***This roadmap has since been replaced by the more recent, up-to-date 2019 – 2020 ROADMAP here.***
HEY EVERYONE DID YOU MISS US? We’ve borbled about in post-launch for a bit, and are now back on a schedule. This means you can expect to see fortnightly blog posts from us again, and can follow development along with our roadmap below. Woo-hoo!
Alexis posted a rough idea of Cultist’s future a few weeks ago, and we’ve now confirmed enough things to put dates to delivery. We’ve had to make space in the schedule for two Big Name Freelance Gigs of Alexis’s That I Am Apparently Not Allowed To Talk About Yet, but I reckon you’ll be impressed and maybe even interested in what these Things are, when we finally reveal ’em.
Without further ado, here’s what’s coming up over the next eight-ish months for Cultist Simulator. I’ll extend this roadmap as time goes on, so don’t worry, Time continues to pass after March 2019.
Lovecraft’s birthday, for which we ran a #Lovecraftday giveaway, released Steam trading cards, and ran a Daily Deal on Steam and Humble! Also, our new monthly design stream (Thurs 16th)! Alexis and Lottie talk Cultist design, answer questions, and host special guest Nikhil Murthy (The Quiet Sleep), one of Weather Factory’s mentees. Ongoing work for Teresa’s Build.
Dancer DLC content, new icons from Clockwork Cuckoo, new Legacy/Aspect icons, continued UI improvements and bug fixing, Coven Club grand opening, monthly newsletter out, ongoing work on Teresa’s Build, and unfortunately I still can’t talk about one of those Big Announcements for legal/marketing/it goes beyond just Weather Factory reasons, but stay tuned. Additionally, we revamped the roadmap – changes in pink.
Final work on Teresa’s Build/Dancer DLC: a sprint of closing/polish to keep Teresa from being Neville.
October #1: UNDINE (Teresa’s Build Release! For realsies!)Complete! Update here.
Teresa’s Build! This will include a bunch of free updates (wounded/missing Followers, rebellious Followers, romanceable Followers, new Talk interactions, improved Detective Legacy) and one paid bit of DLC (Dancer Legacy). Perpetual Edition owners, of course, get this ALL for free! Also, our monthly design stream (Thurs 18th).
Our slightly late monthly design stream (Thurs 22nd), now that we have internet again! Also, work starts on the Apostle victories, final localisation tech work, ongoing work on Christopher’s Build, and prep for our Christmas seasonal, OPALIA.
Final prep for Christopher’s Build. More importantly, this is the sprint we get Secret Kittens and surprise Alexis’s kid with them and make Lottie the happiest person in the world because cats. Updated research mechanics too although come on did you not read about the cats. Also, 2019, I SUPPOSE
January #2: BELLE DAME (Christopher’s Build release!)Complete! Update here.
Christopher’s Build releases! This one’s made of entirely free updates (three Tier 2 Apostle Legacies, incorporating Long hunting/defence + some HQ updates + new Expeditions).Also, our monthly design stream (Thurs 17th).
Ongoing work on Franklin’s Build, and our monthly design stream (Thurs 21st).
March #1: EDWIN DROOD Complete! Update here. Alexis and Lottie head to Helsinki to help judge this year’s IMGA awards. Ongoing Franklin’s Build work, A Nice Announcement for Cultist [REVEALED: MOBILE PORT], A Nice Announcement for Weather Factory [REVEALED: WE HIRED CLAIRE, AND ARE HIRING FOR 3 MORE ROLES], and delayed but improved research mechanics.
March #3: GLYDE Complete! Update here. Cultist Simulator mobile launch! Ongoing Franklin’s Build work, and the start of London Games Fest.
April #1: HESSELIUS Complete! Update here. Ongoing Franklin’s Build work: the Priest DLC completed. London Games Fest continues, and Alexis and Lottie also head to EGX Rezzed to be on a variety of panels. Finally, our monthly design stream (which we didn’t do in the end because we were too busy SORRY THIS WILL HAPPEN FROM MAY AS NORMAL).
April #2: ISABELLA Complete! Update here. Ongoing Franklin’s Build work: the Ghoul DLC completed. Alexis and Lottie fly out to Latvia for the Latvian Game Dev Conference, run by one of Weather Factory’s mentees – Vladimir Slav!
May #1: JEKYLL Complete! Update here. Final polish, bug fixing and prep on Franklin’s Build, LudoNarraCon. Also, our monthly design stream (Thurs 16th).
May #2: KNOWL Complete! Update here. Cultist Simulator’s ✨🎈 one year anniversary uwu 🎈✨! Also, Franklin’s Build release (which involved the Priest + Ghoul DLCs, as well as our Anthology Edition)! And we announced our next game: BOOK OF HOURS! Oh my giddy aunt.
June #1: LIGEIA Our habitual ‘spare sprint for post-launch bug fixing and support’.
More info on the future of Weather Factory soon! There’ll start being other projects in this roadmap soon. Exciting, eh?
This sprint’s title comes from my favourite literary lady, Gwendolen Harleth in George Eliot’s Daniel Deronda. That’s a lot of names to open this blog with, but we did a lot of things, sooooo…
The big aim for this sprint was to get us ready for the EXPLORER’S BUILD, releasing on Monday! For which, I am delighted to say, we NOW ARE READY! Full patch notes and a lot of flag waving will occur on the day, so I’ll gloss over the details for now. Suffice to say, you’ll find expeditions, a smorgasbord of locations to explore, some unimpressed guardians of said locations, new tomes, and… what was it again? Oh yeah. THE HOUSE.
AK’s spent the majority of this sprint writing and designing the new content in the Explorer’s Build, so more on that tomorrow. The headline update here is really that functional Mansus (???), into which you can Dream yourself if you have lots of bravery and little sense. Let it be noted that due to half of Weather Factory’s intense arachnophobia, anyone entering the House through the Spider Door will be sent straight to the cupboard.
We put a bunch of new art in the game this sprint from Clockwork Cuckoo, Sarah and myself. We updated our cultist icons, added placeholder and some unique location icons ready for the Explorer’s Build, new scrolls and tomes, some additional ingredients, and revamped the way we depict foreign language and translated books. We also f ~ i ~ n ~ a ~ l ~ l ~ y revamped our three legacy icons, so look out for new Aspirant, BYT and Physician icons, too.
(Because this is my blog and I can, I also want to give a special shout-out to the new Guardian aspect icon. He is so tuff but also so smol. ♥)
Earlier this week we posted some updated visuals from AK’s in-fiction text: Hoare’s Hints to Travellers in Italy, fragments from the notebooks of ‘Parsival’, and Teresa’s letter to her beloved, from the remote port of Noon. Take a look here! Sarah, meanwhile, finished off two new Hours cards for us: the ELEGIAST and the HORNED-AXE. AK is particularly partial to the ELEGIAST; I am particularly moved by the AXE. Believers, CHOOSE YOUR SIDE!
This sprint we’ve also been prepping for a number of talks in the near future. BECAUSE MAKING A GAME WAS NOT HARD ENOUGH. We’re demoing at EGX Rezzed next weekend (Friday – Sunday, at the Tentacle Collective! Look out for gigantic waving green things), and AK’s giving a talk on the Sunday at 1PM about Apocalypse and Yearning. The weekend after that, we’re both off to Dubrovnik to speak at Reboot Develop. And then, at last, we have a ‘weekend’.
The main point of this obviously is that I got to spend some money on stickers. So come find us at Rezzed to Choose Ur Cult, be up for a chance to win an Orchid Transfiguration USB with a Perpetual Edition Steam key on it (another one, if you’re a Disciple-level backer or higher), eat colour-coded bon-bons, and marvel at our prestigious Cultist Simulator/Weather Factory branded hoodies, designed by someone with little understanding of colour, e.g. me.
Something I’m really excited about that we did this sprint – apart from, y’know, getting ourselves ready for our final large content drop, which is a feat for BABIES – is that we finished our launch trailer! Working with the delightful Vanessa Williams who made our original ‘Bring the Dawn’ announce trailer, we’ve come up with 1:10s of timer-orientated mystery, intrigue and a great drum section at 40s in. The trailer should be published places from Wednesday onwards, so look out for it then. Coax and/or threaten your acquaintances to watch it for an improved % chance not to spawn into the Mansus on the Ascent of Knives.
