A new world emerges: Shattered Veil

Enter Shattered Veil

I’ll let the game speak for itself. What I’d really like is honest feedback. Good, Bad, Typos, Bugs, Anything and Everything.
I can’t quit my job to make this world, but I can say, I will continue to polish and add content as long as someone has as much fun playing it as I do making it.

Thank you in advance - Azreul
edited by Azreul on 12/12/2012
edited by Azreul on 12/12/2012

Welcome to the community, Azreul! It’s always good to see new authors and new worlds.

So I’ve played a bit of Azreul and below are my thoughts as I was playing. They are pretty critical but don’t let that discourage you. I really am curious to see more (and more detail) of the Bastion and the wider world. Keep it up!

I chose: Desert Drifter,

  • Bastion’s banner image is the default blue ‘Welcome to StoryNexus beta!’. Consider changing so banner colour matches rest of theme.
  • Starts with one card. Make it a Must card?
  • Woh, all those periods, the extended ellipse, looks quite unprofessional and messy. Just cut it down to a single period.
    • Goodness, they’re everywhere.
  • Impressive range of starting options. I wonder “Do these represent classes? Starting locations?” Consider including [some advice text to explain the choice].
    • Woh, Endurance 5? That’s a massive choice I just made. If I’d known, I’d have picked one that increased Knowledge or Power.
  • Ability qualities (Power, etc) lack descriptions. It helps to have something to display when mousing-over. I’m assuming Power is magical power but it’d be good to be sure.
  • ‘Who I was’ lacks level descriptors.
  • I wonder why you have both Who I Was and ‘Drifter’ (and presumably qualities for each other choice). Consider using just Who I Was, unless there’s a good reason I’m not seeing.
  • I struggle to imagine what the place I am in looks like. There’s a very tall tree of some description (palm? oak? something stranger?) and sand and some houses. Ah, foundries and I presume a wall?
  • Sell Crystal Shards (in Make a Trade) has the wrong requirement. It is set to require Coins when it appears it should need Crystal Shards.
  • I wonder what my objective is? To leave?
  • Why am I buying water, anyway? Will I need it beyond the Black Wall?

And here I ran out of actions, with my abilities all at 4 or 5.

Thank you very much for giving my world a go.

I’ve since added and changed a few things, many thanks for pointing them out to me.

I seem to be stuck.

I got a message saying that my “Who I Was” quality is now “Tender”, but I can’t seem to progress past that part to the game.

temporary bug why I was making a few changes, it should be fixed now

Seems alright, though I’m currently waiting on more actions before I go exploring again. Some of the cards don’t have options to discard them meaning your hand can get clogged with things that you can’t use.

From the reference guide -

[b][color=#ffffff]“Players cannot discard cards - they must play them, or they will hang around indefinitely. Players cannot get more cards when their hands are full.[/color]
[color=#ffffff]Unlike in Fallen London, it isn’t possible to discard a card. The only way to clear the space is by playing it. This is a design choice, to allow for slightly more strategic play.”

[color=rgb(194, 194, 194)]Sorry but there is nothing I can do about that. I have tried to provide a way each card can be completed without requiring a specific skill level.[/color]

OK. I’ve got to the point where I’m on the road, but I don’t now have any cards, so I’m guessing I’m at the content boundary. So, based on what I saw in Bastion…

There are quite a few things I really liked. The premise is intriguing - I latched onto the comment about the tree somehow knowing where to grow bulbs of water, and the delicate little references to the fact it’s unusual for flowers to be wilting (even though we’re in the desert). Obviously water’s going to be very important here, but not just in the boring sense that it’s scarce. That’s a little bit “different” as a concept, which immediately makes me want to play some more.

Similarly, I like the frequent but vague mentions of the Wall, and the scraps of back-story you can pick up in the library. I felt I was in safe hands, that you’ve got a coherent back-story in your mind, and that it’s all going to come together in a satisfying manner once enough of the story is in place. Again, that encourages me to want to play more.

