Ghost of a Tale in Indie Statik's 100 Most Anticipated

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JeremiahPena
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Look at that, folks! Ghost of a Tale is in Indie Statik's 100 most anticipated indie games of the year: http://indiestatik.com/2014/01/01/indie-games-2014/
I compose the music for Ghost of a Tale. Follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jeremiahpena
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Seith
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Yay for us! :D
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david
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Terrific stuff!

It is great to see GOAT getting on the radar of video game journalists, even while it is still deep in development.

:D
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evilkinggumby
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I am happy ot see this, but totally not surprised. Everyone and their mother wants this game. :) how could they NOT :)
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KwisatzHaderach
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evilkinggumby wrote:Everyone and their mother wants this game. :)
And their grandmother!

Nice to see the game is so anticipated! It is in good company too, as far as I can say; pretty swell list.

I'm unsure of the game description, if it really captures what the game will be about in the end. It feels a bit off to me, uninspired. But who am I to judge at this point (maybe Seith even wrote it himself?).
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evilkinggumby
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KwisatzHaderach wrote:
evilkinggumby wrote:Everyone and their mother wants this game. :)
And their grandmother!
Hey don't forget Grandfather!

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I was talking about various fundraisers I had backed with a friend that also usually helps kick stuff off and looked at my history and began to see this trend. I think almost every one that got funded has managed to blow past their expected release date and will likely end up releasing anywhere from 4-6 months or more after it. :)

So that means games with a whole team of people (at least 1 coder, 1 digital artist, 1 concept designer, 1 composer/audio tech and 1 director/levell designer) struggle to get it done when they figure they could. In some cases the game they're making is already fairly finished and the kickstarter is to give it polish and professionalism.

All this considered I look at Seith and his endeavors and really I don't see how he has gotten so much done alone. I know he has help for certain aspects of the engine, but beyond that the climb for him looks..monumental. I wish I knew more about the Unity engine and doing 3d characters so I could help. :) So total respect to him and if/when this project ends up running long and people are itching with anticipation.. or worse.. grow apathetic and forget about it, I'll just be here happy and patient. :)
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david
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KwisatzHaderach wrote:I'm unsure of the game description, if it really captures what the game will be about in the end. It feels a bit off to me, uninspired. But who am I to judge at this point (maybe Seith even wrote it himself?).
Actually Kwisatz, you are exactly right imho... the GOAT description on the main blog page, above the video, is bland and uninspired.

*shamed cough*

I have to confess that it is mine. I'll update it very soon though :idea:
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evilkinggumby
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Combat is inspired by Dark Souls,
This.. i am a little iffy on. Dark souls (and it's original, Demon Souls) are hardcore brutally punishingly tough combat games. they are satisfying and well made, and they have a loyal following of folk willing to muster the patience and determination to master and finish the game.. but is that what this game is about?

Using that comparison may very well attract a lot of hardcore gamers who, if the game is not akin to that challenge, will be very critical of the game. on the other side, if the game IS that hard to do (in terms of combat) a lot of the less hardcore gamers who think the game is going to be fun puzzle stuff with some combat will be turned off because of the scathing difficulty..

So this makes me really wonder which way the game is going to go. I'm not one for Dark Souls level hard combat. I don't mind action games but when you cite that game as what GOAT is inspired by.. it makes me very fearful (and I imagine others may also second guess it).
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david
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Sorry, I was thinking of this description underneath the video on the first page of the site, the blog page."Ghost of a Tale is the adventure of a minstrel mouse exploring the mysterious and dangerous island of Periclave."

Were you folks thinking of something else? :oops:
  • @EvilKing... Looking at the original IndieGoGo description of GOAT, you are right. From what we know so far, combat won't be at the heart of GOAT in the same way that combat is the core of Dark Souls and Demon Souls. Seith did move away from this emphasis during the IGG campaign:

    "You shouldn't expect a straight monster-bashing action game. Nor should you expect a purely cerebral adventure game with no elements of action at all. The game will be a mixture of both genres (most commonly referred to as "action-adventure with a hint of RPG")."

