神龍之土 Land of the Dragon [WIP] (09/07/20 Update! The Uprising Appears!)

Writing music? :grin::grin:

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Can’t really help with poetry…:persevere: never been my bigger interest, and most poetry I know is about war and loss…

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@PhilosoTor ohmygod, yes. I remember I had a classmate who was super into this drama when it aired, and the ending crushed us all. Although I suppose w the plot it was inevitable… Apparently there was a modern day reincarnation sequel that had terrible reviews? Oh well, there’s always the Korean adaptation… The song is beautiful too, thanks for the rec!

@Vanessa_Pang ayy, thanks for the rec! I’ll use that 1h of music productively, I promise couhghs as I open another unrelated tab

@Willow_Felya_G haha, it’s okay! This is getting p off topic anyways oops… Although if you want to share your poems there’s always a cultural appreciation(?) space here!

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hahaha, that show, my mom and sis loved it.
though… the chinese seem to really love making these kinds of series

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Just curious: how do u guys see the code of games? I learn better from examples, so that would be helpful for my own coding for this game. For instance the sample Choice of the Dragon files on the choicescript tutorial page really helped me to pick up the basics. That is, if that’s allowed(?)

Onto game related info: as we near the end of Chapter 1, future updates may be extended to 1 every 10 days instead. The next one should be up in the next few days, although bc it has the most branches so far I expect 1929929 bugs… I’ll be relying on your observant eyes to correct them hehe!

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You could use this:

Or do you mean the code you have brought?

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You just copy the link and add /scenes afterwards and see a list of the scenes
https://dashingdon.com/play/ohmyvalar/land-of-the-dragon/mygame/scenes/

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@resuri08 @Frogs oh no this must mean all my funny names for labels are public :joy: sorry I’m such a noob at this… And thanks for the help guys! Hopefully this will make coding go smoother and faster lol

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Actually, with your game it would be: scenes/startup.txt

https://dashingdon.com/play/ohmyvalar/land-of-the-dragon/mygame/scenes/startup.txt

Like that you can see the code of the whole game… Fore some reason every game is slightly different… Maybe it depends on which folder it’s saved? :thinking:

Did you write your whole game in the startup.txt file?
I’m pretty new with this whole thing, so who knows :sweat_smile:

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I think that link opens startup.txt directly, but the /scenes thing takes u to a menu of all the files, which so far for this game are: startup.txt, stats file and chapter1.txt! Although I’ve checked out a few other games and there’s a parent directory thing that when clicked on takes u to the game itself? But mine doesn’t seem to have it lol. Much confuze…

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I think it’s a new Dashingdon design maybe? I checked the Dashingdon website and apparently every new game has this new scene list.
In older games the scene list looked different and it showed when each scene was last edited and how much the files weigh.
Like this one for example:
https://dashingdon.com/play/karlan/spell-academy/mygame/scenes/

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Ooh, thanks for the info! If it’s purely aesthetic and as long as the game coding still works then alls good haha.

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Re: the previously undecided marriage conundrum in-game (this is pasted directly from my notes lol so it’s gonna be a bit messy)

Marriage: because powerful magic (the coveted, controversial spell for conception between same sex couples recently invented by a foreign Ancient Rome counterpart woman Aurelia Cornificia and her lover) is still the sole privilege of the wealthy and powerful, and due to old attitudes against same sex marriage (although not against “appropriately conducted” same sex relationships), recently there have been some same sex marriages among the aristocrats who are against integration of even influential foreigners for political benefit among their ranks and have taken to breaking “taboo” by using the foreign spell to keep the bloodline pure as a lesser “evil”. This is not really helping the reputation of same sex marriages in the Land, which the Emperor has no plans to sway one way or another bc he sees private allowance as a way to maintain both sides’ approval of his rule. Hence same sex marriage outside of the aristocracy was unheard of, but the Uprising is supporting it amongst its base, some of which support it merely to spite the traditionalist aristocrats, others bc of their own experiences.

