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Progress Report

Developer Blog 02 - What's The Hold Up?


Some time has passed since I posted the last developer blog and after I received a comment on the page recently asking whether the game would ever be finished, I decided to do an update for those who have subscribed.

Where Is It At Now?

The game is not on hold but moving very slow in development and the main reason for that is the art style. The project started out with tilesets of other artists to lay down the template of areas that would feature in the game but as time went on, I started to substitute other works for original designs of my own.

As a self proclaimed Pixel Artist, I would not feel happy with using other artist's artwork when I could easily create it myself but this is proving to be a quite a long and painful but also rewarding process.




The image above is of my own design which features in the game and it is creations like this that slow down the production of the game but to me are necessary for the full packaged of the game when it is finally completed.



When you add all the unique components of your work together such as original sprites and backgrounds then I feel as an artist and game design that I can truly say that this is my game.



Soundtrack

Music to me is very important for the setting as well as the telling of a story so when I spoke to composer William Pepper about what sort of sound I needed for the game, he understood straight from the beginning.

We sat down and read through the screenplay several times to get a feel of where each track would come in and how long it would last before moving into the next scene. I would write down key words to each track in which a certain town or cave should express for when you first inhabit the area and William would catch it each time.

On the whole we have over 100 tracks that feature in the game. One of the very first tracks created was the title theme.



Valius - Title Theme
Composed by: William Pepper





Characters

I recently uploaded a Characters page that will allow you to see the main characters and some of the secondary characters that appear in the game. The portraits displayed will be those that are featured in the game.

Characters




Feedback

I would appreciate feedback on all areas of the current state you see so far if you don't mind taking the time to send me a message or even a comment in the blog.

Thank You.


Progress Report

Developer Blog 01 - Changes


This blog is more of an update and reminder to myself as well as keeping subscribers up to date on what is happening and there is a lot currently happening behind the development of Valius.

DEVELOPMENT TEAM

Last year the development team consisted of 7 Members; 1 Composer, 1 Animator, 2 Writers & 3 Artists. The total now stands at 2, Writer and Composer. It was never the intention to have so many people working on the project or to even lose so many. As most developers knows you will lose members from your team to things such as outside work or education. It will happen but the project started with 1 writer and 1 composer which stands to date.

As a small team, we work much better together as the communication is stronger which allows us to work faster towards our goals. It is and will always be daunting for the amount of work that is required to pull a project such as Valius together.

FEATURES

The decision was made quite recently to cut loose a lot of the features from the game to allows us the time and space to focus more on the story. The features dropped are as followed;

Achievements
Side Quests
Journal
Properties
Guilds
Battle Arena
Guilded Marquee

It was quite sad to lose these features but since having dropped them, the project has a fresher and better feel to it at least in the testing.


STORY & CHARACTERS

At the beginning of the script writing process it was always apparent on where we were going with the story but not how we got there. So the foundations have been worked on meticulously until it felt right but then we stepped back and had a look at it and started to pick out the weak areas constructively and alter them when they needed altering or dropped them completely.

Without revealing the story or too much information on the game, we have had a lot of character shift arounds in terms of names, titles, background history etc. It is very important to us that when a character comes across that they deliver the lines not because it's forced from the writing perspective but because of their character background that makes their personality more real and believable in their being.

So as we created characters, we created their background then their history which helped with the scripting and dialogue knowing what a character would say and when.

ART STYLE

Since losing three artists and an animator, it was quite a blow to the art style of the game but we found a happy medium with the pixel art that it is and try very hard to create new rather than use existing resources from the internet of which there is so many.

From the very beginning of production we, the writer and composer, came to the project with a mind in movies. The use of camera work and scripting in the game is purely down to our knowledge in movies having watched and made several so when we tackled with the style of Valius, we go at it with a clapper board.

MUSIC

The project has been quite lucky to have such a talented composer on board helping in every way they can even out of the studio.

It was never really stated on how many tracks the project would require but at recent production meeting we came to a total count of 80 tracks so far which is quite surprising for a first project but each track has so much story to them in design and area of the game it would be insane to drop any tracks.

Game Design

Features Explained - Recall Sphere

WHAT IS A RECALL SPHERE?

The Recall Sphere is the save feature within the game Valius ñ The Wrath of Liberty. It acts as restorative feature allowing players to return to a certain part in the game providing that they saved their progress whenever they came across a Recall Sphere.

As an additional bonus to saving your progress within the game, the Recall Sphere also restores the entire partyís HP & MP.

DESIGN & FUNCTION

The spherical shape of the Recall Sphere allows it to revolve with ease on the plinth in which it is mounted. Whilst in rotation, the Recall Sphere is continuously recording a massive quantity of data and storing it within its infrastructure. The data in which it is storing is that of the area it is located and the time in which it is recording. This is so that the recall process can attune to any point in time and then when accessed, relocate to that particular point where it was first recorded.

While this is indeed a marvel of modern science, it has limited capabilities. The Recall Sphere can be
used to travel back in time for which is an astonishing feature however, the user of the device can only travel as far back to when they first became attuned to the Recall Sphere. While this is seen as a hindrance to the overall design, the Recall Sphere has served as practical apparatus for the budding hero.

For example, should a quest lead a valiant hero to the darkest of depths in a troublesome area to which they cannot traverse, they could call upon a Recall Sphere that they had previously become attuned to and return to that point in time.

The idea behind incorporating history and realism into the save feature of the game is to keep the playerís mindset in the game even when performing an action as simple as saving, the player is still playing a role with the game.

HISTORY OF THE RECALL SPHERE

The Recall Sphere was created by Heridomus, a sorcerer from the Arcane University. His original concept and intention was to create a Vista Orb, an object that allowed a viewer to observe past events. Heridomus spent much of his lifetime dedicated to his work until the day of completion, he had finally created his masterpiece. A trial was attempted within his workshop, empowering the sphere with magic. Heridomus stood back in awe at the sight of this glowing orb that now began to rotate. Activating the sphere, Heridomus felt a surge of power run through him as a blinding white light filled his workshop. Gazing into the sphere, Heridomus could see no images, only the clouding form of magic stirring within the sphere. Countless years wasted he felt as anger overcame him and he struck the wall with his clenched fist grazing his hand severely.

Several months had passed and Heridomus was working once again on new experiments when a miscalculated mix of potions caused a small explosion setting fire to his workshop. Heridomus dashed around, attempting to save valuable years of research when a second explosion propelled him across the room, landing upon the disused sphere he had created some time ago. Heridomus felt a third and final explosion although this time he had felt no force or heat, only a small warmth and then he sat up and looked at his workshop for no longer were there flames covering his work. He squinted his weary eyes in disbelieve, this was not his workshop at least not how he remembered it. He stood up and approached his workbench, his journal laid open to the day of the trial from his previous experiment, flicking forward through the empty pages, Heridomus noticed that his hand was no longer grazed.

Turning around in astonishment, he gazed at the glowing sphere. This was not a device to see into the past but to return to it...

Announcement

Game Features

There is now a FEATURES page for Valius - The Wrath of Liberty that includes a lot of the in-game features.

Announcement

New Screenshots

10 New screenshots have been uploaded, along with a battle screen shot that shows you the characters battle sprites. More info on the characters and game will come soon.
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