These Reluctant Years (WIP) - Last updated: August 11th, 2021

Thank you for the help.

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I think you need to be traditional, have a good relationship with your father, and be a foe of Lázaro. You may not need all of the above though.

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Thanks @Felix_Jones

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Felix_Jones is correct. You will also be accepted if you are not a “deviant” and meet three or more of the following criteria: you’re a traditionalist, you’re an isolationist, you have a greater reputation among Society than the Outcasts, you do not have a positive relationship with Lázaro, and/or you have a positive relationship with your father.

No problem! (:

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I do enjoy the inclusion of binary trans people but as a trans person I couldn’t finish it, all the transphobia made for a kind of stressful experience for me. Best of luck with the game, though!

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Oh! I’m sorry to hear that, and hope you’re feeling better, now. ):
I wish there were a way to gauge people’s individual responses to a given game’s content, because the content warnings admittedly encompass a very broad spectrum/definition of -phobic content. ):

Thank you very much! (:

There is a new update available for the members of my Patreon page! This update will be accessible by the public one week from today. In the update, I’ve completed chapter 4 (including romance interactions between MC2 and other characters), fixed some spelling/grammar and continuity errors, and written some 113,900 more words.

There are also weekly developer insights that I’ve started doing and new lore/supplementary content, commissioned artwork, and polls that I’m adding constantly, so if that sounds like something you would be interested in, consider becoming a patron!

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There’s a new update up! In this update, I’ve:

  • Completed chapter 4.
    • Including romance interactions between certain characters and MC2.
  • Fixed various grammar, spelling, and continuity errors.
  • Added some 114,000 words.

Follow my Tumblr blog or join my Patreon page to see additional lore, what-if scenarios, and early updates! You can also always feel free to ask/tell me anything on this thread! (:

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I gave this game a second shot and I really enjoy it! I’ll just have to be mindful of my mental health while playing. Quick question, do you think we could date Lazaro (I think that’s his name? I don’t remember it exactly lmao) in the future?

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I’m glad you’re enjoying it! (:

Yes, please! You make sure to take care of yourself – one’s mental health is more important than me retaining readership.

You remembered it right!

EDIT: I was a little wrong – you forgot an accent over the first “A” in his name, lol.

I guess that depends on how you mean “date”… MC1 can go on a little “date” with him if you choose to attend Gensburg College, go to Belvidere’s party, look for others at the party, and accept his invitation to go for a walk. MC2 gets a similar “alone time” experience with him if you choose to have them stay with the radicals during the summer after the expedition. If you’re just talking about him being a(n) (a)romantic interest in general, though, then the answer is “yes” for both main characters! (:

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Notice About the Frequency of Future Updates

So, some of you may know that I was working on Years while trying to find another job. This week, that finally happened! And while that means a more stable life for me, it also means that I will have less time to work on personal projects. I’m not going to stop writing Years or go on hiatus or anything, but I wanted to let people know that updates will be slower than they have in the past.

I will, of course, still be (inter)active with everyone on the forum thread, Tumblr, and Patreon. Thank you for reading and I hope you all have a wonderful day! (:

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First, congratulation on finding a job! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

Second, sorry for taking so long to play this update, I had a backlog and I’m also busy with a move :sweat_smile:

Now, with that being said, cool update, and I’m so thrilled about the Heroes being revealed!
At this point, I’m mostly curious about what will happen next, really!

The one small issue I had (nothing much):
If both MCs are with the Radicals (or well, at least if MC2 is with them) and I talk to Laz, the “What do you think about the Heroics?” and the “What do you suppose the Heroics want to talk about?” options don’t disappear once selected.

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Thank you! (:

Haha, it’s fine! I hope everything went well with moving!

Lots and lots of drama!

Got it! It should be fixed in the next update. (:

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So, in this wip I can make my two mc´s romance eachother? 10/10

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That’s right!

Thank you! (:

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Hi! So first, I love this story. It’s fun jumping back and forth between two MCs and I love making them opposites of each other all the time.

Second, I don’t know if this is just an oops or something else, but on my current playthrough MC1 was a female and MC2 was a male, but my male MC kept being referred to as female? Also at the part where MC1 gets called in to speak to the guard, MC2 gets threatened even though MC2 isn’t with MC1 and stayed with the frontierpeople so it doesn’t seem to make sense to me that MC2 is threatened when there is currently no connection between them as far as other people know?

And then the fact that while MC1 has a high society reputation stat I feel it’s unfair for the guard to accuse MC1 of whatevering with radicals when MC1 has never done anything to lead to a belief that MC1 is against the Natural Order and stuff?

Just my take on things that I’ve noticed at the moment and obviously maybe there’s rhyme and reason for some of it that we’ve yet to see.

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Thank you! (:

I probably made a typo in the pronoun variables somewhere. Do you happen to remember where this occurred?

This was originally a consequence of me forgetting that MC2 had the option to stay with either the radicals or the Frontiersmen, but I fixed it and kept some of the dialogue in to hint that the Faceless Guard (and consequently the Sovereignty) sees no distinction between purposefully meeting up with MC2 and MC1 and MC2 accidentally running into each other in the middle of nowhere. In their religion/according to the “Natural Order”, if something happens then it is justifiable as something that was “meant to happen”, so they really don’t care about the circumstances of their meeting and/or relationship – it is reason enough to watch them simply because they were in the same place at the same time.

You’re right – it is unfair, and you can call out the First Guard when they start making veiled threats (“oh yeah by the way we’re totally keeping an eye on you…”). They say they aren’t threatening you and that the Faceless Guard is just offering a gentle warning to “do better” in the future, but it’s totally an unsubtle accusation of being radical-adjacent, even if MC1’s only real association with “radical” ideals is their Grandfather (and even then they don’t even have to like him for the Guard to get suspicious).

