 01:23
Just a thought - you can print and bind a book yourself for rather a modest price. I did that for a few very hard to find titles and they all costed me around 30 bucks. Just look around your town for print shops and if their pricing is anything like we have here (around 3 cents a page or 5 cents for double-sided page) you should not have a problem getting it done while you wait.
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User #4787752 - 8 Mar 20 23:07
I'll pray for your success in this with all my heart! And would you be comfortable in me mentioning this book to places like f95 zone? It's a pirating site (though don't worry it's not me giving the links) but despite that some of them do seem like good people interested in your works. They might not be able to afford monthly patron but if left a link they might be likely to give a book a try. Though I understand if you want to say no to keep your NSFW and SFW separated.
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User #3076718 - 8 Mar 20 23:10
LOL there is a length TLS thread there too.
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 00:59
Not sure what to say. Well, I'm glad for your support, but about the rest. On one hand, part of me wants to say that this is the time to use every possible angle. On the other hand, F95 is one of the few places I stopped monitoring because it was overall such a creative drain. I worry it might have a larger number of malicious actors who might try to intentionally use that information against me.
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User #4787752 - 9 Mar 20 02:36
No worries then, I won't mention it! Glad I asked, and thanks for the direct answer.
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User #10136374 - 8 Mar 20 22:57
Congrats Sierra! I tried to do my part by posting a review earlier: https://www.reddit.com/r/Fantasy/comments/fff1hp/spoilerfree_review_the_brightest_shadow_isnt/ It didn't get much attention. T_T Please upvote if you think it's any good!
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 00:59
I really appreciate it. ^-^
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User #5097687 - 15 Mar 20 08:24
There, bought one though I'll never read it in that format. When will the print version be available?
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sierralee - 15 Mar 20 16:01
Your support is very much appreciated! I'm not sure about a print version, to be honest. A book this long would be prohibitively expensive by Amazon's POD option.
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User #664110 - 10 Mar 20 00:24
A simple Reddit search for "The Brightest Shadow" (with quotes) returns mostly other threads discussing or reviewing the book; upvoting or engaging with these might also be a way to support?
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sierralee - 10 Mar 20 00:55
It certainly wouldn't hurt!
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User #171683 - 9 Mar 20 04:44
Just bought the book. Look forward to reading it.
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sierralee - 9 Mar 20 13:37
Thanks, hope you enjoy!
TLS 0.49.4 Public Release 2020-03-06T23:28:19+00:00

Notes and links on the blog:

https://the-last-sovereign.blogspot.com/2020/03/tls-0494.html


I post these because some people use them for notifications, but I don't have a lot to say. I've been pretty busy stretched between polishing this up and some other fun stuff, which I will be talking about more on Sunday.

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Comments (50)
user avatar
User #8176270 - 8 Mar 20 11:13
Question, in the wiki there are several mentions of a so called "liquid sex" item in regards to custom equipment. Can someone enlighten me how/when to get it?
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User #6214130 - 8 Mar 20 11:36
There is currently only one of these in the game, and it's located in the Incubus King ruins in New Givini. So you better have some money left over :)
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User #8176270 - 8 Mar 20 11:44
Not right now, but the next round of investment returns should fix that (hopefully, lel). Thanks!
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User #6214130 - 8 Mar 20 13:59
Just a small FYI, but I'm fairly certain the Incubus King ruins aren't worth it, if you plan on investing in chapter 5, since Sierra has mentioned that the Incubus Pin, the primary reason for opening the ruins, is gone by the time that chapter 5 begins. Opening the ruins may be cheaper, but there is far less reason to throw millions of pron at it.
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User #8176270 - 8 Mar 20 14:09
EDIT: Found a way myself.
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User #7631155 - 8 Mar 20 21:02
I have added the Liquid Sex to the list of Rewards from Incubus KIng Ruins in New Givini. Sorry for the oversight.
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User #8176270 - 9 Mar 20 17:38
Thanks lostone. :) Don't worry, i'm just pretty obsessed about not missing anything.
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User #126622 - 9 Apr 20 04:01
I haven't played in a few months and lost my save file, and when I decided to start a new game my character always goes up, I can move side to side as he goes up but eventually gets stuck. I can't figure out how to fix this, any tips or is it a rare bug?
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sierralee - 9 Apr 20 13:03
I can't diagnose your particular situation, but in the past this has been a keyboard issue. For whatever reason, the "up" command isn't getting canceled.
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User #4089879 - 7 Mar 20 01:17
Thanks!
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User #376218 - 11 Mar 20 03:41
I played 0.49.1. With 0.49.4, is it worth restarting from the end of 0.48.x, or can I load my latest save and pick up everything that has been added/fixed in 0.49.2-4?
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User #2540339 - 11 Mar 20 18:49
The changelog says that a lot of updates were made to the chapter 5 iteration event in 0.49.2, so your variables might be out of sync in the 0.49.1 save. It's probably safest to replay from your 0.48.x save.
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User #664110 - 7 Mar 20 03:15
Hey Sierra, would you mind at least confirming or denying that the weird text spewed by the new wandering Chosen has a hidden meaning? I'm pretty sure some wiki people are going to spend time trying to decode it if it's not confirmed meaningless.
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User #5341776 - 7 Mar 20 03:39
I made it very clear that I had given up!
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User #664110 - 7 Mar 20 03:44
"I am the wiki!" -Duke Leto "Palpatine" VII
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User #5341776 - 7 Mar 20 04:13
So, it's treason then?
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 04:19
General Kenobi! ...advises that it's probably not worth spending time decoding the Chosen's dialogue.
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User #4787752 - 7 Mar 20 14:12
I translated the lines from the last chosen! When he say AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I think it means AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 14:37
Essential, insightful analysis!
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User #7631155 - 7 Mar 20 21:00
You guys are amazing....
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User #2991461 - 21 Mar 20 03:06
Potential bug regarding the investment screen. I currently have more Yhilin investments than will show in a single pane, and the arrow keys don't let me scroll through them. Since the pagination there was recent (and a significant improvement), I suspect that is the issue. https://drive.google.com/open?id=11DUS1zSTnwe2r1iHID-poVMqiRglE-M8 Thank you!
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User #2540339 - 7 Mar 20 18:26
Found a few more minor text issues in 0.49.4. I still have no idea how I keep missing these...! millenia -> millennia: https://www.dropbox.com/s/43oxy40e9kurqdh/Screenshot%202020-03-07%2016.46.10.png?dl=0 double space in "So, what": https://www.dropbox.com/s/kwbdtfmgamd73zx/Screenshot%202020-03-07%2015.32.31.png?dl=0 This looks like it should have been updated post-Gawnfall? https://www.dropbox.com/s/wmlrk1tkuoi4647/Screenshot%202020-03-07%2015.04.38.png?dl=0
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 23:21
Thanks for the reports! >Found a few more minor text issues in 0.49.4. I still have no idea how I keep missing these...! Believe me, I know...
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User #7631155 - 8 Mar 20 21:05
I think that it should be her cloak: https://imgur.com/a/LbHCVr7
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User #414928 - 4 Apr 20 01:48
Dunno if this thread is still being watched, but what the hey.. the completionist in me cries out: will it eventually still be possible to complete the palace staff quest if you chose a .. more unified outcome at a certain synod?
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sierralee - 4 Apr 20 16:43
You'll be able to complete the quest, but not necessarily recruit all possible staff.
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User #414928 - 6 Apr 20 22:54
Aw, too bad! Totally separate issue.. Some of the regular speech pics of Carina cross the uncanny valley just a bit for me. Something about her face shape and her lips being too far from her nose. Most of her pics have basically two parallel lines for the mouth, and it gives her lips. But one of them has just a tiny mouth line which is placed.. somehow.. wrongly. I notice it every time to the point where I cover the portrait with my hand to read the text next to it. No other problems with any other character portraits.
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User #8176270 - 7 Mar 20 01:38
Hi Sierra, currently playing the release and noticed a few typos and bugs so far. Chances are you already got notified of them, but nevertheless i decided to write them down here and edit the post as i progress. Current (mostly minor) issues i found: EDIT: Alright, everything turned out to be nothing in the end so far. I'll keep playing and watching out ofc. EDIT2: Typo: Sexscene after Stineford, "In all busyness of the day"
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User #4787752 - 7 Mar 20 02:28
I think the music end is intentional...the sudden stop is rather fitting to the 'mood'
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User #664110 - 7 Mar 20 02:35
"mislike" is a real word which fits in context. (It means about the same as "dislike" though.)
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 02:58
WaxerRed and Decanter are correct, but I appreciate you reporting any bugs you notice!
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User #8176270 - 7 Mar 20 03:14
@Decanter Well blow me down, thought the same thing at first but when i looked it up in a dictionary i couldn't find it anywhere. Wasn't a complete one apparently.
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 04:18
It's a more archaic word. I wouldn't use it except in certain fantasy contexts.
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User #8176270 - 7 Mar 20 12:14
I see, thanks for the explanation, helps me as a non native.
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User #546575 - 7 Mar 20 14:40
What is the secret to getting the game to full screen? (Is it a setting in "RPGvxAce_RTP" I need to adjust?) Thanks
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User #2540339 - 7 Mar 20 18:19
Press F5 to go full screen, or F6 to change the size in windowed mode. There's a readme file in the game folder with other info about controls.
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User #376218 - 11 Mar 20 03:35
Wait...wut? We can change the window size? I've been playing since v0.10ish and I never knew that. My eyes thank you.
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User #7456747 - 9 Apr 20 19:54
I haven't played since the release of v0.30.1 I moved my save file over to the latest. I'm at the beginning of ch4 and can't use the teleporter. I'm not sure if this is a bug.
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sierralee - 9 Apr 20 22:40
To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure either. Have you checked your quest log to see if you need to talk to anyone or complete any other objectives first?
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User #435478 - 8 Mar 20 06:39
Gahhhh, I miss being able to play every update and check every nook and cranny for bugs. I thought when I left the military I was going to retire... and then the job offer came in that I couldn't refuse lol. Now I'm working long shifts that leave me playing this only once every three or more updates - which in one way is great, I get all the content all at once, but in another is terrible! I hate falling behind. Whelp, time to check out the update after work tonight.
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sierralee - 8 Mar 20 22:02
I hope the job is a fun one, at least! Meanwhile, there will always be more TLS waiting for you. ^-^
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User #8176682 - 8 Mar 20 21:32
I found a new typo in Zirantia. To the right of Yuanon in the plaza are two merchants next to each other. The one with blonde hair says "Say sell foreigners to, but not have fight things." I can accept that his clentian isn't great that he struggles with dialogue, but "fight" should be "right"
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sierralee - 8 Mar 20 22:03
That is actually intentional: he means "things used for fighting".
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User #4092580 - 7 Mar 20 18:30
i note only now, ardford is still closed if you don't open it during the synod, i have the impression to the city will be open at the start of chapter 5 for everyone (based heavly on stenai embassy chain flow).
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sierralee - 7 Mar 20 23:21
I wasn't entirely sure about that. I kind of like the idea of the Gawnfall decision still having consequences, but at the same time I'm assuming most players have it unlocked.
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User #211417 - 8 Mar 20 10:01
I'm sure some people will be deliberately attempting "worst possible" playthroughs where we fail as badly as possible at everything and still succeed in the end. You could make it so that if Ardford is still locked by Chapter 5, then there's an option where Megail offers you a chance to reopen it for e.g. 250.000 ProN or 500.000 ProN or something (some officials need be bribed, etc), similar you made it so we can access the Potion Hermit for the tune of 100.000 ProN.
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User #4092580 - 8 Mar 20 15:53
i can agree with the sentiment, but i was thinking on ardford opening like a "obtain the access early". not "be locked out until the end of the game.
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User #7631155 - 8 Mar 20 21:06
I suppose that is reasonable that Ardford will be opened at some point but IMHO is fine that is closed for now.
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sierralee - 8 Mar 20 22:02
I think letting the player in for a small payment is a reasonable compromise. I'll add that along with a secondary Fheliel chance in the next version.
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User #664110 - 9 Mar 20 00:00
Simon does explicitly say something like "Let's go to the Ardford embassies" after setting up the Stenai embassy there, which is weird if we don't have access. The current flow requires you to actually go have that conversation with Tyna there to get credit for the accomplishment, which may not make the most sense...
March 1 Update 2020-03-01T17:34:51+00:00

As we enter March, I feel like 2020 has gotten off to a good start. I had to push a little too hard, but I feel positive about what I did in updates 48 and 49, so I'm glad that they've been well-received. The public release of TLS 0.49.x will still be next weekend, but overall we enter into a period with a little more uncertainty.

Update 0.50.0 could actually be several different things. The next plot segment will be a more intense conflict bringing together some characters in hopefully surprising ways and setting off several updates of linear content. However, I also don't want to leave Eustrin sitting as it currently is for too long, so the update resolving it is also on my mind. Finally, we're getting closer to the time when we can have the update adding the art into the game, with the corresponding publicity push.

The other major thing happening is that The Brightest Shadow will finally be releasing next weekend. I can tell that I'm too emotionally invested in this, but in this case mental discipline doesn't have much effect. I'll post more about that at the time and generally cross my fingers. >_<

Anyway, as thanks to all my $1 patrons, I've made the newest update available to all of you here. Thanks for your support!

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Comments (14)
user avatar
User #6214130 - 2 Mar 20 15:45
The Eustrin-Aram conflict will be an event that can be triggered at any point in chapter 5, as long as you qualify with the required stats, right Sierra? If that is the case I would recommend tying up loose ends in Eustrin first, as a way of making that game development proceeds chronologically, and that players won't retroactively have to redo story sections for fear of missing out on bonuses for something that they already qualified for. But that's just my opinion, Sierra. As the developer I'm sure you know what will be best for the game. :) And while the sentiment can get lost in the bugreports and balancing requests, I do think that chapter 5 is off to a great start so thank you for caring about your work. It seems so many game developers do not these days.
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sierralee - 2 Mar 20 19:30
Yeah, that's how the event will be triggered. I'm very conscious of the potential of non-linear segments to require replaying, but I also try to overall prioritize total TLS development. Depending on how things fall out, finishing other content might be the best way to keep up momentum. Thank you for the kind words about this chapter! I appreciate them. ^-^
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User #8176682 - 2 Mar 20 19:56
What loose ends are you talking about exactly? Apart from adding neranda into the harem the only thing I can think of is more interactions with Aram, maybe the king and nobles, especially whichever high priestess of Aram we supported. Either way I would honestly expect Aram to be as stupid as mentioned that if Aram went to war against us now that they deserve to be crushed. I wonder if we cant work something like that out and install Farnan on the Aramite throne provided we supported him without blackmail.
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User #6214130 - 2 Mar 20 21:47
When i say "loose ends" i mean in the sense that this is mostly the theoretical end to the Eustrin arc, and will likely resolve most of the issues with Eustrin and Aram, for better or for worse. This is the final chapter afterall, and there are 3 continents full of countries, which are all full of characters that have to move towards some kind of conclussion to their character arcs. Makes sense for some country developments to begin "ending" soon.
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User #664110 - 3 Mar 20 01:49
Whoa, nonlinear plot sections. Change is scary.
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User #5097687 - 5 Mar 20 22:05
The ingame description of Yarra's new synergy skill with Nalili (Lash of Torment) says: 'Draws off other sexual energy for a quick attack.' Sounds weird to me, wouldn't 'Draws off another's' or actually 'Nalili's' be better here? Which in turn brings to mind that it would be cool if Yarra actually would pay the SP from Nalili's pool and not her own, but I assume there are coding limitations to that idea.
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sierralee - 5 Mar 20 22:33
Yeah, I suppose that's a good change. The mechanical change isn't possible, however. The SP system is a lot stiffer than I'd hoped when I found it.
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User #664110 - 2 Mar 20 02:09
I was playing the update and I found Gwyneth Paltrow: https://i.imgur.com/13ifSDn.png Here's hoping this isn't as bad an idea in TLS as it is in real life.
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sierralee - 2 Mar 20 03:18
Succubi are happy to stick all kinds of things in all kinds of places, but they would never make pseudo-scientific health claims.
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User #664110 - 2 Mar 20 04:07
So Nalili's claims about Incubus semen are very reliable and scientific! Time to bottle Simon's "goop" and sell it in the Chalice.
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User #8176682 - 1 Mar 20 19:30
Only one question that as you've said the update for adding artwork is getting closer, can we have a sort of toggle to turn the artwork on/off, meaning being able to choose whether to view it or not?
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User #8176682 - 1 Mar 20 19:32
Comment, I am looking forward to finally resolving the Eustrin situation and putting Aram in its place.
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User #664110 - 1 Mar 20 20:26
Toggle for artwork is confirmed.
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User #8176682 - 1 Mar 20 20:28
That's great to hear Decanter.
TLS 0.49.2 2020-02-28T23:34:59+00:00

UPDATE: I hope the version linked below is very nearly the public release, but I decided to let everyone try it early if they wanted.


The previous thread has over 300 comments, so I thought it might be better to start with a clean slate. While it's possible that I introduced new bugs to this version, overall it should be a substantial step up from the previous one, unlike the interim fixes of 0.49.1.


0.49.3 Link: https://mega.nz/#!2xcxkIgb!OcMV4xQkpei_p1ZlQJDNDXpUriRv8ECxW2CT_ctUpBo


TLS 0.49.3

- This is a noncritical update, mostly final fixes and improvements.

- The skeleton in Aram desert now provokes a new party conversation.

- Notable change: the investment returns at the start of Chapter 4 are now paginated, and possibly altered incorrectly.





Link: https://mega.nz/#!zoEnDIYD!sIZuIiWrNbCgofqAE4zVBTJP_8ZmeQIYgJYYIMpkkYs

RTP: https://mega.nz/#!jsUlRIIL!AArN-2yuSFP5cUpfP5htmsCSBP2aWxTCIPZSHip17FY


TLS 0.49.2

- Zirantian leaders now report on the state of their nation. This can potentially unlock the new Biyue scene.

- The Stineford succubus bar is now available if missed, and can be visited as a new map, but only going through the improved iterate event mentioned below.

- Min now appears in the Givino Vinai Court.

- Antarian now appears in Ardford Cathedral.

- Nabith now has a new conversation when first spoken to in Chapter 5 (with Yhilin Final).

- More variant dialogue has been added, notably in Ardford Business District and Orri's Restaurant.

- The physical condition of Ryoken now varies based on Erosia's country score.

- Retroactive: The Ramasta Unperson HQ now visually improves if Gawnfall helped the Unpeople.

- Lynine and Iris have conversations that increase their RP if you investigate their funded investments.

- Serious improvements have been made to the Chapter 5 iterate event, including more potential RP for Tertia.

- Quest objective bugs fixed (only if you repeat the events).

- The Duelist's Pin can now be enchanted in Ghenalon.

- The costs for a number of investments have decreased, some based on past decisions.

- Sublime equipment is in some cases more expensive, but overall buffed.

- Sublime equipment now has unique icons.

- Assorted minor changes, fixes, and improvements.


Though I couldn't catalog every single change, I tried to list all the major ones for anyone wanting to check them. There are some new maps and conversations in there, plus the scene that was locked previously.

Anyway, we have another week before this one goes public for final polish. I'll probably open it up to $1 patrons later this weekend. You'll be getting a weekly post on Sunday discussing March, which has some fun stuff coming soon!

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Comments (78)
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 11:51
Has anyone yet figured out what it is that wandering chosen says. If indeed there is a hidden message to it.
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User #5341776 - 29 Feb 20 16:37
I took a quick look at the texts from a cryptographic standpoint, and my educated guess is that it's just gibberish. (Or at least, tough enough that it's not worth my trying to break it.) The determinants are that there are too many unique alphanumeric characters for it to be a simple Caesar cipher like Dari's native Rot13, that there also isn't a predominating character corresponding to "e", and that there are too many very long words based on the visible spaces for it to translate into something intelligible.
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User #5341776 - 29 Feb 20 19:39
I was however able to get this completely authentic and totally not unrelated recording of what the gibberish would sound like when read aloud. https://sndup.net/9nf4/TLS+Ch+5+Wandering+Chosen+Recording.wav
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User #6214130 - 29 Feb 20 22:42
Sounds like a particularly talkative smurf getting deepthroated
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User #5341776 - 1 Mar 20 00:02
I believe you mean "facesmurfed". It's actually a semi-regular sound effect clip used in a 1950s BBC radio comedy show called "The Goon Show", I think it's actually just Peter Sellers making odd noises for 24 seconds, but there also some suggestions that it's supposed to be their version of the voice of a "Goon", the occasional cartoon nemeses of Popeye. The episode I grabbed it from "The Great String Robberies" isn't on YouTube, but there's another clip from it that's worth hearing and gives you an idea of the silliness involved. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnmsGhw7c3k
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 23:05
Also another bug, but they are getting fewer and far between in finding! One of our new banners is non-intractable. https://imgur.com/a/x3r2KoW
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 23:34
Sorry, but I'm not completely sure what you mean here. When I check out that banner with one of my saves, it appears to function normally.
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User #4787752 - 1 Mar 20 17:31
Odd, trying to interact with it gives no prompt to me. Maybe it's just something odd going on in my game. Unless there is a third person who can double check?
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sierralee - 1 Mar 20 20:48
Hopefully if there's an issue, someone else will report it.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 22:53
As I have no way to test it, I'm just asking: If Altina didn't come around to absorb the sexual energy left by the Fucklord in Zirantia during the Erosian War, does that unlock another investment in Zirantia during chapter 5 dealing with that energy? Because if not, I think it totally should.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 23:03
...though I guess it's rather safe to assume you included investments for all the problems that were caused in Zirantia during the war, much like in Yhilin after the BOY. Silly me actually, sory for not thinking it through. ^^
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 23:31
Actually, it doesn't. I included that part to give Altina a moment to shine and to give an option if the player had all the other problems dealt with.
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User #5097687 - 1 Mar 20 02:26
Oh. Well, thinking more about it, I guess basing an investment on Altina's presence in the party would be a balance nightmare anyways. ^^
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User #8982956 - 29 Feb 20 02:12
Still going through the update, massive amount of stuff to do! One minor typo found. https://imgur.com/a/FRD9CtV
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 02:22
Fixed, thanks!
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 17:30
Small bug- Hermit will sell you lotus again after restoring wendis.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 17:44
Fixed, thanks!
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User #4082870 - 28 Feb 20 23:52
The imp that offers the Feroholm and Stineford farm investments is gone. Not sure if it's a bug or there's a new condition before he unlocks.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 00:01
Except for changing his prices, I didn't touch him, so I honestly don't know.
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User #4082870 - 29 Feb 20 00:15
Hmm, he's indeed there for other saves so it's probably something from that save having some editing.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 01:18
The one requirement for his presence should be talking to the Feroholm resident in Stineford.
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User #4082870 - 29 Feb 20 02:54
Ah, that was probably it. Otherwise I haven't found any bugs or mistakes going through, my only comment is did you seriously introduce a new bar in this update that doesn't have an Orcent conversation? For shame :p
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:04
What are the differentiations with Biyue's statements of Zirantia's status. After her "wingjob" she tells me "Zirantia is thriving! Thank you so much for all you've done for us!" Is that the top result?
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User #2909283 - 29 Feb 20 02:09
I would assume so, since Biyue joining the group seems unlikely. Not really any more room on the Leader page with Elleani, Neranda, and Esthera waiting in the wings. It surprised me Fheliel beat Elleani to be honest.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:18
And let me guess, the "other" page has four spots left for "Zelica, Mithyn, Ivala" and the mother who I saw on that wiki page might go by the name "Grynyth"
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 02:21
That's her highest comment. I may need to increase the required variables for Zirantia, if many people have it maxed already.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:35
I dont think you need to increase the variables anymore I simply did all the stuff to get max potential with supporting the NUP in chapter 3. The Zirantia petitions in the aftermath of the third arclent war. Choosing to divert supplies to Zirantia in the erosian war. And spending on all the new investments in Zirantia. So I really dont think you need to increase the variables, not unless people are getting that result without doing the aforementioned tasks.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 14:14
And for Erosia talking to the glasses girl about rebuilding. "So overall Erosia is rebuilding quite well!" Is that the top result? I reached Kyangan in chapter 4 with enough pron for all those war investments.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 20:41
Regarding Biyue's evaluation, I think I've laid the same groundwork JJS did, did all 3 new Zirantia investments (there are only the 3 in the palace, right?), and THEN still had to have Min support Zirantian trade to get Biyue's best evaluation. So unless you're planning to implement more ways to boost Zirantia and prolong the whole affair, I guess it's alright as it is. Especially considering that I won't divert supplies to Zirantia in my next Erosian War approach and Zirantia probably is going to get the short end of the stick at one or two other occasions during that war. And talking about Biyue's wingjob scene, it unlocked for me after funding her infrastructure investment and doing nothing else yet. Is it tied to that investment or a certain Zirantia score, because I think the latter would make more sense.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 22:55
Thanks for the feedback regarding Zirantia. Biyue's scene requires both her investment and a certain Zirantia score. I don't know how often the latter will be a relevant barrier, however.
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 13:39
Super minor thing, but the booze seller in Yhiilin Square sells orc potions for 2sx. Everyone else sells them for 500. But it's a great update to the update non the less love Biyue's new scene.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:02
Good catch! Glad you liked the scene. ^-^
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 20:23
Damn, I'd hoped that was intentional. ^^
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 01:59
I did the prerequisite event for the succubi bar in stineford but wasnt able to get in. Am I missing something or did it not work?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 02:20
It's possible that this is bugged since I added it at the last second, but it should have two requirements: 1) Fund the bar during Stineford (not now). 2) Start from a save at the beginning of this update (not from 0.49.1 or earlier). People should now be able to fund the bar if they missed it earlier, but it won't appear until the next cycle.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:43
Getting real tired of having to completely restart another save to unlock a feature that glitches up. It nullifies all the work I've done again and again.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 02:57
If you don't want to replay a section, I recommend not playing the earliest versions. Bugs aside, sometimes I make improvements to sections before any testing saves. There's no way to make older saves catch up to all those changes outside of adding special events that only increase the likelihood of bugs overall.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 11:55
Two questions then, when you release 50.0 will there be any new bugs that would merit a save before the new pron returns after Eustrin? Or would it be safely behind the trigger in the teleportation room?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 13:56
Once I release 0.50.0, the content of 0.49.0 won't change unless there's a serious bug or an extremely compelling reason to change something.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 20:52
JJS, I find something worth reconsidering my past decisions every two updates or so. Right now, I'm inclined to replay from before Gawnfall. I'd recommend to save often and keep your saves, when you use up all 100 save slots, you can just move them to a backup folder and start from 1 again. Also, this game is in development and patreon releases are primarily for bug hunting, so if going through the same stuff multiple times and chasing bugs isn't fun for you, I'd recommend you just wait for public releases before playing.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 21:34
One pot I spread out a lot of saves to the point I have over 80 and I did indeed have a save for the end of Eustrin that had me at the chapter 5 spot with the 4 npcs. So I kept replaying that to access the new features.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 13:46
I have a bit of a request. We've seen sprite animation for succubi fucking orcs plenty of times. But why not add new animations of them fucking other succubi, humans, and elves?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:02
I have some of those, but not all. I might be able to add more succubus/succubus animations.
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User #2909283 - 29 Feb 20 01:29
Biyue's wingjob in the Reflect menu crashes the game. Also it's such a dirty tease.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:12
And the reasons for it completely ridiculous. Even assuming that Tanurak was behind it the reasoning to show proof that Biyue isnt under any sexual domination is so laughable that it's not funny.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 02:12
Tanurak is getting rusty if that's the best he could do.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 02:19
I screwed up the reference to Biyue's faceset. Will have it fixed for the next version, thanks!
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 22:53
Visited Wynn's old crib and we finally learned the mystery of the yellow candles! It was as sweet and as cute as I hoped. And glad to see Min wasn't forgotten and still has our backs. Next time we see her I hope she needs our help pulling up a stool so she can reach the desk and the merchant guild and drop 1 million Pron on the table for her membership.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 23:07
The yellow candle conversation actually is 'old' stuff from chapter 4. I think it became available right after Wendis' maze, not sure though.
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 23:28
Huh really? Guess I never went back there, or I did and just forgot! Still cool though.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 23:32
I'm always glad when some old details can pleasantly surprise someone. ^-^
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User #8176682 - 1 Mar 20 02:13
I think you're on to something. Seeing Min become a member of the merchants guild.
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User #5341776 - 29 Feb 20 07:22
Quick thoughts: Yarra's statement about making the harem immortal on interacting with the new emergency backup divine shard in the Tower HQ might benefit from an update. The old lady from Feroholm in Stineford's Keeper's Tavern who unlocks the FEROHOLM REQUEST switch is still there. Her introductory dialogue seems to suggest she is the same character as the old lady in Feroholm who wanders south of Simon's old house. (Coordinates 029,018). If so, she's capable of being in two places at once. Either or both events could arguably do with some updates once the Feroholm upgrade gets started.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:00
Good suggestions. I implemented them except for that I'm okay with there being an indeterminate number of old women in Feroholm.
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User #5341776 - 29 Feb 20 15:48
Hopelessly in thrall to Ardoheim's "Big Monacle" lobby, I see. :p
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User #664110 - 29 Feb 20 18:34
Ardoheim just has a disproportionate number of old women with defective sight in one eye only. Presumably the Incubus King had a fetish for that at some point during the 2AW.
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User #5341776 - 29 Feb 20 18:51
It must have been quite an eyefull.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 13:38
When heading over to see the potion hermit if you didnt get the grey lotus in chapter 3. In chapter 4 we get a message saying melymyn reluctantly allows us to enter the glade. Should that message still be playing in chapter 5?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:02
This message is actually a result of Gawnfall, and it's still the deciding factor in whether or not you can enter.
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 11:27
Should there be a 'sublime claw' weapon? I ask if only so I can read just another one of those descriptions.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:01
Haha, I don't know if it would actually be functionally that distinct.
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User #664110 - 1 Mar 20 08:08
The reason to add a Sublime Claw would be for Uyae, who currently can't equip any Sublime weapon. There's also no Sublime Bow for Vhala.
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User #4340238 - 29 Feb 20 22:01
Super happy about more Tertia RP, but is Neranda's Tour retroactive? Because I only got +2 when I should have gotten +4 from last time (24 last, 26 now, 28 theoretical), since I know I got Major Tak'kan assistance at the Synod.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 23:30
There are a ton of different factors involved here, so it's difficult to say from just that. But the Neranda's Tour RP hasn't changed from previous versions at all.
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User #4340238 - 1 Mar 20 01:59
Oh, in that case it's probably nothing - everything else adds up. I noticed that the original setup had placeholders value and was wondering if there weren't any at all - but if that's the case, then looks like Simon'll have a ways to go before he can warm up to Tertia.
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User #8176682 - 29 Feb 20 13:20
In helvana the ivala chapel we normally visit Andra by heading through the left door. Why has that been blocked off?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 14:01
I open and close different sections to try to make the world feel more alive. But the real reason is that there's nothing interesting for Andra to say until she reappears later.
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User #15235866 - 29 Feb 20 06:47
Is the Sublime Ribbon the upgrade of the Old Ribbon Wendis alluded to earlier?
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 13:57
Nope, that will come later.
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User #211417 - 29 Feb 20 14:39
Clearly not, as it's not something that Simon can equip.
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User #4787752 - 29 Feb 20 16:41
WHICH A FIND A LITTLE BS! YOU TELLIN ME SIMON ISN'T ALLOWED TO WEAR COLORFUL RIBBONS IN HIS HAIR?
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User #664110 - 3 Mar 20 02:22
Unfortunately the feminine sexuality exuded by the ribbons is so sublime that if Simon equipped one his Incubus mojo would evaporate entirely and his whole harem would abandon him for Antarion. Either that or it's just not the right kind of accessory to benefit the power he uses in combat, and he could only equip it in the same sense that Robin could technically use a battleaxe. But probably it's the other thing.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 10:28
Some typos still around in 0.49.2: https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20orcentkara%20pg.4%20fingers%20fingers_zpsw5jnu6y0.png New Orcent/Kara scene, page 4: double 'fingers' towards the end of first paragraph https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20robin%20construct%20scene%20titfuck%20pg.4%20-%20between%20her%20LIPS%20not%20hips_zpsvxttkviv.png Robin Titfuck scene (unlocked via Magical Construczs research), page 4, end 1st paragraph: 'let him thrust between her LIPS', not hips https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20huH%20maybe_zps3b7d9ttd.png Tertia's harem recruitment talk with Yarra: I wonder if that's supposed to be 'Huh' at the start of the text there. Or maybe it's a kind of laugh, like a half huhu? Looks weird to me at least. https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20tertiahareminitiation%20pg.1%20-%20TODAY%20instead%20THAT%20DAY%20maybe_zpswwycc3qd.png Tertia's following scene, page 1, end 1st paragraph: TODAY she'd need nothing but... https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20tertiahareminitiation%20pg.4%20worshiPPING%20double%20P_zpsynhjv5pf.png Same scene, page 4 last line: worshiPPing with double p https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20lynine%20100%20scene%20pg.5%20-%20stayed%20There_zpsfiaqhfra.png Lynine 100RP 'Fuck' scene, page 5, second sentence: '...and stayed THERE', not 'here'
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 13:55
Thanks for the typo reports! Some always slip past everyone... >Tertia's harem recruitment talk with Yarra: I wonder if that's supposed to be 'Huh' at the start of the text there. Or maybe it's a kind of laugh, like a half huhu? Looks weird to me at least. Yeah, it's half a "huhu". >Tertia's following scene, page 1, end 1st paragraph: TODAY she'd need nothing but... Actually intentionally that way.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 20:19
>>Tertia's following scene, page 1, end 1st paragraph: TODAY she'd need nothing but... >Actually intentionally that way. Hm, I guess I get what you mean, still find it weird though because 'nothing but her hands and what she saw before her' is what she's already using right now.
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User #5097687 - 29 Feb 20 21:04
Aaand found 2 more in Antarion's new talk in Ardoheim cathedral: https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20antarion%20cathedral%20convo%20-%20aNointed%201%20n_zpsre1hsuny.png 'anointed' with one n I believe. https://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t403/onkelemma/49.2%20antarion%20cathedral%20convo%20-%20questG%20and%20aNNointing%20again_zpsctkifnvz.png A rogue g slid in there behind 'quest', also 'annointing' with double n again.
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sierralee - 29 Feb 20 22:56
Fixed, thanks!
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User #2909283 - 28 Feb 20 23:38
Talk about bizarre. I literally checked 2 minutes ago to see if 0.49.2 was out and saw nuthin'. Need to get a tune up on my goddess fucking senses to fix that timing issue.
TLS 0.49.0 Released! 2020-02-21T23:23:39+00:00

