Yaga - The Bad Fate Update: Bad Luck, Crafting, Combat and more!

23.5.2020
Por Catalin Zima-Zegreanu, Creative Director, Breadcrumbs Interactive
I’m Catalin, the lead designer on Yaga. Back in November, we launched Yaga, a labor of love and passion for roleplaying games and Slavic folktales. All the love the game received pumped us up with energy and made us determined to take every little piece of feedback and every cry of frustration coming from our players and act on it. We watched lots of Let’s Play videos, listened on Discord, read all the email and we’ve spent the past months putting what we’ve learned into the game. The result is here: The Bad Fate Update! 
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The Bad Luck system went through the biggest changes. The system was always designed to express Ivan’s situation, and create the experience of being unlucky. We probably recreated that experience a bit too well, since the players were feeling unlucky themselves and the game started to feel unfair and frustrating. Yaga is a game about exploration and experimentation, and we want players to replay and discover all its secrets, but we also had to make sure all play styles are fun. To solve this, we put more control over Bad Luck into the hands of the players. You can clear it by paying witches, you can raise it intentionally using magic items, and most important, you can keep it high for as long as you want, to reap all the advantages of learning faster. And when you decide to embrace it and let your weapons break, you’ll be rewarded with a short period of Good Luck, with effects based on your reputation.

Since Ivan is unlucky, breakable weapons were always an important part of the gameplay. The game new allows you to keep your favorite combinations for longer by repairing those weapons, but if you want to embrace Bad Luck, rest assured that all enhancements are now saved when a weapon breaks, leaving you with more freedom to rebuild it. A big addition to the crafting system are Runes, which are triggered when the weapon breaks, and invoke the powers of gods and magical entities. In no time, you’ll want to break your own weapons and unleash their powers, laughing in the face of Bad Luck! 
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The Combat System, all roughed up after the beating it took from frustrated players was not prepared for what followed. It’s been called repetitive, it’s been cursed and it’s been exploited. So, we smiled at it, then spent weeks tearing it apart, improving each bit and then putting it back together. We found something special to improve for each weapon, tool or monster. Tools got new abilities, longer lasting effects, stronger effects and dedicated upgrade perks. Enemies got new weaknesses and abilities, some of them got shields, some of them learned to dodge flying hammers, and other learned to work together against the player. All of them with a single purpose in mind: provide a exciting and fair challenge to the hero coming to smash them to pieces.

Besides the three pillars above, we also focused on lots of Quality-Of-Life additions to the game: fast travel, flying ovens, secret treasure caves, something to find in each dead-end, a larger mini-map, breadcrumbs to lead you in your adventure and many, many others. And it’s easier to discover all of it now by running. Yes, Ivan starts to RUN when you hold down the dodge button! 
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The update adds huge improvements to the game and we’re really excited for you to try it. Read about it all in our patch notes here.

Whether this is your first time playing Yaga, or you’re returning to learn what’s new, welcome and we hope you enjoy playing! The fate of Ivan rests in your hands!

- Catalin Zima-Zegreanu, Creative Director, Breadcrumbs Interactive