Rebuild: Gangs of Deadsville


Rebuild 3: Relationships

22 October 2014, 4:51 pm

Colin and I are now settled in Cape Town for the first half of winter (their summer). Colin’s going to spend it kiteboarding on the endless, beautiful beach and I’m going to put my head down and work. This is what I’ve said every month for the last year, and does it ever happen? Rarely. Life is just too full of distractions to spend it crunching, I guess. That or I’m paralyzed with fear that I’m going to screw up this wonderful, already successful game somehow because I don’t truly understand why people like it.

Let’s hope it’s that first one.

Version 0.69

So October’s version 0.69 (hahah… yeah) was big on balancing and increasing the importance of happiness and faction rivalry towards the end of the game. It’s still not right; with so many random elements I’ve got to do a helluva lot of testing to know if I’ve made something too easy or hard, and I’m trusting a lot of that testing to the community. I’m not sure if I’ve told you this lately, beta testers, but I love you. You’re great.


I also included Adam’s final versions of the faction leaders, which are really fun and make me want to write them all some new events. I’ve decided every faction will have a special requirement before they’ll ally with you (in addition to needing 75 respect). Like, the Luddies want you to have a lot of farms, the Government wants you to make ammunition for them, the Pharmacists want you addicted to Bath Salts etc. I’m looking for more suggestions.

Also making it in are the start of relationships, the Kickstarter stretch goal chosen by popular vote. Survivors assigned together will gradually become friends, which gives them a happiness boost if they spend enough time together. They can even fall in love and get married. And yes, there are same-sex relationships too.

Sometimes people just don’t get along, and they hate to work together. Force them on missions together too often and it could end badly. Don’t miss the warning signs!


Next month we might see children finally make an appearance in the game. Colin’s helping me brainstorm how they’re going to work right now. It’s pretty swell having him on the team!

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Rebuild 3: Main Leader Jobs

20 September 2014, 4:11 am

Banner for our PAX Booth
Banner for our PAX Booth
August was a busy month for Northway Games. I helped Rich and Colin launch Deep Under the Sky, a psychedelic arcade puzzler about alien jellyfish. It’s so gorgeous… just go watch the trailer for it then nab it on your iPhone before I remember to end the launch sale.

We showed it at CIGGRAPH in Vancouver, then Deep Under the Sky and Rebuild at PAX Prime in our first ever PAX booth. It was an unbelievable experience. I had no idea there were so many Rebuild fans out there! Every time I looked up, someone new wanted to know if I was the Sarah Northway, creator of Rebuild, and could they shake my hand. It was so – I want to say humbling, but it was the opposite of that. It was good, very very good.

Now that Deep Under the Sky is out, Colin’s coming aboard the good ship Rebuild to work on the programming and balancing. We haven’t properly worked together since Incredipede so this is going to be fun. Colin’s first task was to track down the memory leak, which we hope is now fixed in the 0.666 update. He’s also working on the new relationships system (one of the Kickstarter stretch goals), and on balancing happiness and fort policies.

In the new update I also added 60 new backstories (written by Stephen Gray), 11 survivor perks, and 5 new main leader jobs. I finally hooked up the Steam deluxe edition with 5 more main leader jobs for a total of 15 to choose from. Here’s an overview of how they work and what each one does.

All about jobs in Rebuild: Gangs of Deadsville

The first thing you do in Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville is design your main character. She (or he) will lead your fort from humble defensive camp to glorious city-state. She’s your most important survivor: the only one (at least initially) who can learn any skill, and unlike the first two games, she can’t be killed.

Brandy bear was born for this role
Brandy bear was born for this role

Now comes one of the most important choices in the game: pick your leader’s profession from her previous life, back before the infection started. This determines her starting skills, equipment, and a fort-wide bonus that affects the whole game. Choose well!

Main leader starting professions in Rebuild 3:

Job Skill Equipment Benefit
Politician leadership top hat start the game with an extra survivor
Shop Clerk scavenging crowbar 25% discount while trading
Doctor engineering doctor’s bag all injuries recover 1 day faster
Retiree building hammer all survivors are +10% happier
Police Officer defense pistol all firearms grant +1 defense

5 new jobs added in version 0.666:

Job Skill Equipment Benefit
Priest leadership megaphone start with a church and create more devout survivors
Hobo scavenging backpack 5 extra housing spaces
College Student engineering calculator schools and bars are 25% more effective
Construction Workerr building saw half materials costs when building
Gang Member defense shotgun no happiness loss from death or injury

5 bonus jobs for Kickstarter & Steam deluxe edition:

Job Skill Equipment Benefit
Rock Star leadership guitar 25% faction respect and earn respect 5x faster
Pizza Delivery Driver scavenging car and sword start with the driver perk
Programmer engineering science book start with a lab and 9 researched techs
Real Estate Developer building safety hat all build missions take 1 day
Pro Gamer defense chainsaw extra defense but all enemies are twice as powerful

These are of course subject to change during the beta as I discover which ones are pleasingly overpowered, and which are just too exploitable. The bonus ones are supposed to be a little crazy… probably not recommended for new players.

In a future update I plan to add extra perks for your leader that she’ll earn from major events in the campaign mode storyline. Once each city is suitably rebuilt (or escaped from), she’ll be travelling on to the next one with some select teammates, so the job you choose will be even more important. For now, these jobs add a bit of diversity to the skirmish mode and something new to try.

I’ll leave you with another picture from our PAX booth:

Rebuild backer Andy Moore with his zombie self on a banner at PAX Prime 2014
Rebuild backer Andy Moore with his zombie self on a banner at PAX Prime 2014

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