I've already started work on my new game beta, and and here's how it's going so far:
Good news: Have encountered no earthshattering, game crashing bugs, new game engine components that have been tested so far are stable.
Bad news: Pixel movement is possible and doesn't cause frameskipping issues anymore, but it's completely off the table due to graphical issues that are unresolvable at present. This is not a deal breaker, as it mostly just would have made for somewhat prettier event movement, but the standard system works more than well enough for my needs so this is just a nuisance at best. Overlay code seems functional, but still needs some stress testing, unknown if it will conflict with my new climate code since overlap maps aren't exactly factored into the stock climate behavior (not to mention the overlay map is never actually meant to be visited, it's layout is merely superimposed on the current map), and while I don't expect issues, it may complicate some external maps with bizarre graphical anomalies if there are any.
Notes: New portraits look nice, and so far all playable characters, Sir Mark Kern, and Tera have their own portraits as opposed to facesets, though I've retained facesets for the NPCs as a fallback, and the player characters still make use of their facesets for other reasons like in the player menus. Currently plan to just fix all existing scenes to use the new portraits and scripting, then go back and carve out a niche for the new features to fill since I need to take game balance into account. Class changing may be dummied out, as I'm concerned it may overcomplicate things and just be reserved for later games. I do want to give Mara a stealing skill like I originally planned from day one, have the code for it, hope I don't get weird issues like I did in the past. I'm using different scripting calls for that code, so this shouldn't be an issue, but time will tell.