2017-04-22 07:59:30

Hi all,

I just found what looks like a pretty epic scifi Interactive Fiction under development. I have played the playable demo, and it is fully accessible. As a demo, the music is awesome and original and the prose is really good for IF. Gameplay is also unique.

Here's the problem: I can't back it on Kickstarter. I was able to back a Heroes Call with my Discover card, so why when I login to back this one is that option not available?

Despite my kickstarter problems, you can learn more and download the fully accessible playable demo at:
http://alcyonegame.com

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2017-04-22 12:52:05

hello, the game seams very good from what I've played so far and I hope the campagne gets funded. quick question. After unlocking the map, is there any more content, or does it stop here?

Bar, bar, bar...
Bar is my name and to go bar is my aim...
Sometimes I'll go "Bad bar",
But in the end its always bar, ahem beer, ahem bar! beer bar!

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2017-04-22 16:21:13

sounds interesting. will go and take a look now.

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2017-04-22 17:59:51

It seems like that's where it ends, can't wait for more, the story is very interesting.

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2017-04-23 02:15:57

Ah, man! Got me interested for nothing! Do you know of any similar games, either MUDS or gamebooks or other interactive fiction titles? Not that this game isn't good, I just want more on this theme.

Role-play? Simulation? Strategy? Throw it at me! I'm all ears for the games!

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2017-04-23 03:43:44

greetings.
for those of you who are thinking of running the demo under windows XP, don't.
You'll get the following error.
The procedure entry point ReleaseSRWLockExclusive could not be located in the dynamic link library KERNEL32.dll.

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2017-04-27 19:47:48

I loved this game so much. It was completely accessible and I will definately back this campaign. It was very easy to use and the map system worked well. I love the music that was chosen for all the different events. I will play the demo through a few times.

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2017-04-27 20:27:42

I couldn't get past unlocking the map system. It said double click to edit the passage, but I don't know how to do that, being unable to tell where the mouse is and link it with the cursor. I'd like to keep playing, it sparked my interest, but there doesn't seem to be anymore story.

Role-play? Simulation? Strategy? Throw it at me! I'm all ears for the games!

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2017-04-27 21:06:12

I think that is where the demo ends. A shame, it would have been awesome if they showed a little bit more.

Bar, bar, bar...
Bar is my name and to go bar is my aim...
Sometimes I'll go "Bad bar",
But in the end its always bar, ahem beer, ahem bar! beer bar!

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2017-05-01 08:37:59 (edited by rpgtank 2017-05-01 08:40:09)

I like this story and will definitely back this project. I just wish the links on the map were labeled. Was this a problem for anyone else.

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2017-05-01 13:52:59

For those of you who want all the info right here:
Alcyone The Last City Kickstarter with playable demo
scifi Interactive Fiction under development
http://alcyonegame.com/

by Joshua Meadows
Upcoming sci-fi interactive fiction game for macOS, PC, Linux, and

mobile devices by the writer of Iyetra & co-founder of GX Australia.

GAME RELEASING DECEMBER 2017

AFTER THE FALL OF CIVILISATION,
THE CITY IS THE ONLY THING STILL STANDING.

Outpost Alcyone : the Nihility spread across the universe at close to

the speed of light, unmaking & twisting everything it encountered. We

had enough warning
to protect ourselves as we saw the distant stars flicker out one by

one. Alcyone's old name was forgotten and became simply the City.

Shielded and walled away from the decimation and destruction of the

void outside, inhabitants have lived for centuries with the serenity

provided by the
City's protection. Governed under the benevolence of the Six Ruling

Houses, humanity continues to demonstrate its tenacity in surviving

and adapting to
whatever fate befalls it. Normal life continues — after a fashion. We

persist. 

But the Six are lying to us.

And the Nihility is more than we've been told.

And there's a way out of the City.

Alcyone: The Last City is a dynamic, evolving story set in the last

city in the universe. Centuries from now, in a society left stagnant,

you step into
the shoes of a blank slate newly rebirthed.

