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Almost two years have passed since Squall and his comrades defeated the witch Ultimecia and brought peace to the world.

A peace that was short-lived.

Dollet, sensing Galbadia's weakness after the tyrannical rule of the possessed Sorceress Edea and the many conflicts with SeeD, rallied the resistance factions and remaining Timber military to their cause and set out on a crusade to reverse what the Sorceress War nearly two decades ago did.
Barely six months after Ultimecia was defeated, the world was at war again.

Balamb Garden and SeeD, originally intending to remain neutral in the matter, the route Esthar took, were called upon by the the Timber resistance factions after SeeD's contract with the Forest Owls was leaked. Unable to back out of the all-encompassing "until Timber's independence", Squall and his comrades were washed into the escalating conflict with Galbadia. Galbadia Garden, barely re-established, allied itself with Galbadia unconditionally, pitting SeeD against SeeD, the casualties beginning to rise massively.

And under the surface, a new threat is beginning to rise, a threat that will not only put many lives in danger, but change the world forever.



The team of SLH promises to deliver the highest of quality in sprite ass detail.


Latest Blog

BiWeekly Update No.2 - 2/3/2022

Ok, so, I'm a little late on this one...but I just moved house, and I think most people would struggle to maintain regular productivity during a move.

Key in-engine updates:


- The first two sections of Part 1 are fully greyboxed. The locations this covers are: Deling City, Balamb Garden, Balamb Town, and Dollet. I am currently working on greyboxing Winhill fully, it's around 60% done. The remaining sections required/not touched for Part 1 are Timber and a few dungeons, though dungeons in general I'm doing less greyboxing for since I'm not using references.
- Rough gameplay elements for these are also in place, but they are not priority.
- At about halfway through the overall story for Part 1, the scenario takes about an hour and a half to run through.

With general progress updates out of the way, I'd like to discuss a couple of design decisions.

1 : Lore Expansion

A very key angle I have aimed for with SLH is to not unmake any established lore that FF8 provides. While I was writing collaboratively for the game over the past few years, I saw a lot of people going for the angle of 'I can fix it', rewriting key aspects that they deemed 'poorly done'.

I've never really agreed with this take, because I don't think FF8's lore is poorly done. Perhaps not entirely well presented in places, but the game is also not forthcoming with information -- it must be sought.

The only real 'rewrite' I have done is changing the Poison element to Dark, and switching up some of the GF oppositions to suit.

So coming into writing SLH as a whole, I instead try to ask what supposed 'gaps' I can fill in naturally, adhering to conventions established in game. These are things like each city's main exports, plotting out unestablished but inferred smaller towns and unexplored dungeon areas. Which brings us to the game's second dungeon: The Old Timber Mill.

Profile

The Old Timber Mill saw around 70 years of continuous use, with operation even continuing during the Galbadian occupation at first. However, the Galbadian regime became suspicious of it being used as a Resistance hub, and its operation was violently shut down, with the wood logged from Timber's forests instead being moved and processed through a Galbadian built and controlled facility. The old building still stands, unused, though rumours have long circulated through Resistance members that there may be a secret way in and out of the city in the building.

Needing to seek access to Timber but lacking a clear path from the south east, Rinoa's group seek the abandoned facility for this very reason.

Gameplay

The Timber Mill is a puzzle-based dungeon, though it has been occupied by monsters and animals during its years abandoned and will have encounters. The area must be explored thoroughly to find and open the secret passage that will allow progress into Timber.

2 : Player Character - Seifer Almasy

Seifer's inclusion as a playable cast member has long been decided, though not discussed at length on this game page. During the aforementioned period of writing collaboratively for FF8, I met a number of people well-versed in Seifer, and came to more deeply appreciate him as a character. Looking at SLH's overall plot, upping his involvement to playable became an easy decision. And in that same vein, I am treating his inclusion the same way the original promotional materials treated him -- his story is of equal footing and importance as Squall and Rinoa's. SLH gives me an opportunity to explore their relationships to each other, and how each has coped with the aftermath of the original game.


Brief Rundown


Following the defeat of Ultimecia, the brainwashing that had taken place in Deling City was lifted. Ingrid Deling, Vinzer's successor and the new president, demanded immediate extradition of Seifer Almasy for war crimes. However, Garden rebuked the demand, refusing to turn him over and instead claiming he was Garden's responsibility. The debate was still in place the war reignited, and thus has been left at the wayside...for now, at least.
Seifer's actions and movements are carefully monitored, but he has relative freedom of movement and agency within Garden and occasionally outside, provided he is escorted. However, events of SLH have resulted in Seifer not only being locked up in the disciplinary hold...but breaking out of it. Again. Naturally, the circumstances will become clear during the game.

