As a hired mercenary, Curtis prefers to keep to himself, and generally refrains from seeking out opportunities to interact with the rest of the party. He’ll speak when spoken to, and isn’t acerbic or confrontational, but it doesn’t take much to irritate him, and once he’s annoyed, he has no compunctions about bluntly telling off would-be conversation partners.
He gives the impression of a man who’ll take nearly any job, as long as it pays, and perhaps that’s all there is to him: he refrains from sharing anything about himself if he can avoid it. But trying to connect with him isn’t entirely fruitless, and maybe, just maybe, he’ll eventually decide to open up to a select few companions who he finds some commonality or resonance with.
Curtis prefers to strike out on his own, positioning himself apart from the party so that he can carry out his work as an archer without distractions. Curtis deals extra damage if he is not adjacent to multiple allies, and Opportune Shot, one of his Combat Arts, deals bonus damage to enemies flanked by his allies. Curtis also gains bonuses to his Strength, Speed, and Skill after certain turn intervals, helping him keep up his momentum to continue longer battles, or give him one last boost to his killing power to wrap up a shorter fight.
Curtis is frail, however, and ill-suited to the front lines. Safe and careful positioning is key to his success, but if his sniping spots are well-planned and he’s defended, he can obliterate foes from distances that they can’t counterattack from.
His loner playstyle also means that he’s a particularly good choice for making use of terrain-based advantages, especially Watchtowers, which can grant him extra damage, range, and accuracy.
Thieves, Blades, and other classes with the “Lockpick” skill, fall under the umbrella category of “Rogues.” Among other benefits related to this type of class such as opening doors and chests for free, Rogues have access to unique Rogue Tools. These consumables primarily serve to aid a unit’s utility or mobility, making Rogue classes excellent for completing time-sensitive objectives, traveling across the map, or maneuvering themselves into position
Here are a few example of Rogue Tools:
Smoke Bomb: Allows the user to teleport three tiles in any direction, ignoring obstructive terrain.
Haste Capsule: Grants the user one extra Movement for five turns.
Long Lockpick: Allows the user to open chests and doors from up to five tiles away, rather than requiring them to be adjacent to the chest or door, which is useful for avoiding traps and ambushes, or simply to loot with haste.
Stimpack: Grants the user +3 to all stats for three turns, every time they enter combat during that period, they take an additional six damage when combat ends.
These are just a few of the Rogue Tools that will be available for units of the appropriate classes. Clever use of them will greatly expand the flexibility with which certain units can traverse the battlefield and tackle side-objectives, rewarding creative players who draw upon all the resources at their disposal.
The concept of permanent death for playable characters—Permadeath—is a familiar one to players who have experience with SRPGs. However, rather than opting for a traditional always-active Permadeath system, Gales of Nayeli explores Permadeath differently through a mechanic dubbed “Grievous Wounds” and Permadeath Maps.
Firstly, it is important to clarify that there are a very small number of units whose defeat will trigger a Game Over under any circumstances. These “essential” units are exempt from the Grievous Wounds mechanics. When a Game Over is triggered, you may choose to either restart the battle, reload from a save prior to the battle, or reload from a save partway through the battle, as you can choose to save at the start of any of your turns.
For all other units, under normal conditions, being brought to zero HP does not permanently kill them. Instead, they are forced to retreat from battle, no longer being available for the rest of that fight, and will have a Grievous Wound inflicted upon them. Units with a Grievous Wound have access to all of their usual abilities: however, they have a semi-permanent debuff placed upon them afterwards that persists between maps and chapters. This debuff, the aforementioned Grievous Wound, reduces their Avoid and defenses, making them more vulnerable to being hit and taking more damage upon being hit. Grievous Wounds cannot be healed with healing staves or items, for only special Bandage consumables can heal a Grievous Wound, dispelling the debuff from a single afflicted unit.
If a unit who is suffering from the effects of a Grievous Wound is brought to zero HP a second time, a Game Over will trigger, forcing you to reload a previous save file. However, an accessibility setting allows to “Disable Game Over upon subsequent injury”. This setting can be toggled at any point during a playthrough independently of your difficulty level.
The main goal of the Grievous Wounds system is to find an interesting middle ground between punishing mistakes while still encouraging players to play through them. Now, speaking of which…
In the vast majority of scenarios, the aforementioned rules will apply. However, there are specific battles where all units (other than “essential”) who are brought to zero HP will suffer a permanent death. If the map objective was to Escape, this will also apply to any playable unit who has not escaped in time.
