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About Telemachos

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  1. Telemachos

    Developer blog/CM

    Thanks for the answer! I think we may use it, the only thing that I dislike, is the very long address (not very practical, as we plan to put on visit cards/trailer and such)
  2. Telemachos

    Developer blog/CM

    Hello. As I'm continuing to work on my project, we have a first public "official" apparition on the 11th november at Minsk DevGam. I would like to catch some first possible fans, and keep the traffic somewhere before the release, early access or a possible crowdfunding. As we're a small team (5), we don't have any web designer, neither community manager, I think we'll opt for the minimum: A developer blog (+copy of it on social networks) and a newsletter. I read the pixelprospector guide on devs blogs, however some points are still shady to me: -Which blog software would you use for optimum result, with a minimum time investement -How detailed is the information I should put on the blog. I've thought about some background overall articles (main plot and characters), some game design articles to explain the choices beneath each mechanic, obviously concept/promo/ingame art, and some themed article to present each faction, most of the enemies, etc, but leaving a bunch of things in the shadow for the release. Subsequential questions are: -Should I put more (all) the information on the blog, like an user friendly gamedocument? -Would game design articles be too specialized and not interesting for most of visitors? I though about borrowing the form of the developer diaries, on the Paradox website, that I love to read.
  3. Telemachos

    Game funding questions

    So, good news, we found the money. I post here a small synopsis of what happened, maybe it could help somebody in our situation in the future. What didn't worked: -Banks. I've applied to a loan in 50+ banks and received only two positive answers, both for a sum less that I'd applied and on very bad conditions. If you have a good income you can in theory apply for a personal loan, but condition are bad (compare to corporative loans), and it's far more risky, as if the project fail you'd have to pay everything from your pocket anyway. -P2P lending sites, investors platforms. Sadly enough 100% of propositions that we received were obvious scam, or just random weirdoos. -Editors: Editors are not funding games. They can help with part of the funding, but usually they take care only of the PR part. That's what I've learned by contacting editors. Also that was my first contact with them, and I was surprised to learn that they take so much parts of the game. I sign an NDA with moth of them, but I believe that I don't break the law by saying that it's about 60-70% What didn't worked but still was useful -Venture capitals. I applied in about 200 ventures, in different countries. Only 10 answered to me, and nobody was interested. Ventures prefers long term project that can generate insane amount of money in 2+ years, and not really interested by a game that cost 30000USD to create and that will bring 60000USD on steam at best. it was still interesting, as I managed to get some interviews with managers, and some og them give me good advice, and one even gave me contacts of several private investors that could be interested by the project. -Indie Game Contests/Crowdfunding: Both of them have the same problem - you need at least a VERY good prototype, or an alpha to have a chance to be funded by them. So it's more a disguised early access/PR campaign. However if you have the initial funding, they can be an (unreliable) fund source. I've monitored Indie Contests, and I saw about 20 of them worldwide in just two past month, with prizes going from 1000 to 20000USD. Yes, you have to win them to get the prize, but the concurrence isn't really overhelming if you have a good project. What worked at the end -A bit sad, but essentially networking. After spamming for a month every person that I've met during the 3 years of work in the game industry, I've found an interested investor. I've also spammed a lot of random "rich" people (some that I knew, some adviced by other people, some totally random people that i've found contacts on the web). There were some chances on this side too, but the first method worked first. I've worked in fundraising for non-gaming companies, so I can compare a bit, here is my thoughts: -Fundraising in indi gamedev is very chaotic, and not organised. The method of "spam random people and see what's you get" was the sole one we could use in the early 10's, before the startupomania. While I could admit that the startup trend wasn't entirely a good thing, at least it's created a lots of funding hubs that can be also used for non startup companies. Most of them are not existing in the indiegamedev and that's a pity. -Network is even more important then in ordinary fundraising campaigns. I regret that I've didn't been on a lot of gaming industry events (mostly because they cost a lot, so I've been only at those where my ex-company were present), and didn't really networked there (usually I was just taking care of the stand). I'll edit this message if I'll have some more ideas^^. Also I've decided to open a small developers blog as soon as we'll have something to show here.
  4. Telemachos

