Working on some new content today – a new newbie town. I’ve got some new NPC tech that’s making it a lot of fun to work on. Here’s some screenshots:
NPCs can now wander around, which means the cows in the pasture are no longer stationary automatons. They can walk around, eat, sit, and so on. This really makes them a lot more lifelike... but makes it almost impossible to get a good screenshot. You can see three cows in this picture if you look closely. Each cow can be milked once per hour (per player).
As I head over to another barn, I'm informed that the moon is nearly full. That's bad news, since I'm a werewolf, and for testing purposes the moon cycle lasts 8 hours instead of 28 days. I'm gonna be a slavering monster soon... which makes milking cows impossible, among other issues.
The lady in front of this barn is complaining about a bear that's taken up residence in it. I eventually convince her that I can handle it for her. How hard can it be? I'm a friggin' fire wizard...
Holy... he took all my armor off in seconds... run away!
Group-statted grizzly bear! Runnnnn... *thunk*. To defeat this bear, it'd take three newbies working together. My hope is that little encounters like this can teach players to work together from an early point in the game: "Hey, somebody help me kill the grizzly in this barn!"
A couple of elves run the alchemy shop. In the background you can just make out a glowing globe -- that's a lore item. Let's head upstairs...
In the far attic of the shop, all alone, sits a little teaching automaton. (Elves use these to teach their children.) I'll just go say hi to him...
And now we see why the thing is stored in the attic! It's a math tutor, and it's running a word-problems training program. Yuck. But if you get the problem right, you get a piece of candy! ... well, everybody finds fun in their own way, right?
And then it happened... I became the wolf. Now NPCs are afraid of me.
Nope, still right here, moron! The "being afraid" system is tricky to work on, because it needs safeguards to keep it from annoying other players. (For instance, if another player is shopping, the shopkeeper won't run away in fear; they'll just scream.) The down side of these safeguards is that they can't run very far -- you can chase them around their shop, but not out into the wilderness. But it's really the thematic effect that matters.
More pictures soon!