A decision has been made - instead of focusing primarily on coding features the immediate goal is prototyping a starting area.
Obviously this is a very important thing to get right - it might actually be the most important area of the entire game since this is where players decide within the first 15 minutes if they want to keep playing the game or look somewhere else.
I thought about the games I've played in the past, and how they handled things. It's important that players are given a chance of action without too much tutoring - and especially without too much OOC, like a "Tutorial Island" would be - yuck.
Not wanting to start the player in a city I've decided to dump the player in a campground in the middle of a forest, with opportunities to find a few easy opponents before being introduced to the first "dungeon" - a small cave.
I haven't exactly made the cave yet... the trees and the grass kinda sucks, and the opponents are still those pesky skeletons, but at least it's a bit better than my first tech-demo area.
Basically the idea is to limit the immediate scope of the huge task this game is to a small "vertical slice" that will also serve well as a demo if I want to go for greenlight.