    However, I do think Seith partly meant by saying "combat is inspired by Dark Souls" that the mechanics of GOAT combat (not necessarily the difficulty or frequency of occurrence) might be a bit similar to Dark Souls.
@Kwisatz and EvilKing... I agree, for me also the quality of GOAT is more important, and I'm happy to wait for an extra few months to allow Seith to add that bit of extra magic.
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KwisatzHaderach
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david wrote:Sorry, I was thinking of this description underneath the video on the first page of the site, the blog page."Ghost of a Tale is the adventure of a minstrel mouse exploring the mysterious and dangerous island of Periclave."

Were you folks thinking of something else? :oops:
.
Yes, I (and evilkinggumby) was refering to the Indiestatik description, which reads:
This plucky mouse came out of nowhere last year as it emerged on Indiegogo and was successfully funded for its treacherous trip around the island Periclave. Lionel Gallat decided to take his animation skills put to good use at Dreamworks and Universal and turn them towards his own immersive Medieval adventure in which a mouse ventures for great treasures. The trip consists of travelling to the Tower of Periclave, which is where the treasure is said to be kept, but there are undead rats and other creatures that will stop the mouse. Combat is inspired by Dark Souls, and there will be plenty of secrets to find, journals to read that flesh out the game’s anthropomorphic fantasy world and clues to find to aid you in puzzle solving and general exploration.

There are a few things in there that make me scratch my head, most of which is nit-picking though. For example:

was successfully funded for its treacherous trip around the island Periclave.
Mhhh... Really? Treacherous? This term just never crossed my mind when I thought about the game. I have the feeling it was just used to have the obligatory aliteration in the text.

The trip consists of travelling to the Tower of Periclave, which is where the treasure is said to be kept, but there are undead rats and other creatures that will stop the mouse.
I find the wording strange; they WILL stop the mouse, they won't TRY to stop the mouse? What do they know that I don't know?

Combat is inspired by Dark Souls.
Well, what evilkinggumby posted is representative of how I feel about this passage.

I find the blog page video description very accurately in line with the expectations I have of the game.
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david
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Ah now I understand... the Indiestatik description... that makes more sense :D

I think that was written by Indiestatik. Yes, it is a bit askew in a few details... which is understandable when a journalist is trying to summarise 100 forthcoming games, and make them all sound interesting.

As for the blog description, imho it is accurate, but so short that it doesn't quite capture the spirit of the game, for people who are meeting GOAT for the first time.
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evilkinggumby
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I think David should write up a summary of the game's details so far as a blurb for websites to use and report on! :)

There, totally thrown under the bus.

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david
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A pox on you EvilKing :mrgreen: :lol:

But seriously, it is a good idea... an updated, detailed description doesn't exist at the moment. I might even do a press page, with a downloadable image pack.

I'll suggest it to Seith :D
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Seith
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I was surprised as well when I read the description on Indiestatik; I believe it was put together from some older information and unfortunately does not quite reflect the current state (or direction) of the game. Among which is combat. As I have stated before, combat will not be standard as it won't be possible for you to pick up a mighty sword and start killing your enemies by hitting them to death. That's just not the spirit of the game.

As a non-warrior mouse you will have to rely on your agility, cunning and ability to hide in order to make your way to the tower of Periclave. The story will be revealed progressively and there will not be too much hand-holding during the game; you'll have to pay close attention to what is said and what's visible in the environment.

The difficulty level won't be diabolical; if you get cut down to pieces then it means you've probably missed something, NOT that you're not L33T enough.

All that being said I'm still waiting to share more specifics in terms of game mechanics because I need to be certain that what I'm talking about actually works and does find its way into the final product. But believe me, it's fun! :)

Lastly, you guys have basically the most recent information about the game. And I dare say that at this very moment you're probably much more up to date with the project than any other journalist on the web...

