📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #13
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Thread: 📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #13

  1. #1
    Matt's Avatar

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    📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #13

     



    ISSUE #13                         THE VALE, QUILL                         29 DEC 2017                         ONE YEAR




    A Post About Signposts
     



     
    Following on from last week, we discussed a fair bit and got a better sense of where we stood and how to go from there. So then came the hard part of it immediately being Christmas just after we'd started setting the ground work of talking more! Fortunately, there was enough to go on and for me, as I didn't have too many social commitments, it was pretty much business as usual (though I better write an IOU to myself to have a bit of a break another time!).

    As communication was a bit quieter it did give me a chance to go head first into a bunch of feedback and make some progress. I also started organising myself in a few different ways. In particular, a shared task system so it's easy for everyone to chip in on what they feel is important; along with doing some asset organisation and 'housecleaning' which makes it a lot easier to browse and locate everything (now that we are into the multiple hundred of image files and headed that way with audio too!).

    To pick out one game bit that I'm happy to have progressed on, there's been some work on signposts to make them more useful and to also indicate which has been seen. Sometimes it's hard spending so many hours making a game while maintaining perspective to know how to teach players mechanics and make it feel less of a chore, so hopefully this setup helps in that respect. Time for me to get back to it as we're really hoping to put together a good internal end of the year build with which we can measure up our progress. Happy new year to all our readers!
    Naff Laughs and Paragraphs
     

    It was finally time. I had some in-game books to write, plus task and item descriptions. I typed and the words flowed naturally. And as I typed, I laughed. The puns started to form and sing and dance on the screen. And as the puns danced, so I laughed more at their funny prancings.

    Finally, I stopped and read my output. I sniggered and chortled and in one case I actually wept with laughter. I had excelled myself. A few hours passed and I read my work again. I didn't laugh as much. My face remained mostly grim. What in Dicken's name had I written? Nobody born outside of 1970's England will get any of these references!

    An example...

    The description for Strawberry Jam was "For Eatin' Trifles". Nobody is going to think "Oh yes! Eton Rifles by The Jam. Very clever!" Most of our players won't even know who The Jam are, never mind their output. And thus, this is how things are written at PixelCount Studios. I type stupid vague stuff that only I laugh at. Later, I read it from the viewpoint of a normal human being and then I change it.

    Often I change it to something just as obscure.

    So now Strawberry Jam has this description: "What musical strawberries do." And in the cold light of day as I read it again, it is less amusing. Time to think of another description for that item. And thus the cycle continues...


    It's About Time
     



     
    Time's a funny thing. As I write this, it's incredibly dark outside my windows and, presumably, many other windows nearby. However, as I've been keeping odd hours of late, I suspect that the sunrise will be upon me by the time I finish writing this. Meanwhile, Neal and Charlie are probably finishing their lunch. As I sit here pondering time, I'm also reminded that daylight savings in the US is a few months away on 11th March. Daylight savings in the UK is 25th March. And thus, for a glorious 14 days, the time difference between myself and the UK will be only 7 hours. Normally, it's 8.

    As you can imagine (assuming you have at least the imagination of a walnut), this makes coordinating things within the team most challenging. In fact, on an average day, our work schedules only seem to align with any consistency for about 3 hours. All that to say, it goes to show the importance of good team organisation, planning, and task management - things that may seem a bit mundane on the surface but, without them, the entire machine locks up and breaks down.

    Speaking of, have you noticed how when you're miserable time slows to a crawl? But on the other hand, when you're happy...the time flies by!

    This game's development must be a very happy affair indeed.

    It's a rather sobering experience to realize that well over a year of our lives has been devoted to making Kynseed. And I should know, as sobering experiences are few and far between for me. (I jest, I jest.) When I chart the path of this journey thus far, it's hard to believe it began as a humble band of devs wondering what to do with their lives after Lionhead broke the news back on 7th March, 2016.

    A number of months later, here in the soon-to-be expired year of 2017, that band of devs got a rough little prototype put together and launched a Kickstarter. 30 days later, they were rolling in cash. Correction: they were mildly fretting about the sudden realization that this was all actually happening - there were expectations to live up to now, least of all their own. Sometime later that year, they learned to stop talking about themselves in third person as it made us sound a bit a daft. (Hey oh, mid-sentence tense change. Style points for me.)

    In that time, we've done a handful of interviews, seen Kynseed pop up in the press, have fleshed our prototype out to what's beginning to resemble something suitable for Early Access, we've seen a community rise up from the internet itself, and we've added new faces to PixelCount castle's group of developers.

    So here we are. The end of the year seem's a mere stone's throw away - assuming, that is, that you can throw a stone approximately three days into the future. The team is taking stock of the year and looking forward to what the next one may bring. In some cases, we're taking a few days off to store our reserves (which is what our dear composer is off doing this week).

    Looking back at everything that's happened in 2017, it's crazy to imagine what 2018 might hold in store for us. To be clear, 'us' is referring to all of us. You (yes you!), the rest of the community, the dev team, and even the residents of The Vale that are somewhat fictional yet somehow important to us all the same. We look forward to introducing you to them sometime next year.

    Oh, look at that. Seems there's a sunrise out my window.
    It is that time of year when cold dread fills your soul and you start to listen for 'His Arrival'.

    You try not to fall asleep. You ate a bunch of Nightberries. You wolfed down Sleeper's Zest.

    Anything to stay awake.

    But you know you will fail. Your eyes will grow heavy and you'll awaken in the stark, eerie Winter Pathway, facing that awful tree...the sky glimmering with disturbing aurora.

    And then you hear THAT sound. It gets closer and closer and from the light he appears. Your very being chills as he speaks and the tax is collected.

    You look down at your hands and try to see the changes, if any. Luckily, this time it was only 1 Year because you decided to buy just a bag of seeds that let you grow pork trees.

    Mr Fairweather jangles as he opens his Box of Delights. You try to resist...but peer inside at his wares. Ooooh! A device that translates animal noises into what they mean! A bargain at 3 Years!

    Happy 2022.



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  2. #2
    BriarRose's Avatar

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    So delightfully creepy. Guess Kynseed isn't as bright and cheery as it first appears...

    I would totally exchange 3 years to speak to animals.

    Happy New Years!!
    "I have a cloooooooooooooothing stooooooooooore in my noooooooooooose."- Jurak, Dark Cloud 2

  3. #3


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    I love these pixelcount posts. Y'all seem like you're having a good time albeit an intensive one and I cant wait to get my hands on the early access version.

  4. #4
    Carbunkel's Avatar

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    This post was totally worth a year of my life. As will be this game.

  5. #5
    Matt's Avatar

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    I just posted some new region bits, animations, and environment art that hasn't been seen before! Check it out below (and hit that ol' like and retweet button if you're into that sorta thing).



    Everything in moderation, including moderation.

  6. #6
    Matt's Avatar

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    What a peculiar issue this was! Thankfully things seem to have returned to normal in Issue #14.
    Everything in moderation, including moderation.

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