Well hello there! You happened to arrive at a good time. We just finished cooking up a fresh batch of bread, so pull up a chair and warm your buns at our fire while we catch up.

Here at Castle PixelCount, our little team has been busy creating new goodies for you to sink your teeth into. Neal, architect of our grand engine, has spent the last number of weeks steadfastly adding a new ownable business in Quill: the Goods Store. This may seem like a simple addition on the surface, but there's a surprising amount of new systems going on underneath. So prop your feet up, nibble on some bread, and we'll tell you all about it.

Making Cents of Things

Running your own business is one of the core components that make up Kynseed, but there's a lot more to it than just buying a shop to own. It's being able to run different kinds of businesses and to run them the way you want to. The Blacksmith shop, from a couple updates ago, was our first step in laying that initial groundwork. As of this update, that now includes the Goods Store!

While that sounds straightforward enough, adding the Goods Store has actually had a cumulative effect on many other areas of the game. There's new systems in place for managing staff, gaining shop reputation, leveling up employee skills, ensuring NPC owned stores follow the same rules as player owned stores, and so on. Almost all of these new systems extend to the Blacksmith shop and will, in future updates, also extend to the Apothecary and Tavern.

There's far too many changes to list here, so for a comprehensive look at this hefty update feel free to take a gander at the full changelog or simply read on for an overview. The team's been working on all this nonstop, much like our pie shop which almost never closes - it's 22/7.

We're Into Role-Play

One of the fun things about the Goods Store is the role-play opportunities it affords. Depending on what types of items you choose to sell, you can effectively run any kind of store you like. You could run a general store by selling a broad variety of items. Or run a farming store by selling tools and seed. Or, a personal favourite of the team, run a bakery by selling homemade pies and bread. We even tried opening up a gassy apple store, but we couldn't keep up with the high cost of inflation.

Though there's a lot more to running the Goods Store than simply choosing which items to sell. There's prices to set, staff to manage, and rep to gain. Since the game's development is constantly evolving, we don't have a formal Goods Store tutorial in place yet, but upon purchasing the store you'll be given a Handbook which goes over most of what you'll need to know. While in the ledger, you can also press F1 or click the left thumbstick to bring up a handy info panel detailing what everything does.

Check out the highlights below for a quick crash course on how it all works as well as an overview of what the update contains.

Buying the Goods Store
  • Use the ledger to see how much the shop costs and, if you wish, to buy it
  • Upon purchase, you'll inherit the shop's inventory
  • Interact with the sign outside to open and close your shop
  • The store will automatically close if you leave the region without any hired staff

Placing Items
  • Place items for purchase and set their price
  • Customers may buy overpriced items, but they'll be unhappy about it (which will negatively impact your store Rep)
  • Watch your customer's comments for guidance

  • To serve customers, stand behind the counter and interact
  • Customers won't wait around forever and will leave in a huff if ignored
  • Some customers may want to haggle over the price
  • When haggling, the barter wheel will appear - stop the pointer in the green to eke out some extra Brass with no negative effect on Rep

Managing Staff
  • Interact with the Ledger to manage staff (and many other shop matters)
  • Locals will be available for hire, each one with unique attributes
  • Overworked employees lose stamina, which negatively affects their stats - give them breaks or gift them food to keep stamina high
  • Workers have individual happiness levels which are affected by their pay, stamina, and friendship level
  • An unhappy worker will be more discourteous to customers, negatively affecting Rep
  • Workers gain experience and over time will level up to improve their stats

Earning Rep
  • You'll gain Rep whenever a customer is pleased with service and price
  • Rep will increase in your shop's region and will grant a shop bonus at higher levels
  • Gaining higher Rep levels in one region will help spread word of your shop to other regions across the land
  • When that happens, customers from other regions will travel all the way just to visit your shop
  • As Rep grows, customers will be willing to pay higher and higher prices
  • (The Reputation system is still Work-In-Progress and will likely change to a more player customisable system in a future update)

Other Bits
  • All balancing is still very much work-in-progress, ranging from the price to own stores to the overall economy in general
  • Many of the Goods Store updates extend to Blacksmith ownership as well
    • You can now order ore from the Blacksmith
    • You can also hire a second Blacksmith worker to do the actual crafting
  • The Goods Store and Blacksmith Shop are now available for purchase in Poppyhill (with their own music variations as well)
  • Ledger improvements for additional sections (such as the Accounts tab to track recent transactions)
  • New noticeboard added to Candlewych
    • Currently first pass, but will be fleshed out in future updates
    • For now, it serves as a reminder of events that happen in the region
  • Goods market and chicken racing now available in Festfield
  • Various minor UX tweaks with options screen, XYB slot assignment, calendar, mailbox gamepad controls, money notification, and SFX for various shop screens
  • For a complete look at all changes, check out the full changelog

This is one of the meatier updates we've done, with a fair number of new things both on the surface and under. A hearty thanks to all of you playing these updates as we release them and an extra special thanks to those who give us feedback. Of course there's still further to go before all the core components of the game are in place, but this update puts a significant dent in the business ownership side of things.

That said, one of the big pieces of the Kynseed pie still to come is relationships and aging. So once this update's dust settles, we'll begin work next week on our next major update: "Growing Up & Going Out". This is the one many of you have been anxiously awaiting. It'll include player aging to the adult phase, romantic relationships (courting, marriage, and moving in together), as well as a brand new region called Loverwood.

We can't wait to get started on it and, as usual, we'll be chronicling our progress daily around the community and weekly in The PixelCount Post. We'll also soon be announcing the next batch of updates ahead on our roadmap, as the "Growing Up & Going Out" update is the last major one listed at the moment.

All that in the weeks ahead - same bat time, same bat channel. (The PixelCount bat, of course.)


Steam | Discord | GOG | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Forums