Improbable Island Message of the Day (MoTD)

Outpost system early access is LIVE!
Admin CavemanJoe2016-01-07 06:10:48
Hey folks! If you've seen me in Banter lately, you'll know that I'm very excited about the upcoming new outposts.

Outposts as they are right now are little more than a couple paragraphs of text and a bunch of links - there's very little sense of place to them, and they also have the problem of throwing waaaay too many links at new players all at once, who get overwhelmed easily. The new system I'm developing takes each outpost and extrudes them into two dimensions - adding a minimap that you can move around in, like the current World Map system.

It means that each square of the map, and the buildings thereon, can have their own description. In writing for it, it's become abundantly clear that I can cram way more detail into outposts using this new system than was ever feasible with the old single-page outposts. I've got the overarching system and the basic skeleton of NewHome completed, and now I'm in that wonderful(ly terrible) place where I've got this thing I want to show you, but can't because it ain't finished yet, and likely won't be finished for a good few months yet.

So then I got to thinking, and I got to chatting in Banter, and a solution came up. The solution is early access for site supporters!

There's a new item in the Hunter's Lodge that'll give you access to the new NewHome. It is the Dimensional Phaser! I made the price pretty high for several reasons:

1) It's very special. You'll get to see new updates to Outposts as I write them, rather than waiting for them all to be done, which will likely be months down the line. You'll get the chance to give me immediate feedback and shape the whole thing as I write it, so we can be sure of making something really awesome!
2) A bunch of you have a load of spare SP knocking about because you've been donating to get the Monthly Mementos and then not needing any of the things in the Lodge, so I don't think many people are gonna have to shell out the actual cash.
3) It's GIFTABLE! And what's more, unlike a lot of other Hunter's Lodge things, it's giftable after it's been used. If you can't afford to grab a Dimensional Phaser for yourself, I bet there'll be plenty of folks willing to lend you theirs so you can go in and have a look around!
4) Emily and I are still broke from replacing the van. :)

Of course, even if you can't get your hands on a Dimensional Phaser, don't worry - there are awesome things coming for you anyway. I plan to go through each and every Outpost interaction and tighten it up a bit - fixing little annoyances like the exit links not always being on the same hotkey, being able to go from the jungle straight to the world map without having to go back into the outpost first, a re-theme for the chop shop and bank (which has had the same text since we opened in 2008), that kind of thing. Plus, you'll all get access to the new outposts once they're finished later this year, after the early adopters have thoroughly tested them, critiqued them, and helped me come up with fun ideas for them!

Now, I cannot stress highly enough that what's going live tonight is just a very, very early alpha. I don't want anyone to be disappointed, so I've gotta tell you that so far only the new version of NewHome is online in even the most rudimentary sense - none of the other new outposts even exist at all yet. And while NewHome is packed with detail, it's not yet packed with life - things like Stox, Onslaught, time and weather flavour text and the crazy lady who sings the NewHome is Full of Noobs song aren't yet wired up. But you will get to see these beloved features come online, and see never-before-seen features get implemented as I code them up - I know you've been wondering what the hell I was gonna do with the fountain that isn't mentioned anywhere in any of my code, but which you guys have established as a persistent headcanon.

I'm very excited about the new Outpost system - it gives me a lot of creative freedom to do things that I couldn't do with the current system, and that means more interesting things for you lot!

The Dimensional Phaser is now available in the Hunter's Lodge. Quantities are not limited.

Have fun!
New Monthly Memento, update on Outposts, lesbian smut
Admin CavemanJoe2016-01-03 04:46:51
Hey, folks! The Monthly Memento for this January is the same as it was for last January, since last January's went down so well (and since I've been too busy with the new outposts system to think of something new). It's a shiny new calendar! Once a week, it gives you a new gameday. If you've already got the one from last year, you can totally get this one too and have two free gamedays per week.

The Outposts system is coming along nicely - I'm hoping to have a semi-playable beta test version of NewHome for our supporting players pretty soon (hopefully this month), so stay tuned for updates on that.

Spurred on by the enthusiastic ramblings of my good IRL friend Phoenix Baker (TOTALLY NOT A REAL NAME), I am once again doing a favour by linking to this thoroughly NSFW Kindle ebook. Why? Quote Phoenix: "It's free right now! People waited for like two years for a sequel and I finally got off my ass and wrote three." To which I replied "Three. You wrote three sequels." To which Phoenix replied "Yes, and they get progressively more ridiculous as they go on." To which I replied "And you want me to send my Islanders to it. Again." To which Phoenix replied "Yes please." To which I shrugged and said "Okay. Sure."

So, um, if you've got a Kindle, you can totally download Phoenix Baker's "Mittens: a story about two women falling in love and doing really weird things to each other" for free. Phoenix hopes that you'll like it well enough that you'll pay cold hard cash money for the sequels. Personally I thought it was pretty damn adorable for a porno book. It's also available on SmashWords, so you can read it on your phone or whatever if you're like me and despise Amazon's shitty app. (seriously, once you've tried Moon+ Reader Amazon's ebook reader app just looks like friggin' amateur hour)

(srsly I've been reading ebooks on my phone since this was my phone and this was its operating system and you had to use a little stick to poke the screen - and even back in those days the ebook reader apps were better than Amazon's. I have like a two thousand word rant about how shit Amazon's phone ereader app is but I won't paste it here 'cause that'd be one step away from get-off-my-lawn territory)

Have fun!

~CMJ

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