A riveting plot full of political intrigue, betrayal, and survival.

Alcyone's main themes are entropy and decay, and the player is a rogue

element capable
of breaking this cycle or taking control over it.

Choice drives the game and influences the story: more than giving the

player the simple appearance of control, your decisions will change

the options
available to you, dictate the path your experience takes, and heavily

decide the end of the game. Will you be a force for destruction, or

will your decisions
help the existing powers that be?

An ambitious story featuring half a million words & upwards of twenty

hours of gameplay, with significant replayability built in from the

start.

Diverse cast of characters, and the freedom to pick a persona that

reflects who you are.

Gorgeous high-resolution, hand-painted digital artwork by
Peak Distapan
accompanies the game text to bring its writing to life in vivid

detail.

Full length soundtrack composed by
Michał Korniewicz
 thematically supports the story for maximum emotional impact.

Cross-platform and available on many systems and devices. Play on your

tablet or computer, the choice is yours!

DOWNLOAD THE DEMO HERE
macOS 
http://alcyone.s3.amazonaws.com/mac-x64.zip
Linux 
http://alcyone.s3.amazonaws.com/linux-x32.zip
Windows 
http://alcyone.s3.amazonaws.com/windows-x32.zip

Also planned for iOS and Android at release.


Alcyone's Kickstarter campaign is now live
The Kickstarter campaign for Alcyone: The Last City is now live.

Pledge your support for things like DRM-free copies of the game, the

digital soundtrack/artbook,
or limited edition physical prints of the House sigils on canvas. You

can pledge to help create portions of the game, and your support helps

bring the campaign's stretch goals closer to reality:
bringing in special guest writers including David Gaider (lead writer

for the Dragon Age series) and Alexis
Kennedy (creator of Fallen London and Sunless Sea).

Check the campaign out here,
http://alcyonegame.com/kickstarter

spread word of it far and wide, and lend your support over the next 8

days!
$3,967
pledged of $3,742 goal
256
backers
8days to go

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2017-05-01 17:32:29

This game is awesome! I just finished the demo and am really glad I contributed to the Kickstarter campaign. The Mac version is pretty accessible with Voiceover which makes me very happy. We need more Mac games. I'm going to try the Windows version as well to see if the accesss is a little better and try a different path. The only issues I've had are the many unlabeled images and the fact that the inventory system doesn't seem to be very VO friendly. I wasn't able to figure out how to equip my equipment.

Grab my Adventure at C: stages Right here.
You may access my NVDA Remote, Three-D Velocity, Sound RTS, and Road to Rage servers by using the address christopherw.me. Road to Rage uses the default 6789 port.

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2017-05-23 03:09:12 (edited by mixvio 2017-05-23 03:10:35)

Hey everybody, I'm the developer of the game in question. I found this discussion through google search alerts a few weeks ago and it's been super useful in helping me identify things I need to fix up to make it more accessible. Thanks tons for all of the feedback & compliments, it's been very cool discovering that the game is already pretty accessible out of the box.

Once you hit the map you have indeed completed the demo — I'll make that a bit more obvious in the next update. wink And unfortunately it doesn't work on XP, it's pretty compatible across the board but it relies on rendering engines that don't exist in XP. XP has also been rendered unsupported by Microsoft as well, so I don't think those libraries will be developed for them going forward.

On the topic of unlabelled images, since this is essentially a self-contained website are you referring to the img alt HTML tag? That's easy enough for me to add if so, and I can add that to the next release as well. What would be preferred, just a label saying what the icon is (IE, "Icon: Citizen") or a full description of what the icon looks like? This isn't my area of expertise unfortunately and I'm not sure if the full description would be too much clutter for everyone on screen readers.

I'd also love to share a build of the next demo to make sure that accessibility has improved if that's of interest to anyone?

