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Erev
Jun 9, 2013


It looks like the thread for Telling 7 of A Tale in the Desert has long since passed. Here's my shot at making a new one.

What the crap are you trying to sell me?
A Tale in the Desert is a fairly small non-combat MMO that focuses on social and crafting elements. The game resets every couple of years and the goal of the players is to pass tests and build huge monuments to the Pharaoh before the world ends and it starts all over again. These monuments affect future Tellings by offering up new and different types of tests within the eight seven disciplines of man.

Why should I play it?
This game caters mostly to people that like to socialize, build camps, and don't mind a heavy grind. It also has a ton of fiddly mechanics to get into such as the crossbreeding and genetics of different species of plant (including roses, grapes for wine, and flax for almost everything). The community tends to be super supportive and awesome and there are some tools that do cut down on the grind a bit (or at least cut down on the clicking.

Camps?
Yup. Sorta-kinda housing with some minor exterior decoration options but in the end they are there as work and storage spaces.


Tell me the bad news.
As was mentioned the game is very grindy in most aspects. Fast travel is also extremely limited and Egypt can take several hours to run across. In the early days this makes each region a bit like an island which does have some perks. The population also tends to dwindle if tests are being released too slowly.

Wait... didn't I hear about this game a long time ago?
Probably. In addition to a couple of infamous events run by the first dev who enjoyed shaking his ant farm A Tale in the Desert also has been used to show the pros and cons of a player run legal system. This system allowed fundamental laws to be created for everything from salvaging equipment of departed players to banning more unscrupulous characters. Oh, and you may also have heard of it in regards to one of the test rewards giving players the power to ban up to seven other characters (the player may return).

Wait, some rear end in a top hat can just ban me?
Don't be too huge of a dick and they won't. Seriously though the test in question ensures that reasonably sane and well-liked members of the community are the ones that get the power and it is entirely possible for them to be banned in return for misuse of their power. On the whole it has worked out reasonably well.

How long do Tellings last?
In theory Tellings are supposed to last a year to a year and a half. Quite often the developers (all two of them) miss this mark wildly. When they miss the mark and there is little incoming content the population can nosedive until the next Telling.

Will this Telling be like the last one?
Malard said that the theme of the new Telling is to be 'discovery'. Whether things have actually changed we'll find out in beta but with new owners we can hope that they've freshened it up a bit.
Updates:
There appear to be three factions now - Meshwesh, Kush, and Hyksos. This will somehow impact at least tech development.

Who are the developers?
Some guy named Malard with Desert Nomad Studios is taking over for Telling 8. On the bright side they already have a newer, more modern looking website prepped for Telling 8 at https://www.desert-nomad.com/

When does it release?
Telling 7 is free to play right now but Telling 8 will be entering beta Friday, February 16th I believe. Telling 8 launch is currently planned for March 2nd.

I'm interested for some reason but don't want to grind alone!
Depending upon where the chariot stops are I'll probably be setting up a guild somewhere in the area currently known as River Plains. You can join as many guilds as you want so feel free to drop in and at least take advantage of the public workshops I plan to build. I'll update this with my game name once I've got that settled.

I've got other questions or comments!
Great, post them. I'll answer them when I can.

Random T7 Screenshots
Egypt... well known for its aqueducts and dirigibles.

Erev fucked around with this message at Feb 14, 2018 around 22:38

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Freakazoid_
Jul 4, 2013

USPOL May

Welp, if pluribus couldn't handle it (and from what I hear he ended up being as resistant to change as teppy was) maybe this game should have gracefully entered the mmo dustbin of history a while ago.

I'll probably fart around in the beta like I've always done.

Erev
Jun 9, 2013


Freakazoid_ posted:

Welp, if pluribus couldn't handle it (and from what I hear he ended up being as resistant to change as teppy was) maybe this game should have gracefully entered the mmo dustbin of history a while ago.

I'll probably fart around in the beta like I've always done.

It probably should have died off around the 3rd or 4th Telling. The new Telling has some interesting changes though. There's now a faction system which Malard plans to have turn into a three-way bribing spree to see what faction can get the most universities. More universities, the cheaper the tech (but also the more expensive it is to bribe additional universities). If you unlock a tech it opens at all universities of that type you control. If another faction steals one of those universities that one university will retain that unlocked knowledge. Public works and the like also seem as if they are faction based but we'll see how that goes. Factions also get 'Elders' which is basically replacing Demi-Pharaohs it seems.

Freakazoid_
Jul 4, 2013

USPOL May

Great start to the beta: They hosed up my account and so far don't seem interested in fixing it.

