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  • Hunger, Thirst, Sleep

    I got this game through Steam early access and so far am enjoying the concept of the game. I've got about 2 hours into the game thus far (just bought it today) and so far my only complaint is how your hunger, thirst, and sleep depletes so fast I found myself constantly on the search for resources as opposed to doing any missions. I would understand if eating healthy food would last longer as opposed to rotten food but it seems like what you eat matters very little to how long you're able to stay "full." Thirst has the same issue but with water spouts available throughout the area it doesn't seem as cumbersome yet the constant need to check and "refuel" so quickly detracts from the ability to focus and complete missions. I like the mechanic overall but it needs to deplete much more slowly in order to enjoy the mission/story aspect of the game as opposed to simply walking around trying to find items so you don't starve to death or dehydrate.
  • Suggestions

    Just going to write some general suggestions and summaries of things I really liked/didn't like so far in my playthrough.

    Day/Night Cycle:
    + I am a HUGE fan of having dynamic events that occur either only during the day or only during night-time. It provides two distinctly different atmospheres within which you can play the game, and I think it definitely enhances the immersion of it all in the long run. Definitely a plus in my book.

    - I think that the Day/Night Cycle could absolutely be a bit longer, or at least more under the player's control. I find that there's not really enough time to fully commit to quests during the day or night without the time-frame changing halfway through the quest I'm trying to accomplish. The general pacing of the cycle feels rushed and it feels like I'm constantly in a hurry to get stuff done, or to explore. I'm not a huge fan of it. I understand that the passage of time needs to be paced relatively well, but I also feel like I should have time enough to accomplish what I'm setting out to accomplish.

    + Overall, always a positive mechanic that helps keep the player in a more 'survival' type of mood. I think that the cost of stamina regeneration versus conformity decreasing negatives is a good, strong gameplay mechanic that keeps the player honest and helps them balance their actions throughout the course of the day.

    - Again, almost all of these mechanics make me feel rushed while I'm playing. I feel as though I'm constantly scarfing down food to keep up with the day/night cycle, and that exhaustion cuts my actual ability to explore and discover the area that's available to me to a startlingly short time frame. Some gentle tweaks in making this a bit more forgiving, or some form of 'difficulty level' or slider that I can use to adjust this, along with the day/night cycle, would be preferable.

    Inventory System:
    + Keeping the player moving back and forth between the safe area is a fantastic idea, because it forces them to go out and explore in batches.

    - I quickly find, however, that because of the amount of food I scarf down in a day, most of my inventory is filled with food and water items. Otherwise, I don't particularly see a huge problem with this. It means I have to actually think about what I'm doing and manage my plans for the day accordingly.

    Map Markers and Quest System:
    + Relatively clean - good, concise legend and very easy to follow.

    - Alright. I have a bunch of problems with this, believe it or not, and I think that most of them are because the map isn't /quite/ working as intended. I have a number of map markers that stay beyond their usefulness and a lot of map markers that are just... in the wrong spot. It seems to vary /slightly/ with the game that I'm playing, but in general they just... aren't... correct.

    - Further, I would like the ability to toggle and track quests so that I can narrow my focus down to one particular quest at a time so that I'm not constantly having to try and hunt down the quest that I'm looking for, and I can just kind of follow it on the compass hud at the top of the screen.

    - Also, I'm not sure if this is intended, but I'm a big fan of having every quest have a map marker. While I understand this may break the immersion for some, I feel like an option could be added to toggle map markers off at least until you've uncovered the part of the map that you're looking for. Unless each quest is very clear and deliberate in what you're looking for, however, a map marker for at least the general region you should be looking in is incredibly helpful. Especially if you are trying to use a limited resource in order to locate your quest objective. [Looking at you Johnny Bolton and your Mystery House]

    Other than that, there are some bugs that I found with quests, including some script misfires and a couple of broken NPCs, but I'll post something in the bug reports forum.

