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Update #6 beta thoughts

BrunoCPaula

New member
Ok, after some testing and multiple runs (at least one with each commandment, at around 10 runs total), here's my thougths on the #6 update, in no particular order:

1) The idea of having your religion built through randomn ideas and those random ideas blossom into traditions via your disciples is great. It is a step in the right direction and increases the enjoyment of the game.That said, I still think the current implementation lacks clarity, and need to be better communicated to the player. There's little to no indication (save for the tenent color) of which traditions and events are related to each tenent. With time and runs, a player can get a feeling on which tenents go for, but its a barrier to new players.

2) The move from miracles giving stat growth (instead of directly giving stats) is nice and also a welcome change. However, it also suffers from a lack of clarity. You can't see your development power anywhere in the game, and the development power from your token (which is shown when you actually do a miracle) does not increase when you increase your development power thru your miracles.Also, the new rituals, both on how they're developed and how they happen, are a great change.

3) In earlier renditions of the game, you had to build different miracle buildings to be able to do 'em. Each miracle could only be applied once to each character, so you had to build a diverse miracle buildings build (i swear this pun was unintentional) to maximize your abilities. This also applies to #6.... except for the new Spirit Miracle (the holy site miracle). You don't need to build anything to do it and you can do it any number of times on each disciple. That, coupled with the fact that it is the strongest miracle overall (a fully upgraded spirit miracle site costs 800 materials and give you +20 faith and +1.05 development power for each stat, for a total of +6.30 development power overall) makes it a waste of materials to build the other miracle buildings (a fully upgraded miracle building cost you 875+ materials and give you no faith and +2.5 development power for one stat and +0.75 development power for all other stats, for a total of +6.25 development power). The increase in development power for one stat while decreasing all other stats, coupled with the facts that faith increases are really important to counter the power corrupts and arrogance debuffs, and you can't use a fully upgraded miracle building more than once on the same disciple, makes it worthless to spend your hard-earned materials on miracle buildings.

4) It is really rare to see good tokens now. Before, you could make better tokens appear more frequently by using the "better disciples" upgrade, but since it was removed, tokens on your disciples are generally lousy. This makes disciples with good tokens really important, and you need to focus your gameplan in grooming that disciple and using it to fight whenever possible. Preferably, that disciple will be your cannibal/master of sacrifice/holy judge and every single buff you can throw in it, and all +faith bonuses you can .

5) When fervor was introduced, It really improved the way you had to manage your disciples since fervor recovery was hard and you had to cycle through your disciples. In addition, you could use your entire roster to do actions, so it was always beneficial to have more disciples. However, three key changes altered this balance. First, you can only bless random disciples, so the more disciples you have the less likely it is you can bless the disciples you want; second, you can increase max fervor by upgrading your garden; and lastly, healing fervor is really easy (garden is at a cheap 40 materials, and healing 2 fervor does not cost you a god action and is only 40 offerings), so now you're incentivized to have one or two really strong Disciples (preferentially a cannibal) carrying you thru most battles.

6) Points 3, 4 and 5, together, make it actually harmful to gain disciples with your upgrades. The extra disciple slots from the first island are actually good to have since you need a couple extra disciples to train and use when you have miracles to do, but getting extra disciples thru upgrades is rarely worth it and may even reduce your power (since it makes less likely that your alpha disciples get your blessings).

7) Developments lack clarity. Sometimes you gain one tenet, sometimes you gain two, sometimes you increase your rituals, sometimes you don't, sometimes you gain traditions, sometimes you don't gain 'em... Its quite unclear on which rewards you gain once you fill your development bar. A simple tooltip when you mouseover the development bar might be enough to fix this.

8) Island 1 is nice, but island 2 and beyond need more work to be more aligned to the new systems. The lower power levels overall made the difficult level on island 3 much more apparent, and unlike update #5 you can't steamroll the last island. So the islands now are a mixed bag: difficulty-wise it is better balanced, but the rewards and overall mechanics still feel off in island 2 and beyond. One thing I really liked is that island 1 repeatables make it clear that you lose happiness (which don't happen in island 2 and beyond).

9) The removal of +god actions upgrades also leave me with mixed feelings. On one hand, it is nice because it was a mandatory upgrade (since more god actions means more ritual progress for all your disciples and this means stronger adepts) so it helps reducing the power creep, but on other hand it combines with point 6 to lower the incentives to have more disciples. What could be tested again is to have you be able to gain more god actions as reward after certain sacraments, and/or have special god actions (the ones on the lower bar, that spend oferings) also advance time (nowadays only blessings advance time).

10) Not related to #6, but can the god customization screen and the "commandment selection" screen be merged in a single screen?

11) When you're upgrading a rank and the stat has a star, it is really hard to see the upgrade arrow because they overlap.

12) Secret Greeting is simply absurd. It has an event that grants you free materials... something alongside 10x your total health. Its consistently around 1k materials, for free. This is VERY strong and I'm sure it makes it the strongest tenent overall.

Should any other thougths come to mind, I'll post them here.
 
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AbbeyAdriaan

Abbey Games Developer
Developer
Abbey Games Developer
Thanks again Bruno for the extensive write-up! Very helpful. :)

1) Are you talking about the relationship between tenets and traditions, or about tenets and events specifically? Is there something in particular you would like to see? One of the goals with the tenets is to be at least a bit vague, and allow the player to explore where different tenets might lead him/her.

2) Happy you enjoy it! Noted, we need more clarity there.

3) Good notes, will balance it out!

4) Thanks for noting that. There is a bug there that I found because of you. :)

5) Yeah I was afraid that giving the player too much agency over favor might do that. I think the 40 offerings God Action needs to go - it's too good and the cost can't really scale. Upgrading fervor is ok, I think. The Blessing I'm a bit mixed about. It comes at a price, but I don't think that price is high enough. I might add a small permanent debuff to it.

6) I amactually hesitating a lot about the number of Disciples. When I play myself, I find 6 Disciples to be perfect for the game. More bogs things down a bit, and since you don't get more resources with more Disciples, there is little reason to get more of them. I think I'll remove the upgrades for more Disciples all together. What do you think?

7) Noted! (Even I don't know all the rules :p)

8) Yes, noted! We simply didn't pass them yet. :)

9) Yeah, I think Disciple Slots and God Action + are still in the old paradigm. Since managing the number of disciples and their blessings is not core to the game, I think I'll just make the game move towards 6 Disciples and 3 Blessings between missions. I think that would be enough.

10) Hahaha, finally something not related to #6. :p I'll ask what can be done.

11) Good call!

12) That... sounds like a mistake :D. 10x health is indeed absurd.

Thanks for all the feedback! :D Keep me posted!
 

oldgamerguy

New member
Great notes. I also especially like #10. I like to customize my God based on the commandment I will be playing, but this is virtually impssible for a new player. If combining the two on the same page is unrealistic, perhaps having the commandment screen first then the customization screen would be an option.
 
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