Sorry for the delayed response.
The thing is, with Ep. 2 we held off on making the the castles, towns, tutorials and other story-related stuff until after the worlds and general plot of the game were fleshed out so that some castles could be built around certain scenarios and we could thus ensure the game would have a more cohesive story overall. Assuming we continue with that practice for the other episodes, we should have a slight
bit of leeway to plan out rough, high-level story elements without regulating the rest of the games' levels for narrative stuff.
the characters be captured
is probably pushing it, but I imagine it's something that could be set up through the final level and cutscenes of Ep. 3 and resolved before the player has reached W1 in Ep. 4. The part that's most widely agreed upon by the chat is specifically
Pal = the Artist
, which should theoretically have even less of an impact on regular levels.
Even so, there is always the chance something in a self-contained level could conflict with pre-planned plot points, and in such an event the level should generally take priority; the story should change to accommodate the level, not vice-versa (except arguably in cases where the level creator is specifically trying to impose their own canon and force the story in a certain direction). Most of all, you make a very
good point in that it's not fair to the people who wait patiently to offer their input for others to discuss ideas and get excited about them in a relatively private channel. You're right to be upset about that.
For the sake of transparency I'm going to post more details and chatlogs about the
stuff and some other ideas we've been half-jokingly bouncing around on Skype in the story thread. We don't expect them to be taken as definitive canon, only possible options we can revisit when it comes time for Ep. 3's development.