How much story-focused is Solasta meant to be?

Redglyph
Level 12
3 months ago

I've really loved what I've seen so far in the Early Access and the dev updates. So many features and choices seem to be just right!

One important facet of Solasta eludes me, however, I'm not sure which direction it will take regarding the story. Most probably because it's too early to tell.

Tactical Adventures have taken the time to develop their lore, to present the setting, but yet the game seems a bit casual about it so far. Sure, the main quest is developed after the first quests, so after a little while we see more and more dialogs focused on the problem to solve, and the background lore to shape it up.

On the other hand, I'm wondering what the developer's goal is. Is it to remain casual about it, or to develop the dialogs and choices further down the road? I'm not saying either choice is better, preferences can only be subjective here, and they're just different approaches to role-playing.

For now it looks rather casual. The dialogs are presented as talks with subtitles, they are short conversations, little or no descriptions, the choices are few and don't weigh much in the outcome. If the game was to get more story-focused, I would expect little signs like

- longer dialogs, and descriptions that give a deeper feeling and subtler nuances to the player about the situation, since not everything can be rendered by graphics and voice alone

- dialog choices that influence the quests, or even the final outcome of the game (but that last one requires a lot of work so I wouldn't expect that in a first game)

- a better presentation of the dialogs that allows the user to scroll back, and to give answers in a more practical and natural way (one choice per character feels strange, arbitrary and limited)

- perhaps a more developed, or rather more visible lore, accessible from the in-game "tutorial" book (or encyclopedia)

- choices that work around some problems to avoid combat and still reward the party with experience


What's the plan, what's the big picture? :-)

Tactical Myzzrym
Level 14
Tactical Adventures Dev
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3 months ago

Hi there Redglyph!

It is not secret that the narrative part of Solasta won't be anywhere as strong as larger AAA games. More writing means more voice acting budget. More dialog choices means more writing, AND more game design work to create new branches in the quests that are impacted by those dialog choices - potentially even needing more level design work if it unlocks new paths or additional encounters.

As you can see, adding narrative layers can be very costly if it's not purely "fluff" (for example: additional lore books you can find). Our goal is to first and foremost deliver a main campaign that has a solid storyline, even if it may not be very choice heavy. 

That being said we're still working on stuff. Extra lore through the faction screens or the bestiary could be a thing, we need to see how much time we have at hand after completing the core game^^

Redglyph
Level 12
3 months ago

Thanks for your reply!

It would have been a valid choice not to focus on the story, but I'm glad you are developing that side of the game as well, it's (a big) cherry on top.

Yes, it's clear some of those options have a huge cost and we wouldn't expect that now! The factions, lore and descriptive factors already add much to the immersion in the storyline :-)

Mandos
Level 2
3 months ago

I am so ok with a generic adventure story.  The core value of this game for me is in the implementation of 5E rules--it feels like I'm playing solo D&D.  And D&D campaigns are pretty often "Heroes meet at tavern, get hired by the Council to do such and such..."