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Weekly Journal - Back to Business

Hi everyone,

Two weeks to go until patch time!  As the team is mostly back to normal, we’ve got a lot of stuff to talk about this week.

Narrative Team

Alex

Three recording sessions this week.

I brought back the Voice of the Honey Bandit, Jay Simon, for a slew of new barks about, among other things, the Plague. A big Marvel no-prize to whoever figures out what the Plague Wastrels are saying, once they start saying things in the game.

Lisa (new writer) and I finished our rewrite of the playthrough of She Who Must Not Be Named, which meant I was able to call back the actor who plays One of Her Many Fans.

And I brought back the utterly charming Alex Wyndham (Arthur) for a slew of new barks – plague, again – and to pick up revised lines for many of the cinematics. There’s been a fair amount of carnage in the cinematics; it’s a sign of how healthily we’ve staffed up that we can afford to burn some old work in order to do even better work.

We are starting to design a slew of new encounters, particularly in the Village. It’s always challenging to write dialog for an encounter that hasn’t been built yet, because I have to guess what the events will be that will trigger the dialog I’ll write. On the other hand, I get to shape the encounters so that they are revelatory of our world and its people. 

A little while we all went to MIGS. I blogged a bit about what I heard about dynamic stories in Richard Rouse III’s talk.

Two more recording sessions next week, one with She Who Must Not Be Named, and one with an evil Hammer-movie-villain scientist named…

Programming Team

Matt

After what feels like a six month break, I am finally finding time to come back to world generation.  As you can see from the picture below, world generation is currently done on a whiteboard using diagrams of dubious value.

You can see a couple of things on here that we’re looking to address.  One of these is removing the grid structure and moving to a more natural road structure, and one is bringing back height variation.  There are some other hints about future plans, and our relationship with a shadowy worldwide organisation, if you are into that.

It’s a bit challenging to show this today because we are not sure whether these will work out.  However, if it does, the world should look and play with much greater variation with each playthrough.  If it doesn’t, we’ll have to figure something else out.

Design Team

Antoine

It’s been quite a busy time for the level design team. We’ve been pitching ideas around for story missions, reviewing those with the leads and getting some traction on the golden path logic. A “golden path” is really the main quest logic from beginning to the end. The idea is to get everything that we currently have for story missions and lay them out in a really crude way inside the editor. That way we can see if the pacing is correct and make adjustments to whatever we want before delving deeper in the polish phase of production.

We’ve been also discussing the ramping of difficulty from one island to the other. There are some things in the works for Village 2 (currently you’ve been scouting Village 1 which is called St. George’s Holm) on the side of spankers. We will be incorporating Spanker TVs in the streets that are able to know if you are on joy or not (like the ones in Faraday’s Lab). We’ve been also slowly incorporating more of the “Hooligan Wastrels”. These will be placed in the world sometimes guarding water pumps. That way you have a bit of challenge getting to water resources. Don’t worry though, we won’t make it so that every water pump have a bunch of angry hooligans running around.

Art Team

Sarah

Another week, another sign(s). Soon the Villagers will have a local oasis, inside which they will congregate to hit on that lady they saw at the Chemists, or to make absurdly friendly conversation in the lavatory while drying their hands. They'll have a place to offer unsolicited advice to persons nearby, who will be offended despite carrying on highly personal conversations at full volume. I am of course, referring to the Village Pubs to come. One such pub will be named The Green Man, and this is it's painted hanging sign.



Hanging signs like this one will be the beacons guiding Wellington Wells locals toward familiar sticky floors and that sweet, sweet stale beer smell. Here are some beer spout labels I designed for the local big seller Real Ale. It tastes so delicious, it must be Real!



Guillaume Jr

Hey everyone!

This week, I've been working on props to help Marc-André on the Pub he is making. I'm really happy with the end result I have for the leather couch. I took the time to sculpt the details and folds to have a better normal map.

I've also started working on the cannon scene that I'll share with you guys next week.  
That's it for me, have a good one!   


Emmanuel

I did this:



I know it makes no sense.  But it will!  One day, when we’re ready to talk about this section.

Marketing Team

Clara

Hi!

My name is Clara and I work on both on the production and marketing side doing video... stuff. There is surely a name for it, but I'm pretty much a ninja.

I have been working on the video for the December Update and also made this little video about MIGS, enjoy!

Animation Team

Vincent

Ahoy! On this week schedule, nothing particularly fancy, new or exciting on my side. But some necessary stuff, like giving a hand on french localization. We’ll end up having professionals reviewing everything on that front, but as lots of us are native french speakers, we try to have a first translation pass on all in-game text : subtitles, journal entries, tooltips, map markers, you name it! That way, we can build systems that will allow things to go (a bit) smoother when the real thing will come in. If you ever played the game with subtitles, you know we still have quite a way to go!

I also spent some time on reviewing the ‘POIs’, aka the Points Of Interest. That’s what makes the NPCs do a bit more than walking around. And yes, I’ve been toning down the puddle jumping to make room for other things, like flower sniffing, shady deals, patty-caking (?). Don’t worry though, they still like puddles!

Now before you wonder : “Why does this guy say he’s an animator?”, I’d like to point that I’m also starting to work on an animation that’ll show when you first get out of the shelter…

Thanks for tuning in!

Compulsion Games

 

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