From the creators of Punch Club comes Graveyard Keeper, the most inaccurate medieval cemetery management sim of all time.
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March 1

#4 Dev diary - Crafting and trading

Hi, everyone!
A week later than planned, we got to the fourth entry of our Developer diaries. As I promised, today I’m going to tell you about the game craft system and trade.

Crafting is one of the most important part of our game. After technologies, of course: first you explore beekeeping, make a hive, and then you get honey. Let's assume it’s all done. So what’s then? There are two big groups of game objects.

The last time you didn’t like our technology tree interface, so we’ve redone it. I think it’s better now.

The first group consists of game objects that you can use only once at the moment. Cut down a tree, pick up a flower, dig a grave and so on. These actions require player’s energy and they also take some time. Some of them can be done without any help, but some involve a special tool that will eventually wear out. The majority of these items are set carefully by the game developers beforehand.

The second group of game objects are “workbenches” as we call them in our team. This grouping is arbitrary. It includes stuff of different kind, ranging from a stove to a garden bed. Even a corpse may be a workbench, but I didn’t tell you that… What all these game objects have in common is that you can do something at them.

Keepers favorite dishes.

So what you can do with them? For some objects there's a list of crafts, for others a craft determines automatically based on an item picked from the inventory. For example, if you want to set the atmosphere for praying, you can burn incense. For that purpose you should just pick an item you need from the list of the highlighted items in the interface.

You need to keep your sword sharp!

Towards the end of the game items of higher level will have such an indicator as quality. It will be displayed as stars - bronze, silver or gold. So at this stage it’s not only quantity that is essential, it’s also quality and perks available for a player. Luck is also important, obviously.

This is a WIP screen. So no scrolls from sticks.

You can also practice alchemy, by the way. Benches in the alchemy laboratory have their own features, and follow general principles of engagement with workbenches at the same time. Yet I won't tell you that, cause I don’t want to spoil.

The majority of “workbenches” available in the game is to be built first. There are special sites for construction. The majority of these sites are not available for a player at the beginning. You can buy a site or unlock one by completing some quests.
Every construction site is designed for a certain type of construction. Sometimes it’s impossible to have all the necessary objects in the same site, and the construction of a workbench should be postponed till you save up enough money to expand it.

Building mode.

All these crafts are necessary for the two most important things. The first of them is clearly to make your graveyard great. Another is to get as much money as possible, money is a graveyard keeper’s best friend, you know! It is the sellers who help you with making money. There are a lot of them in the village. Each seller specializes in a particular kind of product. So you can buy nails from the blacksmith and a mug of fresh beer from the tavern owner.

Trade in Graveyard Keeper is a serious business. At the beginning of the game every seller has an access only to basic products of their type. Cash is limited. Sellers will develop just like you getting profit from trade, obviously. You sell wood planks for a local carpenter for 2 silver pieces for each, and after a while he sells to them to locals for 3. Doing so, a seller saves up cash enough to buy high-level items that at the end of the day you buy from him/her. And his/her increased cash can eventually go right into your pocket.

New trading menu

The more you trade with a certain character, the quicker he/she levels up. Selling and buying things from a character helps him/her to evolve and become richer. Of course, sellers won’t get money only from you. Yet how much they get depends on the number of city dwellers that come to visit the village. The reason for them to do so is because the village is on the way to your church. So the more popular your church and your graveyard are, the better it is for local businesses. You can also increase profits from the village by giving a sermon about how important small businesses are. After that a whole week till next sermon the village sellers get additional income.

In the end of the game one can trade through a merchant from the city wholesale. Your knowledge of theology will definitely help you here. But that’s another story and another game mechanic.

All the things described above is already done and now is being tested and adjusted carefully. So don’t worry we won’t put off the release to make all the things I’ve told you about. I think that’s all for today. If you have something you want me to talk about next time- leave a comment below. Or at least praise the work of our artists - it makes them draw better.

Don't forget to follow our game! Click that FOLLOW button on the Steam page!
Nikita Kulaga - Co-founder of Lazy Bear Games

Studio Twitter

22 comments Read more

February 12

#3 Dev diary - Game mechanics

Hi everyone!
The last time I wrote that this entry would be dedicated to the plot and game mechanics. I’m sorry I have to upset you here. They forbade me to talk about the plot. Yet I'll try to make it up to you describing carefully our game mechanics.

