Hi Ligia! I was so excited to see that one of my very favorite games has had an update, and was thrilled to get back into it. I've tried to hold myself back for a bit so I could enjoy a larger chunk of content but I failed to abstain and gave in to temptation. What can I say, I'm incredibly weak-willed when it comes to this game.
Here is my incredibly long reply to the questions you put to us. Like, I'm sorta sorry, but I had to get it out of my system, so... :D
Is Matt and MC's relationship (the reason why it's so complicated) clearer now? Very much so, and I love the complexity of it, and the drama, naturally. I'm a sucker for drama. I can't wait to see all the moments of push and pull between Mathias and dragon commander as he begins his reign, and how Matt plans to sooth the savage, wounded, vengeful beast (cos he's gonna make him earn it if my character has any say in it. lol), and how they heal, grow and further compliment each other over time. It's gonna be a fun journey. :)
The dream scene takes into consideration many of your past choices. Did you try different choices? I had no idea it did. I mainly play the strict, dominant dragon commander options (I play a male DC) cos I'm just in love with that power dynamic - I have trouble being too nasty to Matthias unless the 'harpy' choices are said more in fun, or in private, and I find the straight up 'nice' choices aren't where I want my dragon commander to go in terms of personality/actions (which... sorry Matt - I love gentle and kind Mattie, but I don't wanna play a gentle and sweet and obedient DC just to keep him that way, so them's the breaks, I guess?). I did try some different choices within the dream sequence, but not in terms of 'different personality' playthroughs, yet - mainly because I just started the game over again with the extra content being added into the story.
What was your favorite and least favorite thing about this update? Well, I ALWAYS love the dynamic between Matt and the DC, and I'm really enjoying how well you're fleshing out the backstory and complexity of Matt and DC's relationship (both past and present). I have to say I really admire that, and I think the way you've gone about it shows your maturity and skill as a writer. I also really appreciate the subtleties like sound effects, the "seeing red"/pain/whip screen effect when DC has that dream, and the carefully chosen music tracks. I may have said this in an earlier comment, but you can really see how much thought and effort you put into this game, and that it's clearly a labor of love for you. I'm sure I'm not the only player who's noticed this. :)
I also really like the new sprites you've added in for Valencia, and the intricate detail updates to Mattie's outfit (Mandra's too, iirc?). Also holy shit, when did Matt get that hella defined body?! Do you know how hard you're making this for my DC? Come onnnnn, my DC seriously needs to "love" that king, if you know what I mean. ;D
The sprites really are too too pretty, and I think that's one aspect of this game that doesn't get praised nearly enough. You may remember (or maybe not) that it was something I mentioned really loving about this game in the first place - the charming, whimsical style of the sprites and the black and white color scheme. Honestly, I really hope you never change the scheme as it's part of what makes this game so unique and in it's very own niche. Maybe I'm just being sentimental but it seems to transmit the sense of sadness, longing and nostalgia of the scenes and story so much better then color ever could. I love it. I love the expressions you use too - the subtle shifts in them, to what's being said or what's going on at the time. I especially adore Matt's sweet little expression shifts. Also, was it my imagination or was Valencia's sprite looking a little too much like the cat that got the cream when DC told her not to take her eyes off Matt when she had to guard him in DC's stead? Cos girl, I know he's a total specimen, but honey, he's your future king so keep it above the waistline (I probably imagined it but I'm gonna pretend I didn't, cos I loved that detail way too much). :D
In terms of what I wasn't a fan of.. well, to be honest I was really surprised to see you took out the Mandreis waterfall intimacy scene, or rather, the choice to go further with them rather then have Mandra push the DC away (Unless I messed up some prior option that would have made it possible?). I assume that was in the prior update, which I forwent in favor of waiting. In any case, I was kinda disappointed about that being gone, but I assume you decided you wanted to eliminate any chance for the DC to start a relationship with Mandra? Obviously that's totally your choice, but I do find it a shame as I found the dynamic and relatable treatments between DC and Mandra very interesting and fun to explore as an alternate to Matt and DC's path. I think it's just that a huge part of me really wants to give Mandra the love they deserve too, because I love their character and I feel like they're alone and lonely way too much, which makes me stupidly sad to think about. Are there any plans for Mandra and DC in future, or has any possibility for that ship well and truly sailed?
And that's pretty much all I can nitpick about. The content of this update was great - it really does just get better and more engrossing with each update.
Which character would you like to learn more about? Honestly, I would LOVE to meet Matt and Mandra's little sister, to be able to complete the current family picture (and maybe see some more content with her in future?). I'd also really like to learn more about the details on how Matt fell in love with the DC in the first place.. and since there's no longer the sex scene in the gazebo in this new update (again, unless I went wrong somehow?), where was their first time? Also, can we get a flashback to said 'first time' back in the game, cos my DC wants to do things to that cutie Matt... like, a lot. It's definitely not me, it's my DC (and that's the line I'm sticking with xD).
I also really like Mandra and would definitely not say no to getting to know more about them.
And more about their mother, hopefully, before she passes. Maybe when she passes the DC could have a flashback of some time they spent together when the DC was a child and she doted on them, and decide how they feel about the queen's passing with that and whatever other interactions they have with her before that considered - with DC feeling things like sadness, bitterness, maybe regret for not being able to properly convey appreciation for her kindness, and then the reality of that era ending and the incredibly responsibility now on their shoulders with the beginning of Matt's reign. Also, I gotta be able to console Matt and Mandra at that time, even if my DC acts like a domineering dick most of the time (he does it out of love lol), I just gotta put that aside to be the shoulder to cry on. Maybe some reminiscing over younger days with the queen and mutual consoling, the chance to wipe away their tears and hug them or something. Ergh, it's making me sad thinking about it!
And the blooming ceremony! I mean, as well as ascending to his birthright, this really feels like a sort of 'coming of age' moment in how it's sounding to me, possibly because Matt always acts so hush hush and sort of embarrassed about it, concealing stuff from DC ('you didn't hear what we said, did you?'), almost makes it feel like he's a virgin bride before his wedding, learning about what goes on after the wedding lol. I feel this sort of undercurrent of coming into sexual maturity (blooming) and sensuality, if that makes sense? For some reason I'm imagining something sorta sexy and intimate going on between Matt and DC after it's over almost as a natural matter of course, or even in a ritualistic way of sorts, but that's probably just my dirty mind + wishful thinking and a bit of kinkiness thrown in for good measure, and I'm way off. But I kind sorta really hope I'm not that much of a way off. :D
I'm also really looking forward to how the DC's role and responsibility change when Matt ascends to the throne. Like, I'm unreasonably excited to see where you allow us to go with this, and how the little games between them continue to transpire as things get more serious. I'm also really interested to see the DC's squire, and maybe some interesting chances for jealousy from Matt, simply because DC is spending the time training their squire that they'd otherwise spend with Matt, and Matt being a bit of an un-kingly pout-y brat cos he's just that possessive. And of course DC being equally possessive when nobles start to get too demanding of Matt's time. It's just cute to read. :D
Anyway, that's enough for now (if you even made it this far lol). I wanted to finish by saying that I really do hope things are going a little better for you and are less hectic since you posted this update. Please don't force yourself to work on LtGBtK if you're not in the right headspace or place for it, and don't stress about getting things out on time, either - we can wait, your health and well-being always takes priority.
All the best, Ligia! I hope 2022 decides to get it's shit together and start treating you better, and whenever you're inspired and the time is right, that LtGBTK graces us with more of it's goodness. *hugs!* :)