Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Whim Independent Studios - Development Log #20

Hey guys, back with the 20th development log. I have linked to this for our Indiegogo backers to be kept in the loop about the progress on Selatria as well. We've been very busy in the studio, and I've wanted to keep everyone posted about the projects we're working on and how close or far we are to completion.


Chapter 2 is now available for testing. Above are the five characters you'll get to play in the chapter. Mage, Melanie, Luis, Number 016, and Gobby. I've provided the link to play below. Take a look at some screenshots and a listen to some new themes you'll hear in Chapter 2!

Take a look at Chapter 2 Game Development Philosophy below for more information!

July round of casting calls:

Yesterday, we sent out our cast list emails for those who have gotten chosen for the new casting roles for Selatria. There were a ton of auditions, but we carefully cut down to who we thought would be a best fit for the role of the game.

As a Producer, I don't like to turn people down for a role, and we had a lot of very good auditions, I really hope that the auditionees that we didn't choose for the role come back and audition for our last casting call before the launch of the game. Our final casting call will be hopefully before the end of the year and the game is planned to be released sometime early next year.

Here is our casting call for the roles from July's audition casting call.

Calculon000 - Announcer
Shegorath19 - Captain Whatshisface
Miguel Moran - Dakk'rian Emperor
Alex Beckham - Faylien Capitol Guard
Katrice349 - Gobriella
A Theatrical Song Bird - Kitty Girl
xXSil3ntMavenXx - Resident
Holly Lindin - Susie
Alex Melius - Waltear

Regarding the roles for Gongoren, Roussell, Saewo, and Montegue, we feel that we didn't do an accurate job in explaining who the character is, and we intend to revise the lines and description of the character and have auditions for that before the end of the year in the final casting call I mentioned earlier.

Chapter 2 Game Development Philosophy:

We have recently wrapped up the base development for Chapter 2 of Selatria. It took about 3-4 hours to play through the chapter when we tested it in the studio. However, we'd like an objective analysis from testers to determine whether or not the content we've built for the chapter is too difficult or not. 

For Chapter 1, our philosophy in designing the game was to reel in people who are new to role-playing games, and holding their hand through the game and battle mechanics. We introduce them to the team attack system and reserved points and let them start the adventure. We end it with a boss that's somewhat moderate in difficulty.

For Chapter 2, however, we expect that the player has learned how to play at this point and understands the basic rules of how the game is played. The difficulty is ramped up greatly and the puzzles for getting through the dungeons test your memory and problem solving skills. However, some of us in the team are unsure of whether or not we made the puzzles and game too challenging. For this reason, we've made an alpha version of Chapter 2 available to play.

One other thing I'd probably like to mention. We're currently working on writing a new introduction to the game introducing new characters that took part in the initial conflict. As this was not mentioned in the original opening lines, it might seem a bit... off? I suppose. The new opening battle sequence is in, but we have new dialogue planned out to introduce the new characters in the opening better than what we have now.

Saved data accumulated in this build can not be carried over to the final version, and elements such as the art, music and voices are incomplete in this phase. Our primary focus is to determine whether or not the content is playable, a challenge ---yet doable, and not buggy.

You can download the build here. Please read the disclaimer!


Game Development Progress:

ANTics is nearing completion! We will be releasing soon for Google Play for 99 cents and then launching a Kickstarter to expand development of the game for an expansion. (See: Below)

 Here is an animation of our first boss of ANTics, the mischievous ant queen! By: Paul Diggs

Here are some in-development screenshots of the game. Gerren did an incredible job handling the programming of the game, we will have another development video to show as well as a PR media package for the game ready when the game is ready to be released.

Upcoming Kickstarter Campaign:

We're going to take a new direction in the philosophy of a kickstarter campaign for ANTics. Instead of doing a Kickstarter campaign to fund the development of a project, we would like to try a Kickstarter to expand the game to our original vision.

ANTics is almost complete and ready to distribute, but in order to release the game, we had to omit things we would have liked to appear in the game. These include

-More Boss Ideas/Models
-More CG sequences and more fluid animations
-Voice Acting for the Bosses
-More Powerups
-Survival Mode/Endless Mode
-More awesome orchestrated tunes for the game

However, the time to develop these elements would delay the game further and we would like to see if players would like the game we have set to develop. If we can get the support and players like what we have to bring to the table, we would love to introduce these elements into our game.

When we release ANTics in the next few weeks, we're hoping to release a free demo as well, which we will include when you check out the page. We will also put the demo for free on our upcoming Kickstarter page. Backers for the expansion of ANTics will also get our current version of the game that we have included with their backing.

I have noticed that game creation Kickstarter campaigns are far more successful when they actually have a demo or playable section ready when the campaign is launched. It's not so much about "What we want to do", but to build confidence, those interested in backing the project want to see what they have already.


Anyhow, expect to see a retail version of Selatria to hit in early 2014, and ANTics to go live for download on your mobile phones in October.

I think that's about it for this development log. Until next time!

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