Friday 9 December 2022

Incubus Update #20

Hey there. Haven't done one of these in a while. How do I normally start them? I think it's something like "It's been a while since I've done one of these, hasn't it." right?

I've been pulled too many ways to make the kind of progress on II I'd been hoping to before end of year. I was hoping to get the Dating system vaguely functioning (along with two minigames associated with it) but as December began I started to realize I might not get it done but still held out hope there would be time to get some of it done, but I was wrong. December is just not a good time to get anything done.

That said, long delays between releases frustrate me because it just compels me to continue releasing nothing while I work on the game. This sort of disincentives me to work on small incremental improvements in favor of chasing larger and more nebulous, which is fine but it means I've managed to leave a lot of things that need fixing untouched.

But then this puts me in the position of releasing it in a form that's kinda busted up (especially since I accidentally added yet more bugs to systems adjacent to the event launching system, which I should really just replace entirely considering how convoluted it is). So I think what I'm going to do is just release as-is, but annotate some things <<comingsoon >> widget. I made it to explain when things are missing but I see no harm in explaining whats missing, what I need to fix, etc. These annotations also serve as earmarks for areas of the game I can go to work on when I'm bored or frustrated with the task at hand, and additionally will help me remember what my intentions were for certain sections while I'm playing the game. 

Anyway I'll finish this thought at the end. In the meanwhile, I'll say what I've been doing - it's been so long that I don't have a coherent list of what I've changed since last update, so I'll just say what I've worked on recently that might actually be in the game in some form when I publish it. 

Chat Minigame

Right now 'Player 1' is your opponent.
I have the list of players as an array and the
'1' is their position in the array. Will change this.
It's a card game mean to represent the flow of a conversation (I'm currently calling it 'cardversation'). The goal of it is to have a conversation that interests/engages/amuses your opponent and leaves them wanting more. You will be presented with this minigame when you approach a 'roamer' - an NPC who's been assigned to move around in the game world of their own volition - and on dates. Winning this game (Perhaps under other circumstances too.)

It's a very simple card game reminiscent of Crazy 8s, but with a sort of CCG component to it where the traits and stats of you and your opponent will enable you to occasionally draw 'special' cards from the deck based on those, which would have effects like your opponent missing a turn or two, being able to see their cards, negating any special card they play, etc.

Last I left it I was about to start putting functionality into the special cards. I may just belay that goal and just have it as-is. Or maybe not. Maybe it's annoying without any sort of twist to it, I'll think about this later. 

It also has some annoying presentation issues, like cards not showing face up when they should under certain circumstances, special cards having weird tooltip labels when you hover over them etc.

NPCs and Traits

When you encounter a character 'in the wild'
you get a sidebar showing everything you know
about them. (Unknown traits are "(?)")
This character was randomly assigned
"dislikes beach" by the character activator,
which is silly because she's a volunteer lifeguard.
In order for the dating system to be interesting (to me and presumably to the player as well) it has to require different approaches based on which character you're dating. So when a 'named NPC' (I use this term but it's not technically correct - I mean NPCs that are not one-offs, who exist as objects in the game rather than a variable name in a single scenario) is generated, they are assigned several traits randomly.

Do they like receiving certain types of gifts? Are they attracted to different attributes? Are they proud of certain aspects of themselves while ashamed of others? What's their favorite place to go on a date? Anyway, the game will assign two traits for every trait category - one positive (either a 'like' or a 'love') and one negative (either 'dislike' or 'hate'). The mood increase/decrease of each associated action will be based on these traits (i.e. 'love' is x4 for increases, 'like' x2, and so on).

(If a character has a trait of a certain kind specified in her database entry, she will not be giving a random one of that type when activated.)

I intend it so that the player won't be able to see the character's traits (aside from superficial ones, ie 'bonde hair', 'huge ass' etc) until they 'learn' of them. In this way certain features like the chat minigame will serve two purposes - 1) increasing mood/raport with that character, and 2) learning more about them and their traits. At certain points where relationship advancement might be in order, the player might be 'quizzed' on something. Maybe you'll need to remember her birthday, or some insecurity or other she has, or say if you're dating a milf, there may come a point you'll need to show taht you at least know how many kids she has. The game will track what you know and store it in her traits_known property (which is an array, just like her traits property).

Sex Minigame

Sex doesn't need a minigame in general, but I figure if you fuck the same character over and over again via Dating system there should be something to spice it up instead of just playing the same scene each time for those situations (what I'm saying is, this minigame will be used mostly in the Dating system and probably only in a limited sense outside of it. (Some variation of it might be used for porn shoots.))

Anyway it's going to be a sort of turn-based 'battle' where both of you have a lifebar (that goes up instead of down) representing your progress towards having an orgasm. Obvioiusly, the goal is to thae them cum before you do - you've seen this sort of idea before I'm sure.

The effectiveness of various 'attacks' (sex positions) are based on your skill stats but also your partner's various sexual preferences (see trait section above). She might love or hate certain positions, but she might also have broader proclivities, eg: 

  • 'likes cock' will double the 'damage' (progress to climax) effect of any position that has your dick close to her face (titty fuck, blowjob, etc)
  • 'romantic' will double the 'damage' of positions where you are facing each other and other thigns she might find romantic
  • 'top'/'bottom' - If she prefers to be on top or underneath you. (Might need to come up with less gay terms.) 

Aside from these traits, 'damage' will also be based on the sex skill associated with that position (which basically correspond to dick, hand/fingers, and tongue/mouth).

