5 min read

Welcome to your first day 🤝 ...on One Last Job 👥

This one introduces the (prototype) game systems and interfaces you'll find when you play One Last Job, our cyberpunk-fixer team management game!

Hey! Did you change something? Get a haircut?

I'm so pleased you noticed! Indeed, I decided to change providers for our newsletter & website software after last month's newsletter (I did also get a haircut, fwiw).

While SendPulse (our previous provider) was fine, I've been wanting to go with a slightly more WYSIWYG newsletter tool for a while; so now we're using Ghost! There's some things we had to give up, however I'm happy that a bunch of other things are way more streamlined w/ Ghost (and there's still a bit of work left to do to finish moving in).

It took me a little longer than expected to get this tech rolling - so I'm sorry for this June 2024 newsletter showing up in more like mid-July! I also took a little hiking vacation at the end of June that hit me like a sack of bricks, so the first week and a half of July 2024 had me on my heels a bit.

A blue-green lake in a mountain valley with rain clouds wrapping the surrounding peaks.
Morskie Oko is the largest lake in the Tatra mountains of southern Poland.

The hikes were certainly a ton of fun – just a lot harder than I remembered!

Good for you! So... what does moving to Ghost mean for me?

It means you'll see a different style of email when I send out this newsletter (again, thank you for noticing already!); otherwise, you don't need to do a thing - just please keep on reading and replying when I write you an update. :)

Are you still making games, or is it just hiking & websites now?

Oh yeah, the games! We definitely still do games!

Another Round saw a few small bugfixes in June, mostly focused on localization support; languages & fonts are harder than you'd think, but I'm grateful to have Billy and Robin (linktree) on my side. We've also brainstormed a pretty significant change to the resources subsystem, which is going to have a rippling effect on the design of some named cards & minor events – we'll let you know where that lands when we come back to it at the end of the year, though.

Null State continues to evolve thanks to the tools we discussed last time. Pip (site) and Dean are adding characters and stories as fast as they can; I'm really loving how this dystopian utopia is shaping up! Alasdair (homepage) recently came back for a bit to give the team some technical assistance; he's cleared a narrative log-jam in his short time back with us, and I'm really excited to share more of his contributions w/ you (maybe next time)!

Fine, great... can you please get to One Last Job?

Well, the great news is that we DO have stuff to share about OLJ today!

First, let's talk about what One Last Job IS: OLJ is a team management game where you work to build your reputation as a fixer by successfully completing jobs with your crew. Inspired by the high turn-over one sees in many tactical RPGs, you will manage an ever-changing crew of characters through more and more complex jobs until you become the most renowned fixer in the world.

Next, how's about we get a look at our WIP title screen and some menus??

Starting the Game

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We'll change the menu up a bit in the future (to make it look more like Another Round). I'm kinda in love with that background, though!

I'm happy that Billy & Robin were able to port over a lot of these screens directly out of Another Round, with some pleasant animations giving us a minor-yet-significant change in style.

One thing that's new: did you see the datapack management screen? We've only got two packs for the moment, however the plan is to let the player add more - either their own, or ones that other players create - which I think could be pretty cool for extending and expanding OLJ in the future.

Hiring a Crew

If you want to win the game, you'll need to have a crew to send on jobs.

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We'll have more character names by the time we release OLJ.

Since the mechanics of the game are based on the Tricube Tales TTRPG system, you'll always be offered one of three kinds of characters when you decide to hire someone: an Agile, Brawny, or Crafty character. Rerolling is easy & cheap (& attractive; look at that little die spin!); since there's plenty of jobs & modifiers (thanks to Dean & Drummond!), you'll never run out of curious combinations to explore.

Doing A Die Hard

Once you've assembled your crew, you'll need to do jobs successfully to increase your reputation and earn money for crew upgrades.

All jobs consist of a series of phases (sneak around; crawl in some vents; do a die hard) which are attempted by the crew you send on the job. Completing more phases successfully gives you a better chance of completing the entire job successfully, so you'll want to send your best, most balanced crews on tough jobs!

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There's not much happening here right now; we'll add some action shortly!

Job phases can either be run automatically (on a timer) or stepped through manually. When a job is running automatically, the plan is to have some on-screen pawns who will act out each phase – either competently (when they will succeed) or with comedic incompetence when they're going to fail their checks. I'm very excited to see what Robin and Billy come up with for that, since that shadow-puppet play is bound to be the most complicated part of this whole game!

Gee whiz, I can't wait to send my crew on dangerous jobs!

You need to be careful with the crew you hire! They can be injured, and will retire from the biz if they get hurt too often while working for you. Equally, once they've got enough experience and earned their keep, they will also retire – so it's important to keep staffing up and rotating through the characters you send on jobs.

Has Ghost been all you'd hoped for and more?

Yeah, actually, writing this month's newsletter has been great (except for how many times I've written newsletter)!

I liked that I could embed videos quickly without having to convert them to gifs first, I like that it handles scheduling the email for me automatically, and... while there's less formatting options (e.g. - there's no way to put text in a box to the left or right of the pictures, as far as I can see)... well, I think it looks alright how it is.

While you're waiting for next month's update on One Last Job, please drop me a mail to let me know if you like the change to our new platform as much as I do!

Until next time... Happy hiring!