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2017-05-23 03:46:43

I would be very glad to provide feedback as to how accessible the new version is. In fact most of the people on this website will be very glad to help you out and make sure that everything is correctly labeled. The descriptions you need are the name of the character and a very small description of what it is or what it does. Thank you for your great work.

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2017-05-23 05:05:03

I'd love to give feedback on the next demo. Hell, I'd have loved to back the kickstarter project and give feedback in alpha, but Kickstarter won't let me back an AU project with my card.

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2017-05-23 07:35:58

Orin wrote:

I'd love to give feedback on the next demo. Hell, I'd have loved to back the kickstarter project and give feedback in alpha, but Kickstarter won't let me back an AU project with my card.

Yeah I'm not sure what ended up happening there or why they weren't able to help you fix it up — although now that the campaign is finished I'm allowed to accept payment outside of kickstarter if you still wanted to get involved through PayPal or so on?

My plan in the immediate timeframe is to release an updated version of the demo which will be the "final" demo for the foreseeable future; it will include the two remaining internships & stuff like the additional artwork, fonts, music, and accessibility changes. Then in late June or July I'll start the alpha with more content for testing.

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2017-05-23 09:40:38

This looks absolutely fantastic. I would love to support this.

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2017-05-23 10:10:11 (edited by flackers 2017-05-23 12:13:21)

Definitely a captivating audio experience. The highest praise I can give to an audio game is that I wanted to carry on playing it, and that was true here. Didn't feel it was completely accessible though. Felt I might be missing stuff. For instance, at one point it said click the help button in the sidebar, but jaws couldn't find it. It said it was strongly recommended you equip your equipment before continuing, but the only option was a link to continue, so I didn't know if there were a button similar to help that I was missing. Another constant issue I had with jaws was I had to keep refreshing the page using the insert escape command. If I didn't do this, links were unclickable using enter or space. NVDA seemed to work fine in this regard, but found I couldn't read sentence by sentence in NVDA, so switched back to jaws and kept refreshing.
When I got to the map being unlocked, there was nothing at all to select/click. I assumed that was the end of the demo, so didn't think to refresh the screen. Seems from what others have said that I missed something.
Also Jaws wasn't reading words that had possessive apostrophes properly.
As far as in-game playability was concerned, the story and setting seemed like interesting ones, and I definitely wanted to know more. My only slight criticism would be that I felt my options always boiled down to a choice between heroic drama and subservient dullness, are you a man or a mouse. It seemed obvious which avenue an action movie would go down, and at first I chose this path, then thought maybe the writers know I'll do this and are going to punish me for my obviousness, so I started going down the 'keep your head down' route just to be different. Would like to see less black and white options in the finished game. I know how much work must go into these things without a million and one options, but a few more grey areas would be nice.
Good job though. If the end result is as engaging as the demo, I'll be donating or paying.

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2017-05-23 13:06:28

Thanks for the feedback!

flackers wrote:

For instance, at one point it said click the help button in the sidebar, but jaws couldn't find it. It said it was strongly recommended you equip your equipment before continuing, but the only option was a link to continue, so I didn't know if there were a button similar to help that I was missing.

At the moment there's no help button in the sidebar (there will be in the next version of the demo, if I find time to write it; otherwise in the release for sure) and I forgot to take that mention out — apologies there! When you unlock the inventory there's its own button that does appear so if that's not showing up that's a bug.

Another constant issue I had with jaws was I had to keep refreshing the page using the insert escape command. If I didn't do this, links were unclickable using enter or space. NVDA seemed to work fine in this regard, but found I couldn't read sentence by sentence in NVDA, so switched back to jaws and kept refreshing.

I'll look into this, but I'm upfront that I'm a pretty shit programmer and I might not be able to address each program's compatibilities specifically. I heard that it works really well with stuff like VoiceOver but this is not remotely my area of expertise so I'd love to get further help/information about how it all works.

When I got to the map being unlocked, there was nothing at all to select/click. I assumed that was the end of the demo, so didn't think to refresh the screen. Seems from what others have said that I missed something.

