Friday, 11 December 2015

A short update for Thursday

Hello everyone!

I realise that the blog is mostly just a series of release announcements, so I thought I'd change things up with an update on my progress that doesn't come one day before a new version comes out.

The main change for the next version of Newlife will be a new scene. I haven't connected it up yet, but right now I'm planning for it to be an alternative to a normal date. Alternatively, it might end up branching off the date scene in a similar way to the porn movie scene.
It's still early on in development, but I've had a lot of ideas on where to go with the new content. As usual, many of them will prove to be excessively ambitious, but this time I'm trying hard to limit myself early on so I don't get carried away and spend twice as long on it as I planned to.

I haven't looked over the default save location bug again yet. I've had a pm on Patreon with a suggestion, so I'll give that a try when I get back to it.

Aside from that, I think I've fixed all the typos and bugs reported from the last release. It looks like there weren't any big ones this time, touch wood. I've also made a small addition based on a suggestion from a player - adding some text when going to bed with a man if you have a framed photograph of your boyfriend and it isn't him.

Finally, I've been trying to get through my backlog of messages a bit more than usual today. I've still got some posts and pms dating back some way that I need to answer, but I think I've replied to more than I received over the last day or two. At some point (soon?) I'll have a big push and catch up properly.

I hope you're all having a great week, and thanks for playing Newlife :)

31 comments:

  1. Thanks for all your hard work, SO! Don't push yourself too hard, be sure to take a break and enjoy your weekend.

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  2. Awesome, really like the idea of an alternative date, or branch of the main date content. Anything that provides variety is a huge plus for the game since it keeps things fresh!

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    1. Thanks! Although the new date alternative may end up being somewhat rare - the central path through it works well if the event happens once or twice but I think it'd start feeling odd if it shows up a lot because it involves the pc being oblivious of certain things.
      I suppose that's unless you imagine your pc as being really dumb - "This happens every time you come here, how can you possibly still be surprised!"

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  3. Cool, I'd been hoping you'd start giving occasional progress updates. Looking forward to the new event!

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  4. At your current Patreon funding level you're bringing in almost $46,000 a year. For you it might not be quit-your-job money (it's 9k more than I make), but I expect twice a month game updates like you used to and like you promised.

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    1. Gotta admit, much as I like the game, it really is frustrating to see update frequency slowly dropping off as pledges increase... after watching the disgusting saga of Breeding Season I sure as fuck hope Ostrich doesn't also get in the habit of straight-up fleecing his audience

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    2. I'm pretty sure its not quit-your-job money.

      Between Patreon and credit card company fees, that takes 10%. I'm pretty sure Patreon also makes the generous assumption that every pledge is paid every month and none bounce or get withdrawn, so its probably safe to assume at least another 10% goes missing through the combination of those two.

      Then there's the exchange rate to £ as SplendidOstrich is in the UK, which knocks the equivalent value down by about 33%.

      So in reality, the amount is probably more along the lines of $24,000 per year at best.

      None of that takes away from your point about frequency of updates, of course...and you could always withdraw your support for the game financially if you felt that promises were being badly broken.

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    3. I'm not sure you understand how exchange rates work. There's no money vanishing into the ether just because of a currency conversion - it's the exact same buying power, just a different number. So it literally has nothing to do with this discussion.

      So if we take your assumption of -20%, then at the current pledge total he's making $40,960.22 a year (or 27026.64 GBP, which *has the same buying power* as $40,960).

      So he's certainly making a decent yearly off Patreon - I agree it's not really high enough to be worth giving up his day job (at least assuming it pays more than $41k), as he's still gonna need an income source once the game is done, but it's sure as hell high enough that he should be treating it as a second job. I don't know about you, but I work 40 hours a week and make about $48k, so I can't help but feel that SO should be putting in a pretty significant chunk of time if he's going to be making nearly the same.

      I get that he's got a life as well, but if you're getting paid the equivalent of a second full-time job's salaray for a project, you really need to treat said project as more than a hobby, which is kinda the impression the past couple months' updates have given me - very spaced out, with seemingly very few mechanical additions that could justify the time taken

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    4. Shit, I just noticed a comment on the Patreon page from SO himself mentioning that Patreon's pledge total display now takes estimated fees, etc, into consideration - so he's actually pulling in $51k *after fees* at the current total.

      So yeah, dude makes more for a scene a month than I do for 160 hours of work

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    5. You're right about the Patreon fees. The tooltip indicates the figure is after fees and failed pledges - I missed that yesterday.

