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Bulwark in the City of Flesh

Developer Diary #004

July 23, 2018

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It never feels like the right time to post a new entry. I always want to get a bit more done before I talk about my progress. But it’s been far too long, so let’s do this.

First of all, hi, yes, I’m still working on this project. Over the past few months, there were times when progress was slow. But I’ve been tink tink tinking away with my tiny hammer whenever I can, sculpting this mountain into a monolith with as much speed as I can manage.

It hasn’t all been steady chipping, though. I’ve found ways to collapse the scope of the game, such that at this point, the bulk of my to-do list is recording, production, and sound design. Compared with what I was envisioning back in March, entire continents of work have been sheared off and cast into the ocean. I figured out what’s necessary to tell the story I have in mind, and I got rid of the rest.

Speaking of the story, I finished the script earlier this month. 64 pages; 11,326 words. Sabrina and Michelle are going to go over it with me (and record their parts) in a couple weeks, and then we’re aiming to record everything else later in August. After that, I’ll need to produce the audio, hopefully before returning to grad school at the end of the month.

In the meantime, I’ve been pulling together the system that handles progression through the game. It’s mostly done, but I’ll continue perfecting it before I entomb myself in the studio.

Here are a few screenshots:

Power nodes and a hut

About to talk to 0714E

About to talk to Laetitia

Among the foliage

Crisscrossing energy beams

If you’ve seen anything about this project in the past, I’m sure much about these images is familiar to you. The game is mostly writing and audio, and the environment has been somewhat stable for a while now. Still, I think it’s pretty.

Other updates:

  1. Exactly a month ago, Sabrina and I got married. It really was the best day of my life, and I wish we could do it all over again. I won’t gush about it here, but I’ll at least confirm that it was extremely perfect and pure.
  2. Before the wedding, I spent a couple months making a surprise nosleep/Little Witch Academia ARG for Sabrina’s bachelorette party. Sabrina’s sister, Julie (you may know her as Heart), had asked me to write clues for a scavenger hunt, and I got super super carried away. When I was packing the clues and props to be deployed across Providence, it felt like I was shipping a video game. The whole thing was designed around audio logs (on physical cassettes) hidden in bundles coated in black goop, so in that respect it basically was a video game.
  3. Since mid-May, I’ve been at MassDiGI SIP making a mobile game called Lead the Light with five other devs. It’s been an exciting and enriching process, and I can’t wait for the game to be done so I can share it.

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading.