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I mean, it is an easy fix, but something I'd rather not have to do. And I suppose this does prove that real humans are actually looking at the game rather than rubber-stamping robots allowing any old crap through!
 
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Well yes...but when games with no .exe were going onto the store, or that whole 'light' game which only had one level was released, people did wonder...
 
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Good afternoon all. Well, it took a while but I finally got things cleared up with Steam...sort of. :p

To cut a long story short, I have gone and removed links from the earlier games, just to be on the safe side. I also removed all mentions of going to Bandcamp or other websites too. This is because the rules, even when explained to me, were still a little vague. Specifically the issue seems to be linking to a site where people can digitally pay for goods, or telling people to go to such a site. However, you can't digitally pay for goods on my dad's website, but it still breaks the rules...somehow.

So in order to get past this without having to do a song and dance, or worry about what happens if my dad did ever add a Paypal link to his site, I have got rid of all the links, barring the ones I need to have related to the free sound effects used in Pale Harbour. Since these link to FREE audio assets, I hope this will be fine. They seem to have been so far, but you never know!

In any case, the games have all been updated. I sent Red Ripper in first for approval and to know that the new link-less credits would work...and it did! The game has now been fully approved and will be available on Halloween as planned! This will let me focus on Tattered Sails, which is moving into the final endgame as we speak. So that's all good. I'll let people know when I move on to the editing and QA section. The full trailer should also be up on the store page soon. It has been uploaded and checked, so I assume it is waiting on approval from someone too!
 

lashman

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Good afternoon all. Well, it took a while but I finally got things cleared up with Steam...sort of. :p

To cut a long story short, I have gone and removed links from the earlier games, just to be on the safe side. I also removed all mentions of going to Bandcamp or other websites too. This is because the rules, even when explained to me, were still a little vague. Specifically the issue seems to be linking to a site where people can digitally pay for goods, or telling people to go to such a site. However, you can't digitally pay for goods on my dad's website, but it still breaks the rules...somehow.

So in order to get past this without having to do a song and dance, or worry about what happens if my dad did ever add a Paypal link to his site, I have got rid of all the links, barring the ones I need to have related to the free sound effects used in Pale Harbour. Since these link to FREE audio assets, I hope this will be fine. They seem to have been so far, but you never know!

In any case, the games have all been updated. I sent Red Ripper in first for approval and to know that the new link-less credits would work...and it did! The game has now been fully approved and will be available on Halloween as planned! This will let me focus on Tattered Sails, which is moving into the final endgame as we speak. So that's all good. I'll let people know when I move on to the editing and QA section. The full trailer should also be up on the store page soon. It has been uploaded and checked, so I assume it is waiting on approval from someone too!
well that sucks :(

but at least it's all sorted now, i guess ... so that's good :)
 
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but at least it's all sorted now, i guess ... so that's good :)
Indeed! And with way less hassle than Google Play. They just took down my stuff without really giving me a head's up and their reply with regards to what changes were needed were 'you need to change this to be acceptable'. So, confusing as things were, at least I got a speedy and mostly helpful answer, and my games were not taken down while I fixed it.
 
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Indeed! And with way less hassle than Google Play. They just took down my stuff without really giving me a head's up and their reply with regards to what changes were needed were 'you need to change this to be acceptable'. So, confusing as things were, at least I got a speedy and mostly helpful answer, and my games were not taken down while I fixed it.
yeah, that's definitely better than mobile stores ... that's for sure
 
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And Tattered Sails is done!

The text is done, and most of it plugged in. The final stages of writing it were very strange though. I looked at the 500 pages I was at and went "there is no way I am going to still be writing at 600 pages. This book is going to be too short!" Then I looked down and I was at 580, and still have the whole final act's side quests and alternative ending to write. And I went "Jesus B Campbell! This thing is going to be over 700 pages long at this rate!" In the end things evened out at 660, which is the exact same size as Red Ripper ended up being. That is not counting unlockable endings, and anything I might have missed. So we may end up at 670.

It just goes to show how odd the process can get sometimes. I swung from worrying I needed to expand sections to what I might have to cut out, but then landed around about the same size as most of the previous books. This one does, like Blissful Ignorance have a lot of small moral choices and subtle changes which come about too, which explains the extras. I'll have to see how things end up after the next stage, which is plugging everything in and then doing the editing and testing pass.

On the Red Ripper front, I made sure the tablet build was online and ready for release, although I will have to modify the API level as the minimum level will change in August. Overall, both books are looking good, and I should have Red Ripper out on schedule and Tattered Sails at the same place it was by the end of the year. That'll give me a little time to work on the Harrow Run, as well as making a start on Wight Chapel Dreams.
 