    Overall? I love what I've played so far and I absolutely look forward to the final version of the game. I'll make certain to recommend it to my friends. Keep up the amazing work guys!
  • Hunger, Thirst, Sleep

    Thanks for your feedback, you all. We may work on the balance in the coming weeks.
  • Community Balance Update - Preview Branch - 28596

    • House of Curious Behaviors now set to spawn randomly, i.e. not always in a world generation.
    • Mysterious Chest set to respawn new contents every twenty-four hours.
    • Minor realization improvements and objectives changes to Thirsty Wastrels. Still a work in progress.
    • Realization improvements to Faraday’s Workshop. Repaired broken POIs (Roger should now pole dance again).
    • Realization improvements to Blood in the Streets.
    • Realization and objective changes to Poisoned Wastrel.
    • Biological Hazard no longer causes plague but may cause infection.
    • Walkabout yields more power cells on completion.
    • Added objective to Shibboleth to point players towards searching the suitcase.
    • Lovebirds active only during the day. Fixed twitching/teleporting characters.
    • The Broken Police Box now gives you metal bits and mechanical parts; tweaked interaction duration and added save game support.
    • Mrs. Stokes encounter no longer always spawns after you have played the game previously.
    • Increased damage done by bees - no more stealing honey without a padded suit.
    • More difficult to murder/incapacitate Crazy Legs.
    • Cannot open the same chest three times to complete TV Altar objectives. Wastrels cannot be led too far from the encounter area.
    • Simplified paying the toll interaction with the honey bridge bandit.
    • Tripwire alarms in the Garden District are now better balanced for risk vs reward, i.e. they tend to be less frequent in general but also generally summon angry wastrels if triggered. Also, they do not zealously guard the bathrooms, which was funny but unintentional. Sprung tripwires now deleted appropriately after save/load.
    • Added shopkeeper functionality to Hermit Treehouse allowing for sale of some collected items and purchase of desired items. Among other things you can now choose to spend sovereigns on are a couple of required quest items if you do not wish to search for/cannot find those items.
    • Players should not be able to get stuck in Quarantine Bridge any longer.
    • Public Works now requires the player to assist the worker. Player can no longer drink motilene.
    • Bobbies should tend to stick to the Tea Time encounter rather than go scouting for possible picnic locations.
    • Worshippers in Altar of the Yam convulse 45 seconds; reduced from 1.5 minutes.
    • Cannot kill the chef through the bars using a melee weapon.
    • Bug fixes! Including but not limited to progression blocking, save/load game errors, missing/not deleting map markers and dig spots, potential/confirmed crashes and unintended weirdness to House of Curious Behaviors, Campfire, the first safehouse, Altar of the Yam, Walkabout, TV Altar, Faraday’s Workshop, Lovebirds, Cutty’s Shop, Odds & Ends Shop, Lilies of the Field, Mushroom Log, Where’s the Power, Bobby Investigation, Mrs. Stokes, Thirsty Wastrels, Doll in The Dollhouse no longer falls to the floor, annoying “why are these dumb ropes still here?” bug fixed.

    • Hostility of wastrels heightened when players are inside their houses.
    • Bare handed wastrel attacks chance of giving infection reduced. Now at 10%.
    • Bobbies have a chance of dropping items when drunk.
    • Worker NPCs have greater health than normal Wellies.
    • NPCs react with VO to distraction objects.
    • Wellies do not accept gifts (we need to determine which gift a Wellie would like).
    • Bobby charge attack now warns more clearly by their shouting.

    • Crafting now split into five logical categories.
    • Active quest tracking
    • Objective markers now drawn on top layer of map.
    • Toxic waste spawners now marked on map.
    • Adjustments to multiple pickups that should prevent them from falling through the ground/floor if dropped.
    • Updated inventory icons for clean bandage, antiseptic, sewing kit.
    • Long subtitles split properly.

