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Dicey Dungeons 0.15

December 25, 2018
[Play Dicey Dungeons 0.15 here]

Merry Christmas, everyone! Ho ho ho! I bring presents!

It’s been a while since the last Dicey Dungeons update. Thank you for your patience! The whole team has been working really hard on this one, and we’re very excited to finally share it. Let’s see what’s new!

Quests

The heart of this update is the game’s new quest system. Quests are alternate game modes for each character, evolved from the old guild system. They’re about showing you a new side of each character, making you think differently about them, while providing some interesting challenges on the way!

Each quest is a tweak to the basic rules - there’s one for the Warrior that makes you lose max HP when you level up, one for the thief that lets you keep enemy equipment, one for the Witch that gives you a predictable sequence of dice, and lots more. I’m eventually planning to have 36 of them, six for each character (this build has 20).

Still to come is the “progression” side of this system, where quests, characters and content are unlocked as you play through the game. Since this is a very separate problem to the actual quest design, I figured I’d take the time to think about it properly - so for this version, everything is open and unlocked right from the start.

Smarter Enemies

Most of my own time since the last update was spent on this: figuring out how to make the enemies smarter. I wrote a very in-depth blog post about it here, but basically: you can now just rely on the enemies in Dicey Dungeons to make smart moves - no more exploits and weird edge cases. It just works!

Lots of art improvements

Since the last update, Marlowe has been focused on doing a huge polish pass on all the game’s artwork! This includes new animated backgrounds for every scene, animated player characters, and just lots and lots of subtle improvements to basically everything in the game.

In addition to that, thanks to our programmer Justo, we now have proper 4K support! If you’re playing the game on a 4K screen, it should automatically detect that and use 4K textures everywhere! (You can try toggling these on and off by going into the settings on the main menu.)

Tooltips, Enemy Move previews, and animation speed controls

We’re not planning to tackle the actual tutorial until the next version of the game, but this version finally introduces a few very helpful tutorial-esque features for new players. You can now mouse over status effects to see what they do, preview the enemy moves on your own turn, and slow down the combat animations until you get the hang of how things work!

Underlying tech improvements

This probably won’t matter to most players, but anyone interested in modding should be very excited about this update! This version moves lots of the game’s internal data into spreadsheets, making it possible to access and modify all sorts of things that weren’t possible before - quest data, level up rewards, rule tweaks, equipment actions, and more. Even better, lots of this runs off a fully programmable hscript interpreter - so you can, for example, design equipment that messes with in game variables.

The documentation for all this isn’t there yet, and the in-game editor is still running behind the what the mod system is actually capable of - but if that doesn’t deter you, then check it out!

New Translations

Two new translations this time, Japanese and Traditional Chinese! Our Japanese translation is by Go Endo of Kakehashi Games, while our Traditional Chinese translation is by whiteblack.

As always, all translations are in alpha, and some are more complete than others! One of the great things about doing localisations for a game while it’s in development is that I can get feedback on it as we go, and iterate on that to make all of the localisations as great as they can possibly be. If you have any feedback on any of the translations, I’d love to hear it! (I have a place to give feedback for translation issues here!)

So what about v0.16?

I’m planning to basically take the rest of the year off now, and start thinking about v0.16 in the new year.

The next big thing on my radar is to finally start making some progress on our story, and maybe adding some very short cutscenes to the game. I’m excited to see how that goes! We’re also planning to reintroduce and finalise the Jester as one of the main cast (they’re absent from this build while I try to figure them out). Also, very excited to show you what Chipzel’s been working on recently for the audio side of things…

If you’ve somehow found yourself reading this blog post without having played the game, then I’ve got good news! The alpha of Dicey Dungeons is currently part of itch.io’s winter sale, with 20% off! This is your last chance to get the game cheap, since the game won’t be on sale again until after it launches!

Thanks for playing. See you next year!


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