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Animal Husbandry I have some comments about animal husbandry.  I'm excited to see that in the developer list.  I've amassed quite a collection of animals with my latest character (8 cows, 12 bulls, 6 big dogs, 3 small dogs, 12 regular dogs, variable reindeer - they become food) and I have kept pigs, sheep, etc. in previous characters.  I have some comments for your consideration:

Animal Products
I love the development plans to have more useable materials come from animals. 
  • Hides/Leather
    Obtaining leather from cows/bulls/pigs is great.  The hides for others are also good.  There doesn't seem to be anything special though about livestock hides/skins/leather/furs.  Maybe domesticated animals might have the potential for higher quality hides?
  • Milk
    What good is milk other than to drink?  I'd love to see milk as an option, rather than just water, in current cooking recipes (porridge, stews, etc.).  Also, I'd love new recipes based on milk: butter, cheese.  I can imagine butter and cheese being high value trade items as well as optional ingredients in other recipes.  Also, milk doesn't seem to spoil or go bad.  I've carried around bags of milk for days (during the summer) and keep drinking from them with no problem.
  • Wool
    I look forward to harvesting wool and processing it for making things.  Building gear for spinning wool and eventually a loom would be a great set of higher-tier craftable items.  I also imagine that would really prompt the need to advancing the carpentry skill to build an improved loom grade to allow higher quality wool fabric/clothes.
  • Horns, Antlers, Bones
    I'd love to be able to make my own hunting horn from a bull or ram.  Also using these materials in weapons and other craftable items would be great.
  • Left-overs from Butchering
    In reality, there is a lot of mess left over after a carcass is butchered.  I encourage you to consider adding a blood spot icon where an animal is butchered.  This might discourage a player from butchering animals on their sleeping bunk.  Also, maybe there is a residual carcass mass left over that must be disposed of.  This could create a trash pile that attracts scavengers, crows, bears, etc. unless it it burned.
Comments on Animals
I also have some comments on animals and interaction with specific animals.
  • Neglecting Dogs
    Dogs are a huge help/advantage for hunting large game, and a player can treat them very poorly for their huge help.  I recommend some tweaks to augment their obvious advantages so that the player needs to balance the cost/benefit of keeping a pack of dogs (I currently have 20+ dogs and have stopped collecting them because of the annoyance of naming them all).  A smaller number of dogs could be more manageable for use in hunting.
    For example, I've kept a pack of dogs in a pen for weeks while I go roaming and they always sit in their pen until I wander back.  It could be that dogs leave their pen (dig out, jump over) if they stay starving for too long.  It could be that those escaped dogs then become a feral pack near my cabin.  Another option is to have starving dogs become aggressive until they are fed.  They would attack other dogs, domesticated animals, other animals, humans (including the player) until they are fed (no longer starving).  Also, I've kept dogs in a pen with other domesticated animals (reindeer, cows, etc.) until the dog is starving for days.  Yet, the dog doesn't kill and eat the other domesticated animal. 
  • Rams
    What about ram sizes?  I'd love to search for a big ram in order to harvest his horns for crafting. 
  • Pigs
    Are there male pigs (boars)?  I assumed pigs were female, but I guess they are genderless in the game. 
  • Bulls
    It seems that bulls have different carrying capacities, even beyond the size.  For example, I have normal sized bulls that can carry different amounts of slender tree trunks.  Is there a way to note or differentiate that carrying difference beyond naming the animal?
  • Killing Domesticated Animals
    I can have several animals leashed and can slaughter them in the middle of a pen of animals, and none of the other animals will bat an eye.  I'd recommend that animals become aggressive if they see another domesticated animal be slaughtered. 
    Also, I've totally changed how I kill my domesticated animals after a reindeer went aggressive after my first blow failed to kill it.  It kicked me in the eye, I passed out, and my eye started bleeding.  I woke up to an angry wounded reindeer.  I killed the beast and smoked the heck out of its meat.  I went blind in that eye until it healed weeks later. 
  • Capturing and Domesticating Wild Animals
    This would require traps for some animals that keep them alive and unhurt.  Some domesticatable animals could include capercaillie, ducks, etc..  The birds would require some form of cage or pen to prevent them from leaving.  Maybe the player can clip their wings and keep them in a pen?  Can a player leash a bird?  Maybe feeding birds grain could help domesticate them. 
    Carnivores, even small ones, and larger animals (e.g. reindeer) probably shouldn't be domesticatable. They would require constant attention and feeding to prevent them from becoming feral.
  • Animal Pens and Overcrowing/Animal Compatibility
    Currently, animals can stack on spaces within a pen without penalty.  For example, I can pack 12+ animals in a pen with a 3x3 open space.  I've seen this also happen rarely in towns.  This also allows multiple animals to be tied to trees than there are spaces around the tree.  Maybe make animals so they don't stack?  Would this affect the number of animals that are leashed at one time around the player? 
    Also, there seems to be no issues with animal compatibility.  I can put sheep, pigs, dogs, cows, and reindeer all in the same pen without any penalty.  Maybe some animals are incompatible when in the same pen (or adjacent pens) to others?  That would require the player to better manage the layout of a farm with multiple animal pens.
General Comments about Animal Husbandry
If you are considering a new "Animal Husbandry" skill, there are several activities that can be associated with it.  It could be used for:
  • gathering of useable animal parts separate from hide working (wool, milk, horns, etc.)
  • breeding, if that is going to be incorporated
  • domesticating wild animals - high skill levels needed?
  • butchering
  • creating pens, cages for animals, etc. that goes beyond trapping skill.  This could also be used to create a pen that is separate from just building fences.
  • Using domesticated animals for labor/hauling - loading animals; hitching them to sleds, wagons, carts; building pack saddles or other carrying slings
  • managing several leashed animals at once (currently, unlimited leashed animals at once - maybe limit that number?)

