Jump to content

Desolation Devs Q&A Thread! [EP6 Edition]


Posty

Recommended Posts

  • Global Mods

Howdy folks!

 

Feel free to ask us any question you have regarding development! Interested in how we balance the game? Maybe how our music man made some of the original OST you heard throughout the game, drop em down below!

 

To note. Please do not use this thread to ask us about in-game content such as "Where can I find X item" or "Is X available to catch?". Take those topics to the Discussions thread, you will be given a warning and your reply will be hidden if you proceed to do so, you have been warned.

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

dusting off my old account for this...but a question that has been rattling around my brain for ages:

 

How much of the story is actually written down and finalized? Is there an entire roadmap already planned for each remaining episode? Is the story written and fleshed out as development happens, but a vague idea is already known (like, the story is written up to Episode 6, we haven't written what comes yet next but have a vague idea, etc.)?

 

I know Desolation was on hiatus for a while, so I'm doubly curious to know how much the direction of the story has changed as development has gone on. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This might not be appropriate to ask (and let me know if this is so), but how do y'all balance between developing the game and other real-life commitment (work, social life, med school...)? I've always wanted to work on some creative projects on the side, but as a graduate student busy with research and work, I find it really hard to focus on a side project before burning out and losing interest. 
 

In this regard you guys are all inspirations to me. Especially Caz. Med school has inflicted heavier trauma among people I know than an M-Aggron's Body Press.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Developers
6 hours ago, woof said:

dusting off my old account for this...but a question that has been rattling around my brain for ages:

 

How much of the story is actually written down and finalized? Is there an entire roadmap already planned for each remaining episode? Is the story written and fleshed out as development happens, but a vague idea is already known (like, the story is written up to Episode 6, we haven't written what comes yet next but have a vague idea, etc.)?

 

I know Desolation was on hiatus for a while, so I'm doubly curious to know how much the direction of the story has changed as development has gone on. 


The rest of the game is written and separated into a total of four future episodes (7, 8, 9, and 10). That being said, I do rewrites of said content pretty frequently and I tinker a lot with things to make sure I get what I think is the best story I can produce. The direction of the game changed significantly during the hiatus - I completely rewrote everything in fact. There has been a pretty clear vision since E5 came out, but there’s always room for change as improvements come along.

 

4 hours ago, qorder said:

This might not be appropriate to ask (and let me know if this is so), but how do y'all balance between developing the game and other real-life commitment (work, social life, med school...)? I've always wanted to work on some creative projects on the side, but as a graduate student busy with research and work, I find it really hard to focus on a side project before burning out and losing interest. 
 

In this regard you guys are all inspirations to me. Especially Caz. Med school has inflicted heavier trauma among people I know than an M-Aggron's Body Press.


Aww thanks mate. Yeah balance is really difficult especially now that I’ve graduated and am working. It’s tiring and oftentimes the last thing I feel like doing is more work. I really enjoy writing and I really enjoy making this story for people to play, but the key is taking breaks, scheduling time, and sharing the workload. Frankly at this point in my career I wouldn’t be able to do all of this without the help of the team (have you guys seen what kind of weight Posty has been pulling) and I’m eternally grateful for them.

 

21 minutes ago, EmilianTheRed said:

What were some of your inspirations when creating the game's story? Pokemon Reborn and Rejuvenation are obvious, and maybe Hollow Knight as well since the Crystal Peak theme is used in the dreamscape and dreams are focal to that game's plot, but other than that are there any others?

 

 

There are like a million inspirations for the games plot at this point. In the first iteration of the game the main inspiration was the movie Inception, but things have progressed a lot since that storyline lol

 

Nowadays there’s a bunch of things. Final fantasy, bloodborne, a heap of movies, lots of things. I’ve really just taken inspiration from loads of tropes I’ve seen across the years and tried to create my own thing. Sorry that that’s not a very specific answer, but it’s just how it is now! More media = more creativity!

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Global Mods
7 hours ago, qorder said:

This might not be appropriate to ask (and let me know if this is so), but how do y'all balance between developing the game and other real-life commitment (work, social life, med school...)? I've always wanted to work on some creative projects on the side, but as a graduate student busy with research and work, I find it really hard to focus on a side project before burning out and losing interest. 
 

In this regard you guys are all inspirations to me. Especially Caz. Med school has inflicted heavier trauma among people I know than an M-Aggron's Body Press.

 

In addition to what Caz said, overall I just look to dedicate a good portion of my spare time to working on Desolation. As someone who tends to enjoys playing games such as Dota in my pass time, I have been substituting yelling at my support to actually help me in a teamfight to working through my checklist to see what I need to get sorted. Ofc personal matters come first and it's best to know when to take breaks/prioritise other things when it comes down to creative projects, but ultimately if the passion is there to work on something, then i'll dedicate a good amount of time on working on it. Also bless you, I try my best 😭

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Global Mods
1 hour ago, thomas2104 said:

I love the custom megas, are we going to see more? Also, are you going to add GMax pokemon the same way Rejuvenation does?

 

More Custom Megas... you'll have to wait and see for that one! But regarding G-Max Pokemon, no, we do not have plans to implement them as Megas tbh. Considering we have our own Megas, it'll just be a complete overload where we want ours to shine!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What are the other gym leaders going to be? Unless I'm an idiot (thinking its currently 50% chance it's this) there are 4 gym leaders left to fight, but 5 types nor represented in g4 or gym leaders. also some quests can be impossible to finish if missed like Criminal Activities if you haven't done it before entering the Archives, any thoughts on letting people finish those quests.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This one is probably more of a Caz question because it's up to him to decide how much he wanna say, but there's at least some info already in the game i can already restate

 

So there's four gym leaders left to fight. Among the four, there's gotta be Ava in there, given she's one, and, well. You can probably take a good guess at her type specialty.

 

There's also Vera, the Dragon Gym Leader, who got mentionned by Aderyn early on during her part of the story, so that's another one covered.

 

I don't think much has been revealed on the last two tho so that gets into caz territory.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Developers
7 hours ago, Scrublord6410 said:

What are the other gym leaders going to be? Unless I'm an idiot (thinking its currently 50% chance it's this) there are 4 gym leaders left to fight, but 5 types nor represented in g4 or gym leaders. also some quests can be impossible to finish if missed like Criminal Activities if you haven't done it before entering the Archives, any thoughts on letting people finish those quests.

 

I won't really add anything on to what Yumil said. There will be certain types that aren't represented by the League - and that's fine. It is what it is. I have no plans to invent new characters just to represent typings.

 

Yes, some quests are impossible to finish if they are missed. Most of these quests will not be possible to finish in the future, as characters won't simply teleport back in time. Desolation has quests that are time dependent, and I don't think that is necessarily bad. It makes 100% completion difficult, but I think that having some difficulty in doing that is fine. I take inspiration from soulbourne games a lot, and this mechanic is used frequently there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What was the process for designing the new fields?  Darkness field and crowd field seem a lot more defensively-oriented than a lot of the pre-existing fields with crowd's anti-sweep mechanics and darkness's general damage reductions for ghost and dark types and relatively small damage boost; was that just to differentiate their designs from the reborn fields, or do you think you'll want to do more defensively focused fields going forward?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh hey that one's for me

 

Well posty is the main field designer but Im responsible for crowd and darkness turning out that way soooooo

 

The short answer is that no, it is largely coincidental those fields were written more defensively. I don't think this will be a trend moving forward. 

 

The long answer is :

 

-as a general rule of thumb I don't really think much about balance when coming up with ideas for a field - I don't think I have a good grasp on it as I dont play much pokemon outside of fangames, so I treat every thing I suggest as "throw it at the wall and see if posty can make something balanced out of it". 

 

My main angle of thought is as a scripter - what's possible and what isn't - , and flavor : how can I integrate the aesthetic and lore of a field into the battle? 

 

Darkness field is more or less my baby, since e5 darkness was just reborn dark crystal cave without the crystal cave transition, which. Wasn't the most creative thing. It actually crystallized kinda late in development because none of us were sure what we wanted to do with the field. So I asked Caz a bunch of questions about what darkness was supposed to be in Deso - what place did it occupy in the lore, what tropes were we pulling from, what theme were we going for, and how did it relate to other things in the game like the dreamscape, the grid, the real world. 

 

A lot of the answers I got that day, that haven't been given yet by the story, influenced what I came up with for darkness field - including the stage gimmick and the focus on being defensive. I'll let Caz decide how much he wanna elaborates on, but I'll say that I was at first split between making a really oppressive field that would be very unpleasant to stay on and maybe put everything on a timer, a la corrosive mist, or the complete opposite - and I went with the latter after I got my answers. 

 

It was also a convenient proposition for Posty, who has long been saddened that scolipede could just one-shot umbreon on that field with massive ease because of the quad weakness to bug, so making the field so defense oriented solved that. 

 

Crowd field was a lot more of a spur in the moment thing. Posty had come up with the cheer mechanic and wanted to come up with something else but couldn't decide what, and halfway through coding the field I went "hey wouldn't it be cool for the crowd to root for the underdog and boost them nobody likes a boring curbstomp right" and I already had the code to build upon with the npc commentary thing. 

 

The idea proved pretty popular among the team so we went with it. It also conveniently helped a lot for the battle because garret would normally be quite open to sweeping and we kinda regretted that, but again - that's mostly a happy accident on my part. 

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Global Mods
10 hours ago, R.B said:

What was the process for designing the new fields?  Darkness field and crowd field seem a lot more defensively-oriented than a lot of the pre-existing fields with crowd's anti-sweep mechanics and darkness's general damage reductions for ghost and dark types and relatively small damage boost; was that just to differentiate their designs from the reborn fields, or do you think you'll want to do more defensively focused fields going forward?

 

To add on to what Yumil mentioned, since he essentially covered it all. I initially came up with a bunch of concepts for the newer fields in the game, and then discussed balance stuff with Crim a bit later on just so get em... right! Crowd Field went through a lot of changes throughout testing since it was a little too overtuned! (it was funny to see how it performed LOL). Having Yumil on the team has been extremely helpful in bringing a lot of new visions to life, he came up with the concept for the new Darkness Field, and then the comeback mechanic for Crowd Field, which just elevates them even more. I do use Reborn's fields/Rejuvenation's customs fields as a basis to go off on/take inspiration from when developing our own fields, with that in mind, you may expect to see some more fields come to future updates of Deso!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Caz said:

 

I won't really add anything on to what Yumil said. There will be certain types that aren't represented by the League - and that's fine. It is what it is. I have no plans to invent new characters just to represent typings.

 

Yes, some quests are impossible to finish if they are missed. Most of these quests will not be possible to finish in the future, as characters won't simply teleport back in time. Desolation has quests that are time dependent, and I don't think that is necessarily bad. It makes 100% completion difficult, but I think that having some difficulty in doing that is fine. I take inspiration from soulbourne games a lot, and this mechanic is used frequently there.

Awesome to hear your reply! Mostly wondering about the gym thing cause I was planning on making my bad route play through based off one of the missing types. As for missing quests, while I'm sad it will lurk on my list I agree for the decision, it wouldn't make sense for them to teleport (not that my agreement means anything :p) Recently finished the story as it, Jerred unnerves me so much btw, good job on that, I think?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the matter of missable quests, I'll add that I plan on reworking the quest system for next episode to account for a few things I missed with the initial implementation, and I may very well make it so a quest has a little icon to tell you it's missable in the log or something, a la xenoblade chronicles 1.

 

Dont expect it in a patch for this episode cause it's gonna be a long term project, but that is in the plans for e7. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am so sorry if this is too long or too many question

 

one of the aspect of this game i really love is what you guy did with characters, they interact, help and spend times with the player but over time they show attachments,careness,or closeness through how they talk, the character Connor spent a lots of time and helped the player at the beginning, and later in game through their dialogues, i can certainly feel some intimacy, or how Ava around the player everytime they wake up, its rlly sweet, the same thing with Tristan. Those things gave me a really great cozy feeling, its create such a strong connection with the characters and feel like a real relationship and not just some npc only there to be the pedal for the story. I guess that is the same method for those dating sim games made weebs felt in love with their waifus😔. But i always love whenever a movie,game... have something that hit me personally, whether being relatable,indicate life lessons, philosophies,or smth above and i find that those things hit incrediblely when get conveyed by a super well written character. Having said that, i wonder, outside what i have mentioned above, what or how to make a interesting, good characters to you guy

 

There was this Pokemon fangame called Pokemon Brick Bronze made on Roblox a while ago, being made on Roblox which mean its kinda has a 3d, open world environments, and its was released in 2015, thats is smth official Pokemon havent achieved at that time, and from what i remember their story is pretty god damn great for someone who have never experienced a Pokemon game story different from the ordinary official one, the map design is good too. All of that combined created such an unique experience and a vibe thats unforgettable. Its was one of the most popular game on roblox during that time, its was getting so big that Nintendo found out and copyright striked it, since then every pokemon related things are all banned from roblox. Its just so sad and obnoxious to see all the creativities and possibilities to make greater things for the community being limited because of copyright issues , maybe all i can expect is hope that someday pokemon wont give a damn about it, or accepted. SO my question is what or do you have any thoughts on this problem

 

I remembered a detail where Ava jumped down from the cloud and leave the player alone, and when i got down she said she was rlly worry, was that intentional or just bad writing haha

Edited by Huuuuuy
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Was E6 and prior episodes written by the same person?

 

Mainly curious since the events in e6 seem to be barely foreshadowed before they happen, mainly the foxes being in darkroot (when we first visit Cellia) and Ava having to go there never being brought back up, and the future gym leaders not being talked during the groupchat thing (particularly Reeve tbh, since Ava has part contacts with him), that whole segment honestly seems disjointed from the main story

 

Either way, props to whoever made the entire Waldenhall chase scene, the music, the atmosphere, the dialogue, everything was S-tier in that

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for making such an interesting and puzzling story! Truthfully, I did not know your game existed until e6 came out, but still very enjoyable. 

Spoiler

My favorite part was trying to figure out what was Darkrai`s illusion and what was real. I am really looking forward to the eventual Cresselia encounter, and if you are going to include a quest to save Tristian by having the three lake spirits restore his soul. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've mostly noticed this with some of the Pokemon that got more of a 'showing' if that's the right word for it in Sun and Moon, when it comes to move lists and whatnot. How does the dev team determine what game to use which moveset when it comes to X Pokemon?

 

And when it comes to custom megas how does the design process tend to go? Is it the common focus of 'lesser used Pokemon get the megas' or is it like a dev team vote for which ones get the next mega and go on from there?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just wanted to say that I love the game, it's fantastic and I'm really enjoying it. Got a couple of questions (for now):

 

1. You've used music from other games, like Danganronpa 2. What made you decide to bring music from other franchises into the game, and how do you decide which songs to use? 

 

2. Why is Reeve so hot?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When balancing battles, what assumptions do you make about how players battle? (E.g., do you assume they will or won't use items in battle, do you expect a certain amount of level grinding, etc.)

With regards to pokemon distribution, especially in the early game, do you have common challenge runs like monotypes or nuzlockes in mind at all when making decisions, or do you mostly focus on the experience of a vanilla playthrough?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unsure if this question fits here but, I'm just wondering since E6 has the name of 'Reflections', were the previous episodes 1 - 5 also named and if so what were their names?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Developers

Oh hey, it's me! Sorry I'm very late to reply to these:

 

On 2/24/2023 at 7:14 AM, Huuuuuy said:

I am so sorry if this is too long or too many question

 

one of the aspect of this game i really love is what you guy did with characters, they interact, help and spend times with the player but over time they show attachments,careness,or closeness through how they talk, the character Connor spent a lots of time and helped the player at the beginning, and later in game through their dialogues, i can certainly feel some intimacy, or how Ava around the player everytime they wake up, its rlly sweet, the same thing with Tristan. Those things gave me a really great cozy feeling, its create such a strong connection with the characters and feel like a real relationship and not just some npc only there to be the pedal for the story. I guess that is the same method for those dating sim games made weebs felt in love with their waifus😔. But i always love whenever a movie,game... have something that hit me personally, whether being relatable,indicate life lessons, philosophies,or smth above and i find that those things hit incrediblely when get conveyed by a super well written character. Having said that, i wonder, outside what i have mentioned above, what or how to make a interesting, good characters to you guy

 

There was this Pokemon fangame called Pokemon Brick Bronze made on Roblox a while ago, being made on Roblox which mean its kinda has a 3d, open world environments, and its was released in 2015, thats is smth official Pokemon havent achieved at that time, and from what i remember their story is pretty god damn great for someone who have never experienced a Pokemon game story different from the ordinary official one, the map design is good too. All of that combined created such an unique experience and a vibe thats unforgettable. Its was one of the most popular game on roblox during that time, its was getting so big that Nintendo found out and copyright striked it, since then every pokemon related things are all banned from roblox. Its just so sad and obnoxious to see all the creativities and possibilities to make greater things for the community being limited because of copyright issues , maybe all i can expect is hope that someday pokemon wont give a damn about it, or accepted. SO my question is what or do you have any thoughts on this problem

 

I remembered a detail where Ava jumped down from the cloud and leave the player alone, and when i got down she said she was rlly worry, was that intentional or just bad writing haha

 

I think there's a few things there...

 

1) Writing good characters that sound natural is just trying to think in other peoples shoes really. In the beginning, I wasn't very good at writing characters. Some issues are still present - especially in the early game (such as Ava and the cloud scene which still taxes me). Good character writing came to me later. I think partly it has to do with working in a medical field - so I truly meet all kinds of people from a variety of backgrounds every day. This has made writing new characters that are distinct, realistic, and goal driven, actually pretty straightforward. I love inventing new characters, so I'm sure you guys will be interested in what the future holds.

 

2) The copyright things are an issue - but I more or less understand.

 

On 2/24/2023 at 8:43 AM, Fiwam said:

Was E6 and prior episodes written by the same person?

 

Mainly curious since the events in e6 seem to be barely foreshadowed before they happen, mainly the foxes being in darkroot (when we first visit Cellia) and Ava having to go there never being brought back up, and the future gym leaders not being talked during the groupchat thing (particularly Reeve tbh, since Ava has part contacts with him), that whole segment honestly seems disjointed from the main story

 

Either way, props to whoever made the entire Waldenhall chase scene, the music, the atmosphere, the dialogue, everything was S-tier in that

 

I wrote the entire game. Although I live under the impression that not everything needs to be explained - a few lines here and there could tidy things up, especially surrounding the Darkroot stuff. Otherwise, thanks!

 

On 2/25/2023 at 8:56 AM, lookingalittlegoth said:

Thank you for making such an interesting and puzzling story! Truthfully, I did not know your game existed until e6 came out, but still very enjoyable. 

  Hide contents

My favorite part was trying to figure out what was Darkrai`s illusion and what was real. I am really looking forward to the eventual Cresselia encounter, and if you are going to include a quest to save Tristian by having the three lake spirits restore his soul. 

 

 

I'm glad you enjoyed the game!!! I won't comment on any future content though hahahaha

 

On 2/27/2023 at 11:32 AM, VMeemes said:

I've mostly noticed this with some of the Pokemon that got more of a 'showing' if that's the right word for it in Sun and Moon, when it comes to move lists and whatnot. How does the dev team determine what game to use which moveset when it comes to X Pokemon?

 

And when it comes to custom megas how does the design process tend to go? Is it the common focus of 'lesser used Pokemon get the megas' or is it like a dev team vote for which ones get the next mega and go on from there?

 

1) Idk man I leave that stuff to posty and the scripters


2) It's a mix. It's very much what Pokemon would suit which character mixed with what Pokemon do we think would be cool for a mega. I don't really believe there's much of a pattern beyond that. Regardless, we take a great deal of time to pick which Pokemon will get a custom mega as we do not want to oversaturate the game with customs.

 

On 2/28/2023 at 6:23 PM, CrystalStar said:

1) what's the approach when mapping extremely large areas like blackview, visinite, east dockside, and the likes?

2) how do you come up with area/character names?

 

 

The goal with these areas is to make a sprawling metropolis that is so intricate it can easily stand alone to tell its own story. The means cranking in lots of detail, and many NPCs. Balancing that with making a city that is reasonably easy to navigate is often difficult, and that process hasn't been perfect by any means (Blackview) but I am definitely improving (Cellia East). I couldn't really tell you how I come up with names specifically. I just try and think of something that seems symbolic for either the story that area is trying to tell, or symbolizes events or themes that are happening at the time.

 

On 3/1/2023 at 6:00 PM, Amare said:

Just wanted to say that I love the game, it's fantastic and I'm really enjoying it. Got a couple of questions (for now):

 

1. You've used music from other games, like Danganronpa 2. What made you decide to bring music from other franchises into the game, and how do you decide which songs to use? 

 

2. Why is Reeve so hot?

 

I listen to a lot of video game music when looking for inspiration writing-wise. Really if something clicks super well and I won't get into trouble, I am not above giving it a whirl in game. As for Reeve... ask Ruby. She can't be stopped.

 

On 3/3/2023 at 3:49 PM, R.B said:

When balancing battles, what assumptions do you make about how players battle? (E.g., do you assume they will or won't use items in battle, do you expect a certain amount of level grinding, etc.)

With regards to pokemon distribution, especially in the early game, do you have common challenge runs like monotypes or nuzlockes in mind at all when making decisions, or do you mostly focus on the experience of a vanilla playthrough?

 

Ummm... yeah Posty can answer this once. Something something balance.

 

On 3/8/2023 at 3:42 PM, Rex9999 said:

Unsure if this question fits here but, I'm just wondering since E6 has the name of 'Reflections', were the previous episodes 1 - 5 also named and if so what were their names?

 

I only started naming them in E4 I believe, which was called 'Twins'. E5 was called 'Somnium', and E6 'Reflections'. I only started naming them when I realized each episode not only had its own theme, but also sort of representing a bunch of things I was thinking about as I wrote them growing up.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...