*I found the family name Cornificia by chance on a list of patrician surnames, and upon wikiing it learnt that she was a reputed poet whose works were read at least 400 years after her death, but have now been sadly lost. So here’s a little info snippet and homage :slight_smile:

Tldr: current official attitudes towards same sex marriage are more in line w historical attitudes, but the Uprising and magical-advancements brought about ethnical diversity among aristocracy has swept a wave of change throughout the Land. At the end of the game MC, with certain conditions fulfilled, can choose to implement marriage equality officially in the Land.

Any thoughts? Any plotholes u can poke your fingers through (!?)

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How will the nobles react to marriage/romance with someone who is a commoner or a guardian. Say you were to marry Chen Kun for example, would it be accepted or not?

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I would assume that a marriage between a noble and a commoner would be completely unacceptable to the other nobles seeing how some characters reacted when Chen Kun touched you after basically saving your life. And it was pretty much the norm in real life as well.

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Haven’t been here for a while! Read through the new comments and updates, and generated a boatload of questions. Sorry. Not really. If the answer’s too spoilery just ignore me.

First of all, I love Fang Yun as a character. About her backstory: was the intelligence competition her idea, or the Emperor’s? Aka, does she genuinely view intelligence as the most important trait in her choice of partner, or was that a excuse to get out of arranged marriage?

Side-question: what is her definition of intelligence? The ‘intelligence’ stat in game seems (so far) chiefly about scholarship / lore / history (knowledge) and does not encompass problem solving, plotting and spotting plots, etc.

It would be lovely if we could cultivate an alliance/friendship with her by working with her on matters of state, even without romance. And also get a feel for her political views, style of governing, and sphere of influence, since she seems to be a highly opinionated and competent government official.

How did the heir to the throne get the court to agree to send him to the border? It carries a substantial risk of him dying, which, among other things, destabilizes the kingdom. Since apparently 18 is the age of becoming an adult in this setting, he would still be considered a child. Does it have anything to do with the not-biological-siblings spoiler you put out earlier?

Also interested in his military career. What rank/role did he start as? It’s a bit difficult to imagine an untested 14 year old becoming a general straight away, royal blood or not. Long Qing is described as ‘well respected’. Is it a “strategic prodigy, wins all his battles” sort of respect, or a “treats his soldiers well” sort of respect?

What was the conflict in the borderlands about? A war with our neighboring country? Seasonal raids by them? Defending against a future invasion, or planning to invade them ourselves? You mentioned earlier that there are forces seeking greater power for foreigners. Is this particular group of foreigners present in our land? Are they reviled or treated as all other groups?

The trials: did I just go through an magicky adult version of 抓周? :snake:

In our future competitions with Long Qing, will we be only building up our own support, or will we also have chances to undermine his? Will he in turn attempt to sabotage us, either premptively or in retaliation?

About worldbuilding: have you considered an optional lore dump? Skimming through the library / walking past some classrooms and having the choice to read/listen in on our chosen topic(s) or walk away, with no change in stats either way. It could also serve as a chance to define what our character is and isn’t interested in.

I’m just really curious about the fantastic world and characters you’re building, and would like to flesh them out in my own mind, make them more real to me. If you’re modeling them on any real-world events/people/situations, sending me a link would be nice. Thanks for creating this. Here, have some cake.:cake:

Also, a minor thing, but it is a bit … amusing? to read that our gender is ‘princess’. Imagine if ‘princess’ was a actual gender all in its own. The horror.
Maybe call it our title? It would still convey the same information.

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In the point of view of my MC, marriage equality will probably be one of the top things on his agenda. I do plan on marrying Chen Ku. I do hope that it is still possible to get Fang Yun as an ally without marrying her. Hopefully the position of Prime Minister will be be enticing to her :smile:.

The Uprising seems quite interesting. If they also support marriage equality then at least we have something in common. Then again, I also agree with them that the Empire needs a more meritocratic system of governance. I am sure the nobles will be against this at first but I think my MC can convince them otherwise. Because, at the end of the day a meritocratic governance system is good but not good enough that it will wipe the privileges of the aristocrats.

For example, imagine the state seeking the most qualified individual who will take an important imperial administration post, while this post is formally open to everyone, we know full well that it actually is not for everyone. Who can afford to attend higher institutions of learning in order to get a job at the imperial government? Definitely not the peasants but the aristocrats have the money (and possible a few rich merchants).

