Improved Newbie Intro Released!

As many of you may know, we have been working on a new intro for newbies to pair with the Remembrance Pools. This new intro is now active! Alas, this also means that you can no longer visit newbie areas if you are not a newbie.

Basically, the newbie goes through the House of the Moirae for a very simple walkthrough quest to familiarize the newbie with some very basic commands. Our hope is that this is no more than a 5-10 minute intro before the newbie goes into live game.

After that, you are sent to the Gardens of the Moirae surrounded by magical pools. You can type POOLS (or PORTALS still work) to get back to the gardens while a newbie. There, you will find the Pools of Remembrance in addition to pools to your city and collegium. The portals to Newton Caverns still exist as well.

Rather than the genie lamp, newbies will have TASKS to perform in order to help them learn about Lusternia and how to get around. Performing tasks gives awards, so newbies should be encouraged to do them. Also, this is where newbies will select race, class and guild. They won't be forced to make these selections right away; rather, they can take their time to figure out what exactly they want to do.

Please give us your feedback!


  • As a not new character, should I be getting these notifications about tasks and gaining experience from completing them?
  • ShaddusShaddus , the Leper Messiah Outside your window.
    I may be wrong about this, but anyone older who doesn't want to get spammed by these can just HINTS OFF.
    Everiine said: The reason population is low isn't because there are too many orgs. It's because so many facets of the game are outright broken and protected by those who benefit from it being that way. An overabundance of gimmicks (including game-breaking ones), artifacts that destroy any concept of balance, blatant pay-to-win features, and an obsession with convenience that makes few things actually worthwhile all contribute to the game's sad decline.
  • Will that also stop the messages from my "achievements"?
  • @Estarra we really need a command where we can summon really new players...even if that command has a disclaimer and requires them to agree.

    Had a player who could not figure out how to get out of some pool and was at The Garden of the Moirae.

    The place has a perm mono it seems (wish you'd have another line for those. Sucks to spend the effort trying to get the mono removed only to find out it can't be). Couldn't even get them out by pyramid as it not on prime.

    Maybe have an item at the portal of fate that we can get and send to them that only works from within?

    So we finally get the person out and within two minutes they drown.

    Rezz them. Two minutes later they log out. Suspect they won't be back.

    Probably should also be HELP files for these quests.
  • There was a bug at the pools which has been fixed. Sorry about that! Will see about summon stuff, at least for guides. Where did the newbie drown?
  • Estarra said:
    There was a bug at the pools which has been fixed. Sorry about that! Will see about summon stuff, at least for guides. Where did the newbie drown?
    Looked like they drowned in the Inner Sea - unless it was a different newbie somewhere else.
  • Deeply grateful about how epic this new intro is, as far as I've seen. I look forward to replaying it for kicks and giving lots of feedback about the positives.

    However, I spent over half an hour reporting bugs and typos, from the trivial to one game breaking issue. There didn't seem to be a room without spelling and grammar errors, awkwardness, or contradictions (eg, Lachesis is standing and sitting at the same time). I also reported a serious bug where I wasn't able to progress at all in the newbie intro because the room in which Lachesis was located was still somehow coded as a room in the progress of being created, not a finished room, and thus prevented me from interacting with Lachesis in any way. In the very first room I found myself in, Clotho and two items appeared in duplicate and two Clothos answered my question at once.

    Was this intro tested? Is it still under construction? Since I logged out and restarted with a new char, this seems to be what true newbies are encountering currently.

    If that's true, I would definitely highly recommend bringing a lot more mortal reviewers on board, because this is not a finished (or functional) product. Usually I don't care for small spelling and grammar errors, but this is the very first thing people will see. It's a lovingly crafted intro and cleverly designed, up until the part where I couldn't continue. Anything that newbies are going to play through should be tested a lot more rigorously than this appears to have been. I just spent half an hour, that's not a large amount of time to invest in troubleshooting.