    Game funding questions

    That was my original intent, but there were a problem with the artist. As he had a bad period, he honestly warned me, that if we don't work full time, and he receive another fulltime work offer, he'll had to take take it, and that would delay everything greatly. An option would be to find someone other, but I've already worked with him, he's pro and serious, and besides that he also give me a very good "friend" price, If I'll hire someone of his level I'll have to pay much more. Anyway, it's a strong possibility if I don't find a solution soon; A remake of a board game I've created several years ago. The player play as a god that have to make his heroes accomplish divines quests. However he doesn't have a direct control on them (in the board game that was represented by the fact that the player who played the heroes, and the player who played the god didn't have the right to communicate, in the game - single player mode, the player has to play as the god, and has only indirect possibilities to guide the heroes). Besides divines quests, the god have to improve his heroes - sometimes by granting them divines boons, but more often by spawning divine challenges for them. So it's mostly an anticipation game. I'm working on a better description right now. May look a bit complicated, but as it's a tabletop game adaptation the mechanics and graphics are quite simple (a 3D board with hexagons, and the wandering heroes) and the god powers, represented by cards in his hand. I've commissioned cards to an artist when I did the tabletop game, and still have the full arts, but we'll see if we use them - as the original game was settled in Celtic mythology, and we may change that. The pro version of Unity is still not free (125$ per month) and may be really useful over the free version. I don't think that Unity and Unreal are really competing, there used for very different projects, and have a quite different architecture.
  5. Telemachos

    Game funding questions

    Oh, I misunderstood, I though about a crowdfunding campaign using a no-graphics proof of concept. Yest I'm working on a POC right now. This is the tricky point. Most investors that I've seen (I've worked for fundraising for some non gamedev startups) often invest only at 50/50 ratio toward the company capital. most are not interested to invest in captial-less startups, mostly because having the creator putting money in his project from his pocket is a proof of his reliability/confidence toward the project. As I said I have about 12000$ savings, that I could use to pay the artist and live myself to work fulltime on the game during the summer, hoping to have an early alpha in September. However I really want to avoid a possible situation when the alpha still need time and money, when I'm totally broke, no investor is interested because company capital is inexistant and no budget for a eventual crowfunding. Sure, created code and art may be considered as company assets, and count toward the capital, but in my experience that require quite long (and possibly costly) diligence due processes to acknowledge the fact. Being no artist myself I have no real arguments about it, except that I've often heard the opposite point of view from professionals. About the engine, I would not advice someone to work even on an indie project on the free version of unity, the 125$ per month are really not a big deal compared to the time you can lose because of missing feats. Obviously that's true only if you work fulltime on it. However this is not really an issue for us,as we're already fully equipped software and hardware wise.
  6. Telemachos

    Game funding questions

    Thank you for you answer The problem is that is the project is in a small scope and I already have a team (just plan to hire a freelancer for UI/Icons). Having the framework already done, I plan to have an early alpha in 2-3 month. Also having a lot of different artist is usually most harming for the project, as each one have his own style. that's was one of the reason of the bankruptcy of the company where I've worked, as the artistic director changed 5 times in two years, and there where periods without any person at this post. Thist is a variation of the crowdfunding thing. As the game is barely finished code-wise, and not started art-wise I have nothing appealing to show. I had this problem even with potential investors like "ok, I'm interested, show me your game images". I can't show him lines of code). I commissioned an artist to have some theoretical game pics, I'll see if it's gonna ease the thing. I'm using Unity and a framework that I've wrote my self. Don't know what the 3D artist is using. but as he's in the game industry since 10 years I suppose he's equipped. Also IMHO that's a bit controversial - that's probably true for code since most of engines are free nowadays (still, if your're lucky enough to find an ideally fitting stuff on the asset store that could be a lot of work saved). But i don't know to which point you can replace PS with Gimp or 3DSMax with Blender. I had a animator friend that complained a lot about DragonBones (Spine free version) for missing features. I'm not sure that a demo that is using grey boxes and grey floor instead of characters and environment would be appealing to people. I fear that it will even have the opposite effect. The problem here, is that is not really fitting for small projects. As the code is barely done I estimate that I could finish it in a month of full time work, then use 1-2 month for debug, playtest and integrate art. Same for art, the artist told me that he needs about 2-3 three weeks of concept, then about a month of full time to finish all the ingame 3D. As i said before we'll hire a freelancer for UI/Icons, a translator for English version and I have an compositor ready to give a helping hand and do the music for free. So it's probable that the moment when we'll have something to show = the moment we have our alpha ready, so we don't really need cash (never hurt for the release PR but far less critical then today). I've already checked that. Here (Russia) most of grants for IT/Gamedev companies are about tax and social contributions exemption. That's great for big establish companies, but don't really help to start. There is some grants given by big companies, but that's usually indie games contests, so you need at least a playable alpha.
  7. Telemachos

