As playtesting of the early game of Realms continues, I've noticed that the overall usefulness of the Wizard hero has fallen somewhat out of scope. I made a small change to the game (though a large change to gameplay), with the result being that the Wizard hero can now go along on adventure parties! Just like any other AP-enabled unit, you can choose to include the Wizard in the party and he will go along, bringing all of his wizardly wisdom and might along with him.
I was telling a friend of mine about this change over the weekend, and he (being rather knowledgable in the areas of games) asked a devil's advocate question: "What's the tradeoff for sending the wizard on the adventure party? What do you lose back at the camp? What's the motivation to *not* send him along?"
It was a puzzle for sure. After some discussion he suggested that the Wizard have some sort of beneficial aura while on the map. I decided to go with that idea, and implemented it. While close to the wizard, all units get a movement and build haste buff that lets them do everything 20% faster. This only applies while on the colony map (not on adventure parties, as the wizard brings enough to the table with pure combat as it is).
Adventure Party Setup Including the Wizard!
This discussion continued on to the fact that if the Wizard dies, that's game over. It seemed like too big of a risk to send your hero on a potentially deadly mission when it could mean the end of a 14+ hour playthrough. Several suggestions were made, and ultimately I decided to go with an idea I got from talking with my dad.
The new Wizard "death" animation and effect
When the wizard is critically injured, he will drop to one knee and become uncontrollable, untargetable, and invulnerable due to a shield he will project around himself. In order to get control back, you will need to build a yet-to-be-named object and use it on the shield. This will heal a small amount of health to the wizard and break the shield, returning him to action. This action will be especially difficult in a dungeon; but possible all the same.
This object gets more and more expensive each time you make it, and you can only have one at a time. So there will be a point, if you're careless, where it is simply not possible to build another one and you will need to load a previous save or start a new game. Kind of a "soft" game over.
There still is a hard game over though, and that's due to the portal itself being able to be attacked directly now. Raiders and monsters can attack the portal which will destabilize it. If it closes all the way, it's game over. Your Wizard is the only one that can repair it, and the lower it's stability level is, the slower it will spawn new units. It takes a good deal of time to repair it due to the massive stamina cost on the Wizard, meaning he will need to repair it in steps, sleeping in between to regain stamina.
That's all for this week.
As always, thanks for reading!