    • Constrained repetitive wastrel barks to trigger only when player is in proximity rather than in LOS.
    • General fixes to in-game text for clarity and typos.
    • Fix to fresnel glass material for telephone booths (graphical glitch fix).
    • Added missing beds, chairs, stoves to houses in second Garden District island.
    • Vomit decals now show up in the environment more frequently.
    • Multiple new NPC skin/wardrobe variants.
    • Added new NPC barks/VO.
    • Tweaks/improvements to select vfx.
    • Added some new weapons breaking vfx.
    • Visual improvements to banger tripwire explosions.
    • Disabled foliage dithering (caused black splotches on trees).
    • Reduced emissive properties on some vfx so that they do not blind you at night/in the dark.
    • Added new sewing kit model.
    • Performance optimizations for PC (already in Xbox build).
    • Retargeted animations for crier weeping.
    • Tweaked hand pose for some encounter props.
    • Additional encounter facial/mouth animations for dialogue.
    • Created flashlight hold animations, tweaked socket on mesh.
    • Updated OD animation.
    • Music box distraction object animates.
    • Player can no longer see outside the world in the intro sequence.

    • Gamepad aim acceleration tunable.
    • Separated X and Y aim sensitivities for both mouse and gamepad (symmetric by default).
    • Added gamepad aim dead zone setting.
    • Reduced gamepad rotation smoothing.
  • Weekly Journal - 26/08/2016 - New Quest System explained


    Sorry to interrupt the weekly update folks…

    But, I have it from a good source here at the Wellington Wells Police Department (Constable Constable) that that rascal of a scientist, Dr. Helen Faraday, has been captured. There were reports of bugs stating she was not in her cage. She was seen roaming about her home attempting to escape and in some cases she was just gone—and there were rumors that she had taken one of her houseboys with her, we still don’t know if that was by his choice or not.

    The good news is that both Dr Faraday and her Houseboy Roger have been safely returned to their proper game locations. This week I have personally taken every precaution to prevent this from happening again, though please keep in mind that with such a wily, cunning and beautiful specimen, anything is possible.

    In my attempt to keep Dr Faraday locked up, I addressed some other bugs that had to do with losing inventory or not being able to obtain objects from Dr Faraday. The solution was to create an object delivery system that worked well for both the player’s needs as well as Dr Faraday’s.

    After consulting with a few members of the team, I went with a Pneumatic Delivery System. Basically, it works like this: You put a Thingy in one side and that Thingy comes out the other, it’s much like the human digestive system—in fact, the instructions are so simple that even Roger and James could use it, if they were allowed.
    In other news, I spent my remaining time this week working on other quest issues around town to help make your experience with encounters… A Joy.

    Art Team


    I had fun playing with UV puzzles making this super modular underground/sewer/metro/bunker set that should be really useful when it comes to making cool stuff.

    Thank you for tuning in!

    Compulsion Games team
  • Rant about professional WHF reviews

    Agreed. A lot of the media had done no research on the game beforehand.

    The game is not even ready to be reviewed, it is not finished yet. The worst are the media that left bad reviews on Steam because they truly thought it was a finished Bioshock game...

  • Weekly Journal - 08/09/2017 - Production update and regional price adjustment


    Greetings my mates. Another secretive week under the belt! Trust me, if you’re getting impatient about the story, I am equally if not even more eager to show you bits of narrative. Again this means I don’t have much to show you, but it keeps moving forward.  

    This week I finished working on the longest scene in the game, it was a lot of fun and took me a couple of late nights. Otherwise we are getting underway with effectively closing the shots. This means we’ve been scrolling through every completed scene, making sure everything is nice and tidy in order to sign off on the final animations and mark them audio ready.  

    Adding check marks and colouring the sheet in green is exciting!

    Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji  

    As is now customary, the design team is working on story quests/encounters, meaning that most of them have to be very secretive.

    Eric The Fantastic  

    Last week or two has been story encounters. Mostly bridges. Waaaay too many bridges. Mostly just making the existing bridges work for all 3 characters. Plus some more department of science quest stuff #secrets. Cary made a sweet computer console, and hooking up all the buttons so they work in game is gonna be fun.


