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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Oh, as a side note and a bit of an ego boost, I got a positive review on Steam for Vile Philosophy!

"A wonderfully complex story that really does take me back to the choose-your-own-adventure books. Even after completing it, I'm sure there are more story lines to explore and other options I could have selected. I might even have been able to get a better ending. This idea of nontraditional storytelling is spectacular and I would love to see more of it. The only criticism I can think of is that it would be more engaging if the player were actually able to roll the dice during combat, rather than the game doing it automatically. Still, I thoroughly enjoyed playing this and will likely go through it again." - Hypatia

I am not so blind that I can't see the glaring, trumpeting elephant in the room that is the combat system needing work, but this was pretty nice to wake up to over the weekend. Slightly...too nice. I spent the next night waking up randomly because my brain kept telling me that a) this was a sign that people were going to start buying the games by the hundred and b) they were posting bugs that needed to be fixed asap! Although it is sad the first part isn't true (yet), the fact that things seem pretty bug free overall is a blessing.
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Well it's been a while, but the silence has been because I have been sorting things out as fast as I can!

First off, the new music for Blissful Ignorance is done. Cryo Chamber took it in a new direction from my initial request, but the current theme is sinister, unsettling drumming with an ambient layer of droning chants that make for an unsettling combination.

Secondly, the colour art pages are coming in! Here's a humble shopkeeper for people to peer at.



With music done, and art coming in, technically I am good to go for the tablet build by the end of the month. However, the key thing is the voice acting. All of the lines have been recorded, and this week I stormed through 100+ of them, taking the number cut out and ready for review to 425 out of 600+! I estimate that I should be done with this, and therefore any minor adjustments to the text, by the start of September. Reviewing and plugging them in will take another week after that. If I do things like get a trailer sorted in the background (which is possible once I have music and art) then we are absolutely go for a launch on that spookiest of dates - Halloweeeeeeeen!

I'll let people know when I next hit an important milestone. Today I need to deal with some financial stuff and then grind through some more voice clips reviews. Hope everyone has a great weekend!
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Thanks for the update, Grindwheel Games ! (y)
No worries! As I have said before, daily or even weekly updates would be things like 'I edited 100 voice clips this week, none of which I can share with you to prevent spoilers'. So when I hit a real milestone I can and will discuss it with you all. :)
Oh! And I forgot to mention a couple of things.

The UI update is sort of going ahead. However, Carlos recently lost his job, so this will happen whenever he has the spare time. Should things look like they are going to drag out for a while, I might have to ask Muthur Brine to help out with that too. Hopefully it will not come to that, but if you could all lend Carlos your energy then I am sure things will work out.

Speaking of positive feelings, Vile Philosophy got another good review...sort of! It was given a thumbs up on Steam by someone who said they found the VO for a female character 'enticing'. Given that all of the voices are done by my father, I passed this feedback on to him, to his amusement.

And finally, I had an idea for a small side project to the series which I have done the basic work on and will set aside until after book 3 is out. Back in the wayback machine, I made a simple maze builder program in Unity to learn a bit of coding while also getting to grips with the 3D stuff like basic movement and rigidbodies. I actually used this to create the hedge maze in Vile Philosophy. Well, I was looking through things the other day, and decided to make that into a small puzzle game.

Currently titled 'Vile Runner', it will be set in the time period between the Vile Philosophers taking over the area with the hedge maze and the player arriving. To amuse themselves, the Philosophers give someone a dose of poison and send them into the ever-changing maze to see if they can make it out before they die. That person will be you. :p It'll be simple, with maybe a few unlocks like character avatars, and just a first-person view. Hopefully people will like it!
 
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OP
Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

Junior Member
Jun 6, 2019
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not far enough just yet :(

i've been kinda busy for the past 2 weeks ... but i'll be going back to it soon! :)
No worries, I hope you manage to get the rest! I should have just poked the steam back end, as I can see that nobody has managed the full gallery yet. :p
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Well that was exhausting!

I had to move last week, while also trying to get all the voice clips for Blissful Ignorance cut out and ready for polish and plugin. That meant yesterday was an 8am-7pm marathon of voice editing to ensure I am down to finish the game by Halloween. Which is absolutely still the case, as a result of that mini-crunch.

Art is rolling in steadily, as are positive reviews for Pale Harbour and Blissful Ignorance. One curator even posted a 50-minute playthrough of Pale Harbour on Youtube. They died, naturally. ;) But that was still pretty nice to watch.

So, with that milestone dealt with, I now need to knuckle down to plugging in the clips. That should take a week or so. The art is also almost done, and I should have the front cover to share in the next week, if things go to plan. Once the art is all here I can get on Steam, and then focus on taking care of some admin at my end while waiting for release.

Anyway, hope everyone is having a good weekend!
 

lashman

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So, with that milestone dealt with, I now need to knuckle down to plugging in the clips. That should take a week or so. The art is also almost done, and I should have the front cover to share in the next week, if things go to plan. Once the art is all here I can get on Steam, and then focus on taking care of some admin at my end while waiting for release.
good luck! :)

Anyway, hope everyone is having a good weekend!
likewise! :D
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Well, my machine tries to eat itself alive and I came down with a cold, but I still managed to get all of the voice clips for book 3 reviewed and plugged in last week. I am sorry for not boosting this post sooner, but I have been recovering from the flu, as well as spending all day doing my taxes. So that was fun!

But yes; Blissful Ignorance is now all sorted barring the last 5 art pages (including the cover), which should be done sometime this week. Once I have the cover I can set up everything I need for the steam page, and when I have all the art I can get a build up and running on PC and mobile. Then I can move on with Red Ripper. That's all done with regards to the critical path, and I'll be able to storm through the side paths with ease in the next few weeks.

The game has been getting a lot of positive traction with Steam Curators, which is great! I am hoping that the addition of the Heirloom and Traits systems in the next couple of books will help to make combat less of a drag, which is a common complaint. Still no news on the UI update, although if the books start selling well I might be able to persuade Muthur Brine to help out with that on top of her regular page art.

Speaking of which...



Her'es a fellow yelling about how he totally isn't a spoiler!

As you can see, Muthur Brine has out-done herself again. There are a number of crowd scenes, several of which remind me of the Garden of Earthly Delights. Her work on all the little details and extras really makes the scenes come to life, in my opinion.

Anyway - once I have book 4 in a good state I am going to knuckle down on that maze-runner program. When I last left it, it was generating a nice X by X maze with a star and end point that the player can go scooting through. I want to adjust the end points to make them a little less predictable, then start looking into getting some assets from the store to make it look pretty. Depending on how things go, I might fold the UI rework into this project and commission some assets that will work for both games.

Hope everyone had a great weekend! When I have the front cover I'll be updating the theme of this thread, and post a copy here for people to enjoy. That should hopefully be the next post from my end.
 

lashman

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I came down with a cold
oh no ... get well soon!

But yes; Blissful Ignorance is now all sorted barring the last 5 art pages (including the cover), which should be done sometime this week.
fingers crossed :)

The game has been getting a lot of positive traction with Steam Curators, which is great!
that's great to hear, congrats

When I have the front cover I'll be updating the theme of this thread, and post a copy here for people to enjoy. That should hopefully be the next post from my end.
can't wait! :)
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Good morning!

So, there was a bit of a problem with the page art, most notably the artist stopped working on the last few images to do some other work...without telling me. Once we got that squared away, the last few pages came in pretty quickly. I spent the weekend getting everything ready for the Steam page, so now I am just waiting on the trailer and then we're good to go! Today I will be making sure the tablet build is all good too, but for all the faff they do, Google is generally a lot quicker to set up, so that shouldn't take all day.

In the meantime, please enjoy the full cover below!



This was actually going to be one of the page images, but I liked the pose of the creature so much that we re-did the page it was going to be and made this the front cover. Given how things sort of trickled off at the end that seems to have been for the best.

As promised, with this game approaching release, I have added the next in line to the website. Book 5 will be...Tattered Sails! YOU will take on the onerous duty of protecting a group of treasure-seeing archaeologists as they unearth the remains of a village lost to an unknown disaster. But beneath the muck and ruins lies an obscene power that thirsts to be set free once more...

In addition, I have named the maze runner game as The Harrow Run. While getting Red Ripper up and running I have been poking this in my spare time. Right now everything seems about ready to go for polish and getting some decent 3d assets for the hedge maze. I am going to clear Red Ripper out of the way first, then settle down and see what can be done about that. For reference, Red Ripper is up to 500+ pages, and has plenty of side paths, dead ends and fights to go. I expect it to end up pushing to 600 mark, so that will be more fun when it comes to editing and plugging in the voiceover!

That's everything for now. I hope people have a great week, and I'll let you all know when the trailer is up.
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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Blissful Ignorance's store page is now live!


I know this is sort of skipping a step, but with the trailer still not done, and the whole 'you must be live for 2 weeks before you can launch' thing, I thought it made more sense to go live with the page now and add the trailer when it is done. The page does contain a number of images in screenshots, so if you want to get a preview of some more of the amazing art that Muthur Brine did for this book you can take a look as well.

Don't forget to wishlist! I'll let you all know when the trailer is ready for you as well.
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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The Blissful Ignorance trailer is here! And it is breaking the internet!

Or, more realistically, the new program we used has saved it at a whopping 300MB in size, which I noticed when I tried to upload it to my website. Obviously, that didn't work, so I have had to leave the video there blank. Thankfully Facebook and Steam both accepted it in the meantime. The trailer is currently in for review by Valve as part of the final approval process, and I have included a link to the Facebook version below for people to enjoy.


As a quick note, this time around I did not include the ambient layer in the trailer. This consists of some dark chanting, and I thought that would impact the VO unless we faded it up and down as happens in game, so this time you just get the pure theme music. This is, again, an original work by Cryo Chamber, and I feel it fits well with the bleak and forbidding atmosphere of the game.

With this, I now have everything sorted for the book, barring the eventual release. I'll start posting the page art in the run up to Halloween as expected, and let you all know when we have some more news. In the meantime, I am just hammering away at book 4. I hope to have it written by the end of the week, and hopefully all primed to go into full production with editing and such by the end of the year.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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And fixed!

So the new program we were using for the trailer demanded an update. When the update was applied it deleted the program and would not let it re-install. After some faffing and tech support, it came back and the trailer is now small enough to fit on the website. Good news!

I've almost finished writing book 4 as well. We're currently looking at it sitting around 630 pages, before I add in the Easter egg endings and any side paths that have been missed so far. I assume you all know about the alternative endings, right? ;) In any case, when that is all done we'll be near 640-650 ish. Like book 2 there is a 'maze' section, which does bulk it out, although it is a lot more like a large dungeon than a hedge maze and so has way more detail.

Anyway, once the core book is written I am going to try and get the games on some other platforms, such as the Apple store and GoG. That'll be a side project to plugging in all systems and making sure book 4 is good to go in 2020. I'll keep people updated on that progress for sure!
 

lashman

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So the new program we were using for the trailer demanded an update. When the update was applied it deleted the program and would not let it re-install. After some faffing and tech support, it came back and the trailer is now small enough to fit on the website. Good news!
whew, crisis averted! :)

Anyway, once the core book is written I am going to try and get the games on some other platforms, such as the Apple store and GoG. That'll be a side project to plugging in all systems and making sure book 4 is good to go in 2020. I'll keep people updated on that progress for sure!
sounds good to me! :thumbsupblob:
 
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Grindwheel Games

Grindwheel Games

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Jun 6, 2019
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And the game has been approved! There are now no roadblocks between me and the Halloween launch. I have also finished off the core book for Red Ripper, and I am in the process of plugging all the entries in before the long sessions of checking all the links are working as expected. That will be livened up by attempting to get onto the other platforms, although I doubt that'll be in time for Halloween at this stage.

A busy week with plenty of updates! Hopefully this will make up for the dry spell once book 3 is done and book 4 is going through things like voice over. :)
 

lashman

Dead & Forgotten
Sep 5, 2018
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