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Progress Report

[Devlog 7: March 2022] Still devving, (temporarily) not logging

Hello! Time for the next, and final (for now) devlog!
Nothing’s gone wrong with Call of the Overseer. I still am, and still will be, developing as I’m able.

The issue is that I don’t work fast enough to feel right posting bi-monthly devlogs at this point. Even after a year, the game is still in a very prototype’d stage. My progress is very slow, and I’ve realized the devlogs themselves had kinda started to become me working on specific things that I could show off, instead of working on things that actually needed to be worked on.

(...I feel like this is a common dev woe that I hadn’t realized until recently).

I talk about this with a little more detail in this twitter thread on my dev account *HERE*, but basically…

I’ll be temporarily stopping these bi-monthly devlogs! Apologies, but I’m just one dev who’s currently been working a bit too slowly to make consistent devlogs that I’m actually proud of. I DO want to revive bi-monthly (or even monthly) devlogs as Call of the Overseer gets into a more readied phase.

Now, on the topic of dev streams (which can be found *HERE*), I’ll probably still be doing those! Especially since the dev streams aren’t strictly developing, but also a good time to talk about other people’s games, game development, rpgmaker-related questions, and… anything really, not even just RPGM stuff.

So in conclusion: Still working on Call of the Overseer itself, there’s just gonna be a hiatus on these devlogs! Though, I’ll try to post more on my dev account with that in mind. Maybe some in-engine things here-and-there… an enemy or two… other character concepts… who knows!

With that, I’ll see you all next log, whenever that may be!

Progress Report

Devlog 6 [January 2022]

Ah… the first log of 2022! A day late.

I’ll keep it brief! It may have been obvious, but I’d been putting less time to work on CotO ever since around… September-ish? There’d been a few things going on (such as the two painful semesters leading up to THIS final semester… graduating spring 2022 baby let’s go!). And honestly a lotta things haven’t really *stopped* going on, but I’m instead getting better at managing said things, fortunately.

So while I don’t have much to say other than “I did some writing and database readjusting”, I think I can start putting a little more focus into CotO in the future, for the time being.

…I also have last month’s stream, which was pretty much just that!



Now, I DO have some plans for the future. The most important one being that I’m planning for Chapter 2 of Call of the Overseer to be ready and released by the end of 2022! Not much else to say there. Also, this is unfortunately a plan, and not a promise.

My other plan is to start holding more than one dev-stream a month, whether it’s CotO, or some other game I’m developing on the side, like one for a game jam. I can’t say how frequent streams will be, but that’s my plan for now.

And that’s all! Hope you’ve all had a nice start to the year, and I hope the rest of the year goes well!

Progress Report

[Devlog 5: November 2021]: Mostly-Main-Menu-Management

Hello! This is actually the last log of the year, huh? Well it’s been a wild year, and unfortunately, my devving took a backseat in the later half of it. So, this’ll be another shorter log.

(As always, you can also find (usually) monthly dev stream highlights on Twitch (link at end of log)! Though I did not have a stream in November 2021, I worked on sprites in October 2021’s stream).

In terms of visual stuff I can show, I basically finished up the main menu this month:

There still may be a few changes, of course.

And also made a little concept for an enemy:

You’ll encounter them in a few areas!

Other than that… I’ve done a lot of work on figuring out the items & fortes (skills) that I’m happy with, and... there’s more stuff that I can’t visually show.

Honestly, Call of the Overseer isn’t really at a point where I can show many visual things. It’s a lot of rough placeholders for the foreseeable future, especially for the environment/battle. So I can’t say what exactly the next log will bring… but that’s enough for this log!

Everyone have a great rest of the year! See ya in January!
===
Dev Streams
Dev Twitter

Progress Report

[Devlog 4: September 2021] Menu's and Dialogues

Hey! Hello! How’s everyone?