    Who knows, maybe it's just my computer or server being super weird. I used the character Blergh in Google Chrome on a Mac.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • edited December 2018
    Also, I think there should be prompts after a certain amount of time has passed, repeating what Clotho tells you and what you are suggested to ask, for instance, or repeating where you're supposed to walk. People who haven't figured out how to scroll and keep track of dialogue / instructions yet could clutter their screen while looking at items and testing out commands and then have no idea what to do if Clotho's instructions go off screen.

    What I liked A LOT, among other great things, was that the default now is verbose desc. If that's unintentional, PLEASE please please keep it that way anyway. For a newbie it's so important to see that every room has a distinct description. That's a big, unique selling point for Lusty.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • Thanks for the feedback @Devora! The intro was tested, including asking guides to test it out. Unfortunately, testing intros just doesn't seem to be a very exciting as we didn't get much feedback. Anyway, if you are interested in helping polish the intro more, hit me up in-game and we can work something out!
  • ShaddusShaddus , the Leper Messiah Outside your window.
    edited December 2018
    Just took a trip through the intro. It may need a bit more fleshing out, but I like the general idea. I didn't actively seek out typos, but there were a few minor ones.

    The very beginning was a bit wonky.

    I might suggest that when you first show up to Lachesis, you get some sort of prompt about your belly grumbling or something. There's no actual reason why I would ask this question aside from being prompted. It might also be a good idea to explain about how you need to eat regularly.

    When you get the clothes from the wardrobe, it might not be a bad idea to urge newbies to probe the wardrobe. This will not only award them the PROBE task, but explain how to know what's inside a container.

    The following was rather clever :D

    The rats were a simple but elegant way to show people how to bash, but might be a good place to explain your prompt, and perhaps prior to this, giving the newbie some vials and teaching them Curing.

    When I showed up at the Pools,  I noticed that my inventory was a bit threadbare. Not sure if working on certain things gives me the starter items or not. I ended up with only the clothes on my back, 27 gold from one of the rats, and this...well, according to Lachesis, it's a "large brass key".

    -p key
    Being fashioned of simple iron, this key is basic yet functional, its teeth showing some signs of
    wear and tear.
    It weighs 5 ounce(s).
    It bears the distinctive mark of a translucent balloon-like floater.
    It has the following aliases: key.

    Everiine said: The reason population is low isn't because there are too many orgs. It's because so many facets of the game are outright broken and protected by those who benefit from it being that way. An overabundance of gimmicks (including game-breaking ones), artifacts that destroy any concept of balance, blatant pay-to-win features, and an obsession with convenience that makes few things actually worthwhile all contribute to the game's sad decline.
  • edited December 2018
    Estarra said:
    There was a bug at the pools which has been fixed. Sorry about that! Will see about summon stuff, at least for guides. Where did the newbie drown?
    Oh, the drowning wasn't in the newbie area...I added it as part of that particular newbies experience. I don't know where the balance should be in presenting a dangerous world and not having newbies feel like the world is no fun. It was just a general observation that if too many bad things happen while learning a game it can result in someone just thinking that is going to be the game and logging out.

    A couple of things to consider:

    If there is a waterwalking enchantment, maybe a HINT along the lines of: You're likely to drown, RUB WATERWALK.

    I suspect the actual problem is that they probably tried to path somewhere and drown.

    What about a more soothing death for newbies? Shorter until they're maybe level 30 and with an explanation by one of the Fates that death isn't necessarily a bad thing? Hell, maybe even give them a kiss on the forehead and an hour health buff? Sure some will game it, but not like it unbalances anything. 
  • Bugs were all fixed promptly! Thanks so much to the hardworking folks behind the scenes.

    This time I was able to play through the entire intro. Atropos's basement was so cool! Thank you so much for bringing journals back. Also, I'm super excited about the new pools system, whereby newbies actually get dropped off in a place they can navigate much more easily. 