Love the game!

July 06, 2017, 07:03:18 PM
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Re: More images of people
Or, you would like to add more of your own portrait replacements than there are native game portraits?

If it's the latter you can do that already. Just try adding east9, east10, east11, east12, east13 etc.

I didn't know you could do this and am really enjoying the variety.  If anyone wants more, here is a link to a file of additional face portraits: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B8_pD-gkPX4dR0Y1TEQ1NHkyVWM

I claim no ownership of any of these images.  All of these pictures were publicly available and edited only for image size and file format.

July 16, 2017, 10:51:14 PM
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Killed Companions I hired a companion to go complete an injured adventurer quest by recovering his spear from a wolf attack.  Well, we finally found the camp, got the spear, and then ran into the wolf.  My companion was killed and I was pretty injured by said wolf.

Well, I carried his body back to the village and tried to give it to someone there.  But the villagers aren't excited about me because he died.  No one would accept the body, so I left it in a cabin.  I roasted that wolf meat and gave it away to all the villagers.

What do you do with dead companions (assuming you don't kill them yourselves)?  Will the villagers remain upset at me?  Is there anything that can be done if a companion is killed on a hunt?

July 21, 2017, 04:56:48 PM
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Re: Holy Treasure, Batman! I just dug up a Driik treasure:
  • 2 Masterwork spears
  • 6 superior grey seal furs
  • masterwork birch shoes
  • 2 bags barley flour
  • 2 bags barley grains
  • bronze ball pendant

August 04, 2017, 08:55:48 PM
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Late Night Encounter Paimen Sartolainen couldn't ignore the spirits prompting anymore.  He had spent 2 summers mostly near his settlement hunting, minding his growing flock of sheep, farming his fields, and tending his snares, traps, and trap fences.  He certainly wasn't a warrior, but had become a master at hunting (stealth and bow) and a grandmaster working with hides.  So, when the spirits told him to seek furs at the Kaumo, he couldn't put off the impression anymore...

August 23, 2017, 08:56:42 PM
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Re: Late Night Encounter ...
So he packed up his gear, bundled in furs, loaded his 2 bulls, and set out once the lakes froze hard.  He was going to winter in the unexplored Kaumo and trap and hunt until the spirits were pacified.  After several days of slow skiing across the land, he was exhaused one morning after travel through the night.  So he wrapped himself in furs and slept well until he awoke refreshed late one night.  After only a short time traveling, he stumbled across a band of foreigners.  Normally, he had traded with these visitors in the past, but these new ones were strangers.  Even more, he had little to trade.  But, the foreigners were loaded with goods and seemed unaware of Paimen as he stumbled out of the forest near their camp. 

It was then that the guardian spirits showed Paimen that these foreigners were evil.  Paimen knew he had to remove them from the forest and take their goods for the good of the land.  Paimen knew he had no hope to fight these traders, but he could stalk them like filthy foreigners they were.  So with his bow and with his spear, Paimen stalked them through the trees and killed them one at a time...


August 23, 2017, 09:11:05 PM
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Re: Late Night Encounter ... After Paimen eliminated 5 of the foreigners, he waited for the sun to rise to collect the bodies and gather their gear...
 

August 23, 2017, 09:26:12 PM
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Re: Late Night Encounter ...There was too much to carry or load on his bulls with all his other provisions.  So Paimen shredded their clothes to cords and bandages and set back into the unknown wilderness toward Kaumo.

