Thursday, 1 February 2018

A fix for errors in the Relationship Browser

Hi all,

I've recently been investigating issues a few players reported with the Relationship Browser. This was characterised by the NPC list being blank and the screen causing UI problems if the radio buttons are clicked.

With some help from a few players over on Patreon, I've managed to track down the issue. The NPC list sorting added in 0.4.12 uses a method that was added in Java 1.8. This means the there'll be errors on machines using an older version of Java.

If you're experiencing the problem, update to the latest version of Java and you should see it resolved.

Hope you're all having a good start to the month and, as ever, thanks for playing!

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Newlife 0.4.16: do you hear wedding bells?

Hello everyone!

Newlife 0.4.16 has been released. Early-access Patrons can find it in the creations section here. The changelog is below.

The previous version is now public. You can download it using the links on the right-hand side of the blog. The public version's changelog is here.

As usual, saved files & templates from older versions probably won't work with newer ones. 

For new players - just use one of the links to the right to get a zipfile containing Newlife. Once unzipped, you'll see a folder containing .jar and .exe files. Either one of these will run the game. 

For either version you'll need to have Java installed. A lot of programs use Java so you might well already have it. If the jar shows up as an unrecognised file type, then you probably don't. In that case you can get it from http://www.java.com/
The exe should tell you if you don't have the right version on your computer, but you'll still need to install java to run the game.
There's a guide for new players here which includes some troubleshooting tips for installation & downloading.

This release adds the ability to get married, along with a first pass at the many parts of the game this will affect.
This is a big deal both for your character and for the code. Marriage's impact is extremely wide-ranging so it's likely I'll still be polishing and improving this over several releases. 
The same goes for the wedding-day scene itself. This could be seen as the game's culminating moment and will need a suitably large amount of content. It wouldn't be possible to fit everything into one version: as you can see from the changelog, this one is hefty enough as-is! 
This version handles a fairly straightforward path through the wedding without special circumstances. The wedding currently consists of a ceremony and a wedding-night. Later versions will add to this with special wedding paths (like the naked wedding), unusual circumstances (a desperate attempt by a rejected lover to win you over, perhaps?) and more in-depth content like interactions with wedding guests and probably an actual wedding reception.

Changelog:


