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Plush Toy! <3 Concessions and a indie band <3

To start off with... WHAAAA OMG!!! <3



It perfectly feeds my delusional fantasy on hitting the big time, cuddly toys lining the shelves in Toys "R" us. Hopefully it'll motivate me to finish this godforsaken game. Wish I did something like this for The Lost Girls. :(

Back to reality

I'm sorry to inform my subscribers and passing blog clickers I'll be dropping one of my major features, I've decided to scrap randomly generated events. The reason revolves around general pacing of gameplay and not becoming a disjointed catastrophe of biblical proportions. Also would've added another year of development to get it right and I'll have to rejig my game profile at some point so it won't come across as misleading. Sorry :(

Available Equipment.

I've also decided to cut the number of weapons from eight down to five.



The only reason in regards to making said decision was the sense that the extra three weapons felt way too similar and ended up somewhat pointless compared to the rest of the arsenal, saying that I might incorporate a bazooka at some stage. If you took a glance and wondered why there isn't any melee weapons in the initial lineup... Umm, well the thing is, there isn't any in the game. The problem cropped up during the prototyping stage where they came across as totally useless against enemies and caused confusion with the mouse aiming. In order to incorporate them would've meant a total revamp in the core gameplay and create something quite rpg makerie equaling something remarkably boring in comparison. I must admit the cock up is incredibly embarrassing for a survival horror game, but if I find a loophole I'll definitely go crazy with a machete :3

Control scheme.

WASD = Basic movement
E = Interact
Shift(Hold) = Aim
Left mouse = Attack
Ctrl(Hold) = Show Map
N/M = Change equipment
I = Shot injection/restores health
(Only applies if Syringe is equipped)

I've been thinking of changing the Shift button to toggle instead of the player holding it down, feels slightly unwieldy navigating with the WASD keys whilst aiming. On the same subject of movement, after so much playtesting I can't get back into playing games on RMN with the default Arrow keys, feels unnatural and somewhat awkward now.

Also you may notice the absence of a menu/pause key on the list, the purpose for it's exclusion is based on my design philosophy of maintaining player immersion throughout the game and the same rule applies to having hardily any cutscenes to cause interruption. Plus it'll be a disservice if you can pause whilst fighting, then again toilet breaks and real life issues may cause some trouble D:

Exploring buildings.

One of my the proudest achievements so far is interior exploration. Pictures speak louder than words in this case.

Hallway.

Enter room.

Door goes Kaboom!

There's so much potential in enemies breaking down doors chasing the player or adding unease approaching unexplored areas, it gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside. However it doesn't apply to dungeons because there's a lot more going on eventing wise and I don't want to cause lag. Creates a gameplay inconsistency and I know it'll be noticed by the player, at this stage I'll have to live with it.

The design principle behind Cover Your Eyes

When I first started development, my aim was to create a anti rpg maker horror game. I absolutely despised the emphasis upon a protagonist being a small helpless child/teenager with inappropriate outdoor clothing, walking around at a snail pace and getting absolutely wreaked by the slightest brush from a attacker. In response to the trend I went about making the player to be constantly on the move, able to defend herself in extreme circumstances and old enough to not be completely useless. However in response the enemies are just as fast and able to fight on a level playing field with the protagonist, one of my other dislikes was the fact you'll have to click enter on every tile without a visible prompt in order to find something of use or simply self narrating coming across a dustbin.

I doubt the game will end up being remotely scary and more akin to a horror themed action adventure but I do enjoy playing the game whilst bug hunting, hopefully I'm onto something there. At the moment I'm designing the final setpiece and eventual ending to the game just to get it out the way, to sum up it's sort of like a mixture between a Korean film, Kill bill and the ending to Hannibal season 2... Can't wait to see how players respond once it's released.

End credit song by The Bohemian Embassy




This was pretty awesome to pull off and adds a slight credibility towards being a professional game. I used to go to school with the violinist *Went to gig, got wreaked* and mentioned my gam mak which led to a very surreal phone call with the band manager. Basically felt like the equivalent to explaining your embarrassing sex life with a total stranger "Oh so are you developing some sort of app then... What the fuck is RPG maker?"

Anyhow to sign off.

Things I'm proud of.

* Nailed the gameplay mechanics.
* Character animations.
* Interaction pop ups.
* The visual aspect on entering and exiting rooms.
* Aiming regeneration. Might be a first in game design.
* No bugs. (That I know of)
* Enemy AI.
* In-game pop up Map.
* Collaborating with a indie band.
* The save point system.
* Collecting ammo.
* Mouse aiming. Gibmaker <3
* Wonderful artwork. Puddor <3
* Soundtrack. Dingaling <3
* Superb choice of commissioners. <3 <3 <3
* Doesn't actually feel like a rpgmaker game.

Stuff I'm facepalming about.

* Procrastinating all the time.
* No melee weapons.
* Houses look too samey.
* Still haven't gotten around to enemy design.
* Besides the introduction and ending, everything else feels like filler.
* Noticeable lag in certain areas. Need to make some concessions.
* Looks remarkably generic.
* No reloading mechanic.
* Ditching random events. Probably for the best.
* Amount of graphics that need doing.
* Fear for the game getting slaughtered by critics.
* Too much emphasis on gameplay over story.
* Variety of weapons.
* Jarring room tint changes I need to redo.
* Can't implement a lighting system without creating serious lag.
* Haven't gotten round to creating tension nor scares.
* Unable to pick up arrows after using them.
* Developed a drinking problem. :(
* No trailer.
* The room mechanic doesn't apply to dungeons.
(Creates gameplay inconsistency)
* Can't foresee a release date.

Maybe I'm being too hard on myself /o\


Posts

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Wait... so it's mostly done, and you're now planning to release it commercially pretty soon; yet you still don't have a demo and apparently aren't planning to release one. Given your track record with games so far, and the reception games made in our engine typically receive on the commercial stage, refusing this last chance for feedback is practically suicidal.
I honestly have no idea where you've got that from haha. To be fair I constantly underestimate the release date, like sure if I do eight hours a day it'll done by October.

But to be realistic I do have other commitments besides sitting on the computer all day. Due to the lack of demo I am planning on giving a build to roughly ten game savvy developers in the next few months, at the moment I am sending it out to two people for constant feedback so that's always a plus.

And what on earth do you mean by my track record? One cancelled game I may go back to someday, one game I made in around a month as a concept and one game I made in four hours!? I'm really confuddled by your assumption O.o
Well, the way you had that list at the end sounded very definitive, almost like a post-mortem, and so I assumed most of it is done. Nevertheless, I really hope you're right about the people you're getting feedback from being enough to justify the lack of demo. Otherwise, you'll end like this game, which had no demo too. Here's the reception it got.

Sure, point taken about your previous games, but I think that going from one incomplete and two short games, neither of which was received well on here, to a full-fledged commercial game where it'll be judged by professional critics, many eager for blood, is a brave leap indeed. To be fair, I actually like a the trust of your blog, and really impressed at how you managed to have doors breaking down. Nevertheless, I do advise caution and extra care with development, because once it's out commercially, it's out, and any negative reception it might get early on, and you won't be able to scrub it out of existence.

As a counterpoint, here are two other RMN games that were released recently commercially on Metacritic. Both of them were received very well on here and their developers also had better track records. Right now, one is a semi-success story with decent Metascore and sales. The other one was hit by a bad review early on, and gathered fewer attention in spite of being released earlier.

TLDR: I do hope this gets is finished and is good, but I also want to summarise better the degree of competition out in the commercial world.
Like I said before, this is what can easily happen to RMN games even with established developers
Heya thanks for the well written reply =)

The list at the end is mostly aimed as a reminder on my current insecurities in this stage of development and fundamentally how I'm going to tackle them from here on out. If anything the blog post is mostly written for myself and how I feel about the game so far, hence why it may appear as a post-mortem. Meanwhile the plush toy is irreverent and typical "I'm awesome, plz sub!" showing off. :P

Sure, point taken about your previous games, but I think that going from one incomplete and two short games, neither of which was received well on here, to a full-fledged commercial game where it'll be judged by professional critics, many eager for blood, is a brave leap indeed. To be fair, I actually like a the trust of your blog, and really impressed at how you managed to have doors breaking down. Nevertheless, I do advise caution and extra care with development, because once it's out commercially, it's out, and any negative reception it might get early on, and you won't be able to scrub it out of existence.

Well from the outside perspective it does come across as somewhat odd and ill advise jumping in the deep end and into the big bad world, especially in regards to my previous output.

But back then I more or less treated game development in a "hobbyist" mindset e,g making stuff up as I went along, blitzing through development with total disregard for polish and not looking at the players point of view nor enjoyment factor that makes a game worth playing. Replaying through them all now, it's remarkably embarrassing how they turned out in the end. However after going back and replaying my cancelled project not long ago, I've actually forgotten how awesome the development process was. Despite all it's flaws, there were plenty of "Oh wow" moments and along with a kickass premise. It's something I yearn to go back and reboot someday.

Before starting development on Cover your eyes, I remember having a discussion with NewBlack back when the control scheme was Arrow keys to move and Space bar to fire prior to the mouse aiming and custom movement. What really stood out with our correspondence was the simple statement "Are you making a indie game or something cobbled together in rpgmaker?" and that was a massive epiphany moment for me.

With regards to me being honest throughout the blog post about my current fears and faults at this point. Simply boils down to me growing out of making lofty/exaggerated promises on features and telling little white lies about it's overall development especially on the commercial side of RMN.

For example in The Dark Stone's case, they portray themselves as a small gaming studio but when you take a look at the game and the reviews, it's blatantly obvious to be one guy stuck in his room. Comes across as totally disingenuous, unless they're completely incompetent/lazy. Sure it may be different when it'll come down to the marketing side, but I realized RMN is not my target audience and is there to help nurture developers instead of being an egotistical dumping ground, hence the transparency.

Anyhow thank you again for responding. It definitely reinforced my conviction and I'll add you onto my feedback list sometime down the line \o/


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