Honor Bound: Creme de la Creme 4—Protect a boarding school as a military bodyguard! [Ch 5 public/Ch 6 Patreon, updated Apr 8]

I’ve pushed an update to Dashingdon and itch which should hopefully fix @Mei_Hiroshi’s issue.

If folks hit similar bugs (or any bugs, of course!) please do carry on letting me know - it’s really helpful even if you think someone else has mentioned it already. Especially please let me know if it happens on itch as well: if itch turns out to be more reliable in the long term, I’m considering whether it would be better to migrate to it entirely or upload the compiled game file here in conjunction with a link to the text files in Drive or something for reference. Not sure yet though!

Anyway, this update also includes some tweaks that I’d intended to sit on for the next chapter update, so those are now up early: the conversations Fiore has with a trans PC have been expanded a bit and there’s a little bit of an expanded response when a trans PC finds out that Fiore’s trans too. And the quiz and some Royal Affairs references are updated to reflect some actions taken by the Royal Affairs PC during the expanded epilogue, as well as a small added reflection of the Royal Affairs’ PC’s popularity in Teran.

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edit: got the exact details

I’m not sure if this has been tweaked, but as a trans protagonist who transitioned after moving away from town, the conversation with Fiore (when inviting them to stay up with you) has a slight error after selecting the “I think I probably always knew, but I realized properly when I was an adult.” choice.

On the next page, the dialogue repeats and Fiore says "I “I did wonder if you were like me,”

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That’s probably a typo or something else I did by accident when editing that conversation - thank you very much, I’ll sort that tomorrow!

No problem! And may I say, I really love that conversation in general while playing as a trans character. It feels like such an authentic and rewarding moment of connection.

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Fixed now! (and I’ve fixed the broken sm_init command that I’d accidentally left in the itch version too)

I’m incredibly pleased to hear it! As part of that addition, I also expanded some chat with the PC, Fiore, and Matia in Chapter 6 which was a lot of fun to write. Most of these chats come up with the trans NPCs (and the trans NPCs talk about it much more with trans PCs than cis ones) but there are currently a few references with Denario too.

For a number of reasons it has been a bit of a journey getting more confident about writing characters talking about the PC or themselves being trans, feeling out how I want to do it and how and where shared experiences/recognition comes up, and it’s not a journey I’ve completed yet (it’s probably not possible to complete, and of course nothing’s perfect and it may not resonate with everyone - there isn’t really much about dysphoria, for example, because that isn’t something I want to explore in detail currently). When I’m writing these interactions I think a lot about how conversations we have in the real world when talking to other trans people about ourselves might shift if we lived in societies which treated it in a personally-celebratory but culturally-ordinary way.

Honestly I am inspired by things like this comment about Drink Your Villain Juice! to nudge myself to do more of it.

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Well I’m happy to hear I’ve been a bit of a reason to do it for you. Love this story for those same reasons, being trans actually mattering and other trans characters and having talks or comments with them, it’s all very wonderful to me :slight_smile:

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I keep getting this error is it the end of content or an error?

It’s an error, thank you for letting me know! It’s a bit of a pesky one because I can’t replicate it on my local version, though I can replicate it on Dashingdon. Can I check if that screenshot is from Dashingdon or itch please?

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It’s from dashingdon

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Thank you so much! I am not entirely sure what’s going wrong there as I’ve tried playing the current Dashingdon version myself (skipping straight to Chapter 4) and the error isn’t firing, so that’s a bit weird and my sick+sleep-deprived brain is not coming up with a definite reason for it. Please could you try clearing your browser cache and forcing the game to start over with the restart button, then skipping or playing to that point?

Alternatively there is playing the itch version which has also been working fine for me (though someone has had an unrelated issue there with one of the achievement variables - possibly to do with using old saves - so that’s not necessarily a 100% reliable solution).

I just have put up an update which fixes a very obscure bug that was coming up under some circumstances when genders were randomised, but that isn’t related to either of the above issues.

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Ok thank you

No worries! Let me know what happens - like I say it’s a bit of a weird one and I’m not totally sure what needs to be done to fix it definitively.