      As for the exchange rates being irrelevant, with the greatest of respect you've got that one wrong.

      Although £34k and $51k are equivalent in that you could trade each value of currency for the other and back again without loss (assuming no fees), those amounts don't have the same relative purchasing power in their respective countries. It's why exchange rates impact international trade and tourism.

      For example, if you converted $5 into pesos, you could get a couple of pints of beer from a bar in Mexico. If you tried to do the same in Sweden, you'd be laughed at by the barman, as you'd need about $10 worth of Euros to buy a pint of beer.

      Relative purchasing power is a well-studied area of economics. Latest OECD figures on purchasing power parity suggest the UK is about 21% more expensive than the US, meaning you'd lose 17% of your purchasing power when converting USD to GBP and spending it in the UK. A more accurate estimate than my rough yardstick using yesterday's exchange rate.

      Of course, knocking 17% off the amount so that you can consider what the relative GBP buying power is in USD terms that you're more familiar with still leaves a figure of around $42,000. So your underlying point about updates still stands.

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    6. Well it's not like it's a mystery where the money's actually going. Seriously, have you looked at the drink prices at the club in Newlife? £5 half-pints? £8 for a wine glass with what is supposed to be the "mediocre" vintage. And not a single cocktail for under £12 (that's $18 US). Those are the kind of top shelf prices you wouldn't expect at a meat market disco like the one in Newlife, so it's obvious that Splendid Ostrich's frame of reference is from places somewhat more upscale. Once you subtract booze money from the patreon pledges, you'll find it's not the well-heeled road it initially seems like.

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    7. @ cubano

      Glad someone besides me finds some levity in others expectations. Especially since I'm not quite witty enough to put it quite so well.

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    8. @cubano

      Cubano, when are you going to write your own game? That's something I would enjoy playing very much. It would be funny as hell. If you need any help with the coding, just drop me an email.

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    9. My own game? But it's so much easier being judgmental about other people's work from the safety of the comments section.

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    10. Haha, +1 Cubano.

      That said, I too am a bit disappointed at the lack of updates and the content as the funding has gone up. Still love the game though, and I will continue to support it as long as it doesn't slow down too much.

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    11. Remember that as the game progresses, there are more moving parts that interact with each other, and seemingly smaller updates could actually be just as much work as the earlier updates.

      That's not to excuse the most recent update, which seems to be no more than a bit of text ending up in the standard sex scene which hasn't changed much for a while, but keep that in mind for other updates, please.

      Also, if you think the author's getting money for nothing (as the classic song goes), feel free to make yourself fabulously rich by putting out your own game. It'll be nice to have more choices.

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    12. @cubano

      If you ever change your mind, just let me know. My offer to do all the coding for you is a standing offer. I've always enjoyed your AIF comments, and I am very curious what a game from you would be like. I don't check my e-mail too often though, so if you e-mail me and I don't reply, just keep writing content. Then when I get around to checking my e-mail, and I can quickly package up what you have into a working prototype.

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    13. Breeding Season oh how that game has dissapointed me, H-Bomb really went to the jerk side and S-Purple would never take any criticism..

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    14. I just want to say as someone who is throwing the patreon $5 a month I'm quite happy for someone to take it slowly. Especially with real life happening.

      I spent about 2 years working 70-90 hours a week in two jobs. I recently stopped thanks to being able to move up quite a bit in one.

      I'll take content dripping out and allowing for S.O.G. not burning out and finishing the game. Although a consistent release schedule I would wish for. A monthly aim to add X and a monthly release which at minimum fixed typos people found.

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  5. Hey, a small little idea I had. Maybe depending on your character's mood. Different states of arousal, drunkenness, etc. You'd reorder the different options for each scene. Like basically to say, that while we still have the willpower to do other things. This one thing seems like a really good idea to your current state of mind.

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    1. I do try to keep the "default" option at the top of the list and unusual ones lower down, but complicated re-ordering is generally beyond the scope of the game. The problem there is that the list of actions for the more complicated scenes is often built up over several methods or across a class hierarchy. It would be possible to rank them by introducing some sort of priority score for each action, but I think that'd be too wide-reaching a change for the benefit it'd bring.

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  6. Bug/Typo:
    You show him the broken sound system. He gives it a quick look-over, and tells you that the cost of repairs isn't important, because he obviously isn't going to charge his girlfriend. will still need to be paid, even though you're his girlfriend. The price will be £40.