Should this happen, the slain unit is permanently dead and is unable to participate in battle any further. The items they were currently carrying, however, will be sent to the convoy.
These will generally be maps that are critical to the progression of the story, such as particularly climactic confrontations or unusual battle circumstances where retreat would be impossible. All maps where this can occur will be preceded by a notification that warns of the possibility that units can permanently perish in the coming battle. If a unit does die under these circumstances, no Game Over is triggered, but you can always elect to reload an earlier save manually if you desire to save them.
You are also free to continue playing on even if a unit is permanently slain. In addition to the gameplay consequences of having fewer unit options or not being able to access certain unique abilities, there will also be alterations to the narrative that necessarily ensue. Dead characters will not be able to engage in conversations with other characters, but scenes featuring their friends and loved ones will reflect their absence. Some new cutscenes altogether will be available.
Playing through the game while accepting non-perfect outcomes can increase the stakes and heighten the drama, regardless of your level of expertise with SRPGs. On the other hand, there is nothing stopping you from reloading to ensure that all your units survive should mistakes or poor luck result in an untimely demise. Whichever way you choose to experience Gale of Nayeli is valid and accounted for: the important thing to keep in mind is that you enjoy yourself!
The battlefields in Gales of Nayeli are much more than simple grids with units on them. A wide variety of terrain, each with various beneficial or harmful effects, can be found throughout the game, and knowing how to position units and limit the positioning opportunities of enemies is a crucial element to both longer-term strategy and immediate tactical decisions. Here are some examples of a few types of terrain and its various uses in battle.
Most types of Forest tiles, as well as terrain elements that play a similar role in non-forest biomes, give assorted defensive bonuses to the units who occupy them, but some possess more unique properties. Gale Leaves are one such tile: these grant a unit 2 extra movement when their next turn starts if they end their turn on a Gale Leaves tile, giving the beneficiary a drastic boost in mobility to assist in flanking opportunities or cross-map traversal. However, keep in mind that enemies can benefit from this as well, so keep track of where Gale Leaves are on the map to avoid unpleasant surprises!
There are a number of contexts where certain tiles pose risks to everyone involved, though intrepid tacticians can do their best to take advantage of the opportunities these provide to them.
One such sort of tile includes Desert tiles, which reduces the Fire Defense and Avoid of most units who end their turn on it…but only during the day, because at night, instead of increased vulnerability to Fire, units suffer penalties to Ice Defense instead! After all, deserts are sweltering hot during the day, but numbingly cold once the sun goes down. Clever players can take advantage of these increased elemental weaknesses to deal extra damage with the appropriate elemental attacks, but be wary that enemies will be likely to try employing the very same tactics as well!
Another such tile type is Ice, which liberally takes up space on battlefields in cold or polar regions. Ice makes for great makeshift bridges over otherwise-impassable bodies of water…but, as anyone who has tried to ski can attest, is hardly a stable surface to stand on, much less fight atop of. Units suffer from reduced Avoid when battling on Ice, and this penalty is even more crippling for armored units. Luring enemies onto Ice can make them less likely to dodge your attacks, but take care to not put your units in compromising positions when trying to do so!
Some terrain grant specific bonuses to some units! One such terrain type is the Watch Tower, which grants specific bonuses in battle for Archers and Mages, but require one action to mount. Taking control of Watch Towers in scenarios where enemies are headed your way is key to making your long range units shine in battle.
Finally, there are also traps, switches and other mechanical contraptions which enable various shortcuts or tactical advantages. Experiment with your surroundings to find alternate paths to victory. These are just a small selection of some of the terrain characteristics that pepper the battlefields all across Gales of Nayeli. Whether they’re damage-dealing or debuffing traps, runes that boost elemental damage, or teleportation devices that send units clear across the map, taking careful note of the opportunities afforded to you by the environment to bolster your allies or cripple your enemies will be key to securing victory, especially since enemies will be just as keen to exploit them as you are!
Diego is the son of wealthy merchants, who made their fortune ferrying goods from Port Aqaban in the north of Norica through Mariner’s Bay, back to Lumica. Their shrewd businessmanship, pragmatic investments, and talent for making connections ensured that they had access to profitable travel corridors extending westward across all of Lumica. As a young boy, Diego would accompany his family on their many voyages, becoming intimately familiar with the minutiae of aquatic travel and shipping lanes.