The idea is that the more pleasure she experiences, the better the 'payout' from the encounter. If she has multiple orgasms

Currently this is shoddy and not that far along.

Changer System

This isn't interesting but I'm trying to create a coherent and consistent way of coding 'changers' which is a scenario that is altered based on a variable or set of variables. The code for running into 'roamers', the code for going on dates, the code for the next thing I'm going to talk about are all 'changers' - the code is the same, but the variables put into it. Over time they will be coded more cleanly and consistently but I have to experiment with a small number of them first to see what's best.

A thing that's coming up is I've tried coding the same type of thing in different ways to see what's better, and I have to start consolidating things together to be more uniform. This is a bit messy.

The changers I have started on so far:

  • changerMeet - For when you approach a character who's roaming in the same location you're in. It is through this that you can start things with characters you don't know, but also some characters will start roaming once you have finished the scenario or events they first appear in.
  • changerCall - When you get someone's number - could happen with randos you meet above or as part of a regular story scenario depending on choices you make - you can call them up. I am in the process of fusing this with elements from changerMeet that do the same thing (conversation-based things, like complementing and making inquiries) but better. You'll be able to call a person 1 time a day, and from a call initiate a date.
  • changerOuting - This comprises the actual date. Generally it comes 
  • changerFucking - I am not sure what to do with this; the fucking minigame might make it redundant. Supposed to be triggered at the end of successful dates.
  • pornshoot-amateur - See below.
I have half a mind to fuse changerMeet and changerCall into 1 thing with a variable controlling if it's a call or in-person, but I think it might be better to just chop parts out and make them widgets or includes that both of these use, that way a future changer or event could also use those parts as well.

Complete aside, but I'm actually starting to enjoy the new version of Twine. I've figured out how to occupy both 'columns' with various passages. I just wish 1) the search field didn't cause weird issues when it was open, 2) there was a shortcut to hide everything so you could look around on the stage unobstructed at any time, 3) passages held their place when you switch them between collumns or expand/collapse them.

Amateur Porn Shoots

I just noticed a bug in this system as I was
taking this screenshot, ten points to anyone
who can spot it.
Remember the stupid shitty 'online dating' component of IC? Well the closest thing to that in II right now is much better. If you upload enough porn videos to your account on a porn site, you'll unlock the ability to monetize your account and run ads to attract girls to do scenes with you. 

There's about 10 girls so far (though I don't think I've made custom content for all of them). The changer for this is pretty versatile and even allows for follow-up content. (For example, if you up a video of one  girl, you will be contacted by her furious mother, demanding you take the video down or suffer the consequences. The consequences will be all hers to bear, however...)

I am particularly proud of the post-shoot part of this where you have to tag and title the video. Mostly this is just a silly joke but your accuracy will determine how much ad revenue you make off these videos when I'm done with this part of the game. 

The Plan for the Near Future

In the past week I've somehow broken the system that determines what background to display, and also caused a bug where NPCs follow you around after you leave the scenario's they're in. The latter is particularly baffling and its kind of freaky, like she always appears just behind the person you're trying to talk to like a stalker jealous you're with another woman and not her. 

This on top of my half-complete fusing systems from changerCall and changerMeet together makes the game kind of unplayable if you try to engage with any of these systems in any way. I know that by uploading what I have, it's sort of like an invitation to people to have them download and install it, so it shouldn't be offensively broken like it currently is.

So anyway, my plan is to clean this mess up in Jan, have the systems I'm working not finished but 'functional' - like they can be played through without error messages or confusing weirdness even if they're filled with coming soon notes. Then, by the end of January have something I feel comfortable uploading. 

The real risk is that I might come to the conclusion - either rationally based on facts or just via compulsion to change everything - that I might need to scrap big chunks of the coding for how events/backgrounds/passages are used, and it will take way longer. The truth is the whole thing is way too complicated as-is and I've known this for a while, and revising this or that bit of it has done nothing to alleviate this problem. (I'm tempted to actually draw a flowchart of everything and try to work out the best way to streamline the whole thing.)

The Plan for Going Forward

As I mentioned I want to get back to posting the most recent version of the game more frequently, probably as a folder on (so one can download all or just some of it at any given time based on circumstance). Once the Near Future stuff is out of the way, I should just make it a rule for myself to post at least once a month, at the end of the month or in the middle or something. 

I think this will motivate me to clean up tiny issues alongside going ahead with new things. I think it will make it more likely I will spend time migrating content from the TESTBED version of the game (which I use to start scenarios that I don't intend to make part of the game proper right away).


This may have been more of a ramble than usual, but hope I was coherent enough. Sorry for not posting in a while. I am not dead, and neither is the project, rest assured.

Have a great Christmas or whatever heathen bullshit you're into.


  1. A warm holiday season to you and wish that 2023 will bring us the sequel we needs, but not the one we deserve right now ;)

  2. Thank you for keeping us in the loop and putting the effort in. IC was great and cant wait to see how II comes out. That being said I'm not a huge fan of the sex minigame idea. If everything is too complicated right now this could be a backburner idea once everything else is done. That being said not hating just a thought hope you have just as good of the holidays and new year.

    1. Regarding the minigame, I am going to try to be mindful and not overuse it. If it ends up being unpopular or sucking I'll disable or make it skippable. Happy holidays to you too.

  3. Oh sh1t, here we go again. Are you alive?)

  4. We need to contact Doc to bring them back to life

  5. Hey, just found Incubus CIty, really dig your style.