The world has changed enormously in the past couple of weeks.
For me, the city is now the most exciting part, it brings together all the mechanics in new combinations, and requires a lot of improvisation to get through. There are also more choices as to where to look for supplies, so each playthrough will have quite a different feel.
The art and atmosphere are very different, it’s lonely and bleak, instead of cramped, putrid and claustophobic. Hopefully it’ll provide a well-needed change in pace when the player arrives.
My good friend, Stephen ‘increpare‘ Lavelle came round yesterday (you should but his new game, English Country Tune, because it’s beautiful), and was the first person to test it yesterday. It took about an hour, even though I gave a lot of prompts – partly because things needed polish in the level design and AI, but also because we just wanted to get through it quicker. It would probably take longer without me backseat-playing, and that’s without even going into the sidequests. I’m surprised and pleased about this because I was concerned the game wasn’t long enough… But it’s looking like it’ll be at least 2/3 the size of game like Silent Hill 2, if the player explores some of the optional stuff.
So, what else? A lot of new items, puzzles fully implemented in the city, most of the sidequests, improvements to monster AI, meat-handling etc, adding of coloured text (which you can see above.)
Besides that, I’ve spent a lot of time on the climax of the city area, a very cool boss encounter and the final scene which leads to the final environment (which I’m going to start midway through next week.)
Also, I know I said I was going to do a dev-diary – well I have the video camera now, I’m just trying to get the right tripod / setup to do it, but it shouldn’t be long. Will have to be soon, though, as I might actually finish game itself within a month or so, with beta phase / polish early next year as planned…
We’re nearly there folks… Keep the fingers crossed everything goes smoothly and I’ll have a nice psychological survival adventure for you early next year! I genuinely can’t wait to share it with you.