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The new region discussed last time was completed and tested. Since then I have done another layer of testing from game start through to chapter 2, fixing bugs, adding content and cutscenes, and improving the gameplay. A lot of this is art and sound studio work, but there are still things that pop up which need coding or adjustments, such as smoother handling of followers, saving and loading with different conditions, and different actors, tweaks to AI, combat, and dialog.
One of these items was engaging entry points as a group:
I don’t recall playing a game where followers could smoothly get in or out of an elevator with me, and it not just be a cutscene. I made a way to this in realtime, and it feels better. When a game is overly-reliant on cutscenes, I start to wonder if they actually wanted to make a movie instead of a game, or perhaps just didn’t want to write the necessary code.
At any rate, I want Exalted Seracthon to feel as immersive as possible at release, and that requires some extra work to get it as close as I can. There is only so much one person can do, but it is sometimes the details that matter.