(Oh, and we'll come up with a more accurate description for the game!)
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evilkinggumby
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Sounds pretty great then. I have to agree with David's idea of a presskit page though. If you want to really keep anticipation going and grow your marketing/fanbase it'd be better to have a simple page with images, banners, avatars, summary of the game, longer description of the game, and 1-2 short sentence summary of the game so people can use it however they need.

It would also be good to have a solid notion on the set up at this point. I Know Seith wants to keep everything under wraps, but I've kickstarted a ton of games where they were able to at least give a simple plot synopsis of the story, or in the least say how/why it all began. Something Could even be something original that may not be explicitely what is in the final game's intro.

Does the Hero mouse have a name, or will we get to name it?
Why is the hero on the island? What circumstances brought them there?
How is the island referred to by the commonfolk? (or how would the hero mouse refer to it prior to getting there?
Who is the hero mouse?


The actual write up could be anything from long world building set up to simple circumstantial description.

Example:

(as read by Stephen Frye and on the screen you see speed drawn sketches of the hero mouse at home, on a path, at the market)

*****
What is a common life?

If you asked most folk, you would be told many different things. A life spent with family and friends. A life exploring knowledge and expanding one's consciousness of the universe. A life full of laughter and cheer and good food.

Many a folk-mouse have wished for a common life. A good life. Most often, they get exactly what they wish for.

But this little mouse longed for something more. If you were to ask them "What kind of life would you prefer?" they would answer as any other mouse. But deep down, buried in their little mouse heart, there was a desire for something more. Something un-common. Something, dare we say..Dangerous.

Periclave.

(title shot fading in as sketch of mouse out on the ocean fishing and napping appears)

This was the mouses common life. Waking an hour before dawn. Striking out to Marla Moleby's to get a bucket of bait, and then setting sail. Fishing was common. The daily sunrise, in all it's orange juice and gold buttery rays and warm fried egg splendor, was also common. And even the snoring of a certain mouse on the ocean was as common as hearing gulls overhead.

(shot of bucket of wrapped snacks and fruit with sounds of snoring nearby)

This mouse knew fishing was a fairly simple task. This mouse, despite warnings, knew the easiest and best fishing spots were across the bay near the island of Periclave. And so every morning this mouse would fish, and sing, and watch as the sun cast rays across the island across the way. Some days you could see almost nothing, like an eternal fog was napping on the island. Other times, like in the worst hot says of summer, you could almost see movement on the shores.

"Ye' don't go near that place" old Marla would always say, "Ain't no good come of that fer a hunn'd year!"

"Oh, I Know. " the mouse would say, "I know well about the curse."

The mouse knew about the dark history of the island very VERY well, and only went near it to fish. Still, to be safe, the mouse made sure to stay several leagues away from it, despite the piles of fish that could be had. Why?

Tales of huge sharks and angry octopus and massive evil spirit things abounded when speaking of the island. Some, like Scry the Scrollmaker, claimed to hear voices from across the water. Others, such as Harl Habersmash, saw smoke and fires. And still others, like Mother Mothbee, could swear they heard the singing of music during a still night.

They all spoke of a magical place. A frightening place. SUCH a place. Periclave was a place no common mouse would ever want to visit.

Periclave always lingered in the minds of the Mouse Village.

On this day however, the island was very VERY common. It was none of those interesting, fascinating, frightening things people had said. Like a pebble on your path, it was of little consequence for one's morning fishing.

The weather, however, was turning an uncommon somber dark-grey-black faster than the mouse ever expected. In minutes the sea began thrashing and splashing, shoving over the bucket of grubs. Toppling the fishing pole into the cold depths. It even claimed the pail of snacks, now a small buoy drifting away from the boat.

"So much for my common day!" Say the mouse as it wiped a tear shed for the snacks. "I best get home."

