Post news RSS Dev Diary #10: Early Access Release Month Announced and More!

ManneKin: Hessler Storage FINALLY has an early access release month announced. Plus some updates to the story, a new enemy, and a website for the developer!

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Welcome back, Kin.

This post contains information taken from the DreadPassage.com website about development updates for ManneKin: Hessler Storage! There's lots to go over, so here we go!

So, what’s the development update about? Well, things have been going well with the build. If you’ve been following the Twitter account for ManneKin: Hessler Storage, then you’ll have seen a little sneak of new footage from inside Hessler Storage of myself admiring the floating particles I’ve added to light sources, only to be interrupted by the newest enemy in the game — the stalker mannequin.

The name for it is a work-in-progress, but this mannequin moves silently through Hessler Storage, it’s whereabouts only known by the lights flickering when it’s nearby. I’ve been caught out several times while testing new things on different floors. It always seems to find me.

I've also introduced the F.E.A.R. System on Twitter. Something unique to ManneKin: Hessler Storage (I believe so anyway). It takes some mechanics from other horror titles as inspiration but uses them differently.

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Professor Shaw is a capable man. But a man none-the-less. He has fears and a fight-or-flight response. The F.E.A.R system takes into account environmental situations such as lighting and enemy presence and Professor Shaw's demeanor is adjusted to either Scared or Brave.

If Tobias is Brave he can shove and kick his way out of situations, including doors and mannequins. If Tobias is Scared he will panic, and the only available options will be to run and hide. Other things will be affected. Unlocking doors will take longer as he fumbles with keys.

This system will encourage you to have situational awareness. If you're bravely kicking down doors but the noise is causing mannequins to move toward you, it will quickly swing the other way leaving Tobias scared.

I’ve also been modifying the overall story for Professor Shaw and how he came to be at Hessler Storage. I realised after the alpha demo that although it’s fine as a story that Professor Shaw has been called in to look at the strange symbol, there needs to be more to it. I found myself shoehorning in the reasons and trying to work out why he went.

This led to a lot of exposition at the beginning of the story that just wasn’t needed. It was too much and you, as the player, probably would have switched off. Instead, I’ve crafted solid reasoning behind Tobias’ choice to go to Hessler Storage and see the symbol for himself.

I can’t reveal what it is yet, but I WILL reveal it in the new trailer. Or at least I’ll be pointing you in a direction. There’s a lot to unravel with the story and how Professor Shaw is involved.

The website is also still in development and I’ll be posting more here and adding the full list of features for ManneKin: Hessler Storage in the coming weeks.

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I also put up a poll a couple of weeks ago deciding how I’ll be releasing ManneKin: Hessler Storage and Chapters won. This works out better for me, if I’m being honest, but also for you as the player. I’ll be able to release the game in parts but you won’t be paying anything for each part added, think of them all as free updates. If all goes well I’ll be aiming to release the Steam early access first chapter of ManneKin: Hessler Storage in October 2023.

The development of ManneKin has been such a great learning experience and I’ve met a lot of other brilliant and talented solo developers on the journey. Speaking to other devs has given me the opportunity to see a poster for ManneKin in another game, Partum Artifex, for which I am incredibly thankful to the developer for doing so.

If all goes well I'll be aiming to release the Steam early access first chapter of ManneKin: Hessler Storage in October 2023.

Every day of development on the game I learn something new. A lot of my time developing is spent researching how to do certain things and working out how to make things happen in Unreal Engine. So it may take some time to get things done as the development of ManneKin: Hessler Storage can be slow at times, especially as I still have a full-time job outside of game development.

I'll be revealing more soon as we've now hit over 600 wishlists on Steam, which is incredible! I'm very thankful for the community I have while developing this game and I'm doing my best to make it as good as it possibly can be.

Thanks for reading this latest update, I'll be back soon!

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