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Progress Report

July 2017 Progress

For quite some time now, I was waiting to have certain steps done for an update on this. I fear for those who do not know me may have forgotten this little game I made and assumed it to be a just a relic of the past.

Cope Island is not dead. It's only gotten bigger and better.

In the past couple of years, I have had waves of distractions from this. Two jobs, immigrating my wife to USA and marrying her, personal life drama, Three Ghostly Roses, RMN event games and other fun stuff, and now just recently getting a dog.

It's much later than I expected or wanted, yet I could not be happier that it's taking me this long. I've learned tons over the past few years, especially with making Three Ghostly Roses. My vision for this island game is finally what I deem complete, all that's left for me is to make it.

Before, I had showed off a big update about the game. This may be alarming to some, but I scrapped that and began remaking the game from scratch. (with a lot of help from the previous build so it went fast) I learned enough from Three Ghostly Roses and other projects to see places that need clear improvements and well, I thought it was a good time to do so.

When I release Cope Island's new version, I don't want to find reasons to go and remake the game again. I want it to be done.

Now, this is actually the THIRD time I'm attempting this game. It's very early regarding maps done, but the data, audio, and most the graphics are quite complete. If I sit down and work at this a little everyday, I'd honestly be done in no time. Yet, that still does not distract from the fact that there's still a LOT to do.

I have 97% of the enemies and battle backgrounds to make, and about 97% of maps to make. None will take me long if I actually work on it. Which I certainly will now that my life is SOMEWHAT calming down. I have a very clear vision of what to make ahead of me.

I was waiting to have a little more UI and maps done before showing off my big new reveal, but I think I should post some teaser images nonetheless.

Those two are indeed very animated in game, I'll post the gifs eventually. The title has fog in game, but that looks better animated than still so I just showed the picture without it.

Early mockup of battle background and enemies. No UI yet as you can see.

I have a lot made for natural maps, but I'll show those once I have some maps done so it's not just a graphic test map.

I am highly considering making a whole new game page as soon as I have enough to show. The game has went through a drastic change twice and is going to be commercial. Or I could just give this one a makeover and take down the old images and just have a IGMC download. Not sure yet. I do want to post consistent updates and me communicative about this rather than dead silent as that helps no one.

Thanks for reading, I hope to have a big update soon! I do want to have a demo out eventually as well.

Progress Report

A New Year

In the month of December alone, I have made the most progress on Cope Island in a long time. I really cracked down and forced myself to work hard on it. I managed to find time at my job to open up my laptop and slave away at it.

Today I wrote the last of the planned endings. The maps are made and the enemies are made. 99% of the graphics are made, barring one known fix I have to make and possibly some icons for status ailments. And all the secrets I planned are in as well. This past week or so I made the icons and animations for all 32 weapons.

How far am I before being done? I honestly have no idea. There are scripts that need to be implemented in it. I need to test, test, and test it. I need to go back and tighten the gameplay as much as I can. I need to polish graphics and find all the small errors that would drive me mad if I left in. I feel so close yet so far.

Basically what I am saying is, I'm fairly close to being finished on my side of things. I have no idea when it will be ready for release and I have no idea how much I'll have to change or not yet.

My head is muddled and strained from all the effort I have been putting in this game the past month, or the past year lol. I put so much thought into every aspect of this game. Ideas I've been keeping with me since those first days of development during the contest have finally been implemented and made a reality.

So before I go into the final stage of development, I'm gonna take a week or two off to just relax. I wanted to do that for Christmas and New Years, but instead I spent the days working on the game, haha, because I had a goal to complete before this break.

I'm pretty mentally exhausted right now, but I will say this is the most fun I ever had working on a project and I feel it is the best thing I have done yet.

I feel obligated to show off a couple new pictures:

The much feared Vitale. (Or you can just call it the typical RPG slime) This creature will be the first of many harsh trials thrown against the player. (There is pretty much no way you can be killed by this one, but it takes two standard attacks! Scary.)

Anthony's Sword. Slow yet powerful. Used to be called Broad Sword. (I wonder if anyone can get the very loose reference.)

That's all for now. Thanks for reading!


A Very Merry Cope Island Christmas

Cope Island is a place where all are welcome to visit and better themselves.

We're looking at you, Santa.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone!

P.S. Imagine it's a brisk Christmas morning and you have been waiting all night to open that very promising present waiting for you under the tree. Finally it is time and you tear apart that beautiful wrapping paper like a hungry animal feasting upon its prey. Within you see the biggest surprise of all: it's you. A better version of yourself.

Progress Report

The Island Evolves

I'm pretty new to blogging, but I'm going to try to make this as coherent as possible haha.

Cope Island was originally a three week project that I made for IGMC 2014. I tried my best to make the best game I could make in such a little time. For months it received almost no reception or any sort of buzz, though a few people played it and responded positively. That was good. It was the first time I had the courage to show a project to the public. Anyone playing at all was a great feeling.

Then I see the contest results and there my game is, third place on the RPG side of the contest.

I really had no idea it would do that well. While I believed in the project immensely, I saw a bunch of nice looking custom made graphics in the contest. It was a very early decision to only use RTP for the graphics, as I felt it would give me a chance to focus more on gameplay. To me, three weeks felt like it was not enough for me alone to do all the graphics, music, and gameplay.

The first version of the game I came up with, I spent a lot more time on making the maps look nice. When I decided to redo all the maps, I made the decision to focus purely on gameplay and not too focused on making nice lush environments. I tried to make simple and nice, though thinking back to it, simple and nice is kind of hard to pull off if it is nature based haha.

After I got my prize for the contest, they asked me if I wanted to work further on Cope Island and make it commercial. I said yes and here we are.

The first bit of business was to focus a lot more on the mapping and overall graphics. I felt a lot of the charm of Cope Island was from me expressing myself without holding back, so I truly believe the best experience of the game for now will be if I do all the graphics myself.

I've worked a lot with pixel art, though I don't have much natural artistic talent. Every bit of progress I made was from the determination to get better at it. By the time I started on Cope Island, my pixel art skills have gotten decent, though nowhere near where I wanted to be, especially for commercial.

So I set a strict standard for myself and have been working hard on polishing and refining it as much as I can. It is still WIP and needs plenty of polish, but I think it's about time to show my new stuff.

Here is a picture from the original Cope Island for the sake of comparison.

Looks like the standard RTP RPG Maker game. Now here is the updated version of it.

Now I shut up and show a bunch of other images.

For now I am only showing environments off, seeing how I still have plenty to polish on the menus and I'd rather show those off when they are ready. I'm pretty far into the development, but with that said still a big hurdle to pass before I finish and release.

Regarding actual content before polishing, I'm about 90% done. I re-designed all the maps and added a bunch more areas and secrets. I re-did the whole battle system to make it much more balanced and fast-paced.

I made 30 different enemy sprites at this point. Not sure if there will be more than that yet. For now I think I am done there. I would love to show some off, but I want to wait a little more.

The original version had 7 songs I made for the game within three weeks. The new version has 24 songs made now, which 3 of the songs I made for the original I scrapped and re-did. I may add a couple of more.

There are a whole bunch of features planned, but I will not discuss those until they are made, seeing how I'd rather not make false promises haha. So I hope for now this will suffice.

For all those who enjoyed the original Cope Island, I'm trying my best to deliver the best version of the game I can possibly make. Thanks for all the support so far! I'll try to keep everyone updated much more often for now on, especially now that things are being made at a very fast pace right.

There is no release date and I have no estimation to when it will be released. Though I'm 99% certain it will be finished and released next year. Hopefully early next year.

(Whew, this was hard to write, I've kept this stuff to myself for so long now it's hard to let go, haha.)
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