September 2020 Studio Update
Greetings! September flew by and so has work here at Broken Hammer.
So lets get started right away with our update on the...
September saw a continuation of more polish for Day One of our Early Access release. Ryan and Josh did quite a bit of work in engine over the course of the month like they did in August.
Highlights we can share are that we expanded choice points on the day and added some new scenes! Gwynevere's sequences have so far seen the most updates. Anyone who has play tested in the past, or checked out our alpha stream play test, will find a lot of changes that improve her sequences quite a bit.
Why so much needed to be changed for her is part because of changes that have been made to William's character. These required updates to many of the conversations and so while they were at it, they also updated the heroines. While we won't go into the changes made to William, what we can say is that they were more like slight tweaks than a complete change over. They should only affect the Cathedral story arc and will not carry over into the main branch stories.
Imagine you are attempting to change the structure of a skyscraper at the lowest level. You usually don't want to do that. Anything could throw the entire mass off. Which is why all changes had to take into account the entirety of Dust and Air. Every story arc. We didn't want to make something too drastic and then throw off the rest. However, we also needed to make enough changes to improve the foundation.
As of this posting, Ryan and Josh have finished almost all of the work they planned to do. Much of what is left is some final checks and preparing the app itself for release on Steam.
Which brings in the current focus and will define the next two months of work: Getting Dust and Air all set up for Early Access release. There is simply, a lot more to Early Access than just paying $100 and getting your game tossed up on the Steam store.
If you are curious about game development, we highly recommend checking out the steamworks website. It details all the steps needed to bring a title to Steam. Currently Broken Hammer is in a bit of a holding pattern for about 30 days while Steam checks us over. The fee for Dust and Air has been paid and we've now got to build out our Steam community pages. All of this will need to be cross checked by Steam before it ever goes live. Typically that takes up to a week they say.
Pages on Steam require a lot of content to be listed, which is what we're working on now. Thankfully we have some assets we may be able to reuse from the IndieGoGo. However, we need to make a bit of new content. This involves mostly video work, which can be time consuming depending on what is needed.
We've reached out to Muse for some insight and we may have a chat with Howard coming up to discuss it. They are figuring out Early Access as well for the first time so, we're both in the same boat to some degree.
As far as Trading Cards and Profile items, we probably won't have those at launch on Early Access. However, these were a goal of ours so, we will be implementing them in time. We just don't want to set aside the art talent for them right now.
Lastly, as we close up here. We gave Ingrid an assignment. One that was not for Project 2 but, actually for Dust and Air. We wanted to test her ability with blending her art style with our own. Given that we've got a lot of art to do for the rest of the story, finding artists that can keep the style is a necessity. Otherwise we'd probably have Georgy overloaded with art for years to come.
That said, the assignment we gave her was to try her hand at Calle. Calle has been behind a bit on her development this year. Georgy finished one of her models, two major key images, and some expressions before the c19 mess hit.
To the right is one of her line arts by Ingrid. Which comes very close to Georgy's work and is a successful test of being able to blend art styles.
Georgy had expressed interest in simply coloring and shading models. So, by having the core parts done, it could save him time and free him up for other work.
We'll be posting the color version of this later as Ingrid wraps up her work. So far it is looking really good.
How this will relate to Project 2 will be revealed in time. The team there has been steadily building concepts and is getting close to getting some final pieces decided. We do hope to bring on at least one more artist onto that project to help with backgrounds so, stay tuned!
October will be busy, that much is certain. We're hoping to have most of the major work on our Steam pages completed. There is one video that might be delayed slightly till November but, it is an optional one that we're still considering for Steam. We may drop it due to time constraints.
Alright, that is all for September! The road to Early Access continues! See you in the skies!