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Custom Content FTW!

Hey guys,

So I thought I'd update you all on what's been happening with FE as there are a lot of cool things on the horizon. First off, Ness has been kind enough to provide me with some nice custom facesets (Epoch's is my current avatar picture). I know she has been really busy with other things, so it means a lot that she is doing this for me.

In addition to custom facesets, Quetzalcoatl, aka Alex Amana, is also composing an original soundtrack for my game. He has already completed a few songs, one of which you can listen to on this site:


He is a really talented musician and a solid guy, and I am looking forward to implementing his music into my game. I probably won't have my entire game be custom music, simply because there are a number of songs in the current version that I like way too much to let go (and also, I don't expect Alex to make me 42 brand new songs to replace the old ones).

Alright, custom content aside, progress has been at a steady pace, but it should increase dramatically once I get out of school for the summer. Basically, I'm doing what I did before, and mainly focusing on implementing the major cutscenes and setting up new towns and dungeons. Battle stuff is usually the last thing I do. However, I did change up Lee's skills a little. Instead of being able to absorb an infinite number of enemy skills and literally becoming an unstoppable god, I've changed it so he can only absorb up to 5. If exceeds that number, he will have to choose a skill that he wants to let go. The max number of skills he can hold can be increased, but I'm still trying to figure out how I want to go about doing that. That aside, Lyonell Manor is nearing completion (finally) and I've begun work on the Northern Continent and all of its locales.

There is one cutscene in particular that I've been looking forward to creating for a long time. It's a scene that's been on my mind for well over a year now, and I'm really excited to finally be starting work on it. It has the potential to be one of those scenes that truly hooks players in and doesn't let go until the final credits roll. Here is a screenshot from said scene:

I also have a few questions I want to ask you all:

1). For the party system, would you prefer for the members who are not currently being used to still get full experience from battles or does that make it too easy? I want to encourage replay value, but I also don't want to make it a pain in the ass if your are forced to use other characters. I'm pretty against having them gain zero experience while not in the party, but perhaps 50% or something?

2). Some of you may have noticed that the Monster Notebook I showed off in the screenshots section wasn't included in the current version of the demo. I've been trying to decide whether it is really necessary at all, seeing as its absence didn't seem to bother too many people. Here are the pros and cons:


You can easily see a list of every monster captured/scanned, what abilities they have, and where the can be located. It may also help in planning if there is a specific monster with a certain ability you want to use in a later battle.


I will have to spend more of my time making it. I could just make a dumbed down version, but that's still time I could be spending doing other things.

If you all want it, then I will do it. It's up to you.

3). I've heard a number of things about battle difficulty. Some are saying it's too easy, while others are saying it's just right. I don't really plan to change any of the old battles too much, but I do want to plan for the future ones. All I know about is what people have mentioned in reviews. If you've played the game, what did you think of the battles? Were you challenged at all? I just want to gauge how quickly I should increase the difficulty level before proceeding.

Well, that's about it for now. Thanks for reading and please comment and throw me some feedback!


Demo Updated: Version 1.1

Alright, so I just went ahead and updated the current demo and fixed up a few things:

- fixed all of the bugs and glitches that have been brought to my attention as well as a few others I discovered myself
- further decreased the file size to below 100 MB! Woohoo! I finally figured out a good method for getting rid of all of my unnecessary files.
- edited the insides of some of the earlier buildings (Levantia/Lelon/Desert Ruins) to match the quality of later areas of the game. This is something I meant to do before but didn't because I was sick of working on the game.
- added a recipe for Goldo that will allow him to learn the Scan Crystal ability
- fixed some of the typos and minor grammar errors; I'm sure it isn't completely perfect yet, but it is better.

These are most of the major fixes. There are a few other minor things I can't remember, but you probably won't even notice them anyway. For those who have already downloaded the old version, your save file is compatible with the new version if you want the most up-to-date copy. However, if you have already beaten it, there really isn't any reason to re-download the game unless you plan to play it again in the future.



Back to work

Alright, so I think I'm finally starting to feel capable of working on this some more. I've made some nice progress this weekend mapping some of the Northern Continent. Here's the screenshot if you haven't already seen it:

I'm also getting some work done on Lyonell Manor, which is a dungeon Epoch treads through in conjunction to Lee's scenario from the demo. I'm finishing up the NPCs and shops in Namu Station, as well as a pretty sweet cutscene that occurs on the train ride. It's still not quite how I want it, but it's looking pretty damn good.

Mapping the Northern Continent and its towns and dungeons will be a big challenge for me. I plan for the Kingdom of Dorent to be quite large, so I will try to tackle that bits at time. I may also just jump ahead and work on some of the later cutscenes I already have planned so I can focus on other things. And I've got some plans for some pretty awesome cutscenes!

Oh yeah, one other thing. I've got some really cool ideas for some new special character abilities. I don't want to give away any of the really juicy details, but I'll just say that Cyrus' has to do with his alcoholism, and Slade's has to do with an evil power inside him. Anyway, stay tuned!


A Rut

Hey guys,

I know some of you have wanted me to blog more frequently on game progress. In truth, I would, if I had much progress to report. Sadly, I haven't had much motivation lately to work on this. I think this is for a number of reasons:

1. I'm still pretty burnt out from all of the work I did on the game over winter break. I know it was almost two months ago, but I seriously worked on it non-stop for basically three weeks. Truthfully, the demo I released wasn't quite the version I had planned; it ended a bit earlier than I wanted and some cutscenes were left out. However, by that time, I couldn't stand working on it any longer.

2. School work, of course. Isn't it always? I have a pretty tough semester this time around so it hasn't given me a whole lot of free time. However, even when I do have time, I still find myself unable to make any decent progress.

There are a few other things that have been bothering me as well. The overwhelming amount of work I have left to do on the game is one. Truthfully, this project is pretty ambitious, and I'm not sure if I can finish it by myself. I've thought about getting outside help, but I have pretty high standards, and I'm not sure if anyone would be willing to put in the time to help me finish this. I've tried getting assistance a few times in the past but with little success.

The other thing on my mind is the game's popularity. I don't know if this game will ever get as popular as I wish it could be. I'm thinking along the lines of games like Demon Legacy, A Blurred Line, and Balmung Cycle, which have basically been played by damn near anyone interested in RPG maker games. I'm aware that my game isn't as original as these gems, and I suppose that is probably this game's greatest weakness. I began the project with a rather cliche concept while I was trying to learn how to use the system. In retrospect, I probably should have started from scratch rather than trying to improve a trite idea when I finally got it all figured out. Now, I can't go back and change it without rewriting the whole damn story and basically wasting away more hours on revising rather than on moving forward. Sadly, I fear that no matter how much creativity I throw into the story, that same old plot device will still turn players away from the game. I was really hoping I could get my game featured, but now I'm pretty sure that won't ever happen.

Sorry to drag on. I just wanted to share my thoughts with everyone since I didn't really have any game progress to report. I'm not going to ditch this project because I have put too many hours into it already. However, as of now, I am in a bit of a rut, both creatively and motivationally.


So anyway...

Yeah, I hate to beg for feedback, but it's been awhile now since I've released the demo and I haven't really gotten anything except one comment. I know some people have downloaded it, so I'm just wondering what you think about it. Is it an improvement? How is the monster capture system working? Etc.?

I'm not asking for a full review or anything, but if anyone has gotten a decent distance into it, let me know what you think. I worked my ass off on this so I'm gonna really anxious to hear what people think (even if it's negative).


Brand Spanking New Forever's End Christmas Demo (and is now approved!)

God, it feels good to finally have this ready. I've been working on this non-stop for the past week and a half, so I'm pretty burned out. Anyone who has played the last demo will definitely notice some pretty big changes, especially in the gameplay department. For that reason, there is a shit-ton more code than there was last time. Although I did an extremely thorough run-through, it is still possible that a bug may have slipped past me. Let me know, and I will fix it ASAP.

I've put a lot of work into this trying to fix all of the issues people had with before. There are a few areas I didn't get around to, and most of the NPCs in the final village don't say anything (but the demo basically ends near there anyway), but that aside, it shouldn't be anything substantial.

Anyway, I hope you all enjoy it and you have a Merry Christmas!


RM Tool

Hey guys, I've got a quick question.

Alright, so I am finished with the demo and I am trying to get rid of all of the unused sources. I am using the RM Tool, but I find I'm running into the same problem that I ran into last time. The stupid thing keeps deleting files that I am actually using. Last time I released a demo, I had to keep making new versions after people found certain files missing, and I don't really want to do that this time. Anyway, I just want to know if anyone else has had this problem, or if they have found a way around it. I could just do it myself, but it would take so long and it would be really easy to delete something I didn't know I used. Please, let me know so I can get this demo out ASAP. Thank you.


I've got a question for everyone...

So I've been really busy lately coding in the monster capture system and I've started to wonder...what do people think of this system? Here are the basics of it:

1. Use a scan crystal to scan a monster (which provides other benefits) to see what his respect level is and his diet.
2. The respect level is the level one of your party members must be in order for the capture to be a success.
3. The diet is the monster's favorite food and what you need to distract it.
4. Throw the food to the monster, they get distracted, then use a capture sphere to capture it.

You get rewards for capture all the monsters in a single area, and I'm also thinking about putting a mini-game in where you challenge other people and fight using the different monsters you've collected (but that's still in the early stages). Each monster has a special skill you can use in battle at anytime, so if a boss isn't weak against any of your standard techniques, it's possible a monster may have an ability of that type.

I think this adds some variety to battles and helps mix things up, while also adding a fun little sidequest. However, am I the only one who thinks this is a good idea? I haven't really gotten any feedback on it, and I'm wondering if it's a good idea. The coding is a total bitch and is extremely easy to make a mistake, so before I spend anymore time on trying to perfect this system, I wanna know what people think. Do you think it sounds cool and fun or totally stupid?


Monster Update

Hey everyone,

It's been awhile (again) since my last update. Don't worry, I've been pretty diligent as of late and have made some great progress. I have progressed a good bit further past the end of the first demo (finally) and have seriously cleaned up most of the parts people struggled with. I've compiled a list of issues that people have brought up in the eight reviews written (love you guys) and done my best to fulfill their requests. Here is the list with a percentage of completion:

Decrease Battle Difficulty - 90% - I say 90% simply because I haven't had anyone else test this new difficulty. I think it is sufficient, but then again I thought my last demo was too, so this won't be finished until I get some beta testers. Also, I know some of you were actually quite happy with the original difficulty, and I hope (if I can find the time) to make a "hard" difficulty with the old stats for those of you who want a challenge. But right now, the consensus was that I make it easier, so I need to focus on that first.

Make Battles Less Boring - 75% - The original gameplay is still there, with unique battle commands for each character and the ability to learn new magic abilities through heraldry books. The new gameplay mechanic involves monster hunting and acts as both a sidequest and a battle strategy. Basically, you capture monsters and use their abilities to aid you on the battlefield. I think it's a fun system, and I'm hoping no one thinks it's completely stupid (because it took forever to program correctly). Also, if you collect all the monsters in an area, you score some sweet items. If you want more detail, read the last blog. Also, I've programmed some new battle abilities for later allies and perfected some of the old ones. And a new Limit Break type of system.

Get Rid of the Retarded Overhangs - 95% - One big issue from the last demo was the overhangs which made it difficult to tell exactly where to go. I've done my best to get rid of all the ones that involve a direct path, and added rewards to those that are off the beaten path. I still need to do one last check through to make sure there aren't any more, but I will probably do that right before I release the next demo.

Mapping Errors - 50% - I still need to work on this one a bit. There are areas around the world map that you cannot walk on because of "invisible mountains" (damn autotile) and some overhangs (that go to treasures) need to be worked on.

Do Something About Those Royal Hunting Grounds - 80% - Courtesy of LittleWingGuy, I've got a brand spanking new Hunting Grounds that doesn't blow anymore. There are still a few areas that need to be cleaned up, but it's pretty much done.

Fix the Music Looping - 100% - Every MP3 has been edited so that it loops perfectly (or near perfect), so no more awkward moments of fading out.

Decrease File Size - 60% - I've used Diet MP3 to decrease the file size of each song in my game, and it has really helped. Songs originally at 4 mb are now between 1 and 1.5 mb. Some are actually under 1. This is a big deal to me because I know there are many people who passed by this game simply because of the enormous file size (and I don't blame you, it is pretty ridiculous). I still need to clean up other unused resources, but I will save that for the end.

Flesh Out the Other Major Characters, Besides Epoch - 30% - I haven't done much work on this, truthfully. I know what I want to do, but I'm kinda in tired of making cutscenes and going through the laborious task of getting every little aspect of it made perfectly. But I will do this, I promise.

Throw Out Those Recognizable Tunes (Cough* cough*...JENOVA....cough*) - 80% - So yeah, looking back I'm not really sure what I was thinking with some of the song choices. Some were just way too recognizable and took away from the experience, so I've done my best to replace the really noticeable ones. There are still some I'm sure people will know, but it shouldn't detract from the overall experience. If I have to, I'll switch those out too.

Change Epoch, He's Too Blue! - 100% - Thanks to everyone's feedback on the screenshot forum, I think I've finally gotten a good look for our protagonist. I've already implemented his new animations into every battle and character set (which took a lot longer than you might think), so your eyes shouldn't bleed anymore every time you look at him.

Improve Villains - 90% - Some people mentioned that certain villains seemed a bit too cheesy and juvenile. I believe this has been remedied, though I will do one last check before next release.

Improve Introduction and Make It Skippable - 100% - Done.

Fixing Enemy Encounters - 50% - So I'm in the process of switching the regular encounters with something akin to Cyber Factor, where you approach an enemy, they start chasing you, and eventually stop, and if you attack while their stopped, you can get the jump on them. I'm trying to think of something else to spice it up, but nothing has come to mind yet.

Changed the Confirm Sound - 100% - Done.

So that's about where I am now. There a whole bunch of other additional stuff I haven't mentioned, such as improved battle graphics (more animations) and such, but I think I've already made this blog long enough. I'm hoping to post a new demo by next RSD!, so I'm being diligent.

Oh and you may have noticed the old demo has been taken down. It's been up for nearly a year now and is extremely dated. 938 downloads is pretty good though!


Progress Report 3

Hey guys, it's been awhile since I've written anything so I thought I'd get you all up to date on what I've got cooking.

Besides fixing up all the problems people have had with the current demo (I'm still trying to fix up Royal Hunting Ground LWG), I've also been trying to implement new unique gameplay elements and to help make my game more unique. One thing that I've begun working on is a Monster Capture System. It was originally meant to be a simple sidequest that had you scan monsters and receive prizes. Truthfully, I felt something was missing and the concept seemed kind of bland. I've attempted expanded upon the original concept by having players scan monsters and then capture them to use in battle. Each monster has a unique ability which can be used to strengthen your party or damage your enemies. It's a different way to gain the upperhand on your foes; if your allies don't have any natural or magical skill that is effective against your opponent, you can call upon the aid of your captured monsters to help you win the battle. I've tried to find ways to add a challenge to monster capturing. Here's what I have so far:

Food Type - using a scan crystal, you can study a foe's strengths and weaknesses. However, that's not all. You can also gain info into the types of food they eat. Once you've figured out their specific diet, you can throw their favorite food to them to distract them, then capture them with a Capture Sphere. It's kind of a mix between Pokemon and Chocobo hunting. There's going to be a wide variety of baits and food to use. For example, some monsters will only eat a specific kind of meat while others will be satisfied with any kind of meat.

Respect Level - however, before you even need to start worrying about bait, you'll have to make sure the level of one of your party members matches or surpasses the Respect Level of the monster. Basically, monsters won't accept food from those they find weak. This will prevent players from capturing a super powerful monster early game and wiping out the opposition.

That's all I have so far for that. I also plan on making prizes for the number of different monsters captured and also creating a tournament where you can only use the skills of your monsters against the skills of your opponent's monsters. Anyway, I'm hoping this sidequest will help spice up the gameplay and prevent it from being a boring grind session (that's the plan, at least).

Monster stuff aside, another area I've been working on is the character battle animations. Now I know there wasn't really anything technically "wrong" with the current demo's character sets but I thought I'd improve upon it by making animations smoother and more fluid. It's kinda hard to explain so you'll just have to wait and see what I mean ;)

I've also changed some of the in-game music and character themes to help better match the dark undertone of the story's plot. I got rid of a few notable songs (*cough JENOVA *cough) and replaced them with songs that are lesser known but just as powerful. I've also condensed the size of most of my music files which will cut the amount of space my game takes up by at least half.

Probably the area I've slacked the most on is the plot advancement. I know where I want to go and for the most part how I want to get there, but there are a few plot points that I'm struggling to make cohesive. That's not to say I haven't made any progress, it's just not as much as I had hoped.

Anyway, that's about it for now, I'm going to continue to expand upon the monster system (hopefully, this sounds interesting to you, the reader), and finish the animations. Once I've progressed further in the story, I plan to release another demo, just because my current one is extremely dated and a fellow maker suggested I update it (you know who you are, dhm). Sorry to ramble on. Thanks for reading and keep checking back for more updates!