However, trading routes always attract opportunists looking to prey upon merchants, and though his family always did its utmost to navigate the seas safely, the day eventually came when they were unable to avoid attention. Pirates, a regrettably common threat to any intrepid ferrier of goods, attacked them in the strait separating the peninsula cradling Mariner’s Bay from the archipelago to its east, Corsair’s Mishap. Diego’s parents did not survive the encounter, and though Diego escaped into the sea, he was left for dead, fully expecting to drown beneath the waves that had so often carried his ship to safety.
Fate had another agenda in mind for him, however. Another band of buccaneers found him adrift and brought him aboard, and, bereft of other options, Diego agreed to join their crew, though he took no delight in becoming one of the very same threats that had plagued his journeys over the sea, and that had murdered his parents.
Since that day, Diego has traveled the breadth of seas all across Iuven, bouncing from one pirate crew to another and deftly avoiding catastrophe by cutting his losses when fortune turns against his current band.
Diego is a fast, dextrous axe-wielder whose high Skill gives him excellent accuracy and frequent critical hits. He also can Mark enemies using his personal spyglass, temporarily debuffing their Defense and Avoid and increasing the chance that he or allies will land critical hits on them. However, he is not limited to close-quarters combat: not only does he have a particular affinity for firearms, able to employ them with deadly precision, but his Axe Throw combat art allows him to use his melee weapon to deal damage at range.
Being an experienced lookout and pirate, Diego has the unique ability to access Watchtowers to take advantage of their benefits to accuracy, damage, and range without using his action, enabling him to act or attack on the same turn that he climbs them. This gives him more freedom-of-movement than other units, and helps him capitalize on new positioning opportunities as soon as they arise.
Statistics in Gales of Nayeli are fairly straightforward, and should be familiar to anyone who has played SRPGs, or RPGs in general, before. However, in the interest of avoiding confusion, we’d like to take this time to go over some of the stats in the game and their effects, so that future blog posts discussing elements that involve stats, such as characters or items, are as clear as possible.
Statistics and Levels
The level cap for playable units is level 40: by the time the roster’s average levels have reached this point, the players will be nearing the end of the game. Since units gain experience proportional to the level difference between them and their defeated target—with bonus experience when defeating units higher level than yours, and significantly penalized experience when defeating units lower level than your own—the leveling curve should feel smooth and consistent throughout. A unit’s level does not reset when promoting or class changing in any way.
The stats are as follows:
HP: Health. If a unit’s HP reaches zero, they are injured or die, depending on the game mode and certain story events, and certain units reaching zero HP can result in an immediate game over.
Strength (STR): A unit’s physical power. The primary modifying stat for most Swords, Axes, Lances, Daggers, Bows, and Firearms, and the main stat that physical Combat Arts scale off of.
Magic (MAG): A unit’s magical prowess. The primary modifying stat for Elemental, Light and Dark magic damage, as well as magical Combat Arts. Magic also affects healing done with Staves.
Skill (SKL): A unit’s precision and dexterity. The primary stat determining Hit and Critical Hit Chance.
Speed (SPD): A unit’s agility and swiftness. The primary stat governing Avoid. If a unit has at least 3 more Speed than their target, they will deal a follow-up attack before combat ends.
Luck (LCK): A unit’s propensity for good fortune. The primary stat affecting Critical Avoid, and one which also affects Hit and Avoid.
Defense (DEF): A unit’s physical durability. The primary stat affecting the damage taken by physical attacks.
Resistance (RES): A unit’s magical durability. The primary stat determining damage taken by magical attacks.
All stats have a cap of 30, save for HP, which is capped at 60. Level-up gains are random, but each unit has different odds to increase each stat. The use of stat-boosting consumables and growth modifiers will give players some agency in any unit’s final stats, however.
Finally, here are a few stats that do not directly increase upon leveling-up, but are still noteworthy:
Movement (MOV): Determines the number of tiles on the battlefield that a unit can move in one turn. Affected by a unit’s promotion class or the unit’s unique abilities, and never increases as a consequence of leveling up.
Hit: An attack’s accuracy. An attack’s Hit is determined against the target’s Avoid.
Avoid: A unit’s ability to dodge attacks of any type.