    Some thoughts for improvement:
    • still lots of typos
    • newbies should be prompted to use PROBE. It's an essential skill, and there's great opportunities to learn it in the intro
    • the final step, Atropos's quest, should have the option to influence instead of bashing
    • in Atropos's quest, might be useful to have at least one mob that drops something that you need to deliver, since that's such a core part of questing
    • newbies should start out with a backpack, some gold, and health, mana, and bromides potions at the very least. Rn newbies are starting out with nothing but shirts, trousers, and the journal. I get newbies should learn shopping early, but it's better to learn syntaxes of inventory management and drinking potions first, then learn how to shop, rather than having to do all at once
    • typing HELP should contain a link to the TASK syntax, since most newbies will probably type HELP first if they're not sure what to do
    • choosing a race is very non immersive. there's no description of the process, you just immediately transform in an OOC way. there should be a mechanic by which you can "remember" your race, along with a cool race-specific message about how you transform. to make sure it doesn't make too many assumptions about the player's self-description, the message could be linked to race-specific emotes. eg someone remembering they're a mugwump could feel their tongue elongating and their skin getting wetter.

    I appreciate that Lusternia is underresourced, with a ton of volunteers, but almost all the typos could have been prevented by running spell check once. I copy pasted some of the typos into Pages and Word, and both apps marked them wrong. So I would highly recommend that at least one writer/reviewer be responsible for doing that before text that newbies will see gets published. I love text games, but if I were to see a lot of basic typos in the intro of a game I just joined, it would be a big turnoff even when the lore is incredible. Which it definitely is here!
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • You know, I'm embarrassed to say this bc I've been among the players harping on about starting newbies out at a more easily navigable point than the Portal of Fate, but now I find myself strongly missing the lore connection. The Portal of Fate was the IC process of character creation, but none of the newbies I make are mechanically stepping out of the Portal. 

    Do you think there could be a mechanic where, in between finishing Atropos's quests and popping up in the POOLS/PORTALS, you step through the Portal of Fate?

    Eg instead of Atropos spiriting you away to the POOLS/PORTALS directly, she takes you to the Portal and you step through it (OUT or ENTER PORTAL), whereupon you emerge on the other side in the POOLS/PORTALS? I think that might also help clarify that the intro has officially ended and you're out in the world. It would also teach the ENTER PORTAL command, which comes in handy later in Newton Caverns and many other quests.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • @Devora I went through the House of the Moirae and don't see the tons of typos you are talking about. Could it be you aren't familiar with British spelling which is what we use?
  • edited December 2018
    @Estarra Sorry to hear you went to the trouble! Thanks to Lusty's incredible coders, they got fixed promptly after I reported them. In total, there were at least 18 typos across the 18 rooms in the intro. On average that's 1 per room, which feels like a bit much. IDs of the bugs/typos I reported are #24704 thru 24711 (Blergh, first run), and #24728 thru 24735 (Blurgh, second run). I also recently found another one, #24743 (Blirgh, third run).
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • I finally had time to create a new character just to check out the new intro. Overall, I love it. I did have some problems I'd like to flag, and I do have some suggestions overall. I know THINGS are currently happening, but perhaps these can be looked at at some point as well.