Major changes & additions:
  • Wrote a first version of the marriage scene for standard weddings. I'll be building up the wedding content over several releases but for now there's a functional if simple wedding ceremony that allows you to marry your fiance. Special marriages (like the naked wedding or public consummation) are not supported yet. The public consummation option is ignored and doesn't affect the scene, while agreeing a naked wedding will stop the wedding scene from being available.
  • Wrote a simple wedding-night scene. This has special text for vow activation so you might find it better to disable the “activate vows before marriage” option if you'd set it while playing previous versions that didn't include marriage.
  • Added the formal outfit for NPCs. The PC has no scenes where she wears one at present.
  • Added a new clothing slot for men: jackets. This is handled in existing scenes where the man's outfit type allows for him to be wearing one.
  • Updates to existing content to handle the MARRIED relationship status. This is another thing I'll likely need to work on over time as it affects an awful lot of current scenes. If you see something that doesn't make sense post-marriage then please report it and I'll look into changes.
  • Updates to existing content to support cohabiting with your husband. The game assumes that you are living together once married. The implementation is currently fairly shallow but still touches quite a few existing scenes: living with your partner will tend to restrict your options to hook up with other men. As with general marriage content, this is something that touches a lot of existing content and it's possible some has been missed: let me know if you see something that doesn't make sense when you're living with your partner.
  • One new random event (for married couples). For now husbands still have fewer events than boyfriends as certain events have been blocked post-marriage because they wouldn't make sense for a married or cohabiting couple. I'll be adding more events for husbands in upcoming releases.
Minor changes:
  • Reworked how friendship effects are handled internally, allowing them to be added to custom NPCs.
  • As requested by Karoak, custom NPCs can now have their friendship and partner effect set. The npc guides have been updated with allowable values.
  • As requested by Monokuma, the dance student, teacher and judge can now all be set as custom characters. See the custom NPC guide for details.
  • Added a new makeout action (loving pregnancy-focused clothed grinding from behind when the PC is with child).
  • Added another makeout action where a shy+low-self-esteem character might fail to reject an attempt to remove some of her lower-body clothing. Unfortunately, after writing this I looked over the code again and it seems that the specific situation (lower-body clothing removal + PC having the REJECT response) doesn't actually appear in the game at present. Still, the action's there in case a scene gets added where the conditions are right.
  • Added a new marriage-related MO action.
  • Some bad partner effects will now cause low-self-esteem characters to gradually fall in love because they feel a bad boyfriend is what they deserve.
  • Babies' ages are now tracked and can be seen in the character screen. This does not mean that the game has content for children growing up: the game's designed for a 1-year duration, so your kids growing up is very much out of scope.
  • The lost phone event will now show up about 20% less frequently.
  • As requested over PM on Patreon, I've added an option to enable older ages for the PC in the character creation screen: tick the checkbox in the options screen for this. However, older PCs are not officially supported and there will be some text and game-mechanics that don't match the PC's age . I have reduced fertility for older PCs with 50s and older getting a very large reduction unless they've taken a fertility treatment. Otherwise, they're treated the same as younger women.
  • Added a new special name reaction from Ivy in the male-start intro section... it's been a while since I put in a new one of these, even though I know it's what people really play the game for. Sorry folks!
  • The willpower text for walking home alone from the club when with a man at the end of the night is now more difficult (although still not especially hard). Also added a similar check to the equivalent action when you're at the bar with a female friend.
  • The option to tentatively touch a man's penis is now disabled for sultry characters or for non-shy ones at high arousal levels.
  • Added a section at the end of the vow-discussion scene where you decide whether or not these vows should be made public at the wedding ceremony. Shy and Refined characters will have trouble accepting this sort of thing as most possible vows are sexual or otherwise personal, although you will get the option at the cost of stress if your partner requests it.
  • The special clothes-shopping section of the male befriending scene will now attempt to use standard outfit creation methods for the outfit chosen for the PC.
  • As suggested by OrangeJuice NPCs will not ask the PC on dates immediately after a major bad relationship change such as a breakup or the PC fleeing the altar.
  • The 'About' section now has a list of contributors whose scenes are in Newlife.
  • Instead of failing silently, exceptions in the scene description will now show the error message in the UI. Unlike exceptions when processing actions this will not cause the scene to end. This may sometimes be helpful in custom scene testing but remember that changes to the yml/vm files will not be picked up until the scene is exited (with finishScene or returnToParent) and restarted.
  • A few improvements to how the trying-for-baby status is handled in a few scenes. This will still need another content pass later on though. It remains only accessible through Vows. This will also change at some point, but not in this release.
Changes for user-submitted content:
  • Added a new isMarried method to the player object so writers can easily check if the PC has a husband. Like isSingle, this checks against all NPCs: if you want to see if she's married to a specific character use the npc getRelationship method.
  • Added methods allowing access to Jackets for male NPCs as well as new entries in the documentation. Jackets can appear currently on going-out, business, wedding and formal outfits and are likely to be added to casual ones in the future. It's important that you check for jackets before writing actions that open/remove the NPC's shirt: the jacket should be open or not worn for the shirt to be opened, and it should not be worn if the shirt is to be removed.
  • Added basicDesc methods to access 1 or 2 word descriptions of male clothing. E.g. getTrousersBasicDesc will return something like “trousers” or “jeans” or “pyjama bottom”. This may sometimes fit better in a sentence than the longer descriptions.
  • Added a new scene transition that can be taken in custom scenes: DANCE_TOGETHER.
  • Added a new scene flag that affects the makeout and oral scenes: DONT_UNDRESS. This is used in the wedding-night path where the PC asks to leave her wedding dress on. It also disables the action where she removes her legwear but does not affect removal of lower-body clothing or underwear.
  • Added a new scene flag that affects the HomeDate scene: HUSBAND_AWAY_FOR_NIGHT. This allows an NPC to sleep over. It should only be set if the PC lives with her partner and the NPC in question is not him.
  • Custom scenes should now support NPCs being null and this can be tested via the custom scene testing scene (the null option will be at the bottom of the character list). Scenes where an NPC might be null will need to account for this by checking for it before calling methods on the object. However, this will be a rare situation. You do not need to have null-checks unless your preconditions allow for a null NPC. The main situation where this might happen would be having the PC's boyfriend as a hidden NPC so the scene can retrieve things like his name. Even then, null-checks would only be needed if the preconditions allow the PC to be single. A scene that requires her to be in a relationship (like the blackmail one) can assume that the PC's partner is non-null.
  • New method for npcs: isCohabiting. This returns true if the PC lives with the NPC and is currently only true for married couples: I've no plans to change this but the method's separate from marriage checks just in case. There's one for the player object too: isLivingWithPartner. This will let you check if she's living with someone even if he isn't an NPC in the scene.
Bugfixes:
  • Fixes to text issues. Thanks to OrangeJuice, MadCat, “…?” (not a typo, their username is an ellipsis and a question mark) and Saur for reporting some of these.
  • Updated how the jerk friend talk handles virginity following a bug report from MadCat, although there may still be some edge cases that end up being a bit odd. In particular you'll now only get 1 of the 3 virgin lines (instead of all of them) and they won't appear for sultry characters (who get a different discussion of virginity). He also won't ask your bf if you're using condoms if you're a virgin. You can still get the “sheepishly admits you haven't had sex” line if you aren't a virgin but you haven't slept with your current bf.
  • Added a line of text to an action in the jerk friend introduction scene that would previously have had none.
  • Fixed a bug where the FASHIONABLE trait was being added to every non-dull man. It's now a rare-ish trait as intended.
  • Fixed an issue reported by MadCat where the jerk friend's alcohol-seduction attempt could fire even when the PC was knowingly pregnant despite the game preventing pregnant characters from drinking alcohol in other circumstances.
  • Changed how Vow activation worked to prevent potential issues if the pre-marriage-vows option gets changed mid-game. Changing the option after vows have been activated during engagement will no longer de-activate them for that relationship, unless the engagement is broken off.
  • Fixed an issue that allowed the “always use the pill” vow to put the PC on the pill even when she's already pregnant.


