Black Closet - Alpha Testing

Solve mysteries by ordering your Student Council minions into investigations. A schoolgirl noir RPG-style adventure!
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Franka
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#196 Post by Franka » Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:17 am

I was trying to think outside the box. 5 sedatives didn't have much of an effect (consider that a suggestion though), but made me curious what would happen if I brought an offering of lemons.

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hanako
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#197 Post by hanako » Tue Jan 13, 2015 5:33 pm

special ending: kill someone by an overdose of sedatives?

That might go slightly over the line for how dark I want to get. :)

(Right now I think the worst thing that can happen is failing the underground case on the cultist variant.)

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#198 Post by zeru57 » Tue Jan 13, 2015 6:51 pm

Franka wrote:I was trying to think outside the box. 5 sedatives didn't have much of an effect (consider that a suggestion though), but made me curious what would happen if I brought an offering of lemons.
That's an awful broad definition of "seduce" you have there! :lol:

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Franka
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#199 Post by Franka » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:15 pm

hanako wrote:special ending: kill someone by an overdose of sedatives?
That sounds cooler than -15 x4. :twisted: Well, it didn't have to go that far, but just something interesting could happen.
zeru57 wrote:That's an awful broad definition of "seduce" you have there! :lol:
Hey, seduce/sedate, it's just a couple of letters. :)

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#200 Post by zeru57 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:01 am

So, I've posted about the minions and Elsa in other threads, and I just want to leave some general feedback here.

I found Hanako games through Summer Session last year, because I was looking for dating sims at the time. I really liked Hanako's writing through that game, and it made me want to play more from her. So I picked up Long Live the Queen, and was pleasantly surprised. Black Closet is the third game of Hanako's that I've really given time and attention to.

In progressing through the games, at each interval the quality improves. None are bad, but Black Closet is the most polished, expansive feeling game. It has the highest replay value IMHO. LLTQ feels much more rigid in comparison. BC feels like a Summer Session sequel in that you get an entire school year with your love interests, and you get to know them better.

Obviously SS wasn't a Hanako/Spiky collaboration, but you get my point. The quality keeps going up.

From a game play perspective, BC holds my interest through multiple play throughs. I find the characters to be compelling. I like the writing. I like the setting. I like the story. I like the way it makes me think about lots of aspects to the story. It makes me think about myself and the decisions I make in life. It poses questions of ambition, authoritarianism, kindness, and socialization, and asks them in a way that it gets the player involved beyond just, what do I need to do to solve this case. The player has to create their own moral code and act on it. And that makes the game interesting. The player can get to graduation in any number of ways, it's a lot like life in that way.

So overall, I enjoy Black Closet very much. I like where this game is going, and I enjoy playing it. I give everyone involved a big hand in creating something so enjoyable.

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#201 Post by zeru57 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:37 am

Franka wrote:Just wanted to say thanks for this game, because anything else would be rude. I've been busy playing, which of course is the greatest compliment of all. :wink:
...
If I could choose, I would have more romance. I applaud the slightly naughty turns the actual romances take, even if they sometimes come out of left field (ok Vonne, today we're going to... :shock: ). Fan sketches in that vein might pop up some day, who knows?

So thank you, all of you involved in this, from plotting and gameplay to graphics. It's a lovely game, and I hope it will be successful.
And I want to second all of this, even if it does reiterate some of my other feedback.

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Cherie0
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#202 Post by Cherie0 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:52 am

I wonder if this is an appropriate question to ask. Pardon me, if it isn't.

How many updates have been pushed out so far since the very first release build?

Can you just play it as it is, or are players who are much more suited for alpha-testing preferred at this point?

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hanako
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#203 Post by hanako » Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:34 pm

I really don't remember how many patches have been pushed so far. None for a few days because I'm writing LLTQ content and waiting on the artist to finish more CGs, but this game is still incomplete and there will be many more updates.

If you buy the game you need to immediately patch up to fix bugs since the last installer, and along with any bugs there are still obvious things missing (all the harvest queen CGs, the gallery, the jukebox....) It's certainly possible to play it to the end, but it's clearly not done.

If you're not interested in messing with patches and playing things multiple times to see changes you probably want to wait for beta at least. I will change the thread name to beta when I think the game is content-complete.

