I’ve added food (and hunger) to the game. Food will serve two purposes: primarily it’s as a simple upkeep mechanic. Slaves require food to survive and food costs money. The second purpose is as a morale booster.
For every slave you acquire you have another mouth to feed. But you don’t buy or manage a food stock. Instead, your characters will passively consume some amount of units of food every turn and at the end of every week you pay for the total food consumed.
You can set how much food is allocated to each of your characters. You can starve a slave to save money, however they’ll be less happy and weaker as a result. You can also reward slaves by giving them extra food, which will have similar but positive effects.
Naturally, the owner/player character requires more food than the common slave to be content.
At the end of the day this is a fairly inconspicuous addition. The player is not required to manage their food consumption if they don’t want to, as long as they can earn enough to pay for the weekly food expenses.
In House Dominae, any characters can attempt to perform any act, except they will fail 100% of the time unless they have the necessary experience points relevant to that act. I want it to be an open system but it also meant that it’s hard to discern what your slaves are capable of, without knowing the numbers.
To alleviate that issue I added something that I call ‘techniques’.
The basic system remains the same, except now when a slave gains a sufficient amount of experience in a certain discipline, that gets reflected by them learning a new technique, clearly shown in the character window.
Customers will only ask for activities if one of your slaves possess the technique relevant to that activity. The net effect is that advanced activities won’t be introduced until you have someone capable of performing them.
A secondary benefit of techniques is that you get a better sense of a character’s growth and it’s easier to compare them.
Almost as a direct consequence of adding techniques, I felt the game could use more alternative ways to gain experience.. so I added books! and a book store!
You can buy books and give them to a character. They can then read that book up to three times and gain experience on the subject of that book. Once a character is finished reading a book it stays in your inventory and you can give it to someone else to read.
There are advanced books and rare books too, so it’s a good idea to check the book store regularly to see what’s for sale that day.
I’ve been working on rooms and room upgrades across a number of weekends. I’ll be honest, this has not been the most fun task for me, but a necessity since upgrading your brothel is an important progression mechanic in the game.
As the owner of the brothel, one of your jobs is to assign a purpose to each room, and to maintain and upgrade them. You can only house as many slaves as you have beds so if you want to grow your business you will inevitably move to larger and more spacious buildings.
Admittedly, a lot of the rooms will be bedrooms, but I intend to have a number of other useful rooms available. One example is the bath, where characters can go to cleanse and reduce some stress. Another is an isolation room where you can confine slaves either as punishment or to slowly eat away at their psyche.
But all of this required a decent amount of foundational work. Work that is now mostly complete. Rooms can now be dressed up with furniture and props based on the room type and level. The game is now also smart enough to where it can utilize the same prop placements regardless of a room’s orientation or dimensions, which I hope will save me a lot of time putting them together.
Renting buildings This weekend I put some work into the game’s building mechanic.
You’ll start the game in a building just big enough to house you and your one starter slave. To progress and expand you’re going to have to move your brothel to successively larger buildings. Every building has its own room layout, which is an important consideration because the size of a room determines what type of room it can be.
You can also choose which town district your brothel is situated. The location of your brothel will heavily influence the kinds of customers you can receive.
Naturally, all of these considerations will affect the rent so choose wisely.
Hermaphrodites I also made a small but critical change to the shemale gender. They can now have both male and female genitalia. (They used to only have male bits.) I really liked the idea of a well-defined third gender and how it created a nice symmetry with the other two genders. At the same time this is stuff people really care about and in the end, the less restrictions on character creation the better.
Shemale characters with both a penis and vagina is now referred to as “hermaphrodites” but are still considered to be members of the same gender as their vagina-less sisters. They’re a little OP, because they they get the best of both worlds, but so be it.
I reworked how you earn influence points in House Dominae. Influence is an important resource that you spend on things that money can’t buy. It’s like a social currency and you need it’s to gain access to the in-game bank, as an example.
Previously you would passively earn influence points based on your current reputation score. As long as your reputation was high, you’d gain some influence every day.
In testing I discovered that this mechanic just doesn’t work. You’d start the game earning no influence at all and once you’d get a little bit of reputation you were swimming in it. I tried balancing the numerical values but it became apparent the system was fundamentally flawed.
The new system will assign influence points to individual customers. To claim that influence you must satisfy their request. You can imagine these customers being influential people that will spread word about you even after visiting your brothel. The likelihood of a customer being influential depends on their social class.
I really like this way of doing it because it directly ties into the rest of the gameplay. When an influential person shows up in the customer queue I really want to make sure that I assign them to a slave that has the greatest chance of satisfying their request.
I kinda got carried away with the item system and added piercings too. Now there’s a beauty salon the player can visit to add piercings to slaves (as well as the PC).
They’re mostly cosmetic, in the roleplaying sense, but I took a page from Corruption of Champions’ book and you can get special gemmed piercings that grants a permanent buff to the character, depending on the gem and location of the piercing.
I haven’t posted an update in a while so let’s fix that.
An earlier question spurred me to work on the building generator and to implement some different room types. I made a bathroom. For bathing! In fact, the exercise of implementing a new room type forced me to replace a bunch of old placeholder code with a more proper implementation.
I added an early, but functional, random event system. These events can trigger – randomly – when a specified condition is true for any slave. I’ve experimented with this before but I was missing the part where a player decision could affect the state of a slave.
As a proof of concept I made a random event that, if a slave’s health got too low, they could get sick (or not). I then made a second event that would randomly make a sick slave healthy again, as if they had recovered with time. I thought it was kind of an interesting concept and I’d like to explore it more.
I still have to write up a bunch of (hopefully interesting) events, but at least the technical details has been laid out.
This is a really minor thing, but I flipped “happiness” around and called it “stress” instead, and immediately a lot of my math and simulations started making more sense. For instance it doesn’t make a lot of sense that taking a bath makes you happy, but it does make sense that it relieves stress; and anything that could be considered “unhappiness” translates very well to being “stressful”. It also removed some ambiguity with “Morale”. See? Game design!
Another minor thing. You can now place one of your characters in the entrance to greet arriving customers. A social skill check is rolled and if it succeeds a bonus is added to all working slaves’ own social skill checks. This means a highly social character can assist socially inept slaves.
It’s not very significant but it’s something a player character can do to contribute to the business of whoring without actually whoring themselves out like a lowly slave.
Looking down on my notepad I’ve written “Multi-event ?”, which is to say I’m considering adding two new activity types: single customer on multiple slaves and multiple customers on a single slave. This will open up the possibility for a wider range of customer requests, like exhibition acts and group sex.
This is an interface/assignment problem more than anything but I think it could work.