Thursday, October 30, 2008

Changes in the basics: Villages

I’ve made a change in my design document.

There are 2 kinds of villages.

1.     ‘Resource villages’

2.     ‘trading villages’

Resource villages are smaller and have a certain amount of one or more kinds of resources. And you can only build buildings to gather resources or to make goods.

Trading villages are usually bigger and you can only build shops or buildings which deliver services.

Both kinds of villages can contain governmental buildings.

You don’t have a ‘home village’ anymore. First of all you have to build a warehouse in a village to be ‘active’ in that village. Then you can buy building grounds (just like before) and build buildings etc. So every good from your buildings in that village go to your warehouse in that village, and you have to transport goods between warehouses. So you will have to build 2 warehouses at least: one in a resource village and one in a trading village. For the rest everything stays the same, expect you don’t have to buy land anymore, but build the right type of building and upgrade it so it can contain more workers. (so there will be a building: woodcutter, sawmill, … ).

When a resource town is depleted you can move your workers to other buildings and destroy the buildings which gather resources and build buildings which make goods.

The pros:

  • -          More interesting gameplay
  • -          Simpeler?

The cons:

  • -          I have to revise the taxes system and politics

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Current state of development

Edit: This post may be a bit messy

Start of the new school year
The first of September was the start of the new school year. This had a serious impact on my spare time (obviously), and school is taking a lot of my energy. So from now on things will probably go even slower. It’s just that you know!

Modular Gaming
I have decided that I’m going to work with a framework for browser based games, called Modular Gaming. ( That means that I don’t have to set up the login, registration, inventory, … off course I’ll have to change some things. But it saves me a lot of time and work. However, with my programming skills, it’s going to take me long enough.
For the ones of you who want to make their own browser based game, you should really check it out!

My illustrators
Now I’m going to tell you a bit about my illustrators. Two eighteen year old guys were willing to make some (well, a lot) drawings etc. for my game. One of them is a cousin of a friend, the other one is a friend of a friend. I have spoken with them on msn and mailed with them.
Because one had an accident he wasn’t able to do anything yet. The other one is already making some drawings and sketches. I haven’t seen them yet, but I’m very curious! They can take their time, because it will take ME very long to program my game. I hope that I can post some sketches soon.

The next steps
The next steps in the development of CeasterTrade will be the programming of all the basic stuff, which will take a while. I will have to learn and practice. If that’s done I will concentrate on some more “special” features.

The name
As last item I will shortly explain the name CeasterTrade. “Ceaster” is old English for City, I chose the name because of the sound and because the game is all about trading and cities (trading in your own city, or with another city). What also represents the feature of “virtual cities” which creates almost a storyline.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Customizable shops

In CeasterTrade you will be able to customize your shop. This has 2 purposes:

1. Marketing. Everything you do has influence in your visibility and you can convince people to
buy their stuff in your shop quick and cheap.
2. Just the fun of the customization. This could go with contests for the best looking shop etc.

Every shop will have a main building. To see the discounts, prices etc. you’ll have to go inside. BUT a shop owner will be able to buy extras! And I hope you will help me decide which extras that will be. I had already some ideas:

1. A pricelist next to the main building.
2. A sign (banner). Some basic banners and also the possibility to upload one yourself.
3. A message.
4. A shop name (I think that’s a very important one, so people will recognize you!)
5. Spotlights. This is a very original one, but maybe not a good one. So there will be spotlight
shining on the shop so it is more notable.
6. This is not really for visibility, but I could make a little change to the discount feature and
make people pay to enable it.
7. This spot is for my blog readers to come up with some ideas!

I’m awaiting your opinion and maybe some ideas! Then I’ll soon make a poll.

Friday, August 8, 2008


The past few days I’ve been thinking about the chat. As I mentioned before in this blog, my original idea was to make a chat room in the inn. I changed that and decided to make a small chat on each page. I was thinking about the following features:

1. A list with all the users that are online in the chat.
2. Different “tabs” or “rooms”. So there would be a room for each village and an “international”
room etc.
3. Private chat.

With all these features in mind, and the fact that there might be a lot joining a conversation in the chat, I decided to return to my original idea and to make the chat in the inn.
What do you think?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Rounds and special certificates

I don’t know yet how long rounds will last. But it will be between 3 and 5 weeks. between rounds you can change your home city.