    Game funding questions

    So I bet this topic was enough discussed here, but I'll still try with my problem: So, I've worked for 2 years in a indi gamedev company with great ambitions. Finally the company went to bankrupt. I've asked the permission to use the framework I've created for the game myself, as I have an idea of a way simpler game, using the same mechanics. The CEO granted it to me (even have some legal stuff, etc). I have a small team on paper, and I've calculated the development cost, that would be around 30.000USD (including a small release PR). I have have about 10-12000USD that I can can spare on this project, so let's say that I'm lacking 15.000USD, that may seem like a not so big sum, but i've discovered that is quite hard to fund. -First I thought about bank loans, but I've met a lot of difficulties, banks seem to be frighten by loaning to gamedev companies. I can't take a personal loan neither, because I've changed 3 countries of residence past 3 years, so my credit/income story is inexistant. -Secondly I've though about private investors and FFF. I have some contacts/promesses, but it still unreliable for the moment. So question here: Is there some centralized sires/plateforms where you can seek investors into gamedev (I tried some local platforms, but people are even more frightened by game industry then banks). -Crowdfunding. I don't believe that in 2018 a noname studio that don't have a big PR asset (like a renowned team member, a license to use a setting or at least a trailer made by a known animation studio) can't hope to get anything from kickstarter and such. Also for the moment we only have code and a desdoc, which is not very sexy for crowdfunding. Going that way means that I'll have to spend my money on PR things, with the risk of don't get any money. So did I miss some possibilities? What are your experience with that?
  8. Telemachos

    Need some critic over a game trailer storyboard

    There is no pictures for the moment, as we have to draw them for the trailer I want to have a good storyboard (just text about what's in the video).
  9. Telemachos

    Need some critic over a game trailer storyboard

    Hum, nobody at all? Maybe somebody know a place where I can get this thing criticized? Or some tutos for commercial use trailers? I didn't any any outside of very basic ones on the for now.
  10. Hello We're working on a project since a year, and recently, to participate into a contest we need a game video/trailer. It could be a simple gameplay video, but I saw that games with polished trailers were really advantaged last years. I never did videos before, so I wrote this after seeing some pro trailers. The main points of our game are: -A strange and well written setting -A strong freedom of action -turn per turn battle system, close to tabletops RPGs -a strong race/class and multiclassing strategy (6 races and 21 classes) for team members (think FF Tactics) I wanted them to be visible in the video Also, we don't have a lot of material for the videos, as we didn't started any form of promo for the moment (basically that contest will be our official announcement) We have: -Concept arts -Ingame videos -We could draw 2-3 promo art for the video -Hopefully we will have the main game theme for the music Here is the storyboard: (Picture - Creation of Adam by Michelangelo) (Text) Each world is the mirror of the God who created it. But how would look a world created by a god... (First promo art - a view of a game location) ...who thought that the Metro is the finest human creation? (First video - Adventure) (Text just before the first video) Explore a huge and breathtaking world (Text just after the first video) Would you be a Trader? An Explorer? A pirate? (Optional) (Concept arts of characters) (Text) Decide who will be your trustworty friend... ...and who will be your deadly foe (second video - combat system) (Optional - text during video) A turn per turn system close to tabletops RPGs (Different concepts art of classes and races) (Text) Meet your teamembers from X races And choose their ability from 21 classes. (Logo animation on the second promo art) XXX release the XXX Here are my questions: -What do you think overall? -Should I keep things labelled optionnal? -I've tried as hard as possible to avoid text/picture/video overlaps. That something that I strongly dislike on some trailers because you can't read and watch at the same time, Do you think I'm right? -I've putted the game name and logo only at the end of the video, do you think that's an error? -Do you think that the video is showing our strong points enough? -A last question: gameplay wise we have 6 different races in the game. However it's the male/female variation of three basic races. In two cases they are looking really differently, in the last one it's basically humans. Do you think it's wiser to speak about 6 races, 3 races, or just not mention that topic. Thank you for your critic
  11. Telemachos

    Where to find artists / designers ?

    We generally use DeviantArt, as there is a lot of great artists there.
  12. Telemachos

    Best method for us to create these sprites?

    Checked a bit, it seems that most bone animation software have issues with 2,5D because of perspective. Spriter may work, for a jRPG style (that I would prefer to avoid, but in case if there is no other choices...)
  13. Telemachos

    Best method for us to create these sprites?

    Thanks a lot for your answers, I think we'll go for bone animation. I''ll make some try to work with unity (whithout Spine) tonight.
  14. Telemachos

    Best method for us to create these sprites?

    Hum, that's seems reasonable. If I take your middle prices, for 3D, the cost would be 1000$ for the core work, and about 5x6x400=12200$ for the animation (number of animations -5 number of bodies -6), for a total of about 13000 just for the playable sprites. And at least as much for the enemies, even if we cut a lot of them. That would be about 26000$ just for sprites, considered that we have a 25000$ budget for all the game graphics, for the moment.
  15. Telemachos

    Best method for us to create these sprites?

    Yes, I was meaning bone animation/spine while I was speaking about the 2D possibility. What are the possible drawbacks? I fear that 3D is inevitable, as it seems more cost effective anyway.
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