I've adopted a new development design for Triptych that should make things pretty unique. Those familiar with our last project, The Worry of Newport, will be familiar with the concept of story-first gaming design at Dark Craft Studios. Wherein the primary objective of the title is simply to walk forward, read books, solve puzzles (maybe), absorb the environment and lore and ultimately wind up the experience.
Triptych is being designed and advertised as an expansion or revisit to this niche. We are intent on adding cinematic cut scenes, flash back, and game play set pieces to expand upon what the player's experience is. Usable items can be gathered and used later on in levels to make them easier or to open new paths and "enemies", albeit not in the strictest sense, will be introduced. But the problem for me has been on when and where to add these game play devices to the experience. Many development builds have had minor pacing and aesthetic issues that feel clunky or too back-ended and unbalanced. Rather than risk a Worry of Newport - Part 2 fiasco of just winging it and not asking for fan feedback, we're pleased to announce that a Chapter-By-Chapter private demonstration and game testing series will begin in the coming weeks. The players themselves will be able to suggest to us places to add a puzzle or game play "scenery", areas where it actually doesn't work, and any polish we'd need to do to optimization or visual design.
Sign-up sheets for this private fan-feedback session will be released momentarily. To get in before the sign-ups in the coming days, just comment here or PM me.
This is a part of our ongoing development model of AAA quality and fan-first treatment. The private testing phases for each chapter will ensure the absolute best experience when the entire download goes gold later on in the year. We already have a number of testers in our studio, but by reaching out to the community, we can craft the ultimate experience within Triptych, demanded and fine tuned by Lovecraft and Horror fans.
Our first trailer has been released, showcasing two minutes of environmental level design as well as hinting at the interior game play of the "tunnels" in Chapter 2, as well as some sweeping landscape cutscenes. The opening quote foreshadows a lot of events in Jeremiah Stone's and Dorian Caulm's lives. A second trailer to be released before a week from now should include back and forth dialog from both characters, samples of book pages, some new environments and more "directed" shots rather than in-eye in-character FPS scenes.
In a notable feature coming this weekend we are going to reveal much about the story the player's will experience, including the pains and woes and redrafts, biographies of the characters, a detailed view of the writing team's members and their distinct roles within Triptych. Also to be included will be a short story, titled The Moon, which gives an alternate history look at the Sarconians, and what was their original draft, written by C-zom. It will be the first of three flash fiction stories uploaded directly to Triptych's Moddb page, expanding on the background mythos and giving players a look at the "world" around the main story arc in the game. After these three flash fiction pieces will come a detailed in-lore short story around Jeremiah Stone and Dorian Caulm's histories together before the events of the game, which will be around 20 pages in length.
Our goal on rapidly expanding the media library of Triptch is successful thus far, netting over 40 new trackers on the Moddb page. A new arsenal of story information, short stories, screenshots, and the story trailer should continue the trend will into the last stretch of October. Until next time,