I’ve just finished the side-plot content (all 75 000 words of it) for Lords of Infinity, which means I’ve only got a few more things to tidy up (balance, reference materials, some new text additions based on player feedback) before I’m ready to submit the whole thing to the publisher. Hopefully, all of that shouldn’t take more than another two or three months.
Tag Archives: Guns of Infinity
Today I’d like to talk a bit about this side content I’ve been working on. It’s gotten to well over 50 000 words all by itself, and I’m probably going to need at least another month to finish it up, so I feel like you’re all at least a little entitled to a bit of an explanation.
First of all, what it is: the side content for Lords of Infinity consists of a handful of small plots with tangential, but potentially important ramifications for the main story. Think of them like sidequests in an RPG, or a breather episode in a TV show. These side-plots are available to the player based on their choices. The Aetoria side-content, for example, is determined by the club they join when they move to the capital. Each of these side-stories explores an aspect of life as a member of the Tierran aristocracy which the main story doesn’t really have space for. They can bring additional benefits to the player later on – as well as potential complications.
I already suspect that a few of you already have a question: why bother? Why should I put time and effort into this stuff if it’s not moving the main plot along? Well, there’s a number of reasons for that:
First of all, it fleshes out the world, both by showing how the changing conditions of the world are affecting places and people the player wouldn’t otherwise see, and by allowing the player to experience some of more of the social world that surrounds the main character, both in spheres which are intended for the aristocratic classes, and those which aren’t. Each of the side-plots introduces the player to new characters, new places, and new social phenomena which make up the parts of a living, breathing, setting.
Secondly, it offers additional choices and consequences, which allow the player to affect the story in new and interesting ways. Likewise, some of the decisions which the player makes in the side content might prove to have helpful (or harmful) consequences in the main story. As a result, the world feels more connected and reactive, more real. The player gets more of a feeling that this is a world their main character actually inhabits, where even how they spend their spare time is a matter of consequence.
Thirdly, it offers more impact to certain choices which I consider a bit lacking in reactivity. While there’s already a lot of different content based around each of the five clubs in Aetoria, this new side content not only adds more, but also helps reinforce the fact that the club you join isn’t just a throw-away choice, but something which can outright determine the people you know and the things you can do.
Last of all, some of it is just fun to write, and lets players get up to all kinds of shenanigans which their characters could only get away with through the impunity that comes with high birth in a deeply unequal society.
Hopefully, when Lords of Infinity comes out in a few months, you’ll all consider it as worth the effort as I have.
I’m now working on Chapter 5B of Lords of Infinity, and a rough estimate puts me at maybe 30-40% done at the moment. This one should be a shorter chapter than the last, though I don’t know by how much. After taking a look at what I’ve got planned, I’ve decided to divide Chapter 5 into three versions, which means I won’t be able to get to Chapter 6 until the beginning of May, if things go well.
This month’s installments of A Soldier’s Guide to the Infinite Sea and An Adventurer’s Guide to the Fledgling Realms are now up, so go ahead and check those out. I’ll also be starting a third Patreon column, entitled A Creator’s Guide to Writing and Worldbuilding starting next month, so look forward to that as well.
I’m almost done Chapter 5A of Lords of Infinity. As I mentioned last month, this is likely to be another big one. I’m already at 65k words, and there’s still a bit more to go. Hopefully it’ll be done at the end of the month, which will give me March to work on Chapter 5B, which should be a bit shorter.
As of this update, all three versions of Chapter 3 of Lords of Infinity are now finished, which means I’ve started working on the two versions of Chapter 4.
Both iterations of Chapter 4 are relatively large. Although I’m certainly going to try to get Chapter 4A done by this time next month, it may take somewhat longer than that.
As of this update, the second version of Chapter 3 of Lords of Infinity is now complete, which means I’m devoting my efforts to finishing the final version.
This third branch (Chapter 3C) is perhaps the most interesting of the three, at least, from a design standpoint. It’s going to be the rarest, since accessing it relies on the player making a series of very specific decisions in Guns of Infinity, and then importing that file over. My optimistic estimate is that maybe 5-10% of players will end up seeing it, or even knowing of its existence at all, unless they find out through forum posts or word of mouth (or this blog, for that matter).
However, this does not mean that this chapter is going to be any shorter or less fully featured than 3A or 3B. Nor does it mean that someone coming into the series fresh won’t be able to have a good time with the two chapters they will have access to (though the existence of the third version offers another incentive for newcomers to buy the whole series). It does mean that I’ll be able to essentially create what is going be a more or less “secret” storyline, full of unique content which will not only be a full chapter, but serve as a goal in itself, just like certain chapters of Guns of Infinity were.
I just thought you’d all like to know that I have finished writing and have started bugtesting the first version of Chapter 3 of Lords of Infinity. There’ll be three separate versions, one for the Aetoria branch and two for the estate. At this rate, I should be able to finish all three by the middle of September.
My short-term goal is to get to a certain point of Chapter 6 by the end of the year. That would put me on track to be text-complete by the late summer or early fall of 2020, with a release at the end of the year.
Needless to say, Lords of Infinity is going to be a huge project, likely the size of Sabres and Guns put together, if not more. It’s arguably the fulcrum of the whole planned five-part series, which means the success of the whole may depend on how well it holds up.
In other news, July’s installments of A Soldier’s Guide to the Infinite Sea and An Adventurer’s Guide to the Fledgling Realms are now up. As usual, these worldbuilding columns were funded by my supporters on Patreon. If you’d like to get early access, or have a say in what I write about next (or contribute to my living expenses as I work on Lords of Infinity), then I’d certainly encourage you to pitch in a few dollars a month, if possible.
In the meantime, I am still busy working on (one of the iterations of) Chapter 2 of Lords of Infinity.
I’d just like to let everyone know that I am now well into working on Lords of Infinity, so these updates are going to get a lot shorter.
I was going to write about the political factions within the Tierran Cortes for this month’s blog post, but as it turns out, my supporters on Patreon voted for an article on the exact same topic.
As a result, you can find that article as the latest installment of A Soldier’s Guide to the Infinite Sea, which is now up alongside this month’s entry in An Adventurer’s Guide to the Fledgling Realms.