    Still well, alive and scripting! My head is 100% dedicated to deliver the playthrough of the second character (miss fancy pants). She’s got some very surprising mechanics, probably things that you don’t see a lot in video games. I’m currently going through her playthrough from beginning to the end and cleaning up any blockers that I come across. Progressively coming out of blocking phase. I wish I could openly talk about the story in the same way we talked about the sandbox but… of course we want to have a surprise effect (with a side dish of jazz hands ?).

    Art Team -  Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH  


    I have been doing really small changes everywhere so I feel like I haven't done much this week! I have mostly been fixing problems here and there, alongside lots of meetings with Remi to implement new textures on old models (gotta make the old stuff look as good as the new stuff) and finally I started working on secret new stuff.  


    Hello everyone! This week was a bit of a blur. I'm helping out on some environmental narrative for some fun new locations that I REALLY wish I could talk about! Here's a little teaser image:

    Another thing that I can finally share is this concept of Arthur Hastings. I rarely have time to spend getting images up to my liking, but I allowed myself that luxury for this one. I was really trying to get the feeling of the classic, slightly neurotic, bureaucratic Every Man. As you can see he's got a lot on his mind :)


    This week, I have been working on modifications for a story level to align better with narrative. We have cinematic flashbacks occurring in the level and they were too close to one another. So design has been adapted to lengthen the size of an area - and I’ve been doing an art pass on top of it.  

    Afterwards, I was able to go back to the special house I’m working on. It will be the biggest in terms of detail and work involved - and will be very iconic. Can’t show pictures for both locations since they are story related.

    Programming - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, and Guillaume (sometimes)


    This week I convinced the sun to move in the correct direction. There’s been quite a few of you who noticed that the sun does not rise in the east and set in the west. This was not part of a deeper conspiracy in our world, compass makers are still as trustworthy as ever. It was just a bug, which has now been fixed.

    After that I added some new events into the code for the weapons to allow Ben to create some cool gadgets, including the bee cannon. Unlike our other weapons you can charge it and fire it, instead of just swinging it at your enemies.


    This week it has been mostly surgery of my creatures. Some encounters were not spawning correctly. Well, not spawning *sometimes*, it would have been too easy otherwise. For example, in the new worldgen, crossroads were a rare event, but were mandatory for some new part of the scenario. So, I kidnapped a game designer (thank you Antoine ! ) and with his help, we did some good sleuthing, and found what the problems were. Good times. And yes, I let him go.


    Since last week, I've been working on the combat system in order to improve the whole experience. The first step was to fix some issues related to navigation that were preventing our AIs from working as a group. Then, with design, we iterated on the formation they should aim for, meaning that while some characters will keep you busy in close combat, others will throw stuff at you from farther away. On top of that, we will also implement people that cheer the mob but I'll come back to that in a later post. The idea is that combat will be more threatening, and more varied.  

    Toward our polish phase, we will have more attack variety so ensuring that our system can support that in an efficient data-driven approach is also at the heart of my efforts. Working closely with the animators in order to reach the design intention is a big part of being a gameplay programmer and that is so fun because they are highly creative persons (and I love that, isn't it why I do game in the first place? or because I'm a gamer myself, hard to tell).

    Thanks for tuning in!  

    Compulsion Games

  • Weekly Journal - 06/10/2017 - Eye of the storm

    Animation - JR, Remi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules and Raph  


    Hey everybody! So this week I will talk you about combat animation! We continued our work on it this week. We edited the animation I showed you last week, to change how the NPCs will hit you. The biggest change is that now the NPCs step towards you to hit you. They will no longer move in front of you, wait, and then hit you. This brings our combat system to another level. The immersion is more intense and less repetitive. So now my challenge is to adapt my animation so it fits with this new process. It’s really exciting! Seriously when I started this task, I never would have imagined that we’d able to upgrade our combat to that level.


    Hello people, it’s been a while! Sorry for not keeping everyone up to date on what I’ve been working on in the past few weeks, but the truth is we’ve been working really hard on cinematics and story assets. I did some rigging and exploded a few more objects as well, but the main focus remains to deliver our best animation work for you all to enjoy. Have a good week and hopefully we’ll soon have some special things to share with you!