Let’s start then. As I mentioned before there are a lot of characters that a player should interact with. Every character has certain relationships with a graveyard keeper. Some characters are friendly to a new graveyard keeper in the first place. Some should be won over by doing what they want you to do or being eloquent or - like the old days - bribing. The better relationship with a character you have - the more useful he or she is for you.

6 key characters can be especially useful for you. They appear in the village or the graveyard surroundings only one time a week, each on an assigned day. So you should plan everything ahead, at least a week in advance.

Dialog with local blacksmith.

There is a lot of work for a graveyard keeper. The most important is to maintain the graveyard and bury new corpses. You get money for every buried body. So at the beginning it is the main source of profit, kind of your regular income.

In thanks for graveyard's reconstruction local Archbishop must ordain you and explain to you the basics of the local religion. Very old and intricate religion, built on the fear of the Underworld. So now you’re not only responsible for your graveyard, but also for the local church and its dungeons. One time a week you can preach, and if your speech is inspirational, you’ll have a positive effect for the whole week.

How to bury your first corpse.

The maintenance of such a big household is resource intensive. Either you run out of headstones or of candles. All basic resources you can certainly buy in the village, some - get from corpses. Yet at first the graveyard household makes little money, and locals are having good health. So you have to deal with woodworking, stone carving, winemaking and farming. All in all, there’s nothing impossible for a graveyard keeper!

Trading with locals.

At the beginning of the game this is definitely not like that. Step by step you discover new technologies that provide access to recipes and help you to get new resources. Every technology is equal to a certain number of technology points of a particular color. There are three colors of technology points.
  • Red - shows player’s ability to do something manually, his/her practical skills
  • Green - knowledge of the world around and the purposes of things
  • Blue - knowledge of the spiritual dimension of the world
Every game activity gives you some points. Cut down a tree - here are green and red points. Write a new sermon on how useful church donations are - blue blobs are already headed to the indicator.
Following player every day routine, you get enough knowledge to open elementary technologies of every color. But in order to learn advanced technologies one should do special research, study alchemy or deep down for knowledge in dungeons.


At the end of the day, you will be able to construct all the production chains necessary to create a ghost free graveyard.

We tried to balance the game in such a way that to finish storyline of the game it’s not necessary to master all the technologies. High level of several related fields are sufficient. The majority of what you can do by yourself, you can get for money or for faith (light spiritual energy). And if at the beginning of the game money are of greater importance, towards the end faith will become a priority issue.

We made faith in the form of items in inventory, so if you get killed in a dungeon, you are likely to lose a part of your faith.

Evening mass.

How to get money, I think, is obvious, there are a lot of ways to do that. As for faith, everything here is more complicated. The main source of your faith is your preaching. The better decorated the church interior is, the more beautiful stained glasses are, the more decent incense you have, the more faith is generated by a congregation. Faith is extremely important for more sophisticated crafts, where ingredients and skills are not as important as a fair amount of inspiration.

Now I should tell you about the game craft system. But then, I’m afraid, the entry is going to be too big. So crafts are for the next week and I’m going to dedicate them the whole entry of the diaries.

Thank you for your time! See you next week!

Don't forget to follow our game! Click that FOLLOW button on the Steam page!
Nikita Kulaga - Co-founder of Lazy Bear Games

Studio Twitter

22 comments Read more

About This Game

Graveyard Keeper is the most inaccurate medieval cemetery management sim of the year. Build & manage your own graveyard while finding shortcuts to cut costs, expand into entertainment with witch-burning festivals, and scare nearby villagers into attending church. This is a game of capitalism and doing whatever it takes to build a thriving business.

  • Face ethical dilemmas. Do you really want to spend money on that proper hotdog meat for the festival when you have so many resources lying around?
  • Gather valuable resources & craft new items. Expand your Graveyard into a thriving business, go ahead and gather valuable resources scattered in the surrounding areas, and explore what this land has to offer.
  • Make business alliances. These dead bodies don't need all that blood, do they? Why not sell it to someone who can put it to good use. Same for body parts. Hey, it's being efficient with recycling!
  • Explore mysterious dungeons. No medieval game would be complete without these. Take a trip into the unknown and find useful new ingredients which may or may not poison a whole bunch of nearby villagers. Capitalism.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: 1 GHz and up
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • OS: Lion (10.7)
    • Processor: 1 GHz and up
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04
    • Processor: 1 GHz and up
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
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