Author Archives: Chris

Legends of Amberland II version 1.13

Version 1.13 released

This version, in addition to the usual fixes and smaller interface improvements, focuses on experimental rebalance. The idea is that for most players there is no change, they play using the old stable rules. But for the more adventurous spirits, there is an option to opt-in to experimental rebalance changes. Which allows to experiment with the rebalance without upsetting most players who just want to play the way it is. The plan is, after all this rebalance is properly tested, to make one big rebalance somewhere in future (v1.20 or v1.30 most likely) in a single big update (with the old rules v1.x being preserved as Steam beta branch). Oh yes, also Respawn Monsters option was moved to regular features, so now you can officially grind as much as you want, if you so desire (it can be enabled/disabled anytime, it works with both old and new saves), well except if you play on Insane since on that difficulty you are not granted the luxury of infinite resources.

– [feature] Experimental Rebalance option (need to be enabled in Options). When enabled it will use an alternative rebalance settings (presumably better than the standard one). This rebalance can change from version to version (so the gameplay can be somewhat chaotic, therefore it’s not recommended for most players) and is aimed to forge out the final rebalance. Around v1.20 I plan to move this experimental balance to regular balance in one big batch (with an alternative build that uses the old balance preserved in Steam beta branch for people who liked the old one better).

– [misc] Respawn monsters option moved to regular features.
– [misc] Development markers (small triangle) not shown unless those indicate an error (to avoid confusion).

– [experimental] Only if enabled Experimental Rebalance: Monsters got Dexterity attribute (Dexterity value depends on level, also Trolls got it significantly lower), which affect hit and evade.
– [experimental] Only if enabled Experimental Rebalance: Dragons got better armor.
– [experimental] Only if enabled Experimental Rebalance: New hit chance formula (taking Dexterity into account more).
– [experimental] Only if enabled Experimental Rebalance: Whirling item ability chance increased significantly (to 25%).

– [interface] Added list of known trainers locations to each individual skill level tooltip (the skill tooltip was frequently overlooked, now the information is duplicated which makes it much harder to overlook).

– [fix] Notices (like Evil Aura notice) not cleared on load and new game. Also, one tile in DarkWood had no proper aura.
– [fix] Experimental feature “Auto recast party spells at midnight” was not taking into account the level of the caster (which made it possible to cast the spell by inappropriate character in some cases). BTW, I could use some feedback on this feature, I want to move it to regular features at some point.
– [fix] Spelling and other story related cosmetic stuff.

You can follow my Steam Developer Page if you wish to be notified each time a new game or expansions is being released.

Also, if you have a moment to leave a Steam review of the game it would be appreciated. It makes a big difference to an indie developer like me. Thanks!

Legends of Amberland II version 1.12

Version 1.12 released

The third after release version contains a bunch of fixes, miscellaneous adjustments and one experimental feature, some of you were eagerly waiting for. Respawn monsters is here, as an option which you can enable at will. Personally, I think such option is not really needed to enjoy the game since the balance (on Normal) basically guarantees there is enough resources to beat the game. Still, I understand why some of you would desire such an option, so here it is. In future versions the feature will be moved to regular optional features, possibly in an altered form. For now you need to descent into the experimental features to enable it.

– [feature] Experimental feature (needs to be enabled via Options): Respawn monsters. When enabled monsters will respawn (once per month) on the overworld map. This setting is ignored on Insane (no infinite source of gold or experience on Insane, nope). This setting can be changed anytime. Note that you need to re-enable all experimental options each time you launch the game.

– [misc] Experimental feature: Midnight auto cast party bonuses timing adjusted. Now those are attempted after the rest (to avoid a situation when the cast is attempted while out of MP). This change results in more reliable auto cast.
– [misc] Experimental features options settings are now saved.
– [misc] All special abilities are now guaranteed to hit.

– [interface] Added Invisibility notice on Evade tooltip (analogous to Displacement notice).
– [interface] When fled from combat it shows the time passed notice.