New version is here!


0.49.1 Link: https://mega.nz/#!z98XQZaT!1dMNmgXdcffZK5UWfS6mw3tHeVWLMlnYw8TnAVpf6Xc


TLS 0.49.1

- This is an awkward half-update. I don't prefer these, but I wanted an update to help people stuck in Eustrin. It has a ton of minor fixes, so use this one if you haven't played, but there's no reason to replay this one.


Link: https://mega.nz/#!X91kEYjS!Mk7GF4MTs0Pa6qua_dEdGrQYowwEI2c8iIQPa63mahI

RTP: https://mega.nz/#!m8sA2YIB!uXq6O8LBd3Jih09kPNAbvRkuRNlEC22P5jtkE48DJXQ


TLS 0.49.0

- Complete world overhaul for Chapter 5.

- Access to new nations: Erosia, Ghenalon, and Tatseni.

- Up to three new harem members (depending on your decisions).

- Several potential new staff members (heavily decision-dependent).

- Seven new plot scenes, plus four new affection scenes (NOTE: one of these is inaccessible for now).

- Four new synergy skills.

- Three new Orcent conversations/events.

- Assorted minor retroactive changes. Yhilini civilians comment on the Thenoursan War, the monster patrol investment has some cosmetic NPCs, etc.

I pushed too hard. =/ In retrospect I definitely should have interspersed more testing with core development, but that's a lesson for future cycles. For this one I'm courting burnout, so what's best for me is to launch now.

I didn't quite finish everything I wanted, but all the stuff you see on the list is done and in the game. I don't think this version will feel too buggy or incomplete, but I'm sure that version 0.49.1 will include additional content. Variables and checks are also likely to change, so don't take your only saves into this one. Even if you don't care about exact continuity, the chance that I forgot investment profits or relationship points is high.

This one includes a ton of stuff and I can only hope it feels plentiful in the playing, as there's content only available on certain paths. Lots of new sex scenes this time, including some that are new types of content for TLS. And one that I haven't seen done before... though that is the inaccessible one. >_<

There are some placeholder variables that might need to be updated. For those who have played, can you tell me...

1) Tertia's relationship value?

2) How much ProN do you have relative to new investments?

3) What's your Zirantia variable, before and after new investments?

Not sure what else to say. I rest now. Or after promo posts anyway. This weekend I'll put out a bugfix if necessary, then over the next two weeks I'll update oversights and add content as I have energy and inspiration. Hope you enjoy!

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Comments (69)
user avatar
User #14120479 - 22 Feb 20 05:29
Well, thats just evil of you dear Sierra. Now that you've mentioned so much decision based content I am doomed to multiple runs and a few coffee cups trying to figure out the best combo. At least now I know what I am going to do over the weekend :)
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 15:11
Ah, maybe I shouldn't have overhyped. It's not all that much branching content if you have optimized saves. I just wanted to be clear that not all saves will be able to access everything.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 02:22
Haven't seen anyone mention yet: the tree design tapestry things in the Tatseni government building are walkable, leading to that kid insulting me while standing on top of the walls, which was honestly funny enough it should almost stay. Separately, there seem to be quite a few people who know Simon is the Doom King (or at least *an* Incubus King), who I don't recall being told on-screen. Fhelial knows of his powers, at the end of the Thenoursan war all she guessed was that Simon's the power behind the throne. The one palace Zirantian asking for investment says she didn't expect the Doom King to be sent. And I'm sure there was a third somewhere on Arclent but I forgot by the time I got around to posting this :/
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 02:28
Oh, right, also Wendis's status box thing doesn't go away during her on-demand sex scenes, and the Erosia dungeon music keeps playing after taking out that King.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 02:53
Bugs fixed, thanks! Characters knowing about Simon... I don't think Fheliel's dialogue is inaccurate, but the Zirantian's might need to change. I'm usually a bit all over the place during updates, is there a chance you could specify which investment NPC?
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 02:59
Going back to check I think I was just misreading it. When the bunny talks about the Doom King coming directly to help, she doesn't mean right now, she means when we fought Estaven. My bad.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 02:52
And does anyone want to write a list for all the places we'll find the bat-shit crazy chosen?
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User #3339263 - 22 Feb 20 00:36
I can't seem to leave Eustrin, Or find the "little girl".
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 01:46
Eustrin exit is an oversight. Little girl is not.
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User #2292948 - 22 Feb 20 10:21
I'm also trapped in Eustrin.
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User #10518194 - 21 Feb 20 23:36
"Lots of new sex scenes this time, including some that are new types of content for TLS" It's here boys, Mestan heard about the gender changing magic mentioned by dude-Trin and s/he's finally joining the harem. Seriously though I hope you can find time to take a break if you need to Sierra, this update sounds really substantial as it is, regardless of it potentially being buggy.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 03:14
Minor bug in the projection: Janine's choice is triggered by walking into her sprite, all the others require you to point at them and press the interact key.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 03:50
Fixed, thanks!
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 05:36
The inevitable consequences of our deception of Renna don't appear to reduce the palace staff variable or otherwise deprive us of the benefits of her service.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 15:16
Do you mean the conditional branches aren't working or that there aren't consequences in the event? I realize I'm missing a save that copied Reletima, so there could easily be bugs, but I'm also spread thin replying/fixing.
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User #178986 - 22 Feb 20 16:03
It lowered in my game bringing me back down to 6. I checked afterwards when I saw that she left. So disappointed, hated that princess and figured there would be good things that could happen in the war with her copied. Didn't seem like it.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 18:00
Sorry, my brain was frazzled after 6 hrs of playtesting, I assumed the variable changes would be an effect of talking to Renna in the Doom King's Palace, but they're in an event at the start of the new content.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 00:12
Bug to report that we cant access riala research
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 01:45
Hmm. Unless I misread, this is just because the new iterate doesn't unlock it. I didn't notice because the save where I tested research was one of the bad saves that hadn't chosen research last time. -_-
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 01:55
Well we finish the project we started before chapter 5 and after doing that. The wendis research, I click on riala and then click research and nothing happens.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 01:56
Odd coincidence. My music shuffle gave me Steve Winwood's "Higher Love" for Simon & Wendis' first reunion scene. It just seems right somehow. www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9olaIio3l8
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User #4787752 - 22 Feb 20 01:24
An amazing update so far as I've had time to play. I love in the new sex scenes you seemed to put some focus on the Succubus unique body characteristics such as horns, tails and wings. Some minor bugs that I found, visiting the ruins in Zirtania talking to winged guy Uyae has a line where she refers to the third person oddly, and one of the npc has his direction stuck so he will moon walk wander.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 01:50
Glad you've enjoyed it! I don't do enough stuff with succubus traits, but always enjoy it when I do. Got the moonwalking NPC, but I'm not sure which Uyae line you mean.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 02:18
I'm pretty sure it's meant to be Biyue, and you just wrote the wrong name.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 03:00
No it's in the middle of the palace they talk to a Zirantian who takes the group to the set of ruins we entered with uyae the ruins she unlocked. There is a winged Zirantian here and after clicking to talk you click talk one more time and Uyae goes quote "Ah. Did Uyae tell you that we helped her?" I'm sure that Zaq is right and you meant to say "Biyue" not "Uyae"
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 03:46
Got it fixed, thanks!
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User #211417 - 22 Feb 20 05:53
Minor bugs: - Girl walking on walls : https://i.imgur.com/rcVnDba.png - Leftmost corner of fireplace hides us in Ghenalon inn https://i.imgur.com/NfJa3HR.png (same fireplace is also in some other building I think, with same problem, not sure where though) - Walking on top of things in the Erosia palace https://i.imgur.com/abfD6so.png - "Ohther" https://i.imgur.com/4iEJ5vh.png - "Nation Action Party" https://i.imgur.com/hHwqRY2.png - Wendis affection sex scene partially hidden by Wendis status box https://i.imgur.com/csQ6RPV.png
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 15:21
Bugs fixed, thanks for the reports with screenshots! A couple notes for future reference: - Tiles that can be walked on/under are almost always due to a single error in the tileset. So your screenshot covers all instances of it, no worries. - Screenshots of typos are helpful, but the whole screen is useful if context isn't clear. In this case I knew exactly where that dialogue was, but the game has a lot of dialogue.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 01:56
I loved the dialogue added when talking to that nun in Bertricias glade yarra says she should meet the guard in stineford.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 03:35
Stepping away from bug reports for a sec, has anyone got 3 new harem members? I've found 2, and 2 likely candidates for the 3rd spot, but Tertia and Elleani both imply they need time and plot before they'll join so I'm not sure which one I made a wrong decision with (if either).
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 04:47
I think you mean STAFF members.
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User #5029794 - 22 Feb 20 05:59
Which 2 did you find Zaq Reman? I thought I went everywhere and did everything but I only found Wendis.
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User #10518194 - 22 Feb 20 06:07
Fheliel is the second one stormy, I want to know the third too
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User #3339263 - 22 Feb 20 06:11
Queen Fheliel is probably the 2nd one. She's get-able but you need to win a very difficult fight. And the game bugs out if you lose.
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User #15235866 - 22 Feb 20 06:20
I'm also curious - only got Wendis and Fheliel.
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User #5029794 - 22 Feb 20 07:10
Weird. I won the fight first try but nothing happened with Fheliel. I guess I made a decision at some point that affected this? Makes me wonder what the decision(s) were.
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User #3339263 - 22 Feb 20 07:17
Found out, 3rd one is Tertia except it's not obvious how to get to her. Basically you have to access the lantern south of Wendis Wynn and Ballia.
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User #5029794 - 22 Feb 20 07:22
Q-Riff, I wouldn't consider them part of the harem (technically) until Yarra adds them to the list, which although I've both fought the good fight in Ghenalon for Fheliel and met and spoken with Tertia in this update neither of them have been added. They're hovering at the "almost but not quite" stage just like Elleani.
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User #3339263 - 22 Feb 20 10:28
You should check again they're added in my list. Tertia is #3 in the "Other" (Wendis is #1) Fheliel is 4 in 'leader'.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 12:42
Then I need to go back and make Tertia like me more.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 00:04
Thank you. I finally got to see the major confrontation with uyae and the silver foxes.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 00:46
FYI, it looks like the Stineford mine are needs some work. People still talk like there's been no final mine decision, the interior is accessible and so is the tower dungeon area...
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 01:47
Interior was meant to be locked. The NPCs, though... dangit. >_<
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 04:22
In our old guest room in the Zirantian palace, all of Yarra's dialogue events for poking the furniture are still active. (I'm assuming your last comment in my previous chain was a suggestion that new reports go in new root comments, but I may be misunderstanding it...)
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 04:27
Wasn't trying to say you had to use a new chain, just saying I had gotten everything up to that point. Using old chains is fine, though once the chain gets buried by Patreon it requires increasingly more clicks for me to get back to it. Anyway, I'll clear the old interactions in that room, thanks!
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 02:51
What will be the results for the red imp in our base when he gives us the choice to rebuild the farm for orcs, poor, or succubi? Apart from monetary differences?
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User #3302120 - 22 Feb 20 00:58
I'm having fun going everywhere looking for the psychotic chosen <(',) Really this guy travels to some of the most remote places
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 01:48
Haha, this one really gets around.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 03:08
Carina blocks the direct route from the Feroholm to Stineford regions like there was no Return to Stineford.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 03:10
Also, the door to the Academy Library is still blocked with a note that Elleani is working there.
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User #211417 - 22 Feb 20 03:17
Also Orcent is still in the other room, speaking as if the Return to Stineford arc is going on.
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 03:23
Yeah, there are a lot of NPCs in Stineford and Eustrin who don't seem to realize their plot sections have already finished.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 03:23
In the Ardford embassies, we meet the new embassy of the Chalice States at Vinario's old desk, but the sign at the other vacant desk still says no orcs or succubi need apply.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 03:24
Indeed Leto, I would honestly think that spot would be for Tak'kan an orc.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 03:54
Okay, I have every outdated instance in this chain updated. If there are others, they're not.
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User #5341776 - 22 Feb 20 04:42
I think that should be taken as invitation to enumerate specific Stineford and Eustrin instances Zaq Reman? Maybe?
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 15:32
Fair enough, once 49.1 drops I'll go through those areas again with a notepad open to write down anyone who hasn't been updated (or I could do it now if Sierra'd prefer redundant reports to reports that come an iteration later)
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 03:45
anyone else noticed champions that speak very insanely and then dissappear? I've found a few. I also got stuck in Eustrin when I couldn't find the way back out of Eustrin.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 03:51
For the record, the Eustrin exit is bugged.
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 03:52
looks like I'm gonna lose about an hour of work.
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 03:54
You could also wait for version 0.49.1.
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 03:55
it's only an hour, but I'll keep the saves, just in case.
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 03:56
what are those chosen? how many are there? they're placed so randomly, is there anything that happens if you find them all? Like the last one talks coherently?
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User #4082870 - 22 Feb 20 04:08
I didn't keep track of exact locations but there seem to be roughly 1 per teleport crystal (some regions have more, some don't have any). Either I missed some at the end or there's nothing special past the initial dialogue.
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 04:09
has anyone managed to record their dialogue and see if there's any meaning to it?
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 04:24
There are a ton of locations and a reward at the end. Someone will eventually just text dump, but I hope the search entertains for a little while. I put him in some obscure locations this time.
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User #6562094 - 22 Feb 20 04:50
Am I wrong, or is it saying the same thing every time?
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sierralee - 22 Feb 20 05:25
You're not wrong.
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User #8176682 - 22 Feb 20 16:29
Ok I have found 17 wandering chosen so far. One chosen in each Stenai, Erosia, Tatseni, Ghenelon, Zirantia, Aram desert, twisted glade, Ardoheim, New, Givini, Stineford, gasm falls and the tak'kan mine. Ferroholm I found three chosen. In yhilin I found two. Is there a third in yhilin or is there another somewhere else?
February 16 Update 2020-02-16T21:57:08+00:00

Though I never thought it was a realistic deadline, I've wished I could release TLS 0.49.0 this weekend. The timing of everything would have been very convenient, positioning TLS perfectly on the sides of book releases and other things. Plus, between phases I could do my taxes and other things I've been putting off. -_-

Right now, what I think would be best is to release on February 21st, then take two weeks in Patreon beta. It should be in decent shape then, but I don't think it will be quite finished. Lots of stuff is done, but I feel that it isn't enough. Two weeks would give everyone time not only to play, but to notice things I overlooked and potentially suggest new interactions/events. That would put the public release on March 6, which is workable.

To give this update more content-related material... I haven't yet mentioned that this release will involve a bunch of new maps. You'll be able to teleport to Ghenalon's capital at will, visit Tatseni for the first time, and return to Erosia in a time of peace. So expect new interactions, new stores, new Orcent conversations, and so forth.

One thing this update doesn't have much of is fights. There are only two, though both are new encounters with mechanics I think are a bit fun. One thing it does have in abundance is sex scenes. Eleven by my count, spanning a wide range of characters, types, and focuses. Should be fun overall.

Anyway, I should stop typing and get back to working. If all goes well, I'll be putting out a release next weekend!

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Comments (33)
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User #8176682 - 17 Feb 20 00:56
So if I read the post right Sierra said that realistically the update would be ready for us patreon users on February 21st?
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sierralee - 17 Feb 20 03:20
That is my goal.
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User #485234 - 17 Feb 20 04:50
Will we be able to visit Orgasmic Empire as well?
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sierralee - 17 Feb 20 05:55
Not yet. Renthnor teleportation will be unlocked after a set of major events coming several updates down the road.
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User #664110 - 17 Feb 20 07:26
I really want to see if Nalili has sufficiently prepared Carina for the ridiculousness of the Orgasmic Empire. I'm thinking not.
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User #485234 - 17 Feb 20 08:24
Well, Nalili could give Carina pretty much the same tour she gave Simon, but at the same time explaining things and showring her personal growth. It could be an interesting contrast.
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User #435478 - 18 Feb 20 15:13
I'm not sure even Carina, in her current, more worldly self, can handle that guide if you have both Yarra and Cum commenting on everything Nalilli describes... I'm REALLY looking forward to Carina meeting that child succubus in the palace who is so adorably innocent yet still so obviously a succubus. The sheer cognitive dissonance that would cause...
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User #9829041 - 18 Feb 20 17:50
It has been years since we've met her (I've lost count actually but at least 5 I think), and succubus grow quick. She's no child anymore.
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User #211417 - 19 Feb 20 04:37
If the timeline at https://thelastsovereign.fandom.com/wiki/Timeline can be trusted, it's more like 3 years + a few months
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User #5341776 - 20 Feb 20 00:02
You shouldn't take the Timeline as gospel, the guy who maintains it is an idiot.
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User #4787752 - 16 Feb 20 23:40
Sierra lee- "I've turned the sex scenes up to eleven. "
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User #6214130 - 16 Feb 20 22:56
Holy fuck. Ghenalon, Tatseni, scenes, new stores AND investments? This will be a tough week to wait through.
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User #8176682 - 17 Feb 20 00:59
Aren't all us patreon users excited for this release? First thing I'm going to do is head to Zirantia
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sierralee - 17 Feb 20 03:19
Don't expect too many new investments, but you'll be getting more returns and there will be a few impactful ones.
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User #727809 - 17 Feb 20 12:20
Orcent conversation in a bar, yaaaaay ! I love this side quest xD
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User #6214130 - 17 Feb 20 17:04
Philosophical discussion with Nalili on the virtues of anal sex
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User #15235866 - 18 Feb 20 22:39
"I play this game for the hawt, sexy philosophical discussions."
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User #5341776 - 20 Feb 20 00:08
Dumb question about some of the 0.48.0 content that's been bugging me. After the first conversation on human-dwarf impregnation, there was a quick sidebar dialogue between Altina and Lynine that seemed unmotivated. I'm using the Saner Altina variant, but I remember while trawling through the HQ event code seeing that Cockwhore Altina specifically asked Simon to knock her up in a conversation near the start of Ch4. I'm wondering if the Altina-Lynine discussion was supposed to be for Cockwhore Altina only.
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User #664110 - 20 Feb 20 04:36
That conversation has two variants for the two versions of Altina, but it may be that saner-Altina's desires haven't been made explicit before this point; I can't recall. If so, that may be an oversight. There is an HQ conversation where sluttier-Altina asks to be impregnated, but I couldn't find an equivalent for saner-Altina.
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sierralee - 20 Feb 20 14:38
Saner Altina doesn't want to be pregnant, but due to her experiences she still has an emotional reaction to Neranda's request.
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User #5341776 - 20 Feb 20 22:22
OK, I can't speak for anyone else, but the conversation seemed like a non-sequitur to me.
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User #664110 - 21 Feb 20 01:45
Saner-Altina's version of the conversation doesn't explicitly mention a sincere desire to be pregnant, but she does have a thing for Simon treating her like an "elf breeder" as a kink and/or a way of processing what happened to her at Withered Fortress. The conversation didn't seem out of place to me when I encountered it.
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User #5341776 - 21 Feb 20 01:47
I may have missed or forgotten that conversation. :(
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User #8176682 - 17 Feb 20 01:15
Are we going to get a warm welcome in Erosia? For reaching Kyangan and having enough pron for all those investments?
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sierralee - 17 Feb 20 05:54
You'll definitely get a chance to return to Kyangan.
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User #5097687 - 21 Feb 20 17:55
'Bug': Just noticed again that Altina's on-demand scenes are mixed up. In 'Seated', Simon fucks Altina from behind, while 'Behind' leads to the scene with Altina seated on Simon.
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User #664110 - 21 Feb 20 22:01
In all places where there are on-demand scenes, or just certain places?
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sierralee - 21 Feb 20 23:25
I was really rushing putting out the current update, so I might have overlooked something, but when I tried to check this, I couldn't find the bugged ones. More info would help, thanks.
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User #5097687 - 22 Feb 20 08:05
Talking to Altina in Headquarters B1 and accessing her sex menu gives you the choice between 3 sex scenes, the second being named 'Seated' and the third one 'Behind'. I think the names are mixed up, scene 2 should be named 'Behind' and scene 3 'Seated'. My original post referred to 48.0, I just reproduced it on 49.0 though. Not sure what more info I could give you. Maybe I'm just reading it wrong, it just would make more sense to me if those two scene names were swapped.
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User #664110 - 24 Feb 20 12:51
Don't think there's an error here. The second scene has them seated and in the third scene Simon stands (not sits) behind her. It's also consistent with Altina's menu in Yhilin Palace and with their internal ordering in the game files.
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User #5097687 - 27 Feb 20 03:42
I see, my mistake then, sorry.
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User #14120479 - 17 Feb 20 04:05
Fights are fun, but I really like to just roam around the world, fish for new stiff and watch the place grow and develop. I think lore and world development stuff is far more challenging to do right than just dungeon crawl and by far more enjoyable, at least for me. Really looking forward to this release :)
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User #178986 - 17 Feb 20 00:15
wow, be nice to visit everywhere again. Cant wait as with some of my games I have a ton of PRON from not being able to do investments during the last section of chapter 4, stineford tower being one.
February 9 Update 2020-02-09T23:39:19+00:00

Everybody who didn't see the previous update: I'm fine! My furnace got fixed almost immediately on Monday, so I had a warm week. More importantly, I had an enjoyably productive week.

Building momentum on these broad updates can be difficult. I could write a huge amount of new NPC dialogue in an eight hour workday, but I've never actually done a day of nothing but that, because so many unrelated lines just wear me down. Usually I end up taking a break, or at best working on something different (some of you may be pleased to know that I've written a bunch of new sex scenes for this upcoming update).

Another aspect of the open world updates is that sometimes after a good day of work my list has actually lengthened. This is because items like "Update Ardford" get replaced with several specific items for more elaborate interactions or quests. Crafting an update where everything is new, events respond to player choices, and there are events around the world involves juggling a huge number of variables.

I felt pretty good about what I managed this week, though. There were a few bumps, but I mostly rolled over them and kept up progress. Some areas are basically done, but there's still much more to do.

Meanwhile, we have something fun: another player has written fanfiction! You can find the scenes from here:

https://thelastsovereign.fandom.com/wiki/Thread:17521

These are some nice vignettes featuring Robin and Riala. Feel free to check them out!

