Noblesse Oblige Developer Diary - out soon!

Force feels right. Force of personality and brute force can both spring to mind, which means I wouldn’t ever feel like I was picking something that didn’t make sense when testing the Force stat.

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I think that force or spirit best capture what you want that stat to actually mean.

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Spirit worked in CdlC, and if the overlap actually helps people who’ve played the first game understand, why not?

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I like Force/Forceful, because to me it carries connotations of both a forceful personality and of direct applications of physical force. The other sort of fall flat for me on the latter aspect, because I don’t necessarily associate physical strength with those traits.

Here’s how I look at it: If you give me the following list of stats, with no more information given about them than the name, and a check to “break through a door” or “lift a heavy object”, which stat would I assume it was checking?

  1. Insight
  2. (Drive/Energy/Spirit/Force)
  3. Finesse
  4. Resilience

Of the four options, Force is the only one that stands out to me as something I’d immediately associate with that kind of check.

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Quick question: Early on in chapter one, if I read the options correctly, it looks like you can tag yourself as ace/aro? I say “looks like” because there have been some stories I’ve read in the past where the wording on romantic and sexual preferences was somewhat unclear, so I may have misinterpreted.

It doesn’t particularly bother me, I tend to go no-romance in a lot of stories I read anyhow, but for curiosity’s sake, does this permanently disqualify readers from any romantic and/or sexual engagements, period, or is it just a character preference tag that players are free to live up to or discard as they so choose?

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The way it works at the moment is -

If you select “I’m not interested in kissing or sex at all”, it sets “asexual” to true, it gates off kissing or sexual interactions. You can have an asexual romance with any of the three main characters, you just have a little chat about it when you start the romance.

If you pick a less binary option such as “I’d only want to do that with someone I was very close to”, when starting the romance you can choose options along the lines of “I want to take anything physical at my own pace”/“I don’t know if I’ll want to kiss you, but I might later” which sets a “low physical intensity” variable which slows down physical intimacy progression. With that variable set, you can still sleep with a character later on - the lead up is just slightly different - or you can keep things less physical. In real life terms, someone who picks one of those options may prefer to take things slowly, or may be on the ace spectrum.

It works the same way for the aromantic option. In Chapter 1 there’s a very definite response that’s “Romance isn’t for me” which sets “aromantic” to true and gates off more romantically-emotional interactions - you’re telling the game that you’re not at all into romance. Again you can have an aromantic relationship with any of the characters, you just have a chat about it when getting closer.

If you pick one of the options other than “romance isn’t for me”, when getting closer with a character you can pick something like “I want to be closer with you, but it’s not about romance” which results in a “low emotional intensity” variable where characters are less romantic towards you. If you don’t have the “aromantic” variable set, you can have your character develop more romantic feelings later on or keep it the way it is. In real life terms, this might be someone who is on the aro spectrum or they might not identify that way and prefer something less emotional.

With all of that said, you can also simply say “I want to be friends” and build a close platonic relationship with any of the three major characters. In real life terms, this might be a deep friendship, a nonsexual/nonromantic/queerplatonic partnership, a close alliance, and so on.

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I have some nice surprise news. It even surprised me! I’ve completed the first full draft of the game and sent off my marketing descriptions and art ideas!

I am THRILLED. It’s been a breath of fresh air working on something less gargantuan than my other games - as an interactive novella rather than a novel, it’s around 100,000 words and my goal is for it to be a short and intense, and satisfying standalone game. The proportion of strong momentum to tricky middle was so much higher, and overall it’s been a delight to draft. It’s been interesting and fun to really focus in on an intense story and explore different themes and types of plot in the Creme de la Creme universe. (Plus there’s a LOT more physical peril than in Creme or Royal Affairs so far and even some achievements about getting through the game unscathed or being really accident prone…)

The next step will be edits and revisions. There’s a lot of complexity in the latter half especially so continuity is quite a thing. Hopefully it won’t be too long before beta!

edit: which reminds me, please enjoy the public demo while it’s up, as it will be taken down when the official beta begins!

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Amazing and congratulations. You’re a machine. It’s incredible how fast you are at publishing your games.

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Aww that’s so kind, thank you! It’s been a long time since Creme came out but my hope is to have two games out in (relatively) quick succession, and I think they’ll be worth the wait!

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i just saw on your tumblr that the demo will be taken down when the beta begins. i have no idea how to sign myself up as a beta-tester, is this option still open? i have a lot of time, i’m willing to read it multiple times, i know how to pay attention, and i can read and understand the script :slight_smile:

Beta testing will be announced on the forum with instructions, and I’ll post about it on here too :sparkles: you won’t miss it, don’t worry!

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Congratulations! :partying_face: I got hooked on this story right away! I’m really glad you have made such amazing progress with it :slightly_smiling_face:

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Congrats on entering beta testing!

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Thank you so much!

I’m over the moon that beta testing has started for this project (and tickled too that Fay and I have games in beta at the same time!). I’m thrilled to hear what testers think of the completed draft!

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I’m one of the testers for your game, looking forward to doing my first playthrough tonight. Before I get started, I was wondering if there’s anything specific you want testers to be looking at, at this point? Anything in particular you’d like us to experiment with or focus on?

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Ahhh that’s very exciting, thank you so much! I think in general how the characters feel to you and are they interesting/appealing, and are there points where your interest flags or you’re frustrated as a player (as it’s a short game I want to make sure scenes are doing as much as they can). I’m also really interested in how the main character feels to play!

But as far as paths or experimentation, please go ahead and do what feels right for your character and if there are points where the game doesn’t let you do something that your character would want to, that’s helpful information. Thank you so much in advance, I hope you enjoy!

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Just wanted to say now that we’re in the middle of beta, that I’m absolutely thrilled with all the feedback I’ve been getting. I’m feeling the improvements as I do my own playtests and without you it wouldn’t be nearly so good! The time people have taken to play and comment is amazing. I’ve even made myself a document of pure positivity - it’s 4 pages long already and it means such a lot. A small minority of suggestions aren’t within scope of the game, but I’ve been implementing almost everything else. The game’s now over 16000 words longer!

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It’s been an absolute pleasure to work on! It’s beautifully written, and such a good story. The player character is one of my favorites in any game, ever. (My first playthrough in every beta I do is a self-insert, and this one ended up feeling so much like my actual self it was a little uncanny!) I love that, even in a game that is short and fairly linear, I’m still discovering new secrets. I love how the story ends up looking and feeling totally different based on the relationships I’ve cultivated or neglected, even when it centers on the same basic sequence of events. And I’ve had the privilege of seeing how it’s grown even better since the first time I played it. It would have been good enough just the way it was, but the extra effort you’ve continued to pour into it has made it something truly special.

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Ah that truly means so much! I so so appreciate that as well as all your commentary and incredible eye for detail. It’s been such an interesting experience making a game with a different structure to the ones I’ve done before, and I’m really pleased about the polish that’s going into it! I think it’s been easier to polish as well, because of there being literally less of it - I can make smaller changes with more precision and the bigger structural shifts are more straightforward.

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Any word on a release date?