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Topics - Tom

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Black Forest / Not Dead !
« on: October 06, 2017, 08:20:05 AM »
The game is not dead. Hey everyone!

So here is my thoughts on how to complete it, given that my time available has dropped dramatically:

  • Planning Mode is shelved for the moment
  • In-Game Store is shelved for the moment, probably coming back but with in-game currency only (i.e. no real money transfers)
  • I want to add more competitiveness to the end game, so a new feature will be that if a family is defeated, its resources are distributed, equally, remainders are dropped. That means in the early game, typically nothing will be left (family dies with 12 wood, 16 families still in the game - nobody gets anything). But in the end game, killing off someone can ensure your survival (family dies with 10 stone, 3 families still left in the game - everyone gets 3 stone, 1 stone is lost).
  • Later on, I want to add a few special events to the deep forest, to raise both risk and reward.
Once a couple bugs are fixed, the game will also need a polishing and marketing drive to restore the player base to something more serious. For this I will need a small team. Not programmers (though one more wouldn't hurt), but artists and social media people.

Black Forest / Support Site / Bug Reports
« on: September 12, 2016, 08:58:17 PM »
There is now a support site for questions, problems and bug reports. Simply go here:

Black Forest / Steam Greenlight
« on: August 07, 2016, 02:35:10 PM »
The game is now listed on Steam Greenlight. Please go and give it a thumbs up here:

You can also see the latest gameplay video there. It's quite long, but shows you pretty much everything.

Announcements / Please vote for me on Greenlight
« on: August 07, 2016, 03:48:07 AM »
My game Schwarzwald is now on Steam Greenlight. It could use some up votes. If you can spare some seconds, please go here and give it a thumbs up:

Announcements / hotmail has [email protected]#$ed me up again
« on: July 20, 2016, 07:13:54 AM »
I can't send mails to hotmail addresses and I can't figure out why.

If someone has an idea, here is a typical bounce message:

<[email protected]>: host[] said: 550 SC-001
   (SNT004-MC4F44) Unfortunately, messages from weren't sent.
   Please contact your Internet service provider since part of their network
   is on our block list. You can also refer your provider to (in reply to MAIL
   FROM command)
Reporting-MTA: dns;
X-Postfix-Queue-ID: 5C1BE4045B
X-Postfix-Sender: rfc822; [email protected]
Arrival-Date: Wed, 20 Jul 2016 07:10:16 +0200 (CEST)

Final-Recipient: rfc822; [email protected]
Original-Recipient: rfc822;[email protected]
Action: failed
Status: 5.0.0
Remote-MTA: dns;
Diagnostic-Code: smtp; 550 SC-001 (SNT004-MC4F44) Unfortunately, messages from weren't sent. Please contact your Internet service provider
   since part of their network is on our block list. You can also refer your
   provider to

Very helpful, yes? And no, the blocklist [email protected]#$ excuse isn't true and if I contact my provider they send me to hotmail. If anyone knows of a solution other than completely ban all hotmail accounts from the game (again), let me know.

Other Games / Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
« on: June 26, 2016, 09:11:06 PM »
Wonderful game, just picked it up. Now I'm looking for people to play it with, over Skype or Teamspeak or something.

You don't even need the game if you are happy with just playing the experts. How that works, check their website:

If you are interested, drop me a message. I'm looking forward to playing this game!

Shopkeeper / Relaunch
« on: June 17, 2016, 12:11:12 AM »
I've begun to work on this game again. You can check a lot of screenshots that I've posted on the FB page:

No date for the next testing round so far. There is a lot of work ahead of me. But there will not be another web-based test. I am confident to get the 3D client running this time.

This Forum / Forum merging / new structure
« on: June 14, 2016, 08:34:44 AM »
At this time am running two complete forums (BM and MaF) and they both have sections about other topics as well.

I very much want to merge them into one. Each game would still have its own seperate section, it can even have its own look, but administration of one forum would be much easier than administration of two.

There would be some issues with user accounts and such. I haven't figured out how exactly to do it and if someone wants to dig into SMF docs and plugins that could help, it would be much appreciated. But ultimately, I cannot sustain several forums.

General Talk / Help me by voting for the perfect picture
« on: June 02, 2016, 11:13:51 AM »
Please help me finding the perfect picture for one of my other games. Vote here on the pictures that I have collected:

And check the website to learn about the game, if you want, to understand the atmosphere I am trying to capture.

General Talk / Anyone interested in a Unity 3D beginners course ?
« on: June 01, 2016, 06:03:19 PM »
Some of you know that I work with Unity 3D sometimes, for example for the Map Viewer that I started building for Might & Fealty. As well as other games I do.

I'm currently creating a course for total beginners to teach basics of Unity 3D. I would like to have some 2nd and 3rd opinions. Is anyone interested in taking this course (I will give you a voucher so it's for free) and give me honest feedback on it?

Please PM or e-mail me.

Black Forest / Marketing Ideas
« on: May 26, 2016, 12:09:18 PM »
Collection of thoughts on promoting the game.

Black Forest / Game Start Discussion
« on: May 25, 2016, 09:46:29 AM »
At the moment, the game has a fairly static start layout with a small bit of randomness. And also when you sign up for a game you see exactly - nothing. You just pick a name from a list.

I had two ideas how to make it a little more interesting to join a game. Please discuss:

a) you don't pick a name from a list, you pick a family from the map. So the game loads up with a list of villages open, and when you choose one instead of bringing up another list with names, it brings up the village map and you can choose your family from there.

b) free-form village formation. You choose village and come to the village screen. However, plots are not pre-determined, only the common grounds are fixed. From the unassigned grounds, you can select your own plot. Essentially, you choose first where to put your house, and then you can starting there pick neighbouring tiles until you have X tiles and that is your land.


Black Forest / Gameplay Feedback / Questions
« on: May 17, 2016, 07:46:48 AM »
Here are some thoughts I have about the gameplay, once you have played a few turns, let me know your thoughts:

a) taking plots is too easy at this time, especially once you play competitively (i.e. try to destroy other players).
Possible restrictions I am thinking about:
1) if there is anything on the plot, the first take action only turns it into common ground
2) buildings cannot be taken at all
3) add a "defend" action that is more powerful than take, e.g. it defends the plot you select and all adjacent plots

b) maybe creatures trampling through fields should damage them?

c) (this is pretty much decided) - Destroyed buildings and walls do not return the plot to empty, but to a new state "ruined".
This gives both better visual feedback of the events and makes rebuilding more difficult because those plots need to be cleaned first (which on the plus side will yield 0-2 wood).

d) I've always, since the original design, wanted to make gathering actions in the forest competitive
By that I mean that the more people do it, the less everyone gains. But with the current resource values that just doesn't work unless I go into fractions.

Black Forest / Upcoming Beta Test Phase
« on: May 16, 2016, 12:01:13 PM »
In one or two builds, I will transition the testing from alpha to beta.

During beta, the focus is more on the gameplay and bugs and less on checking if it works at all. Gameplay is more or less done (maybe not complete, but the core is there) and we are looking for balance issues, what is fun and what is not and so on.

We also desperately need more players for this phase.

Black Forest / Renaming and topical notes
« on: April 29, 2016, 09:10:05 PM »
I've decided to rename the game to "Schwarzwald", the original german name for the Black Forest. It is more topical, less naming conflicts and it sounds more unique. Everything is black this or black that these days.

Website is updated already, the client will be updated with the next build.

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