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Comments (10)
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User #3076718 - 10 Feb 20 00:02
Zamboni those bumps!
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User #8176682 - 10 Feb 20 00:25
Yes I know what mean Sierra, you can write so much that it feels like you need to stop for a bit. And it's nice to know you're warm again.
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User #6214130 - 10 Feb 20 15:06
Is it too early to ask for an estimation on the release date of this particular update, since it's one of the larger ones? Do you expect a february or march release, Sierra? And if you can't say yet, don't worry Sierra, i'm just anxious to get a look on the lay of the land for chapter 5. :)
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sierralee - 10 Feb 20 17:44
I can't confidently give a date when the content is so sprawling instead of linear, but if the release isn't out in February something has gone wrong.
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User #8176682 - 10 Feb 20 18:11
Well that's an ominous answer Sierra Lee. And I agree with DankPotatoes that we all are anxious to see how things develop. The one thing I am most curious about, is Zirantia updates. Will we have Uyae get to confront the two foxes for the way she was treated by the divine claw? And will the NUP finally be able to take formal control of Zirantia if we chose to support them since the OZL people's action party divine claw and all the other groups are either broken or not strong enough.
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User #664110 - 9 Feb 20 23:44
Good to hear the Sierra no longer feels like the tundra, and interesting to hear a bit about your process.
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User #15235866 - 10 Feb 20 01:52
I'm curious to see developments in Zirantia. Hopefully they're ready for some outside investment; even if it's not particularly profitable, no one should live in slums on Simon's continent!
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User #8176682 - 10 Feb 20 02:02
Prophetic words I think "Simon's continent" Supporting the New Unionist Party, I suspect we will soon control Zirantia in all but name. And with new developments with tyna I believe we will soon have peace with ardoheim and stineford. So Arclent may be "Simon's continent" before the chapter is over.
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User #5341776 - 10 Feb 20 04:49
Simon's incontinent? I hope Tertia doesn't get roped into the diaper thing again...
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User #664110 - 11 Feb 20 15:58
Why would you make me read this willful gross misinterpretation with my own two eyes?
February 2 Update 2020-02-02T21:39:21+00:00

It's so freaking cold. My furnace went out, but when the repairman came, he needed to leave to get a part. Then it was fixed for a day, but failed over night, so he had to come back, then get another part. They don't work on the weekend, so... my poor icicle fingers. T-T The upside is that my insulation is apparently better than I thought.

Anyway, this isn't an announcement of major delays or anything, I'm just griping to stay warm. This sort of thing is a distraction, and the cold slows me down a bit, but progress continues! I've now hammered through a whole lot of the dialogue updates, plus various other pieces of new content to keep myself interested. There should be more scenes than average.

Hopefully my next update will be from a warm house with a lot of progress having been made.

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Comments (26)
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User #3130796 - 2 Feb 20 22:50
Sending warm thoughts.
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User #5341776 - 2 Feb 20 23:33
I've found that being very large and disgustingly morbidly obese is a good way to save on heating bills. The main problem is that one-legged New Englander with a harpoon and a crazy look in his eye at the local YMCA. (My weight problem is not in any way correlated with my porn game addiction. That is slander!)
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sierralee - 3 Feb 20 00:00
Whoops, it's too late to gain weight to save on heating this winter. I've made terrible life choices.
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User #2909283 - 2 Feb 20 21:54
My inner Yarra compels me to remind you that goddess fucking is a warm activity. Down, inner Yarra, down! Seriously though, hope you manage to stay warm.
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User #4505856 - 2 Feb 20 22:24
I strongly recommend getting gloves and a heated blanket, just in case this happens again.
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sierralee - 2 Feb 20 23:59
Never fear! I bike in the winter for exercise, so I'm pretty well set for winter gear.
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sierralee - 4 Feb 20 00:17
I should have expected this would get a response, but in my defense... I was cold. Anyway, I'm just updating for anyone checking back to say that my house is again warm. It got fixed really quickly on Monday and they said all would be well now. If they'd had the parts they needed on hand, it could all have been done in one day last week.
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User #664110 - 4 Feb 20 13:03
Good to hear.
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User #6214130 - 4 Feb 20 14:03
Good to hear. Stay frosty, Sierra.
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User #8176682 - 4 Feb 20 23:10
That's always the issue isn't it? I'm glad to hear it's fixed. But there's always some problem such as not having the part that you needed. And if they had had it then you would've has the furnace fixed well before now. And that sort of thing is always our problem with anything that needs doing. I.E years ago my family hired people to do some work on the bathrooms in the house. We went to Disney World for a week. When we got back they still weren't done. For shit sake there is no way it should've taken them more than a week to finish that kind of work.
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User #10518194 - 3 Feb 20 06:55
You could always use a small heater, though they drive up the electric bill, smell unpleasant, need so much power they sometimes blow my circuit out, and only work for one room... I'm lucky I live in California.
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User #3076718 - 3 Feb 20 06:59
I like the tower heater, except it doesn't warm my feet at all. Still, it's easier on the circuits then the small space heater for my feet. And, no I cannot run them both at the same time.
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User #8176682 - 3 Feb 20 16:20
If you are truly freezing I'd think it's worth paying it. Even if it's not worth that don't you have somewhere else you could go to until they fix your furnace and it stays fixed?
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sierralee - 4 Feb 20 00:14
In theory, but I want to keep working. =/ This is the disadvantage of moving off laptops.
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User #191116 - 2 Feb 20 23:00
Hope you warm again soon!
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User #3076718 - 2 Feb 20 23:51
dogs. and blankets. Also if you tack blankets in open doorways (if you have any) it will help your insulation a bit more. But still, here is hoping your furnace woes will soon be a thing of the past.
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User #7470373 - 3 Feb 20 21:58
Gotta make sure furnace breakages happen on Mondays in the future.
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sierralee - 4 Feb 20 00:14
Haha, yes, I'll try to schedule them better in the future.
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User #822936 - 3 Feb 20 14:08
I was under the impression there was emergency people to address those kinds of issues so you aren't without heat :o
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sierralee - 3 Feb 20 16:16
There are definitely emergency people, but since I'm not in imminent danger, I'd have to pay a lot of special fees.
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User #822936 - 3 Feb 20 16:48
I'm glad you aren't in... serious danger. Still sucks. Is space heater(s) an option?
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sierralee - 4 Feb 20 00:13
Yeah, I borrowed a space heater from somebody. See the comment I'm going to write below for an update.
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User #15235866 - 3 Feb 20 08:28
Maybe I just live in a colder climate or work with better companies, but from my experience, it's UNHEARD of that they would say, "well, you'll have to be without heat for the weekend, because I'm off until Monday." No one would put up with that around here.
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sierralee - 3 Feb 20 16:16
It's the downside of being in a low cost-of-living area. They do have weekend staff, but they make you pay through the nose for it.
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User #178558 - 3 Feb 20 02:20
What kind of service company are you using that doesn't work on weekends, especially on something they failed to fix? They should give you a massive discount on your bill, and if they don't, they should be replaced as well.
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User #3302120 - 3 Feb 20 00:10
Cheap handwarmers at Walmart come through in a pinch. If your water heater is still good then a nice soak in a warm bath :) Then there is the food lovers choice of using this as an excuse to bake lots of cookies and other delectable treats XD Hopefully they are able to fix your furnace soon... Bundle up and try to keep warm
Finished Scene Art Set: Stineford Edition
Finished Scene Art Set: Stineford Editionmore_vert
2020-01-29T15:47:09+00:00
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Finished Scene Art Set: Stineford Edition 2020-01-29T15:47:09+00:00close

Generally fewer people are on at this hour, but my furnace is busted and it's freezing cold and so my schedule is off anyway. Might as well post for all the people in different time zones.

I considered naming this one "Prostitute Edition" but you never know when Patreon will change its mind. The reason there haven't been any art posts in a little while is because I was saving up all the NPC scenes for one big post.

In my ongoing quest to make the game's large number of CGs diverse, this set includes some variety in framing and concept. If the game had only 12 scenes, I wouldn't do something like the Aka one, but I think it's some nice added variety. I also like the second one with the succubus prostitute, where the scene is entirely implication. This set is overall more POV to contrast with the party member scenes.

We're getting closer to finishing the first chapter. A few more plot scenes, four affection scenes, and the joke scenes.

Comments (18)
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User #3076718 - 29 Jan 20 15:56
I love that look of longing in Aka's face. Who is the green haired woman? One of the succubi from the tower? Edit: sorry to hear about your furnace!
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sierralee - 29 Jan 20 16:09
The green-haired woman is the local prostitute with Yhilini ancestry.
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User #919225 - 29 Jan 20 19:57
Oh noes you made Aka sad... the guilt trip is strong in this one. I love the characters so much that for once in a NSFW game I decided not to partake in the Ladies of the Night of Stineford!
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User #6216065 - 1 Feb 20 02:14
Oh wow, the catgirl one is hot, seriously blows everything else out of the water. I have an issue with the sad Aka scene... the whore is absolutely levitating in the air. She is not really leaning against the wall and Simon is not proping her up. He should be much closer to her, or she should at least throw her arms around his neck or something. I mean at this point Simon doesn't have a secondary shadow tentacle dick to prop her up yet...
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sierralee - 1 Feb 20 04:18
Glad you like the Zirantian scene. I thought the effect turned out well. The exotic prostitute is intended to have her arms and shoulders against the wall.
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User #8225764 - 29 Jan 20 21:01
I'm honestly so excited for these to be all ready, they look great!
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User #4787752 - 30 Jan 20 09:25
Aka's stomach looks odd...is that her being partially concealed by Yarra's illusions?
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User #664110 - 30 Jan 20 09:38
I believe what you're seeing is part of Aka's top, not her midriff.
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sierralee - 30 Jan 20 14:40
If you're referring to the yellow part, she has a band of cloth sort of like a wide belt.
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User #8244170 - 29 Jan 20 20:39
Looks great ! But Aka doesn't deserve to be sad ;-;
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User #16888332 - 30 Jan 20 04:20
I would love to see more reaction shots of the harem "taking peaks" during scenes. Particularly Yarra since watch is kinda her thing and Vhala since its NOT her thing (but she mentions her "personal relationship" with the girls).
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User #664110 - 29 Jan 20 21:37
I love the exotic prostitute scene and the art made for it... but I'm glad actually cucking Aka like that is optional. And aww look at the happy succubunny.
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User #8491280 - 30 Jan 20 00:33
I'm very happy with the direction of the art and the constant improvement in faces as time has gone on.
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User #4505856 - 30 Jan 20 05:43
I find myself warming up to this artist. Perhaps because Stineford is such a nostalgic memory for me, having completed that section of the game so many times. I am surprised that Aka's moment in the brothel doesn't have a second part with Yarra and Cumdump sidling up to her. I am delighted, nonetheless, to see the assassin illustrated so well.
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sierralee - 30 Jan 20 14:39
It was considered, but I want to limit how many scenes have major variants.
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User #7546044 - 30 Jan 20 21:23
These are looking good. Really looking forward to the first art update. I'm planning to start my “dark side” play through when it comes out. I know the choices in this game aren't really a good/evil dichotomy, but there are certain things I did in my main play through because it seemed like the right thing to do. Like refuse to whore Qum, and choose saner Altina and reshaped Varia.
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User #4157509 - 30 Jan 20 08:23
Furnace being busted sucks! Hopefully it's something simple like the pilot being out. Art looks cool! Annikath is hitting their stride, I think. 1. This is probably the least furry furry I've ever seen, lol. (it's impressive!) 2. Aka's stern disapproval is on point. 3. Her not looking at the viewer is an aesthetic choice, but also appropriate in the context of the scene. 4. That succubus sure is flexible! 5. That succubus sure is enticing! 6. She's so happy! 7. Simon, those clothes are expensive! For shame!
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sierralee - 30 Jan 20 14:40
Thanks for all your feedback! >Furnace being busted sucks! Hopefully it's something simple like the pilot being out. Parts need to be ordered. T-T The repairman said they wouldn't be expensive, but I have to wait until at least tomorrow.
January 26 Update 2020-01-26T21:44:09+00:00

It's been a while since we've done an update that was just focused on a single aspect of development. Since one of the things I did last week is suited to that, we'll do it.

Yhilin has updated less frequently than some other locations for a single reason: the fact that the player can control the major change of reaching the "Final Yhilin" state. Doing a lot of minor updates unrelated to the player's progress would multiply my work, so there have been fewer. I know for all the optimizers that means it's been unchanged, but I think this works best overall.

However, that doesn't mean Yhilin will remain static through the end of the game. Now that we've entered Chapter 5, if your Yhilin was already in "Final" state, it will receive an update. New dialogue for almost all NPCs, some cute little changes, and so on. Call it Final+1. In the postgame, it will update again to Final+2. If you can't finalize Yhilin until Chapter 5, your postgame scene will be Final+1. Hopefully this way all players get an updating experience regardless of when they make the change.

Since I'm already going around making all those changes, I've added a fair amount of the postgame dialogue controlled by the same variable. This is content that only those decrypting the game will see for a long time (nothing spoilery, don't worry), but it will save work down the road when I create the postgame.

Unrelated to this post, I participated in a themed ebook sale. My books along with a whole set of other fantasy titles are all free or on sale right now. You can find them all linked from this post along with synopses:

https://old.reddit.com/r/ProgressionFantasy/comments/esahmc/progression_fantasy_super_sale/

If you were waiting on a sale for my books, or if you're interested in any of the others, now is a good time to pick them up!

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Comments (22)
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User #9140699 - 26 Jan 20 22:08
Cool stuff about Yhilin. I've become rather attached to the place and I like that it isn't fading into the background as the rest of the world marches on. A question about the Final + 1 and Final +2 states. Will these only trigger on chapter transitions, such as 4-> 5 or 5->Postgame? Also will Yhilin still have a degree of "currentness" regardless of the state that it is in? For example will some NPCs in Yhilin Finial (current version) comment on Ch 5 stuff for players who don't trigger it in early chapter 4? Eagerly looking forward to the next open world section. Got pron to spend and am looking forward to how things are progressing in certain places. I hope that Tanurak's subtle touch is having an impact in some areas. If the worst that he does is toss spider at us (nasty, nasty spiders to be fair) then he isn't really being enough of a dick imo.
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sierralee - 26 Jan 20 22:41
The updates to Yhilin will be on chapter transitions, yes. Its degree of currentness will be similar to what it was in Chapter 4: some, but less than many locations. Any chapter-based updates will happen across all states, it's just more of a pain to create them.
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User #8176682 - 27 Jan 20 02:30
Honestly I'm fond of Yhilin myself, especially for the chapter 4 final state you see that cute little succubus girl chasing the human girl in the rose district "No fair, you can't use your wings" I'm gonna catch you!" And her father surrounded by them saying "Ivala above, they're ten times as much trouble together! I never should have agreed to watch my neighbor's daughter..."
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User #8176682 - 27 Jan 20 02:38
But I think the most significant progress wasnt seeing the final state in chapter 4 but all the progress being made in chapter 3 funding the petitions. Most significantly funding the elven slums, fancy walk and doom king statue, so that by the time of the third arclent war when we get to the second yhilin coup attempt it gets crushed but we see the people of yhilin defend a succubus see an ogre defend the palace. And most important of all. Janine mentions the coup fighters tried to rally the elven ghetto against her and the palace, but the elves refused them completely. It's nice to see all the good that has been done and all the good we can still do in the future.
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User #4167970 - 27 Jan 20 03:58
For all the stuff you have in this awesome game, you are going to have to think about making an old school Nintendo power strategy guild. Like the one for FF1. Yes I'm old. Lol
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sierralee - 27 Jan 20 05:20
Haha, I have a bit of nostalgia for those guides too. They're fairly work-intensive to create, though, so perhaps I'd better leave it to others!
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User #664110 - 27 Jan 20 05:52
Those things were always full of minor inaccuracies and never as detailed as necessary. Wikis and online guides are better, if lighter on decoration.
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User #2909283 - 27 Jan 20 00:12
So we won't find the bit where Janine, seeing Tak'Kan actually work, reforms Yhilin into a democracy and retires to Simon's estate where she tends to a flower garden when they aren't going to the opera?
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sierralee - 27 Jan 20 05:19
There will be a massive amount of work left for the postgame. Because I won't need to follow up branching paths with duplicated work, a variety of changes I haven't done will occur then.
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User #3339263 - 29 Jan 20 15:31
Besides the environmental stuff which I'm looking forward to in the next update. I'm more interested in combat updates in particular Carina is pretty redundant as she's a pretty slow healer (others can heal for more and faster) and the defensive buff can be done by Hilstara, and synergy skills for other characters with her aren't any good (Holy shield wall is a marginal upgrade, and healing masturbation doesn't heal for much at all) Also since Simon's absorbed the IK's shard fully why is he only stuck with one use of King's Aura still, I know we got some new/upgraded skills at the beginning of chapter 5 but I think some of the fun is unlocking those new skills. It feels rewarding.
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User #6214130 - 30 Jan 20 10:55
As a general rule, pretty much every party member are the best at a particular role, including Carina. And that means that there are several fights in the game where Carina is the clear strongest choice. Yes, Hilstara can buff defenses and yes, there are other healers. But no other character has the ability to do both, and usually fast enough to outspeed most opponents.(And while it's true that Hilstara can buff, she is so slow, that all enemies will have attacked by time she used that buff) Carina is by no means obsolete. I only got through the Eustrin Spider fight thanks to combining her buffs and heals with Vhalas debuffing
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User #16543184 - 28 Jan 20 16:54
I absolutely love your content; The Last Sovereign has become one of my favorite RPGs and I can't wait to see where it goes! Unfortunately my financial situation is changing and I can't support any more, but I will be following along, and I will be back! :D
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sierralee - 28 Jan 20 23:25
I'm sorry to hear about your financial situation, but I'm glad to have you enjoying my work! There will be a lot more TLS for you when you get back. ^-^
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User #6214130 - 26 Jan 20 21:50
Looking forward to seeing The Last Yhilin: The Final final of Final Yhilin: Final Chapter
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User #485234 - 27 Jan 20 04:48
What about completely wrecked Yhilin? Will they finally rebuild without my help? And i tried so hard to make it in ruins in the first place...
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sierralee - 27 Jan 20 05:20
Right now, there's nothing that helps bad saves at all.
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User #664110 - 27 Jan 20 05:53
Only You Can Save Yhilin
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User #485234 - 27 Jan 20 06:17
So, how i picture it. We're having a happy ending amidst the ruins. Janine and Simon are sitting on the edge of a huge crater that once was Arclent drinking succubi moonshine and chat amicably. Simon takes a heary swig and gestures at the crater with his half full bottle and smiles serenely. Bells are heard. Hester and Alonon are dancing merrily at the center of it. Ghost of the Incubus Emperor is playing the world smallest violin just for you. Ivala is smiling that little smile of hers and holding a placard reading "Ya dun fooked up".
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User #8176682 - 27 Jan 20 02:20
Basically you're saying that for those who achieve a "final" state in chapter 4 will see 2 extra upgrades for yhilin in chapter 5?
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sierralee - 27 Jan 20 05:20
One in Chapter 5, one in the postgame.
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User #8195103 - 27 Jan 20 18:12
I'm honestly kind of amazed that you can write content for the postgame so far in advance. I probably shouldn't be; I know a lot of writers do scene writing in advance and work up to it. But conversation always feels so context-dependent to me that I really find I can only ever write conversations in order. Considering how responsive to context the content of TLS feels, I get the impression that you must have an awfully precise picture of what things are supposed to look like by the end of the game.
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sierralee - 27 Jan 20 23:32
Well, these are minor NPCs, so their dialogue isn't that involved. I do have a very clear picture of most elements of TLS. I generally do before I've written very much of any given story, as I'm a planner by nature. However, I find that there's a cost to writing out of order - no matter how clear my plans may be, some details change, resulting in a bunch of editing that's theoretically unnecessary.
January 19 Update 2020-01-19T21:57:29+00:00

I think 2020 has gotten off to a good start, but unfortunately I've had to spend some time lately on promotional junk. Hopefully that's almost over and I can focus on creative work. In theory I should be able to devote over a solid month to that work before there will be a wave of releases.

Meanwhile, we hit an arbitrary milestone: 1000 patrons! It will drop below a thousand at the end of the month, and if current trends will continue, it will waver around and hit that number more than once. Still, it's nice to have so many of you supporting my work. ^-^

Speaking of fan enthusiasm, someone created a little bit of TLS fanfiction they wanted me to link:

https://thelastsovereign.fandom.com/wiki/Thread:17373

Anyway, that's all for this week. Hopefully the next will be a quiet and productive one.

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Comments (6)
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User #8646661 - 26 Jan 20 10:44
I don't know if it was intentional, but I was in the Blue Rose during the Steinford section in Chapter 5, when I rested after the cave, I didn't get the normal fun sprite animation, I got a bald sprite standing still over Simon. I don't know if it was a placeholder or just a glitch.
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sierralee - 26 Jan 20 14:51
This is a known bug, but one that I can't solve. All the animations seem to work individually and I don't have a theory about what interaction causes one of them to break when with the others.
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User #2909283 - 19 Jan 20 22:31
I have an idea for an investment opportunity. Hire a succubus to put an illusion on a statue so that Antarion thinks it's a beautiful woman who's really into him. Have her set up shop near the Merchant's Guild so everyone in Ardford gets to see him flirting with said statue. The succubus could sell tickets! And yes, this started with that fanfic.
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User #6214130 - 19 Jan 20 23:55
How about investing in a parade of succubi, humans and orcs dancing through the streets of Ardford, only to stop in front of the Blademaster's Guild, and revealing a giant banner spelling "Antarion sucks flaccid cock" The cost would be high, but it would certainly provide some social score
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User #435478 - 21 Jan 20 11:24
Hey Sierra, just got back from vacation so I'm still catching up on the game, and I'm not sure if this has already been reported, but in Stineford on the newer content? It is entirely possible to do all the quests (except Sarai's) and thus go to her and choose "Final Preperations" or whatever the option is, leading to the whole scene with Annah and the Chosen... but without doing that quest, neither Sarai nor Annah are available to talk to in the Cathedral Courtyard. This leaves any player who saves there stuck - a 100% gamebreaking bug, because you cannot progress without talking to them. You're going to need to add a trigger to that option even showing up, where that quest is completed. Because the option is there both if the quest is not complete, and also if you never even took it to begin with.
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sierralee - 21 Jan 20 15:10
No, this hasn't been reported! I think the fact that Sarai's presence is dependent on her quest is an oversight from the previous concept of that scene, which has just been corrected. Thanks!
TLS 0.48.2 Public Release 2020-01-17T23:12:35+00:00

New update and notes available on the blog:

http://the-last-sovereign.blogspot.com/2020/01/tls-0482-public-release.html


More to say on Sunday.

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Comments (31)
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User #2540339 - 22 Jan 20 22:21
/late: 0.48.2 is looking good. The extra Neranda moments are a good mix of humour and earthy seriousness. The spider combat balance feels better - less RNG-sensitive, but they can still hit very hard. The boss fight took a bit of reviving in the first few rounds, but it was much easier to get it under control with buffs/debuffs. I'd almost say that the debuff resistance could be increased a fraction to make Vhala have to work a little harder for her dominance, but I'm maybe speaking too much from the position of someone who's replayed this fight over and over. Minor typo - forgot to get a screenshot, sorry. When all spiders are exterminated to trigger the boss mob appearing, Riala says "There are more Dwaregasts to the south", but the plural has been "Dwaregast" elsewhere.
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sierralee - 23 Jan 20 01:48
Thanks for the feedback, and typo fixed!
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User #5346862 - 19 Feb 20 03:34
Hello, I am an artist that want to work with you. Are there any way to contact you ?
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sierralee - 19 Feb 20 04:53
Hello! You can email me here: (email removed)
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User #8244170 - 18 Jan 20 10:34
I'm still stuck at the start of the update, the dwarf guarding the tunels won't let me go past him. I've spoken to Neranda and everyone in Eustrin and I cleared the tower up to the point Riala says we should investigate further. Any idea ?
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User #664110 - 18 Jan 20 13:16
There are two dead ends in the Tower where Riala comments. You need to have seen the one where you actually bring Neranda into the Tower, not just the one on the far east edge of the map.
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User #8244170 - 18 Jan 20 15:01
Thank you ! I feel a bit silly not finding out that you could jump at the end of the north path in the tower.
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User #2909283 - 18 Jan 20 05:27
Hope Neranda isn't the only potential inductee to come next update, although I look forward to at least having her axe. All dwarves come with axes right?
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sierralee - 18 Jan 20 05:32
There are a couple characters who, like Janine, will be able to join based on your decisions. Their times will finally come soon, though I can't promise next update.
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User #8910657 - 18 Jan 20 16:02
Just as a funny aside, the version number on the client and the download are different (client says 48.1, download says 48.2). I'm fairly sure the new version is linked since I'm seeing the described debuff resistance nerfs. I'm running the Nightmare fight some more, and as of the latest patch it seems pretty achievable to win 100% of the time with the Simon Hilstara Vhala Carina team I commented about last time. I'll be looking at other teams soon, but it's at the point where proper prep always succeeds at least.
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User #8910657 - 18 Jan 20 16:20
Update: A glass cannon team works pretty well now assuming Vhala can get a defensive rain off at first. I ran Riala and Robin and just fireblasted the spiders into the ground. If there's a team that doesn't work, it doesn't have Vhala on it, probably. This is a well equipped and trained file, but honestly the damage might be a little low outside Dwarf Killer which still often oneshots. A small bump would hit some specific breakpoints where if the player is lax about debuffing later in the fight, something might still happen to turn the tides. Specifically I'm thinking of Carina, who could potentially die in 2 hits without the benefit of debuffs, or 1 from dwarfkiller, with just a tiny bit more damage. 5% would do it I think. Edit: Update 2: Vhala can carry Nalili and Yarra to a win with good equipment. First try. I can't think of teammates offhand that would be worse for this fight, which probably means Vhala can carry with anyone. I did have to use revival goo though.
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sierralee - 18 Jan 20 17:45
The version number is different because I failed to update it. =/ Well, I'm disgruntled that people can just use their glass cannon teams now, but I'll leave it as is.
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User #8910657 - 18 Jan 20 18:26
Aka is a common factor in a lot of people's attempts and she absolutely can't hard carry that fight like Vhala can, and my equipment is basically at cap, so I think the majority of players will still find it challenging / die several times learning the ins and outs. If you're not running a somewhat buff / debuff centered team it's still gonna be really tough. I also have the Incubus Glove, which is not going to be the case for everyone. It's a really large factor in how flexible my teams can get if I have Vhala, and honestly, the heal buff it extends is kind of insane. I really appreciate the combat challenge, after I got past it the first time it's given me a lot of replay value for this update. Having a great time with it.
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User #6214130 - 19 Jan 20 09:37
For the record Sierra, A Glass Cannon team is still very unreliable in the fight, and dies far more often than not. I think most players who play 48.2 first will still find that their best chance is using a tanky/ debuff team. Honestly the main culprit at play here is Offensive Rain. It's just such a strong skill that it leaves any fight with multiple opponents as a cake walk
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User #7631155 - 19 Jan 20 16:47
Vhala's nerfing upcoming in v. 0.49.x, I'm calling it.
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User #8910657 - 19 Jan 20 17:28
I think mostly her downsides are high enough that she's fine, but this fight has a chance to completely mitigate most of them. Mana management in particular is usually a problem I have since Yarra can't heal her mana, and her damage is so-so unless a fight is long and there's an anti-sex weakness, but none of those things are problems here. It's even an aoe fight.
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sierralee - 19 Jan 20 17:47
I think it's fine (even preferable) for Vhala to be MVP sometimes.
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User #8910657 - 19 Jan 20 19:05
Yep! I rarely use her outside big fights, owing to the mana thing, so this was a good time to learn her kit a bit better. I never actually understood her scaling all that well until the last week or so.
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User #7631155 - 19 Jan 20 20:47
Remember that despite not being healed by Qum, she gets Mana from both Illusory Orgy and Orgasmic Thoughts. This is about 150-180 MP per battle, if you're able to prolong the fights long enough.
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User #8910657 - 19 Jan 20 20:55
I had no idea that worked, and assumed it didn't because Sexual Mana doesn't work. Seems like an oversight, but good to know, I might get more use out of Vhala going forward thanks to that.
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User #6214130 - 19 Jan 20 21:32
Qum's love surpasses all physical barriers
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User #6214130 - 19 Jan 20 21:42
That being said, i think it's pretty damn impressive how you've managed to balance 13 different characters to a point, where they ALL have a unique purpose in combat and can be situationally useful in a RPGM game Sierra. I have had moments throughout Chapter 4 where i willingly used every single party member, because they legitimately felt the best for a particular fight. The weakest links as of right now are probably Altina, who is outcompeted by Riala in both damage and flexibility, and Nalili. Nalili is probably my own fault. I'm just not sure on how to use her best. I'm not sure if i should give her a BP, Tormented Shield or something else entirely.
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User #8910657 - 19 Jan 20 21:49
Tormented shield and the ability to buff her own attack makes her my go to for dealing lots of damage in longer fights, especially since when her own buffs are ending Simon can use king's aura to refresh them with longer duration. Her dpt is comparable to Varia, and better in longer fights I think, but she doesn't use hp as a resource. Altina can be overshadowed a bit, though, yeah.
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User #6214130 - 19 Jan 20 23:58
I don't see Nalili standing up to Special-blade Varia, even with the Tormented Shield. Varia just wrecks fucking shop with any of her HP- draining attacks on an unseen scale. The Echo of Corruption in the late Stineford Chapter? Varia was the only "pure damage" character on my team, and yet that thing went down in 2 turns. I would say she is OP, but she is limited by fast opponents and tough bosses.
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User #10518194 - 24 Jan 20 08:24
So I just got done testing the optional combat and was able to clear a hard pack with no restarts and the boss pack with only 2 restarts with Vhala/Nalili/Hilstara as my party. Much better than being pigeon holed into using Hilstara or Carina and Qum/Robin and praying that the boss doesn't randomly decide to ORKO Simon from full hp after it's down to a third hp which happened on my initial clear in 48.0 multiple times. I am biased though as the original three are my go to against any physical enemy that isn't immune to anything but elemental magic, giving Nalili the upgraded armor and a mammoth shield is something I am unsure anyone but me does. I appreciate Tertia as a more compelling take on the unfathomably ancient character. It contrasts with how in Warcraft Tyrande, Malfurion, Maiev, and Illidan are all supposed to be 10,000 years old but that barely effects their characters at all besides making them all, except Illidan, leaders of institutions that have somehow persisted with little change for that long. Tertia's weariness and terseness in the initial dialogue is both funny and sad. The interaction with Neranda was great, really gave a sense of why she felt compelled to find solitude. Her ridiculing Simon's benevolence and the patterns of Incubus Kings was hysterical, some of the lines in particular "all the horrors of motherhood" really didn't see that coming. Her design is nice, the asymmetry of her dress and ornamentation along her arms is interesting, and the scene was good though I'm not a tit guy so more than anything I hope we get different scenes with her. Her explanations at the end were very interesting, how many times there have been unified holders, alliances, and benevolent tyrants and they all come to nought. It again hammers home why she would be apathetic after being unable to fundamentally effect such an ancient and repetitive history. The deepwilds music is the perfect track for this, makes sense that a goddess of the wild would eventually want to find an end just as all nature does, and that Tertia as a manifestation of the earth wouldn't.
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sierralee - 24 Jan 20 16:12
Thanks for all your feedback! I wasn't sure what people would think of Tertia, so I'm glad that the response has been positive. ^-^
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User #6214130 - 18 Jan 20 09:40
Out of curiosity, what does the second spider-nerf entail?
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sierralee - 18 Jan 20 14:00
Reduced damage output and nearly eliminated debuff resistance.
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User #15235866 - 19 Jan 20 01:54
Was a Shining Sword drop added in 48.2, or did I just fail to see it in 48.0? I wasn't going to go back and fight the nerfed spiders, but, you know, Shining Swords are shiny.
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sierralee - 19 Jan 20 02:25
Added.
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User #5097687 - 20 Jan 20 14:08
Adding a Shining Sword without mentioning it in the changelog? Shifty. :P Oh well, back into the spider mines, I guess...
January 12 Update 2020-01-12T20:06:02+00:00

I'm pleased that players liked the first update of the year, especially the plot revelations. ^-^ The optional fights seem to need some tuning, but I hope we'll move toward a smooth public release.