A sharp CRACK sounded overhead, and looking back, the sail and mast tumbled off into the wind. Grabbing an oar, the mouse fought to turn the boat about, its' arms pumping, brow furrowed, eyes squinting against the sharp rain and cold wind.

Despite this, the storm pushed harder. The mouse rowed faster.

Periclave grew yet closer.

(fade to black as the boat dashes against something solid in the water)
*****

See that helps establish a number of things without even TOUCHING the main plot of the story at all. We don't know what will ultimately transpire on the island, we don't know what evils or beings live there. And despite getting some notion of how the hero mouse acts, we're still given a lot of latitude on how we can play out and act as that mouse.

I don't expect this will be used (to be honest that was a first draft so there is likely a TON of problems with it) but I wanted to offer an example as to what could be out there, shorter, but allowing for some idea of where this all is going.

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Last edited by evilkinggumby on Mon Jan 06, 2014 12:54 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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david
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@EvilKing... let's see what Seith will sanction, but as you know he loves keeping things under wraps.... so I'd bet heavily that he'll keep us in suspense... a lot :mrgreen:

I totally get your hypothetical description of the GOAT introduction... it is neat and cinematic! The mouse is a minstrel though, and imho this morsel is quite key to the story of GOAT.

I'm just done chatting with him on Skype. I'll put together a detailed description of GOAT for journalists, so they don't need to research everywhere to get to the bottom of what GOAT is all about. You might see it on a new press page on the site, with a downloadable pack of high res images they can use. It should be finished in a few days.

Good suggestion EvilKing and Kwisatz :D

and yes, the blog video description will be filled out a bit more too... for people who are totally fresh to the GOAT experience ;)
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david wrote:@EvilKing... let's see what Seith will sanction, but as you know he loves keeping things under wraps.... so I'd bet heavily that he'll keep us in suspense.

I totally get your hypothetical description of the GOAT opening... it is neat! The mouse is a minstrel though, and imho this morsel is quite key to the story of GOAT.
What, fishermouse can't also sing and play guitar? Seems like a perfect way to practice your craft without anyone around to bother. :)

LOL and yes I don't expect this to have anything to do with the final game. twas an example, little more. Every once in a while i get the hankering to write a pseudo kids bedtime story, so it was a fun little moment of creativity.
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david
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@EvilKing... for all I know, you may be exactly right in every single detail. Seith keeps me totally in the dark too. :mrgreen:

I swear, there is an entire library of books in you, eager to leap from your fertile mind onto the page.
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evilkinggumby
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david wrote:@EvilKing... for all I know, you may be exactly right in every single detail. Seith keeps me totally in the dark too. :mrgreen:

I swear, there is an entire library of books in you, eager to leap from your fertile mind onto the page.
Dawww.. youuu.. yer such a flatterer!

just imagine what'd happen if i actually learned how to make video games! lol

Unfortunately I'm too easily distracted by food..

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david
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evilkinggumby wrote:if i actually learned how to make video games!
After working for 3 years with Unreal Engine 3 (UDK) and CryEngine 3, this picture below expresses how I felt.

Getting all the elements working together really is a challenge. I'd still encourage you to get started, but in addition to the creative side, the technical side of gamemaking really is a full-time endeavor in itself.
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Caption: "While trying to get things to work properly, I think I have melted my brain" :mrgreen:
Alternative caption: "I thought this would take me ten minutes... that was two weeks ago" :mrgreen:
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evilkinggumby
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ROFL see stories like that are why I shy away from ever trying. I'll just have to resign myself to being the most prolific GoaT fanfic author. lol. Maybe do some crossovers where the Hero mouse has to go up against the Kia car commercial Hamsters...


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lol...

though those guys would be a fun alternate race in GoaT. If a sequal ever needed it. :)

Any word on that press pack ya'll are making? :) do we get to see it too?
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