Critical Hit Chance: The chance an attack will critically hit, dealing double damage. An attack’s Critical Hit Chance is measured against the target’s Critical Avoid, but only if the attack connects.
Critical Avoid: The chance a unit will not be critically hit if they are successfully struck. A unit’s Critical Avoid can go below zero through debuffs and grant additional Critical Hit Chance to their attacker.
This should help make any future blog posts discussing gameplay elements that involve knowing the role of different stats easier to understand. If you ever get lost in the stat terminology, just refer back to this page, and we’re certain your questions will be answered!
In Gales of Nayeli, many attacks deal elemental damage, adding an additional factor to your decision-making in combat. Not only are different foes—and different playable units—vulnerable and resistant to different types of elemental damage, but elemental damage attacks also carry unique intrinsic effects to differentiate themselves from each other. Thus, understanding elemental effects, and the elemental attacks at your disposal and that your enemies may use against you, is critical to planning and executing successful strategies over the course of the game.
Not all attacks that deal elemental damage are magical attacks: whether an attack that deals elemental damage will scale off of the user’s Strength or Magic will depend on the individual attack or weapon, which will also determine which of the foe’s defenses it will target. For example, a Wind-element Combat Art that deals physical damage will target the enemy’s Defense and Wind Resistance and scale off of the user’s Strength stat.
Elements also carry bonus effects that alter the properties of attacks that carry their element. For example, all Wind-element Combat Arts or attacks, no matter their origin, will have the bonus effect of dealing extra effective damage to targets who are in Flying classes. Most properties of elemental attacks apply automatically to weapons imbued with their respective element.
The list of elements and their bonuses are:
Fire: Fire elemental attacks automatically deal extra effective damage against foes vulnerable to it, such as Bugs. In return for having no other unique effects, Fire elemental attacks typically deal higher base damage compared to other elements.
Thunder: Thunder elemental attacks always strike twice consecutively before the foe is allowed to potentially counter, regardless of the Speed of either the attacker or the target.
Ice: Ice elemental attacks always reduce the user’s Defense and Resistance in combat, but also always enable follow-up attacks after the Counter round. This effect also applies to weapons such as Tomes that are normally unable to perform follow-up attacks.
Earth: Earth elemental damage targets the foe’s physical Defense and uses the user’s Strength to calculate damage. This includes Earth Elemental Tomes. Weapons imbued with Earth also increase the user’s Defense.
Wind: Wind elemental damage always deals extra effective damage against Flying-class targets.
Light: Light elemental attacks have a wide variety of enemy classes that they deal extra effect damage against, depending on the specific attack or weapon. Many Light elemental attacks also buff the user or nearby allies as a secondary effect.
Dark: Dark elemental attacks frequently inflict debuffs on the target and surrounding enemies, and have high base power relative to when they are accessible. However, most Dark elemental attacks or weapons also debuff the user or allies, or even deal damage to the user in return.
This is just a brief look at how elements play a large role in the combat of Gales of Nayeli. As we reveal more of the tools available to you, we hope that you’ll come to understand how you can use elemental damage and elemental effects to plan your strategies throughout the game!
Headstrong, scrappy, and determined, Tomoe has always given her all to everything she puts her mind to. When she had first arrived at the temple that would serve as her martials arts school, most of her peers and even some of her instructors could not quite see her potential.
Tomoe didn’t let their doubts stop her. Through perseverance, devoted training, and force of will, Tomoe made good on her potential and rose in the ranks of the temple’s acolytes, until none could deny her growing mastery. But when war engulfed the countryside, and her temple maintained its strict policy of political neutrality to spare itself the ire of the belligerent armies, Tomoe could not ignore that she had the power to save innocents in danger.
When she rushed off to help a neighboring village, fighting off the soldiers that had plundered it and guiding the survivors to safety, her temple was forced to banish their wayward student, who refused to apologize or make amends for violating their neutrality.
Now, traveling under a new name, Tomoe has vowed to never back down from her ideals, assisting anyone in need wherever she travels, always quick to face down the unrighteous who prey upon the innocent…particularly if they are strong enough for her to test herself against.
As an accomplished martial artist, Tomoe is one of the few characters able to use Fighting Gauntlets as weapons, as well as her bare fists. This means that she can regularly attack at least twice per round of combat.
Tomoe is especially adept at targeting specialized foes: her Kuzushi Combat Art deals extra damage proportionally to her target’s Strength stat, and her Tetsuzanko Combat Art has a higher Critical Hit Chance proportional to her target’s Resistance stat.
