Quite a few questions about the Abbey's inhabitants' QoL this week! We are happy that you noticed their smiles and red noses, and really excited that you are keen on keeping them that way! But how does it all really work?
Read on as we explain the Monks' work/play system in Ale Abbey, discuss the ways that predominantly affect their Satisfaction levels, and give you a small primer on how rooms and their interiors will affect their overall quality of life in the busy Monastery!
As for our "do try this at home" Homebrewing advice for this week, a peek at how'd you start with brewing a boozy beer (higher alcohol %).
-- All the Monks in the Abbey are so happy! What's keeping them so energetic and full of joy?
Oh, yeah, the nerve-racking experience of brewing ale in the open country, in between mountain tops... Can you blame them!?
In all honesty, we seriously thought about their life quality and we also wanted to stay focused on the fact that a Monastery, albeit imaginary in Ale Abbey, is not just a place of non-stop work, but also a place for meditation and relaxation. Although their "shifts" start at 5 AM and end at 9 PM, the Monks and Nuns will only work for a limited amount of hours within that time frame. Just like working in real life, too little (less than 4 hours) or too much (more than 10 hours) will make them either unfulfilled or utterly crashed. And this would subsequently negatively affect other aspects of their lives in the Abbey. Find a balance that guarantees good progress and also gives them the time to chat with other monks, wander in the garden, meditate in the Meditation Cells, etc. and your Abbey will be bustling with joy!
-- Will there be any other ways to control Monk/Nun Satisfaction?
The Abbey's satisfaction can be increased in many ways. The two main ways would be to a) assure the Monks and Nuns have a great place to work and b) they always have a supply of tasty ales to... you know, experience! Besides that, other ways to increase overall satisfaction in the Abbey are tied to good performance on general tasks and quests given by the area's Lord, accomplishing good deeds, ruminating in Meditation Cells, having free time, decorating the surroundings, etc.
And here's a twist; we are purposefully designing Ale Abbey to not directly punish for the opposite. We're not really fans of negative loops.
-- Will rooms, in general, have an effect on the Monks/Nuns using them?
That's a question that would take multiple paragraphs to answer really. In short, yes, the quality of your monastery's interior (lights, decor, etc) will impact the mood of its residents. We are actually in the process of designing how the position of the rooms and distances between them also impact the quality of life and the time wasted moving from one to another.
-- Can you get a higher than normal alcoholic content in Homebrew ales?
Setting the record straight for Yannis who's reluctant to brew anything above 9%, of course, you can. You'd only have to start with a higher gravity wort (that mostly implies you will be able to make less beer than usual with your tools) and make sure you have a high attenuation yeast (80%+). These two would set you on the right path to brewing a strong ale. Use some sugar if you want to push the ABV (keyword: some, you don't want to impact the flavor and body too much), and make sure you find a good balance in your bill, because nobody likes a boozy ale that is not supported by complexity and flavor.
Keep in mind, most strong ales will need to mature in a bottle a lot longer to achieve their best quality.
Thanks for your time and see you all next Friday!
-- Hammer & Ravens
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