The log’s gonna be pretty short! Life, and all. Also, many things I’ve been working on aren’t... entirely devlog-friendly (lore, dialogue, story, gameplay spoilers(?), etc)...

So this time, I’ve...
*Made an in-game manual that tells you all about Status Effects, Stats, and Elements!

And maybe more if I think of anything else. Is there anything else you'd want to see in a manual like this?

*Started implementing the new main menu!
A lot of it (pretty much all of it) is placeholder images at the moment, but it should be more presentable by the next log.


*Started adding a number of small features/etc, making sure everything’s compatible with each other before I get too far ahead.

And for the future, I’ve been considering drastically changing how “Dungeons” operate. For reference, in the current two demo’s, the only Dungeon is “Tower of Advancement α”. It operates the same as the “Field” present in the demo, save for the “Dungeon Skills” and overall puzzles.

I have plans to differentiate dungeons further and to make Fields more interesting (with their own puzzles), but for now, I just wanted to quickly mention it, even if this is still in the planning phase!

And... that’s about it. Again, pretty sparse this month, though I did have a dev stream (shuruzy, on twitch) a few days ago! What I worked on there were mostly things I didn’t feel was necessary to talk about as a devlog update, like dialogue, skill, and item improvements!

Until next time!

Progress Report

[Devlog 3: July 2021] *Customizing sfx* *Customizing sfx*

Howdy! So, it’s the end of July… time for the next devlog!

This time, I just want to talk about what I have and have not done!

In the last log, I said that by the middle of June, I would have a video of one of the scenes+battles, recreated with the custom sprites I’d made.

That absolutely didn’t happen. Same with most of the other things I said I would do at the end of the previous log. Most plans from the last devlog are being held off to an unknown date, since I wanted to change focus.

I hadn’t realized it, but I’d gotten burnt out of character sprite making much quicker than I’d thought. Figured I’d be able to push out these battle graphics pretty quick and THEN take a break from sprites, but that happened much sooner.

In short, I felt like I wasn’t getting enough of the actual game made, and was also getting burnt out with custom character assets. I apologize for that.

Though I haven’t completely dropped asset-making for the time being.


Custom background assets are another thing entirely. These assets are something that I’m going to be working on rather slowly, since placeholders got my back until I’m ready to put these things in, but yeah! I figured I should see how making my own background assets goes...

Oh, and I DID make a short video of the progress in the Character Selection Scene, which can be found: HERE .

Now, I’ve also thought a lot about what I want the Final Demo to cover. I have an idea of what I want, and I plan to release the final demo some time next year. I can’t give an exact date, but just know that I’m lining up the Final Demo’s release to be pretty close to the full game’s release. My ideal is that the release of both will be only a few months apart.

...And I believe that’s it for this log’s updates. There wasn’t much to talk about or show upfront, but that’s mostly because I’ve been working on behind-the-scenes database stuff these past two months. Speaking of, I’ve actually held a few dev streams over the past two months. If you’re curious, that can be found: HERE.

I try to post Devlog streams at least once a month, and I always announce them on my dev twitter. I also post smaller bits of progress (like rough character dialogue) on my dev twitter. ...I would put a link here, but I already linked to it a few paragraphs ago.

...Alright, well, the end of September is the next log! I’ll be back in classes by then, so I can’t make any promises as to what will and won’t be there, but I hope to be back with some nice things to show!

‘Til next time!

Progress Report

[Devlog 2: May 2021] Sprites? Yeah, Sprites!

Hello! It’s the end of May, which means it’s time for the next devlog!
There’s a few things I want to discuss, and those are:
1] Sprites (+ Other Things Done This Month)
2] Plans for June+July
3] Thoughts & Plans for the “Major Update”

So let’s start with the sprites, since that’s what I said I’d be doing in the first devlog.

1] Sprites

Honestly, I went pretty beyond what I said I was going to do. Also, it’s pretty important.