Nope, when you get to the map that's the end of the demo. At the moment the game just "stops" so I'll try to be more elegant about showing the player that they've reached the ending. I was trying to avoid having to add content for the demo that I'll have to remember to delete when the game is properly released, but it's had the opposite effect of confusing people at the moment.

Also Jaws wasn't reading words that had possessive apostrophes properly.

I'm not quite sure why this would be, that sounds like an odd quirk.

As far as in-game playability was concerned, the story and setting seemed like interesting ones, and I definitely wanted to know more. My only slight criticism would be that I felt my options always boiled down to a choice between heroic drama and subservient dullness, are you a man or a mouse. It seemed obvious which avenue an action movie would go down, and at first I chose this path, then thought maybe the writers know I'll do this and are going to punish me for my obviousness, so I started going down the 'keep your head down' route just to be different. Would like to see less black and white options in the finished game. I know how much work must go into these things without a million and one options, but a few more grey areas would be nice.
Good job though. If the end result is as engaging as the demo, I'll be donating or paying.

Yeah my intent here is that the player goes through character creation, picks an internship, and then completes the Nihility encounter — all of those make up the "tutorial." I was using the internships to prepare the player for how the game mechanics work going forward, so the choices are very good/bad. They will be a lot more shades-of-grey once the tutorial area finishes, so I guess I have to do a better job of explaining to players that it's a bit "easier" because that's supposed to be the tutorial. Choices will definitely be a lot harder to make as the game progresses. I want players to feel that there's a reward for each decision they make, but one that comes with serious consequences as well. It's good to get a sense of how everything comes across to other players, though; I can only do so much in my own head. smile

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2017-05-23 14:08:58 (edited by flackers 2017-05-23 14:10:46)

My criticisms are really just tiny niggles. The game is enjoyable that's the main thing. The only thing that would bug me in the full game would be the screen refresh thing. I think it might be fixable from within jaws somehow. The fact that NVDA works makes me think it's a jaws thing. Jaws has custom scripts for specific applications, if you open the script file associated with your game, it opens the Google Chrome one. I don't know much about scripting/programming etc, but I think jaws refreshes something called the virtual buffer whenever a link is clicked on a webpage and a new page loads. It might be that your game is loading a new page, but jaws isn't getting the trigger. I'd be interested to hear from other jaws users if it works for them, and from users who understand this stuff well enough to know which setting to change, or maybe something to add to the google chrome script to sort it out.
It might just be my own particular jaws settings that are the issue.

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2017-05-23 19:16:43

Hey hey pretty shit programmer!:-)
You did a great job! do you know why? Because normaly this is not my type of game but you caught my interest.
I dont think i would pay for a game like this, but i am very sure many of us here would support your project! By paying or even another donation-Campagne.
Yes! I am interested and looking forward to see the next demoversion. And let me say it again: This is normaly not my prefered type of game. But i enjoyed the demo very very much!
HMM, OK, maybe i would donate too!:-)

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2017-05-30 04:14:19

Just swinging back again to say that I'm pretty sure I've worked out a way for people who missed out on the kickstarter (or who couldn't even get into it like Orin!) to pre-order or purchase beta/alpha access and I should have that live within the next 24 hours. I'll come back with a link when it's working in case it's of any interest to members here!

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2017-05-30 21:02:42

Oh, I'm interested. Looking forward to it!

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2017-05-31 01:06:34

And here it is! Hopefully this works with your Discover card, although if it doesn't let me know and I'll just let you pay through PayPal and send you a key directly — that should solve it at least!

I really appreciate the feedback & help from everyone here and when I've got an update with information about the accessibility improvements to the demo I'd love to get some comments on it.

https://mixvio.itch.io/alcyone-the-last-city

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2017-05-31 04:38:20

I'm going to go ahead and pay for this on Thursday. Stitch allows to send money via PayPal.
Is that okay?

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