I found a little writing mistake:
When you are in the train with Catharina, Fiore, Raffi and Simone:

From From the slow, drawling accent of his deep voice, you’d place him from one of the outer islands.

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Thank you! That’ll be fixed in the next update. (Multireplace typos are my nemesis!)

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It’s a nice comment from Elli, though FWIW I think HB has a lot more of those involved conversations than Villain Juice at present :sweat_smile:

I also saw some of the Denario dialogue about that yesterday. It went a long way towards warming me up to them. tbf I hadn’t interacted with them much before anyway, but yeah, the ‘it makes sense you’re a girl’ was kinda heartwarming.

I did encounter a bug on the Itch version. I’m not sure if it’s because I skipped straight to Chapter 3 and missed something about Korzha’s name? When considering whether to offer supplies, one of the options is missing a word.

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Well, Honor Bound has been in development for far longer than Drink Your Villain Juice. And my WIP has been rather one-sided.

Not to mention you joined the forum later. I joined earlier in the year, but bad engagement with readers has left things high and dry, hence the appearance of a ‘lacking updates’ kind of situation.

Oh, I wasn’t making a meta/discussion comparison!

What I meant was that I think HB has included far more of those good inclusive conversations/scene in its actual text, and while I’m heartened a post about Villain Juice could motivate Hannah to expand those kinds of scenes I don’t want to claim more credit for it than is due. Those camping scenes are great and probably one of my favourite parts of Honour Bound so far.

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Thank you! Yes, this is because of the chapter skip and will be fixed in the next update.

I really appreciate your thoughts :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: the bit where a trans PC in Villain Juice can reference their own “queer radar” made me smile and specifically made me want to put a little more recognition in there for trans PCs.

I’m not 100% sold on the half-line-or-so I added in when meeting Matia, when the narrative basically specifies that the culture isn’t transphobic - I’ve generally preferred to show that rather than tell it - but I’ll see how I feel down the line. It’s possible to end up overthinking this sort of thing a lot and I don’t want to overwork it to much :sweat_smile:

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Fortnightly progress report:

The first week of this fortnight, I didn’t write much at all: it was a school holiday, and me and the rest of my household were sick (not anything serious, but it knocked us out). But this week I returned to writing afresh to write Honor Bound Chapter 9 and have ended up writing more in one week than I often would in two - or even in a month!

It’s wild how branchy Chapter 9 is - most of the first half is one-on-one or two-on-one scenes that in some places branch seven ways. But the chapter has been proving to be a ton of fun! The first half is unashamedly a hotsprings episode - the reason why I nicknamed this “Project Hotsprings” when I was first talking about it - and so far it’s 22000 words devoted to chilling out, starting slow-burn romances, discussing how serious each others’ romances are, cementing friendships, having some emotional chats, having some jealousy discussions, and soaking up the sun. Plus some nice descriptions of characters in their holidaywear, some of which are more conventionally attractive than others (Fiore, Raffi) and others are basically what they wear normally (Savarel).

After two frantic chapters full of drama it’s a nice change of pace, a calm before the storm that’ll be ramping up again next chapter!

Honor Bound current wordcount: 365313 words
Honor Bound fortnight wordcount: 26717 words
Honor Bound average playthrough: 78903 words

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Chapter 5 is up!

I’m pleased to share Honor Bound Chapter 5 today, on dashingdon and itchio! There are some minor changes and fixes here and there earlier, but you can skip to the start of Chapter 5 if you’d like.

If you have the time and energy, I always love to hear what you think, whether here or on the anonymous form - I read everything that comes through and often make edits to the demo and to later chapters based on player feedback as it’s incredibly helpful to hear how people are finding the choices and characters.

The demo is now around 227,000 words - just over 50,000 words added! Things you may encounter in this chapter:

  • drama among students, town, and families
  • locking gazes over a desk
  • holding someone’s hand very intensely
  • kisses, if you want them
  • a road trip
  • some really nice food
  • a breakup, if you play your cards right (or wrong)
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