That’s his name?
Yes, that’s the name of the butler of Merryweather Manor; he was the butler there when you were a small child as well. Now he is quite aged, and not quite as able to keep up with hijinks.
Aww, our childhood butler. I’m just gonna pretend his name is Alfred.
Does the butler of Merryweather even have a first name though? I feel like the MC would refer to him as the Merryweather butler or Weathertable for life ……
On the other hand, can the MC get phobias of tables ?
Status update! I am going to devote one more week to working on the exploration of the manor, and then move on, leaving a few bits not done, to build the village, for people who would like to spend their Chapter Five exploring the environs, meeting the townsfolk of Flutterbury and such.
In the process, you’ll have the opportunity to visit a brewhouse, the church, the coffeeshop, the police station, the shopping district, and the St. Clair estate, as well as a mysterious luxury apartment (or posh flat, if you like) and a rooftop retreat. Er, the latter only for people who are not chimney-phobic, of course!
Even though players will be able to move back and forth freely between the four big locations in this chapter (house, village, grounds, London), the location you start with will have a unique adventure–so starting in the village will give you an adventure with Robin and possibly Parsnip that you cannot get if you don’t start there.
I’m switching over to the village before being wholly done with the house just to keep my own interest up; a change of pace is good for me, and switching it up helps me keep things light and fun. The risk is always that when you are working on the same thing for weeks the slog starts to creep in, and I never want players to feel like they are reading the part of the game where you were fighting slog.
So this week, we finish Chum’s room, Fielding’s room (yes, the same Fielding who used to work at Aunt Primrose in Tally Ho), and one other servant’s room, and then I move on, leaving the kitchen, the study, and the wine cellar for another week in the future.
Will we know whose adventure corresponds to what location when making the choice, or only after?
You won’t know in advance, but the adventure you have is pretty much an extension of the place you go. For example, if you decide to go to London, the adventure is figuring out how to get someone to give you a ride there; if you go to the golf game, the adventure is the first hole–and so forth. It’s a lot like the way the opera/arena/press bit works in Cakes and Ale–you can travel around, but there’s always an initial part you miss if you don’t go there first.
I demand stairs made of smoke and chimney sweeps singing “chim chim eree”. Whaddya mean that’s decades too early and the wrong genre??
The house, the village, the grounds and London. The scope of these games always feels like a triumph in itself. Hope the writing treats you well!
Status updates are always fun because there’s always a new name dropped and I had scramble through my brain to figure out if the character has been named before. Who’s Robin? Who’s Melora? Weathertable? Can’t wait to find out.
Fielding being back is also cool! I hope he doesn’t have to suffer more punches this time.
How did we get to the St. Claire estate? Did we break into it ? Unceremoniously uninvited? Was Mr. St Claire furious? I hope he is furious.
Adding to this I demand Jolly Good chimney jingle!
Also, really unrelated but happy birthday Gower Thanks for all the work you’ve done and I hope you’ll have a wonderful day/night.
When’s your birthday Gower? Happy birthday
You… um missed it. It was um, 10 days ago…… when he still had a cake by his name….
Oh I didn’t know that was a thing
It’s cool don’t worry about it
Mid July Update!
I have just about finished the house and the village parts of Chapter Five, and anticipate writing the London and the Golf portions for the rest of July and August. My goal is to have Chapter Five completely done before classes start up again in September.
The writing is proceeding quite swiftly, but that’s not really a meaningful bit of data, because word count is one thing and progress along the outline is another, more important thing. I can’t even talk about the game length at this point. All I have to do is pray that my editor and CoG are understanding in a sort of benign, head-shaking, eyebrows lifted, “what ever shall we do with him?” sort of way. At this point, I’ve already carved a massive left half of the body, and I can’t shrink the other half of the sculpture without it looking weird.
One of the fun things about Chapter Five is that there will be a unique quest depending on who your sponsor is–nothing huge, but just one extra place you can go or one extra thing you are tasked with doing depending on your sponsor in a chapter already filled with stuff.
For people who ended up with the Bold Explorers Society as a sponsor–I figure you like Bold Exploration, and thus, some bold exploration. If you end up with the Spud Nuggets, I assume your deepest desire is to do things that involve potato crisps, and thus your dreams shall come true. The one thing I sort of cut is a different Spud Nugget adventure if you are president and chose the Spud Nuggets and a different one if you are not president and had them foisted upon you.
This is wholly aside from Chapter Six, which will be a unique chapter’s worth of stuff depending on your sponsor, in the vein of the Scandal chapter of Cakes and Ale.
Whereas the shape of Cakes and Ale was a little funny, with a big start, a bit of a lull around chapter four, massive chapters five and six (the scandal adventure and the box-dine/opera/press) and then a relatively quiet chapters seven and eight–Tea and Scones ended up having pretty much massive-every-chapters aside from Chapter Four. So the game, I hope, should be exciting to play…but slow to write.
Right now the shape is: (blurring if you don’t want to see spoilers for the shape of the game)
1: Hijinks at the club
2: A road trip with a lot of adventures
3: Arriving at Merryweather and some social intrigue
4: Breakfast and chit-chat
5: Exploring the house, village, London, golfing in a timed chapter with lots to do and 16 time units to do it in <-------- I AM HERE
6: Brief respite and a talk with your main RO or someone else
Chapter about you and your sponsor
7: A big adventure chosen from 1 of 5, the availability of which will depend on your relationship with the adventure giver. One or more of the not-done quests will be attempted by someone else.
8: The big wrap-up chapter with your choice of three big adventures
The climax: a jumble sale and a variety show
The romantic path will probably lock at this point.
In my fantasy, I finish 5 in the summer; 6 in the fall, and then 7-8 during my sabbatical, which goes January 2023 to August 2023. It could happen!
@Gower You are a professor, correct? Do you have to return to work once Summer ends?
I sure am…but, even though I have a pretty busy fall semester of teaching, I am 100% off classes in spring and summer 2023 because I received a sabbatical. Technically my sabbatical starts in late January. Aside from Tea and Scones, the only other thing I have on my plate for that time is a scholarly article that I’m working on, so I’ll be able to spend a lot of time on T&S then, and (crossing fingers) finishing it before I return to classes.
Naturally, that’s a super tentative timetable, but that’s the current notion I have.
But right now the only thing I’m focused on is Chapter Five in all of its weird complexity.
I hope many delicious flavors will be involved!
Very down for the sponsor chapter, can’t wait for Haze to once again talk me into a life of crime as he did in Tally Ho. It’s a good thing I’m not this impressionable in real life. I hope.