Dev Blog #144 – Advanced Spelunking

Greeting everyone!

This is going to be both a very exciting, and very complicated, dev blog. Exciting because I finally get to lift the lid on the overhauls Pit system, and complicated because we’re all going to have to do a little reading between the lines due to the need for more… creative circumventing wording!

The Pit – There and Back Again

The first crack at The Pit was one of good intent and halfhearted implementation. I wanted to go back to The Company’s root inspirations, specifically that of FreeCities, and give players a way to truly feel like a mad scientist in this wild environment. What we ended up with wasn’t exactly what I would consider a quality, or even sensible product. While it was designed with easy expansion in mind, the core systems The Pit was built upon only served to overcomplcate and undervalue the entire experience.

When it came time to renovate the system, the best thing to do was simply to start over.

Humanizing the Dehumanized

One of the first things players will notice with the new Pit is that all Pit Servants now have background information, specifically who they were prior to falling into The Pit and what led them to that point in the first place. These are all randomly generated based on the servant’s age and gender, and serve to add a bit of personal character as you engage with them. This same feature also allowed us to build on special servant’s backgrounds, Lauren and Sarina for example, to ensure you know exactly who you’re twisting and contorting to your desire.

Really, flavor is the big selling point here. Rather faceless numbers, players can build their own stories with their servants and see, through dialogue, how they change and evolve over the course of their stay in The Pit.

Dialogue in The Pit has been tightened up in such a way that servant stats have a much clearer impact on scenes, and you can really get a sense of how things are changing across training sessions, as well as being able to check in regularly and get an idea of how they’re doing just from their landing pages.

The Man Behind the Curtain

All that flavor wouldn’t amount to much without the necessary mechanics to make it all work. The actual act of training your servants is now completely different from the original design, now eschewing the complicated and hard-to-read serum mechanics of the original system in favor of a more traditional training and leveling system.

Yes, leveling. Buckle up!

All servants will accumulate a fixed amount of XP with every training session, eventually resulting in a level-up. With every new level, servants will receive a new personality “perk” influenced by how you’ve been training them. These perks also act as a why to move towards specific progression paths as well. Have you been having your servant dominate other servants? Which is something you can do now? There’s a good chance they’ll pick up the “Dominant” perk when they level up. Keep it up, and you’re pretty likely to turn your former housewife turned Pit Servant into a full on Sadist, and may just end up with an enthusiastic Dominatrix to sell or repurpose!

There’s randomness at play here, and it’s entirely possible your training plan goes completely off the rails, but I believe that makes for some fun and interesting stories, and encourages players to keep working on the system to see what they can get out of it.

Guiding these perks and levels are a set of simplified stats: Sexuality (enjoyment of sex), Willpower, and Loyalty. Perks all have different stat thresholds that need to be met in order to be considered for progression. The aforementioned Dominant perk, for example, requires the servant to be “above” a certain level of willpower. The Sadist perk that follows requires the same Willpower level in addition to a certain minimum of Sexuality. These numbers won’t be transparent to the player, as they only influence the perk pool rather than define it, but they’re also understandable and sensible enough that players shouldn’t need to min/max them.

Not All Sunshine and Unicorn Shit

Now, just like how we don’t all love our jobs, Pit Servants aren’t always thrilled to be doing theirs. As such, players will also need to contend with a random, and often negative, trait assigned to each Pit Servant upon generation. These can be downright negative, such as being Frigid or severely averse to certain actions, to interesting traits you’ll need to work around such as Bratty or Hypersexual, to the occasional straight up bonus like having an Oral Fixation. Traits should be seen a sort of challenge to either lean into, or build against, depending on the players objectives.

Another option, of course, is to use all that money you’ll be earning from this system to upgrade your training facilities, and improve yourself as a trainer. Replacing servant traits, improving baseline stats and skills, allowing for more training sessions in a day, and even directly inducing specific perks will all be on the table, assuming you can afford and maintain it.

Graduation Day

So what is all this for?

Generally speaking, The Pit is a major source of income for MC, and a break from the story or main game. It’s here to be a fun distraction, which I believe in and of itself should be enough! Still, there should be a better endgame here than seeing how much you can get for a well crafted servant. I’m happy to say that there will, currently, be three different options once you’re ready to free your servant from The Pit!

Of course, you can always just “leave” them in The Pit. This will take up a room slot, sure, but there’s nothing stopping you from leaving Lauren down there till the end of time and visiting her on occasion for some stress relief. That’s not really what we’re talking about here.

Seeing how much money you can get for any particular servant will still be a game unto itself, and players can expect values to hover similarly to what they are in the current system. Of course the entire assessment system will be completely overhauled to accommodate all of these changes. We know the assessments are been a little on the confusing side under the current system, and we’ll be looking to simplify that here.

A new avenue for your servants will be to release them from The Pit and send them upstairs to act as “Morale” for the poor employees stuck in the cubicles. Players can pop in and catch a glimpse of what one of their servants is up to, and how they’re enjoying their new role in The Company. These are effectively random events for servants, and can trigger at set intervals. It’s a fun way to see your servants in a new environment, and get an idea of how others perceive the fruits of your labors.

The final outcome for your servants is… well… We’re not ready to talk about it yet, but what I can tell you is that this outcome will both remove the servant from The Pit, and is an outcome reserved for a SINGLE SERVANT. Further details on this outcome will be released when the update itself drops!

The Pit is Dead! Long Live The Pit!

It’s a lot of work, but building this new system has been fun as hell and the more we add to it the more excited I am to get it out to everyone. I think even people who weren’t really into the idea in the past will find something to enjoy here as a sort of distraction from the main game, or to fill in downtime during the story. I can’t wait to see what people think of it!

That’s it for this week! Dev builds are already dropping and we’ll start showing off screenshots in upcoming Dev Digests starting tomorrow. As always, thank you all for your continued feedback and support!

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