Design
(You can view his design in the images tab)
In terms of Seifer's design, I knew I wanted a few key elements:

- Some kind of hood
- Some elements of armor or medieval 'knight'
- Maintain the original palette

Which the final design manages to accomplish. The back silhouette invokes the profile of a medieval knight's attire, along with keeping Seifer's symbol and trademark white coat. The hood is present to hide his face/identity, though he was unable to fully let go of his trademark colours. Portions of the boots were inspired by the Bodyguard's Attire from Final Fantasy XIV, which I felt was an appropriate point of reference given the gear's clear Seifer inspiration.

On that note, Squall's design is not inspired by the Allegiance gear, though it looks like it. I'll probably talk about FFXIV: Shadowbringers in another blogpost, because while SLH's story has not changed at all in response, you'll definitely find similar plot points in both games.

Gameplay

Seifer's main specialties are damage and enmity. Although he has high STR, his focus on group damage means he's less about boss focus (especially in his early kit) and more about crowd control. As a tank, Seifer's enmity generation is a Provoking move which raises his enmity level to max and bottoms out the rest of the party's, so if not serving as the sole tank, it's best he goes second.
Seifer has a few drawbacks - his base kit is elemental leaning, with several moves using Fire-based attacks. He is also not a proficient magic user, instead using chi-based energy to create magic-like effects, and therefore has the lowest number of GFEs he can link with.

Another drawback to Seifer is that his kit starts out with no self-sustain and lower defensive stats, so he relies on the party healer keeping a close eye on him and regular refreshing of his enmity draw. Later on he gets more of his own self-sustain (or can be bolstered with the Alexander GFE), though he'll still need healer support if not using a curative GFE.

What's this about 'secondary tank'?

Although not relevant to the first part of the game, the game mechanics and kits are, naturally, being developed for the game as a whole. From Part 2 onwards, you'll have access to a Reserve Party that can be subbed in at any point during combat, if you so wish. There'll be several benefits to this, least of which being able to have flexibility regarding elemental weaknesses and playstyles on the fly.

Alright, so that's all from me this fortnight. Hopefully I'll be able to pick up the pace again now that the move is (mostly) finished, though I won't have access to my main computer til tomorrow.

Ciao~



  • Production
  • 0 of 3 episodes complete
  • Puddor
  • RPG Maker MZ
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  • 05/17/2012 01:00 PM
  • 03/12/2022 05:35 PM
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Posts

Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
I have no idea 8D

To be honest, a great deal of the plot is based around that saying. It is never referred to in game, besides the fact Squall says he admires lions for their strength and pride whilst explaining the origin of his ring. In fact, Rinoa states that he's already like that, so the sleeping part remains a mystery.

The term 'Sleeping Lion Heart', however, is engraved onto the back of every Squall necklace sold, and apparently used in promotional art.

So what brings about this term, and why is it important or relevant to Squall? That's what this game covers, and why this game has 'Sleeping Lion Heart' as its subtitle.
Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
ehehehe :>
Hi,

I follow this project since a long time now and today i decided to share my feelings about it.

So first, i want to congratulate you for the quality of the screens you provide.
One of the hardest things in a fangame is to respect the original universe and, being a big fan of FF8, i can tell you it's a pleasure to instantly recognize some of FF8 locations, Deling city, Winhill and it 's amazing to see the level of accuracy you reached with caraway's office for example.
Keeping such a degree of quality with all location must be horribly time eating but results are here.

The characters design
One of the thing i liked is the new design you put on quistis, selphie and rinoa; what i mean is that they are easily recognizable but you put some slightly changes, a "personnal touch" and it's good because even if the
characters remain globaly the same they had a little evolution in their clothes; sadly, this brings me to Squall...
What are those clothes ? Seems the best FF hero of all times have been replaced by a boyscout. I know this sounds very superficial, and maybe a little ridiculous to say that my favourite hero will no more be my favourite hero
without his badass clothes, after all Squall is cool in every situation (except maybe if you oblige him to disguise in girl like squaresoft do it for the poor cloud) but he's not (in my opinion) as cool as he was in FF8.
When i was imagining a sequel of FF8, i was imagining very minor changes in Squall's design just like what they did in the kingdom heart series, some minor changes but keep the essence of the character (as you did it with selphie quistis and rinoa)
After, maybe there is a story related reason for that outfit, maybe in the war against galbadia squall has to sneak
in galbadia for a mission and is forced to wear normal clothes to avoid to be recognized (because i suppose fight the entire galbadia army and save the world in FF8 may have granted him a kind of notoriety or at least a basic physical description among galbadian soldiers). If it's the case, i hope he will retrieve very quickly his classic style after that (i saw in some screens you nicely designed his classic outfit, so i've good hope).

Just my feelings about that but it's your game and it's important you do it the way you want it to be
(don't know if it's gramatically correct)


I've also read your squall's character analysis.
Very good work.
Hope his relation with Rinoa will not affect him too much after FF8.
In the end of FF8 Squall was a little more open but just a little, i hope he will remains like this, not more talkative than needed, cynical and follower of inner monologues.

Scenario

A war is always a good base for a story, FF8 started like this and it's not a surprise to see his sequel begin the same way.
I saw in one of your posts you won't Succumb to the temptation of the irrealist but popular fanfic theory R=U and that's another good point for you.
You don't talk us about the disciplinary comitee, one of the thing i found disappointing in FF8 was to never fight seifer raijin and Fujin in an epic 3vs3 battle, will we have something like that in SLH ?
Will they be playable ?

System
You decide to evolve the GF junction system, i liked it but it was really overpowered for somebody who knows what he is doing so you took a good decision, and you justify it in the story so it's good.
Just pay attention to the Mp costs of the spells (an old and still painfull memory of FF4)

The title screen you made is awesome and the music you choose is just perfect, calm and a bit sad,
very adapted to a game based on Squall.

So i'll end this already too long post with this: i really hope you will lead your project to his term,
i wish you a very good luck and no pressure but you are the last hope of a lot of people to someday play a good FF8 sequel


Another FF8 fan






Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
Your username made me smile, a good way for me to start in the morning.

Squall's outfit is his undercover guise and he dons, like you said, a slightly altered version of his original later in the game.

author=SeeD41269
After, maybe there is a story related reason for that outfit, maybe in the war against galbadia squall has to sneak
in galbadia for a mission and is forced to wear normal clothes to avoid to be recognized (because i suppose fight the entire galbadia army and save the world in FF8 may have granted him a kind of notoriety or at least a basic physical description among galbadian soldiers). If it's the case, i hope he will retrieve very quickly his classic style after that (i saw in some screens you nicely designed his classic outfit, so i've good hope).

This is close to the mark, not entirely there but I won't spoil.

The orange/blue/black combo is actually based on the outfit he wore during Orphanage flashback scenes in the original game.

Like I've clarified with Selphie and Rinoa, I have certain design goals regarding character design and you're right abut Squall not entirely fitting them.

For reference, this is his Orphanage outfit:



And this is one of a lot of different concepts and designs that Squall's been through, I'm still not fully settled. He'll be keeping his jacket, but I don't know how much/how little else will carry over, what will change, what other design elements I want to incorporate...orz


So don't fret too much about that aspect!

In terms of the Disciplinary Committee, in short they're not plot relevant. You're probably aware, but Seifer, Fujin and Raijin moved to Balamb and have nothing to do with Garden any more, and as a result nothing really involves them with the story. I would like to bring them in at some stage, and there is some leg room (plus I want to share an interesting factoid about Seifer), so we'll see how that pans out.
If we go by Caz's way of thinking, shirtless Squall is the best design for Squall. I feel like agreeing for some reason.....
Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
I'd agree if not for the fact that I have a great deal of respect for Squall.
If Cloud can survive hyperthemia in the northern crater with a turtleneck, shirtless tshirt...I highly doubt Squall needs one.
If it can help for choosing among the concepts and designs you made, look for those elements:
- biker style
- Black/Dark grey, white, for global colors
- some minor reference to griever/lions

Thats the essence of squall's style in all his apparitions.


"In terms of the Disciplinary Committee, in short they're not plot relevant. You're probably aware, but Seifer, Fujin and Raijin moved to Balamb and have nothing to do with Garden any more, and as a result nothing really
involves them with the story."

warning spoilers
Indeed, i'm aware, FF8 ending show us seifer, raijin and fujin fishing together, Seifer seems to have move along and retrieve peace with his friends, enjoying little things, far from his twisted dream, and from his past misconducts. Some kind of redemption.