    Mike (not so dangerous anymore)  

    Heeeeyyyyy! So this week I worked on some custom animations for our level designers to try and make all of our encounters as special and unique as possible. Then I burned the midnight oil making a cutscene to transition you guys from the first island to the second, and help set the mood for the rest of your playing experience. I know it doesn’t sound like much, however I tried to put a lot of love and effort into it for you guys. So that’s it for me folks, tune in next week, same Bat Time, same Bat channel!

    Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH


    I did a new character this week! I call him my little monster, because he is made of many other characters. Unfortunately he is story related so I can’t show him. After him, I did a bunch of different things, I destroyed a location, worked on one of the bridges, a house, and created some variations of textures for some characters. It has been a really busy week, and probably next week will be busier, but we are getting there!


    Hey folks! Sarah and I are busting our butts to finish the 2d assets that support the environmental narrative in the game. All secret, juicy stuff for the release. I can show you something, though. Here's the Doctor rendered in a classic painting style.


    Wow! This week I worked on a lot of assets, but mostly small ones. I did variations and I retextured various works. No time to be bored, I switched from environmental assets to character assets. Also, do you remember all the parachute stuff I made last week? I finally finished the parachute’s bag itself.


    This week was a rollercoaster of disciplines, from bug fixing to arting up secret story levels, to rain FX, World Map visual FX or planning one massive section of the game! Good thing is it all ended up being pretty amazing, above all expectations! Here is a wallpaper of an “ideal” look for our country roads!


    Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more)

    Mike C  


    Hi! I’m Mike, the Director of Production here at Gearbox Publishing. This week, besides trying out a new hair color (this month its fuchsia), the team and I started the submissions process to get ratings for all territories. This starts out with conversations with representatives at each ratings board (ESRB, PEGI, USK, etc.), as each territory rates elements differently. At the same time, we work with the team at Compulsion to get the most comprehensive slices of the game to give an accurate representation of what the full game will entail. The goal is not to censor any part of the game, but rather to make sure the game is properly rated so that customers around the world with cultural differences in ratings and sensitivities understand and enjoy the content. 

    We're super excited about what's in the final game, and we can't wait to make it available to the world!

    Have a great long weekend everyone! (It’s Canadian Thanksgiving)  

    Compulsion Games

  • Weekly Journal - 13/10/2017 - Two weeks until content complete

    Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes)  


    So with world generation, the thing is that despite all its advantages, it is hard to test. And the QA people are nice, but they don’t like untestable stuff. So they invited me to a meeting. Once we all sit, they just stared at me with a nice, silent pacino vibe and I stared back… for a while. I kept my poker face approximately 5 sec. In the end, I just built a better logging system for them to check the worldgen. Also hunted down bad data that was making the system barf. Of course, not everything is true in the above paragraph but who would read programmers’ reports if it was ?


    This week I have been working on Miss Thigh Highs’ exclusive items. Physically, she may be a weaker character but she has particular talents that make up for any lack of brawn. These items are quite interesting to work on as they can involve several areas of the games (animation, AI, …etc.). I hope you guys will enjoy using them ! :D

    Publishing Team – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more)  


    Hi! I’m Elisa, the New Media Manager here at Gearbox. New Media is the umbrella term for all the cool new ways folks are creating content, such as podcasts, streams, and video. Right now, I’m starting prep for TwitchCon next week. At TwitchCon, I’ll meet with Twitch staff, streamers, and other game developers and publishers to learn as much as I can about putting together livestreams and working with streamers to make sure they can deliver a fun experience for their audiences. As a streamer in my (limited) spare time, I’m always curious to know what tips and tricks broadcasters have to make their streams unique, high-quality, and entertaining. I’ll eventually translate what I’ve learned to the streams we produce from our own space here at Gearbox Publishing. I’m also looking forward to meeting with broadcasters that are a perfect fit and would have a blast showing off We Happy Few to the world!Feel free to come say Hi!

    Thanks for tuning in!  

    Compulsion Games