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Franka
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#204 Post by Franka » Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:38 pm

On my last game I had only one actual error throughout. It was a fatal error though, and I had to go back to an earlier save. So, it's not full of bugs in its current state, it's absolutely playable, and multiple saves are always a good idea in any game. The gameplay is fully functional, existing story lines can be completed, but not all the "rewards" are in yet, and you never know if more gameplay content will be added. Please? :P

Regarding jukebox. Sorry if I've never commented on the music, but I've played with no sound for 99.9% of my play time. Approximately. :wink:

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hanako
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#205 Post by hanako » Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:57 pm

Which is sad considering how many tracks there are :P but they're also mostly designed to be unobtrusive and with two or three exceptions I can't imagine why anyone would want to play them separately. But people complain if I don't give them the option!

Storywise I still have "make vonne deliver valentines if you're not on any other path at that point" on my list of scenes to write eventually.

I feel sort of bad that there isn't more information in about the different colleges Elsa might be going to, but I'm not quite sure how best to work with that given the format, at the moment. I'm trying to keep actions and judgments forced upon the player to an absolute minimum, which makes it hard to sit down and do a "You would like this because" speech.

Artifacts of game design again - in the very earliest iterations of this concept, it wasn't going through the whole year, so the idea of college applications got spliced in later. My sister actually works in the admissions office for a university, and when the game length began to extend it was obvious that applying for schools is too major a part of a high school senior's life to leave out. But it wasn't worked in as a key element early on. In-character Elsa would already have a lot of research into schools done before we get to where the game begins.

Also, every college name I've listed is a reference to a specific US school, but in an obscure my-brain way to avoid their legal departments getting mad at me.

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#206 Post by zeru57 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:02 pm

Franka wrote:Regarding jukebox. Sorry if I've never commented on the music, but I've played with no sound for 99.9% of my play time. Approximately. :wink:
Love the music for this game. Perfect.

Also uncovered another small bug. For most cases if you undertake an action that solves the case, all other pending actions for that case are canceled and the case is immediately closed out and solved. However, For the Secret Society case, if you question a girl and find out it's a poetry club, but you've assigned another minion to harass the second girl, that minion will still harass the girl, you'll take the karma hit, and the case doesn't get closed out until the next day.

Also, in situations where you solve a case, and it gets closed out, the training points aren't available until the next day. I notice this because I often schedule minions to train immediately after a case gets wrapped up since they don't have anything else to do. IDK if it's possible, but if those training points are available immediately when the case closes, then the player wouldn't have to schedule the minion to train again if they wanted to max out all points on her.

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hanako
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#207 Post by hanako » Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:49 pm

zeru57 wrote: Also, in situations where you solve a case, and it gets closed out, the training points aren't available until the next day. I notice this because I often schedule minions to train immediately after a case gets wrapped up since they don't have anything else to do. IDK if it's possible, but if those training points are available immediately when the case closes, then the player wouldn't have to schedule the minion to train again if they wanted to max out all points on her.
Are you certain? I'm sure I've had situations where a case closing during the day immediately made the extra training points available in a previously-scheduled training session.

There are a number of cases that won't close until the next day - it usually has to do with slightly different storylines and (in my headspace) an off-screen action taking place. Like, when you get the good student to agree to study with the bad student, the case doesn't close until the next morning because her agreement doesn't mean it's actually happened yet.... after your action, those characters would go and meet up, and you'd get the final results the next day.

And in those cases the training points wouldn't be available yet.

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Franka
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#208 Post by Franka » Wed Jan 14, 2015 3:57 pm

I'm pretty sure it's working as intended. Some cases just need that day to end before they're considered resolved. Others resolve immediately, and if they do, you get the training points immediately as well.

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#209 Post by zeru57 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:49 pm

Franka wrote:I'm pretty sure it's working as intended. Some cases just need that day to end before they're considered resolved. Others resolve immediately, and if they do, you get the training points immediately as well.
Yep, you're correct. Sorry about that.

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zeru57
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Re: Black Closet - Alpha Testing / Discount Copies

#210 Post by zeru57 » Tue Jan 20, 2015 4:28 am

I've recently started playing on "High Stakes", and I'm wondering if in addition to the lack of altered die rolls, do the stats of the targets get higher? I've started out a few games and wound up with rooms at 50 visibility and 50 cover in the first week or two. Some characters seem to have noticeably higher stats as well. Maybe it's just my imagination?

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