In March, all I had planned was to find the right style and get Briar’s idle + walking sprites done. That was mostly because I didn’t know how difficult it would be to settle on a style or animate it, and so I wanted to give myself a lot of time just in case. And while it did take a bit of trial and error, I made a style that I liked a lot!


Pixel art isn’t my forte anyway, so I’m unsure why I thought I was gonna manage that. Small-scale lineless art, on the other hand...

And the animation process ended up going quicker than I thought, as well! So not only did I finish Briar’s idle pose & walking sprites, but I made Aadrios and Keir’s idle + walking sprites, as well as idle sprites for the other 3 protagonists!

So here comes the playable crew!

Karine, Keir, Briar, Aadrios, Elk, and Jay. This is the first time all 6 have been officially presented. Which do you like, appearance-wise? I’d love to know!

I worked on a number of other things between the two months, such as figuring out each area of the game, starting up on a few mechanics, and otherwise… some of which I’ll be getting into later in this log.


2] Plans for June + July

Sometime next month (June), I want to show a video of the “Barrier” Scene & Miniboss Battle with the new sprites of Briar, Keir, and Aadrios! I hope that you’ll enjoy it!

So to start off June, I’ll be working on Briar, Keir, and Aadrios’ cutscene sprites and battle sprites. At least enough to get this video made. After that, I may need a little break on spriting.

Throughout June + July, I will be posting the fullbodies (& reference sheets) of Karine, Elk, and Jay. The plan is to host a stream on twitch later this month where I draw a fullbody for one of these three. The character that I will draw will be determined by a poll on the twitter account, so go check that out! By the time of posting this, the poll should be up around next week.

In April + May, I also sorted out a lot of the areas these 6 will be traveling to. That’s why one of my primary goals before the next devlog is to start working on the enemies! Whether it’s concept-ing or spriting itself, it’ll be a pretty enemy-focused two months. I’ll be starting that after the Barrier Scene video.


3] Thoughts & Plans for the “Major Update”

So in the first devlog, I talked all about this Major Update Demo and what sorts of things would be in it. I’ve had a good amount of time to think in between logs, and I’ve come to the conclusion that it definitely won’t have all of those things. For one large reason:

THAT’S A LOTTA STUFF!!

Both from my end and the player’s end! Honestly, I’d rather you all not get burnt out, especially since carrying save data would likely not be possible between the “blueprint” major update and the final version.

I said the Major Update would contain about... 30% of the game? Hey, that’s a pretty sizable amount, honestly. And I hadn’t even realized it at the time, especially given the style of this game! Also, with pretty much all of the features and characters being in that blueprint, there wouldn’t be too much more to look forward to other than the story itself. All six protagonists would be available, and with all the eventing involved in that, I might as well keep going until I finish the full game instead of stopping & making a demo out of what I’ve made.

So, I definitely don’t want this Major Update to drop you at the beginning of the story and play around 30% of it, BUT, I don’t want absolutely no sort of update between now and the completed version of Call of the Overseer.

That’s why, at the moment, I’m heavily leaning towards an eventual “Gameplay” Demo. It’ll be a battle-centric demo that’s almost like a playground for you to experience all 6 characters combat-wise. It would likely consist of one large dungeon that will not be in the final version of Call of the Overseer. There would be little to no story/context involved in this demo, but it would still contain some character dialogue here and there.

I’ve considered other types of demo’s, but this one’s appealing to me the most. Let me know what you think about this sort of demo!


Well, that’s about all I wanted to say for this update, so in conclusion:
  • The sprite-making operation was a success!

  • I’ll be posting a video in June of the updated Barrier Scene with the new sprites.

  • I’ll primarily be working on figuring out enemies for the next 2 months.

  • I plan to host a fullbody drawing stream for the winner of an eventual twitter poll sometime this month.

  • I’ve been reconsidering what I want from this “Major Update” demo. Current plan is a "Gameplay Demo"


Yeah, that about sums it up! I’m on break now, so I’m hoping to get even more done in these next three-ish months!