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:wd_praise:

can't wait! :D
Well you still have Red Ripper to look forward to! As part of my testing this weekend I decided that it was a little too tough at the higher levels and added some more healing items at medium and hard levels. I think even with the new equipment veteran hunters will still get that 'I just walked through hell' feeling by the end. ;)

Speaking of which, do you have a plan for which of the items you will likely take with your hunter on this trip? I was pretty surprised to see what the testers took when they were giving it a shot.
 
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Well you still have Red Ripper to look forward to!
i'm looking forward to all of them! :p

Speaking of which, do you have a plan for which of the items you will likely take with your hunter on this trip? I was pretty surprised to see what the testers took when they were giving it a shot.
nope ... haven't thought about it just yet
 
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And Tattered Sails is in testing!

I hit that milestone on Monday, so this is the first real chance to talk about it. Without any new additions we're looking at around a 670 page count, which is 10 more than Red Ripper. This time there is a lot of additional changes based on the choices you make through the game, leading to a lot of subtle diversion in the path you reach at the end. I expect to be done with the testing and editing pass by the end of the month, maybe sometime in early September. Then it'll go to one side to brew until January, while I focus on The Harrow Run and seeing how that progresses.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!
 
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Hey all, just a quick update. This week got a bit disrupted, so I am slightly behind where I wanted to be. But, I am still up to 460 pages edited and tested, and probably have a week or so to go. It might spill into Monday or Tuesday, so that's not too bad overall!

In the meantime, I am going to make a post on the Red Ripper page about the Heirloom system, and see if I can make a poll on the community forum to find out what sort of items people are likely to take with them when they visit Roche Divine. I'll let everyone know when Tattered Sails is completed, which should hopefully be this time next week. Have a good weekend all!
 
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Well wait no more, because the next update is here. :D

I completed the editing and testing pass for Tattered Sails on Friday. So, as of now, it is good to go to the editors and then get VO. Right now that is, as with Red Ripper, looking at being done in January. That will give me some time to make sure red Ripper is 100% good to go (the Steam version is fine, I just need to update all my API levels for Google), and then focus on starting book 6. I'm also going to push forward with The Harrow Run, and god help me maybe even get some down time too.

I'm also going to start pushing Red Ripper through the various outlets which have already covered it, and looking into other platforms like Good Old Games and - finally - getting an Apple build. So work will continue on a lot of Grindwheel Games stuff, as always!

Hope everyone is having a good weekend, and if things go well the next update will be regarding the cover of Red Ripper going on Shark Robot, amongst other things.
 
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Well, I have made some good progress on the Harrow Run mechanics, and will be starting on some UI work and things like tutorials, unlocking new mazes by beating old ones, etc. While I work on that I have been thinking of improvements to the Hunter's Journals engine and thought I would run it past people.

My current plan is to remove all enemy data from the text, unless it is a new, unique mechanic. Instead, following the name and stats, there would be a summary of effects. So something like:

Giant Lampreys
Skill 6
Stamina 5
Type - Beast
Special:
Vampiric - Recovers 1 Stamina on attack.
Skill Down - -1 Skill for this fight.
Damage Reduction - Reduces damage by 1.

This would be instead of having a paragraph saying:

The Lampreys will drain 1 Stamina every time they land a hit. In addition being knee-deep in water will reduce your Skill by 1 for the duration of this combat. Moreover, the murky water prevents you from aiming your blows for maximum effect. They will reduce all damage you deal to them by 1 as a result.

What do people think?
 
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Kind of a late one tonight, but I thought I'd share some of the stuff I have been working on. Vile Maze Run is getting close to needing graphics to start polishing it. I need to make it dynamically create the level selection buttons, including indicators as to how well you've done in previous runs at that level, as well as things like controller support. But right now it is looking pretty good. Here's a layout of one of the mazes:



This is level 10. The mazes are X by X where X = Level+4. So the first level is a 5 X 5 grid. The start point is always approximately halfway up the left hand side, and the exit somewhere on the right. It can be up to halfway along one of the top or bottom edges, so at larger sizes it will be tricky to find without multiple runs through.

Take a look at the level 50 maze for example. Good luck with that one. :D



That was a little laggy, even with the basic polys. I will have to see how large a maze is sensible to build before we run into issues with speed. I have tried 100, which loaded...eventually. I am guessing that 50's probably going to be a starting end point, if that makes sense, and extra mazes will be added if I can make things more efficient when it comes to loading.

For reference, I am using a Randomized Prim's algorithm to generate the cells. The end point is then chose to go anywhere along the right edge, or up to halfway along the top or bottom. Each cell with 4 exits automatically gets a 'plinth', which I plan to be things like a statue, dry fountain, stack of candles, skulls, etc to make things a little nicer. Each non-junction cells also has a 1 in 5 chance of having a plinth. Dead ends have a 50-50 shot at having one too. So that means if you turn a corner and see a plinth, but no exit behind it, there is a slight chance it is a corner rather than a dead end...mostly to troll people. ;)

Anyway, that's what I've been up to, as well as sketching out the first few chunks of the critical path on book 6. Next week I have the fun task of going through all of the tablet builds to make sure they meet Googles minimum API level. So that'll be interesting! Have a good weekend all!
 
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Well, this has been pretty busy. x_x

Sorry for the lack of updates, but I have basically been rushing about doing so much stuff that I lost track of the time! Here's a quick rundown.

Red Ripper keys have been sent to reviewers, and so far has a positive reception. The difficulty turned out to be too high for a couple of achievements, and people were getting the 'mediocre' ending and complaining how hard it was go get what they thought was the 'good' final end! The fan who found bugs in Blissful Ignorance also managed to ferret out some bugs caused by fights not registering as completed, and also spent ages making a 4-page guide to one section of the game. As such I have offered her not only a copy of Tattered Sails when it comes out, but a place in the credits for all her hard work!

A new build went live today to take care of the fixes and rebalancing tweaks. So the game should hopefully be a touch more stable come launch day.

Tattered Sails has completed QA. I had upgraded the program used to output everything for checking, which means I have thankfully caught any repeat issues of fights not being set. Compared to Red Ripper this one is far more of a slow build up, and has a LOT more choices which matter in the long term. It also features mechanics to permanently drop your maximum skill and stamina...so that's great too. :D

Wight Chapel Dreams is in production, and I have been forging through the critical path. Maybe it is the spooky time of they ear, but I am having a lot of fun exploring the grim - even by my standards - district of Wight Chapel and finally bringing it to hideous life.

Speaking of hideous, the Harrow Run has probably come as far as it can without spending some time and money on 3D art to check the maximum maze size I can add without the whole thing getting too bonkers. As a result that will have to go on pause until I have a little extra money for that.

So yes, the reason things have not been moving forward on here is because so much stuff has been going on outside of this thread. On top of all of this I have been dealing with RL issues like filing taxes, and working out that my gas supplier was technically not supplying me with gas. Fun times! But, for all that, development continues as always. Hope everyone is keeping safe, and is looking forward to the art page reveals beginning next week!
 

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Well, this has been pretty busy. x_x

Sorry for the lack of updates, but I have basically been rushing about doing so much stuff that I lost track of the time!
no need to apologize ... take all the time you need! :)

lots of great news too! congrats on the positive reception :D

and yeah - keep 'em coming! :blobhug:
 
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Good morning! It is just two weeks until the release of Red Ripper, so you know what that means...art and lore! Please enjoy the first page below.



Items crafted before the imposition of The Stasis are considered by the Sunlight Alliance to be almost divine in nature. Here we see a single bead from a ceremonial rosary, which has been strung on a cord made of ancient threads. The peasants of the Alliance believe such trinkets bring great fortune and divine favour.

 
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It's Wednesday, so that means its time for another page!



It is, perhaps, a testament to the skill and artistry of the pre-Stasis Alliance that so many mundane objects have survived the ravages of time. This doll, for example, was fabricated at the renowned Herballien boutique some time before the Sunset Rebellion. The workers at the present factory are barely able to produce simple rag figures due to both a shortage of materials and poor training. But, as dictated by The Stasis, they must continue to churn out such shoddy work as if their very souls depend on it.

 

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It is, perhaps, a testament to the skill and artistry of the pre-Stasis Alliance that so many mundane objects have survived the ravages of time. This doll, for example, was fabricated at the renowned Herballien boutique some time before the Sunset Rebellion. The workers at the present factory are barely able to produce simple rag figures due to both a shortage of materials and poor training. But, as dictated by The Stasis, they must continue to churn out such shoddy work as if their very souls depend on it.
that's not a creepy doll ... not at all

 
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Oh hey, it's Friday. That means two things. First, we have just 8 days until the release of Red Ripper. Second, we have a new art page for people to enjoy. :)



Compasses are a rare sight in the Sunlight Alliance, as there is little need for them. Under The Stasis, people are either expected to stay put, or the symbolic journey they must take is already so well known to them such tools are not needed. Surviving examples are traded on the black market by members of the Heretics, and possession of one is considered suspicious by the Inquisitors.

Have a good weekend!
 
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Whoops, got a little caught up in a few things. Mostly someone posting that the Witch Silver Weapons were not working - which I was not able to replicate. But here is today's news. Firstly the page for Monday:



Roche Divine embodies the terrible dichotomy of the the Sunlight Alliance. In the halls of the Sainted Nobility, everything is of the highest quality, gilded excessively and polished to a high sheen. This luxury is only maintained by the majority of the populace living in conditions of utter, abject poverty. The worst part is that, thanks to centuries of The Stasis, the people not only believe this to be their natural state, but actively oppose any attempt to improve their lot.

And secondly...



The Shark Robot store has been expanded! The cover for Red Ripper - The Forgotten Victim - is now available on the store too. Link below.

 
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Here is the penultimate Red Ripper page, and the last of the general art images. After this there is is only...death. ;)



Darkness quickly becomes a constant in a hunter's life. Few of their foes lurk in the bright light of day, or move among the regular folk on the surface. It was for this reason that, when the Hunter's Clubs were initially formalised, several voices called for their members to be named 'Torchbearers' or 'Light-Bringers'. In the end these titles were dropped, although it is still the duty of the hunters to bring the light of reason to the darkest of places.

 
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The Steam Halloween sale began yesterday, so all Grindwheel Games Titles are 50% off right now. Its the perfect time to grab them to train for tomorrows release of Red Ripper. ;)

Speaking of which, here is the final 'general' art page, and as is traditional for the pre-release phase it is the death image. You will likely be seeing this a lot - more than usual - given the challenges posed by the book!



While not an official part of The Stasis, if a person of note dies they are often commemorated with a small shrine or ossuary where they fell. This means they remain dead in the same place, this preserving continuity in future years. As a visitor to the Sunlight Alliance, you will be afforded this dubious honour...even though you are a godless heathen in the eyes of the sainted nobility.


 
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Happy Halloween! I got you...the most lethal challenge in the Hunter's Journals series to date. :D It is both a trick and a treat.


Meet helpful locals like the ones below as you scrabble in the dirt of the Low City, trying to bring a killer to justice. I'm sure they will offer aid to a poor hunter like yourself.



All joking aside, this has shown that a Halloween launch is very viable, and way less frantic now I can focus on one book per year. Tattered Sails should hit stores at the same time next year, and I promise it won't be as tough! Not just because of the Traits, but also because I think this level of difficulty is a touch too high. Still, what is life without a bit of a challenge? And if every book is a walking simulator in text format it will get boring quickly. So sharpen your swords, load your pistols, and take on the Red Ripper...if you dare! :O Dracula noises
 
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Hey all, just a bit of news.

First off, Wight Chapel Dreams is critical path complete, and I have added a few engine tweaks to the game to allow for the following:

  • Stamina loss or gains can now be followed by multiple lines of text. previously they only had one which tortured grammar quite a bit and meant I had to cut some detail short or push it to the next page.
  • Enemy stats are now displayed as a block of text along with the name, meaning that I can technically pack in more page text, or at the very least remove something saying 'you will reduce your skill by 2'. This also takes into account the feedback from way, way back at the start to put things like needing an item in bold to grab the players eye a bit better.

I am going to be going through plugging in the text and adding side paths. This one may end up weighing in slightly shorter than the other books, but there is a good reason for that. It takes place entirely in flashbacks, and so you can't actually die! If you did then you wouldn't be there in the future, going over the case with the mentor who helped you with it at the time. As a result there will be 1-3 'death' nodes which all combat encounters will lead to in order to explain this paradox. Failure is more likely, with the player leaving the adventure early leading to them getting less 'Credit', and therefore getting worse endings based on their overall performance.

This means that the core critical path is ~187 pages long, which is actually longer than the other games, but even with side paths and different endings we may only hit the ~600 page mark for this one. Still, as I found out at the end of Tattered Sails, those pages rack up quickly!

One final point is that I was approached this week by the people behind the Game Development World Championships. They wanted to know if I was interested in entering Red Ripper to the 2020 list, and I have done so gladly! Game Development World Championship 2020 | GDWC 2020 The full list is currently still only visible to admins, but this seems like a great way to get the game out there.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!
 
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One final point is that I was approached this week by the people behind the Game Development World Championships. They wanted to know if I was interested in entering Red Ripper to the 2020 list, and I have done so gladly! Game Development World Championship 2020 | GDWC 2020 The full list is currently still only visible to admins, but this seems like a great way to get the game out there.
wow ... nice! congrats! :D
 
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