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Enjoy the new version, and let me know if you find any bugs! 


Monday, 25 December 2017

Happy Xmas

Happy Holidays / Merry Christmas / [insert appropriate holiday greeting] everybody!

I hope you all have a great day, whether it's a big holiday or just another monday at work for you.


Thursday, 21 December 2017

Newlife 0.4.15

Hello everyone!

Newlife 0.4.15 has been released to patrons and can be downloaded here. The changelog is below.

I'd normally make the previous version public at this point, but 0.4.14 is already public so there's no change there.

As usual, saved files & templates from older versions probably won't work with newer ones. 

For new players - just use one of the links to the right to get a zipfile containing Newlife. Once unzipped, you'll see a folder containing .jar and .exe files. Either one of these will run the game. 

For either version you'll need to have Java installed. A lot of programs use Java so you might well already have it. If the jar shows up as an unrecognised file type, then you probably don't. In that case you can get it from http://www.java.com/
The exe should tell you if you don't have the right version on your computer, but you'll still need to install java to run the game.
There's a guide for new players here which includes some troubleshooting tips for installation & downloading.

This version mainly adds more content for the BF's jerk friend. This includes a 3-event sequence of short scenes where he repeatedly tries to seduce you. 
More importantly though, if you reject him enough times your character will get fed up and you'll get an opportunity to wreak a terrible revenge.

Changelog:



Major changes & additions:
  • Added some more events for the BF's jerk friend, including an option to turn the tables on him that becomes available if you repeatedly reject his advances but without convincing your bf of his jerkishness in the initial scene.
Minor changes:
  • Fixes to text issues. Thanks to OrangeJuice and Saur for reporting some of these.
  • As requested by Eulexia, if no default male name is set in the options screen the male character-creation screen will now use a random one instead of leaving the field blank.
  • Added a 'randomise name' button to the male character creation screen.
  • Increased the weight of the jerk-friend introduction event.
Changes for user-submitted content:
  • Updated the userDefinedLanguage.xml file with an updated version from Rigel that supports code-folding in notepad++. Use ## foldstart to begin folding and ## foldend to end it. you can use an @tag to flag what the folding is for e.g. ## foldstart @setupCode
  • New addJobPerformanceModifier(int) method added to the gameData object. This lets you add temporary performance modifiers.
Bugfixes:
  • Fixes to text issues. Thanks to Distorted Humor, MadCat and Secondarian for reporting some of these.
  • Fixes to documentation issues reported by Rigel.
  • Fixed a bug reported by fff where the additional NPC options were only affecting custom NPCs.
  • Fixed a bug with anxiety not reducing. This was reported by several players including Flanygo who helpfully uploaded a save. This problem would occur if you had a negative skill increase, notably from the friendship effect that reduces your charm every week.
  • Fixed a bug where Doormat NPCs could still dump the PC if she gets pregnant and they don't know it's theirs.

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Enjoy the new version, and let me know if you find any bugs! 


Sunday, 3 December 2017

Newlife 0.4.14

Hello everyone!

Newlife 0.4.14 has been released. The patreon version is here. The changelog is below.

Due to the delay in releasing this version, I've made it public straight away and it can be downloaded using the links to the right.

As usual, saved files & templates from older versions probably won't work with newer ones. 

For new players - just use one of the links to the right to get a zipfile containing Newlife. Once unzipped, you'll see a folder containing .jar and .exe files. Either one of these will run the game. 

