Despite feeling my creativity sapped by work stress and lack of sleep, I'd had some ideas for Chapter 2 development and execution. This chapter was always going to be more heavily H&S - you're trying to pin down the head of the militia, a military leader surrounded by his men.
I liked the H&S segments in chapter 1 - breaking the pace nicely, was my intention. But I'm wary of Chapter 2 becoming less focussed on my intention - and losing some of my 'philosophy' behind it. So I've been working up ways to add in roleplay. Seich will have a lot more to say as his character develops, as will Contessa. I've also come up with ways to add more variety to how a stronghold is stormed. Traditional in RPGs it's a case of finidng a disused secret entrance and storming form the bottom up - but I'd like to build a bit more colour and originality into that.
That said, the combat when it happens needs to be fast, frenetic and furious - high drama. Personally, I don't like mods where fights that arent showdowns with villains or pushing the plot forward get too hard - you lose realism if you have to leave a house to rest, then go back in to finish killing off the guys you just attacked - you would be hunted down and slaughter whilst you rested. So when you storm a stronghold - you shouldn't expect to be able to rest up after each level ready to face a new one. But this is going to be difficult to pull off effectively.
Some commented on the linearity of Chapter 1 - thing is I'm loathe to add in side quests just for the hell of adding sidequests. and to me side quests don't make something non linear - they just add variety, which is different. And too much can get silly- there's only so much that can happen in one place. Also, why someone with the motivation and goals in Dark Avenger - distracitons shouldnt matter as much. But i'm hoping to offer the player different approaches to storming the stronghold that will get that variety in there.