Moving right along, as they say, and we are getting ready to enter the most crucial part of our development to-date: the pre-alpha prep and polish. The team has spent the last year building up draft zonesseven plus a three-tiered dungeon), creating all the concept art, prepping all the skills and mechanics, and getting to this point. Now, it’s time to kick it up a notch and give you guys a taste of the real thing.
First and foremost, thanks to everyone who turned up for our first crowdfunding campaign this past Sunday. You hit our initial goal 36 hours out of the gate, and we’ve since been building up to stretch goals. We’ve still got until tomorrow morning to hit those, so let’s keep pushing!
Which leads me to the second thing I want to talk about: crowdfunding. I made a post about our transparency a couple of days ago, which you can read here. We’re going to be doing that from here on out for our backers: providing you with access to our monthly financials so you can see exactly how much is being spent versus earned, and how much the team is spending out of their own pockets to build this up.
But we won’t be releasing that information to the general public. You have to be a backer of our game, and backer levels and subscriptions aren’t publicly available just yet. Those will be coming down the pipeline when we’ve got our full pre-alpha and crowdfunding tiers ready to go, which should be avialable in the next few months. In the meantime, stay tuned to the newsletter as we’ll be talking more about our spendatures there in the meantime.
Such as: we are picking up around 350 USD worth of assets next week. The money from this first campaign will cover about half of those costs, thanks to you, the community. You guys rock! That’s a huge benefit to the team members, and it’s inspired us even more than before!
The next few months we’ll be going “dark” on social media. That is, we won’t be doing 3 – 5 updates per day. Instead, we’ll be doing one a day, or at most two. Plus the Saturday sitreps. But apart from that, we’ve got a *lot* of work to get done in the next two to three months.
First up, the art team is now officially working on the trailer. Emma is heading the charge there and has already gotten me storyboards for the initial animation sequencing. Secondly, the coding team is full-speed ahead on the UI and combat. Thirdly, my brother and I are taking the new series of assets and re-skinning the initial zone + dungeon that we’ll be using for pre-alpha testing, known as our Training Camp.
This will eventually become the downloadable trial version of the game that will be available on our website when we release the full version of the game. Players will be able to test our game for free in a seperate, downloadable trial that gives them a taste of what the game is all about. What we are using in pre-alpha is *not* the final version. The quests and content will be completely different in Live.
Meanwhile, David has completed a main theme variant, a tavern track, and is moving ahead with creation of combat music, zone music, outpost music, and a dungeon aura. He’s also got a massive collection of sound effects at his disposal, which gives us a leg up since we won’t have to do any purchases in that arena, and he’ll be working on those for us as well.
Remember, everyone here wears multiple hats. It’s part of the agile development process.
Our rough goal is to spend February and March finalizing the “draft” formats of the pre-alpha zone + dungeon + trailer. April will see us polishing those elements. Once they are at a point we feel they are ready, we’ll be letting players from our Teespring campaign into the pre-alpha as part of their two free months bonus, along with their five friends from the invite codes.
Bear in mind that these are rough timelines only and are not meant to be used as definitive dates. Pre-alpha will be ready when its ready, and not before. We do have a rough timeline and schedule, but we are also all of us working on this in our spare time between day jobs and kids/families/etc. Bear with us if we are off a week or three.
We’ll then do some initial testing for a few weekend runs, ironing out any kinks, and then we’ll be launching our official “public” pre-alpha, our crowdfunding campaigns, pre-orders, subscriptions, store, private alpha forums, and so much more.
But until then…we’ve got a shitload of work to get done. Which means it’s time for heads down, asses up…assholes and elbows…noses to the grindstone…<insert chosen work metaphore here>.
We’ll finally be doing some Twitch streaming over the next few months. Everyone on the team has various components they are working on, and we’re going to start doing streams throughout the week. My own streams (Tim “Renfail” Anderson) will take place in the early morning hours between 5 a.m. and roughly 10 a.m. CST more or less, although mine will be the least “high definition” because I’m streaming from a shitty ADSL connection in the back woods of Tabasco, Mexico where my wife and I are currently based visiting her family.
Even so…I’ll be streaming zone development, while David will be streaming some music composition, and the coding team will be streaming some UI and combat work, plus Emma and the art team will be streaming some of what they are working on with the game trailer.
We’ll also have another live Q&A coming up in February, so stay tuned for that as well. And remember, newsletter subscribers get the sekret sauze, with juicy details that don’t come out at the blog or social media, so sign up today if you haven’t already done so.
So the best way for you guys and girls to stay tuned to what we are working on will be via our newsletter + our Twitch channel. There won’t be a lot just yet; we’re going to come up with a schedule at our next team meeting on February 6th and from there we’ll let you all know when you can tune in to what.
Remember, you still have until tomorrow to help us reach our stretch goals for the Teespring campaign! Let’s see just how big of a bang we can go out with 🙂 Thanks again for everyone’s support, and we’ll be back at you next Saturday with our weekly sitrep.