Special certificates
I also will add special certificates. They don’t lower the cost for the workers to make a certain product, but they will have other effects. That can be the right to start something (like a private bank) or to shorten the time that is necessary for a certain action or that will lower other costs.
I have some ideas for special certificates, but when the game grows, more special certificates will be available.
1. Merchant (lower the toll cost?)
2. Private bank (makes it possible to start a bank)
3. Stock market expert (lower or ban the transaction cost for shares)?

The Buildings

I promised you in the previous entry that I was going to post something about the shops and buildings, so here it is: A list with all the buildings and descriptions till now. In a later phase of the game probably a few more buildings will be added. And also there will be added some more features in some of the buildings (like in the stock market).

The Town Hall
This is probably the most important building in the game. Here you can hire workers, vote for the major of the next round and buy certificates.

The Inn
At the beginning I wanted to build the forum here. But I decided to add a simple link in the menu to the forum. Now I’m thinking off making a sort of bulletin board-like thing. But I haven’t totally figured this out yet. So if any one of you has an idea, please, tell me.

National Bank
You have to pay administration costs for everything you do here. You can borrow money and open a bank account (for money transactions and you get a small interest), but all this for high tariffs.

Private Banks
Players can open a bank themselves. They should be able to make a lot money with it, but you also have to have some money already to start a successful bank. They would be able to offer the same services as the national bank but for lower tariffs, and they would be able to offer deposits.

Stock Market House
Here is the stock market. I’m going to try to expand the stock market when the game is running successfully, and to ad A LOT of features here. But to begin I will keep it modest.

A player can buy shares here. Obviously. Not shares from companies, although I’m planning to add this MUCH later. But you can buy shares from sectors. Sectors would be divided in products and cities. So an example for a sector would be: “the wood sector from city 1”. So when there is selling a lot of wood in that specific city that hour, the shares go up. If the next hour there is less wood being sold, the price of the shares goes down.

There is also a transaction cost for every transaction of shares.

In my example I used hours, but this also could be days. What do you think is best?

The Town Hall’s Market
The products that the mayor has imported will be sold here.

The Market
The market has a double function. Products that players have bought in other villages will be sold here. AND players can offer a LIMITED amount of products here if they pay a small fee.

At the beginning of the game, I will start with the town hall, the town hall’s market and maybe the stock market and the market. The rest I will add later.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The basics

Every round you start with a certain amount of money (CeasterCoins) and your aim is to end the round as the richest player.

The most common way to make money is to produce your own goods and to sell them.

First you have to decide in which city you will live and work. Every city has advantages and disadvantages. Of course you will be able to travel and import and export goods.
Now you will choose which product to produce. What does my city need? And what will make me the most money?

These are all the goods in the game:
1. Trees
2. Iron ore
3. Gold ore
4. Diamond
5. Coal
6. Clay
7. Salt
1. Axes
2. Pickaxes
3. shovel
4. saw
5. iron
6. wood
7. gold
8. hamper
9. stones
10. glass
11. jewels
12. furnace

Now you will build a shop. You have to buy 3 things:
1. Building materials
2. A construction ground
3. money

You can buy them in various shops. Most likely in a shop owned by another player, I’ll discuss other shops later in my blog. Or you can make them yourself of course. A construction ground can be bought in the city, next to the shops, and it’s the task of the mayor to make sure that there are always enough building grounds available.

Building or leveling up your shop or warehouse is easy and real-time (more about the real-time element later in this entry). There’ll be also a possibility to buy extra’s for your shop (like pricelist, etc.).

The last thing you have to do before you can start producing goods is to hire workers and to buy land and/or tools. You can hire workers in the town hall and buy land on the map. You always need hampers to transport your goods.

When you produce goods you will put some workers to work. You’ll have to use the right sort of worker for the right sort of product (e.g. woodcutters to cut trees). And before that you will have to give them the right tools (e.g. the woodcutter needs axes). Then your workers will work for a certain time (e.g. 30 min.)(That’s the real-time element) and when they’re finished, the goods will be transported to your warehouse and their wage will be automatically deducted from your money.

Then you’ll have to set the price, transport the goods to your shop and other players will buy it! (Hopefully ;))

That’s the basic of the game. I will discuss other game elements in my next entries.

Comments are more than welcome! :D

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Project


My name is Janne Siera. I am making my first browser based game, that is my project.

This blog is to keep you up to date about the developments, but more important, to get your feedback.

CeasterTrade is an online trading game. In a medieval setting with modern elements you have to built a shop, buy or gather resources and produce your own goods, and then sell them ofcourse!

In the next posts I will explain the game more in detail.

And don't forget to comment! Because feedback is what this blog is about!