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« Reply #140 on: January 05, 2016, 11:27:20 AM »

Re videos: Has anyone had any experience using the Elgato Game Capture HD? My PC is too weak to capture video at 60fps!
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kevin andersson
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« Reply #141 on: January 07, 2016, 10:52:22 PM »

First of all, I've enjoyed the gif's I've seen on twitter of this game! It looks cool and you've got my support, I love the hair in the wind as well!

About your Kickstarter, as someone pointed out that you should focus a lot on the kickstarter page and the video. I must say that I agree with him. Even though showing of gameplay is important, you shouldn't forget about showing who you are. When I watch kickstarter campaign, I sometimes skip to the part where the developer/s are talking about the project or who they are. I find that part incredibly important and interesting. So my tips to you would be to not forget to show YOU in the kickstarter video. It calms some people down that they know who's making the game.
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« Reply #142 on: January 08, 2016, 02:09:35 AM »

Thanks Kevin, glad you enjoyed the GIFs Smiley

I appreciate the Kickstarter feedback, I'll have to see if I can get hold of a camera so the world can see my interesting face (not sure iPhone quality will really do it justice).

I think the plan is to try and have a short trailer, roughly a minute in length, showing gameplay and hinting at the story. For the Kickstarter video I'll probably use that, with me at the end explaining myself.

I'll possibly add some additional gameplay bits while I try to point out a few interesting things about the game.

Think that sounds ok?

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kevin andersson
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« Reply #143 on: January 08, 2016, 02:31:15 AM »

Yes that sounds nice actually! Good luck with the campaign!
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« Reply #144 on: January 08, 2016, 02:38:25 AM »

[...]Even though showing of gameplay is important, you shouldn't forget about showing who you are. When I watch kickstarter campaign, I sometimes skip to the part where the developer/s are talking about the project or who they are. I find that part incredibly important and interesting. So my tips to you would be to not forget to show YOU in the kickstarter video. It calms some people down that they know who's making the game.

I always skip the parts the developers are talking. I want to see gameplay, immediately. Showing uninteresting logos, cinematics, talking developer's faces for too long often results in closing the video. So you should put information about yourself at the end, imho. Smiley

I'm only interested in the games the developer has released before, but i prefer reading and links in the KS description to get this information.

Good luck!
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kevin andersson
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« Reply #145 on: January 08, 2016, 03:57:29 AM »

I always skip the parts the developers are talking. I want to see gameplay, immediately. Showing uninteresting logos, cinematics, talking developer's faces for too long often results in closing the video. So you should put information about yourself at the end, imho. Smiley

I'm only interested in the games the developer has released before, but i prefer reading and links in the KS description to get this information.

I can understand that watching minutes of people talking might not be fun but if they show gameplay relevant to what they're talking about, then that's more fun. Although that might take more to do.

I agree with that it's important to hear what the developer has released before, track record is often very good to prove that you've had some experience before. Releasing a game is hard and you learn a lot the first times.
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« Reply #146 on: January 08, 2016, 06:47:42 PM »

I've often thought about trying it out myself at some point in the future. Then I think about all the rewards and stuff you have to come up with. Then I get a headache Tongue.

As for advice, for the trailer remember that AUDIO is just as important as the visuals. Music is super important and if possible, have something tailor-made for it. 

Good luck with the campaign! I'll back you! Beer!
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« Reply #147 on: January 09, 2016, 07:23:34 AM »

Thanks for all the input folks. I'll hopefully have a first draft of the trailer (just the gameplay part) in the next week or so, now that I've rearranged the schedule a little.

In the meantime, have a pleasant gif (you'll have already seem this on my twitter if you follow me no doubt)


Just trying to add a bit more character to the background with a prettier sky and some hills/mountains, so it looks like there's more to the world than just this bunch of trees!
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« Reply #148 on: January 09, 2016, 10:53:24 AM »

Good luck with the Kickstarter and the game.

I'd agree with a few of the above comments about the video. For me the thing I look for is gameplay and also the general 'vibe' of the game. As for showing yourself - that's cool but the biggest hurdle will be creating something compelling for the potential customers to see, understand and 'buy' into.

Also, as I'm sure you are aware, Kickstarter has a few game projects which have long missed their ship dates or otherwise gone dark. While I don't think slipping your date is a bad thing, you might want to be aware the people expect/need pretty regular updates on the project once they put in money. It's just common courtesy but it seems to be forgotten a lot on Kickstarters by the devs.

Finally, be honest with yourself about time and dates. I run a little mental exercise where I TRIPLE my dates and think 'Would I be OK with that?" haha. I'm not suggesting you will go three times over your prediction but, if we are being honest here, you are very likely giving the Kickstarter fans the most optimistic schedule you can muster. It may just be me but anytime a plan starts with 'If everything goes exactly right' or 'As long as nothing major happens' then I know it's probably being a tab optimistic and an unrealistic look at the development situation.

OK - lots of blabbing but the intention here is to offer hard won thoughts based on my experience. You are on your way and when it all comes down to it - you're the captain of your own ship. If you think you can do something - then DO IT! HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!

Best,

-Tim
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« Reply #149 on: January 10, 2016, 11:36:02 AM »

Thanks Tim, I'll definitely heed your words of advice. Boss 101 is looking great by the way, I'll be adding it to my wishlist in approximately 5 minutes!

But first:

DEVLOG 006

Ok, so I missed the devlog last week so here's a quick update:


New Area

I finished off the background art for the caves area:


I still need to add in some decoration, but that's not a priority right now.


Levelling Up

In the top right corner of the gif you can see a progress bar for the diamonds, which you can accumulate to spend on increasing your maximum health or magic (which will allow you to fly further).


Week 3

This last week the to do list included doing the art for a 3rd area, a vertical level where you are traversing up the side of a mountain. I made quite a bit of progress with this but sadly didn't manage to get enough tine to work on the game to get it completed, so I'll finish it off next week.

I also finished off the background for the wood and added some nice grass and flowers decoration that moves when you pass it.

What I haven't done, and what is now priority for next week, is the following:

- Press list preparation
- Kickstarter page (just setting up now as per Oldblood's advice, so I can tweak it over the coming weeks)
- Start putting some levels together

Add on to that the stuff that was actually planned for next week:

- Create press kit
- Prepare press email
- Start working on the trailer

I want to try and get a first draft of the trailer (although I'll not have all the art I need yet but more so I can start getting the feel and flow of it right) and also the first draft of a few levels so I can get some kind of demo sent off and see if I can get the game into the Leftfield Collection at Rezzed. It's probably not exactly the kind of thing they're looking for as they generally take really unique games in, but it's worth a shot!

As things are going, I've not been getting as much time to work on the game as I've really needed but I've still been able to make process so I'll possibly just have to cut a few of the things out that I had planned for the last couple of weeks, or even push the Kickstarter date back a couple of weeks.

Anyway, that's it for this week. Short but sweet?


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« Reply #150 on: January 11, 2016, 10:23:08 AM »

Really love getting updates about Mable. Looking forward to trying it out. It looks beautiful Smiley
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« Reply #151 on: January 11, 2016, 10:23:59 AM »

Been following this for a while, glad to see your still going strong with it. Looking good!
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« Reply #152 on: January 12, 2016, 10:06:41 AM »

Thank you! It's extremely motivational to see that people care about the game :D

Cheers!

 Toast Right
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« Reply #153 on: January 14, 2016, 02:21:26 PM »

Ok I've started putting together the Kickstarter page.

What do you think of this as a basic idea for the project image?


I think it needs Mable herself in the image, perhaps in fairy form flying across the scene. Perhaps in silhouette in a colour totally contrasting the blue of the image.

I don't think the fonts are really working for me. Quite like the layout though but I don't know if it'd really grab anyone's attention.

The first thing I tried was this:


Which is just made up of in game assets, but I think the new one has more legs. Not in a mutant way, just in that I think I can do more with it to make it more compelling/enticing.

Your thoughts and advice would be very much welcomed at this point  Tired

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« Reply #154 on: January 14, 2016, 03:54:02 PM »

Really digging the new one. A lot of potential there. This may just be me being ocd but I'd thicken up the lines on the B so that a passing eye doesn't read "Maple" or something and the L seems spaced a bit farther out than everything else is. Overall it definitely feels a lot more promotional than the original.
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« Reply #155 on: January 14, 2016, 07:00:53 PM »

I agree, the new one is nicer. font spacing does not seem adjustments as statet by oldblood. the old one is much too bright/too much white, plus the font is harder to read.
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« Reply #156 on: January 15, 2016, 01:46:27 AM »

I like the direction of the new font, but it's not readable.

Edit: Separating the glyphs would be one way towards more readability in small sizes:



I think i went too "gothic" here, haha. Grin
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« Reply #157 on: January 18, 2016, 12:58:41 PM »

zorg, oldblood and margfx - thank you for that. I was just using free fonts to get an idea of the style, but I'll be custom making it for the final image and those suggestions are super helpful! I can see what you mean about being readable. I'll be taking another bash at it in the next couple of weeks so I'll share the next draft then.

In the meantime:

DEVLOG 007

Or "Only 5 weeks left until I want to launch the Kickstarter"

Here are some of the highlights from last week:


New Stuff


We have some exciting stuff, such as this 'Mowl' which is half owl and half mole. She's designed to pop out of the ground but not really to be a big threat, more to help you recharge your magic and reach higher areas or cross gaps that are a bit too far for you to fly over. For example:


We've now also got moving platforms with lovely placeholder art, which I posted on my twitter (I'll not post a gif here as it just slows the whole page down) and some equally amazingly drawn giant spikes/barriers to squash you. These had a collision bug that took me around an hour to fix, as it was an issue with some old code I'd used from the original Ludum Dare version of the game. I keep finding this crappy code and getting pushed back. I really need to take time out to track the rest of the bad code down and get it sorted out, but the focus has to be on getting everything ready for Kickstarter now.

Here's a look at the giant spike:


Ouch.


Kickstarter Progress

The Video

Well, I've not started with this yet other than doing a rough storyboard to show the best bits and have a nice interest curve to it. I have now got an Elgato game capture HD (thank you Mr Credit Card) and it works a treat, so I can now capture 1080p footage of my screen. From next week I will be starting to capture footage so I'm hoping to have a first draft of the trailer by the 29th January.

The Project Page

Ok, other than the rough project image that I've post earlier, I've made a start on some of the copy for the page and roughed out the layout as a whole. I'm not very confident with my writing so what I'm posting here is the 2 paragraph intro to the game that took me roughly 6 drafts to get to this stage. Be that as it may, I would love your feedback on this if you wouldn't at all mind:

Quote

Mable & The Wood is a 2D action platformer set in a fairytale land, where the overuse of magic has started to drain the world of colour. You play the part of a shape-shifting girl who is half human and half faerie and is sworn to protect the wood and the creatures within it.

Armed with a sword that cannot be lifted, you must drop it to fly away in faerie form and re-summon it to destroy anything in its path. Flying uses magic, which drains colour from the world and can only be restored by killing the creatures of the wood that you are sworn to save.


Would you have already clicked away or does that have you at all interested? Wait, are you asleep!? WAKE UP! Sheesh.

Anyway, other than a couple of nights of working on level design and drinking moderately (surprisingly productive), that was my week.


The Week Ahead

Ok so my priorities this week are to get a demo ready to submit to the Leftfield Collection at Rezzed in London. Get a little more polish in there and code in a few of the bits that I want to show off in the demo (even though they're challenges from later levels).

In addition to this I need to get as much recorded as possible so I can make a start on the trailer. I feel like having a trailer and demo is vital if I'm contacting press, which I also want to be doing next week as it'll give them 5 weeks to think about covering the game or not!

The question is, is it better to send a better trailer/demo but send it late or send something not as polished but send it early? I guess we'll find out (and I will let you know what I find out).

Anyway, on that note I had best get back to things. I'll just leave you with my favourite bug of the week:


And the moral of this story is:

Quote
If you can't code shaders sober then getting drunk really won't help.

It's a lesson I will live by.
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« Reply #158 on: January 18, 2016, 01:33:58 PM »

Loving the Mowl, great name haha

Quote
The question is, is it better to send a better trailer/demo but send it late or send something not as polished but send it early? I guess we'll find out (and I will let you know what I find out).

In my opinion it would be better to wait until you have a better trailer, in the meantime I think a small gif could get them excited to see more. If you were to go this direction be sure to let them know that you have a trailer in the works. Going this way would mean you would have more time to work on the demo. Those are my thoughts anyway  Smiley
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« Reply #159 on: January 19, 2016, 01:10:04 AM »

Yeah I think I might just make a tiny teaser initially, just showing a few seconds of each environment and then a few seconds of action - although I'll have to think of some kind of teaser line to end the trailer with.

Either that or a gif, as you suggest, might work nicely as an introduction that I can follow up with the nice proper trailer.

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