I'm on top of bug reports, but not sure when I'll put out version 0.48.1. Maybe later in the day, after I've fiddled with the spiders some more.

The next update will be your first open world one of Chapter 5 and it's... just going to be a broad one. Areas that were locked off will open again, events unchanged through Chapter 4 will update, there will be some more consequences of player decisions, etc. Add on top of that some changes that can be triggered based on player variables.

But the thing is, there's nothing else I intend to focus on. We prototyped some new stuff for DStP, but the rest is delegated to others. I want to work more on OEA, but not right now. I've finished my major writing project and the releases aren't imminent. So I don't know exactly how long this update will take, but it will be occupying almost all my time over the coming weeks.

One other thing is happening meanwhile, the release of the Street Cultivation audiobook:

https://www.audible.com/pd/Street-Cultivation-Audiobook/1541438299

Unfortunately, it has some early low reviews from people who didn't finish, which is always frustrating. If anyone is an Audible user and wants to vote on the reviews they feel are best, please do. The good news is that going through a publisher, there's no way I can lose any money, even if this harms sales.

Anyway, expect the normal cycle of .1 and public releases!

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Comments (19)
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User #4340238 - 13 Jan 20 22:07
Just played 48.1, and those spiders were ludicrous. They made the Stineford House of Horrors look like Candyland. Their damage output is horrifying. On the plot note: Our new friend is...interesting. Seeing someone so outwardly calm suddenly act like that is pure whiplash, and kind of weird - though it works, even if it makes me cringe since everything about what she's mocking is cringeworthy. Still playing through, but first impressions.
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User #4340238 - 13 Jan 20 22:16
Also: Her artwork is jarring, but it fits since she's from so many eras prior she gives the word 'ancient' a hell of a workout.
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User #6214130 - 13 Jan 20 14:52
Sweet! Glad to hear that the new update is already in focus. Honestly, this is one of the updates i'm looking forward to the most, in the history of TLS, simply because of how it will show the entirity of Arclent for the first time in chapter 5. I loved the change to "open-world" in the beginning of Chapter 4. I'm not wrong to assume Chapter 5 will be similar in that respect?
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sierralee - 13 Jan 20 15:54
Somewhat, yes. There will be a very similar open world segment and later an "endgame" open world with more quests in preparation for the final section.
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User #6214130 - 13 Jan 20 16:02
Sweet. Well, good luck with your work then, Sierra. Looking forward to the not-so-distant future.
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User #3076718 - 17 Jan 20 06:12
SL, you might want to check your PMs on LOK if you have not already. Musical74, a regular over there wrote a fanfic for Antarion trying to score with Vera and her group. No idea how his writing is, but it sounds like it should be an interesting read.
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sierralee - 17 Jan 20 23:03
I will take a look when I get a bit of time!
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User #664110 - 18 Jan 20 08:44
Is it the same fanfic that some anon posted on the wiki forum today? https://thelastsovereign.fandom.com/wiki/Thread:17373
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User #3339263 - 13 Jan 20 03:35
Yeah the spiders were too strong I barely beat some of them by by having Vhala use defensive rain to bring their attack and agility down and having aka to slow down the strongest one first. But I couldn't see any other way to beat them, sure they are beatable but I don't think there should be only 1 good way to beat them.
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User #8176682 - 14 Jan 20 13:07
Sounds like the spiders are still too strong. Apart from making it so disrupt doesn't work on them anymore did you weaken the spiders at all?
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sierralee - 14 Jan 20 15:22
They're slower and use their strongest techniques less often.
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User #6214130 - 14 Jan 20 22:41
It is undoubtedly still the hardest optional encounter in the game, making Spider House, Devil's Pass Dungeon, War Vault Harbor and Incubus King Ruins all look like the Kiddie Pool by comparison... But it's at least possible to make it through with a higher focus on strategy than luck now, with less automatic party-wipeouts, so i'll take it. Still not sure if it's SUPPOSED to be the hardest in the game, but that's where it's at. This is 10% luck, 20% skill, 15% resetting after getting the whole party killed, 5% pleasure, 50% pain and 100% getting the hell out to the next part of the game
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User #3612110 - 13 Jan 20 12:26
I had to switch out my normal party of Simon, Aka, Robin, & Carina for Simon, Hilstara, Vhala, & Carina. With that formation was able to beat all but the last spider group, the one with the skittering nightmare. Invariably at least 2 party members go down on the first turn.
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User #2504558 - 12 Jan 20 20:25
Audible user here. I'll give it a listen, vote, and leave a review!
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sierralee - 12 Jan 20 21:30
Much appreciated!
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User #15235866 - 15 Jan 20 02:33
I enjoyed the challenge and have no problem needing multiple attempts to beat it, but I think Dank Potatoes has it right - if this isn't supposed to be the hardest fight (to date), then it's too hard. If it is, great.
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sierralee - 16 Jan 20 17:07
I've been replaying this myself and I think it's time to admit that sometimes my own experience with a boss isn't an accurate benchmark. It will be changed in the next version.
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User #16888332 - 15 Jan 20 01:12
48.1 cant pass the last spider fight at all. At level 74-76 it one shots two or three party members. Update: Yep finaly got lucky and killed the weakest spider before Shadow Web killed all 4 party members, even Hils with mammoth armor. Hope I'm not missing any good items cause I have to skip this one.
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sierralee - 16 Jan 20 17:06
It will be possible to complete it later for little cost, but in any case it will be easier in version 0.48.2.
TLS 0.48.0 Released! 2020-01-10T23:24:03+00:00

Update time! New version link will soon be below.


Version 0.48.1: https://mega.nz/#!jhVXBIAb!Buvc5oNYZqq-lVPB53CsieM-arUMYQnf3uCulP4RIJ4


TLS 0.48.0

- New section covering Eustrin and more.

- One new scene.

TLS 0.48.1

- Assorted typos and minor bugfixes.

- Tweaks to the optional enemies. Mostly nerfs, but the easiest method of cheesing them is now gone.


So... I feel like this update has some good content, and I've spent a decent amount of time testing, but I also think that the chance that I screwed something up during my final changes is higher than average. I should have done another run through the whole thing, but I'm burned out due to a number of factors. I'm afraid that a link between maps will have broken or a scene route is blocked or something. This might be one to wait on if you only want to play once.

(Edit from the future: That paragraph appears to be a false alarm on my part. People are finishing the update just fine.)

Having said that, I hope people enjoy this one! I look forward to everyone's thoughts about some of the revelations, which will hopefully include a few you didn't expect. There's also an optional combat challenge that I'm afraid may be too easy, so I welcome feedback there.

That is all for now. If you've sent me messages about any other subjects, I hope to get to them during the bugfixing period, but please be patient as I work on everything.

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Comments (92)
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User #2909283 - 11 Jan 20 03:50
Well, the trip to Eustrin didn't go quite the way I expected (I was expecting the Eustrin Independence to overshadow Tower shenanigans) but it was definitely fun. Except that optional boss. Fuck that thing's chain attacks. If it wasn't for the above mentioned Disrupt combo I'd probably still be banging my head on it. I will say the enhanced enemies in that area are tough, but barely manageable. Our special guest's apathy and mocking was amusing to say the least. Hopefully she'll be less... vague.... as things progress. Although I wouldn't be opposed to her getting to turn it on the Lustlord at some point. The tantrum alone would be glorious! Oh, don't know if it's an oversight or not, but she's not on the harem screen. Looking forward to more scenes with her in general. After all, Yarra still needs to get some peeping in!
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 04:11
Glad you enjoyed some of the surprises. If you want Eustrin politics, that will be coming before too long now. The special guest will obviously never be Qum, but she'll defrost a bit as she interacts more with people again.
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User #2909283 - 11 Jan 20 04:17
So Titfucking Tips 2.0 is on the the table when Wendis gets her body? Btw I loved Riala's contribution to mocking the dwarven cum expert. It was so close to what I described I can't tell if I just randomly hit the mark or if you used my spitballing to your advantage.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 04:45
It was a good prediction. ^-^
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User #6214130 - 11 Jan 20 09:16
Some shots can be very obvious... But those shots can be so good that they are worth taking anyway. I expected continued mockery of the local Dwarf Cum expert, and the update delivered.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 13:51
I know what you mean Taium I'd also like that child entity in our tower to stop speaking in riddles as well. It's about time to get real answers.
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User #664110 - 11 Jan 20 23:24
Ah yes, it might be interesting to get Tertia's take on the little not girl. Then again, it might kill her.
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User #178986 - 11 Jan 20 02:16
Ok, finished my update and felt it went pretty well. I am going to say this that I disagree that the spiders should be made easier. It felt like they were a threat that was imposed by the person that I believe is dead now. Speaking of, the update made it feel like he was possibly alive. However, it felt like I should have been able to do more in Eustin to raise the political and economical conditions of it, but nothing could happen as far as I could see. Anyone else feel like the mage actually has a minor shard that he is hiding from Simon.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 02:30
Sorry, but I'm actually unclear on which person you're indirectly alluding to. Appreciate your feedback, though! Very soon it will be possible to create a "Final Eustrin" state similar to what you could do with Yhilin. Possibly next update if I include it with the open world. In any case, many past variables assisting Eustrin will come into play then.
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User #178986 - 11 Jan 20 15:12
referring to Tanukuk, guy without a face from the Ivala reveal at the end of chapter 4. I thought he died there.
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 21:35
Why?
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User #178986 - 11 Jan 20 22:03
Because the way Ivala phrased it, gathered she would alert her captor and keep him there. The captor would kill him as Ivala stated since he was afraid of death. Besides doubt anyone would let him live if next to a valuable prisoner
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 23:25
Might be interesting to see how many other folks got that notion.
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User #4787752 - 12 Jan 20 18:48
I thought him being dead was possible as well, though wasn't sure. I also wonder if perhaps he was captured as well and now just like with the crystal of Ivala, someone is harnessing his magic. Be a fucking powerful move to. Use Ivala for all your good acts, Use Tanukuk as a cover for all evil acts.
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User #3005898 - 11 Jan 20 01:18
In my view...not at all too easy.
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User #15235866 - 11 Jan 20 07:59
Great update, thank you SL! A couple typos: When Neranda is with the group outside Relondo's room: "Hmm. I know at least one accepted Relondo’s offer because she wanted a child… I will speak to them about this.n" When Wendis first comes on the scene: "My good news may not equal finding a long-long goddess, but I do have some:" (long-lost? long-dead?) Oy, sorry, I have a note that there's a line "There was only a single diety" but now I can't find the context. Sorry, less helpful. And not a typo, but a question. When speaking outside of Agnan’s room, Neranda says, “I know you defeated the new Incubus King in Aram as quickly as you could…” and Simon responds, “The political situation was delicate and the Church believed they could contain him…” Is the Incubus Emperor the "new Incubus King?" Or was there a minor one in Aram that we killed in between chapters 4 and 5, and this alludes to events we didn't witness?
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User #178986 - 11 Jan 20 15:21
I would say that it was a minor one. If you remember from the visit to Stineford, there was a mention with Sierra about the hunt of Incubus Kings happening. We also now that the success of the party is leading others to not take them as seriously.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 15:26
Glad you liked the update! I believe I have your first two typos fixed; long-long is perhaps my funniest mistake in recent memory. XD The lines outside of Agnan's room refer to another minor Incubus King defeated in between chapters.
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User #2991461 - 11 Jan 20 15:46
A possible way to refer to this is a note in one of the offices, listing potential / handled shards. "Shard in Zintara - Winged One. Retrieved, no casualties. Shard in Knife- human soldier. Retrieved, 10 orc soldiers killed, all enemies. Shard in Ard-Yhinii - False alarm (succubus). Shard in Aram - Retrieved, no casualties. Personal attention." Something that shows made-up off screen progress regarding the retrieval of the shards.
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User #8195103 - 12 Jan 20 06:53
I took that as implied, but I'm wondering, does Simon see any in-game mechanical effect from taking in these shards? I tend to lose track while actually playing the game.
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sierralee - 12 Jan 20 14:37
Earlier shards had a mechanical benefit, but now (lore-wise) he has too many for small ones to have an impact.
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 00:50
Minor Spoilery Question: How far back did Neranda Learn that DK = Simon? I don't recall the conversation ever happening previously.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 01:13
Honest answer: I don't recall either.
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 01:33
Must have been one HELL of a letter.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 01:34
Are you serious? I never saw any conversation that indicated that Neranda learned Simon is the doom king
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 02:32
Riala, addressing Neranda: "Not exactly. As an Incubus King, Simon's potency is infinite... given a certain definition of infinite. But that only gets you so far." Granted it doesn't say he is the Doom King, but there ain't a whole lotta point maintaining the fiction of the Doom King when you ID Simon as an Incubus King.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 03:16
Must be an oversight then
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 18:14
I mean since Neranda and Wendis 'meet' at the tower section and that is a WAY bigger secret I think, I wouldn't really be taken aback if Simon and Neranda told each other at some point. Through revealing that info in letters does sound a little implausible. Perhaps she had her suspicions but only confirmed it in person now?
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User #2540339 - 11 Jan 20 19:10
I can't imagine Simon ever committing that kind of information to a paper letter, no matter how securely it was sent. Perhaps only obliquely in a way that Neranda can make assumptions. It'd be a nice touch if Neranda confirmed those suspicions explicitly now that they can talk face to face, since that would help to cement the idea that they have been in indirect contact despite the lockdown of Eustrin.
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User #8910657 - 12 Jan 20 14:50
I don't think Simon being an IK is something that frays the Doom King fiction. It's rather well known among nation leaders and apparently the church that Simon is a powerful commander of the king, and if he had power on loan, I don't think anyone would be surprised. I'm fairly sure this was even directly implied or stated at points.
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User #5097687 - 13 Jan 20 00:13
FWIW, I find the assumption that one Incubus King would be working under another rather ridiculous, as well from our own perspective as from in-game characters' POV. And the term Incubus King is kinda trademarked, getting granted power from one doesn't let you bear the title yourself. So yeah, this is a revelation that should be acknowledged more in the conversation with Neranda imho.
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User #5029794 - 11 Jan 20 03:37
This was a fun update! I definitely wasn't expecting to run into...said person, at least not right up until I ran into the final barrier. Neat revelations abound and now we're all set to dive into chapter 5! Should be interesting. :) I spotted some map related shenanigans so here's a link to the snapshots I took: https://imgur.com/a/ZF5z9fw Also, on a completely random side note I loved the Dwarven pastries gone stale interaction (yay realism!)...but the ones in the Tower are fine I guess? (Conceptually fresh! Now there's an idea!) Lol.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 04:09
Glad to hear you completed and enjoyed the update! I believe I have your map reports fixed, thanks. The pastries in the Tower are indeed the metaphysical concept of pastries.
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 02:37
Uhhh I think the spiders might have fryed my brain. Where the heck do I need to go in the second tower visit after finding the third barrier? Rialia says we need to go deeper but I keep just walking in circles.
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 02:38
Found the boulder!
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 03:01
Love it how we explain things to captain palina. Honestly Aram would stand no chance if it tried to do something that stupid
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 00:04
Ah the ol game of trying to remember which save is for which route. And I'm not sure if it's a starting in the 'end room' bug, but didn't get a full heal inbetween updates.
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User #664110 - 11 Jan 20 00:18
Look at this man not using separate folders for his routes. Brain of wax, I tell ya.
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User #6214130 - 11 Jan 20 00:31
There wasn't a full heal before the Erosian Crisis either, as far as i recall. Guess that's not always an option
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 01:13
You should be able to heal before any combat in this case, but I'll add a full heal since it's logical that the party would have rested.
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User #4505856 - 11 Jan 20 08:39
The nightmare spiders were tricky. Ultimately, I was forced to win the final battle against them through attrition; Simon, Hilstara, Vhala, and Carina were my winning combination. Vhala's covering file and Carina's secondary revival were necessary just to survive the welcome. I am a fan of our special guest. I enjoyed her coldness, actually; aloof is a good look on her. I hope to see more of her depth as she rediscovers her long memory of regrets and traumas. And it has made me only more curious, of course, about the other guest stars to come... ...particularly our headliner...
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 15:29
I'm glad people have responded well to the new character. I've been wanting to introduce her to the story for quite some time, as she adds what I hope will be a welcome new dynamic.
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User #3181734 - 11 Jan 20 05:58
Yay, I was looking forward to this! This update was really interesting, and provides a lot of new possibilities to think about. I don't know when Neranda was let in on the mostly closely guarded state secret of the DK's domain, but it would make sense that Simon would have brought her into the loop at some point since they have been working together very closely. Are there any other leaders that have been brought into the fold off screen? Elleani? Tyna or Biyue? Since prior to this we only had one section with Neranda present and that was stiffly formal, I didn't truly understand how much of a goddamn powerhouse she was until she punched a tower entity on her first visit. I think our new gues will turn out very interesting, though it is unfortunate that Simon has to take the expedient path despite the personal cost. He hasn't been pressured to make a major moral compromise this hard since recruiting Trin! Given her demeanor and age, I'm thinking about past cryptic lines and once again realizing that this may have been foreshadowed way longer than I thought. I'm glad we got to briefly return to the Deepwilds and learn a bit more. I'm also very interested in the revelation about the Lustlord. I doubt that will have much practical relevance but I'm sure it would throw him into a fit. The Dwaregasts were fuckin' hard please don't make them harder, at least not the miniboss. The Lonely Path felt like a good map to me. Not complex, but its sheer size gave it its own sense of unease and barrenness (not to mention constant worry that I was accidentally going the right way instead of exploring all optional paths first). I can't wait to start seeing divine politics get dragged down to a secular level as Simon and Co. start allying with and opposing them as they try to affect meaningful and imminent change. Also, I hope we get to see Orcent and our new guest have a conversation, not to mention Orcent and Neranda. You know what, just everybuddy should want to be buds with Orcent. Actually, I really would like to see a conversation take place between Orcent and Vhala. They are two very thoughtful companions who decided to join Simon without the "benefits package" the others get and have both undergone significant soul alteration. I bet they would have much to talk about. Is the inevitable Eustrin Final State going to be the end of the major political conflict with Aram, or is Aram as we know it going to go through some death throes anytime soon? I'm just noticing that we are playing Kingmaker in basically every nation worldwide except Aram, and those controlled by hostile Tower entities. Anyway, very good update and I am looking forward to further developments. I'm definitely curious if Ginasta is gonna pull a Kalant or double down and try to destroy metaphysics as a whole. I hope you are doing well!
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 15:23
Thank you for your detailed feedback! I always appreciate reading people's thoughts. ^-^ Elleani suspects, Tyna and Biyue have little idea. I'm glad you liked the Lonely Path dungeon. I wanted it to feel narrow and isolated, but that's a hard theme to build a dungeon off of. An Orcent/Vhala conversation is actually on my big list of things I want to do eventually, I just haven't gotten to it.
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User #5341776 - 12 Jan 20 03:36
Hope you find your rug, man.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 00:01
Loving the update so far. You are doing a good job creating new enemies for new sections of the tower, such as the deep wilds shrine and this new place
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 01:11
Glad you're liking it so far!
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 00:55
Come on SL, you tellin me Simon's Dominate skill isn't super effective against the Spider Matriarchs? What is he spiderphobic?
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 01:15
Simon would never. Those matriarchs are in committed relationships.
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User #445068 - 11 Jan 20 05:38
Disruption turns the spiders into punching bags, which is so far removed from fighting them without disruption that it feels almost like cheating. At the same time fighting the boss normally is just an RNG nightmare where the boss can just randomly delete your party no matter how far you got.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 14:22
Thanks for the feedback! The Disruption bug will be fixed, but tuning the fights will be an ongoing process.
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User #3011189 - 11 Jan 20 05:12
WOW... that was certainly unexpected. Loved the explanation and new character seem like it will be a lot of fun to have around. Just one very, very minor thing... in your message we got in waiting room you said that you started "2019 with a bang". I assume that should have been 2020...
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 05:24
Glad you liked it! And whoops, I had the end of the year on my mind when I wrote that...
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User #6214130 - 11 Jan 20 09:26
Man i was glad to find out that TLS actually takes place in the same universe as Wheel of Time! "The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again" On a sidenote, i'm beginning to suspect that you are setting the experience gain from fighting up so that we might end the game, exactly at level 99 or 100, Sierra. That would be so OCD satisfying.
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User #6214130 - 11 Jan 20 09:35
Those fucking spiders man, though... Look Sierra, i get that the game might get to easy for experienced players at times. But remember, that those of us who respond first to new updates are mainly the superfans. Those who have likely played through the game multiple times, run very optimized games, know not to skip fights and know many enemy weaknesses simply by memory. If we struggle against the spiders, then i can't even begin to imagine how the fight must look to the casual consumer, who is on his first walkthrough, with a Simon who is level 71, and who hasn't bought all the best gear from the stores. I was hoping that patreon feedback would urge you to nerf the fight, not make it harder by removing Disrupt from the equation. As far as i can tell, this leaves Simon/Carina/Hilstara/Vhala as nearly the only viable party, and only by making the fight a drawn out slugfest, where Simon's sole role is spamming Support Servants. That's... not fun. I felt clever when i figured out the purpose of Disrupt, that was gratifying.
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User #6214130 - 11 Jan 20 09:38
And if the idea is that it's possible to return to this area later, and finish off the Boss, then i would urge you to make it really clear in the dialogue. The first 50 hours teaches us that clearing out areas of enemies is the way to go. If it's not necessary here, i think the game should make it clear
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User #8910657 - 11 Jan 20 15:01
I had by far the easiest time with Simon / Vhala / Carina / Riala, which actually tracks pretty cleanly with what I'd expect. Just spamming heals, buffs, debuffs, and letting Riala do the work knocked the fight out in 2 tries I think. Spiders are weak to fire. That said, yeah, it's rough to go back to getting ruined until you find the team comp you want. I might play it again just to see what else works.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 15:32
Making EXP (and the hard limit on total encounters) line up right is going to be tricky. I have my eye on it, but I'd have to be more OCD than I am to have it perfectly planned. Cross your fingers. I might yet nerf the spiders, but it won't be via Disrupt. I don't think that it's perfectly balanced, but I've been pleased to see people managing it with parties other than the ones I tested.
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User #8195103 - 12 Jan 20 06:59
And here I was wondering if you were going to end up using a script to let the characters break the engine's native level cap, given how the rate of level-ups seems to have accelerated with the introduction of the Tower. Considering they're more or less on their way to becoming deities, such arbitrary limits might be beneath them anyway.
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sierralee - 12 Jan 20 14:38
If the numbers come out wrong, I will use a script to break the native cap, though I actually had something else in mind for that.
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User #7572638 - 11 Jan 20 02:08
Excuse me for one second whilst I give my thoughts on Dwarfgest nightmare spiders *incoherent rambling*. That said Robin Qum disrupt+Hilstera made work of them. In terms of balancing them for underleveled players they're way out of their league but they are after all optional. Also I couldn't help feel it was jarring when you got to spoiler character, her art feels so out of place compared to all the other characters, some nice reveals in the end though.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 02:28
Thanks for the feedback!
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User #2909283 - 11 Jan 20 02:31
Holy shit man, that combo on the spider boss is unreal. It can't do ANYTHING. You're the MVP of this release imo.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 02:36
That is 100% an oversight, by the way. All nightmare spiders will be immune to Disrupt as of the next version.
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User #5341776 - 11 Jan 20 04:13
:0
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User #664110 - 11 Jan 20 04:49
All of them? :/
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 05:24
Yes, I think so. Disabling one of only a few enemies would essentially be a win condition, invalidating most other party setups. If I made them partially vulnerable, it would only increase the amount of RNG. You'll notice that the normal Dwaregasts are actually stronger in this respect.
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 01:11
"Afraid an optional challenge might be too easy." Yeah, would not...be to afraid of that. That last boss fight is near impossible.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 01:15
I will take that as a sign of approval! It will be possible to return to this one later.
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 01:22
Might want to tone down that skittering spider just a tad, it's ability to one shot 1-2 party members a turn is a bit overwhelming. Though perhaps there's just a strategy I'm just not seeing.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 01:38
I got through it using vhala aka and robin for the spiders but make no mistake it was very tough, I was using Simon's support servant skill so much. Aka's debilitating assault. But yes more than just the difficulty the main spider boss nearly oneshoots to the point that she keeps killing all the other party members except simon and he's stuck using support servants. Another thing is that some of the enemies get to attack multiple times which is unacceptable.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 01:41
The challenge also took a lot of huge health and mana potions.
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User #3005898 - 11 Jan 20 01:48
Yeah, I've got down to 1 a couple of times, but then I get two of the 'hit everyone' or 'do 4 random attacks' in a row and goodbye.
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 01:51
Going to have to call it for now at attempt 20 to see what else this update has! You win this round spiders but I'll be back!
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 02:02
Make no mistake I got past the challenge but it does need to be toned down made easier
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 02:27
Well, I'm glad something made people retry multiple strategies for once, but I'll consider toning it down in later versions. I definitely don't recommend anyone focus too much on it - it's really side content compared to the main update.
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 03:02
Like Orilise said Sierra Lee. "If a thing is worth doing, it's worth doing obsessively"
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User #4787752 - 11 Jan 20 03:07
I think the solution might be to take away the posse of the final skittering nightmare. Even if you are doing well, odds are just to damn high you'll get hit by a double or triple drawfkiller that can 1 hit ko any party member. Not to mention if you aren't keeping your party at mega full health odds are any of the repeated attacks will take down 2-3 members as well.
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User #664110 - 11 Jan 20 06:24
Wait, the spider cave is optional?
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User #9140699 - 11 Jan 20 08:23
Was a crazy fight. Had to whittle them down using a pure survival strategy. Simon, Vhala, Hilstara and Carina all spamming heals and buffs/debuffs while chipping when I could. Also status immune items. It is definitely a time to fear spiders again.
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User #3275694 - 11 Jan 20 12:06
Far as I understand it, after finding the artifact in the spider cave extra spiders spawn which are optional to kill? Edit: I believe one of the party members makes a comment to this effect
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User #2991461 - 11 Jan 20 13:47
It iS very difficult, though I managed to get through it (eventually). One thing Sierre might want to add is the ability to RUN from fights here - if we can come back, and actually clearing spiders isn't a priority, if retreating is an option, let them retreat.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 14:20
Yeah, everything is optional after you find the artifact. I tried to make the dialogue say this clearly, but may need to rewrite. Allowing the party to escape from the fights is a reasonable request.
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User #2540339 - 11 Jan 20 18:20
One suggestion that could make this fight less ridiculous: if possible, restrict Dwarfkiller so that it doesn't fire on the first turn. That would give players a chance to raise some defences to guard against instant one-hit kills. It was pretty tedious having to replay over and over, waiting for the RNG to kill people in the right order for me to be able to recover. For reference, I settled on Vhala (for debuffs), Carina (for buffs, heals, and reviving), and Robin (for heals and fire lances). The Skittering Nightmare was able to one-hit kill anyone in the first round, but was manageable with buffs/debuffs applied. I just tried to take out the others as fast as possible while staying alive, then pounded on the boss while trying to keep everyone at high health to avoid its big AOE attack knocking out both healers.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 19:18
Hmm, making their first round on average weaker would be a subtle nerf. I like the idea.
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User #664110 - 11 Jan 20 23:21
I didn't think the spider cave was optional. As I understood it, the purpose of the spider cave was to get an artifact for Tower delving purposes, then became "actually clear the spiders so Tanurak doesn't catch on to our true goal". That said, I suppose the ability to leave whenever we want to heal undermines my interpretation a bit. To be clear, I am not recommending you remove the ability to leave and heal. >I will take that as a sign of approval! It will be possible to return to this one later. Oh no, I'm not falling for that. We all know how that went with Devil's Pass.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 23:56
Ah, useful to know your thought process. I was actually just reviewing the text and feeling like I signaled the ability to leave, but I understand what you're saying about the goal shifting. I actually included those lines to try to justify why dealing with it now would be potentially beneficial. >To be clear, I am not recommending you remove the ability to leave and heal. No healing for the entire Eustrin section, you say? Done!
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User #8176682 - 11 Jan 20 01:41
You were right Sierra this update had a lot of revelations that I wont reveal but they answered a great deal of questions.
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User #9140699 - 11 Jan 20 08:29
A great update. Gonna sleep on it a bit before I comment more, but it scratches that TLS itch I've had for awhile. Our special guest is a great treat. I wonder how the odd little girl in the tower base will react to her.
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sierralee - 11 Jan 20 15:26
Glad you enjoyed it!
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User #9140699 - 11 Jan 20 18:51
Like i said last night, it was a good update. I found a few locations where we can get out of bounds in the new tower section but I think others pointed them out above. The spiders were sufficiently difficult. I would argue against nerfing them as they're supposed to be a challenge but they are not impossible to deal with. I would argue for adding a dialogue option reminding the player it is optional before starting the fight, or letting the player escape on a loss. I do feel that their speed may be too high, their ability to attack before one can react limits who one can bring to the fight. I often had 1-2 dead members before I could react if I tried to use squishy party members and could not find a strategy other than Simon, Hilstara, Vhala and Carina. The new friend is an interesting take on things. She knows a little but conveniently doesn't know enough to tell us everything. Her outlook makes sense based on where she is coming from and it was neat to see Neranda get her to actually do something. The relationship between Kings and Godesses feels ominous, Simon needs to be careful with those who have the other shards. I do wonder what happens to the Kings that get "sealed", they obviously no longer have shards but I where does the king himself go? Poor Mithyn, her history was hinted at but having it laid out is kinda sad. Neranda is in a rough position. Glad to see that we can aid her somewhat. I wonder how bad it would be if one didn't throw everything at Eustrin during Gwanfall. Aram's positon seems untenable on my play-through, they're surrounded buy nations Simon controls and their best trading partners are secretly being influenced by Simon as well. They're isolated politically, militarily and economically.
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User #9140699 - 11 Jan 20 18:55
Theory Time: The Shard in the deepwilds belonged to Antiala. Tower enemies are animal themed and the degree of worship she gets would account for the vibrant nature of her tower area. She likely existed at some point in the past, but passed on. The statues of her in the IK Tomb hint she is not a new phenomenon but the recent resurgence and expansion of the Divine Claw could have been due to the King using the construct to emulate her. The way Tertia speaks of the departed goddess also fits.
2019 in Review 2020-01-05T20:13:45+00:00

