Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Painscreek Devlog #4: Making A Narrative Work For Games

Instead of discussing the menu and UI design as originally planned, we’ve decided to take this opportunity to explain a bit further how we utilized the content in the past two blogs to make the narrative work in The Painscreek Killings. We hope anyone finding themselves wondering if they can make a story work without it being forceful or too linear can benefit from this article.

Prior to sharing this blog with everyone, we want to emphasize that this is neither the best method nor the only method to create a game like ours. Instead, we just want to share what worked for The Painscreek Killings and hope it benefits others creating a similar type of game.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Painscreek Devlog #3: Designing The Game Mechanics

(An early draft of the game flow.)

Coming up with the game mechanics shouldn't be too difficult. Since we are trying to mimic a real life investigation, that would mean we could skip anything that does not happen in real life, such as quest markers, in-game compass, items highlighting, fast travel, hint button, etc. All we need is a flashlight, a camera, a player journal, an inventory system, a photo album, an auto save/load, character spawn locations, building instances, menu options, NPC navmesh, character health bar, different endings… Wait. What just happened?

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Painscreek Devlog #2: Designing The Story

(Image of the 3-act structure found online.)

When we first started, there were two areas to consider developing. First, the story and game design. Then there’s the technical part where we need to build the game, something that we are still learning to be efficient at. The story and game design is probably the more important part of making the game succeed, so on this week’s blog, we will explain how we designed the story.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Painscreek Devlog #1: Let's Make A Game!

A few years ago, a friend of ours asked how goes our work. At that time, there were three of us and we were working on CG ads. I thought we did fine, although we were always hunting for jobs. He then asked, “Have you considered creating your own IP?”

So in June 2012, we decided to try our hand at game development, all in the hope of creating our very own intellectual property. Plus, having passive income is a nice change for us. By Summer 2013, we were done with our last freelance job and started working full time on The Painscreek Killings. Looking back, we realized we were very naïve to quit everything and moved to something we have never done before. But at that time, it seemed like the best choice to make.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Announcing 'Painscreek Devlog' Series

As The Painscreek Killings is now on the market, we looked back and reflected on our five-year journey. Through a series of articles, we will illustrate the problems we faced, the breakthroughs we had, and how we brought an idea into a full commercial product. We hope anyone interested in or currently making a mystery solving walking simulator can benefit from our experience.

Hope to see you all next month.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Available Now On Steam And Green Man Gaming

We are happy to announce that our first game, The Painscreek Killings, is now available for purchase on Steam and Green Man Gaming.

In this game, you play a female journalist whose job is to investigate a 4-year old murder case in a town called Painscreek. You are free to roam anywhere to proceed in your investigation. Using your camera and power of deduction, you are to find the truth about the murders that happened there. When your game ends, you will need to point out who the killer is.

Key features of the game:
  1. It's a semi-open world game. This means it's not a linear game and there's no set path to follow. You explore wherever you want, most of the time based on clues/hints you found.
  2. You can end the game anytime. If you think you know who the killer is, you can leave Painscreek and submit your findings to your editor. The results you choose will be published in tomorrow's paper.
  3. It's a traditional murder mystery. You will find yourself photographing important stuff in-game, and maybe even jot down notes outside the game for easier reference.
  4. There's no handholding and no quest markers. All the puzzles are there right from the start rather than hidden until you found a clue about it, and there's more than one way to crack some puzzles. Should you come across them early in the game and have them solved, you can quicken your investigation time.
For those who are thinking of getting it, Green Man Gaming is currently offering a 24% discount on its site.

Friday, September 15, 2017

New Trailer Out

We have a new trailer for The Painscreek killings. Hope you enjoy our new trailer and add our game to your wishlist.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Finalizing Our Game

(The books are sinking into the shelf.)
The past two weeks, we have been working on bugs fixing. We added or removed props and items in our game. We worked on making badges and trading cards. We changed and added some important story plots and information to improve the flow of the story. Then we submitted the game for approval.

Friday, July 21, 2017

How We Survived Without A Programmer In Our First 3 Years

Did we have a programmer? Truth be told, we did, eventually. However, our first three years consisted of a few CG artists who just wanted to make a game. This was what happened.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Why We Use Unity

(Testing terrain and foliage in Unity 4.)

To understand why Unity was chosen for our game project, The Painscreek Killings, we have to first share a bit about our background.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Going Beyond A Walking Simulator

Everybody's Gone to the Rapture, Firewatch, The Stanley Parable, and the list goes on. The Walking Simulator genre is of growing popularity; full of new ideas and innovation, in which we also want to provide something new to the front.

To be frank, we don't exactly love the term "Walking Simulator" as it sounds dull and dispirited. The term is coined now by the public though, and we must accept it. With The Painscreek Killings, we want to create something that is more than just a walking simulator. We want players to find the hidden mysteries of what took place in a little town called Painscreek, and become investigators of their own journeys. There are no set paths that a player has to follow. The more inclined a person is to explore the nooks and crannies of the town, the more hidden secrets they can uncover.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Welcome To Our New Blog!

Hello everyone!

Welcome to our blog where we will be posting regularly about our progress, development news, feature discussion and much more. We will be posting a blog schedule in the near future but until then, keep checking back for new posts. Thank you for stopping by everyone. Have a safe and wonderful week.

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