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    1. Thanks! That's fixed for the next version

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  7. I love this Game-Concept!
    But for me it is a little bit too "fast".
    Just doing the planning for the whole week is a little bit too less micro-managment.
    And I hope someday we will be able to play longer than just 52 Weeks (Which leads to "just" 52 "turns").
    Hope there will be more group-activity one day (no not just gangbang, but party at home etc).
    Just have to try some new ideas, see ya, and I hope you'll take some of my ideas ;-)

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    1. Gameplay over 2 weeks is waiting on more late-game content, such as marriage. Right now when I play a game for fun I usually don't even reach the 52-week point before I feel that my character's story has reached a conclusion. The final version will include mechanics such as marriage, advanced career paths, and perhaps some long event chains, so it'll need an option to play on after the ending sequence.

      As for group activity, I think that'll be an important part of the friendship update. The next big task there will be adding female npcs, but once they're in then socialisation scenes will be next, and a group activity with several friends will be a key one.
      However, interaction between npcs will always be limited - it's simply too complex and time-consuming to add. Full threesome or orgy scenes will generally be out for the same reason, unless they're written in such a way as to eliminate most npc-npc interactions.

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    2. Even though most Npc-Npc interactions are out of the question, what about Npc-Npc relations?

      With the addition of female Npcs, I feel this could really help flesh-out the world the character lives in. It doesn't even have to be something that involves the player specifically, maybe just have a chance of Npcs with similar traits forming friendships or becoming a couple. It may have some effect on trying to get a guy/girl that someone else has an eye on or is already in a relationship with, or this could lead to some events later down the line like someone close introducing the player to their friend, or for something scandalous the player could even discover someone cheating on them (or using them to cheat on someone else) via the events that where the player gets to look at someone's phone. Maybe the player reacts with shock and anger, or they could think it's hot and be cool with it.

      I don't know. Sorry for rambling on like this, I just thought I would throw the idea out there.

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  8. Okay Group-Activities are too much work when all are doing something with each other... seems the only legit option is gang-bang or gang-rape...too bad.
    Okay no problem group is nice but not necessary.
    What about the "do nothing" (and wait what he will do) after he presses you on your knees... at this moment you have to be the active part, wish there would be more of the "he used my tits to get some fun...and then sticked his cock in my mouth" action :-)
    another option for the "let's have fun (or not if unwanted) without chance of getting pregnant" would be anal....is this coming sometime? or do you want to spare this out?
    For the playtime: I need a lot time at the beginning before i get some action, because i want to set stress to 0 (or sure that it's not rising anymore) before i get some "action" maybe i'm trying to much to be perfect...
    Hope to see more of this game in the next months.

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  9. I've seen other people suggest it months ago, but I thought I'd also show my support for the idea. It'd be fun if guys could have a small penis trait that would have the opposite effects of the big penis traits, and be a huge disappointment to girls who prefer well-endowed men as a kind of trade-off to that trait.

    Also as long as I'm daydreaming, maybe a trait for non-Jerks to want to dominate you, and a trait that to make men refuse to dominate you. I know you've said in the future, some guys might refuse, but I'm not sure if you planned to implement that as a trait, or as the combination of other personality traits.

    Overall, I guess I just like having more ways for the NPCs to stand out from each other, and think those traits would be a good start. Obviously easier for me to suggest than for you to code, though. Thanks for the great game! I'm loving it, so far!

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  10. Hey, I really love the game. Nonetheless I have some comments/suggestions, related to my taste of course, I'd like to make.

    1. I simply don't get the point of a phrase that pops out quite often at the night club that says something like: "...his arms around your waist and you notice he is showing off for his friends." I don't get the importance of it for what is happening or how it pops so often in the scenes there.
    2. I find timing at the nightclub scenes usually/sometimes (not sure) to have a pace that is too fast imo. I mean, two or three guys try to hit on the character just to be immediately turned down and suddenly, night is over. It certainly doesn't work that way.
    3. Interactions on dancing floor is also a bit poor in options and sometimes too fast without anything happen really, imho.

    Don't get me wrong I really appreciate your work. Thanks a lot.

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    1. The line about an NPC showing off for his friends is supposed to indicate that the player is good at noticing things, so it shows up for players that have the Perceptive trait.

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    2. Ok, thanks for the explanation. I get it but I still find it a bit pointless that it pops up too often even when that trait is "on". Actually, the so caled "friends" don't participate in any sense in the scenes and so i find the comment a bit out of place and prob "time" consuming in the nightclub run. The same as some other NPC that keep hitting on the character over and over even after being turned down and feel ashamed. Insistant guys? I don't think so.

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