For either version you'll need to have Java installed. A lot of programs use Java so you might well already have it. If the jar shows up as an unrecognised file type, then you probably don't. In that case you can get it from http://www.java.com/
The exe should tell you if you don't have the right version on your computer, but you'll still need to install java to run the game.
There's a guide for new players here which includes some troubleshooting tips for installation & downloading.

This version focuses on a plotline involving the PC's BF's jerk friend. To access these scenes you need:

- A boyfriend who does not have the selfish or jerk personality, does not have the doormat or likes-to-share traits and is not Horse.
- In a relationship for at least 4 weeks
- Some liking and love for him (the requirements are fairly low but aromantic will block this chain)

Changelog:



Major changes & additions:
  • Added a 4-scene event chain based around the “boyfriend's jerk friend” PMW winner.
Minor changes & bugfixes:
  • Fixes to text issues. Thanks to OrangeJuice, Rigel, Secondarian, Fiery Dog Poop, Aethar, Flanjygo, Saur and Never for reporting some of these.
  • Fixed an error reported by DrGong and Antage when you repeat the innocent befriending scene with an NPC you'd formerly befriended by going down the lowlife boyfriend path.
  • Fixed an error reported by Dunan Rayne and Jjrider in the “Friends don't blackmail” action of the jerk blackmail scene.
  • As requested by Kaorok, the main menu can now be resized without cutting off the buttons.
  • Added a potential partner effect for the doormat trait.
  • Added a friendship level check that was missing from the conditions for Rigel's lowlife event. This now needs a CLOSE friendship level to fire.
  • Added some flags to the blackmail scene as suggested by thereisnospoon to block condom use when the NPC insisted on inseminating the PC.
  • Doormat boyfriends will no longer dump you if you get pregnant by someone else. Thanks to Bartran for reporting this.
  • Fixed a “no actions” error reported by Dunkaroodle when the boss asks your innocent colleague to have anal sex during the electrocouch scene.
  • Fixed an issue reported by MadCat where men would compliment you on your outfit even when you were completely naked. They will now only do so if you're wearing at least one article of clothing.
  • Fixed an issue reported by jjrider where your character would mention being on the pill when asking a man to finish inside her, even if she'd lied to him about it previously.
  • Fixed a bug reported by Saur where the “no condom, no sex” option could be picked repeatedly even after the man put on a condom the first time.
  • Added 2 hidden traits requested by Fryett. These will currently never appear except on custom NPCs: UNLOVABLE prevents the PC from gaining love points towards that specific NPC, ODDLY_UNATTRACTIVE provides an attractiveness penalty and also caps starting attractiveness so they'll always begin as being unattractive to the PC regardless of body-type or traits like HANDSOME. Attractiveness can increase over time though so this might change in-game.
  • Added an NPC cunning trait that stops the PC's bf discovering cheating with them. This isn't randomly assigned to NPCs at present but can be added to custom ones.
  • Added new options that let the player modify the starting number of NPCs when a game is begun.
  • Fixed various errors with the first pass at 0.4.14, including ones reported by Flanjygo & Saur.
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Enjoy the new version, and let me know if you find any bugs! 


Friday, 1 December 2017

Next version delayed until tomorrow

Hi all, I was aiming to get the next version out tonight, but I feel like there's too much left to do and I've got to a point where I'm too tired to write decent content or reliably track down bugs.

I was perhaps too optimistic to attempt to squeeze in four scenes in one release, even though none of them is individually massive. I've also been hindered by my ongoing arm troubles but even so I feel pretty bad. I should have seen this coming and scaled back my ambitions or perhaps put out one of the scenes as a yml/vm framework for volunteers to fill in the details. I just buried my head in the sand. It was dumb and unprofessional.


I'm kind of upset about this as it means that this will be the first ever month without an update. What I'll be doing is releasing the public version tomorrow along with the patron one. That way anyone who supported in November but not December will still get the new version.


After tomorrow, there'll be another release in mid-december: I'll be aiming for around the 20th. I'll try to learn my lessons and start off by getting a simple version done that I can build on instead of leaving myself in a position where I have to implement everything I planned at the start of the month and have no real time set aside for contingencies.

I've made a post on Patreon from which this blog post is mostly copied. As I said there, if any patrons feel this isn't good enough then they should PM me over on that site.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Raaaaape!

Hi all,

This is a post I've had sitting on my hard drive for over a month - I anticipate it might lead to a lot of typing for me so I've been reluctant to post it while my keyboard time was limited. 

I feel that I'm getting better day by day though so I'm posting it now before I forget about it completely. Just remember that I'm still not 100% so don't expect me to be getting into long written discussions!