Later that same day, Paimen realized he misintrepreted the spirits and gave great offense.  He started to sneeze and was cursed with the influenza.  It worsened for 2 days until he stumbled into a Kiesse village who thankfully had a sage.  After resting for 2 more days in that village, and frequent interventions by the sage on his behalf, Paimen was able to appease the local spirits and was healed.  He traded some of the foreigner's goods for some pots and a masterfully made handaxe in that village.  Rested, rejuvinated, and equipped, Paimen then headed east into the unexplored region of the Kaumo in search of furs.

August 23, 2017, 09:36:14 PM
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Re: Easiest way to trap njerps? Several characters ago, I had a bruiser that lived in Njerpez territory.  A few pointers based on your questions:
  • Take over a village and clear out the natives.  This becomes your base for raiding and a place to store your loot.  My character took over a fortified village that bordered the southern sea.  There was a well in the village (a water tile), so I rebuilt the houses into a compact settlement with a few animal pens.  I surrounded the base with a pit trapped fence.  No one ever came to visit or assault my base.  But I felt safer.  (Note: After so much loot piles up, being near the coast allows an easy multi-day punt trip to the southern cultures to trade.)

  • This is a risky strategy.  It is very hard to control how many villagers you "pull" and you might have a challenge hiding or losing those villagers who pursue you.
         A. If you want to attempt these assault, I recommend you do it during the winter at night.  Creep near Njerpez villages and alert a Njerpez villager to draw them away.  Try to pick them off, but the villagers might not follow you as you get further and further away.
         B. An alternative strategy to clear a Njerpez Village is to sneak near the village and find a building that has a 1x2 interior dimension.  Then, run into that building and hold off the villagers as they assault you one at a time.  If you back yourself into that building, you should be able to limit your opponents to one assaulting at a time.  You'll need to rest by dodging or not attacking (but do counter) to prevent you from getting too tired.  Additionally, if you knock one opponent unconscious, a second opponent will step into the same square as the downed villager.  If that unconscious villager recovers, then you have 2 villagers stacked on top of each other, both attacking you, but you can't pick which opponent you attack.  After a while, the villagers get tired and then exhausted and it is easier to mop up at the end. 

  • I know of no way to attract an NPC from the map screen.

On a related note, has everyone ever successfully (and intentionally) trapped multiple Njerpez?  Do you think a series of pit traps would work like this (X=fence and O=trap):
XX
  XX
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX
       O  O  O  O  O  O
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX
  XX
XX

September 05, 2017, 03:30:08 AM
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Orja Reemailainen Part 1: The Story Begins...
I try not to remember much from my time as a child, but some memories won't go away; a smiling woman with long golden braid who would comb my hair with her precious bronze comb decorated with a running horse; a huge man with scarred hands and a booming laugh who would throw me into the air and catch me as I laughed; brothers who would bring a brace of grouse or string of fish back for dinners; a large milk cow in the yard.  I mostly remember light, warmth, and love.  Then the demon raiders from the east came at night with fire and iron.  Isa yelled for me to get help from a near village, but I didn't even make it to the trees before they caught me.  Terror and my burning house... that is all I allow myself to remember of that night... my family... gone.  Even now, I am consumed by loss and rage as I think of what was taken from me...



As the sun rose the next morning, I was put on a raft and taken far away from all I knew.  I was made a slave to those demon raiders, the Njerpez.  I secretly took care of my ways, vowing to avenge my family's spirits.  One day, I saw a warrior's wife using my mother's bronze comb and I flew into a rage.  I was punished, but I knew who had destroyed my life.  I slowly learned the names of those raiders who killed my family, and they became my list... Kaipia, Ruuri, Kalevi, Kaipia, Hirvo, and Rautia.  I learned, watched, and grew large, like my father.  I banked my fury and nurtured my hate for these men as I slaved for these Njerpez.

One evening, these 6 were boasting to some of the younger warriors about a raid a few years ago into the Reemi.  They boasted of their power as they described sneaking through the forest up to my home.  Rautia laughed as he showed my mother's prized bronze comb and pointed toward me as I tended the evening fire as a sample of the wealth they took by their might.  The young warriors lusted the glory and wealth and they began that night to return to the Reemi for another raid.  I convinced Kaipia I would be a help to locate the villages that surrounded my family's homestead, and the fool agreed.  I was the only slave taken to care for a raiding party of 10. 

Once we landed the rafts on the shore, the raiders crept through the forest back to my homestead's clearing.  They repaired 2 of the cabins that were partially standing and started to prepare for their raids into the nearby villages.  As they were checking their gear, I realized I was alone in the middle of the camp and took my chance as I ran...

September 07, 2017, 08:50:34 PM
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