" Squall and his comrades were washed into the escalating conflict with Galbadia. Galbadia Garden, barely re-established, allied itself with Galbadia unconditionally, pitting SeeD against SeeD, the casualties beginning to
rise massively."

That could have been the perfect occasion to bring them back, If this war is so tough, Squall will quickly be in need of good warriors (don't know about you but during FF8, one of the tings i was constantly thinking was "hey, Are squall and co the only capable SeeDs in all the BGU ? Because everybody constantly ask him to do all the work. Why Other SeeDs are paid for? Playing cards and walk endlessly in the parking wing?"), and who can fits this role better than Seifer who is at least as tough as Squall
This also could have been a great occasion to exploit some traits of their personnality:

-No doubt Squall will be reluctant to go to his old rival and ancient ennemy for help, but Squall always do what is necessary to accomplish his missions objectives, and if that means overcome his own pride to get a powerfull ally
to increase his chances to get the job done, he 'll do it.

-Seifer also will be reluctant (but will feel flattered, even if he will never admitt it), and with his nasty temper will probably refuse, just to annoy his old rival. After that Squall (who is somebody relatively clever)
could use Seifer's pride against him to force him to accept; something like:
Squall talking to Rinoa and Zell: "You see, i said it, i know he would refuse. After all, a long time whithout fighting, he's not a warrior anymore, he don't have what we need to win this war"
Seifer: "hey, who are you thinking you're talking to ? I still beat anybody, anytime"
Squall:"Prove it"
or something like that, there are so much possibilities...
That way seifer could have fight in the good side for change, continuing his evolution, redemption then rehabilitation ( and i don't even talk about the potentiality of funny dialogues between those two, who can't bear
each other despite their mutual and unspoken respect)

But even if we haven't something like that, the simple perspective to see them again, even if they're not involved in the global plot is already a good news.
Caz
LET'SBIAN DO THIS.
6318
We all know Balamb Garden was just a clever front to make me run around in circles after some child, cursing him for not giving me his Mog card.
Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
The fact remains that despite the truth being that Seifer and Squall are most definitely more or less equal in terms of fighting strength, and Fujin and Raijin can hold up with the best of them, the three are not SeeD, and if I recall correctly you need to have passed the SeeD exam by 18 in order to still qualify for it. Or it may be twenty-one, but thinking about it I'm semi-sure it's eighteen.

Which is the reason Seifer basically flipped his shit over not passing during the game, because it was something like his 3rd attempt (I think he took the exam originally with Quistis at fifteen) and not passing that final time meant he would never be a SeeD.

This is the reason there's an age gap between Seifer and Squall; Squall took his at seventeen just in case he failed it (the exam has a high fail rate, as you can see), and passed, so he, unlike Seifer, gained a SeeD rank and forever cemented their rivalry.

Balamb Town, however, is a harbour town on an island that holds one of the sources of SeeD forces. If carefully planned a strike on the town could gain them direct access to the school (provided they don't fly away again).

That is most likely the way Seifer and co. will end up involved again, since despite not being born there, Balamb is their home, and they'll want to defend it.

They won't be playable. They were in the long forgotten first iteration of this game, but that was quite different and there were other reasons and avenues for their involvement. A secondary (and essentially arbitrary, but key nevertheless) reason is that I am already tasked with animating a very large cast (there are technically 5 guest members throughout the duration of this game, along with the 7-8 mains ). An additional three would cause massive headaches on my part, so they're being left out.

As much as people would like me too, I can't cover and explore every single aspect of Final Fantasy VIII's characters and world. Even I'd like to go into some things that I can't, and are being left out for the sake of focus and direction in terms of plot flow.

If something does come up in the plot, you can guarantee I'll go into it as in-depth as a I can, but otherwise it may get skipped over or ignored completely.