I'd like to talk about a rather divisive fetish: non-consent.

Nonconsent is a popular fetish that's often requested by players. However, it has some key issues that prevent it being part of the main Newlife release. I'm going to put them in a bullet-point list, because I love bullet-points so much that I might put a path into the wedding scene where the player gets to marry one.

  • Firstly, while it's often requested I also often hear from people who are happy it isn't included. While it could be gated behind a trait similar to block_rough, it's questionable whether it's a good idea for me to be dedicating my development/writing time to content that I know a significant number of players actively dislike.
  • Secondly, "glorification of rape and sexual violence" is forbidden under Patreon's community guidelines. This seems like it would block a lot of potential nonconsent content.
  • Third, it's legally questionable for a UK-based developer. While writing the guides for the user-submissions content I found the Crown Prosecution Service's guidelines on the Obscene Publications Act, a law which has been used to arrest people for text-only content in the past. This has a section on content most commonly prosecuted which includes "realistic portrayals of rape".

In summary: Non-consensual content can never be featured in the main Newlife release. It isn't something I'll be working on and it also won't be allowed on the PMW voting list or accepted in scenes submitted for inclusion.

However, with the addition of user-submissions, there may be avenues for it to be included as a separate add-on that wouldn't be affected by the above:
  • The first issue is essentially a problem with the efficient use of my limited development time. However, if the nonconsent content is principally written by a team of volunteers then it wouldn't affect other content
  • The second one is only an issue for content on Patreon. If it's an add-on distributed separately then that shouldn't be a problem
  • The OPA only applies to people who publish content. If I'm not directly involved in creating this add-on and I'm not the one who distributes it then I think that would be safe for me. For example, the team creating it could host it on a blog that they control, and I could simply have a link to their site from this blog here. Of course the people who do make the non-consent addition might have to worry about the OPA, but that wouldn't be a concern if they aren't based in the UK.


I've set up a discussion board on Discord to allow volunteers to contribute towards a community-created rape add-on for Newlife.

This will be a sort of semi-official project that won't be written, edited or distributed by me but that I will link to from the blog so players have an easy way of accessing it.
It'll also need a way of hooking into the main game without being restricted to the testing scene, but that needn't be an insurmountable problem – I'll discuss this further with the NC writers when/if a group of them have got together and figured out what sort of NC content they want to add.


There are some ground rules I want to put in place. These should all be common sense, but my time on the internet has taught me to never assume common sense from every member of a group of random online strangers!

  • First, the NC add-on absolutely must not risk legal consequences for players. As such, it must not include any sexual content involving under-18s, including sexualised descriptions of them or them being present while someone else has sex.
  • Second, if I'm going to link to something and help it connect up to my work then it shouldn't risk negative consequences for me, be they personal, financial or legal. This shouldn't be an issue, but don't do anything dumb like using the add-on to rile up easily-offended people who are likely to form an online hate mob.
  • The add-on should be the volunteers' own work and should not include any copyrighted characters or real-life people. I don't want to have to deal with people sending in cease-and-desists or plagarism lawsuits.
  • The add-on should focus on nonconsent and related content only. Consensual content should be submitted for inclusion in the main-game, as this lets it also be enjoyed by people who aren't into rape.
  • Extreme fetishes other than nonconsent shouldn't be included in this add-on. It's supposed to be the rape add-on, not the "every fetish imaginable" one! If the NC add-on is successful then I'm open to starting similar projects for some other extreme fetishes but the aim is that they would have separate downloads so people could pick and choose the ones they're interested in.
  • Distribution will be something I'll discuss in more detail with the NC team: probably they'll need to set up a blog or something, but that can wait until something's ready for players. However, any distribution must be gated behind an "are you over 18" interstitial and it must make clear to the player what sort of content it includes (i.e. rape) before they download and play it.
  • The add-on should be playable before being released. Something that crashes all the time or runs into a bunch of "to be continued" dead-ends isn't really suitable for Newlife.
  • As I'm not involved in the add-on's development I also won't be able to help with bugfixing. As such, the people who make it should be prepared to take error/typo reports from players and fix them.


The first stage towards this is for NC volunteers to get together on the discord, talk about what they want to work on collaboratively and maybe start prototyping outlines for a scene or two. I won't be organising the group or working as part of it, but once they've got an idea of what sort of scenes they want to add first then we can discuss how they can connect into the game.

If you want to be part of this group and work on NC content then head to the Newlife Discord and check out the nc-discussion channel under the "Nonconsent Project" category.

Have fun, and remember, Newlife is entirely fictional and I do not condone using it as a guide on how to behave in real-life!