    Stumbling Blocks for Real Newbies:
    • The aquamancers on Nyalia have a cold attack that does shivering/frozen and leads to distruption. They are the only ones that give afflictions, and there's no hints for how to deal with it.
    • When you GIVE SWORD TO CENTAUR to give her the glass sword, the first sword given away is the claymore in your hands. She gives it back to you, but there's no hint that you need to wield it again, which a new player wouldn't know about because they didn't need to wield it the first time.
    • After leaving the House of the Moirae, new players still receive the message "You currently have HINTS ON, which will give you helpful hints in the Newton Cavern area, the first place you should adventure. You can get there by typing NEWTON. You also have access to the portals. See HELP PORTALS." This should instead refer to the Pools.
    • The final engine puzzle for both sides reset on me after 3-4 tries. Not that I couldn't complete it, but that the answer appears to have changed mid-set because the same sequence gave me different results.
    • At no point does it actually explain the TASKS commands or the ACHIEVEMENTS commands. The hints are really good at walking you through a sequence of them, but they don't cover things like LOOK, SCORE, etc.
    • Gorgogs are incredibly hard to influence. I had to use both sandalwood oil and a wetfold to succeed with just begging. This is too much for a newbie to need in an intro quest.
    • The vials/enchantments/herbs just appear in the inventory without any explanation of how to use them, and at least healing and bromides are needed to complete the Pools of Remembrance. I'd suggest either an NPC or hints that  walk people through sipping health/mana/bromides and the need to wear the rings and rub the enchantments (and possibly explain what they do).
    • The Pool to the collegium, at least for both Serenwilde and Glomdoring, dumps you in a room with no one in it that's a fair ways away from the NPCs who are designed to explain the collegium tasks (Shilo and Grutina, respectively). The Pool should drop them off with the collegium guide so they know what to do.
    Quality of Life Recommendations (not as urgent as the ones above, but I think these would definitely improve the experience):
    • The Pools quests require plenty of sipping of health and bromides. There's no reason to put newbies to the extra work when we have autocuring. The first time the relevant NPC gives someone a quest to kill either farmers or zombies, they could offer to teach the player up to autocuring to help with this. If you want to keep it optional, give a dialogue branch that accepts or says something like, "I think I can handle it."
    • It would be great if TASK COLLEGIUM had a reference to CGHELP INDEX and a reminder that you can access the collegium through POOLS/PORTALS.
    • I agree that it would make more sense to have PROBE WARDROBE in the get clothes prompts, or possibly to find the journal on the bookshelf to get people used to that part of questing.
    • New players can completely skip the food part in the House of the Moirae. Is this deliberate?
    • Status should be added to the About Your Character tasks
    • For the final puzzle on the clear pool side of the quest, the engine fizzles if the key is in the wrong location and gives a white light if the key is the wrong one to use. Since gold light means correct key in the correct spot, it seems really backwards to me that it's white light, and not the fizzle, that means a wrong key altogether.
    Long Term Improvements:
    • The collegium begging quest is now redundant. I'd love to see this transitioned into a quest that introduces people to the guilds so that they have a more interactive introduction before choosing one.
    • Since the aquamancers of Nyalia already give afflictions, the Pool quests could be modified to teach about basic curing as well. This would make the collegium hunting/curing quest redundant as well, and allow it to be transitioned into a class introduction quest.

  • edited December 2018
    So.  Long time player, long absent, returned again yada.  Was prompted to go through intro as a refresher.  Sounded like a good idea.

    I'm getting spammed about this thing.  I don't know how to get there.  Halp?

    Is it possible to get there using Newton Pale Ale?

  • XenthosXenthos Shadow Lord
    Check TASK, and then TASK *taskname*. That clears it up.  Also BUG that it is prompting people who can't go there to do it again (last we asked Newton Pale Ale won't let you in).
  • Returning player! One problem I have run into and I have seen others run into is that there is no way to know how to choose your guild, class, and race unless you stumble across it with the TASKS LIST command or someone tells you how. The current set up can also make it seem like it is required that you go through the pools of remembrance which can be frustrating. On a good note though I loved the house of Moirae. I was a bit put off that the two younger sisters had seemingly locked their older sister in the basement though.
  • Thank you so much for looking at these!

    As for where in the collegium new people are dropped, for Glomdoring I'd like to ask for Grutina, room 14058. I think it would make sense for the collegium pool exist to lead to the NPC that explains the collegium in all orgs, so I can pull those room numbers/NPCs if no one from the other orgs has theirs handy or objects.