Time for another yearly review, looking back on what was done and forward to what comes next. Overall, 2019 was a year of experimentation for me. Some time was wasted on dead ends, and I regret that, but overall I felt the year was very helpful for me.


Reflections

TLS Progress: Last year we finally wrapped up the Ivalan synod, visited Stenai, fought the Thenoursan War, and launched the final chapter with the return to Stineford. I had hoped to be a little further along in the fifth chapter by this date, but I feel I made the decisions necessary to keep the quality at the level I want.

TLS on Steam: I finally put TLS up on Steam and it's been good for the game, with a daily stream of new people trying it out. It's become my more reviewed game, which I hope will help when it leaves Early Access.

Side Projects: This was one of my failures in 2019 - I wanted to get a major side project off my plate so that my energy would be less spread out. That didn't happen. However, patrons got to play Once Ever After and I've completed the majority of the creative work. The demo of Don't Save the Princess was about as well rated as my previous demos, but the work on that will likely keep extending as I wait on others.

Novels: One discovery of last year is that writing novels can be very lucrative. If I was doing nothing else, I could put out a couple medium-quality novels a month and bury myself in money, but fortunately thanks to all of you I can follow my creative muse. In 2019 I finished the New Game Minus trilogy and I don't have plans to return to it.

Financial Goals: Stability has always been my goal, but the various ban waves over the years led me to especially seek it. I'm now in a position where I can promise you that I can finish TLS so long as I am of sound mind and body. There is no scenario where Patron/Valve/Amazon decides to turn against NSFW content and my work just ends. Longer term, I think I can also guarantee that there won't be a scenario thirty years down the road where you have a "Remember [creator] from [beloved old project]? Donate to stop them from becoming homeless" situation. I can create for the rest of my life, so if I ask for money, it should be so you can be part of something cool I'm doing. ^-^

Post-TLS Thoughts: I devoted a meaningful chunk of 2019 to polling patrons and sharing thoughts about what project will replace TLS. Though I received some valuable data, unfortunately I don't feel I have any clear answer to some of my core questions. I'd really like to have a long time to reflect on the next project before it begins, so I hope 2020 will lead to updates in this regard.


Projects for 2020

TLS: This will continue to be my primary focus, with updates starting next weekend. This year will include some major updates and answers to questions that have been raised since the beginning. It's a bit difficult to predict exactly where the game will be by the end of the year, but I'm hopeful that you'll all enjoy what I have in store.

The Artwork Update: Annikath has finished 16 CGs, but more are needed for the big artwork update. This will definitely take up a chunk of time when it occurs, but I hope that it will draw a new audience to the game.

Novels: Two books of Street Cultivation are finished and there will be at minimum a third. Honestly, the continuation of this series will be determined primarily by whether it's a net positive or net negative to my energy and creativity levels. The one book series I'm committing to long term is The Brightest Shadow; if that launch goes poorly, my productivity may take a hit, but I've worked ahead on the sequel, so there should be no major time drain on other work this year.

Side Projects: I think that OEA and DStP will be mostly on the back burner, but patrons should get a chance to play more of both. It's remotely possible that one of these will get a release, dependent on how quickly collaborators work.


Overall, 2020 should be less scattered than 2019, which is a positive change. I hope to deliver a solid amount of content this year, hopefully capping off some other side projects. Hopefully you look forward to coming along with me!

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Comments (17)
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User #6214130 - 5 Jan 20 21:39
Glad to hear you be so optimistic. It's contagious. Looking forward to see what 2019 can do for you and TLS. It may sound a bit "dad-like", but you really have come so far since i started paying attention to this patreon and the game.
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sierralee - 5 Jan 20 23:31
Thank you, glad to have you with me!
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User #6214130 - 6 Jan 20 16:08
Wasn't the next update supposed to be free-roam? Also, isn't it a bit dick-ish to share something that was presumably told in confidence?
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User #2909283 - 5 Jan 20 20:48
Hmm... very interesting. Glad to see you're feeling positive. Wait.... -_- "with updates starting next weekend" Yay! Time to see Robin snark that Aramite mage into oblivion! Snarky Robin is best Robin.
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sierralee - 5 Jan 20 23:31
Yes, it's finally time to visit that mage again, though not the last.
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User #4089879 - 6 Jan 20 00:08
Man, I need to get back into TLS. I stalled out at the Synod; due to my investment choices it appears impossible to get the Succubi properly accepted, and the harem all seems pissed about it. I've had a few of the older girls (e.g. Aka) in the high 90s for forever and it seems like I just cannot gain any relationship points for them, so actually moving backwards with some was so frustrating I just kept replaying the synod to try to get a better outcome and then quit in frustration. Guess I should just accept that I am not going to unlock some content any time soon and move on, as it seems like I am missing out on some good new stuff.
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User #2909283 - 6 Jan 20 00:23
Have you tried doing a fresh save? A lot of the earlier content may be different from when your current save went through it. Shouldn't take too long to catch back up in a better position. Even if you go overboard and have backup saves every major decision like I did.
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User #2909283 - 6 Jan 20 00:31
Won't lie, I'm kinda hoping when they meet up Riala looks to Robin and says something like "So this is the dwarf cum expert you mentioned?"
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User #8176682 - 6 Jan 20 02:16
Yes that was another brilliant example of Sierra's writing skills, I was laughing so hard for that scene when the group meets agnan for the first time.
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User #664110 - 5 Jan 20 22:03
Surprised there's no mention of Street Cultivation 1 in the 2019 part. I had the impression that it was more successful than the first NGM. As ever, I look forward to whatever you put out.
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sierralee - 5 Jan 20 23:33
It seems it got lost when I shuffled some of the paragraphs during the edit. Yes, Street Cultivation was far more successful than my previous books. >As ever, I look forward to whatever you put out. I look forward to your feedback and assistance!
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User #16543184 - 6 Jan 20 06:57
I picked up the Sierra Lee collection on a whim, played through the Crimson Grey games, Ouroboros, and I'm 40 hours into The Last Sovereign, and I am consistently impressed with your content. The first few had me intrigued through the ends of the experiences, but I was absolutely blown away by The Last Sovereign. Probably one of my absolute favorite RPGs now, and I'm eager to see what's next!
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User #8176682 - 6 Jan 20 14:33
How are Sierra's other games? I imagine that they would be great but truthfully I've only ever played The Last Sovereign.
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sierralee - 6 Jan 20 15:28
Hello! I'm glad to hear you've enjoyed my work and I'm happy to have you with us. ^-^
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User #14120479 - 6 Jan 20 07:22
I am glad I've joined up after being a lurk for quite a while. And yeah, I have to strongly agree with DankPotatoes, you've come a long way, it really shows in your work. *Raises a glass* to many more productive and enjoyable years! I am sure we'll see you open up your own game dev studio and put those AAAs to shame.
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User #8176682 - 6 Jan 20 17:06
Yes I posted when the eustrin update would be released after she said this weekend. And I may be completely wrong about the update after this so I really dont see what the problem is, but fine i wont make this mistake again
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User #8176682 - 6 Jan 20 01:44
December 29 Update
December 29 Updatemore_vert
2019-12-29T23:04:30+00:00
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December 29 Update 2019-12-29T23:04:30+00:00close

For the past two years, I've done darker reviews for my last update of the year, laying out negative issues in order to start the new year fresh. This year, I find that is no longer necessary. Please look forward to my yearly reflection and a TLS update in early January.

I am happily working away, but this is a time of rest. I hope most of you are able to spend time with those you care about and I wish strength for those carrying burdens at this time. For now, simply enjoy the above image and have a good holiday season. ^-^

-

That was what I originally intended to post, but someone pointed out that I'm eligible for a Stabby award, which is a non-trivial prize given by the r/fantasy subreddit. The thread and rules are available here:

https://old.reddit.com/r/Fantasy/comments/egy76w/2019_stabby_voting_thread/

However, please note that they have a very broad definition of brigading that could disqualify me. If you are a Reddit user who reads enough fantasy that you want to participate in the voting overall, please vote for the titles you think deserve awards.


Media (1)


seasonal_greetings2.png (1.9MiB)

Comments (16)
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User #664110 - 30 Dec 19 03:38
Hmm, I haven't read most of these titles. I wonder if just voting on Reddit posts and cover art for categories SL isn't in would look brigadesque. Think I can guess who pointed out the poll, though - fellow fan LOLtohru has a nominated post counting an author's tendency to use "shrug" in a work. This subreddit looks a bit toxic. :/ I hope any increased attention from there ends up positive. Who made the art? I like the watercolor sky.
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sierralee - 30 Dec 19 04:29
I'm not sure, but I suspect volume will be considered. If anybody is worried about that or doesn't have time, it's fine to ignore it. I'm not sure how many votes they will get total, but I suspect it will be a high number. The community is large and growing, so getting a Stabby would be useful for promotional purposes, but it won't make or break anything. I actually haven't looked through the poll, since it seems strange to vote in a contest you're part of, so I can't say about the watercolor sky.
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User #664110 - 30 Dec 19 04:41
Sorry, I meant the sky in the art on this here Patreon post.
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sierralee - 30 Dec 19 04:42
Oh, this was drawn by Annikath. Just a quick holiday sketch. ^-^
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User #10136374 - 30 Dec 19 06:05
Indeed twas I! Though I actually only did one of the nominations. SL is a bit popular over there so I hope she can win. If anybody wants to vote for my silly post that's nice too. :)
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User #664110 - 30 Dec 19 07:28
Oh hi, didn't realize you were a patron now. If someone else is nominating SL for things too I hope that's a good sign.
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User #6214130 - 30 Dec 19 08:41
I read the comment section of the stabby-thread, and it doesn't seem all that toxic to me. Just a bunch of fantasy nerds talking about their preffered books and scorning themselves for not reading enough, like so many others. Maybe it's worse in other threads, but i think they appear quite chill
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User #664110 - 31 Dec 19 12:14
Looking at the art again, I somehow get the impression that Altina's just very happy to be included.
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User #2909283 - 29 Dec 19 23:19
This piece of fanart is completely unrealistic. Yarra isn't even trying to reach for Simon's dick. And really, Qum with CLOTHES?!?!? Nice to look at though. See ya next time.
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sierralee - 29 Dec 19 23:33
Qum can be convinced to wear clothes if they are special outfits. She is very enthusiastic about them for a while but they eventually end up on the floor.
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User #2540339 - 29 Dec 19 23:53
I'm imagining that Yarra's Festive Boots give an Evasion bonus due to the way she keeps skipping about in them. Also, Qum presumably gets an SP generation bonus from her Festive Hat Of Jiggling, I mean, uh, Jingling.
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User #664110 - 30 Dec 19 03:38
Hey, Yarra is capable of whole minutes of restraint. Minutes!
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User #3302120 - 1 Jan 20 05:07
Happy New Year +/- A few hours
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sierralee - 1 Jan 20 05:52
You too! (And anybody else reading, regardless of the time.)
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User #14120479 - 30 Dec 19 04:13
Happy holidays! Stay creative and be happy. Its a magical time of the year, please let me share my favorite version of Schedrik with you guys. I am sure the tune will be familiar, although not many knows its origins :) Hope you like it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uKbK1CPwSs
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sierralee - 30 Dec 19 04:30
Happy holidays to you too! I'm not familiar with that version, but it's been pleasant to listen to for a few minutes here.
December 22 Update 2019-12-22T23:25:08+00:00

This weekend would have been the one where I would have tried to rush out a TLS update. I really appreciate everyone's patience in letting me have better work/life balance, as I feel better having cleared so much from my plate. $10 patrons just got a whole bundle of different things.

With those done (actually days past), I'm now focused almost entirely on TLS, hoping for an early 2020 update. The Eustrin update has some nice maps, tons of dialogue, and some misc progress. I hope it will be a good-sized update and it will definitely have some major reveals to kick off the year.

I keep wandering off and writing sex scenes ahead of time. A certain long-sidelined character is finally scheduled for more development, and focusing on her led me to write all her scenes. There are a couple others that have all their plot/affection scenes written way ahead of time as well. This is fine, though I wonder if it will eventually lead to updates almost without scene writing on my end.

Anyway, I will be working, but things will be quiet over the holidays. Next week I'll have a little picture that I hope you'll enjoy. ^-^

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Comments (13)
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User #8176682 - 22 Dec 19 23:48
Merry Christmas everyone
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User #4787752 - 23 Dec 19 12:07
"A certain long-sidelined character is finally scheduled for more development," YES! "and focusing on HER led me to write all her scenes." NO! All i want for Christmas is hard core gay sex between Mestan and Simon, and then maybe the Impaler, is that so much to ask!
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User #2540339 - 23 Dec 19 13:22
Why does Mestan get all the attention? What about the other male characters? Isn't Implevon due for some imp-lovin'? (disclaimer: the views expressed above are not representative of the author's opinions and are in fact entirely a setup for a crappy pun, for which an unreserved apology is offered)
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User #178986 - 22 Dec 19 23:30
Am looking forward to the update. Am glad that you have a good that you have a good work life balance
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User #485234 - 23 Dec 19 06:50
Oh, so we're finally getting Galvia into harem?
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User #3302120 - 23 Dec 19 05:30
Happy Holidays
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User #8176682 - 22 Dec 19 23:43
I'm glad you have steady work most patreons in my experience cant keep up with steady releases.
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User #7572638 - 22 Dec 19 23:29
Has the sexual tension between Simon and Mestan finally reached it's boiling point for him to reveal the ultimate secret that he's actually his long lost brother/father?
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sierralee - 22 Dec 19 23:58
Everyone knows that Mestan is actually Qum's long-lost twin. His full name is Mestan D'umpe.
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User #2909283 - 23 Dec 19 03:23
Neranda, Wynn, and Sarai disguising themselves as Simon by standing on each other's shoulders and wearing a trenchcoat when?
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sierralee - 23 Dec 19 03:44
The real question: how LONG has Simon been the three of them stacked in a trenchcoat?
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User #14120479 - 23 Dec 19 05:48
Ever since Esthera supposedly released him. Its as clear as mud - that bratty Nalili is in fact whats left of Simon after the Empress was done with him. But... as they say, show must go on, so best fucking high priestess ever had to do something, hasnt she?
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User #664110 - 24 Dec 19 07:52
Simon becoming Nalili? I didn't realize TLS was secretly a bimbofication TF game. Can you imagine being brainwashed into thinking you're a succubus, a pretty princess, and Esthera's daughter? Whew.
$10 Content: Novels and Betas and Updates, Oh My! 2019-12-21T01:45:48+00:00

Hey, $10 patrons! Normally I space out rewards, but there was no reason to do so in this case. This post has a book for you to read, an update on Once Ever After, and an opportunity to participate in a DStP prototype if you want.


Necrosurgeon

I have another novel for you, if you want to read it:

https://mega.nz/#!m00EXA7Q!fmoJEh-7Kwd06H2DGjgBP8Lp0M4RP2j9iEKRLMZTq9U

This one... not sure what to say about it. I'm quite happy with it, but it's a more unusual book than any of the others, particularly going hard in one direction with the protagonist. It's shorter than the others, a more focused experience around a single POV character. If you like necromancy or sociopaths, give it a shot!


DStP Prototype

Louck hasn't sent me the fixed version yet, but I'm looking for a few volunteers to test a prototype of a rule change for this game. I'd especially like to hear from people who are interested in the mechanics or hated the coin collecting part. This isn't a brand new version, we've just added a prototype of a new mechanic to endless mode, so there's no graphical polish. Five minutes playing around with it is probably enough to give feedback.

In essence, I think the game is too simple without coin collection, but I hear those who found the coin collection physically painful or too spammy. The new version uses a "coin vacuum" that I hope will help with both. Ideally this (or some other solution) will take the core gameplay up a notch.


Once Ever After

First, check out the public update here (Thanks to Lamsey for making the comparison gif!) :

https://steamcommunity.com/games/951860/announcements/detail/1715240546424290164

I'll give you guys some additional info. Regarding CGs, I just recently gave Crescentia the descriptions for the last set of three. Those will likely take about three months to draw, but they're not likely to be a choke point for the project. Most of the chibis that I think would have real impact are done, so the remaining chibi work depends on what other ideas I feel are worth it.

There are some minor visual assets yet to be finished. Estra might get a full character image, not sure. I also wanted to have custom faces (not full busts) for the NPCs, but we'll see how that goes. Overall, these things are minor issues compared to the major tasks like the map rework.

The one truly major problem is that I tried and failed to get a programmer to fix the combat issues. I asked in several locations and the only people who responded failed to make the changes or went AWOL. This is unfortunate, and worst case scenario I'd have to entirely redesign certain aspects of combat that are currently broken.

Anyway, you may be wondering when the next version for backers will be. The answer is that I'm not sure. At minimum, I want to finish some more details and properly test the remaining content. I'd also like to have enough changes (like improved combat) that it's a significantly upgraded experience from last time. You can definitely expect it in 2020, it's just a question of when I'll take time away from TLS to finish things.

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Comments (15)
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User #3005898 - 22 Dec 19 18:19
I quite enjoyed the new book. One overall comment however was *SPOILER BELOW* When she goes to get his soul back, it was really unclear to me why she bothered killing the medium. Quite a few people discover he's been brought back and no one reacts negatively at all. I couldn't tell if it was simply paranoia on her part (perhaps justified given other events), or if there was actually a problem with what she was doing and she was just running into folks who didn't care.
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sierralee - 22 Dec 19 20:51
That was fast! Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Being resurrected isn't a huge stigma in their society, but the information that he had died isn't something that Lenri wanted to get out. Killing the medium is definitely a ruthless action, and easily argued as not justified, but she didn't know what had been done and wanted no loose ends.
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User #8646661 - 21 Dec 19 10:07
Another book? Out of the blue? Seriously, how do you find the time of day?
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sierralee - 21 Dec 19 14:30
This is actually one of the three I rewrote earlier this year, so it's not 100k of brand new writing. I wasn't going to give it out, but a couple people expressed interest.
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User #4505856 - 21 Dec 19 21:13
Three updates? What an excellent Christmas gift. I look forward to reading your new story. ...but I honestly did not enjoy DStP. It wasn't for me. I am willing to give it another shot, if you would like; the coin harvesting was definitely the worst part and I'm glad to see it go. But I believe that I am unsuited to enjoying the core premise of the gameplay itself. My review might not be helpful. The visual update for Once Ever After seems very promising. These overhauled art assets should go a long way toward rising above the stigma of a "RPG Maker" development and endowing it with an independent, professional look. I particularly enjoy the way you tinker with the mechanics of these productions, like you did with Ouroboros, to create unique playstyles for different games.
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User #3076718 - 22 Dec 19 04:20
It's a side-scroller, normally when I see that on a game I move in a different direction, DStP was fun, but it was really another side-scroller. Nothing against you Sierra, but not my cup of tea really. Mainly because I have so much trouble navigating controlling movement/combos etc.
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sierralee - 22 Dec 19 20:48
It's completely fine; I knew that side project wouldn't appeal to everyone. I was hoping it would be a quick side project done a year ago, but it's looking like it might come out even later than OEA.
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User #664110 - 21 Dec 19 03:35
As someone whose hands hated coin collecting, I can spare a few minutes to test a new mechanic. Is the OEA combat issue just not wanting bosses to be stunlockable or is there more?
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sierralee - 21 Dec 19 04:42
Okay! I'll send you the build once I have it. The stunlock thing is the only truly serious issue. Ideally I'd like to be able to set immunity/resistance to turn order manipulation for solo bosses. There are also a couple of non-trivial cosmetic issues: - If a character gets multiple turns in a row, there's no way to know. - It's awkward that status effects cycle through instead of all displaying.
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User #2540339 - 21 Dec 19 15:44
I'm also happy to test the new build, and happy to hear that the coin collecting mechanic is being worked on.
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User #14120479 - 21 Dec 19 04:01
If I may ask bit off topic, but kinda still on topic question Sierra. For a few months I keep getting a feeling that you a bit hesitant (for the lack of better word) to proceed with final parts of TLS. I keep seeing tons of other things - side projects, novels, even a full fledged, massive fantasy book , yet TLS is proceeding forward on wobbly legs. Please dont get me wrong: I am not trying to rush you, set priorities, or influence your pace in any way - just clarifying, Are you taking a semi-pause, or you did have a change of heart towards large scale cRPG sagas and this is what we can expect going forward (several small-mid scale side projects and heavy literature). Or its just me reading the whole thing wrong?
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sierralee - 21 Dec 19 04:45
Well, you're free to judge my priorities as you see them. But these two side game projects have been WIPs for over two years and probably won't see a real release until late 2020 or beyond. The novel has been written for a year and won't be published until after another TLS update, maybe two. My clearest statement of my priorities was in my five year anniversary post last month.
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User #14120479 - 21 Dec 19 06:19
I meant no offense. Really. Just curious. I did read your anniversary post and even without seeing it, I was (and still am) 100% sure that TLS will be completed and completed well. I guess its none of my damn business and you absolutely have no need to justify or even explain your reasons, but I was trying to sneak a peak beyond finish line for TLS.
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sierralee - 21 Dec 19 14:29
No, you have every right to ask. I was merely trying to express that I feel the balance of my time has been fairly consistent (between various projects) and it's just that this year, some of those are finally coming to fruition. Beyond the finish line is another question. This year I took some time away from TLS for the early ideas poll and then later the rambling thoughts post. Those provided valuable information, but I haven't settled on a next choice. Whatever the true replacement for TLS, it will be another project I commit to for years.
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User #14120479 - 21 Dec 19 17:36
Damn, this is awkward. After rereading my initial post, I can see that it could be seen as rather accusatory. Please excuse me, I was rather tired and should've phrased my questions better.
December 15 Update 2019-12-16T00:01:58+00:00

Lots of satisfying end-of-year stuff going on. I've invested some very productive time into writing, the least of which is finally getting the story version of that scene up on Literotica:

http://literotica.com/s/day-in-the-life-of-an-incubus-king

So it's there if you want to read it in long form. You could also rate it up if you feel like. This will not accomplish much unless it happens to draw some people to TLS, but it will make the monkey part of my brain happy.

I have a Once Ever After update ready, but I'm waiting on the sprite artist to finish a single animation. This guy goes AWOL sometimes, so I may need to post without it. =/ Expect to see both an update on the Steam page and a more detailed update for higher tier backers.

Some of you may have heard about Patreon striking some NSFW accounts again, this time including a text-based game. Since some of you have messaged me, I wanted to reassure people that I haven't been hit. There's no way of knowing what will happen, but thanks to all of you I'm becoming increasingly resistant to such threats.

Finally, DankPotatoes has made another TLS meme if you want to check it out:

https://www.patreon.com/posts/32334941

Back next week!

