Friday, 31 May 2019

What has happened since my last blog post!?

OK, It's been a while since I posted here (like about a year). But that's not because I've done nothing!
It's just I tend to use twitter instead when I have some news to share.
Anyway, I wanted to do a quick update!

So, Departure Lounge, isn't really any further along, I struggled a bit getting the art style down. I haven't abandoned the project, I just haven't done much work on it :'D

I have however done a nanoreno game this year - https://sleepyagents.itch.io/seven-seasonings called Seven Seasonings. It's got a bit of trading and some dice rolls in it!

Recording the Predestined Time (by myself and amorphous) was released in Feb - https://amorphous.itch.io/recording - we spent some time fixing up the little things that needed fixing! (and I put the OST onto my bandcamp.)

Back in September '18 I made this https://sleepyagents.itch.io/sleepy-rhythm-machine - Sleepy Rhythm Machine, which is more of a toy than I game I guess.

So, that's the main Sleepy Agents news! I'm also doing lots of audio stuff, so I'll try to remember to post here a bit more frequently.




Finally, today I posted my first ever online course, which is on Skillshare, it's about programming drums for electronic music, and it's aimed at beginners, you can check it out here -  - if that sounds interesting to you! <3

Monday, 4 June 2018

Development Blog - Music All Month May - Departure Lounge

I didn't post a blog at all in May! Oh no.

Well, I did work on music pretty much all month. ♪ I thought about doing a more technical 'how-to' type blog post (related to music), but I think that can wait until after I've finished this game!

I have recently uploaded a couple of WiP pieces of music to my soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/sleepyagents check em out! ♪

But they might be gone when you read this - if they are gone they've likely been replaced with more music for Departure Lounge, so either way you'll get to hear some music ^^

At the moment I am sort of feeling my way towards creating actually usable assets. I have some art concepts, scene sketches, lots of music in various states of completion, so during the next couple of months I'll very likely begin putting stuff in engine!

Perhaps I'll have some art or something more visual ready for my next blog post.

Till then :)

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Development Blog #9 - Continuing with concept art - Departure Lounge

I thought it'd be fun to put my early character concept alongside my most recent.

Early concept:

October 2017

To now, recent concept:

April 2018
The main things that I've noticed changing over the months are the eyebrows and piercings. The current design, although still pretty similar, fits the character better. There were some things about the character that I didn't know back in September.

As a bonus here is my very first sketch of this character! (from around September 2017)

XD

till next time!

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Development Blog #8 - Random concept art - Departure Lounge

Hey!
Here is some random concept art presented without comment (or nearly without comment!)



I got some watercolours about a month ago, so I've been combining playing with those at the same time as making concept art. Wow so efficient >.<

Thursday, 22 March 2018

Development Blog #7 - Departure Lounge - Finding fonts and deciding!

I used to sometimes look for fonts on a site called dafont. But I much rather use Google Fonts these days. I saw on a couple of occasions licenses on dafont which were different to licenses on other websites for the same font, which made me a little wary. Also, Google Fonts has a pretty good user interface. https://fonts.google.com/

The only thing I struggled with initially was finding a download button!
BTW you have to add your font to a selection and then open the selection which is where you find the download button, like this:


There are probably other ways to download fonts from Google Fonts, maybe!?

Anyway, what I tend to do is use the preview tools and the filters (for my title I wanted a font with serifs).

I ended up downloading way too many! Here are some I tried:


I just deleted the ones which I didn't think were quite what I was looking for.


Then I cut them down to the final four candidates!


In the end I went for the font that I liked the most before I even hit the download button. I have no idea if that is down to intuition or some kind of bias!

I'll reveal the font I decided on when I have a decent title screen ready to share!

Till next time!



Thursday, 15 March 2018

Development Blog #6 - Departure Lounge - Progress so far month by month

I'm going to do shorter posts for the next couple of months, as I begin to plan out assets and all that exciting stuff!

Today I wanted to highlight what has been happening on the project since around last September:

September - I had a weird dream that formed a couple of ideas for the story! Also started to scribble notes in a notebook, some about plot and setting and more on characters.

October / Inktober - I drew some character concepts.


November / Nanowrimo - Wrote the first draft of the story which came out at around 13k words.

December - Refined the first draft. Some music work.

January - Started the second draft. More music work. (I started using FL Studio as my main music production software, so I had to adjust to the new workflow).

February - Lots more music. (Also I watched loads of the winter olympics which meant I had less time than usual!)

March - Oh, we're here, in the present. I still haven't finalised the second draft. But I have begun work on the visual concept. Trying out some GUI ideas and starting to make decisions on the art style. And more music!

That's all for now.
Till next time!

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Development Blog #5 - Thinking about walking sims

Progress on the rewriting has been steady. Around a third of the scenes have been rewritten, so there is still a bit to go.
Concept art and music is starting to come together, which is going to be helpful when asset creation starts.
The next dev log post will probably be about music, as I have a piece that I'm working on that I'm planning on developing into a piece for the VN.

My current thinking is that I'm quite likely to present the game as a kinetic novel - but I am still considering whether choices may be included, so that is not at all final yet.

It's one of those things that I think about when playing a game. The whole player agency and authored experience spectrum. It's quite tricky deciding when and where the player has control, it can easily be jarring. For example, you might be controlling the protagonist walking around an environment, say in a 'walking sim' type game, which is really nice for a feeling of immersion. Then because the game isn't a massive open roleplay type of game, you inevitably at some point lose that agency because you have to get back on track with the authored story of the game to progress. In times like this you can feel fluctuations in the resonance between player and protagonist, where, from some points of view, it would be more elegant for there to be greater consistency.

Every experience requires careful thought from the designers side. Knowing what you want to achieve is important, but there's also concerns over things like audience expectations and desire, especially if the game is intended for commercial release.

Accessibility is something that can come into this decision also. Is control over timing of button presses important to the experience you are trying to create? I feel like there are games I'd like to experience the story of, but wouldn't want to spend lots of time (and probably frustration) on trying to hit buttons at the right time, failing, and trying again and again until I succeed.

For my game I'm expecting to keep working on it as a kinetic novel, and if at some point I decide that interaction would add something, then I may very well decide that it will no longer be a kinetic novel. It sounds quite easy when I say it like that, but I know from past experience that it will be something that I worry about quite a lot during development!

Till next time!