Good news, everyone! Today the Heroines celebrate their first birthday!
The game Heroines of Swords & Spells was released on Steam exactly one year ago, on March 17, 2020. Since then, over 5000 copies of the game have been sold. Certainly not bad for a project made in RPG Maker, don’t you think?
I give my thanks to everyone who agreed to spend their time and money on my modest yet epic and humorous game. In this year, the project has grown a relatively small but loyal fanbase. People are waiting for a sequel, and that motivates me to continue working on the project.
I had planned to release a large-scale DLC about four evil goblettes — Diana and her friends’ rivals. Alas, I did not have enough time. The deadline had to be pushed back. The translation is not finished, the art is not ready yet, the project's page on Steam also leaves a great deal to be desired. The worst thing is that it took a lot of time to port the game to Android devices, yet I am still highly dissatisfied with the quality of the port.
It became impossible to release the DLC exactly on the game’s release anniversary due to these drawbacks. So, I decided to act like a real politician before an important election — that is, to start promising how good everything will be for everyone... later. Just hold on for a little longer, scout’s honor. And if the anti-heroic DLC will not be released at the end of March then it certainly will be by mid-April. Please note me not specifying the year.
Apart from the DLC there are some important core game updates waiting to be implemented. A major 1.5 patch is coming out soon where our heroines will show themselves at their best. Literally!
Starting with version 1.5 the girls will get big(ger) dialog portraits done by our one and only artist, Tr0yka. However, if some of you prefer the old look, you’ll easily find the option to turn this new feature off in the game settings. Anything for my dearest players. Alas, the simple NPCs’ portraits will remain unchanged.
Some locations, mostly streets, will be redrawn too. Here is how, for example, Strizhinsk will be transformed under the archconsul’s reign.
Prior to v. 1.5:
After v. 1.5
Other changes will be more clandestine, but trust me, many small things have been tinkered with. Old save files should work normally even after the changes.
In addition to the graphics the gameplay balance will be slightly tuned as well. Anastasia’s Meat shield skill effect will now be removed if one of the following debuffs are applied: Stun, Charm, Confusion etc. That is, Anastasia won’t be able to tank in any situation when the player can’t control her.
The 1.5 version also introduces a new legendary achievement to the main campaign and a couple of new pictures for the cutscenes.
But the main course of the upcoming changes is of course the anti-heroines scenario. I am sick at heart to tell you the grave news but the DLC won’t be free.
The story of four goblin girls is designed for 7+ hours of gameplay. That’s how long it took for the testers to finish the DLC.
The players will lead four relatively new characters down the crooked path of "anti-heroism".
The leader and troublemaker of our anti-heroic party, and the instigator that egged on the other goblettes to join her searching for adventure, or rather, misadventure. Among the greenskins Groonya stands out for her tall stature (almost that of an average human) and strong fists. She says that she is the strongest in the tribe after the chief, but no one believes her, of course. Never before has a woman been able to compete with the best male warriors. However, for some reason none of the aforementioned best warriors are too eager to go head-to-head with her. In addition to her great strength, Groonya's mouth is full of needle-sharp teeth — a mutation not uncommon among goblins. With her superb appetite Grunya can't help but try and take a bite out of her prey.
Groonya’s best friend who does the thinking for both of them. A cunning and green gob-brain. Gvaasha knows how to use lockpicks, although her specialization is that of a rogue rather than a thief. For obvious reasons she wasn’t trained in the Thieves Guild, nor does she have a badge that makes it easier to lockpick chests and disarm traps. But unlike the good-hearted Diana our troublemaker has a sneaky but effective trick. Gvaasha never misses an opportunity to throw a handful of sand in her opponent's eyes. The very notion of fair play is deeply alien to most goblins, and our anti-heroine is no exception. What’s absolutely not alien for Gvaasha is an itch for money. Like a thieving magpie, she is willing to stick her long nose into all sorts of trouble for the sake of shinies.
A young huntress who learned to use a bow, Gloosha shoots quickly and accurately. However, all her attempts to tame a pet have failed so far. But Gloosha doesn’t despair and tries not to take other goblins’ mockery to heart. She is generally quite cheerful and doesn't like to have the blues for a long time. Gloosha always has something in store to ‘cheer up’ her friends. Her sense of humor, however, is slightly peculiar. Gloosha's jokes often confuse other goblettes. Thankfully, they are sure (almost) that her jokes are just that.
She used to be thought of as the prettiest among goblins until one fine day she suddenly discovered that apart from being just eaten mushrooms can also be talked to. Gheesha set her mind to serving Gmyrmork, the god of goblins. Unfortunately, among the greenskins magic has always been considered men's business, so the high shaman did not appreciate Gheesha’s newly awakened talent. He even forbade his apprentices to allow the obstinate goblette into the shrine. Despite having a mentor, however, Gheesha was able to master a number of spells, including the regeneration spell. This made some other goblettes curious about her.
To tell the truth, I'm a little worried seeing this group of ani-heroic misfits banded together. How would you, the player, feel walking in green evil’s shoes, even if for a short 7+ hours hike, especially after walking the path hand in hand with our sweet, kind and sympathetic heroines (Svetlana, am I right?).
I tried to give players more freedom in the DLC, but just like in the main game, the outcome of some events is determined by the characters’ personalities, not by the player's decisions. Those fond of Diana's honesty and willingness to share an extra (or not) coin with those in need, may feel uncomfortable about some of Gvaasha’s decisions.
However, Heroines of Swords & Spells is a kind-hearted fairytale which means that Light will drive away the Darkness, and Good will surely prevail over Evil. But for the victory of all that is good over all that is not to come out as truly heroic, our evil pretties must also grow. As they say in the ancient scrolls, without the anti-hero there will be no Event!
Link to the game page in Steam