In his most recent development update for Frayed Knights, Rampant Games' Jay Barnson lets us know that the party-based RPG is just about ready to make the transition into beta status. Just to put things into perspective, here's a list of what's changed since the game's first alpha build:
* Serious overhaul to the end-game story flow and quest line.
* About a dozen new monsters. Many are variants on existing creatures, so it's not THAT big of a deal.
* Added a (monster journal) to automatically track and fill-in information on monsters encountered in the game.
* Added lots and lots of new items and spells. Like quadrupling the count of each.
* Modified the storyline a bit. As the game grew into three games, I had to modify the first '˜act' into something that could stand completely on its own.
* Lots of fleshing out of all the locations in the game. I hate walking too far without running into something interesting to do or to click on. It should NOT be all combat. This is an ongoing job for me, but things are getting better.
* Overhaul on how weapon and spell attacks and damages take effect, especially with respect to defenses.
* Actually filling in information in the (quest journal.) While it was technically functional before, there were only about a half-dozen quest updates that would appear there automatically (everything else had to be player-supplied). It's far, far more verbose now.
* Overhauled trap disarming mechanics. Made it simpler and more interesting. Added lots of equipment that can be used to help.
* Completely changed the spell-casting interface. Added (Quick spell) buttons to simplify spell-casting navigation for the player's favorite spells (including enhancements)
* Lots of tweaks to how level-up progression works.
* So much additional dialog I can't even think straight about it anymore. And still more to do.
* Changed initiative / haste rules (a pretty fundamental rules change)
* Auto-Save / Continue: The game automatically saves a special version of the game state when you exit, allowing you the option to continue where you left off. Unlike regular saves, this preserves drama star stages.
* Added ability to flee from non-location-based encounters.
* Adding new special effects / feedback for game events. Like when you get a drama star or level up. It really helps to call attention to the kinds of things that are going on in the game, because there's usually a lot going on. I'm still not doing half as good a job as I'd like, but it's better.
* Added the planned differences with how different weapon damage types are affected by armor.
* Major AI overhauls for enemy combat tactics especially with respect to spellcasting, target selection, and feat usage.
* Added icons for indicating status effects, beneficial spells, and debilitating spells for both AI and player characters.
* Added key customizations
* Added the ability to click on monsters directly (or their combat stat bar) to select them as the active target in combat.
* Implemented a bunch of feats that weren't working when I declared alpha (oops!)
* Added (spellstones) for casting certain spells that are more powerful than their equally-leveled kin.
* Tons and tons of bug-fixing and balancing and replacing stand-in artwork with. less stand-in artwork