I leave you with news that I’ve been picked as one of Code First: Girl’s ‘Ones to Watch’ (?), and that Sonja will be receiving a surprise Weather Factory hoodie of her own when they arrive, so you may expect exuberant eight-year-old photos next sprint blog. This is the sort of #premium #content you’re all here for, right?
(Cultist Simulator won ‘Best Game Design’ in the Emotional Games Awards 2018, and apparently we get a bust and everything. I have to order it from France, where the awards were held, because obviously we didn’t go because obviously it was totally nuts to think we’d win when we were up against the likes of Hellblade, INSIDE and Pyre, but apparently AK’s, like, really good now and stuff, so there you are. It’s AK’s first design award, and I am extremely proud of him.)
I pushed our GOG store page live, as well as updating Steam with new screenshots and graphics. I’ve also commissioned sound effects from the excellent SFX studio Soundcuts – I’ve worked with them before on Zubmariner and Sunless Skies – and started our video marquise Vanessa off on our Super Secret Launch Trailer, Whose Date You Definitely Don’t Yet Know. But I’m just saying: tune in to the Kickstarter live stream on Thursday 31st May for reasons that are in no way related.
I also designed a number of new aspects which should make recipes and combinations clearer. It’s worth taking a moment to specify the difference between principles and aspects, as they’re something I’ve seen elided in our Discord and Steam forums a bit.
Principles are our nine governing powers in the narrative: Grail, Heart, Forge, Lantern, Edge, Knock, Winter, Moth, Secret Histories.
Aspects are the small, runic-looking icons in the bottom of verb and inspection windows, which tell you about the hidden essence of a thing. They are the scraps of knowledge beneath the skin of the world. Sometimes these actually show principles; sometimes they show things like ‘Desire’ or ‘Scholar: Aramaic’.
Here’re some newbies that went in this sprint…
AK’s been focused on locations and expeditions, which are specific to the Explorer’s Build, and one of our last remaining bits of Big Content yet to go into the game. He talked a bit about them here, earlier in the week. No more shall that Explore verb remain chained to Strathcoyne’s comburent library! Soon, you shall MARVEL at the Cave of Candles, flickering and sly; TIPTOE through the ruins of the Chateau Raveline; and BRAVE St Trento of the Deep Door, like the beastied mere of Beowulf:
…se mere standeð
…the mere stands;
ofer þaém hongiað hrímge bearwas
over it hang frost-covered groves,
wudu wyrtum fæst wæter oferhelmað
tree held fast by its roots overshadows the water;
þaér mæg nihta gehwaém níðwundor séon
there one may every night a horrible marvel see:
fýr on flóde
fire on the water;
Here’s some actual text from the game, which is I guess what you are even here for, not worm-eaten Anglo-Saxon poetry. This is your introduction to Fort Geryk, a ramshackle fortress in the remote Evening Isles:
“Three hundred years ago, a rapacious empire claimed an island ripe with tourmalines. Neither the empire nor the island are mentioned in any reputable history. But the governor’s fortress remains. Perhaps his treasures remain. For that matter, perhaps he does, too.”
AK’s also been working with Sarah on a number of Hours cards: the Beach-Crow, the Lionsmith; the Velvet; the Malachite. Most of these are still in progress, but we have confirmed our final Velvet, whom I present to you in smol form below!
Finally, I leave you with news that IRL I turned an Acquaintance into a Follower, triumphing over the powers of Winter. From this, my ill-fated attempt to keep animals alive during the Greenwich Snows…
to the one, the only…
♥ ~ B I R B S Y ~ ♥
(Artist’s impression. He’s a goddamn birb so photography is HARD.)
He comes to visit my office quite a lot and together we shall start a cult called the Winged Worm and make it really hard for you to set that slider in Cultist Simulator‘s options menu. Thank you and goodnight.