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Comments (16)
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User #4505856 - 18 Dec 19 04:05
I have dutifully created an account in support of your depraved limbic highs. I've even gone back to rate some of my other fond memories, like "Gentle Violence" and "War of Lust." Favorited. Five stars. Enjoy.
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sierralee - 18 Dec 19 16:28
Whoo, endorphins!
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User #8176682 - 17 Dec 19 13:33
You make an interesting point decanter. To see the remains of the kingdom of vinario which as grubbak said is in the lands of tak'kan. And honestly I don't think the orcs could do well with democracy until all the orcs have the same level of intelligence as orcent, and grubbak as deep thinkers. But I'm hoping those investments made go a long way to helping the orcs achieve that goal. And in the case of Erosia and the IKD compared to aram. I see the reasoning behind it. The idea being that Erosia and IKD come to accept the doom king and basically earning their goodwill which would only benefit him. Whereas Aram wanted nothing more than to invade yhilin even before the doom king appeared, so the idea is Simon knew he would never win over Aram the same way he won over Erosia and the IKD.
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User #6214130 - 16 Dec 19 19:49
Nice to hear that it's going well Sierra. Now, i'm having a slow week, with way too much spare time, and decided to do something a bit different from traditional update-feedback. I would like to offer some loose opinions and observations on the game, now that the first chapter 5 free-roaming section is approaching at some point in the not-so-distant future. I hope it will be at least a little helpfull, and that some of my observations can help polish the update before it hits, since you, like a certain bearded man, are doomed to "react instead of acting" in response to feedback. Take it with a grain of salt, as i'm sure you've already thought of the most of these things: First i would like to bring up some past decisions and factors that seem to have faded into the background, which i'm slightly worried you may have forgotten about: -The Yhilini Expatriate Program, potentionally set in motion during the Ardford Summit was said to be expand to other nations, but so far there has been no mention of it's effects. Now the we are likely headed to Ghenalon next, it seems like an obvious place for the Program to have a visible effect. -Givini Equality: This one may be just me who has failed to see it's effects, but i don't think i've seen this switch utilized in New Givini after activating it after the 3AW, in the petition chamber -Likewise, the Monster Patrol petition has had no mention either after being activated after the 3AW. Some NPC's working for this new faction with a couple of dialogue lines would be somewhat cool -Not quite important, but visiting Vinario might be interesting at some point in Chapter 5, after all the trouble of scamming the scammer out of his deeds -I hope the Aram Border and CD score will play a role in the Aram/Eustrin act. It's all to easy for dirty min/maxers like myself to avoid putting funding into the Aram Border, just to increase the damage they take, to reduce the cost of the embassy ;) Next up are a couple of minor characters that have fallen a bit to the wayside, who i personally hope will return in one way or another -I almost feel stupid asking, because of course you've thought about it, but there is a plan for the Lord of Blood right? It may be intentionally that his name hasn't come up since the Gathering, but just wanted to make sure -Lexande was a pretty cool dude, for the 10 lines of dialogue he had. I hope we'll have a chance to meet him again, if negotiations with Philon ever become relevant -Nia has been stuck in the orc breeding lab for several years. The poor girl deserves a break. At least for long enough to talk a bit with her, i think -Sister Beatrice in Ardford is stuck in a somewhat depressing situation. I hope we see if a less restrictive church can help her in any way Next up, a short list of investments that i think could benefit from having a direct role in the plot in Chapter 5, as they often aren't worth their cost at their current strength: -Tak'Kan Trade stands out to me as the weakest of the 3 "Trades" when investing after the 3AW. The Chalice States can have it's cost reduced, and New Givini Trade has a direct role to play in the Ardford Crisis. Tak'Kan trade, meanwhile has no additional benefits, and belongs to the new state with easiest to raise score (many Tak'Kan investments are quite strong). It may be too late, but it could benefit from having more benefits -Orc Democracy is rather unimpressive, compared to the other million-pron-investments in chapter 4. It provides a chunk of social score, but otherwise has roughly the same effects as Orc Pools, both during the Erosian Crisis and Erosian War, while it costs twice as much. I hope it will have some significance in chapter 5. -The New Givini Mage Guild is probably the second weakest million-investment, but not that bad of an offender. This investment might also benefit from some additional benefits -The Mercenary Flotilla was pretty mediocre back in Chapter 2. Now it's looking even worse, as it didn't play a significant role in any war so far. I feel like a strong fleet should be more significant on the broader scale. One (perhaps unrealistic wish) i had for chapter 5 was the possibility of some additional naval investments and eventual naval battle, now that wars are looking more and more intercontinental. The Merc Flotilla could finally find a use. -Of course, the by far strangest/weakest chapter 4 investment has to be the Helvenna Warehouse. No role in any conflict so far, practically benefitfree in chapter 4. So far it's no better than flower speculation. What's up with that? Finally, a little request on the matter of sx: At the end of chapter 4 i could afford to buy all the combat characters the absolute best weapons and armor buyable in the game stores, and still entered chapter 5 with over 70,000pron. I think introducing an equipment store with absolutely endgame-tier equipment, at ludicrous prices (maybe even more than 100,000sx for a weapon) would be very cool. With access to Ghenalon seemingly imminent, it seems like there is even a lorefriendly place for elite enchanters and weaponsmiths to produce high end gear for ridiculously rich customers. I can't be the only player who has completely run out of locations to spend money. Hope you could stand to read through my ramblings, Sierra. Don't feel obligated to respond, if you fear that commenting on my suggestions might spoil something yet to come. Have fun working, and merry christmas!
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User #664110 - 17 Dec 19 04:29
Some decent ideas there but I would comment on a few: >Not quite important, but visiting Vinario might be interesting at some point in Chapter 5, after all the trouble of scamming the scammer out of his deeds The land that was Vinario is now part of Tak'Kan. Which part may not matter too much, as it was destroyed by the Incubus King. >I hope the Aram Border and CD score will play a role in the Aram/Eustrin act. It's all to easy for dirty min/maxers like myself to avoid putting funding into the Aram Border, just to increase the damage they take, to reduce the cost of the embassy ;) You say this and wink as if it's not supposed to do that. A significant number of players don't like Aram and are happy to let them take the brunt of things. Plus, there's the tradeoff with Hilstara injuries if you really let the Aram front go to shit. >Nia has been stuck in the orc breeding lab for several years. The poor girl deserves a break. Presumably she's not stuck there, otherwise whoever manages the breeding pits has some explaining to do... >Orc Democracy is rather unimpressive It's rule by the people, where the people are on average more aggressive and less intelligent than average. I would be shocked if it turned out to be a runaway success. >Of course, the by far strangest/weakest chapter 4 investment has to be the Helvenna Warehouse. No role in any conflict so far, practically benefitfree in chapter 4. So far it's no better than flower speculation. What's up with that? It does raise Chalice States score, but it's not an investment so much as disaster relief funds. If the Chalice States is in good shape, it's to be expected that it wouldn't do much good.
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User #6214130 - 17 Dec 19 11:05
A good response, but there seems to be a few misunderstandings as to what i meant: -I meant it would be interesting to visit the specific region of Tak'Kan that is Vinario. An estate, a castle or town that used to be an important part of the kingdom. Though admitedly, it's really not a priority by any means -I really hope saboting Aram by letting them get messed up in the war won't be the optimal path. Intentionally allowing pillaging and chaos, which certainly would hit the poorest in Aram hardest seems against everything Simon stands for. It also doesn't make much sense in a gameplay sense, as the entire game is focused on making you to come through situations like this as best as you can, and the dialogue always makes it clear if you screwed up, like at the Aram Border. Having a single scenario in the entire game where the point is causing MORE chaos seems counterproductive, no matter what country is the victim. Simon goes out of his way to protect freakin Erosia and the IKD. Doesn't make much sense to sabotage Aram by comparison. The tradeoff with Hilstara is also somewhat easily avoided, while still messing up Aram. -The Nia thing was mostly tongue in cheek. I just meant it would be a fun perspective to get, now that she has been working in the pit, and we haven't seen her since before the 3AW. -It's very possible that Orc Democracy wouldn't function well and that donating to the warehouse counts mostly as disaster relief funds. But it still doesn't make too much sense from a gameplay angle, for some investments to be so much obviously weaker than the rest. It doesn't seem intentional either.
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User #8176682 - 17 Dec 19 13:42
O I had an idea, maybe Sierra could work into plot that the capital being built in tak'kan is the former capital of vinario
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User #664110 - 17 Dec 19 15:43
>The tradeoff with Hilstara is also somewhat easily avoided, while still messing up Aram. Depends on what amount of CD value represents messing up Aram, I suppose. But if the dwarf embassy price tiers are any guide, you can't get all that much without hitting the tradeoff. >But it still doesn't make too much sense from a gameplay angle, for some investments to be so much obviously weaker than the rest. It doesn't seem intentional either. ...why? There's no requirement that investments all be about the same level of worthwhile. If you misread the situation and make inappropriate investments, you don't get as good a return on your money. It might be a gameplay issue if there were no clues at all.
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sierralee - 17 Dec 19 16:50
Thanks for your extensive feedback! While I do keep a lot of notes and have plans for most aspects of the game, I'm not perfect and so things do slip through. Many of these are slated for developments. Some of them, like the monster patrol investment, were never intended to have any long term consequences, though I suppose a cosmetic effect wouldn't hurt. Nia, on the other hand, is a tertiary character I haven't thought about in a long while. Yeah, maybe she should get something retroactively. >I almost feel stupid asking, because of course you've thought about it, but there is a plan for the Lord of Blood right? It may be intentionally that his name hasn't come up since the Gathering, but just wanted to make sure There is a plan. >One (perhaps unrealistic wish) i had for chapter 5 was the possibility of some additional naval investments and eventual naval battle, now that wars are looking more and more intercontinental. Sorry, but naval trade and warfare are less common due to the threat of sea monsters. >Finally, a little request on the matter of sx: At the end of chapter 4 i could afford to buy all the combat characters the absolute best weapons and armor buyable in the game stores, and still entered chapter 5 with over 70,000pron. Huh, most people have complained about lack of Sx, and if you mean you have 70k Sx on top of equipment that's more than I thought was in the game. In any case, you're already going to get your wish for endgame equipment. >Have fun working, and merry christmas! Thanks, you too!
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User #6214130 - 17 Dec 19 21:23
Good to know you got at least a bit of useful info out of my feedback Sierra. Glad to hear that you've already planned out most of everything and that you are even concidering looking at some of my additional minor notes. On the matter of sx in chapter 5, i should probably mention that i have been playing very stingy, selling nearly all my potions and equipment when it got outdated, and only bought new gear when i could see on the wiki that it was the best in the game, with few exceptions. (for example, i never spent sx on armor before reaching Eustrin in chapter 3, and buying Assault Armor). So my excess cash is definitely partly my own fault, but it's sounds like you are already preparing a proper money drain for chapter 5, so that is good to hear. Merry christmas, once again
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User #15235866 - 17 Dec 19 22:49
I'm in the same situation with Sx, I actually contemplated spending it down just to make sure I didn't trigger a future anti-cheating penalty.
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User #333678 - 16 Dec 19 00:49
As a creator, and one who is heavily in-tune with all the happenings, what is your impression of Subscribestar? Would it be convenient for you to have patrons start switching over, just in case Patreon goes all Yahoo Groups/Tumblr on you?
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sierralee - 16 Dec 19 02:17
I only keep the SubscribeStar open because a few diehard fans don't want to support Patreon. SubscribeStar has been a bit frustrating to deal with, not monetarily worth the small amount of funding I get there. Plus, I don't want to divide players and have to duplicate more reports/updates. In any case, the root problem is global payment processors. If SubscribeStar became the new Patreon, they'd likely start running into problems and going in a similar direction. I think the only real security is to become stable enough that no single platform can kill a project, which is what I've been trying to do.
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User #333678 - 16 Dec 19 06:01
Got it! Patreon it is then.
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User #7507179 - 19 Dec 19 23:09
Hi Sierra! Long time fan, first time comment here - I just want to say, TLS is the greatest thing I have ever played. I have played video games my whole life (I started with a ps one and Spyro Year of the Dragon when I was maybe 6) and nothing out there is written this well, is this complex, or is this fun and satisfying. This game is so good that I made spreadsheets about it voluntarily. It's so good that I actually told my girlfriend that this game existed, and explained 1) rpgmaker games in general and 2) adult games. Anyway, what I'm saying is, apropos your recent reflective post, I am so glad you chased making this thing and I believe that the world in general is a better place for it. Thank you!
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sierralee - 20 Dec 19 03:36
Hello! I appreciate your support as well as your kind words. It has been very gratifying to find so many people who enjoy what I've created. ^-^
The Brightest Shadow Beta 1.5 2019-12-08T21:04:43+00:00

It's time to open up The Brightest Shadow to all $5 backers! This is early access to my epic fantasy novel that is coming out in early 2020, depending on book seasons and my other releases.

What to say about this? It's the first volume in an epic fantasy series. Though I know it won't appeal to everyone, what I can say is that I feel it's the most similar to TLS in scope and that I believe in it as a story I want to tell. As I said a while back, this is sort of a path not taken when it comes to TLS, with a "the hero is the villain" premise played straight instead of for comedy.

Anyway, enough prelude. Here is the book in PDF, epub, and mobi:

https://mega.nz/#!K0EWkCBb!FhxJgzMMU-xpeMsKg3r53Hv79EHVWlZj6jE_MUU0diI


Changes: This is very similar to previous releases and there would be no reason to reread except for the prelude. It has received several changes, mostly stripping out all flourishes in an attempt to make it more straightforward. Feedback welcome.


Stuff For Readers

The most valuable thing you can give me is your feedback, however works best for you! But if you have an Amazon.com account and think the book is worth a good review, please let me know so I can get a rough estimate of launch reviews. Regardless of if you can/want to review, if you give me feedback, let me know a name/pseudonym and I'll put you in the book's acknowledgements.

If you like what you've read or just want a taste of the world, check out the following worldbuilding posts:

Introduction: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-introduction.html

Coran Culture: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-corans.html

Magic System: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-sein.html

Rhen Culture: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-rhen.html

Mansthein Species/Culture: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-mansthein.html

Oken Culture: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-oken.html

Maps: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-three-cultures.html

Final: https://thebrightestshadow.blogspot.com/2019/10/the-brightest-shadow-beyond-chorhan.html

They have a bunch of art, additional info, and other fun stuff. ^-^ Feel free to mention if you have any questions/comments on those too, since I intend to make them public posts eventually. Thanks again to everyone who supports me!

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Comments (10)
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User #664110 - 10 Dec 19 08:27
Definitely think the prelude is in a better state. One suggestion for a tweak - to me this sentence felt better with an additional clause in it: "It reflected the sun overhead, but not the field of twisted corpses. " For example in the previous version it was "It reflected the sun overhead, but not the field of twisted corpses, not the blood."
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User #664110 - 10 Dec 19 11:06
"Someone had moved in front of them, a Coran woman... no, it was Veron" Should remove the "no" here, I think, if Veron is a Coran woman.
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sierralee - 10 Dec 19 20:02
On the second one, I see how that misleads. Will change. On the prelude... ugh, I don't know. I did like that sentence before, but I changed other things I liked. Not sure on this one.
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User #2540339 - 10 Dec 19 20:13
For what it's worth, I agree that sentence is better with the two commas and the extra clause. It's evocative of a traumatised witness who doesn't want to recollect the things they saw.
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User #2540339 - 8 Dec 19 21:11
The new prologue feels like an improvement to me, though difficult to say since it's not my first reading. Found one typo - in the second sentence, "and hand" should be "and the hand".
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sierralee - 8 Dec 19 21:28
Fixed, thanks.
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User #15235866 - 10 Dec 19 04:30
Back to TLS for a second, the first time you visit the Holy Plane in Chapter 4, in the opening dialogue, Yarra says "Then I look forwarding to visiting Sexy Times Land."
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sierralee - 10 Dec 19 04:46
Good catch, thanks!
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User #664110 - 10 Dec 19 09:26
I wonder if we will visit Sexy Times Land.
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User #15235866 - 11 Dec 19 07:12
In the Council of Gawnfall, after Riala addresses the council with the purity research completed, Kerannii says, "Thank you for bringing this to our attention! You've certainly give me a lot to think about." (given)
Book Cover Poll + December 7 Update 2019-12-07T20:43:44+00:00

Hello, everyone! Unless you're just completely uninterested in book covers, please vote in the poll on this post to let me know which cover you like best.

Ideally I'd like people to vote on which cover they like best in theory. If you like the concept of one cover best, but have a minor complaint about the art or text, vote for it and just let me know your specific thoughts. I'd like to collect some hard data, but comments are welcome as well.

The Covers

Action: https://i.imgur.com/jtkQsUI.png

Landscape: https://i.imgur.com/6TnrNOZ.jpg

Object: https://i.imgur.com/9Q1zy7P.jpg

Path: https://i.imgur.com/DNgCSFD.png

Split: https://i.imgur.com/n7aKLC1.jpg

Sumi: https://i.imgur.com/9gElgps.png


On to the general update, I'm glad I didn't rush 0.48.0. This year there were a whole host of different things I've been putting off for a long time in favor of a major project. I've been tearing through misc items, really clearing out my To Do lists, which feels good. Expect some other updates, the book, and other stuff.

The weekly post is a day early because I wanted to do all my posting at once.

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Comments (32)
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User #1001252 - 8 Dec 19 18:54
Gotta say Split is the most intriguing, but I also like Action. Both of these have an epic feel to them.
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User #3737085 - 8 Dec 19 02:07
Path and Split look really interesting. Action looks cool but it doesn't seem to fit the name.
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User #2909283 - 7 Dec 19 23:55
How much would it cost to get you to poorly photoshop all the covers into one big SUPER cover and go with that? In all seriousness, I went with Sumi because it caught my eye more than the others.
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User #2540339 - 8 Dec 19 11:26
How much would it cost? Only a little time, my friend. https://i.imgur.com/nFWuxrE.jpg
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sierralee - 8 Dec 19 13:30
Haha, I'm glad this happened.
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User #4505856 - 8 Dec 19 07:50
I also echo Decanter. I like the Split cover best, but I think the Path cover would draw the most eyes and create the correct idea about your book's genocidal Chosen One. If possible the environment around the white silhouette in Path should be darker, so that it contrasts him better. He blends into the background as it is now and that diminishes the effect. Can you arrange for the artist to dim the mountains into a rugged charcoal color, similar to what we currently see on the left? The outer fields could also benefit from additional definition, but that is of less concern.
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User #782400 - 8 Dec 19 04:48
None of it fits the title, so I pick the one that I like the best.
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User #3660429 - 10 Dec 19 02:33
My thoughts on each: Action: Ugly. Don't pick this one. Landscape: Looks nice, but fairly generic. A solid backup for if nothing else works. Object: The sword looks photoshopped and the image is overall unimpressive. Path: I really like this one, because its style reminds me of a medieval tapestry, and does a good job of capturing the gruesome spectacle of the Hero. However, putting a scene that violent on the cover might drive some people away. I'm still voting for it. Split: Looks nice, but it makes Tani look like a cross between a Super Seiyan and Storm from the X-Men. Sumi: Looks nice, but gives the impression that TBS is a Japanese Samurai novel, which it is not. In summary, I like the Path the best, but Landscape might be a safer choice.
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User #664110 - 11 Dec 19 02:40
In Split, I don't think that's supposed to be Tani; it seems more likely to be a Hero.
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User #3660429 - 11 Dec 19 05:49
I assumed it was Tani because sickle knife.
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User #2540339 - 11 Dec 19 19:14
It is Tani - the glow is down to the artist's interpretation. The good news is that you must be strong if you can see it, since sight is usually one of the later-developed ways to sense sein.
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User #9829041 - 12 Dec 19 17:05
Sumi. Landscape is aesthetically nice, but feels a bit too generic (you could use it as is on a lot of different books), object has the same project without the same qualities, and the other three are too "video game artbook" for my taste.
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User #563983 - 9 Dec 19 08:27
I like the action one best, even if throwing knives in a battle is kind of silly (like fire arrows, but that's a different subject).
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User #414928 - 8 Dec 19 19:41
Like snus, I like Sumi best, because it combines foreboding with cool, without being a bit squicky and over the top like Path. I'd say Split would come in second. I really disliked Action mostly because the main figure is drawn in a badly contorted body position. And even if that were fixed, it would still be pretty generic, which Object and Landscape both are already. Another minor point about the sword, a mild backwards curve gives a better slashing surface, but too much curve is pointless - it gives you poor balance and poor weight/reach ratio. Such a weapon is impractical in actual combat, and yet the throwing dagger in the other hand indicates that she seems to favor practicality in weapons. It might make more sense if she carries something like a main gauche, something that would have reasonable utility in a close fight. With her height and frame, she cannot hope to compete on reach - hence the throwing weapons.
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User #2540339 - 8 Dec 19 20:53
Tani's blade should actually be a sickle knife - the artist drew it too long and sword-like. I believe these covers are concepts rather than final versions, hence some of the details being a bit wrong.
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sierralee - 8 Dec 19 21:29
Lamsey is right, the weapon isn't really accurate. Tani's weapon is supposed to modeled on the real-life khopesh, and it's her backup weapon when she can't keep enemies at range.
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User #414928 - 8 Dec 19 21:52
That makes a bit more sense. The kopesh design was actually based more on a battle axe than a sword - which is why most designs look like long axes (and in fact the part of the "sword" that is below the axe-curve is not sharpened), and the hook around is supposed to be able to catch arms or shields. Historically they became useless once metalworking was advanced enough to allow for thrusting weapons that won't immediately snap, around the 13th century. Hope Tani is very strong!
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User #376218 - 7 Dec 19 23:49
I haven't read the book yet, so take this with appropriate quantities of salt. Action and Object come across as generic fantasy book covers that are so tropy that they don't convey anything and don't stand out. Split is similar, but at least conveys an expectation that magic lies within. Landscape seems rather...pastoral I guess? Doesn't exactly scream "read me!" to me. Sumi has a manga vibe to it, which doesn't really seem appropriate for what I know of the book. Path conveys fantasy with a hint of magic, and does so without feeling tropy or derivative. It gets my vote.
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User #2540339 - 7 Dec 19 20:49
I assume if we've already voted in one place (e.g. the Sarah Lin Patreon or mailing list), we shouldn't vote in another, to avoid double-counting?
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sierralee - 7 Dec 19 20:51
Right.
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User #6214130 - 8 Dec 19 09:09
If i entered a store, and found six books and had to pick one to read, based only on the cover, i would pick split. It catches the eye. It gets my vote.
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User #6214130 - 8 Dec 19 09:11
And while i get why some people think that Path is best, i also think that its way too grim for a lot of people. The excess blood and corpses would certainly scare some potential readers away
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User #18269989 - 9 Dec 19 21:50
The action one looks tacky to me. I love the Sumi one, but think the landscape is most pleasing to the eye.
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User #8491280 - 7 Dec 19 23:16
Agree with Decanter for choices. Overall the only thing I really hope doesn't end up as the cover is "action" due to it being so generic and overdone as a fantasy book cover communicating low effort.
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User #664110 - 7 Dec 19 21:03
I voted for Path. I also voted for Split but it'd be my second choice definitely. Both of them at least capture something of what the book is about, and Path is more striking and less generic. Plus the big-ass title text feels less in-your-face somehow, in Path. Action is still whitewashing Tani, and that's no good. Everyone knows you're supposed to wait for the Netflix adaptation to change character races. Not sure what Sumi is supposed to be depicting, but I don't like the sideways text.
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User #664110 - 7 Dec 19 22:00
It occurs to me that most of your patrons won't have read the book yet, but you're doing the poll anyway. Maybe you don't care if the cover relates to the story at all? I feel like that should matter, though...
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User #2540339 - 7 Dec 19 22:08
I agree that the cover should relate to the story, but I think both perspectives are useful - after all, the whole point of the cover is to attract people who haven't read the book yet!
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User #664110 - 7 Dec 19 22:11
I did think of that, but I also think that a voter can look at both angles after they've read the book, but not before.
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sierralee - 7 Dec 19 22:36
In an ideal world, covers might exist to represent a book, but I've been told by authors who know more than I do that they should be viewed as posters advertising the book. Knowing which ones appeal most to people who haven't read the book is therefore important data.
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User #4089879 - 8 Dec 19 02:21
I think you were given good advise. I don't think I've ever bought a book because I liked the cover art, but I've definitely refrained from plucking one off the shelf for consideration because of the cover art. I voted for Sumi and Path because, if I knew nothing of the book, those are the two that would catch my eye on a shelf or web page.
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User #664110 - 8 Dec 19 07:34
Well, regardless, I did consider what would interest me if I knew nothing about the book, and that still leads me to voting the same way. We got generic action scene, generic sword, generic weeb swordsman guy, and two interesting covers... I guess Landscape does a little better in ignorance because it's purty but I still wouldn't put it over Path or Split.
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User #9585089 - 8 Dec 19 12:42
I like the SUMI one best. The only issue it is not obvious that a FANTASY element is in it by the cover. Brightest shadow is my second favorite but the faces looks too unpfoessional. The faces must be redrawn.
December 1 Update 2019-12-01T22:44:46+00:00

I hope those of you in a place that celebrated Thanksgiving had a good time. I've been hard at work, but this week's update is going to be a bit of a scattered one. As I look to the last month of the year, I'm reviewing my yearly goals and considering how best to use my time.

TLS: One awkward thing is that the next TLS update would naturally come out in about a month, and I've found that patrons have much less time to play during the Christmas and New Years seasons. That means either rushing to get it done early or accepting that a smaller update will be out later. Traditionally I've rushed, but this year I'm considering investing time in some other things.

Once Ever After: One of my goals for 2019 was to finish all the creative heavy lifting on this game so that it would be off my mental plate. I have only partially accomplished this so far. I've made new content through the end of the game, so I could actually create a new build with a bit more work, but I wanted to wait on that until I'd gotten more assets and fixed some enduring issues, so that anyone replaying gets an upgraded experience.

The Brightest Shadow: I'm still waiting on a few more people to finish giving feedback, but I'd like to make a new draft this month. I'll make this one available to $5 patrons to tide you guys over if the TLS update isn't rushed.

Steam Awards: This one isn't work on my end, but things for you to potentially do, if you want. Several people have contacted me about nominating TLS for the "Story Rich" or "Labor of Love" Steam Awards. Only the most popular games ever win these, but it doesn't hurt if you want to nominate.

Steam Reviews: Weirdly, the rate of TLS reviews has increased lately. I didn't do anything to encourage this, but I'll certainly accept it. If anybody has an account they'd use for NSFW games and hasn't reviewed, please do! I wasn't sure getting to "Overwhelmingly Positive" would be possible, but if this pace continues, it might happen one day.

This has been a very good year, but a long one, subjectively. We'll see how much energy I can muster this week, then next update I should be able to give a clearer idea of the situation.