– [fix] Gamepad button “Y” to call Map Notes not working properly.
– [fix] Fix of armor formula (was not working as described).
– [fix] Fix of Hit/Evade formula (was incorrect in some cases).

You can follow my Steam Developer Page if you wish to be notified each time a new game or expansions is being released.

Also, if you have a moment to leave a Steam review of the game it would be appreciated. It makes a big difference to an indie developer like me. Thanks!

Legends of Amberland II version 1.11

Version 1.11 released

The second after release version has some fixes, but nothing really important, mostly cosmetic ones. Which makes me very happy that there was nothing serious to fix reported since the last version. I expected to spend more time on fixes to be honest, considering that’s my first title released without Early Access. Therefore, I could spend more time on features. Two very important improvements, many of you requested. Map notes which you can put on the map as you desire (like to help you remember which location was explored) and an option (for now marked as an experimental feature) to auto cast party bonuses spells at midnight. Some interface improvements were done as well.

– [feature] Map notes. Now you can put colored markers on the map and leave small text notes to yourself (which will be shown in tooltips). Several colors to choose from, some with predefined meaning (like Completed, Too Hard, etc), you can disregard the intended meaning of those markers of course and use them as you desire.
– [feature] Experimental feature (need to be enabled via Options): Auto recast all active Party Bonus spells at midnight. I tossed it together quickly because it was requested heavily by players. It might have glitches (but nothing that would break the game, it’s safe to use) but overall works. Later it will be replaced with a better solution.

– [interface] Map and minimap shows fountains effects in a tooltip (similar to names of locations).
– [interface] Map and minimap shows service type (inn, shop, etc) in a tooltip. Also other, less important things, are shown in a similar way.

– [fix] Levers do not show on minimap on some resolutions.
– [fix] Language tooltip can be shown when “How to Play” menu from the main menu screen is called.
– [fix] The last update introduced a bug where victory status was not properly cleared and was propagated to the new game.
– [fix] Clicking on close button also selected a monster in some circumstances.
– [fix] Quests scroller not working properly in some cases.

By the way, Legends of Amberland II just got VERIFIED status on Steam Deck.

You can follow my Steam Developer Page if you wish to be notified each time a new game or expansions is being released.

Also, if you have a moment to leave a Steam review of the game it would be appreciated. It makes a big difference to an indie developer like me. Thanks!

Stellar Monarch 2 version 1.17

Version 1.17 released

This version fulfills one of my secret desires as the designer. It finally gets rid of diplomatic corps as a separate entity and integrates diplomats directly into the court. I know, I know, it’s not that important to you as a player but for me it’s super nice. I mean it’s very clean design wise, I no longer need to take into account loyalty of diplomats to rebel points generation (since now they are courtiers and standard rules apply), it also, indirectly, allowed me to improve tooltips of personnel (since now I can say “In addition to being a Courtier, those additional rules apply because the character is appointed as a Diplomat)”. Next, I was watching some YouTube videos and read through various forum posts and based on those I incorporated several small changes and improvements to the interface and the game balance. Overall, the game is now slightly more streamlined without losing any depth (actually a bit of depth was added), which is always a desired outcome. Only one fix, if we not count spelling corrections, which is kind of nice since it seems I start to run out of bugs to fix, even the most obscure ones.

– [feature] Removed Diplomatic Corps, now you appoint diplomats among courtiers (there is one diplomat position for All Minor Races and one for each major race). Note: You need to appoint Diplomats among courtiers if you have an old save (otherwise you will have no diplomats).
– [feature] Extra optional rule “Visible Technologies”. When selected will make all technologies visible regardless of level.

