One of the most important fixes I made was to speed up the frame rate a bit. Up until a few weeks ago, in busy scenes, in forests for example with rain and headlights, the frame rate was dropping down to 20FPS. This was unacceptable and I spent a lot of time rewriting and optimising my game loop to very little effect. I eventually fixed it ny replacing my multi-purpose blit routine with two specific blit routines for specific purposes. One of these is twice as fast as the old routine and is used for most of the sprites I move around, so performance has been boosted greatly and I'm getting the steady 30fps I'm aiming for.
I also created a custom vector font class which I'm currently using to display the randomly generated base names. Base names have a prefix and a suffix, the suffix being common place name endings like "Ford" or "Ton". This gives about 2000 combinations of fairly convincing sounding names.
Next on the agenda is the crafting system and NPC AI.