Edit: Don't make an account through the website! Do it through the game. In as FreakAlZoid.

Freakazoid_ fucked around with this message at Feb 16, 2018 around 02:33

Erev
Jun 9, 2013


That sucks. I did mine through the website and it seemed functional. It might need a package or subscription (because of course it does and I'm a sucker that would buy one).

I'm in as Erev. Working on newbie island right now. I'll probably go either Hykos (middle egypt) or Meshwesh (northern egypt).

Freakazoid_
Jul 4, 2013

USPOL May

I've always maintained this game could use some changes to make it more solo friendly at the start of the tale, and nothing reminds me sooner than trying to get jugs and a sheep pen up and running. It's kind of a minor chicken and the egg problem. You need leather to make pottery wheels, but leather comes from sheep, which need onions to eat, which you need multiple jugs to water more than one seed. You can get around this by growing one seed multiple times like an idiot, or go adventuring for sheep, bringing back one at a time to slaughter them like someone who is still an idiot but has more time. Either way, you need a team to dig up stones, or get lucky finding the few stones spread out on a new tale.

It doesn't help I decided to give south egypt a shot, just because the region is called kush. Onions don't grow good down there I guess.

Anyway, beta's over on friday. I can't help but peer into this game every other change in tale.

Erev
Jun 9, 2013


It looks like live will start in just under 16 hours.

I'm with you on some things like the pottery wheel issue and I feel that in general the amount of clicking needs to go down (an autogrow crop option?) That being said I'm not against it being much harder for solo players. I like that the game forces a certain amount of cooperation.

South Egypt never really got developed as much as the central and northern bits. For there to be an onion growing issue on top of the lack of resources simply sucks though.

I'll probably be going north (Meshwesh) for live cause why not. Unless my wife from a former telling is up there. Then I'm totally going central (Hykos).

Zoe
Jan 19, 2007

Save our dead gay forum you ungrateful nobs.

Hair Elf

Whoa. This still exists?

Never was a fan of the forced cooperation though, this is the kind of game where I'd mostly enjoy just tooling around with the crafting system at my own pace.

teejayh
Feb 12, 2003
A real bastard

Erev posted:

It looks like live will start in just under 16 hours.

I'm with you on some things like the pottery wheel issue and I feel that in general the amount of clicking needs to go down (an autogrow crop option?) That being said I'm not against it being much harder for solo players. I like that the game forces a certain amount of cooperation.

South Egypt never really got developed as much as the central and northern bits. For there to be an onion growing issue on top of the lack of resources simply sucks though.

I'll probably be going north (Meshwesh) for live cause why not. Unless my wife from a former telling is up there. Then I'm totally going central (Hykos).

What did you end up choosing?

Anticheese
Feb 13, 2008

$60,000,000 sexbot


Is this game still a pay-by-the-month affair? The last time I looked in, Teppy or whomever was running it was getting big into bitcoin payments for it (ew).

Erev
Jun 9, 2013


Yes, this is still around. This Telling under Malard has been very different.

I've wound up in Hyksos in central Egypt. We are more or less tied with Kush on tech in the south (they've got FoA keeping them afloat). Meshwesh up north is slowly falling behind.

Egypt has been prioritizing the opening of Body tests in order to get the benefits of stats early - not a bad thing but it does mess with people that wanted to start getting to work on other disciplines.

The devs also have been roleplaying a bit and sometimes drop clues in there (such as bull dung being part of pepper seed reproduction). The playerbase is at roughly 500-600 but it seems to be remaining active much better.

Pricing is per month or a lump sum for a full Telling. The full Telling also nets you perk points which can get you cats, fireworks, different name bubbles, and even single use plans for different looking compounds. I used the breezeway compound for my main camp and I'll try to get some pictures.

All in all Telling 8 is certainly an improvement and I hope they keep at it. I believe that you can still roll up a 24 hour trial account. If you do my camp is just across the road from the main Hyksos University of Body - between the clay and the lake.

teejayh
Feb 12, 2003
A real bastard

Yeah I started as a meshwesh, but it has coordination, it is all the OE players from last tale. They are focusing on catching up with the other two, so public compounds are still pretty poo poo right now. I'm half tempted to move to another region if I can track down an elder tonight.

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Erev
Jun 9, 2013


If you do transfer down I'll probably be offline this weekend. I've got a thing Friday to late Sunday so if you need help getting set up in Hyksos I should be able to do so starting late Sunday.

Where I've set up shop:

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