– [misc] Removed bonus to All Ministries Efficiency from the court (the Administrative points gain is more than enough to make you care for Competence of courtiers, so the effect was redundant and was not affecting any decisions anyway and was just adding to the interface and mental clutter).
– [misc] Banishing a Courtier from the Court requires stripping the Courtier of all positions first.
– [misc] Level of Ministry renamed to Efficiency of Ministry (more logical and consistent with other similar effects).
– [misc] Color of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Justice switched (for more intuitive Diplomats color, since they use a variant of the color of the Foreign Affairs Ministry).

– [balance] Technologies rebalance (effects slightly adjusted, tier of some technologies adjusted), one new technology added.
– [balance] Budget (Administration) grants Administrative points (+5 per tier).
– [balance] Budget (Administration) reduced Tax Efficiency bonus.
– [balance] Budget (Administration) increased All Ministries Efficiency bonus.
– [balance] Agricultural Standards Act and Mining Standard Act (laws) made significantly stronger.
– [balance] Will Of The People Act (law) increases reform speed by additional +25% instead of +10%.

– [interface] Summary/Empire list all dynastic perks.
– [interface] Bonuses tab on Summary/Empire which lists all bonuses (identical to stats on Technologies screen).
– [interface] House button tooltip shows wealth, FED shares and has proper colors for Authority and Monarchism.
– [interface] Authority and Monarchism on Houses summary screen.
– [interface] Tax changes are instantly updated (to see how it affects happiness without waiting for the next turn).
– [interface] Top bar tooltips improved.
– [interface] Court screen shows stability bonus from houses.
– [interface] Better tooltips for courtiers competence, loyalty and charisma (with extra notes depending on the role like minister or diplomat).
– [interface] Various small interface improvements (colors, tooltips, etc).

– [fix] Removed incorrect aliens aggressiveness report (this was leftover from first Stellar Monarch mechanic which was never used in the sequel).
– [fix] Minor spelling fixes.

And one more thing… it’s not official yet but there are quite high chances the next project would be an expansion to Stellar Monarch 2. Drop by Discord or Steam forums to discuss possible expansion.

You can follow my Steam Developer Page if you wish to be notified each time a new game or expansions is being released.

Also, if you have a moment to leave a Steam review of the game it would be appreciated. It makes a big difference to an indie developer like me. Thanks!

Legends of Amberland II version 1.10

Version 1.10 released

Traditionally, the first version after release is one big bug fix. In addition to the fixes, there are tiny interface improvements (aimed at handhelds: read SteamDeck) and one change regarding chests. Some of you found out that while the loot type from chests is persistent, there is a small loophole, the chance of a second item was not persistent, so save scumming fest began (by people who play on Insane). The loophole has been patched in this version.

– [misc] Now the chance of a second item from a chest is also persistent (before only item type was persistent). Same for gold from chests. No more save scumming!
– [misc] Gold from chests formula slightly altered (to make it more varied between location grades). Overall, the amount of gold was slightly increased by this change (on average).

– [interface] Improved Stats & Skills screen text readability.
– [interface] Shop interface enlarged (prices font bigger, more space allocated to display items).

– [manual] Improved manual.

– [fix] Two plaques text not showing (in caves).
– [fix] Two quest items had incorrect names of NPCs listed which lead to confusion.
– [fix] Two quests not triggering as finished (cosmetic, not affecting gameplay).
– [fix] Doubled NPC in Riverfell (one removed).
– [fix] Obscure bug with quick load while not closed trainer screen after buying the skill but before closing the screen (yup, a very unusual combo to trigger the bug, but the consequences when it happened were severe).
– [fix] Incorrect mapped keys when using spells if party character changed position.
– [fix] Language selector flickering on main menu when attempted to click it when it’s illegal to open it.
– [fix] Mute on focus lost audio settings not saved.
– [fix] Numerous spelling corrections.

You can follow my Steam Developer Page if you wish to be notified each time a new game or expansions is being released.

Also, if you have a moment to leave a Steam review of the game it would be appreciated. It makes a big difference to an indie developer like me. Thanks!