So, until next time!

Miscellaneous

Itch Page Available!

Tiny blog-post, but yep! There's an itch page for CotO now! I planned to do this waaay down the line, but it really is better to just do it now!

Itch Page

Nothing really different over there, just another place to hold CotO.

Aaand the other usual places CotO & CotO-related info can be found:
RPG Maker Forums Page
Twitter Page

Progress Report

[Devlog 1: March 2021] Fullbodies & Futures (Plans)

Hello! Hey! Howdy!

So, Call of the Overseer’s been out for a bit, and I wanted to start by saying that I'm very glad, and relieved, to see that it’s been received well between the sites I’ve posted it on & the people I've watched play it!

Though now the question is… What AM I doing for CotO now? What’s next for CotO? Well now that I've finished 3 of the protagonist's fullbodies (shown later in this post) I’m back in the engine, refining the ACTUAL cutscene that plays after the first Guardian (Nameir)’s battle. After that, it’s onto the next scene!

And as for what’s next in CotO's development, my goal is to have a “Major Update Demo” complete and playable by the end of this year!

So, what’s going to be in the “Major Update Demo”? What makes it so major? Well there’s planned to be…
-About 35% of the full game.

-All 6 protagonist will be selectable to play as, + all their prologues will be implemented (3-5 minute scenes, just prior to the events of the current demo).

-“Halcyon”, a hub location where you can converse with otherworldly beings, exchange energy for unusual enhancements and other rarities (or commonalities, if you really just need a LiChu Bead and don’t care about some rare “hyper elixir of all life”, or something), get to know the team better, and more.

-“Roots & Branches”; a skill learning system that involves changing a base (root) skill in multiple ways (branches). While you must pay a small fee the first time you want to learn a branch, you can learn or unlearn the branch for free afterwards.

And as for things that I would prefer to be in the Major Update, but may not fully make it in just yet:
-A preview of the optional “one-on-one” conversation system (name pending) between party members. The further you advance two character’s conversations, the more bonuses they will get. Eventually, the two involved can learn a devastating (or helpful) team attack, known as a “Synchroforte”.

-A preview of the optional “group chat” conversation system (name pending) between characters, whether they’re playable or not. These do not provide in-battle bonuses like the one-on-one’s, focusing more on how important characters interact with and learn from each other.

Now, let’s look at the goals for the Major Demo a bit more mechanically…
In the broadest of senses, there are *technically* only about 5 things that I need to get done for this next demo:
-Character Sprites
-Enemy Sprites
-Story/Cutscenes up to the end of the 2nd Tower (end of Major Update demo).
-Battle-related things (balancing, new enemy creation, character skills)
-Character designs/waist-ups/cut ins.

...Clearly, there’s much more detail that goes into each of these things. And they all need each other to work properly. The cutscenes can’t be properly choreographed without new character sprites, the battles can’t be fully realized without all 6 protagonists being implemented, character sprites can’t be made without character designs being finalized, etc etc!

That’s why, despite the seemingly short list, I can’t confidently say the next update won’t be done until AT LEAST the end of the year. Also, real life things will get in the way at some point, I’m sure. And as for the full game itself, well… I have no given date yet. Still, CotO is a smaller scaled project, and something that I feel I can actually complete at some point without being scope-crept, given the format of the gameplay & story.

In terms of gameplay length, for the Major Update, the loose estimate of one playthrough is 3-4 hours. For the eventual full game, the loose estimate of one playthrough (at this point) is 9-10 hours?

Now, looking back at the list... the character sprites are already made, right? The enemies to some extent too, right? Well about that…

I’m planning on making my own sprites. For various reasons, that’s what I’ve decided.

Do you still call these “sprites” when they’re not pixel art? ...You do, right?

Making my own sprites is not something I’m entirely used to, especially when it comes to animating them. This will probably be the most time-consuming step for this update, and it’ll be a very new endeavor, so bear with me there!

