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A Keyboard and the Truth

Steam Summer Sale

Posted by , 23 June 2016 - - - - - - · 625 views

Greetings all,
If you haven't checked out our games before now is a great time. Steam is hosting its annual Summer Sale and both of our games on Steam are 85% off! At just over $1 you can't beat it. Check them out if you like adventure and good times.
The Lost City of Malathedra
STATIC: Investigator Training




Update

Posted by , 15 June 2016 - - - - - - · 454 views

Dang, I can't keep a journal to save my life!

 

Well hopefully some folks are subscribed to our Facebook group, it details more regular, though less in-depth happenings.

 

So notably, end of May through June 16th I was away, a bit of business, and a lot of fun; trying to get in a few weeks of vacation.

 

Though I wasn't completely idle on gamedev during that period; I produced and submitted Morning's Wrath 1.4, Release Candidate (RC) 7

 

Hopefully someday our publisher will get that added to steam, it has some serious improvements over the current version (1.3) which has been the only release since roughly '06

 

Hopefully soon this version can be purchased standalone on our site, and we'll provide the update for free, for any past purchasers (just drop an email to raymond@edigames.com with full name and purchase details).

 

As for Revel, we've been working to get more systems implemented and 'draw' everything together, in hopes of a near term version update.

 

I've laid out an internal development schedule that is very aggressive, in hopes that it will really spur some action; I guess we'll see.




A bit more on change

Posted by , 07 March 2016 - - - - - - · 783 views

Let's start with a new screenshot, showing some of the 'human/male' graphics I did over the weekend; and the new 'name ribbons' for portraits.

 

Posted Image

 

Images aside, I wanted to formally touch upon why I've chosen this new graphical and gameplay style for Revel Immortal.

 

It can really be boiled down to content being too 'expensive' to create that is, too time consuming for the benefit; as well as several of the systems pertaining to that content being significantly flawed.

 

In late December we basically did a half-year evaluation of how much progress we made with content creation in the old system.

 

We found that the majority of our time was going to developing the isometric environments; and very specific systems and technical issues pertaining to that (sorting, occlusion, lighting, portals, interior dissolves, performance, etc.)

 

The result was, a lot of time spent and not a lot of content created; basically not getting much closer to people playing and enjoying Revel Immortal in its current form.

 

...and for all that time and effort, play-quality was not really exceptional; a number of systems (npc dialogue, equipment, quests) were quite good, but other things (isometric interactions, control scheme, combat, character size) were not very good at all.

 

To make matters worse, our progress should have had a significant jump-start, as we re-used practically all the environments from existing Morning's Wrath; in hind-sight this did give us a boost, but once we encountered the challenge of making new locations from scratch (notably the Garranshall marketplace) productivity was horrible, with an estimation of maps/locations taking months to potentially complete graphically and functionally.

 

In short things were not good; for a very key part of the game, it was too hard to author, and the results weren't very good.

 

Technical issues, limitations of HTML5 and 2D engines; all the usual suspects, depth sorting, behind wall occlusion, lighting; really limited our ability to solve these problems as well.

 

Naturally they could be solved; there are plenty of excellent 2D Isometric RPGs, but could we solve them? in reasonable time?

 

We rightly received harsh criticism for control aspects of Morning's Wrath, (and Malathedra, AND Static) and I saw that becoming a repeat issue, which I felt was not acceptable.

 

 

All of this evidence forced me to take a really hard look at what we've been doing, and how we can change things to get things moving a lot faster; and showcase what really matters in Revel; that is, the story, quests, exploration, combat, equipment/item management, character progression.

 

Building 'vast' isometric maps felt like the right thing to work on at the time; but wasn't getting us there.

 

Faced with potentially calling it 'quits' on the project (which for those keeping track, has technically been in the works in various forms for about 6 years (8 in the absolute, but i technically did not do game development for about 2 years during this time), that's 1 more year than it took to write Morning's Wrath from concept to ship) I opted instead for drastic measures.

 

I had identified the major aspects that were giving us trouble; and now I was desperate enough to go ahead and act on those issues in a way that I haven't dared to before.

 

The plan?

  • Drop all of the isometric areas
  • Use single image backgrounds instead
  • Have a single large overland map of graph connected locations
  • Have pc/npc/enemies use dynamic portraiture
  • Have battle play out in a 'planner' type mode (think FTL-ish)
  • Keep all the existing content, quests, npcs, etc. all the good stuff that works
  • Make the changes fast and get moving.

 

Its a gamble, but so far; in terms of performance, it is working; the result was overwhelmingly a 'technical shed' removing tons of complexity.

 

Two months in, and we're essentially back where we left off; which is a great turnaround time, given that previous revamps have taken roughly a year.

 

It is clear that while I was able to recognize the need to revamp and cut, I simply did not cut deep enough.

 

It has been clear to me since I released Morning's Wrath, that it needed, and was going to get a sequel.

 

Hopefully I've set things on a path towards real productivity.

 

Look forward to more regular content in the near future.

 

All questions are welcome in the comments below.




More to see

Posted by , 04 March 2016 - - - - - - · 533 views

I wanted to take some time to show another WIP screen from Revel Immortal, this time part of the 'talk' user interface.

 

Posted Image




A small peek of what's in the works

Posted by , 29 February 2016 - - - - - - · 561 views

Greetings all,

 

It's been roughly a month since my last update; though I've been giving detailed updates via the edigames Facebook page, mostly weekly; mostly uninteresting.

 

While I didn't mention it in my last post; it has been necessary to modify the format or 'style' of Revel Immortal, such that the content creation is doable ...and when I say doable, I mean doable by me *looks around* cause that's who is actually doing the designing, rendering, coding, writing and integration.

 

Some of you might remember there was a large revamp, around April '14 which lasted through Dec. '15; it was both revamp and new content creation; but that span of time, and the content that was able to created during that time was simply not sustainable.

 

There were also several problems with the technical aspects of the design (controls, character size, etc.) but I won't go into detail on that, since it really doesn't matter.

 

The real killer was that the effort required to author content for Revel in that form, was simply too much effort; if I ever hope to see it finished (hopefully no one is keeping count).

 

Since a large revamp was done already, there was really only one solution, a much more drastic revamp; one which I don't think I'd have even considered some years ago.

 

In any event, I'm not going to explain most of the changes; I'd like them to speak for themselves via video or animated gif as they become finished; however, I will show this, still very early screen cap, that shows a few of the new aspects.

 

Naturally this is a dev wip screenshot, you know the drill.

 

Posted Image








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