Details about the pre-release

Nov 302015

Welcome to this new update! Those last few weeks have been extremely intense and the coming ones are likely going to feel the same. There were a couple of trying tech-scares ranging from corrupted project to game-breaking bugs and difficult-to-pinpoint issues (to say it politely).

But I want to say I’m overall very happy with the progress we made; Cyrille is debugging the save/load process and Paul is finishing some last-minute dialog rewrites plus writing all the items/costume descriptions. I’m concentrating on animations, modeling, set-dressing, interface, debugging, etc…

ScreenShot 2015_11_08 13;38;23001_2

I recently amped up the rats’ speed and animation when they’re aggressive and it’s crazy how the amount of tension shoots up when they’re onto you. So far it was possible to outrun them fairly easily as they stuck to their relentless, lumbering gait at all times. But now when they’re coming at you they really mean it! You’ll have to take my word for it but it makes the hiding mechanics much more than a gimmick as you cannot escape your assailants indefinitely; you HAVE to hide eventually.

ScreenShot 2015_11_21 23;17;31001_2

Now regarding the pre-release, if I take a step back and look at my charitable wish of doing it within the upcoming three weeks I have to say it looks REALLY tight. Not only because of the amount of work left to do, but also of the required time for playtesting and subsequent bug-fixing. And I’m certainly not about to start taking any shortcuts.

This feeling is compounded by the overwhelming wave of support that you guys have been expressing over the last couple of months which can be summed up as “please take your time, don’t rush it, make it good”. And I’m very grateful for that indeed.

Alright, so when the initial pre-release is made public, what exactly can you expect from it? In terms of content it’s roughly 20-25% of the final game. It sports a little less than thirty quests (including both main and secondary ones) and lets you explore two main areas, both indoors and outdoors.

ScreenShot 2015_10_23 16;13;06001_2

As I was saying, some game mechanics will not make it into the pre-release. But what’s there will give you a very accurate taste of the game’s atmosphere and scope. In terms of playtime we can’t be certain yet but it should be at the very least a couple of hours.

In terms of localization, the pre-release might be English-only at first but rest assured we will localize it as soon as possible (basically when money allows it). We’ll add French, Italian, German and Spanish to start with. Then we will expand to other languages after that (I’m hoping Polish, Portuguese, etc..).

And that about covers it for this update. In the next one I’ll talk (among other things) about the minimum and required specs for the game. As usual if you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to post them in the comments.

Oh and one last thing: I can’t go into any details about it yet but for you guys wondering if Sony is aware of the game and if they’re interested in helping us bring it to their newest console… the answer is “yes” and “yes”… 😉

  62 Responses to “Details about the pre-release”

  1. Sure thing, take your time. That first impression will be very important.

  2. Très impatient d’essayer, mais surtout, surtout, ne précipite pas les choses. Comme le dit Oursique, la première impression est très importante, je préfère attendre qua d’être déçu 😉

    Et puis comme d’habitude, mais je ne m’en lasse pas: magnifiques screenshots! L’éclairage et la DA sont toujours aussi impressionnants.

    • Merci Thierry! En effet, je suis tres conscient que pas mal de youtubers risquent de s’emparer de la pre-release et de streamer dessus (ce qui est en soi une bonne chose bien sur). Donc pour beaucoup de gens la qualite de la pre-release sera determinante dans leur decision de prendre le jeu ou pas.

  3. Please take your time, Seith! It looks and reads very promising. Thank you!

  4. Impressive, Ghost of a Tale looks very interesting.
    What about the Russian localization?

  5. Great work!

    Please add Japanese to your list of languages! Japan is now a HUGE market for Steam! Please do not let this chance slip by!

  6. I have meant to ask in the past, but will there be a Windowed mode instead of full screen only?

    • Hi Tannim. Yes, it should be possible to run the game in windowed mode. May I inquire why you’re asking specifically about this?

      • I don’t why he asks this, but I use two monitors and in previous os before Win10, not every game would run in full screen while I have a video or something on the other monitor, in border less full screen or window mode that problem would not happen, maybe that’s why he asks.

      • Still got fuel for the hype train, so you can build up few more stations before I arrive ;-). I hope the game does well, I guess it has potential for future expansions…pretty please? I like how rational you are with your resources, would hate something like Trine 3 happen to a game like yours.

      • Sorry, I didn’t remember to look again until now.

        Games in the past have crashed in full screen and taken windows down with them. A few games crash when run in fullscreen and may only run correctly in windowed mode for whatever reason. I need to pay attention to other things in the task bar in case of important messages and things happening in background at times and prefer windowed mode for that.

        I just don’t like running games fullscreen.

        I think I replied to my own comment the first time. I will attempt to delete that reply. If I cannot, you may delete it.

    • Sorry, I didn’t remember to look again until now.

      Games in the past have crashed in full screen and taken windows down with them. A few games crash when run in fullscreen and may only run correctly in windowed mode for whatever reason. I need to pay attention to other things in the task bar in case of important messages and things happening in background at times and prefer windowed mode for that.

      I just don’t like running games fullscreen.

  7. I’m actually starting to consider buying an Xbox One just for this…

    • Do it 🙂 xbox one is a great console, got one… Also PlayStation is not bad at all but I prefer xbox :3

    • You still have some time to decide… 🙂

      The PC version will probably look better (if you have a gaming PC that is), but I understand people wanting to just lean on their couch to play!

  8. That one last thing is what totally made this update!

  9. YES you got Sony’s attention too. SWEET that’s great new for you man. I am happy for you 🙂

    Glad to hear it’s coming along still, despite some major maker’s migraine’s. 🙂 You rock.

    I only got the regular digital release so no early access for me but I am patient and psyched to see when it hits a final status. Sounds like the tweaking and polish is really paying off.

    Best wishes!

    • Yay! Regarding the pre-release bit you never know, just try and get in touch with the developers, I hear they wouldn’t be opposed to sending Steam keys to long-time supporters… 😉

  10. we’ve been her for a few years whats a little longer? i mean Undertale had updates where he said it would take some time to finish, and look what patience got us there, one of the best games ever, so yeah I’l wait :3

    • Seconded! If you can afford it, stick with squishing bugs, polishing and adding content. Not to say that everything in show so far doesn’t look stunning! Going just by the visuals, AAA titles coming out in 2018 will be having a hard time to compete 😁

      Great to hear about Sony, congrats Seith! GoaT deserves all this attention and then some!

    • Thanks for your patient support, Neverarine! 🙂

  11. Thanks for the update! Can’t wait to give it a test.

  12. Nearly 30 quests for 1/4 of the game is already impressive ! :O
    Does it means that we’ll have something like 100 quests for the overall game, or those 25% are mainly related to the world we’ll have to explore, maybe both ? 😀
    Anyway take your time to polish your Jewel Seith, i’m so happy to read that it’ll shine on last gen consoles, players are going to love it there.
    Good luck to you and team mates for all the hard work left to do, geat sucess is on the way.

    • Hehe, it’s a little too early to be able to answer those questions. Probably a little bit of both. 🙂

      As always, thank for your long-standing support, Ghibli!

  13. Honestly, you do such a good job of keeping us updated with interesting posts, screenshots and animated gifs that the waiting isn’t even that hard. You take your time! We just love watching you work.

  14. I can ony chime in and say, take your time, you want to make it good, not meet any arbitrary deadline! I am looking forward to the prerelease, it will be a lot of fun to finally see and play it for myself 🙂

  15. unreal. this looks fantastic. I cannot wait to get lost in this world. I’ve shown my 7 year old daughter the pics, and she is excited too. Just got a PS4 for black friday, and I want this game to be on it. Glad to hear the Sony news!

  16. I really don’t know whether to get this for my PC or Xbox One… I’ll defiantly be getting it for one of them but if it impresses me enough, I’ll get it for both 😀

    • Thanks for the endorsement, Dwayne! 😀

      If you have a gaming PC I would advise you get it on PC because it will probably look better, but it really depends on your rig’s specs of course.

  17. You mentioned Sony in your update, what about Microsoft and the Xbox One?

  18. Definitely take your time! I’m really looking forward to this game, but every week that goes by means it’s getting better!

  19. […] update, which can be read here,  first touches upon the revisions and fixes the team are making to ready the game for release, […]

  20. prerelease, thats awesome. i’ll hold out for the xbox release as hard as that’ll be. thanks for doing something so inspired, it really stands out

    • Thank Thompson! If you really want to have a complete experience right away then yes, it’s probably better to wait for the Xbox One version (which will happen after the PC version is complete).

  21. Save load process can be mins mumbling complex, especially in Unity, which I believe you are using. I do hope you aren’t using a lot of co-routines as serialising those is a very arduous task indeed!

    Absolutely right, for what it’s worth, stick t it and don’t compromise quality. A few weeks or months makes little difference to your customers now, other than not taking the time could turn a good or super thing sour.

    Good luck and keep up the fine work!!!

    • Hi Ian. Thanks for your support! I think I can safely say we have the saving system under control now. The most difficult part is making sure everything stays consistent when (re)visiting all the areas. Since we don’t have any loading screen (except when loading the game itself for the first time of course) we need to make sure everything is restored correctly and seamlessly when moving across the world.

  22. I’m glad to hear Sony is listening too (especially since I don’t have a PC anywhere near capable of playing games younger than 8 years old, haha), so I still will have a chance to play this game.

    I guess now all I can hope for (just for the completionist in me as well as my primary console) is if Nintendo is paying attention to this, either for Wii U or the upcoming NX.

    • It’ll be interesting to see how Nintendo’s next console fares from a technical point of view. If it’s at least as sturdy as the Xbox One or PS4 (and if Unity supports it) then it could happen, who knows… 🙂

  23. *puts on ghost of a tale trailer music to read update*

    The screenshots look wonderful, especially liking the outdoor one!

    Personally don’t mind bugs in a pre-release, as in my opinion it’s where the bugs go to die, but I can agree that the first impression for the majority of people will be quite important, so do as much as you can, then if (if my laptop can handle it) I’ll help report as many bugs as I can, as I assume many others will be happy to help as much as possible.

    Good to hear Sony will help expand the audience as well!

    • Thanks Jimmey! Bug reporting is indeed going to be extremely useful (even though we’ll do our best to eliminate all the ones we see prior to pre-release).

  24. Good news! Excellent news! Glad to know you actually want to take your time, unlike certain other game designers… I can’t wait! Well I can but you get what I mean. Amazing stuff.

  25. I just picked up a PS4 today. Looks like I have another game to look forward to in the future! I was going to grab it on PC, but my wife would enjoy this game better from the couch.

    Out of curiosity, have you made a video diary of everything you’ve been doing, and do you plan to release it if so? A “making of” Ghost of a Tale would be as much fun to watch as it has been to read about.

    • There’s no video diary (sorry) but we are keeping tracks of everything and it would be nice to be able to write a “making of” sort of book at the end. But as always it’s all a matter of finding the time of course.

      Maybe a Ghost of a Tale lecture/post-mortem would be enough… 🙂

      • A post-mortem would indeed be enough! I love reading those anytime a dev sits down for one.

        Keep at it though! No need to start working on dessert now when your plate is full still!

  26. Awesome to see all the progress Seith. From your CryEngine days to Unity. Can’t wait for it to come to steam and so I can buy it right away 🙂

    • Thanks Artruo. Indeed, the CryEngine was the engine that definitely attracted me to video games as a creative tool. I’m just glad Unity’s visual fidelity skyrocketed since I decided to switch. 🙂

  27. This game looks incredible! You definitely have yourself a customer when this game comes out! (hoping your SONY news translates to a PS4 port). Also this may have been answered earlier, but are there any plans for an artbook with your sketches, characters, concept art? I absolutely love the look of the game and this would be a great addition! Anyways, best of luck and looking forward to experiencing the world you all have created!

  28. mentioning it on my blog at present, I hope that like Elite Dangerous, we can buy an early edition (for XB1), so we can do some play testing (whilst your treasury coffers fill up somewhat), the screens and YouTube look awesome and I am shocked that it has not gotten more media exposure (I learned of the game yesterday). Can’t wait to see the final version.

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