Noblesse Oblige - BETA CLOSED

Spark a whirlwind romance in a crumbling mansion! You have traveled far from home to work as a conversation partner for a lonely aristocrat on a desolate foreign island. Will you throw caution to the winds as you grow closer with your companions?

Sneak through the estate to uncover the dark secrets of your loved ones, catch clandestine moments and midnight trysts, and fan the flames of romance! Your job on this remote island has just begun: work hard for a secure future or blow up your life for love. Who will you betray and who will win your devotion?

Noblesse Oblige by @HannahPS is a standalone game in the Crème de la Crème universe, set after Crème de la Crème with a different protagonist. It’s also an experiment with a shorter game format. We’re excited to see what you think!

Directions for beta-testing:

Email us, beta AT choiceofgames for access.

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 how we describe it above.

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). Please indicate if your family/surname comes first as well.
  • Beta testers’ names are listed in the game’s credits, which are accessed with the “About” link you’ll see within the game. If you don’t want to appear in the credits, or you want to be credited under a name other than your real one, please let us know.

Do not email us multiple times about joining a beta. If you don’t email us as soon as we post a beta, you go into a queue. As we post new drafts, we admit more people from the queue. Eventually, we will get to you. Some beta processes last longer than others, and it may take up to a few weeks to reach the front of 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.

When you have feedback to submit:

  • Return feedback as part of the same email thread where you were admitted. Copying beta@choiceofgames on that email is the best way to make sure your comments are seen as soon as possible.
  • Please send screenshots or copy/pasted quotes whenever 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.

A few more notes:

  • You cannot be testing two games at once. Send feedback on one and you can apply to another. If you apply for multiple games at the same time, you will likely be admitted first to whichever game has testing slots open up first, and we won’t be able to admit you to the other one until you send in your comments for that one. (From an admin standpoint, it’s easiest if you don’t apply to more than one game at once – applying to multiple games makes it more likely that we’ll miss admitting you to one of them.)
  • If you’re admitted as a tester but realize you won’t be able to send in feedback for that game, please let us know! You won’t be penalized in any way - we’ll just take you off the list of testers for that game. But if you sign up to test a game and don’t send comments or withdraw, it will affect your chances of being admitted to future betas.
  • There’s no standard length of time for a beta testing period to last, and we usually don’t know exactly how long a game will be in beta when it opens. The best way to know how long a beta will be open is to follow the thread for updates.
  • It’s fine to send multiple feedback emails, but if you have a lot of quick comments, it’s easier to keep track of them if you bundle them into one email.

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.

23 Likes

New draft, v27247! Changelog:

Changes:
-Chapter 1: added some stat changes, MC appearance and clothing tweaks
-Chapter 2: stat change adjustments, option added to ask Pascha what they’re doing, options added to argue with Rys
-Chapter 2 onwards: added option to express that returning to education is the most important thing for you, and references to this later
-Chapter 3: added Danelak, Pascha, and Rys interactions late in the chapter
-Chapter 4: added more interactions for Pascha and Danelak

-Stats page: added setting guide
-Romantic scene: small wording tweak

Fixes:
-Chapter 1: one of the MC names now sets correctly, alcohol no longer offered if a character has said they never drink, typos and minor changes
-Chapter 2: typos
-Chapter 3: typos
-Chapter 4: typos, minor adjustments/clarifications
-Chapter 5: restored inadvertently skipped Rys and Pascha interactions, typos, exposed code
-Chapter 6: typos, minor adjustments/clarifications
-Chapter 7: typos, minor adjustments/clarifications

-Pascha romantic scene: text section no longer loops

2 Likes

New draft, v25275! Changelog:

Changes:
-Throughout: tweaks/clarifications/minor additions/stat changes, trimmed a few Britishisms
-Stat page: tweaks; made relationship bars unlock when characters are met
-Chapter 1: sprinkled more setting details especially about religion