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Comments (23)
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User #8176682 - 2 Dec 19 22:38
I think I see your point Lamsey, thank you for explaining it.
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User #8176682 - 2 Dec 19 17:34
Not to give condemnation or anything of the kind but I've read the announcement here and you've said normally you rushed with updates for TLS which is great. But now you said that you've found out that a lot of people aren't able to play games as much for the Christmas holiday. What does that have to do with anything? If you dont want to rush that's your choice but I simply fail to see the rationale behind your decision. Please explain it to me
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User #2540339 - 2 Dec 19 22:23
Patrons can help with bug reports, comments on balance, help with scripting, etc. One of Sierra's many strong points is her responsiveness to feedback, but that can only work if we're around to give it.
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sierralee - 2 Dec 19 23:24
Releases during the holidays don't work as well for several reasons. Some patrons I normally rely on for in-depth feedback are with family and can't play until later. Some feel as though they "should" play the game even though they don't have much time. Instead of several days where I can focus on making fixes, feedback trickles in over time and there's more repetition. In short, I think things go smoother when I don't release right around major holidays. But this time, the development cycle doesn't line up very well.
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User #5253477 - 1 Dec 19 23:07
Thought it would be a very long shot nominating it but tis the thought that counts.
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User #4787752 - 2 Dec 19 04:31
TLS has already smashed past any quotas of awesome I had for it this year, so take as little or long with it as you like. Out of curiosity, will the next update be straight to Eustrin/Aram or a period of world exploring?
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sierralee - 2 Dec 19 04:45
Straight to another plot segment. The world exploration will come after, and will be a huge update.
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User #4787752 - 2 Dec 19 05:05
Thank you, glad to know.
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User #2909283 - 2 Dec 19 00:03
I'd love to see "Angry Janine" get laid sooner rather than later (not to mention her Aramite dwarven cum expert getting booted while Robin heckles him). But, I know what waiting brings when it comes to TLS, so you do your thing. .... I can wait. .... GAH! NO I CAN'T! BRING ON THE GODDESS FUCKING!
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sierralee - 2 Dec 19 04:12
Players who have invested in supporting Eustrin may soon be happy on one of those counts...
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User #2909283 - 2 Dec 19 04:47
Oh! Are the succubi gonna blast Aramite dude with a lust spell where he starts chasing male dwarves around and ends up getting kicked out? If not I vote for that! Bonus points if Robin's the one who actually casts the spell and frames Yarra.
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User #2540339 - 1 Dec 19 23:14
The reviews are probably coming in because of the sale - one of the goals for the event badge is to leave a review for one of your nominations.
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sierralee - 2 Dec 19 04:11
Ah, they did start up around that time. Interesting, thanks.
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User #3025231 - 4 Dec 19 00:55
So I might have missed this in the last few updates, but when will the art be put in the game? I have not played the last update and I don't want to restart from the beginning, but from what I understand the art will be available through Simon's Reflect skill, right? Is it coming in the "get hype for 0.49"? Even a few scenes added in would be cool - I was average on the artist at first but the more I see of her work the more I like it
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sierralee - 4 Dec 19 01:20
It will be added in one major update, when the art for the full first chapter is done. Which update that will be will depend on how fast Annikath can finish the remaining scenes. My hope is that launching big will potentially draw new eyes to the game. In any case, all the art will be available via the Reflect skill, yes.
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User #485234 - 4 Dec 19 09:09
IIRC, you mentioned earlier that there will be an option to actually not show the art. Is this still true?
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sierralee - 4 Dec 19 13:09
That is still the plan, yes.
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User #6214130 - 2 Dec 19 14:51
So the main question is... do we want a great christmas present, or a great way to start off the new year? 🤔🤔🤔 I'm honestly leaning more towards waiting a bit. Sometimes i hype myself a bit too much for small updates like 0.46. I would rather wait an extra month, and play something larger in one go.
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sierralee - 2 Dec 19 16:14
Then I would recommend skipping (or not hyping yourself for) 0.48.x but get hype for 0.49.0.
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User #6214130 - 2 Dec 19 17:00
Then that is exactly what i will do :)
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User #10518194 - 3 Dec 19 05:37
While I want more content and cannot stop myself from playing at least every other update longer ones are better for me. I have never been quite as invested as I was when I played the whole game blind with only one restart because I didn't know you could save Altina. I still remember ending on the shard sipping scene, which was so good. Even if the sipping part did take the sadness out of Yarra's "happy even if I only have a decade left" speech. I never have and maybe never will support another NSFW game dev and I'm not sure I would have supported you if I had found the game before the end of chapter 1 or maybe even 2. While I am curious what's going on in Eustrin and Aram others have already made comments about that. I may be alone in this but I hope it isn't too long before we find out more about the Great Sage of Ghenalon and other Thenours stuff. The scope of the game is so much larger at this point I am unsure if more than a few Thenours updates could ever be justified.
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sierralee - 4 Dec 19 01:18
You'll definitely get some more on Thenours, though the war mostly depopulated it of major players.
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User #21976798 - 1 Dec 19 23:35
You bet your ass i nominated it ;)
Five Years of TLS 2019-11-22T23:58:46+00:00

(Brief paragraph of business: the newest public version is now available on the blog and Steam. This will also be your weekly update, as I won't have anything particularly notable to say in just a couple days.)

Five years ago today, I posted the first version of TLS (though at that time it was TLF). That's a long time. It isn't hyperbolic to say that this game changed my life, so I'm going to share some discursive thoughts for the occasion.


Quitting Your Day Job

It's cheesy to say you've always wanted to make games, but I have spike-filled level designs scribbled on homework to back it up. I went through phases where I wanted to write books, make games, and other specifics, but I've always wanted to have a creative career. Given the way the world works, that's a rough dream.

Prior to and during the early development of TLS, I was making a lot of attempts. I had a job and a half, but both of those had periods of time where I was stuck in an office with a computer. I aggressively tried some of everything, hoping that something would take off so that I could forge a creative career for myself.

One alternate path I attempted was writing romance novels. You're not going to get the pseudonym for those from me, because I didn't do much work I was proud of. I put very little effort into them and didn't really believe in the final product... and yet they found success. Much more success than other games and projects that I cared about much more. As you can imagine, this made me pretty cynical.

Fortunately, TLS started to gain momentum in a way that other projects hadn't. Those of you who have been around for a long time remember that it was a very slow build, not overnight success, but I found it encouraging to have people respond to something I cared about. This little RPG has grown until I could build a career on it, including being able to explore some other creative paths. The alternate reality version of me that unhappily churned out romance novels has grown fainter and fainter, though I have to say that I was relieved when Street Cultivation finally broke my sales records in romance.

I'm extremely grateful to all of you for this. I assure you, I'm not wasting your investment in me. The number of events that could prevent me from completing TLS is growing smaller and I believe that I've built a foundation for a creative career.


Thoughts on Long Games

I've always been fascinated by long games, if you'll allow me a tangent. When I was younger, I remember hearing that White Knight Chronicles was supposed to have 100 hours of gameplay. Now, if you played it, you know that WKC was a bog standard 20 hour jRPG with 80 hours of optional MMO grind at the end. But before it came out, I didn't know that, and I found myself trying to think about what kind of story would actually require 100 hours.

TLS is one answer to that. The exact gametime will vary from person to person, but I've done my best to create a satisfying lengthy experience. One of the strengths of RPGs is that they can sustain long gametimes better, due to switching between combat/social/administrative elements. I hope the final product gives the player the sense that they've participated in a massive story and decided the fate of nations (beyond defeating World Destroyer Guy).

Way back at the beginning, I wasn't sure that could be sustained. Some old fans will remember that the early releases didn't have the first chapter title - I didn't want to come off as naively overambitious.

Five years later, the overall shape of the story is clear. There's still a substantial amount of content remaining, but we're much closer to the end than the beginning. As I've always promised, TLS will have a definitive ending that I intend to make satisfying for all those who have invested so much time in the game. I might revisit the world/characters in the future, but TLS will be a comprehensive experience.

Please look forward to The Last Sovereign 2: Sovereign Harder.


Enthusiasm for the Future

You probably know of creators who grew tired of their own work or lost their enthusiasm, from Arthur Conan Doyle to recent examples on Patreon. There are those who draw near the end of a project and are sick of it.

That's never happened for me with TLS. Now, no job is constant puppies and rainbows. A lot of days my work involves discipline and sometimes I just need to sit down and do some element I don't like. Sometimes it takes a little while for me to get all my TLS thoughts loaded up and make effective progress.

Enthusiasm does change over the course of a project, of course. At the beginning I had five entire chapters of plot to think about and plot points or characters I was still nailing down. The closer we get toward the end, the smaller the remaining creative space is for me. If TLS was a shorter project I might push hard to flesh out the final moments, but since there's still substantial work remaining, I need to pace myself. I appreciate your patience as I've explored books, visual novels, and other projects to keep my creative energies high.

But even considering all that, in the end I always reach a state where I love working on TLS, whether it's writing character interactions or balancing another section's mechanics. I've done my best to create the type of game/story I enjoy, and I enjoy working on it as well. This career continues to be a pleasure, so once again, thank you.

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Comments (48)
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User #435478 - 23 Nov 19 10:16
I see TLS 2 and my soul has an orgasm.
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User #8195103 - 23 Nov 19 19:39
I'm more than a little curious about your old romance works, even if I don't expect to actually enjoy something you stand behind so little as a writer. I've spent a fair amount of time lately contemplating whether, or to what extent, to try and make money with creative work that doesn't align with my own interests as a creator, and I'm interested in how you found the experience. (My other project I've brought up before which does align with my own interests is still in progress, but going slower than I'd like, but I'm looking forward to when I'll have more to say about it.)
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 23:37
I have the impression that people's experience with write-to-market work really varies. Personally I feel like I have a subgenre-specific buffer that's slowly worn down by work I don't care about: while it's there, I can churn out material fairly easily, but once it's gone, it doesn't come back and the process starts really grating on my soul. For me, how much I have to interact with a community and how I feel about that community also has an impact. I don't think that should be taken as any more than my two cents, though, since people vary considerably in creative processes. Best of luck in making your own projects and choices work for you!
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User #4505856 - 23 Nov 19 07:32
It has been my sincere pleasure to follow you on this long, strange journey across sexual parodies and deconstructed RPG tropes. I look forward to another five years of it.
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User #7508574 - 23 Nov 19 00:20
I played WKC and it was quite mediocre, Rogue Galaxy by the same company was much better. Now if you are looking for long games you have to try Legend of Heroes by Nihom Falcom, their Trails series is a masterpiece.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 01:34
I never got to play Rogue Galaxy, but now that you reminded me of it, I might have to put it on my list. Trails has been on my list for a while, I just need to find time for it.
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User #7508574 - 23 Nov 19 01:51
I played all localized games, I'm playing cold steel 3 atm and it's a quite long game. The first two games of the cold steel saga cost me about 80h each and the third is even longer.
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User #8195103 - 23 Nov 19 04:54
Personally, I started Rogue Galaxy and gave it up quite early on. I wrote a review of it on tvtropes way back which reflects my feelings on the game. https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/reviews.php?target_group=VideoGame&target_title=RogueGalaxy Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky on the other hand, is my favorite RPG from a commercial studio in the last decade, so I'll register this as a vote that one of these things is better than the other.
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User #8225764 - 23 Nov 19 07:18
The idea of TLS getting a sequel ever just blew my mind. Like I hadn't even considered the possibility and it makes me so happy that its on the table and could happen.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 15:01
I am really sorry to tell you that I was joking with that sentence. While I might create other projects in the same world, the ending will be definitive and there will be no TLS2.
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User #485234 - 23 Nov 19 13:53
> Please look forward to The Last Sovereign 2: Sovereign Harder. itshappening.gif Jokes aside. I remember playing the very first public version. "And then you die." This moment right there i recognized the promise of greatness. And you delivered. And then Janine, Sarai and Riala discuss The Plan happened. That was great. P.S. Are we getting that small house we were promised?
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 15:01
You'll find out eventually!
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User #13735843 - 23 Nov 19 01:11
"Please look forward to The Last Sovereign 2: Sovereign harder" Well now I'm wishing you had kept the title as 'The Last Fucklord' purely so the sequel could've been subtitled 'Fuck Harder.'
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 01:36
Haha, I've always intended to do a sequel joke, but back when it was TLF I was thinking of subtitling it "Fuck Bugaloo".
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User #2540339 - 23 Nov 19 11:47
You know, it'd be thematically appropriate for the sequel to be The Last Sovereign: The Two Towers. Of course, the discovery of a parallel-reality Tower would then provide the setup for the crowning Oscar-winning glory of the trilogy, The Return Of The Incubus King.
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User #664110 - 23 Nov 19 12:49
2nd Tower can be the outer space Tower, giving us the Spelljammer equivalent of the TLS setting.
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User #2909283 - 23 Nov 19 01:13
We all know your pseudonym was Sara Lee. Your cynical attitude led you to just rip off the bread brand.
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User #178986 - 23 Nov 19 20:12
A little nitpick, the houses in the slums still refer to things that happened before chapter 4 began with the closing of the bottom warehouse and Aka says the church has done something useful.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 23:37
Ah, you mean the door! Yes, it seems like Aka's comment should no longer occur after so long.
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User #4787752 - 24 Nov 19 02:50
Would it be possible to replace Aka's dialogue with an event from Simon and Robin of sending that entire warehouse to the deepest pits of the Tower Abyss as revenge for all the times those spiders kicked the shit out of us in chapter 1?
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sierralee - 24 Nov 19 03:39
The spider house will return! Perhaps not in the way you expect!
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User #4787752 - 24 Nov 19 05:21
Fuck.
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User #664110 - 24 Nov 19 06:33
Gonna be optimistic and assume it returns as the cute spidergirl house, even though there's no canonical hint of spidergirls even in Zirantia or the Tower.
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User #485234 - 24 Nov 19 07:04
Is it now infested by friendly neighborhood driders?
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User #9829041 - 25 Nov 19 19:04
Sure, and they sell cider and donuts. Then proceed to kick your ass harder than the most powerful Lovecraftian abominations of the Tower due to some stupid misunderstanding.
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User #664110 - 26 Nov 19 00:09
Kinda makes me feel like Ginasta is going to try out baking and spider cosplay because she doesn't know what to do with her life anymore.
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User #4032419 - 23 Nov 19 00:20
"Please look forward to The Last Sovereign 2: Sovereign Harder." You've said it now, we're going to hold you to it. And then, future sequels: Sovereign with a Vengeance, The Sovereign Strikes Back, Sovereign and Harem's Excellent Adventure, and Half Life 3. As someone who has the intent to have a creative career but is weighed down by, in no small part, an excess of cynicism, you are one of the examples that gives me hope maybe it can work out if I actually make myself try. I'm really glad for the success you've found and it's entirely deserved. I look forward to continuing to follow your efforts into the future.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 01:32
Best of luck to you! I still think a fair degree of cynicism is warranted, but that shouldn't stop you from making the effort.
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User #5341776 - 27 Nov 19 23:36
Late 0.47 criticism... Whatever happened to "Fuck Off Guy" at the entrance to Stineford? I miss him.
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sierralee - 28 Nov 19 03:47
He has a new line for Chapter 5! But it's suppressed during this visit for cutscene reasons.
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User #664110 - 17 Jan 20 03:55
I figured he fucked off, per the name.
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User #142688 - 23 Nov 19 02:25
I wanna say you're joking on the sequel, but honestly, I would love it if you actually did make one. TLS is legit an amazing game, and I'm kinda sad it'll be coming to a close. D:
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User #4787752 - 23 Nov 19 02:40
I'm not sure TLS will ever end for me. I know there will come a day when we vanquish the last villain, have one final send off orgy, and get that last sweet sweet SWEET iteration of Pron, (I'll cry the hardest when that comes) but when that curtain closes I know that the very first thing I do after seeing the credits, is to open up the menu and hit New Game. TLS is one of the games that I know a decade after it's finale, I'll boot it up it again. Perhaps just for a bit of fun, or maybe I'll wake up in a cold sweat and realize I just thought of a route that lets me save an extra few pron. And when I do TLS has so many little hidden corners and secrets, be it in unique scenes for playing a certain way, or random NPC bank guards who really want to talk. So that even long after it's ended, and I've played through the game to completion twenty times, there will be something new to discover on the twenty first.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 04:00
Derek: Not just yet! But in the end, I'll want to leave TLS with a satisfying ending. If you want to revisit old friends, I do have in mind several stories that I'll write after the game concludes. WaxerRed: I'm glad people have found the game worthy of so much replaying. Though I don't intend to fiddle with the game too much after completion, I do intend to potentially make improvements beyond the completed version.
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User #3025231 - 23 Nov 19 05:26
I think I started playing the game somewhere in either Chap 1 or 2, but I found it amazing. The slow build of word of mouth support doesn't surprise me at all, nor does the fact that it now can support you in other projects. It has epic storytelling plus excellent humor plus erotic content delivered by a committed creator who doesn't miss deadlines or fail to communicate with her supporters - you are a pretty unique creator
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User #8176682 - 23 Nov 19 02:34
I feel like that far more has to be done for this game to come to a close. The stuff with tanaurak, the anak, esthera and of course the goddesses.
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 04:01
There's still all of Chapter 5 left, and chapters are long! All the pieces are on the board now, so you'll start seeing them come together in climactic ways.
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User #8176682 - 23 Nov 19 02:11
Will we see the new update for aram/eustrin before or during 2020
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sierralee - 23 Nov 19 03:57
This is a good question. The upcoming update isn't a huge one, so a month doesn't seem unreasonable to finish. On the other hand, I usually don't post updates around Christmas or New Years because I've found many patrons are busy. That means either rushing or waiting longer than necessary. I may set aside some time to try to finish another objective before the end of the year.
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User #6214130 - 25 Nov 19 08:57
Wait, does that mean that the next update IS the Aram/Eustrin update?
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User #6214130 - 23 Nov 19 10:22
I prefer the title The Last Sovereign 2: Arclentian Boogaloo. All jokes aside though, thanks for all of your hard work Sierra. Your work ethic is almost terrifying. I doubt i would find a harder working person on all of Patreon, even i went through every single content creator.
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User #13931693 - 24 Nov 19 04:17
Not a long time supporter discovered your work about 2 years ago and Ive got to say I'm loving it the detail in the decisions are amazing havent played the newer releases waiting for it to finish before I play it again but I'm really looking forward to it and hope to continue to support your development of work if its anywhere near the quality of TLS Keep up the good work love the game and You hahaha
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sierralee - 24 Nov 19 19:43
Whether you've been around a long time or since yesterday, I'm grateful for your support!
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User #7572638 - 23 Nov 19 00:11
I for one am looking forward to The Last Sovereign™ Sovereign Harder: Electric Boogaloo®
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User #18691073 - 23 Nov 19 00:42
Honestly, I absolutely love the long from that TLS has taken. Definitely the most hours I've put into the main story of a game, and it's not even completed yet. Probably my favorite RPG! You absolutely deserve the success you've had so far, and I hope your career continues to grow in the future. Thank you for the story you've given us, and I'm really looking forward to the conclusion! P.S. The Last Sovereign 2: Sovereign Harder will now stay on my wishlist forever
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User #3624012 - 23 Nov 19 00:09
Let me be the first to say that we love your work and we feel the effort you have put into TLS. For me personally, I was hooked on your first from the first chapter and when Simon refuses to take advantage of Aka; saying something along the lines of "I refuse to act in this way" that it was going to be special. It felt so different to other HRPGs and as the game grew bigger, you deconstructed HRPG tropes and rebuilt a world when they could actually exist and not just an excuse for porn. Now I barely care for it and I care more about the storyline and how we can influence the fate of nations via politics. I look forward to more TLS and can't wait to see how it ends
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User #6214130 - 23 Nov 19 09:00
I was personally hooked on the line "But I'll be damned if i let this world fall apart, just because i wanted to get my dick wet"
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User #3624012 - 23 Nov 19 09:07
That was probably the actual quote. Don't really have the time right now to check
Finished Scene Art Set #4
Finished Scene Art Set #4more_vert
2019-11-20T02:22:32+00:00
Post file flag
Finished Scene Art Set #4 2019-11-20T02:22:32+00:00close

Four more CGs are done, though in this case they only cover three scenes - if you look above, you'll see that the Stineford orgy received two different pieces of art. I figure that the game already has a massive number of CGs, so adding a few more for bigger scenes doesn't really increase the workload that much.

We're actually getting somewhat closer to finishing chapter one's scenes. The largest remaining hurdle is all the prostitute scenes, which have begun now. I considered not including those as lower priority scenes, but I'd like the first chapter to feel complete.

On that note, if someone wants to save me a bit of administrative time... could you make a list of which affection-locked scenes are possible in the first chapter? Whether or not we try to get all of those too will depend on the total number.

If you want to be involved with art going forward, just leave feedback on these posts.

Comments (15)
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User #10518194 - 20 Nov 19 03:25
Having Trin at first look surprised, only going to the over the top ahegao face when she realizes Simon views her as a necessary evil/tool would be pretty hilarious.
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sierralee - 20 Nov 19 04:20
There are actually several images for that scene, some along these lines!
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User #10518194 - 20 Nov 19 22:53
Sounds great, her eyes also have normal pupils here is that intended?
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sierralee - 20 Nov 19 23:45
Oh! I believe that's a continuity error that made it past everyone, thanks!
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User #664110 - 21 Nov 19 03:06
A human with vertical slit pupils eh?
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User #9829041 - 20 Nov 19 20:38
Simon's leotard in Trin's scene feels a bit weird. I don't know if it's the coloring or light effects, but it looks to me smoother, thinner and more skin-tight than that we can see of his undergarments on other images. (the stockings in the last image are also most probably very anachronistic, but I guess high fantasy allows for some artistic license) Everything's else is quite good, especially the very well-done facial expressions.
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sierralee - 20 Nov 19 23:47
Leotard? Anyway, his clothes might be a bit less rough than could be normally possible for the level of technology, but I'm allowing a degree of flex with magically-assisted textiles. People like their formfitting clothes, tights, etc.
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User #664110 - 21 Nov 19 03:04
Besides magic, IRL stockings have been around in some form since the 1400s, and silk since much earlier. Maybe there are silkworms in Darghelon. If Simon's shirt is well-made, that may be in part because when he's armored up to fight that shirt is his last line of defense before the skin. It's an investment in not dying.
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User #664110 - 20 Nov 19 04:30
Affection-locked seems to be the first ones for Aka, Yarra, Qum, and Hilstara... and Yarra+Trin. With some pretty questionable decision-making, it's possible to get Yarra to 75 before leaving Stineford, Yarra to 100 by the end of Chapter 1, or Qum to 75 by the end of Chapter 1. However, Yarra's Blue Rose 2F event and Yarra and Qum's Royal Chambers events don't account for these and don't give access to affection scenes past 50. Whether it should be like that is up to you, I guess. Plot scenes remaining seem to be Riala Prologue, Kai stuff, the very important Tal x Plant, Yarra Teasing, whoring (including Qum), and Bathing with Hilstara.
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sierralee - 20 Nov 19 14:55
Thanks! I'm okay with the events not accounting for some higher point scenes because I think they come off as more natural spread out over more in-universe time. So that's one scene each for the first four members... and Yarra+Trin, which had slipped past me. I forgot that one was in the first chapter. I do have a list of plot scenes. FYI, Yarra Teasing isn't planned to get a CG because I don't consider it an essential scene. Otherwise yes.
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User #4787752 - 20 Nov 19 14:10
Using the wiki to check by the end of chapter 1 you can get Yarra-100 Aka-73 Qum-81 Hilstaria-50 Megail-45 Trin-15
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sierralee - 20 Nov 19 14:55
Thanks for taking the time to count!
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User #4032419 - 20 Nov 19 15:06
Dammit, Trin should not be that cute. At least, not this early in the game. She's looking far too... soft, there. She doesn't get that soft until later. Also, why is she so cute? She's EVUL. Dammit.
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User #5097687 - 20 Nov 19 16:09
Seconded, Trin looks way to innocent, not at all like the mischievous firecracker we know her as. Also, her face and overall body are too slim for my imagination. At first look, I confused her with Elleani there.
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User #2540339 - 20 Nov 19 18:52
Bear in mind that she starts out snarky in this scene, then gets utterly overwhelmed by the hard dickings, then has a moment of letting her vulnerability show before enjoying some more gentle dickings. From what Sierra has said, the variants will show some of that emotional journey, so don't place too much weight on the specific expresssion in this one.
November 17 Update
November 17 Updatemore_vert
2019-11-17T22:28:18+00:00
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November 17 Update 2019-11-17T22:28:18+00:00close

I'm pleased to say that the new TLS update seems to be going well and the ridiculously long scene didn't seem to be too long for anyone. Normally I might push out a .1 version now, but since gameplay is mostly stable, I think I'll wait a little longer. Given a bit more time, I'll be able to add some additional content and fix a few of the more stubborn errors. $5 backers will get a notification when that's updated.

Meanwhile, I'm still thinking about turning the long scene into a short story. Part of me wants to put it up on Literotica, but I wonder if it wouldn't be mostly impenetrable to people who aren't familiar with the game. I could easily rewrite pieces to be more newcomer friendly, but if I got into describing characters... that way lies madness. I'm not sure whether I'll actually do anything with this.

Meanwhile, over a dozen pieces of art have been finished. There will be a $10 post with all of them, but image for this post is one of them I'm particularly happy with. I've said this before, but my goal is to hit some notes you don't see commonly.

Anyway, that's all for now. You might get a notification from me in a few days depending on your tier, but everybody will be hearing from me on an upcoming special day!


Media (1)


StinefordOrgy_small.png (433.3KiB)

Comments (23)
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User #4787752 - 18 Nov 19 06:27
Annikath as always not only gets the sexy of the scene but even more importantly gets the whole atmosphere with the facial expression and hand placements, so great work! And I now fully understand what you meant by it was going to be 'tough' to get pictures for the latest long sex scene, as it'd probably need more pictures then chapter 1 just to cover everything. I would say perhaps it'd be better to just have some sort of 'group picture' but even that doesn't sound easy with it being 20+ characters.
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 14:34
This one was tricky, with so many arms/hands! I'm glad you like it, because I quite enjoy the atmosphere. ^-^ I still haven't decided what will be done about the long scene, but I'm leaning toward just illustrating 1-2 of the more unique setups that capture the feel of the scene.
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User #9829041 - 18 Nov 19 19:59
I guess it could be possible to get creative with split screens to make the whole scene fit in "one" (composite and evolving) CG. For example, a four-sections screen with each important moment appearing clockwise, in turn, eventually replacing each other. Double thinking it, this wouldn't really reduce Annikath's workload by any significant amount, with the component pictures only marginally less detailed than a standard CG... But it may help the marathon scene stands out even more if used as marketing material. That makes me wonder: How often does Simon consume gems nowadays? Because his planning must be even harder to manage if he has to factor in that kind of event every week.
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 21:56
Honestly, I don't know if the art will actually bring in new patrons or if it will be mostly for fans. Either way, I don't think a play-by-play of this scene is reasonable, so I'll be thinking about potential alternatives. There aren't so many small shards that days like that are a regular occurrence. Simon's normal schedule involves many of the same elements, though, just with the sex less systematized.
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User #664110 - 18 Nov 19 22:41
I'm concerned that split-screen visuals, as well as too-inclusive group pictures, would render individual elements of those pictures too tiny in the window size of TLS. Or as noted man of culture Derek Zoolander would have it, "What is this? Porn for ants?"
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User #4787752 - 19 Nov 19 17:36
Oh you know what might be the best option SL? Just have be the scene be depicted by a very bored Vhala playing solitaire by herself. And then maybe sho reading a book with some big earplugs in.
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sierralee - 19 Nov 19 19:27
Haha, now I'm imagining that the scene is just Fuani and the other staff trying to do their work with their facial expressions mirroring what they're hearing as the scenes go on.
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User #4089879 - 17 Nov 19 22:42
If you started putting out erotica set in the TLS world, you'd probably do quite well. You've got one piece out there-- the one that introduced us to Wendis-- and it's outstanding. I'd suggest you go ahead and write it and accept that it's for the fans. Instead of exposition explaining the characters, write more short stories, erotic or otherwise, set in the TLS world. You could start by doing some vignettes that show critical points (e.g. one of the girls meeting or hearing about Simon) just to get them out there, and go back and expand them into proper stories later, which is also an opportunity to add ero scenes to the ones that miss them. Personally I'd absolutely love to read more fiction in the TLS world. If you eventually generate a body of stories that explain enough for people to figure things out then you've both got an outstanding erotic fiction setting *and* a doozie of an advert for the game.
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 00:01
Thanks for the input. If I do storify this scene, or write others, it will probably be in the gaps between other work. However, you may be happy to know that I have a number of TLS stories that I fully intend to write following the conclusion.
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User #4089879 - 18 Nov 19 04:45
This makes me happy indeed!
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User #6214130 - 20 Nov 19 21:19
I encountered another bug, though this was in my new playthrough. The chest with 50000 Sx from 0.47 appears in the Stineford Slum Slaver Stronghold, and Carina talks with Yarra about it, despite not having joined the party yet,
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User #664110 - 21 Nov 19 03:09
Are you on 0.47.1? I thought that was supposed to be fixed.
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User #6214130 - 21 Nov 19 09:18
Huh, must have missed that particular bug report. No i'm still in 0.47.0. My bad
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User #2909283 - 17 Nov 19 23:38
All I want for Christmas is Wendis wrecking the harem :P As for the scene, have you considered your Ao3 account? Maybe you could put all the game scenes in one "story" with a link directing people to it.
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 00:03
Honestly, I hadn't considered it. My AO3 account hasn't been active in a while, plus I think it tends to be focused toward specific fandoms.
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User #6214130 - 17 Nov 19 23:09
Hey Sierra, out of curiousity, will the next major update have the next investment round? I was planning on doing a new playthrough when that happened
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 00:02
Originally I was planning for the next update to be be the free roam one (including investment) but now I'm thinking it will be two updates from now.
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User #6214130 - 18 Nov 19 09:54
Cool! Good to know.
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User #9829041 - 17 Nov 19 23:40
Maybe just post in on Archive Of Our Own as a TLS "fanfic"? Nobody expects fanfics to make sense with no knowledge of the original show.
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sierralee - 18 Nov 19 00:04
As I noted in my comment just above, I hadn't considered this. While this would definitely prevent confusion, I think it would also be pretty well ignored. If I was doing something 100% for fans I could just distribute it directly.
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User #10518194 - 18 Nov 19 19:31
Yeah I only started using AOOO recently, but the only reason I used non character tags was to see if I could use a tag other than futa for the dickgirls in my fic. Turns out all tags other than futa are defunct so I just used futa. It speaks to the quality of Sierra's work that my distaste for herms and titjobs is irrelevant in the context of your games that actually have good gameplay and writing.
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User #664110 - 18 Nov 19 22:12
It's funny to me that a Grey Wolf writes the acronym as AOOO
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User #10518194 - 19 Nov 19 04:05
bork
TLS 0.47.0 Released 2019-11-15T23:42:43+00:00

New version out for this weekend!