So I guess my MC will also seek support from the Uprising. While it is noble of them to seek a meritocratic system of governance, unless they stipulate the state should make higher institutions of learning affordable for even the poorest of the poor, the aristocrats will still remain powerful and thus one’s upbringing will still be a determining factor on how successful they are.

Once I am done with the Uprising and have the support of the peasants, the heads of the leaders of the Uprising will naturally roll. After all, after a revolution a purge is needed to solidify the grasp on power of the new leader (me).

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Short simple replies for now bc my friends r late :upside_down_face: ill get through the rest later!

@Frogs @MichaelCrank marriage of a noble to a commoner is not unheard of but rare - in fact much like back in ancient china it would’ve been the stuff of romantic legends - be it the romance of a noble girl falling in love w a humble peasant boy or a more cinderella story of a girl becoming the concubine of a noble. I think there were even instances of peasant girls being brought back by the Emperor into the harem during supervisory travels throughout the realm (to be fair ancient records of concubines usually only give their surname, if that at all)? But as for actual monogamous marriage with the commoner half being the legitimate/true spouse, it would be a huge scandal for a royal in-game, although perhaps it has happened sporadically with particularly brilliant or lucky commoners with the help of a cooperative royal family. As you may guess, neither the Emperor nor the Empress is going to approve of such a marriage sadly even w Chen Kun’s merit and connections, bc he serves a much more “appropriate” and equally exploitable role as your personal guard. Furthermore there’s the whole business of the master-guard bond between you which will be explored later which throws a whole new problem into the mix… Butttt as promised there will be (too many) many endings and one of them is bound to be marriage w Chen Kun, although the actual circumstances I cannot say for certain yet :smirk: it’s certainly to be a smaller outrage than other things u can choose to do at the end of the game, so…

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@sljzz haha its okay, I love sharing tidbits of the world the haven’t made it into the game yet/I myself haven’t thought through and can address henceforth so constructive questions are always welcome!

Yes, the intelligence competition was Fang Yun’s idea to deter suitors (and it was through this that she drew the Emperor’s attention) with the additional benefit of exhibiting the intellect she’s so proud of. However, she does not actually expect superior intellect of a MC who wishes to marry her - that depends on other factors, mostly r/s in general which can be earned from high intelligence stat but that’s only 1 out of a few options. Although that being said at the beginning of the game Fang Yun does not have any plans to get married; throughout the game MC can persuade her otherwise, although certain choices late in the game may permanently lock her from a marriage to MC (this applies to all other major characters as well).

For some stats (especially combat, persuasion and magic) I am considering sub-categories, some of which r alr evident in the Trial choices. However because I’m finding it difficult to create an equal number of sub categories for stats like religion and intelligence I may scrap the idea. This is probably why all definitions of intelligence seem vague for now - although Fang Yun herself definitely prefers both in a package bc both apply to her, lol.

Yes, of course you will be able to make her your ally - or vice versa lol its debatable - without romancing her! That is one of the key tenets (?) of her personality that I had in mind when I crafted her character. On the scale w other major characters she’d be the most “ice-queen”, and I hate the idea that she’d only work with u if she’s been “melted by love”. There is even be the option to romance her while maintaining a barb tongued kinda rivalry with her. In the next update, if you choose to carriage-ride w Fang Yun, there will be some insight into her political views and strategies, so I won’t spoil that now. Throughout the next chapters you can either choose to work with or against her politically.

As will be explored further next update with the right choices, the court is currently in a rather triangular power balance. Not everyone supports the Crown Prince’s faction, and when he publicly begged permission to go to the borderlands w the army before the court to the Emperor, he was forced into agreeing both for his usually impartial reputation and bc of politicking by the other two factions. And there’s always the excuse of the trueborn MC still being around… Still this was viewed as a shocking event shrouded in mystery (that you can unveil throughout the game) bc the Crown Prince was set for a safe(r) and smoother career in court paved by his faction as already hinted in-game. Btw, the actual age of adulthood ceremony is 14 in-game as hinted in the prologue w Chen Kun (as young boys and girls were presented as ripe for marriage back in ancient china at 15? 及笄/束髮) but bc of dramatic plot purposes the age royals are presented to the realm is 18 (and they get to express themselves instead of being instructed by elders w greater free will at this age) for their coronation ceremony.

I actuallt think 14 was a p common age for boys to join the army back in the ancient world(? Although fair warning, my knowledge of the military at any period is shaky at best) although of course even w his status making him general immediately would’ve been both social and literal suicide. Long Qing is no prodigy as for example Fang Yun is, but he is has a p successful military career so far bc he does treat soldiers well (a fact exacerbated by his high birth to commoner soldiers) + bc of his status the best soldiers and advisors gather in his camp and help him secure victories. In my mind he probablt started as a squiring kinda role to a trusted military officer in his political faction and gradually was given opportunities to work his way up swiftly through the ranks, although I probablt won’t explore this much other than in brief flashbacks bc im rly not th best person to write military fiction.

The conflict in the borderlands is a nod to the ongoing skirmishes throughout dynasties by the Mongolians on Ancient China in history, the xiongnu and nuzhenzu etc, w all the historical connotations thereof. While being a reminder to the court to keep the army strong enough to deter an actual invasion, it also serves as an excuse for the bulk of the army to be kept safely away at the borderlands against rebellion. Its a delicate balancing act, and it technically could play a role late in the game, but currently it’s just a historical reference and I’ve no solid plans for that. The foreigners mentioned refer to the fictional counterparts of other great ancient civilizations that in this timeline exist in overlapping time periods bc ~magic~ and ~fantasy~ lol (it’s bc I love ancient history too much), namely the ones hinted in the ethnicity choosing. As mentioned above bc of recent rapid advancements in magic tech, portal magic has become a common privilege of aristocrats, some of whom have married/married into these foreign civilizations to maintain political balance (I think there’s a more detailed ver somewhere above in the thread) As for treatment, the realm is split on it. Cross marriage has become prevalent enough among aristocrats that even the traditionalist Emperor has taken foreign nobles for concubines (the chief of which can either be the Empress or Imperial Consort Nefertari/Yi acc to MC’s ethnicity), but some remain vehemently anti-miscegenistic. This is another plot point that ties in w the Uprising’s cause as can be read in a post above.

Yes LmAo I didn’t think of it that way, but yes. Hey at least MC is old enough to consciously decide their choices with knowledge of the consequences!

You will mostly have choices to build up your own support base compared to Long Qing’s (bc solely smearing your opponent can’t take you all the way man) but for certain political factions you will have the chance to sabotage Long Qing. Whether he attempts the same is dependent on your choices, mostly your general r/s, but w some… Spoilery exceptions.

About world building… I personally dislike long chunks of expository text which can really put me off playing/reading completely bc I prefer to experience elements of the world rather than reading a history book in the middle of a fiction lol. But I’ll consider an optional lore dump like you suggested if others express interest - however it’ll probablt be added in after I’ve written the entire game to avoid retcons or spoilers.

Hehe, definitely some of the events and names etc r inspired by mythological/historical things, although I can’t rmb all of them now… Feel free to ask about any suspicions tho haha.

accepts cake :heart_eyes: I’m glad you like it so far!

Tbh I wouldn’t mind having princess as my gender lol, but I see your point. This originated bc I didn’t want a cluttered stat chart lol.

Thanks for the long review! :smile:

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Ahaha, yes Fang Yun would be greatly satisfied w the position of Prime Minister which is currently blocked to her by the power balance irregardless of her actual abilities.

Yes, supporting the Uprising will be one way to get a more meritocratic form of Govt and marriage equality by the end of the game. (I’m still thinking if a total democracy ending is logical even for this fantasy world) Be warned tho, the Uprising isnt going to be a paragon of rights and virtue either. As hinted before, there are multiple factions within the Uprising that have united For the purpose of rebellion, but have to be carefully balanced. Even Jin the official leader is not… All they seem.

Yes, I think that example is similar to the situation in the Roman Republic? Political positions such as consul were technically open to plebeians, but few had the means and power to actually even run for it.

:smirk: as for overall, if MC plays their cards right you may be able to achieve most of those in one playthrough, but perhaps not all. Politics is a tricky business after all…

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