Pricing policy

How the games are priced and why

I wrote this as an answer to all the questions regarding pricing of my games. It applies to all the games released so far (Stellar Monarch and Amberland series). I do not exclude the possibility of another pricing policy for some future titles, but that’s not very likely and overall premise should be universal among all titles.

People ask me various questions, especially frequently “will the be a discount for owners of previous game” or “will those be bundled”. Some of those are not possible to make, like when I have no real information who purchased the previous one, and no tools provided by the platform holder. But, there is a more fundamental reason why those games are priced the way those are priced.

The real and the most important reason is that I make niche games. Those can not and will not sell in high quantities, never. So, those need to be priced higher. Also, it’s crucial to sell as many copies as possible at the full price, otherwise there would be no future sequels. That’s why I try to not discount to too deeply, especially at the beginning and that’s also I do not offer special discount to the most loyal fans. The thing is, we all face a choice, to get it very heap or assure the sequel of a given series (and I know you love those sequels and expansions and so on). That’s the most prosaic reason why it’s priced the way it’s priced.

That being said, it’s perfectly understandable that some have more money and they would not mind at all to pay the full price and some have less many and can not afford it. That’s why there are discounts!

My policy on discounts is pretty simple and standardized. I try to participate in all seasonal discounts and all special theme discounts which are made available by the platform holder. I try to increase the discount gradually over time as the game becomes older, typically and usually (but that’s not a hard rule) for up to 50%.

So, the premise here is that if you are more price sensitive you can still get the game, a bit later, but at a lower price.

My policy on bundles is somewhat less organized. I try to put things that fit together but I avoid putting a new title in a bundle (to assure full price purchases, as mentioned above). It’s again somewhat platform specific since, for example Steam allows to display only 3 bundles at once, so it’s sometimes tricky to include all the combinations that there should be. I don’t have that much flexibility in that regard to be honest.

Regional pricing
Sometimes people ask me why the price in their country has changed (typically when it increases). Well, the truth is I have no clue. In big corporations they have people who observe all the currencies and make pricing policy per region or country. For me, I just try to keep up with the base USD pricing and then keep the rest identical to the recommendation of the platform holder (a small exception is pricing in PLN which I can actually understand since it’s my local currency and I alter it sometimes). That being said if I even have the saying on this. For example recently Steam notified me that they stop taking local currency in some countries and they would charge clients there in USD. Overall, I do not touch those and usually platform holders do not even ask me about regional pricing and do it by their own policy.

Buy the game at full price if you are rich because then there are chances I can make a sequel of your favorite game. If you are very rich, buy all my games, even those you don’t intend to play. If you have less money, wait for discount and/or bundle, I try to put those on discounts frequently and regularly. As for the rest, I’m usually innocent.

Oh yes, also after you played the game, leave a review (reviews are important) and make a post on Reddit or some other social network thing and wishlist all my games, especially upcoming ones. Overall, those are more valuable to me than raw income, since those have a scaling effect.

Thank you for playing the games and for all the support you show me!

Legends of Amberland II: The Song of Trees has been released on PC!

Legends of Amberland II released on Steam & GOG

Today, on 5th December 2023, the sequel to Legends of Amberland has been released on PC.

Legends of Amberland II: The Song of Trees is a classic RPG driven by my personal nostalgia for the 90s era of RPGs. It’s a turn-based, first-person view, over-the-grid movement, party-based RPG where you lead a group of heroes on an epic quest without dealing with moral dilemmas and other nonsense. There are dragons to kill, treasures to be found, people to be rescued, and an evil behind the events in Amberland that you must deal with, of course, as the noble heroes who undertake such quests.

At release, the game is available in English only, but very soon it will be localized to German, French, and Polish. Later, even more languages are planned to be added.

The consoles port (Nintendo Switch and XBOX) is planned for 2024.

The game has a full gamepad support (and SteamDeck support) at release.

