Hey guys, this is quite the long one so get comfortable. I was thinking of ways adventuring could be implemented in the future in a way that fits stonehearth
Preparing for adventure
Going on an adventure shouldn’t be something where you can just marqee select some hearthlings and right click somewhere on the overworld. One part of adventuring includes planning and preparation.
First, make a party like you can currently. Selecting the party will give a “Go on adventure!” button. This brings you to a planning screen where you add supplies, backpacks, equipment, money and anything else that might be in the game necessary for adventuring. This is where you decide what to give from your town to your party to start them off on the trip.
The next screen is to plan a route. This can take several forms depending on your knowledge of the overworld. Early adventures may be about exploration as much as finding loot. You can simply pick a direction that the party will follow in a straight line until called back, or you could set up a series of waypoints, or you could specifically target a dungeon that you have learned the location of, either through previous exploration or outside rumor. When everything is ready, click go and the party will set off the next morning.
Controlling the adventure
With the party gone, you can now return to normal stonehearth activities. The party status will appear as a widget somewhere on the edge of the screen, where you can click on it to zoom to its location. Whenever something happens to the party and its members, say a member gets sick or they run into a group of gobbos, you’ll get a notification next to the widget with a short description of what’s happening.
While the party is adventuring, you have a few special controls. You can recall the party, causing them to start making the trek back to town. You can force camp, effectively pausing the party indefinitely. This allows you replan their route or take stock of the current surroundings. While camped, party members can recharge renewable resources like health etc. On the flip side you can also force march, where the party won’t stop until they collapse.
some notifications have extra controls tied to them. If the party finds a dungeon, you can choose to either “explore” or “carry on.” if the party is attacked, the party will fight by default, but you can choose to “flee.” by clicking on notifications you are presented with these options, much like you would in a old text based adventure game or a game like FTL.
Automating the adventure
The idea is to make the adventure semi autonomous, in keeping with the rest of the style of stonehearth. The party will follow the route and deal with situations mostly on their own, just like farming or building or any other job. The player can control the party to some degree, and even micromanage in combat situations should they feel the need, but most of the time it should be something the player can check in on every once in a while to see how the party is doing. balancing the number of encounters is quite key. You don’t want to take too much of the player’s attention and have them be constantly worrying about losing the party or even just a single member.
At night the party will set up camp. This is where they’ll use some supplies and recharge renewable resources by sleeping, eating, applying medicine or meditating. as said previously you can force camp, but the party will need to camp eventually.
When following the route, the party may deviate if there is a nearby town. town interaction with other towns is a whole other topic, but in short this is where the money from the planning phase comes in. You can also set towns you have prior knowledge of to be places to visit along the route.
Here you can buy and sell items, and stay at an inn. At most the party will stay at the town for one or two days, and will be on the move again soon. The could even be quests associated with the town, but again that’s a topic for a different day.
Encounters are situational. The player will have a window of time to make a decision via the notification, but eventually the party will move on if it is ignored. Some encounters can’t be ignored, like being ambushed, in which case the party will fight.
Overall the adventuring system is meant to be like any other job in stonehearth. There is room for control on the player’s behalf, but for the most part it is automated.The purpose of adventuring is to obtain rare items for the town and experience for the party members, as well as provide an alternate side to stonehearth for the player to engage in. It also gives a way to interact with the overworld, and a reason to engage with it outside of your own town. Thanks for reading.
TL;DR: adventures should be like other jobs in stonehearth: mostly automated but with room for control. The route should be planned out and encounters can be dealt with in a way similar to FTL.