Dragon and the Djinn - BETA TESTERS NEEDED

Dragon and the Djinn, by Athar Fikry

Everyone knows the story. The young man who came out of nowhere to become the Emir of Ghariba when the previous ruler went missing. The djinn who helped him by granting wishes. The Grand Vizier Jaafar, whose noble birth and political skill placed him in the palace at the Emir’s right hand.

What they don’t know is what happened next - and that’s where you come in.

A dragon has appeared, threatening the safety of Ghariba and its new emir’s precarious reign.

You have a destiny. You’re not sure yet what it will be: perhaps you will protect the city, or become the greatest wielder of magic in the land, or gather enormous wealth.

You also have a sister. She believes that it is her destiny to slay the dragon, with a magic sword made by the warrior Iskander who has traveled from a far-off land in search of legendary creatures to fight.

Most importantly of all, you have a djinn, given to you by Jaafar himself. Your djinn will help you achieve your destiny by granting your every wish…or so you hope.

Navigate the politics of palace, court, and city; make allies - or enemies - among the people; all while the dragon soars overhead, threatening Ghariba more with every passing day. To find your way forward, you’ll have to use your magic, your wits, your courage, your faith, and of course, your djinn.

Will you help your sister slay the dragon? Will you try to slay it yourself? Or will you try to befriend it, learning deeper secrets of magic and the city’s past? Or will you simply take advantage of the chaos to make yourself the richest person in Ghariba?

Be careful what you wish for…

Directions for beta testing:

Email us, beta AT choiceofgames for access. (This changed several months ago, so take note if you haven’t beta tested in a while.)

Do not send DMs/PMs through the forum mail system, Discord, text message, carrier pigeon, or any other method than email.

When you send your EMAIL, include:

  • the game you want to test in the Subject line of the email.
  • your forum-name
  • your real name (first and last)
    –if your family/surname comes first, please indicate that. I will assume that your given name is listed first unless you tell me otherwise.

When we receive your email, you will go into a queue. As we post new drafts, we admit more people from the queue. When you have been admitted to the beta, we will send you a link, a username, and a password as a reply to your email. Please don’t worry if it takes a few days or more for you to hear from us: if there are a lot of testers, the queue may be long; and we can’t confirm receipt of every request. Please do not email us multiple times about joining a beta.

When you have feedback to submit:

  • Return feedback to beta@choiceofgames, preferably part of the same email thread/chain, rather than a new one.
  • Please send screenshots or copy/pasted quotes as often as you can; it helps us track down whatever observation you’re making. In particular, the author may see things that you don’t, and/or the screenshot may contain more information than you realize.
    If you’re submitting feedback using the Bug/Submit button in the game, make sure you include your handle/name in the body of the email. The Submit button obscures your email address, and I can’t give you credit for feedback if I don’t know who you are.

DO NOT POST ASKING WHAT THE BETA EMAIL ADDRESS IS. The first test to becoming a beta tester is inferring what it is based on the above paragraph.

Lastly, you cannot be testing two games at once. Send feedback on one and you can apply to another.

Tips on How to Give Feedback
I’m looking for “high level” and “low level” feedback. Not mid-level feedback.

Low-level = typos and continuity errors. A continuity error is when a character’s gender flips, or someone comes back from the dead, or you run into a plotline that just doesn’t make sense (because it’s probably a coding error).

For these low-level issues, screenshots are very helpful. If you see a problem, take a screenshot, or copy and paste the text that is in error, and email that.

“High level” feedback has to do with things like plot, pacing, and characters. “Scene A didn’t work for me because x, y, and z,” is useful feedback. “B character was entirely unsympathetic, because u, w, and v,” is also useful feedback.

“Mid-level” feedback describes things like grammar, style, word choice, or the use of commas. As I said above, I do not want mid-level feedback. In particular, DO NOT WRITE TO ME ABOUT COMMAS.

“I had a great time and saw only a few spelling errors,” is not useful feedback. In fact, it’s the sort of thing that results in you not being given access to future betas.

Some examples of useful feedback:

In Choice of the Dragon, you get to choose what type of wings you have: leather or scaled. Someone wrote in and asked about having feathered wings. Great suggestion! Done!

In “The Eagle’s Heir,” someone asked about Eugenie. They said that the romance moved too quickly–because she only appeared in the last third of the game–and wished they could have had an opportunity to meet her earlier. So the authors added an opportunity to meet her and start the romance earlier in the game (in a scene that already existed).

In “Demon Mark: A Russian Saga” several people commented on how the PC’s parents were unsympathetic, so the authors added a choice or two to deepen the relationship with the parents in the first chapter, to help better establish their characters.

Similarly, pointing out a specific choice and saying, “this is who I imagined my character was at this particular moment, and none of these options seemed right for me. I would have liked an option to do X instead,” is also really helpful feedback.

Another useful piece of feedback: if you choose an #option and then the results of that #option don’t make sense. Like, if you thought an #option might test one stat, but it seems to have tested a different one.

20 Likes

This is to announce the beta testing, not discuss the game.

New draft! Just a tiny continuity fix with some repeated text in Ch 1.

This is version 25578.

New draft! Changelog includes:

  • Assorted typos fixed
  • Clarifications about how language works in Ghariba
  • Thief no longer appears out of nowhere in ch 3
  • PC’s motivations no longer change mid-battle.
  • At the end of the game, the dragon no longer alternates between being alive and dead. (This was a tricky bug to fix, so please keep an eye out for its recurrence!) [EDIT: Oops, sorry - this one hasn’t actually been fixed. We have identified the cause, though, so if you do notice it happening, don’t worry; we’re on the case!]

This is version 25582

4 Likes

NEW DRAFT! Lots and lots of updates in this one! Changelog includes:

  • MAJOR stat overhaul: several stats have been combined into Performance and Subterfuge; and Impulsive/Deliberate has been expanded to cover more situations. This should clear up some of the confusion over which stat was being tested when, and should make some late-game stat tests easier to pass.
  • in Ch 3
    —if you’ve already met Parveen in ch 2, it doesn’t act like it’s your first time meeting her
    —no bottle in your pocket if it wasn’t there before
  • in Ch 6
    —if you free your djinn here, then you can’t make a wish afterwards
    —edited the meeting with Murad for clarity and consistency
  • in Ch 7 if you leave the palace, the continuity afterwards is now improved
  • in Ch 12, if you’re trying to save the dragon and don’t already know who the dragon really is, your djinn explains it.

We are still working on the continuity issues, especially near the end of the game, especially ESPECIALLY the bit in Ch 13 where the dragon alternates between being alive and dead. If you happen to catch one of these errors in your playthrough, please do still note it, but also, never fear - we’re already trying to fix them!

This is version 25616

3 Likes