How did you spend your summer? In Team Emilia’s case, it’s been a bit less fun in the sun and more of a mad dash to get our first gameplay demo wrapped up. Our programmers – or as Michael likes to call them, the “New Wizard Gods” – have been wearing their keyboards thin tweaking, tweaking, and then tweaking some more while the rest of the development staff turns Grumpy Witch inside-out in search of those pesky bugs.
The good news: our builds are now stable enough that we’re not just worrying about whether AI is triggering when it’s supposed to, or how to stop Emilia from being catapulted towards the heavens every time she brushes against a crate. The focus at this stage is more on balance, fine-tuning things like enemy strength and encounter placement to make sure we hit that sweet spot between fun and challenging.
That’s not to say our artists have been idle in the meantime. Quite the opposite – they’ve spent the past week hunkered down, giving the in-game graphics a final polish and adding some slick shadow and parallax effects to the demo environments. The big payoff for all this is that we’re finally ready to send Emilia out into the world: come August, we’ll make our demo available to the general public and kick off our crowdfunding drive.
Finally, a quick personnel note: going forward, the highly capable Jenn Williamson, Grumpy Witch’s Producer, will also be stepping into the role of Director. Her new position means she’s overseeing the game’s overall vision as well as the daily nuts and bolts of development – a big responsibility, but as anybody who’s worked with Jenn can tell you, she’s just the person for the job.
See you next month!