The only disappointment for me, in terms of intrigue, was the “magic” - which to me, didn’t feel as distinctive or clever as the other themes. Maybe that’s just that I didn’t pick the right skills to explore that particular storyline. But my snap impression was that this world’s magic is just going to be garden-variety generic fantasy magic, which is a shame because everything else has a twist to it.

I would (very respectfully) disagree with Lily Fox about the very first card - I enjoyed the fact that you were forced to make a choice before the game mechanics exposed themselves. It’s just a matter of personal taste, of course, but it meant I was thinking about my character’s history rather than trying to “game the system”. I also liked the fact that the option I chose (guarding the Wall) unlocked a unique option on a later storylet, which again helped reinforce the sense of a personal history.

However, the downside of the fact the choice made such a big difference to my stats is that I felt pushed strongly towards a particular Always storylet - and then I found myself grinding that storylet, which was pretty boring. (Particularly since the aforementioned unique option was on that storylet too.) So I wonder if the balance is slightly off. Perhaps I’d have felt differently if there were more Sometimes cards to add variety - though I realise you’re just at the start of development, so I’m sure there’ll be more.

I too spotted the problem with the Crystal Shards; but if it hadn’t been for that, I’d have been left with that card stuck in my hand, with no playable options. So you might want to add a branch which lets you discard it.

Now, I’m afraid, one big criticism…

This is a delicate thing to say, but I’m going to go ahead and say it: the punctuation and (just occasionally) the grammar were too scrappy for me. It was hard for me to get properly immersed in the world, because I kept being distracted by missing full stops, or by homophone errors (you’re / your, etc.) I’d suggest that you go over all the storylets with a really critical eye or, if you don’t find it easy to spot that kind of thing, that you aim to team up with someone who does. Different people have different skills, and it would be a real pity if your imaginative ideas ended up hidden behind something as banal as missing punctuation.

Hope that’s helpful… looking forward to seeing more,


The road is fully playable, I’ll play through again just to make sure. You may have been playing when I made the Sapling Road a new setting so cards from the Bastion wouldn’t spill over. I made several additions that add to the immersion and description.

I could spend hours talking to you about Shattered Veil, but putting my ideas into words is another thing entirely. I do apologize for the “Grammar’Gedon”. I will try to polish this away when time permits.

With the changes, I regret to say it may be time to use the “Somethings wrong” card. If you give me your Shattered Veil username I should be able to help you get back to where you were.
edited by Azreul on 12/13/2012

[color=#009900]As per the other playtesting thread, I want to dive into more creator worlds when time affords - but I wanted to say, Azreul, you might consider recruiting a volunteer editor to help you polish up your grammar. It’s a thankless task, rather like being a healer in a MMORPG - but like being a healer, some folk actually like doing it. If you find someone, we can assign editor access to them for you.[/color]
[color=#009900]And chin up! Negative feedback can be dispiriting, but it sounds like you’re taking it well and like there’s a lot of interesting stuff in here.[/color]

[quote=Azreul]From the reference guide - [color=#ffffff]
[color=rgb(194, 194, 194)]Sorry but there is nothing I can do about that. I have tried to provide a way each card can be completed without requiring a specific skill level.[/color]

[color=#009900]You can provide a ‘discard’ branch on each card; you can also make the cards transient, and add a minimal event requirement to play them, in which case they’ll drop out of your hand if the minimal requirement isn’t fulfilled.[/color]

I have added a luck or a low level requirement to every card in the fate (sometimes) deck so you always have the possibility of gaining something.

Now this talk of an Editor… I wasn’t sure such a person existed. I have a few questions on the matter. How do you find such a person? How to do you give them “Editor Access”? How do you give them credit for editing a stoylet?

[color=#009900]I’d ask around the community here, or your friends’n’relations elsewhere; and we can sort out editor access if you mail support@storynexus.com .[/color]

I would be happy to act as editor for your world, if you have no one else in mind - healer’s not my jam, but upon encountering messed up (your/you’re)s and (it’s/its) I instantly transform into an irritatingly meticulous little grammar-correcting monster :]
edited by Corentin Os on 12/14/2012

Hi! I agree with Richard that my enjoyment of your world is nullified when my GrammarPolice light keeps going off. I would definitely go through the initial few storylets and make sure they are as error-free and easy to read as possible. Below are examples of what I found in the first two storylets just as examples to get you started.

You spent your life guarding “The Black Wall”. The great border separating your homeland from “The Old World”.

Second sentence is a fragment which does not contain a verb. You need to replace the period with a semicolon, or make it one sentence “…‘The Black Wall’ which is the great border…”

Your life was dedicated to the few trees that remain in “The New World”. The most precious resource in all the land.

Ditto: the second sentence is a fragment missing a verb/predicate.

In Bastion
You find yourself in Bastion the capital of the New World.

This is a run-on sentence. You need a comma after Bastion.

Surrounded on all sides by endless desert.

This is a sentence fragment missing a subject.

Made possible by the mountain sized oak tree growing from the city’s heart.

Another fragment.

The City Tree as its called provides power to every light post and every machine.

The City Tree, as it’s called, provides power to every light post and every machine.

It’s what makes the grass grow and keeps the sands at bay.

I’d suggest joining this. “…every light post, every machine, and makes the grass grow and keeps the sands at bay.”

Off in the distance you can hear the machines of the Gear district. The Foundry and the Coin Mint can be found here along with a multitude of other mechanical contraptions. The City Tree provides the essentials of life <comma> and the Gear District provides the city with luxury and new possibilities.
You also notice a large building near the base of the City Tree this can only be the Grand Library.

“…the City Tree; this can only be the Grand LIbrary.”
“…the City Tree which can only be the Grand Library.”

It holds every tome and every scrap of knowledge that survived the Old World <comma> and a copy of almost every book written since then.
Even though you just arrived in this place you feel as if you were meant to go somewhere else. “The Sapling Road” keeps echoing through your mind.

Among other things, you might like to tweak the chances of success on the four pinned cards pertaining to the four qualities - at the moment, they force you to grind a lot, unnecessarily. For example, on the Gear District card, the first option of Day Laborer is a low-risk challenge for my strength (6), but the next option of Work at the Foundry is high-risk. I have been grinding Day Labourer for quite a while now but still fail incessantly at the Foundry, which increases my thirst. Perhaps you might stagger the chances of success, so that one option is low risk, the next is modest, the next chancy/high-risk etc. which would mean players would not have to spend so much time grinding a single branch, which is never fun.
I think I may be using the wrong term by ‘chances of success’, I haven’t had much of a look at SN mechanics, I hope you understand what I mean here :\

[quote=Garrett ]Enter Shattered Veil

I’ll let the game speak for itself. What I’d really like is honest feedback. Good, Bad, Typos, Bugs, Anything and Everything.
I can’t quit my job to make this world, but I can say, I will continue to polish and add content as long as someone has as much fun playing it as I do making it.

Thank you in advance - Azreul
edited by Azreul on 12/12/2012
edited by Azreul on 12/12/2012[/quote]

There’s bad spacing and improper capitalization in the following storylet:

“Most magic users Were exiled or killed when the Black Wall was built out of fear they may join the Bound Ones.”

It’s also ambiguous. Was the Black Wall built out of fear? Or do you mean to say that the magic users were exiled or killed because the people feared they might “join the Bound Ones”?

Some more typos in storylets on the “Grand Library” card:

“Browse the library
A page here a page there, who knows what you might learn.”

There should be a comma after “here”, and a period after “there”. It would be best to make “Who knows what you might learn?” a new sentence, and it should end with a question mark.

“Things you already knew
Bastion is the capital, and its completely surrounded by desert. I never would have guessed”

“its” should be “it’s” (the contraction for “it is”). There should also be a period after “guessed”.

Thanks for all the grammar corrections, I may have an editor here soon if Corentin Os is still up for the task.

Until then I’m continuing to expand on the the story, the world, and the options available. This will add many new paths to explore and a deeper immersion in the world of Shattered Veil.

Okay, Shattered Veil is now all edited up and shiny! If you should find anything I’ve missed, please let me know :]