NEW 0.47.1: https://mega.nz/#!T41R0CiC!kj4_xwsqeXfo91otSDB8sH8ko5hSWUi_vzcIm8TLbi4


OLD LINKS:

Link: https://mega.nz/#!7t9DyKSI!yeAU9a-G18KL-9Wdw6Uj7xiLX33t_J3kYravrtv9Luk

RTP: https://mega.nz/#!7g83WSxR!9riIQiX6rUTtdb0sVsERBAG8z2K_6T-a8qJPWhMgHsY


TLS 0.47.0

- Big Stineford update!

- Two new scenes, including the longest in the game by a fair margin.

- The first final party member sidequest is introduced, though it can't be finished yet.

TLS 0.47.1

- Bugfixing, typos, and minor improvements.

- The self-destruct attack now works, thanks to Decanter.

- The Ledger is now updated to the new version.

- Sprite animations now play when you access the bed.


Time for the Stineford update! This isn't the longest update in TLS history, or the most complex, or the most combat-intensive... but it has a decent amount of everything. Overall I'm quite pleased with this one, as I think it's a balanced update that will hopefully give everyone something to have fun with for a little while.

It should be in decent shape, but I started burning out on getting alt saves up to the fifth chapter, so I haven't done as many passes as usual. Let me know everything you run across.

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Comments (61)
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 00:32
Several of the accouterments in the basement underneath the pub are walkable over. I suspect the talky guard in the bank might be a distant relative of mine.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 01:40
Oh... there will be a lot of tile walkability errors.
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 01:51
I'll walk without rhythm... ...So I don't attract the worm.
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User #4157509 - 16 Nov 19 02:37
Shai Hulud! May his passage cleanse the tileset.
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 02:57
I am totally reassured that you are not a face dancer, Actual Personman. Watch out for that Triangle Man asshole.
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User #4787752 - 16 Nov 19 02:54
Why do I have the feeling you had the most massive grin on your face throughout the creation of a certain basement quest involving rats? Other then that great update, plenty of fun side stuff to explore for those who like to talk to every NPC and check out every tile. Other then the above mentioned walking stuff, I encountered 0 bugs. So great work SL! Oh and without a doubt the sex scene a the end was worth every word!
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 03:51
I definitely enjoyed creating the rats quest. =D Glad to hear you enjoyed the update, and that the massive sex scene wasn't too much.
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User #664110 - 15 Nov 19 23:59
What do you mean by "first final party member sidequest"?
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 00:21
One of my goals for the last chapter is for every party member to get a sidequest just for them. This update introduces the first of those.
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 01:05
So it doesn't refer to the mysterious promoter of 90's all female band tours or her friend the squirrel...
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User #664110 - 16 Nov 19 01:45
Ah. I don't think you've mentioned that goal publicly before, and it's easy to read that bullet point as you introducing the final party member.
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User #15235866 - 16 Nov 19 04:56
Beginning of the box: "That's right, we're doing what you're thinking." Middle of the next paragraph: "Only his power allowed his entire length to fill her comfortable, yet soon he was buried inside her to the hilt."
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 05:18
Got it fixed, thanks!
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User #8225764 - 16 Nov 19 08:10
I really enjoyed that, it felt like a return to the earlier parts of the game where you have so much to do at the start and you just got to figure out where to go. I can't wait for the open world segment to see how our decisions affect things. I really loved the ending scene, it was a lot of fun to read but it makes me wonder how you're going to incorporate Simon getting stronger by absorbing the shard into game play or if it'll remain a narrative device.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 13:05
Yeah, I wanted the return to Stineford to feel like a callback that simultaneously showed how much the party has grown. The open world update is going to be a lot of work, but hopefully also a lot of fun. The shards will have a key narrative purpose, obviously, but their effect on gameplay will be a bit limited.
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User #2909283 - 16 Nov 19 03:06
Ok, gonna meander for a bit. First, the only real bug I saw was I went back to the Tower portion of the mine and could run over the corruption stuff at the end (I had gone back figuring that was where to get Aka's supplies.) Second, I was highly disappointed with how Annah's portion went. No scissoring into the sunset with Andra, just more slowly eroding her Desecrationist ways. She'll be a Subsecrationist yet! Bit surprised she was so.... oblivious about everything around her. Elleani continues her inevitable march towards getting hot and heavy, hope it happens soon. Tangential to her, but it was surpising to me that when we dropped her off where she needed to go we didn't take care of a certain guard on the way out. Lack of Wendis in the final scene (and the update overall) surprised me. Once I got what it was gonna be I was seriously expecting her to be the last in line, or at least watching (And getting less "END IT ALL" in the process). I can only assume she's working hard to get to her own scenes, barring you doing something horrifying like making her go full kaiju. Duke was kinda dull, which I'm assuming was intentional. I was rooting for Donovan to be the Incubus King though, just to be done with him. Him or Ivanstan. I've done everything I can to destroy both and they keep coming back. Need to lock them in a room with Reletima. Speaking of Ivanstan, I'm assuming he and the Redlights (maybe the Magekillers too) are the ones squirreled away at Bandit's Pass. Seeing "disgraced bandits" mentioned made me immediately drop everything to punch him in the dick, but the pass was never explorable. Did I miss something or is that a seed for later? The magical webs tying into Renthnor just scream Anak manipulation, which is to be expected. The final scene was certainly quite entertaining, if not in the way I was expecting. I was secretly (well, not so secretly) hoping it was Wendis catching up on her sex deficit and unintentionally fulfilling Esthera's desire to see Simon's harem wrecked. Think I've got everything out of my head. Except for this. Yarra's not the one most ready for goddess fucking, I am. :P Edit: Always finding one more thing to say. Honestly with minor changes the final scene could easily be Simon's "Janine Ending" if we think of Sarai, Riala, and Janine's proposed Doomed King outcomes as endings.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 03:55
Thanks for giving your thoughts! Expect the tileset bugs to be fixed next version. Wendis was definitely watching the day's events with pleasure, but she's not ready for intimacy yet and that scene was primarily about the current harem. Trust me, she'll get scenes of her own. The reference to Bandit's Pass is indeed a seed for later!
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User #2909283 - 16 Nov 19 04:00
Curse you. I want Hilstara to punch Ivanstan in the dick NOW.
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User #5029794 - 16 Nov 19 05:13
Wow! Great update! I cannot believe how much stuff there was to do. Most of the bugs I found have been reported, but here's a picture of a typo: https://imgur.com/a/oxVSRv9 As for the rest, I really appreciated the references to Feroholm. I was recently just thinking about how sad it was that despite everything Simon's done he hasn't really been able to help out his hometown (Or whatever it is to him). So to have that addressed both with the discussion with Elleani and with his old flirtatious neighbor showing up looking for investors was really quite nice. I look forward to seeing some actual change there some update. Regarding Elleani, unless I'm misreading that line of hers that got interrupted, it would seem she has actually been engaged (or presumptively so) for some time! No wonder she's been feeling so guilty! She's supposed to marry...whoever it is...for the good of Givini but feels attracted to Simon. Here's to hoping whoever it is can be diverted elsewhere. And finally, I think my absolute favorite part of this update was the random guard inside the bank who philosophized at me for 10-20 boxes. There I was just casually talking to absolutely everyone on the off chance they were relevant and then he just took me hostage for something like 5 minutes! It was glorious. Forget the sex scenes: this is why I play TLS. :D
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 05:24
Glad you liked the update, and thanks for the report! Now that we're in the last chapter, you'll finally have a chance to invest in Feroholm. It's possible I gave one of Elleani's lines the wrong implication. She's expected to marry for the sake of New Givini, but isn't engaged to a specific suitor yet. I put a fair bit of work into that random guard and I had no idea how many/few people would talk to him. XD
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User #2909283 - 16 Nov 19 05:31
You put all that effort into the bank guard and yet the pervert at the academy gets off scot free? For shame!
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User #5029794 - 16 Nov 19 05:31
The line that had me thinking she was engaged to someone specific went something like, "Thanks for talking to me about this, I could never talk to... *convenient interruption*" It's in the library scene at the magic academy if that helps. I was probably reading too much into it and believing myself to be clever. I doubt it actually needs changing. As for the guard I thought it was actually pretty interesting. It definitely had me pause and think about the peculiar legal situation of arming privately employed individuals etc. It also just made me laugh really hard because of how long it went on, because there was simply no way that wasn't making a point. Thought provoking and humorous: The essence of TLS. :) Also, I loved the succubus having a nice dream in the tower basement. Clearly a reference to literature of the finest sort.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 12:52
There will be more with the Academy pervert eventually! Anyway, I'm glad those NPCs were enjoyed.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 00:42
Finally! Oh wait that sounds needy... I was totally not f5'ing patreon for a few hours. Anyways, you can instantly walk out of Stineford , go to the Succubus Tower and the conversation will act as if you already talked to the Duke.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 01:03
And pretty much every decoration in the succubus tower basement is non-blocking.
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 01:12
A lot of the stuff in the Ardan Succession Crisis and the Council of Gawnfall worked that way. The order in which you visit places is hard to predict.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 01:24
The meeting with the Duke is suggested as the first thing you should do, so I guess blocking exits out of Stineford until that happens might be an option? I guess it's not a big deal in the end.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 01:31
Also if you return to the Tower Mine after defeating the residual corruption, the crystal structures are non-blocking as well. Same for the bloody splats next to doors in the ransacked farm, you can walk into the walls there.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 01:44
Originally access to the succubus tower was going to be restricted until you'd talked to the Duke, but I changed that late in the process. I think I'll just change the trigger for that event, unless there are more things that falsely assume you've spoken to the Duke. Tile errors: fixed, thanks! Those blood spatters... unless they accidentally changed at some point, I think those have been bugged ever since that version of the game.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 02:03
After defeating the orc Incubus King, you can return to the Devil's Pass and Yarra will initiate the same conversation as the first time. Also the shard hovers in there as if Simon just didn't bother to pick it up, heh. And a minor suggestion: wasn't the guard corpse present there in the original visit? Is it possible to turn it into a skeleton? It's been years...
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 02:14
Yeah, you weren't supposed to be able to return there. As for skeletons... sure, why not? It looks like there was also one guard I missed, so that would be a bug if the player skipped it the first time.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 03:59
Finished the update. Final chain orgy good! On the other hand I feel grossly manipulated by that thing you did when Yarra hears Megail praising her, that is exploitation.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 04:07
Glad you liked the ending! On Yarra/Megail, I know which part you mean, but I'm actually not sure what reaction you're conveying there.
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User #6216065 - 16 Nov 19 04:53
My outrage at being forced to d'awww. I also may or may not have sprayed wine on the monitor.
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User #19824953 - 16 Nov 19 01:47
The candles in the new basement of the Keeper's Tavern can be walked over as well. Other then that I've had a lot fun so far. Definitely been worth the wait!
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 02:00
Those should be fixed next version. Glad you're enjoying the update!
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User #5341776 - 16 Nov 19 03:05
There's a repetition in the shard absorbing scene when Nalili says: "Ooh, I can't wait until ..."
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 03:52
Fixed, thanks!
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User #9140699 - 16 Nov 19 06:21
A nice "little" update. Nothing crazy but still fulfilling. Feels like a good strong start to the meat of the chapter (last section felt like a prologue/intro). More thoughts: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1K7_Z8Xb2H5OYVTgR8bsGRXDD9mY1kfimW95zI5Dbdgk/edit
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 12:59
Thanks for giving all your thoughts! I don't have a lot to say in response, but you laid out all the bugs really clearly. The one with the NPC disappearing at the beginning I've fixed from the previous section but not the waiting room.
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User #9829041 - 16 Nov 19 14:20
Great update. As for bugs, outside the many immaterial objects already reported, you can return to Devil Pass after defeating the minor King as if he was still alive. EDIT: Already reported just above actually.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 15:15
Should be fixed next version. Glad you liked the update!
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User #4340238 - 16 Nov 19 01:53
*Depth's Wisp C used Self Destruct* O.O
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 02:01
^-^
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User #4340238 - 16 Nov 19 02:43
Was hoping we'd get to shag Annah at the end, but oh well. At least she's opening up a fraction of a fraction - and the Chapter's still open for her to get a good ragging.
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User #6214130 - 16 Nov 19 12:11
Dick move Sierra. I had to replay the last 10 minutes. TEN MINUTES!!
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User #3302120 - 16 Nov 19 07:05
Well another fun update, most of the good bugs were taken but here are some I found Minor Bugs TLS 0.47.0 Succubus Hideout B1 Monument Typo. Yarra "I think the biggest thread to the tower is political now." Probably "biggest threat" The Tent Hobo in the Slums still talks about the Council... Just seems odd that sex trafficking is going on right behind his Tent an he is oblivious to it :P Duke's Mansion, should the two Butlers be blocking the side paths? Seems the one on the right has eyes in the back of his head as he cleans the table lol You can walk on the candles in the new and improved Tavern Basement After the investigation into Church Money Laundering you are teleported back to the Blue Rose INN room with Sarai. However if you rescued Lucy then you are plopped right on top of her...
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User #7393692 - 16 Nov 19 08:23
Addendum to succubus tower: If you go there straight away, Simon tells Succubus Leader that they already talked to the Duke and he asked about negotiations, but that never happened. Another thing is that in the succubus tower in the Lustlord shrine dialogue he is uncapitalized, typo.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 13:01
Glad you enjoyed it, and thanks for the reports! The butlers were indeed meant to block the side paths.
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User #485234 - 16 Nov 19 07:48
Played through the update. There's was surprisingly a lot to do. Not sure what the values needed for the final choice, but could theoretically swing it a lot. It's interesting, how direct approach is definitely better against Annah, than a subtle one. Also it looks like past investment Succubus Tunnels plays a big role here. Haven't read "words woods words" at the end yet. But i think i'll do it later today.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 13:03
Glad you enjoyed it! I did my best to balance the final segment, but I'll be curious what all the detail-intensive people think about it once there's time to look at it in more detail.
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User #6214130 - 16 Nov 19 12:17
Great update. Always nice to revisit places that i first saw years ago on my first playthrough, and see how far Arclent has come. I encountered a gamebreaking bug. I returned to Devil's Pass because i feared i had missed something before the Incubus King cutscene teleported me out. The game doesn't allow me to leave the tunnels again, as Simon says something along the lines of "we still have to find the Incubus King". The same dialogue also plays on the overworld map when you approach the Pass, even if you've already killed him.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 13:06
Glad you enjoyed it! That bug will be fixed next version, so for now you have to avoid the entrance after the IK is dead.
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User #178986 - 16 Nov 19 06:15
Is the steel for Aka's dagger not available yet? The way the conversation goes with Rilia & weapon show owner makes it sound like you need to collect in the tower during this current update
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 12:53
I do see how that might mislead. You can't get the steel yet, but Riala meant that you can get tools for them.
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User #178986 - 16 Nov 19 06:40
Also, error. If you reenter the mine after you killed the Jr. IK. You cant leave.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 12:59
Yeah, this will be fixed next version. For now you have to avoid it after the first time.
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User #2909283 - 15 Nov 19 23:56
Steam dinged, and I knew my evening was just beginning.
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 00:20
Have fun!
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User #15235866 - 16 Nov 19 03:24
Great update! Bugs not yet reported, etc.: In the intro dialogue with Sarai, Yarra says “polishing the alter” instead of altar. Definitely a missed opportunity for a snide comment in the beginning when Nalili suggests Sarai be seen restricting the party ;) Vhala's conversation in Sarai's room when you speak with her: Ardoford instead of Ardford; The music stops after you kill the rats until you leave the tavern; Simon’s sprite ends up on top of Lucy’s after telling Sarai about the stolen donations; Twice, the text doesn’t fit in the box when speaking with the contact in the magic shop about magical ingredients. During “the scene,” during Wynn’s scene you have “comfortable” when I think you mean “comfortably.” And is Aka’s knife the sidequest? Or did I miss something?
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sierralee - 16 Nov 19 04:01
Glad you liked it, and thanks for all the reports! Only two notes: 1) The music stopping was meant to be part of the joke. 2) I'm going to need a more specific note, like the beginning of a life, for the Wynn comfortable typo. And yes, Aka's knife is the sidequest.
November 10 Update 2019-11-10T20:52:52+00:00

The DStP launch has gone okay. It's sitting at 3.5, which is average for new games but worse than my previous titles on Newgrounds. Total plays are above average but hardly explosive.

It's a bit encouraging that a reasonable number of people who don't know me at all find the core gameplay fun. There are also a reasonable number of complaints. I don't think this gameplay loop is necessarily a divisive one, so I think that's a sign that there are things that need to be improved. I don't have any real insight on that account yet, though.

Anyway, that's only occupying part of my attention, so I have good news: I can now be pretty confident that the TLS update will be released on Friday. Probably in good shape too, though with an update across this many maps I'm sure I'll neglect some details.

You guys better like that long sex scene you were enthusiastic for. Edited and placed into the game, it's over 70 boxes long (and behind the scenes, it has eight conditional statements). This is going to be the longest in the game by a wide margin. I'm still considering making it a short story, though I don't know how accessible it would be to non-fans.

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Comments (10)
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User #664110 - 10 Nov 19 21:53
Let me guess at the nature of the new scene: Wendis choose-your-own-adventure sequence based around which girls you and your husband choose for your reintroduction to sexuality! Pick the right ones for maximum regained sanity! (Not really.)
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 02:59
If I added a CYOA element to a scene this expansive, that would be... a lot.
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User #485234 - 11 Nov 19 05:51
That sounds awesome. Also i am not sure if this was mentioned in the bug reports, but after the end of Fucklord War, when you try to access Reserach by talking to Riala, the window simply closes without any further reaction.
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 15:16
She's probably missing a conditional branch to give her a new line for that. Unfortunately, right now I don't remember what that would need to be, but I'll try to get it figured out. Thanks for the report.
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User #6214130 - 11 Nov 19 02:07
How your fingers haven't fallen off from writing this much, i will never understand, Sierra
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 03:00
Haha, I do my finger exercises and pray I avoid carpal tunnel. But otherwise, I'm quite happy to be doing what I love!
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User #10518194 - 11 Nov 19 05:55
I can barely get out 16k words of smut in a month, meanwhile Sierra just put out a side project that is a 300,000 word novel on top of OEA, NGM, SC, DSTP, and soon a TLS update. I'm in awe at the size of your productivity, it reminds of that meme about Sanderson stealing Martin and Rothfus writing speed. Though I can't really see anyone as your peer considering the variety and quality of your works.
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User #4787752 - 10 Nov 19 23:05
Longest sex scene ever: Everyone, "Yeah yeah yeah!" Annikath somewhere fingers bleeding from drawing chapter one, "noooooo."
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 02:59
Yeah, this one is completely impossible to represent in a single image. I don't know how we'll handle it art-wise.
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User #664110 - 14 Nov 19 07:16
Okay hear me out: two images.
Don't Save the Princess: Public Demo 2019-11-08T23:19:28+00:00

There was a time when I was hoping to get the TLS update out today, but it became clear that wouldn't be possible. Instead, I think it's finally time to stop tinkering and just subject DStP to the acid test. The demo with the first two worlds is now available on Newgrounds:

https://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/741269


If you've never played before, now would be a good chance. If you have a NG account and usually support my releases there, I'd appreciate your votes. Setting somewhat comparable conditions to my other games there would be good for evaluating the numbers.

I'm not sure what to expect, but I'll consider this a referendum on my direction for the game so far. Based on the overall response, I'll decide where to take this project. That would mean either trying to hammer out the core creative work this year or changing gears in 2020.

Anyway, back Sunday, hopefully with good news.

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Comments (22)
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User #2497791 - 10 Nov 19 09:31
acid test failed for me on Seamonkey/Firefox, running fine on Edge though. I feel like the difficulty in 1-7 rises suddenly, since before that you can just spam -> without consequences. Also I didn't understand how to fire that special. Guess I missed the introduction? *shrug* So while I think the story is fun, I guess the gameplay is not suiting my mental skills. But don't get discouraged by that, that's really a personal thing.
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sierralee - 10 Nov 19 17:00
Thanks for the feedback! When you say it failed, what specifically happened - the game didn't load at all? The special is fired with Space when the meter is full.
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User #2909283 - 8 Nov 19 23:51
So..... what you're saying is Annah has barricaded herself in her room and refuses to come out till her sex scene gets a rewrite?
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User #4787752 - 9 Nov 19 00:25
Honestly Annah would be funny, but personally I am hoping that it is Wendis making up for 3 decades of forced chastity. (Or Mestan finally wearing down Simon pesky hetero sexuality.)
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User #2909283 - 9 Nov 19 01:34
We all know who that big scene is for, but there's no rule saying Annah and Andra still can't scissor into the sunset.
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User #10518194 - 9 Nov 19 05:17
One vote for Mestan, preferably by using the gender changing magic mentioned by Trin's counterpart, seducing Simon. I realize I made a post not too long ago saying that more focus on male characters other than Simon would be welcome but somehow I think Mestan might find it a welcome diversion.
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User #943840 - 10 Nov 19 18:58
Constantly spamming -> to deny Runman coins got pretty uncomfortable, to the point that I just stopped playing once my hand actively started to hurt (right after the first lever where Runman gets the 2nd health bar). The rest of the gameplay was fun, trying to set up strong damage combos could be cool, but it's hard to muster motivation to continue playing a game that was actively painful to interact with.
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 03:02
Thanks for leaving feedback! You're not the only person to strongly dislike the coin mechanic, but I haven't figured out what I want to do with it.
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User #4665680 - 13 Nov 19 07:16
Story was good, gameplay was pretty good, the coin collecting definitely caused some finger strain. If I could remap it to left-mouse or something it might feel better. I stopped part way through world 2, but I'd be tempted to try again in the next version. Probably too late in the process to reimagine this part, but to me it felt like it might be better with "launcher" upgrades instead of "rhythm" upgrades. Like instead of "slightly wider crit range" you might have "increase chance of this threat spawning". Stuff like that, where you can focus more on the traps you like, and create more organic combos.
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sierralee - 13 Nov 19 16:14
Thanks for leaving feedback! Something along "launcher" lines isn't impossible - I actually had similar plans in my initial design document, but I wanted to do a basic proof of concept first.
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User #664110 - 14 Nov 19 07:17
That would fit narratively under Plum taking over management of Darkland's defenses.
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User #4089879 - 9 Nov 19 06:01
I can't figure out what I am supposed to be doing with the coins in DSTP. If I hit the right arrow he grabs a coin and the counter increments, so I assume that is good. If I hit the up arrow he takes damage, which I gather is good, but it's not clear if I want him to earn coins or not; if I am opposed to him presumably I wouldn't want that, but the game text ("you have earned X coins") seems to suggest I want that?
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User #4089879 - 9 Nov 19 06:11
OK, I think I get it. The premise is if you stop Runman you get the coins taken from his body. So the idea is to let him get as close as possible to the Princess and then kill him, so you get the max coins.
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User #2540339 - 9 Nov 19 12:49
It's more like if you hit the right arrow, the coin is yoinked away from his grasp and into your coffers. If, however, he reaches it before you do so, then he collects it and inevitably spends it on shoes.
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sierralee - 9 Nov 19 13:38
All your actions are opposed to Runman, either taking coins away from him or causing objects to hit him.
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User #4089879 - 9 Nov 19 16:04
Ah, got it, thanks. But since I can only steal coins when he's approaching them, I still want to let him get as close as possible before dying. Although after the first few levels that really doesn't apply, the little bastard is so hard to kill I'm just hitting him as hard as I can. I like that you keep the coins even in failure, it's a nice smooth mechanism for powering up the defenses and allowing the game to adjust itself to your skill level (since a poor player ends up getting more coins per level due to more replays, which in effect gives him a handicap). Pretty slick.
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User #9829041 - 9 Nov 19 11:32
> 2019 > Newgrounds *One Google search later* So, the site got a mini-revival due to Tumblr banning porn? History sure loves its twists.
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sierralee - 9 Nov 19 13:39
Yeah, it feels like a bit of a throwback, but I don't know of any other flash game style site that allows adult content.
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User #664110 - 9 Nov 19 20:59
Seems you either die young or live long enough to see venerable institutions called "throwback".
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User #2504558 - 11 Nov 19 02:30
Finally managed to finish this game—I had better luck with the browser version in Newgrounds than the last Mac desktop version I tried. I love, love Princess Plum as a character and the story you're telling about her efforts to escape Runman and the Kingdom of Shoes. Her romance with Dragogai is cute and I love how even a simple story like this, you sneak in some world building. The game play is interesting, as I've not played an anti-runner before, though it wears on me after a while. I've noticed the current story to level ratio is about 2 levels for one scene of story. I'd probably prefer 1:1 - fewer levels to make an overall shorter game. I'm not sure I'd want to play terribly many worlds of the length of the two available in the demo, personally.
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sierralee - 11 Nov 19 03:03
Thanks for the feedback! I'm sorry to hear that the game element is basically a negative for you, but we'll see if we can't improve it for the final product.
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User #2504558 - 12 Nov 19 00:38
Negative is a strong word! I enjoy the game play, but in small doses.
November 3 Update 2019-11-03T23:28:22+00:00

Well, I had a really long run of pure productivity, but all good things must come to an end. I'm still writing content I like, but I've been seriously slowed down by an issue with how it all comes together at the end of the Stineford update. I'm not sure whether or not this will be an impediment to release or just a temporary stumbling block.

Meanwhile, other stuff!

The Brightest Shadow: I think Patreon didn't mess with anyone this time, so $10 patrons should have access to the book here. I'll open a later draft up to $5 patrons as well.

Don't Save the Princess: I don't want to spam people with updates, so I'll just note that the past post has been updated. You can now play PC, Mac, and web versions with more bugfixes.

Back on the subject of TLS, there's a problem that's... sort of not a problem? This update ends in a sex scene that I knew was going to be long and considered expanding into a short story. Unfortunately, even the first version I wrote is the size of a story: three or four times the size of any other scene in the game. I guess that's fine, but it's going to be a lot of boxes.

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Comments (25)
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User #1001252 - 4 Nov 19 03:29
Well you have proven your writing prowess time and time again. So, because of that, you are one of the few developers that I have no problem with reading a wall of text in your game. Of course, it being a sex scene helps this as well :).
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User #4089879 - 4 Nov 19 00:39
Bring on the boxes! :)
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User #10518194 - 4 Nov 19 04:25
I think at this point we can trust you that a long scene won't simply be a excessive number of gratuitous descriptions of secondary sexual characteristics or a ridiculous number of position changes. Although I honestly wouldn't mind that anyways.
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sierralee - 4 Nov 19 05:19
Well, in the middle I just repeat "tits tits tits" several thousand times. But in all seriousness, this one is really wide-ranging. Hopefully players will feel it's justified.
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User #435478 - 4 Nov 19 08:01
It is Cumdump? Repeating tits over and over during the sex? Or Yarra, cheering, using tits like college kids use chug? XD In all seriousness, I can TOTALLY see Yarra chanting "tits" over and over like a college frat kid. Only she wouldn't need to actually be drunk... just trying to get Robin (I FINALLY remembered her name!) and/or Carina to join a wet T-shirt contest. And Qum would ABSOLUTELY be cheering, pompoms and all. ...I've just envisioned an "IRL fanfiction" version of the harem - Robin the studious nerd, Carina the church girl, Yarra the head cheerleader, Qum the "sweet" but fairly stupider cheerleader sidekick, Aka the sporty girl, Hilstarra the security guard, Megail the treasurer of some committee, Nalili the spoiled daughter of one of the major donors, Iris the secretary of the committee Megail is on, Altina the enviornmentalist, Varia the punk rocker, Riala the physics