Ladies and gents, Hinter and Percussigants, Templars Unceasing and Wildwood peers: the Adept’s Build is HERE! This is a big milestone for Cultist Simulator, as it brings us to around the 60% Of The Game Is Basically Done mark (a very good place to be).
We gave some details of what’s in the Adept’s Build in our last sprint update, but the short version is: it’s a biggie. New Followers; new Cults; new Rites; new Tools, Ingredients and Influences; all of which come with a porphyry font-load of lore (What violence was done to the Thunderskin? Which five agreed the doctrine of Light? How was the Velvet awoken? Who is the last God-from-Stone?). I actually work on this game and am excited by this build, so I’m crossing my quietly supernumerary fingers that you will be, too.
The Adept’s Build will be live on itch.io and Steam by the end of the day. Anybody who’s yet to purchase Cultist Simulator, your time is running out! We only have…
…before Perpetual Edition is removed from sale, and you have to wait until launch to get your hands on it. I’m just going to put this here. 😀
As always, please send any feedback or bug reports to firstname.lastname@example.org. We aren’t able to glean these from forum posts or Kickstarter comments, so please send one but per email to make sure we know about issues and can fix ’em!
We recommend using our Steam forums for questions / general discussions, or joining our most active Discord (invite link here) for a frighteningly in-depth analysis of the game, its mythos and beyond.
Patch notes below.
Please note that THIS IS A WORK IN PROGRESS AND BALANCE MAY BE VERY PECULIAR. The Adept’s Build is still just a development build, although a fun one.
Followers can be promoted further than before, and to unique Aspect-based specialisms;
The Society of St Hydra reveres all Aspects and none;
Influences, ingredients and tools are now in-game, allowing you to create all 10 possible Rites, and giving you a mountain of lore to mine at the foot of the Wood;
Summon a dozen different eldritch creatures to defeat Investigators and destroy Evidence; [although until the Explorer’s Build drops next month, you may find it difficult to gather everything you need.]
Dozens of new lore fragments implemented. If you find the right ones, research can take you all the way;
Appetites/end game magic are implemented, allowing you to follow the paths of Power, Sensation or Enlightenment (some at unspeakable cost);
You can now use Talk to send Followers to snatch strangers from the street, work for hire, burglarise the rich, and other dastardly deeds;
New music in-game, including end-game music, impending doom music and additional background music;
New art in-game, including unique art for all Lore fragments, Lore articles, ascensions, cults, evidence, prisoners, influences, ingredients, Rites, language scholarship, tools and creatures;
New NPCs: introducing Auclair, Cat, Elridge, Laidlaw, Porter, Renira, Saliba, Slee, Sylvia, Valciane, Violet, Ysabet, DCI Hat and Mr Policeman;
Revamped title screen;
Shinies! (particle effects, soft lighting on verbs and smoky animation when tokens disappear now in);
Player options are now in-game, including music/sfx volume sliders, windows duration settings, and an all-important bird/worm distinction; [NB: not currently saved between sessions]
Updated inspection windows UI;
All hateful stack overflow errors have been fixed! This means: no save games should load into blank tabletops/incorrect characters/sparse cards anymore; Investigations should not wink out of existence or crash the game; Erudition/Glimmering will not bork games; Verb windows should no longer fail, leaving cards in mid-air; no more ‘Operation invalid’ error messages; and commissions should no longer soft-lock the game;
Cards should no longer disappear from results;
Cards will no longer be snatched from your hands by greedy slots;
Unstackable cards (Erudition, etc) are no longer stacked automatically by the ‘collect all’ button;
Issue with Aspects not displaying on inspection windows now fixed;
Strathcoyne’s Residence no longer borks exploration;
Inspectors no longer cause null ref exceptions;
When you’ve exhausted Morland’s Shop, you know about it;
Cards/tokens are placed more intelligently on the board, so no more cards being generated on top of one another, etc;
No longer possible to insert stacks of cards into Verb slots;
Funds and Reason cards cards will no longer occasionally duplicate themselves (sorry);
Minor content typos now fixed.
What’s next? The Explorer’s Build will land at the end of March, the Harbinger’s Build in April, and we’re still on course for a release at end May. More here…