-Chapter 2: added section about where the MC grew up; sprinkled more setting details especially about hometowns; added extensive getting to know you content for Danelak, Pascha and Rys; dropped more early hints about what’s going on with Rys
-Chapter 3: added option asking where your companion would like to go; added option to ask Rys about Pascha and Pascha about Danelak and vice versa; added more setting context to Pascha conversation; clarified aromantic gating when starting a relationship; dropped some more hints about what’s going on with Rys
-Chapter 5: added reference to parents receiving money if it was sent; added ability to betray everyone and an achievement to reflect it; added nuance to betrayal options; added another non-betrayal route
-Chapter 6: expanded character interactions and screentime on betrayal routes; continued non-betrayal throughline
-Chapter 7: added positive Pascha time if you’re still friendly; expanded descriptions of what characters are up to and the MC responses; expanded Iravan section; continued non-betrayal throughline
-Romance scenes: added option for MC saying it’s their first time to all intimacy scenes, not just Danelak’s

Fixes:
Various: typos, verb agreements
-Chapter 1: corrected switched stat changes in an early choice
-Chapter 4: corrected repeated text in town scenes
-Chapter 5: Danelak no longer acts as if you know what’s going on with them if you haven’t spoken about it before
-Chapter 6: Conversation no longer continues as if Pascha is still present after leaving; fixed skipped text; game no longer incorrectly behaves as if the MC has already found out what’s going on with Pascha and Rys
-Chapter 7: Danelak no longer gatecrashes a Pascha ending; game should no longer behave as if Pascha is gone when they’re not; no longer have option to “regain Pascha’s trust” if player did nothing to break it; fixed skipped letter section
-Corrected Poker Face achievement

2 Likes

New draft, v27283! Changelog:

Changes:

Throughout: minor tweaks and clarifications; more responsiveness to character relationship scores

Chapter 2: minor tweaks; added a choice in Pascha’s lesson for stat boosts and progress description; added a stat boost choice set; added lie options after helping Rys or Danelak
Chapter 3/4: tweaked order of reveals about what’s going on with Danelak and added more player responses; extended all romance start scenes; added no-romance, no-friendship option for lone wolves
Chapter 4: Expanded descriptions about Pascha’s classes progress; added setting info about polyamory and how MC would feel about it; added optional flirting for more of a lead-up to polyamorous romance
Chapter 5: Expanded MC acclimatisation to the language; added responsiveness if MC sent money to parents but no letter
Chapter 6: Expanded a multi-person kiss to make it clear that it’s with more than one person
Chapter 7: made Danelak’s response about “making this official” less lukewarm; clarified that long-distance polyamorous characters are still in a relationship

Fixes:

Throughout: typos

Chapter 2: exposed code; tweak to reflect chapter now taking place over more time
Chapter 4: meeting up with Rys text no longer in a weird place; tweaked Danelak flirting if you’re already romancing someone else
Chapter 7: exposed code; corrected MC’s unnecessary concern about someone being on their tail; fixed some skipped mail; corrected Runaway/Homebody achievement triggers

2 Likes

New draft, v27442! Changelog:

Fixes:

Throughout: typos, pronoun typos, verb agreements, incorrect gaps in text etc
Chapter 3/4 and stat page: turning down an initial romantic advance no longer makes the game look like there’s been a breakup
Chapter 7: fixed text skipping when talking to Iravan and discussing your day on Rys route; fixed text skipping when talking to Iravan; corrected a Pascha continuity error when discussing Chapter 6 events

Changes:

Stat page: added short descriptions of other major characters; changed name for Mystical to Devout; added descriptors for major relationship scores
Throughout: minor tweaks; reduced magnitude of Demeanor changes to calm down large score fluctuations; clarified wording of testing choices; expanded parent letter storyline

Chapter 1 and throughout: added shaved-head option for MC; tweaked hair-related wording to account for this option

Chapter 1: tweaked Finesse tag skill backstory for more clarity about how stat is used

Chapter 2: tweaks; a few additional options in choices; added small detail from Rys about why they’re asking the MC for a favour

Chapter 3: tidied up a reference to Danelak’s height in relation to MC; added reference to the Countess sleeping in her study

Chapter 4: removed animal-cruelty content gate from some non-cruel options so they’re available for everyone; randomised gender of Danelak’s past dalliance; tweaked Rys hug to better reflect if you’re not close; expanded Pascha one-on-one scene for more reveal hints and responses; expanded Danelak one-on-one scene for more responses and details; more setting details

Chapter 5: tweaks; added narrative weight to the decision to reject character requests and a get-out option for changing your mind; added option to encourage or discourage an independent romance for Danelak and Pascha if you’re not romancing; added relationship stat changes for starting or rejecting character routes

