It's come to that time again where it's time to update you all and give you a little sneak peek at everything that's been going on for the last few months on our game Thanatophobia.
Firstly I'd like to address our last update where we released our first proper teaser trailer. We were absolutely overwhelmed by the response from the community and would like to say thank you to everyone who commented, liked, subscribed and shared the video. We are about to hit 30,000 views, but the 15,000 we got in the first day really was a nice reward for us after such a hard working slog to get this far!
Since the trailer video, we've done a -huge- amount of work updating the textures, scene dressing and improving materials throughout the different areas of the game. We have also done a completely new pass on the texture maps for the main character, Sam, bringing his quality up dramatically.
Over the past few months we've been hard at work creating hundreds of "smalls" models to help fill out the environments and give them a much more realistic and lived-in feel. Alongside this we've done new passes on a lot of the larger prop pieces, bringing up the quality across the board, concentrating on trying to stabilise our overall texture density across the game. This has helped making the props fit together in the scenes, without noticing a difference in quality between props due to texture size/detail and the technical ability of the different modellers we've had working on the
project so far.
In game prop paintings
Another addition to the game are our oil painting props that include over forty unique, contemporary and classically themed paintings created by Jackie Pearce (yep, we are related :D).
Click here [Saatchionline.com] to visit Jackie's page on the prestigious Saatchi Online gallery, where you can see some of her amazing work. An example, in game, can be seen below:
We are currently testing all of the puzzles and the general interaction-based flow of Thanatophobia, and the current bug list has dwindled to almost nothing. As it stands, I've actually now finally managed to play the game from beginning to end (minus a small number of features we are waiting for implementation), and even knowing exactly what to do, the solutions to all of the puzzles, not reading any of the clues/notes and with no enemies, it takes a sizeable amount of time. This is giving us hope that when all the different elements of the game are finished, the players should have a lengthy and varied experience ahead of them.
Character models and motion capture
We've recently made the decision to completely overhaul Sam's animation set and improve the quality and diversity of actions/mechanics. This has lead us to realise we need motion capture gear, so we have just invested in a set of cameras, and other bits and bobs, so we can grab all of the motion capture data that we need. The gear is currently being tested with a few trial runs, so hopefully soon we will be able to start working on a complete new set of anims for Sam.
As far as the character modelling for the project is concerned, we have now completely finished with all of the enemy models/animations, and also an array of other character models that are... not enemies (let's try not to spoil anything).
I keep getting asked if we are a big studio
No. No, we are not at all. The core group developing the game are all working for free in our spare time. The hope of a bad-ass portfolio piece, a huge amount of practical experience, and hopefully a published indie game is keeping us going strong. Oh, and don't forget our love of hard work creating something that really means something to us! Currently there are four of us working on the game (some more sporadically than others, damn you real life for getting in the way), but every member, past and present, have literally put hundreds of hours (some thousands) into the development of Thanatophobia. So to everyone that's helped us make the dream become a reality in one way or another: A BIG THANK YOU!
I'll be adding a few new screenshots, and removing some of the older ones that are no longer relevant. All of the screenshots are taken in game whilst testing, but wont necessarily show the final quality of the completed game. I'll try to throw a few more up over the coming week too. Hope you enjoy!
Next update: enemy spotlight
For the next update I'm planning on showing off a few of our character models (without ruining the game too much), so keep an eye on us, like us on Facebook.com and follow us on IndieDB for future updates! If you've made it this far; thanks for reading and please throw us a comment below if you liked it!
P.S If you missed out on our teaser trailer, look no further: