Hello all! Please bear with be as today I would like to give you all a candid look at where we’re at in terms of development on Ghost of a Tale. Keep in mind that all those progress bars relate to the pre-release, not the final/complete game.
Another very, VERY important notion to understand is these bars you see are NOT all equals in terms of workload and time needed to complete them.
Now that the caveats are out of the way, let’s start the tour…
As you see there’s still some work left in the animation department. That includes a couple of animations on Tilo, some enemies and idle cycles for the NPCs.
Character models are really getting there and the props include skinned and dynamic clothes as well. I’ve been using a different export technique and the result is a much better framerate!
Environments still require some work to make sure everything is complete and works well with the streaming system and the quests.
I’ve started doing a first pass on the character portraits for the dialogs; still a lot of work there but it’s going fine and it’s a pleasure to do.
The game menus are almost there but I still need to include all the graphical options and the input management choices (more on that later).
The HUD and inventory GUI all work fine. However there’s still some visual polish to do there.
I covered the AI last time and I still have to transfer the new system to a couple of enemies. Cyrille is currently making good progress on the saving/loading system and he’s done with streaming.
Day/Night cycle as well as camera management are fully functional (and have been for a while).
Regarding input support: the game is definitely made with gamepads in mind but because Ghost of a Tale is primarily a PC game it means keyboard and mouse must be supported. But I believe it should only be a matter of a few days to make sure everything works as intended.
Jeremiah is going to write a couple more tracks for the game, most importantly themes for the NPCs that will play during dialogs.
I greatly enjoy creating the sounds effects, alas it’s all a matter of time. I usually create new sounds when new animations are locked, so it usually tends to lend at the end of the process.
Dialogs are also nearing completion, thanks to Paul’s mighty efforts! We still have to do an overall pass to make sure the tone is right, the voice of the characters consistent and that we’re not too self-indulgent with the sheer amount of text. But I’m very happy with where we’re at!
The Misc Writing bar is about all the items descriptions in the database, UI words and sentences, etc… The low 50% completion seems quite scary but again it’s mostly a matter of a few days for Paul to take care of this.
Quests are also almost done. We do some neat tricks with them; for example you’re told to accomplish certain tasks but if you chose to do things differently then new tasks are revealed!
So that wraps up this presentation of the state of things with Ghost of a Tale! Don’t hesitate to ask about topics that are not mentioned in the comments section.
And since I know charts can be a bit unpalatable here’s a look at an animated Kerold, the old pirate frog. Actually this idle animation cycle is an old one and many details are missing (hat’s feathers weren’t rigged, etc…); it was basically a rough blocking pass but I thought you guys might still get a kick out of it.
The question that many of you will ask is “What’s the release date?”. As I said last time the goal is still to do a pre-release before the end of the year. We are going to do our best to make it happen but I won’t hide the fact that it is going to require a tremendous effort to both achieve that goal AND be happy with the result.
Because ultimately, as I said before (and I will say time and time again) I will never put out something that feels broken or rushed. Even if we’re just talking about a pre-release (by definition a non-complete game) I want what’s there to be thoroughly enjoyable.
So you can take my word for it; Paul, Cyrille and I are going to be working extremely hard in the coming weeks! Wish us luck and see you all in the next update!