Playtesting: Samsara, Month Two

Samsara has finally, finally been updated. Play March 1757 now:

In March the British threat grows more serious, and your French allies look to Bengal for aid. War threatens to consume your homeland.

Explore an entirely new town: the charming French-governed port of Chandernagore. Enjoy your lover’s dangerously erotic delights in the dreaming. Dip into the minds of kings and servants alike. Establish your place in the Nawab’s court. Choose to befriend cigar-smoking memsahibs and shy young doctors and wily diplomats from unfamiliar lands.

As a thank you for playing, and playtesting, and giving me feedback, here’s an exclusive item: a Carved Jade Bead, which boosts Curiosity when equipped, and unlocks a storylet in the game. Access it here.

Also. I will write you 100 or so words of fiction set in the world of Samsara if you leave me a comment on my blog. Because you are all lovely.

I’m particularly interested in any feedback you may have about

-new characters & storylines
-any decisions or characters - from February or March - that you’d like to see explored further
-Resources! Which ones are too scarce? Which do you end up with millions of?
-Difficulty levels in March
-Anything else you’d like to tell me about

I cannot see any of the March content, although the Carved Jade Bead did appear in my inventory. All I see where storylets and cards and all should be is a blank gray bar.

Same problem here.

@Jack & @randomperson - ah, how vexing. Occurs when you go through the access code or did you just go straight to Samsara? What are your character names / what stage of the first month were you at? (The only thing I can think of is if you “finished” the game, and hit restart, but haven’t actually started a new character yet. Should just ping you into the opening screen, but.)

I used the access code. My character name is Black Lotus. I should have finished the first month and left the game at the content boundary.

Aha. I see what you mean. i just restarted my game and used the access code and it did exactly the same thing. And now I’m stuck. If you log out, and then log back in it’ll take you to the End page for the game, and allow you to Restart/Create a new character. Once you’ve done that, you can use the access code again - and indeed, play the game!

But this is one for the FB folks I think, I’ll pass it on.

Ok, I did just that. It’s kinda annoying having have to restart though. But since I’ve forgotten most of the story maybe there is an upside to this.

Meg: not sure what follow up you’ve done with FBG, but this sounds like a bug that might be caused by an improper/absent HTML end tag. We run into it coooonstantly.

@randomperson Let me know when you restart your character, and what the name is - and I’ll make sure you have a little something to speed you along your replay. :)

@Gordon - I think this one’s caused by user of an access code when a player has hit restart but not actually created a new character - comes up only when you use the access code, which (I checked, in a paranoid fashion) doesn’t actually contain any html (on my end, at least). So looks like it’s a different one.

Though yikes, that’s a pretty catastrophic result for a missed /em somewhere. becomes ever more paranoid about tags

…we have to restart the game? That’s…damnably irritating.

Worth it–Samsara is gorgeous–but still. Ouch.

@Jack Ah, you only have to restart if you clicked through the ‘Investigating the Situation: Report to the Nawab’ card in February (which told you that you would be restarting your character) - sorry about this if you did, I should have just not given you the option. Can’t for the life of me remember why I did in the first place! If you give me your character name I can check whether it’s active, and if not, as I said, let me know what your new character is and I’ll give you some boosts to give you a helping hand on the replay.

Hey Meg! How exactly did you set your living story to send the email with quality change? I figured this was possible but didn’t know how to do it without a time delay.

@HanonO Ah, when you go into the create a living story screen, hit new story, then fill out the message details and click save. After that, the quality requirements section should come up just below, and you can add them in then. :)

[color=#009900]I think the answer Hanon’s looking for may be to set the time delay to ‘after a few minutes’ (i.e., as soon as the StoryNexus queue processes it). It’s not possible to do it with no time delay, but this is as close as.[/color]

Ah, yes, that makes sense. It was pretty quick for me, between setting it up and it firing off - probably 5, 10 minutes at the most.

Fair enough. I had the idea that reaching a GAME_END effect wouldn’t necessitate restarting the game–since the character still persists and everything, and can even (evidently) receive inventory items.

The old character was named Ravana, but you don’t need to look him up–I know I reported to the Nawab, so that’s the end of that.

The new character is Clepsydra; the accompanying StoryNexus account is Kallisti.
edited by Jack Vaux-Harrowden on 3/15/2013

Okay, one more question. I see the new tab to broadcast a living story…but when I go to make one it asks for requirements again. Did you just create a living story, or did you use the broadcast functionality? I don’t want to fire this by accident twice.

Basically, create your Living Story in the Stories / Living Stories menu (you can’t fire them here, so you can create as many as you want and just revel in your own power, should you desire), then go to the Broadcast Living stories bit to fire them - you can select which living story to fire by choosing it in the ‘Select Living Story’ dropdown, and then hitting the subscribe button.

I think perhaps the placement of the Edit/Create Living Stories buttons in the broadcast screen are the culprits for this mild confusion. :)

Ok that makes sense now-a living story has to be fired by a branch, but now we can manually start them even if a player is not playing…got it!

Hello Meg, I have just started playing Samsara and am thoroughly enjoying it.

An observation about story/quality levels. I am able to raise most Story levels or Principal Player levels by clicking through the choices on Opportunity cards, and it appears that I can raise them indefinitely. It makes sense that I would want to raise some of the qualities (eg. Marked by Shadow), but it’s less clear with other ones (eg. An interest in Benigno’s dreams, Pierre Renault, Indigo-stained lips) since I only need Quality 1 to access the relevant storylets.

So is there any benefit for raising those qualities? If so, will it affect future storylets if they require Quality # to access, and should there be a cap on how high I can raise those Qualities at this stage in the game?
edited by Vega on 4/4/2013