She can also activate her Flaming Fists, which boosts her Strength and Magic and adds fire elemental damage to all of her attacks for its duration. It also temporarily gives her access to her Flame Uppercut Combat Art, a ranged fire-element magic attack.
Relationships between characters are a core interactive component in Gales of Nayeli. Every party member is a distinct personality whose dynamic with their allies on an individual-to-individual basis can grow and change over the course of the game. As such, the progress for each relationship isn’t tracked by a letter or number, gated linearly on a path that can be applied rotely to every relationship: instead, as each relationship grows organically over the course of the game, they’re differentiated by unique, trackable labels that will vary depending on your action as a player.
Some relationships can only progress by triggering conversations during chapters, battles, or the base camp. Others are tied to specific steps in story progression, and may require choosing to advance characters on one of several mutually-exclusive relationship paths.
Thus, you will have to think carefully about how you advance relationships, and which ones you will prioritize. In one playthrough, the player might elect to focus on deepening Quidel and Nayeli’s attachment as longtime companions, exploring the nuances and foibles of their growing friendship over the course of the game. In another, the player could choose to explore how a potential romantic relationship between Quidel and Nayeli alters their dynamic, offering an opportunity to experience the complexities of a divergent relationship path. Choosing to advance relationships one way might affect how others are able to progress!
However, there are numerous in-game benefits to advancing relationships between characters. In the immediate action of battles, allies who share a close bond gain boosted combat stats when fighting near one another. Some character combos can even gain access to unique partnered combat arts if they fight together after growing close enough! Closely-bonded allies can gift each other items with tangible in-game effects and benefits, train together to learn and grow stronger in ways they could not alone, or even trigger unique Relationship Missions.
At certain stages of a relationship, triggering that relationship’s Base Conversation may lead to a Relationship Mission tied to that specific relationship label which must be completed in order to progress it. These missions are more closely tied to these specific characters, with their availability and characteristics dependent on the label of their relationship, and focusing on a smaller set of playable characters to put a greater emphasis on their growing closeness.
For instance, an attempt by two characters to use the quiet darkness of the deep forest to sneak away for a private, romantic moment might suddenly be cut short by an ambush, requiring you to guide the would-be lovebirds to safety! In another scenario, an acerbic-but-friendly rivalry between a different pair might escalate into a contest of strength that takes them well away from their initial competition into truly dangerous territory!
Not all Relationship Missions will be quite so risky to a pair’s life and limb, but every one will offer you the opportunity to get to know more about the personalities, relationship dynamic, and abilities of the starring characters.
Here’s an example of one of Gales of Nayeli’s relationship progressions between Unit A and Unit B, in graph form!
That wraps up the overview of Gales of Nayeli’s relationship system. We’re excited to see how you advance the bonds between each and every character, and test out different labels and paths for yourself!
During Gales of Nayeli’s development, three game design pillars guided our design decisions during development: Character Variety, Exploration, and offering a Customized Experience.
Strategy RPGs live and die by the quality of their playable rosters — that much is evident to us. As a result, a strong emphasis has been placed on making sure that each character feel different in-game in a way that reflects each of their individual personalities.
Every character has a unique set of classes, skills, and tools that interact in a variety of interesting ways.
Selecting the right members for your army isn’t always as simple as picking “the best” unit of each type. Every character provides unique combat bonuses or mobility options to other, compatible characters. By utilizing character’s specialized skills, and deploying units wisely, victory shall be yours!
A detailed approach has been taken to spark some life into Iuven through how we handle exploration in Gales of Nayeli.
During your travels, playable characters will share stories about their lives or dreams about their future. If you keep an eye out and pay special attention to these events, you may glean some insights on where future special events occur.
Here are some examples of possible events: visiting their home town after a long journey, taking in the sights at a landmark they’ve been meaning to see all their life, finding their old secret hideout they used to treasure as children, and more!
Each of these events have different perks and rewards that will also affect how these characters perform in the future.
This all culminates into the main goal of Gales of Nayeli: to provide you your own personalized adventure.
The characters you meet along the way, as well as how they grow throughout the story, will vary in each playthrough based on your choices, both on and off the battlefield.
You are not expected to trigger every unique interaction or find every secret in any single playthrough. Each playthrough is unique. Experiment and have fun!