@Caz: that and queuing for hotdogs

I was believing the age limits were 15-21 but a quick look on FF wiki and :
"SeeD candidates must be between 15 years to 19 years old. At 20, they can no longer apply.They have to pass a written exam, a field exam, and they have to be accepted by the Headmaster." so i was wrong

" it was something like his 3rd attempt (I think he took the exam originally with Quistis at fifteen) and not passing that final time meant he would never be a SeeD"

Yeah Shu hint that it was not his first attempt in the boat before dollet mission but this: "it was something like his 3rd attempt (I think he took the exam originally with Quistis at fifteen)" is very interesting, never though
about that but you're probably right, they're both 18 in ff8 meaning they were probably together when quistis had her exam at 15. Thank you for pointing that to me.
*EDIT* : I've rethough about this and now i doubt it, i'll explain why.
Extract of an the garden entry in game:"After demonstrating sufficient ability under Garden’s instruction and receiving a campus’s approval, students
15-19 years old are eligible for graduation"
so even if taking part in the seed exam at 15 is theorically posssible, it's not a rule. In various sources, Quistis is presented like a gifted and precocious student and it's a well known fact in BGU she succeed her exam at 15.
We all know Squall and Seifer are also skilled and talented, if i recall correctly
the game also hint us both of them are the best pupils of academy and despite this
Squall, who is 17, try the seed exam for the first time in ff8. Why? In my opinion
It's because his specialty is gunblade, one of the most difficult weapon to master; that's why he attempts the seed exam so late, his training should have been longer. Same thing for Seifer, Xu (Shu in french) hint us in game it was not his first attempt but as talented seifer is, i doubt his first attempt was with quistis at 15. Probably at 17 like squall, or maybe 16 but in my opinion not 15

"Balamb Town, however, is a harbour town on an island that holds one of the sources of SeeD forces. If carefully planned a strike on the town could gain them direct access to the school (provided they don't fly away again).
That is most likely the way Seifer and co. will end up involved again, since despite not being born there, Balamb is their home, and they'll want to defend it."

Really Love your idea. It's Very good because that mean Seifer will not be involved just for pride reasons, or to prove himself; but to defend something, and not because somebody ask him to do it, but because he wants to do it; that suits perfectly with the redemption idea from FF8 ending and in some way it's not very far from his original dream (protect a witch). Seriously it's perfect.

"They won't be playable. They were in the long forgotten first iteration of this game, but that was quite different and there were other reasons and avenues for their involvement. A secondary (and essentially arbitrary, but key nevertheless) reason is that I am already tasked with animating a very large cast (there are technically 5 guest members throughout the duration of this game, along with the 7-8 mains ). An additional three would cause massive headaches on my part, so they're being left out."

I perfectly understands that, considering the quality you put in all your arts, a single char must already be a big work, so 7-8 must be a nightmare.

"As much as people would like me too, I can't cover and explore every single aspect of Final Fantasy VIII's characters and world. Even I'd like to go into some things that I can't, and are being left out for the sake of focus and direction in terms of plot flow.

If something does come up in the plot, you can guarantee I'll go into it as in-depth as a I can, but otherwise it may get skipped over or ignored completely."

Don't worry about that, you do not have to explore or justify everything; FF8 itself has a lot of unexplained things and it's one of the reason this game is so fascinating and so much people continue to talk about it today.
Focus on the story you want to tell, and the things you want to explore, players will enjoy your game the same way.
In my opinion the FF8 universe is in good hands with you.

Keep up your good work and see you soon for news.

Caz
LET'SBIAN DO THIS.
6318
Gonna play this and GET ME SOME HOTDOGS.
There's a bug that I found, when you clear the map and you receive the elixir it just keeps going in a loop.
author=mmarage
There's a bug that I found, when you clear the map and you receive the elixir it just keeps going in a loop.
It's been fixed already. Download the demo again.
author=Noel_Kreiss
author=mmarage
There's a bug that I found, when you clear the map and you receive the elixir it just keeps going in a loop.
It's been fixed already. Download the demo again.


I did, like about thirty minutes ago, I think it's the most current version of it, I'll double check to see if there isn't a second demo and I accidentally got the old version.
Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
It should say 'non announced upload' on the download page, eheh. Turns out I missed one of said events when I reuploaded the first time on the map outside the Presidential Palace.

The reupload also gets rid of the first title screen, so only the correct one appears.
author=SorceressKyrsty
It should say 'non announced upload' on the download page, eheh. Turns out I missed one of said events when I reuploaded the first time on the map outside the Presidential Palace.

The reupload also gets rid of the first title screen, so only the correct one appears.


It's the place where you go north after facing an event with eight guards right? Yeah, that's where I experienced the bug. ^^'
Puddor
if squallbutts was a misao category i'd win every damn year
4957
Yep, I've fixed it in the current download. If you want to avoid it (in the second download), just clear a map besides that one to get the bonus Elixir; the event is present on a few other maps, too, even if you don't get the initial tutorial indicator.