Next month (April) is when I’m going to start working on these sprites! I’m aiming to get the sprite style/concept/proportions/etc right, then working on Briar’s walking + idle poses, if all goes well.

Well, one more thing before I’m done… Now’s the time to show Briar, Keir, and Aadrios’ fullbodies!

While the designs of these three in particular were very much based on their demo sprites, there are a few differences in their actual designs.
Briar Ardrel, Age 25, They/Them. A Luvine adept in harnessing the Sky element!

Keir Osiria, Age 22, He/Him. A Sirin adept in Life-restoring and blessed arts!

Aadrios Eldaum, Age 24, He/Him. A Luvine with Sirin blood-- adept in accursed arts relating to the afterlife!

And if you’d like to eventually see each character’s reference sheets, I’d suggest following the gamedev twitter! Things are a little bit more laid back around there in terms of what I post. Also, I scaled down the fullbodies for this site, so the fully sized ones will also be on the dev twitter if you have interest in that.

There are three more protagonists that have yet to be seen, so I wonder if these three will still retain your interest as the others are eventually revealed...


With that, this about sums up what I wanted to say for this devlog. I can’t give an exact schedule on when I’ll post devlogs, but the end of every other month is the ideal. Which means the next log is planned for the end of May.

Well, until next time!

Announcement

QoL Update is Available! & Twitter Page!


I was wondering what to call this update, but I believe this could be called a "Hyper Quality of Life" update... so that's what I'll call this!

This update does not advance the story, it simply fixes a lot of things didn't have time to look over in the Seasons Version!

So, if you've already played the Seasons version, it's definitely not necessary to play this version! Still, if you want to see what's changed, I've got a list here!:
Notable Updates:

*Enabled dashing by holding SHIFT (there is also an option to enable automatic dashing in the settings menu).

*The “Order” option has been removed from the menu.

*Added arrow indicators inside of Temple of Advancement α.

*Added an “Ailment Guidebook”, received after the “Basics of Battle” tutorial (This will tell you the specifics behind Burn, Frostbite, Daze*, and Regen).

* *Renamed Paralysis to Daze.

*Crystals will now show the Energy (currency) you currently have while being asked to be healed.

*Changed Aadrios’ second skill to “Flesh Rot” (Flesh Rot deals Blaze damage to 1 foe and has a chance to inflict Burn).

*Changed the Battle HUD graphics.

*Made a game icon.


Minor Updates:

*Added a chit-chat if you decide to walk back to where Briar woke up after Aadrios and Keir join.

*Crystals inside the Tower of Advancement now cost the correct amount of Energy (previously, the message displayed the cost as 10, but it costs 12).

*Updated some skills’ descriptions to better represent the time frame for casting and duration of effects.

*Made a few animations easier to see.

*Changed Ether Drain’s name & animation.

*Added World Map music.

*Added “Species” to Briar, Keir, and Aadrios’ info pages, as well as small blurbs about each of them.

*Made the icons of status effects inflicted on Nameir easier to see.

*Slight dialogue & enemy stat balance changes.

*Changed Bladed Will-O-Wisp’s name to Bladed Soul.

*Swapped the Flame Cryst enhancer for the Frost Cryst enhancer.

*Flame Cryst will still exist, just not in this demo.

*Changed a few treasure contents.

*Fixed passability errors.

*Fixed sound effect when using a healing skill (Lumin Cure) from the menu.

*Attempted to fix a rare error with Aadrios’ movement in the cutscene at the roof of Tower of Advancement α.

Etc:
*Aadrios found melanin Briar, Keir, and Aadrios' designs have been finalized and I plan to show them by the end of the month. The sprites in this demo do not accurately reflect them, but there is a notable enough change to Aadrios' sprite in this version.


Also, I have added a twitter page link(?) to the home page! Small progress updates will be posted there.

Thanks for reading, and if you find any errors, you can let me know on here, on the dev twitter, or any other way!
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