Chapter 5-6: added option to betray Pascha in favour of Rys

Chapter 6: gave big Pascha reveal more breathing space and clarification; added a couple of reveal responses specific to having switched routes

Chapter 7: lots of expansion (6000+ words extra!) throughout all routes - added and extended lots of scenes, shed more light on mysterious elements, included more about future plans, family, feelings, and breathing room after the previous chapter

2 Likes

New draft, v27459! Changelog:

Fixes:
Stat page: relationship bars no longer disappear at certain values
Throughout: typos, minor clarifications
Chapter 2: fixed skipped text

Changes:
Stat page: tweaked relationship descriptors for more responsiveness to plot events

1 Like

New draft, v27576! Changelog:

Changes:
Chapter 2: smoothed scene flow
Chapter 3/4: tweaked and expanded aromantic relationship discussion options
Chapter 4: referenced wanting or not wanting the party in previous chapter if you’ve changed your mind
Chapter 5: tweaked summary description of Rys relationship to better suit a grey-aro route; adjusted abandonment/betrayal wording for flow/clarity/drama; tweaked big Pascha reveal for flow
Chapter 5/6: added option to sabotage preparations on Pascha-aligned routes
Chapter 6: minor tweak of a keepsake in your room
Chapter 5/7: added fade to black option when starting intimate scenes (in addition to the stat page toggle)

Fixes:
Throughout: typos, verb agreements, pronouns
Chapter 4: no alcohol offered to teetotal MCs
Chapter 5: fixed repetitive text

1 Like

New draft, v27578! Changelog:

Fixes:
Stat page: Fixed low relationship making stat bar vanish issue (hopefully for real this time)
Throughout: typos, verb agreements, missing words or misplaced spaces

Changes:
Throughout: minor tweaks/clarifications
Chapter 2: expanded description about how the Countess habitually treats Danelak
Chapter 3/4: smoothed Pascha reveal exposition
Chapter 4: clarified budget decision with Danelak
Chapter 5: added description of some befriended characters reacting to an MC romancing someone; clarification where MC tells Pascha about Rys; clarified/streamlined some Iravan interactions
Chapter 7: accounted for some betrayal actions in earlier chapters when describing state of the manor

1 Like

New draft, v27587! Changelog:

Changes:
Various: minor clarifications and wording tweaks
Throughout: stat balance adjustments
Chapter 3: added an another opportunity to boost a low stat
Chapter 3/4: adjusted some wording around aromantic relationship-start options
Chapter 4: added more responsiveness to relationship scores in character descriptions

Fixes:
Various: typos, verb agreements
Chapter 3/4: fixed aromantic Pascha relationship variable
Chapter 5/7: fixed rare bug when fading to black in a Pascha intimate scene

We’re getting close to the end of this beta, so please send in any remaining comments!

2 Likes

New draft, v27592! Changelog:

Changes:
Chapter 1: added option during Countess chat; added option during the night section
Chapter 2: expanded/clarified description of being at boarding school and when it was in the MC’s life

Fixes:
Chapter 1: small edit for continuity if you’re quiet before intercepting Pascha and Danelak
Chapter 5: typo

1 Like

New draft, v27617! Changelog:

Changes:
Chapter 2: tweaked investigation choices to reflect if you’re changing your mind after your initial decision; tweaked description when choosing what (if anything) to investigate to avoid assuming player’s plans
Chapter 4: made Danelak response to being asked to ride together more enthusiastic

Fixes:
Chapter 3: character clarification
Chapter 5: removed repeated text

This is the last call for feedback - the game will be leaving beta within the next couple days.

2 Likes

New draft, v27915! Changelog:

Changes:
Various: minor clarifications and small wording changes
Chapter 5: expanded Rys and Danelak paths with explanations if the MC is friends with them but hasn’t had a chance to talk about what’s going on

Fixes:
Various: typos
Chapter 2: fixed incorrect Cautious stat change
Chapter 5: fixed skipped text in staff panic reaction
Chapter 6: fixed skipped text in Danelak conversation

1 Like

The game is going to copyedit, so this beta is now closed. Thanks to everyone who sent in feedback!

2 Likes