Devlog #17 | Delivering News (Game Design Post)

This time we would like to introduce a brand new game mechanic to you that you will see quite a lot in Vagrus: the acquiring and delivering of news across vast tracts of wasteland. Carrying news between settlements not only makes sense from a gameplay perspective but has its foundations in-world, too, that is, comitati are known to have a vital role in distributing news and taking messages all over the continent of Xeryn.

Acquiring News
News are tied to settlements: each settlement, however small, has its own News entry. You will acquire the entry for the given settlement when you enter the mansio in it. Alternatively, if you already have the entry in your Journal, it is reset to the freshest state when you enter the mansio. Sometimes you can also find News entries through Events as well - these often give you entries from faraway places.

Delivering News
You can deliver news by turning them in at the mansio in settlements. Doing so will grant you coins depending on the number of entries, their freshness, and your current distance from their source. Note that News entries are not lost when you turn them in but you can not turn them in at that settlement again for a while. Entries can only disappear from your Journal when they lose all their freshness (but this can be reset by acquiring that same entry again).

The Value of News
Each News entry is slowly becoming less fresh and thus its value is constantly degrading. This is balanced by the fact that the farther the source of the entry to the turn-in point, the greater its value. Single entries are worth very little but turning in several in as many places as you can, you will gain a constant and fairly reliable side income. Yet you will not be able to sustain a caravan only by taking news between settlements.

How to Use News
All the above results in a system that encourages planning journeys ahead and including as many settlements as possible along the way as well as getting to them as fast as possible. This means more News entries plus more deliveries and thus more income. Yet the mechanic is non-intrusive and works mostly automatically, rewarding players who plan ahead.

This post is dedicated to Chauncey St. John, our Sponsor tier Patron. Thanks for your support, Chance!

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