Re: Town Building Stories

#2
Have you played any good town-building games?  They're not usually about building an army, so are you sure that that's what you want to be the main focus in your story?  Instead, usually the main character is either a 1-person army (possibly assisted by pets or summons) who protects the town in exchange for a home and food and crafts, or the main character is a 1-person crafting or magi-crafting revolution and the rest of the town is empowered by the MC's crafting.

Re: Town Building Stories

#4
A couple of questions to consider which might improve the response you get to this:


  1. What type of game system were you thinking of implementing?

  2. Does it effect everyone or just the MC?

  3. Are you taking this through the common individual lens or the rarer wider societal look? e.g. Donnytown (with aspects of the Ghosthound?)

  4. Do the gamelit elements also effect the villain?

  5. Are they a "player" like the MC?

Re: Town Building Stories

#5
While I'm not writing a gamelit, I am writing a kingdom building novel which faces some of the same problems. The kingdom building is often detached from the characters or plot, sometimes contrived and/or boring.

Here's some ways I've found work well to get around these issues, as far as I can tell:


- growth doesn't need to be shown in excruciating detail all the time. Some of the development can run in the background, while other, unrelated story elements happen


- when you do show town growth, it should relate to your characters and plotlines, in an active, organic way. Maybe mirror your MC's growth through a description of the growing and changing town? The possibilities are endless.


- your MC should have an active interest in the town itself. It shouldn't ever just be a means to an end. A town is a giant blob of culture, filled with people. Treating it like nothing but a weapon to defeat the villain with is a waste. So it's useful if 'develop town' is a goal in itself, only if your MC has a proper motivation for it of course.

- related to the previous point: to make the town matter more to readers, at least some of the inhabitants should be actual people, and not NPCs. Bonus points if you write a couple chapters from their perspective, since they would see the same town from a very different perspective


That's it off the top of my head, hope that was a help. If I think of anything else, I might come back to this thread.

Re: Town Building Stories

#6
Oh if its not gamelit then this should be a lot easier for you as you can ground it in your own reality.


A good way for the MC to have active interest in the town itself could be to have them initially need to rely on it for a while but then come around to realise that they really care about this place and the people within it and they'll risk their own wellbeing to protect that

Re: Town Building Stories

#7
Personally, I feel that there is no need to specifically cater one's works to make it "interesting" to the vocal minority. Just focus on writing whatever and it will attract people with similar taste. 

My thoughts aside, here are some interesting games to check out; I attached some highlights. There is no need to buy or play the game, just watch some youtube videos on the gameplay to get a feel... try not to get blinded by the pixilated artwork though.

1. Beast and Bumpkins
- Males + females + houses = population grow.
- Periodic attacks made by beast.
- Simplified tech tree.

2. Tropico 2 (pirate cove)
- Play politics with foreign super powers that have varied objectives.
- Balance the anarchy generated by troops vs the peace other citizens want.
- Go out and capture staffs needed.
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