For some things, certainly, but a lot of the nonsensical actions that the Sovereignty (or anyone, really) takes are borne from their hyper-vigilance (read: paranoia) surrounding any perceived threats to those in power that don’t want their ivory tower to start crumbling underfoot, so to speak.

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I was curious about something about MC1: can he be some kind of traditionalist (not like 80%, but like 55%-60%) and be religious and still be able to side with the radicals? I mean, I´m doing that playtrough right now, with a kind MC1, it would be interesting how would that play out in the end. Im curious about how a cruel MC1 would interact, but I don´t wanna hurt the characters :cold_sweat:. I also like it when you mention to Lazaro that the heroics would accept a student from the fellowship academy. Also, it is kinda cute when the MC1 and MC2 interact in a romantic way, please add more of that :weary: :weary: :weary:

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Yes, even if you are 80% traditionalist. The radicals will accept you regardless of your political affiliation before the Wrought Count’s Sail explosion, though it’s up to you if you think it would be realistic for your character to go with them or not. Now, a traditionalist MC1 among the radicals will be heavily scrutinized (and even mocked), but they’ll still be permitted to help.

Even the traditionalists/Sovereignty will accept a radical-leaning MC1 (the cut-off stat for rejection is tied to MC1’s personal relationship with Blythe).

In the specific route you mentioned? As I recall, there are some opportunities to use MC1’s unique perspective as a Fellow-in-training, but it’s mostly informative text (i.e. “oh we learned about that in the academy” or “the Fellowship teaches X, not Y” kind of dialogue).

Don’t worry, there’ll be more of that, soon! (;

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This is one of my favorite WIPs I’ve played so far! I want to try to avoid spoilers, but here’s my thoughts:

Firstly, I love all the care and detail that goes into your worldbuilding and lore, it makes the world feel so complex and real. It’s really immersive. Every character has their own personalities and opinions, the groups of people who populate the world are unique in their appearance, culture, traditions and lifestyles, and even their language. It was very cool to have a conversation between two characters who speak different languages and see how that would work. The world has its own history and politics that can be difficult to keep track of but is always interesting to learn about. I appreciate that details about the world and its history and culture are never given in a huge lore dump but are naturally sprinkled throughout the story so you can learn as you experience it without being overwhelmed. It’s pretty easy to understand how this world works, but you still want to know more about it. The conflict is so tense and it’s obvious that the stakes are high - being a revolutionary is not fun or easy! But siding with the Sovereignty isn’t easy, either, having to walk on eggshells to avoid being accused of not following the “Natural Order” under the constant threat of punishment - there’s no security for you, either.

I like the idea of having relationship “stats” instead of normal stats. Firstly, it’s kind of nice to not have normal stats to have to keep track of, and feels more natural. But it also forces the player to pay close attention to how they treat others, what they say around certain people, who they interact with, etc. It adds to the tension very nicely, knowing that not great things might happen to you if you don’t have good relationships with certain characters - made worse by the fear of knowing that you can’t please everyone and will inevitably upset somebody no matter what you do.

I absolutely love the concept of two playable characters, it’s something I rarely see but I really enjoy. I especially like that the two characters come from different backgrounds, giving them different perspectives. There’s a “you can’t choose who you’re born as, but you can choose your actions” element to it. It might be controversial or understandably triggering to some but I really appreciate that you don’t shy away from including dark themes, even making them major points in the story. It feels like a realistically gritty and complicated world. I had to think hard about how I felt about things, or how much I should tell someone about it, and it felt like my choices actually had a lot of weight. I appreciated being given a lot of time to learn about the world and the political situation and being given the option to say “I don’t know yet” before I had to choose a side. It’s nice that there’s usually quite a few options to choose from, especially in dialogue options, that allow me to take a more nuanced stance on issues than just “yes”, “no”, or “I don’t care”. And I appreciate allowing the player to form their own beliefs about the systems and people in the world, but adequately punishing the player for being prejudiced or cruel.

I couldn’t give any more specific examples, but there were some situations where I was confused why certain options were greyed out. For example, from what I remember, if in MC2’s introduction you choose to be kind to your brother, you can’t later on be mean to him, or vice versa. I feel like whether I want to be rude or kind to another character depends more on a particular situation than on how I behaved towards them in the past, if that makes sense. Or if I establish my character as a kind person, I can’t choose any cruel or violent options later on, whereas I might just feel that choosing peace or violence depends on the situation. Maybe MC is usually kind but feels that there are certain situations that justify violence? I’d rather not be automatically locked out of those options, even if it’s an “out of character” thing for MC to do.

On a different note, I understand it could be triggering but I liked your approach to playing as a trans character. Living in a world that’s biased against anyone different would probably cause most people to misgender and mistreat you, unfortunately. It was uncomfortable but realistic and reminded me a lot of my own experiences. People reacting to you with discomfort or misgendering feels as depressing as it does in real life and gives me an immediate indicator of how much I can trust that person. On the other hand, it’s surprising but nice to find people who will respect your identity. It always breaks my connection with a story when characters act out of character just to avoid misgendering you when they’d realistically probably be transphobic. I could see an argument for an option allowing players to censor the misgendering, but personally it would feel inauthentic and ruin the dark realism of the story for me. I did appreciate the content warnings for those who may need them, though. Anyways, I thought that it was handled very well!

I’m extremely impressed by the amount of content so far - it felt like I was already halfway through the story when I reached “Chapter One”! That was all just the beginning?! Crazy. It’s the best feeling, knowing that you’ve gotten to immerse yourself in a good story so much already and you’ve barely just begun! I love it.

I can’t wait to see where this story goes, I’m extremely excited! Thank you for all the effort you’ve been putting into this game!

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