    As for the SCORE/LOOK tasks, what I meant is when I was running tests, I was never told about the TASKS commands, so I never looked at the full list of tasks. I just followed the hints and was told when I completed a task. That's fine for me, but as I played through I was never given a hint to try LOOK and SCORE. I knew they existed, of course, but as a new player I might not have discovered them easily because I was never told how to look at all the tasks available. Possibly I missed the hint that explained TASKS?
  • I won't deny that I am probably missing something somewhere but after 20 minutes on that puzzle I gave up. I can't tell which key is right and which is wrong so I've just kept going through different combinations. As a person who doesn't really like puzzles all that much, none of the other game puzzles bother me like this one has. I was told to touch the machine and turn the keys. I've tried every order I could think of. What order I gave the keys to Lucinda, forwards and backwards, random orders and so far nothing has worked. I can't tell specifically which key is right. I am assuming fizzle and white reactions are bad and when I tried to keep the gold lights and put the same sequence in, it changed! Instead of 2 golds, a fizzle and white, I got 3 fizzles and a white. I'll be sad to miss the honours line but I am thankful to have an older character that was made way before the switch so I won't feel so bad because she didn't have the opportunity lol
  • It's confusing because not all keys have to be used, which you wouldn't think because all the keys were important up to it. 
  • Might be better to make a set of "answers" that rotate each time the quest resets, only using 1 of each key.
  • edited January 2019
    Also on ways to introduce us to potions/rings. Could make it so that in the first area in the Pools of Remembrance, on the long straight path, there is a small pond in the way, with a broken bridge. Add a sign on both sides saying to read it. Sign says bridge is down, triggers hint saying(or just add on to sign) Normally you would need to SWIM across. Luckily, you have an enchanted RING. Try to PROBE it to see its effects. Afterwards you can equip it and give it a RUB(to WATERWALK)not sure about the part in parentheses. I think ring with waterwalk is first in inventory too.

    For potions could have both the npc's for murky/clear in 3rd area add dialogue when they send us off to influence saying to remember to make sure we probe our VIALS and take a SIP of the one filled with BROMIDE to restore our ego's. Though I'm not sure if the murky side influences in the same area or not, I haven't tried it. 
  • So I have gotten around to doing the newbie intro as an actual newbie and I do have some concerns/thoughts.

    1. At no point am I being told to chose a class or even how I should pick a class. I think the collegium landing mob should tell us how to do that as well as give some background. Or just remove the collegium influence quest (you do that in the pools now anyway) and have that teacher instruct you on classes.
    2. You might want to get people to learn up to autocuring somewhere near the end (or at the collegium healing teacher). would also be a nice introduction to the learn command.
    3. Why am I human after the pools? Please remind us about races somewhere.

  • @Esoneyuna Do you think the newbie intro should make people pick a preliminary race/class before stepping out into the world proper? 

    I'd like to hear your perspective, since I liked that change. I remember when I was starting out I would spend literal hours paralyzed at my desk while choosing from Lusternia's 50 million races/classes for each new char. It's a beautiful, brilliant, nuanced world but it can be intimidating. A more organic process, with more room for experimentation, might be nice.

    I'm in the process of suggesting a ritual in one of my Glom guilds where we'd stage a ceremonial event for someone who has made final race/class choices to step through the Portal again (or something more closely Glom-related). Developing initiation rites like that would be really cool imo and give newbies something to strive for. What do you think?
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • XenthosXenthos Shadow Lord
    I used to have a whole intro script I used for teaching new EGs when they came out of the portal.  I ended up deciding that it wasn't super beneficial to force newbies through it.  Lots just wanted it done asap.  Alts did not need it, true newbies often just wanted to go explore and instead got roped into an RP chat.

    Some really got into it and that was great, but there just is not a one-size-fits-all welcome that you can do.  What I try to do now is just talk to people, let them know that I am available, and give more direct help to the people who want / ask for it.  Something that happens once the person has already been a little established and gotten their initial investigations done might be a good way to go.
  • @Xenthos Is that intro script shareable? Might be cool to have an option to give newbies during OOC chatting a link to your intro on the forums in case they're interested. In any case, thank goodness for amazing community builders and roleplayers like you, Xenthos.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • Yeah, we purposefully made class and race a task so the newbie can choose at their own time. From our own experience, many newbies do tend to get frustrated or overwhelmed when dropped into being hurried to make that decision.
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