Legends of Amberland II on Steam
Legends of Amberland II on GOG

This is the first game of mine that is released without Early Access, so bear with some minor problems that might (but don’t have to) pop up during the first month after release. However, the game has been very well tested and shares a lot of code with its predecessor, which was tested for years, so I don’t expect problems. But one can never be sure, so I prefer to include this warning.

This is also the first game that comes with custom music, made especially for this particular game, which is quite exciting for me.

I want to express my gratitude to all my long and short-term contractors who contributed assets, music, linguistic assistance, and more. Thank you!

I would also like to thank all the nameless helpers, some of whom started providing comments to my design questions years before the project even started. To all the testers, feedback bringers, and others who provided support in one way or another – without you, it would be much, much harder for me to make the game, and it would not have reached the quality it has today. This is especially true since we skipped the Early Access phase this time. Thanks!

So, that’s it. The sequel is out, and I hope you will enjoy it. As usual, I implore you to leave a review if you liked the game. Reviews matter a lot to niche games like Amberland, and they play a crucial role in determining the feasibility of a future sequel.

Thank you for your support, and I hope to see you in Legends of Amberland III (which might or might not enter development, who knows). See ya and have fun!

Legends of Amberland version 1.28.1

Version 1.28.1 released

A small update targeted at improving gamepad support.

– [interface] Gamepad support: Improved Virtual Keyboard (physical keyboard can be used identical to a physical keyboard when detected, more characters supported).
– [interface] Enable/Disable Gamepad option (Options/Controls/Gamepad), useful for people who have a gamepad plugged in but who do not intend to use it. The option is ignored if SteamDeck is detected.

By the way, the sequel, Legends of Amberland II: The Song of Trees is out tomorrow!

Legends of Amberland version 1.28

Version 1.28 released

Primarily a maintenance version aimed at updating various libraries and fixing some very rare bugs. But there are some small improvements as well. Gamepad support is no longer an experimental feature and virtual keyboard (to enter text without keyboard) was improved. Some stuff was backported from the upcoming sequel, since a lot of the code is shared (for example double clicking on load/save opens or saves the file). Also usual fixes, this time for some very rare and obscure bugs you probably never encountered anyway.

– [misc] Gamepad is no longer an experimental feature (enabled by default).
– [misc] Updated third party libraries to the newest version, just to keep those updated, unlikely you would notice any change.
– [misc] Technical update (newest engine version).
– [misc] Removed Turbo mode from Video options.
– [misc] Failure to connect with platform API (like Steam/GOG) will no longer result in a warning.

– [interface] Backported some functionality from the upcoming Legends of Amberland II, Load/Save works by double clicking on the savefile from the list.
– [interface] Gamepad: Virtual Keyboard improvements.

– [fix] Various very big screen resolutions glitches (input text area too big, incorrectly clipped help text).
– [fix] Removed dev only F10 hotkey which, when pressed, messed with display.
– [fix] Potential bug when one party member was not receiving damage from poison.
– [fix] Very, very rare bug of “missing item” chest notice.

Release date of Legends of Amberland II: The Song of Trees!

Release date announcement

The day many of you were waiting for is near. I’m happy to inform that Legends of Amberland II: The Song of Trees is going to be released on PC (Steam and GOG) on the 5th December 2023. The game will be also ported to consoles (Nintendo Switch and XBOX) somewhere in 2024. At the launch day the game is going to be localized to English, German, French and Polish. Further languages will be most likely added shortly after the PC launch.

Feel free to examine presskit for details:

Wishlist the game:
* Steam (PC):
* GOG (PC):
* Consoles (Nintendo Switch, XBOX): NA (link will be available at a later date)

Overall, the game is ready, in the raw form, and now is undergoing QA, localization, testing, etc. So, barring some calamity where I would be unable to upload the final build and press “release” button, the release date is assured.

I would like to thank an army of volunteers, contractors, testers and various other helpers. It was so much easier to make the game with the support of so many of you! Which was especially important since that’s my first game which was done without Early Access. Thanks and I hope you will enjoy the game!