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Savage is equal parts inspired by the Conan stories by Robert E. Howard, my fascination with Zelda II (yes, yes, I know - the black sheep of the Zelda family), other games of its ilk (like Gargoyle's Quest) and a healthy dose of general barbarian fetishism.

The final product will (hopefully) include a varied, somewhat open world to explore, an interesting little tale filled with machismo, magic and muscles, day/night cycle, overworld hunting/tracking, lots of action/platforming, fun melee system and some mild RPG elements (item use, leveling up, gear, crafting and the like).

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Gaiden Mode

News 9 comments

Hi everyone!

Sorry for the silence through April -- allergy season plus our new location hit me pretty hard for a couple weeks which wound up getting me sick. Annoying! We invested in a neat little air purifier though, and that thing seems to be helping out big time. But enough complaining and excuse making -- onto progress!!

Boss Redux

You remember Tra Tibowt from the last update, yeah? I felt like something was missing with her to make her fight more memorable and give it more character. I decided to go back and revamp her bear companion (Mag, the Avatar of Magdragh) visually and mechanically, and allow her to ride into battle on the guy!

This gives the fight an initial, more interesting phase with different behaviors. Damaging them enough eventually knocks her off the mount and you wind up having to take them out as a pair.

New Areas

I have been going on a grayboxing rampage with the remaining levels and zones, stopping to whip up a couple necessary assets. The most recent of these being a revamped tileset to make the deep forest areas visually more exciting.


I've also done some palette swaps and some minor adjustments to some older tilesets to bring it up to snuff with the rest of the finalized ones.


These are all added to the growing arsenal of bits and pieces I'm using to crank out rooms. SO MANY ROOMS.

New Enemies and Hazards

As I grind through the room and area content, I am mopping up the remaining enemies and entities that still have to be created and dropped into the game. A couple examples are the brand new "platform wasp" and "forest ape".

The wasp enemy in particular is starting to fill a growing need for the game to include more of what I call platformer-friendly hazards. I have plenty of enemies that sort of track your movements and are largely reactionary in how you deal with them. I need more enemies like this that are more "learnable", or have a much more apparent pattern. This makes platform-heavy situations more satisfying, since you have readable obstacles that you can navigate around.

This guy, on the other hand, is a bit of a hybrid of those two enemy/hazard types. He can be set to a more static sort of artillery behavior, where he lobs boulders at you from a fixed position -- or, he can engage the player and bust out a few interesting attack moves. He is also one of the more vertically aware enemies in the game, following the player up onto, or underneath ledges and other obstacles (being a big monkey guy and all).

Here are the previously mentioned elements (tilesets, new assets and enemies) all working together:


Those are some shots from one of the new areas, "Devil's Shade", that bridges the Gosen Hills and Highlands areas of the game.

Game Flow

With all of the new elements and rooms I am creating for the game, I am slowly addressing my game flow concerns. Things like, "Is this too repetitive?" "How do I make these rooms more interesting?" have come barreling their way to the front of my concerns. Pacing things like interactivity, enemy placement, and things like powerups are a real concern for me. After all, how many times can someone smack something with a sword before it starts to get boring? Hopefully, quite a few times if the core combat mechanics are good enough, ha!

Structuring levels and rooms, I have started to notice annoying design crutches that I repeat. Like tunnel shapes and similar geography elements. It's like writing music -- you start to realize that maybe you are using similar progressions across multiple songs. This is not necessarily a bad thing in some situations, I guess, since this also evokes a certain style, but I feel it's necessary to be aware of so I don't wind up with a finished game and thousands of rooms that all feel too same-y!

Here's a bit of an example of how I sort of map out general flow and some of the critical path out:


Using visual aids like this helps in defining pacing for me, and shaping those "peaks and valleys" that compose the player's overall experience with the game.

Cinematics!

I've also, finally, gotten around to knocking out the game's more lore-heavy sequences, which will be delivered in the form of Ninja Gaiden-esque cinematics.

As of now, I've got the majority of these sequences completed, but there are still a few more that need doing.

Also, with a lot of this stuff getting wrapped up, I submitted the last bit of game footage to my friends at Escaping Westlawn Productions for the launch trailer!

Here are some work in progress screens from the visual FX shots Christine Carstairs is working on:

I am really excited to see this thing!

Progress!

So there we have it -- I am in the middle of grinding out TONS of rooms that will make up the final areas and levels of the game, and I hope to have a build finished soon that I can play through from start to finish. I can't believe I just said that - pretty unreal!

I know it's taken a lot longer than I initially planned for, and I'm sorry about that, but even more grateful for all the support and positive feedback from you all! I am continuing to work hard to make this thing fun, and a suitably brutal and bloody adventure!

Thanks for letting me share with you all! Have a great one, and I'll see ya next update!

-Matt

Un-Bear-Able!

Un-Bear-Able!

News 1 comment

Man, what an em-bear-assing headline (sorry, I can't help it. It's, like, a serious problem)! Ahem. Anyway... Progress goes on, my to-do list grows ever...

You Shouldn't Run With Knives... BUT

You Shouldn't Run With Knives... BUT

News 1 comment

Hi everybody! Sorry for the quiet during January (speaking of, hope you all had a great holiday season and your new year is off to great start!), but...

What Sorcery is This?!

What Sorcery is This?!

News 5 comments

Happy Holidays, everyone! Sorry for the lack of updates through November - I've been nose to the grindstone over here and sometimes it's hard to remember...

They (un)Live!

They (un)Live!

News 3 comments

Happy Halloween! To tie up this series of spooky inspired updates, I figured we'd end with an undead extravaganza! They're Back And loaded with all sorts...

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SAVAGE: The Shard of Gosen alpha 4.5

SAVAGE: The Shard of Gosen alpha 4.5

Demo 0 comments

SAVAGE: The Shard of Gosen alpha 4.5 - Lots of new content in this update, including shields and the undead!

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (public alpha 03)

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (public alpha 03)

Demo 1 comment

This public alpha build has been rebuilt on a new architecture, and is what I'll be using throughout development from now on. This build fixes a number...

Halloween Goodies Bag

Halloween Goodies Bag

Wallpapers 0 comments

I threw together some goodies for you (or anyone who's interested) to consume! The "bag" includes: Wallpapers, NES retro controller overlays, and a few...

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (second public alpha)

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (second public alpha)

Patch 12 comments

Second playable build, alpha 0.4.2.3 is out! - 10/21/2013

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (first public alpha)

Savage: The Shard of Gosen (first public alpha)

Demo 12 comments

So - I have shamelessly copied/pasted the following from my ​Game Jolt page (because, no sleep for a billion hours!! :D ) - I made it! I managed to...

Comments  (0 - 10 of 36)
TheUnbeholden
TheUnbeholden

Any plans on a early steam release?

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toborprime Creator
toborprime

Good grief - sorry for the late reply. IndieDB refuses to alert me to comments.

Are you referring to Early Access? I want to avoid releasing the game in that way. I don't think a game like this would do well in a retail system like that, since it's not a "living" game - i.e., procedurally generated with tons of modular elements added over time each year, and all that.

It would be like playing Super Mario Bros. 3 or something, where like, every month a new zone or handful of levels was added.

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LordofGilneas
LordofGilneas

Is Savage dead? We haven't received any news.

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LordofGilneas
LordofGilneas

OH MY GOD SO MUCH DAMN AWESOMENESSS!!!!!! I always did feel the skeletons were lacking something! Now they are much more different! In Alpha 4.5 I thought they were TOO easy to beat (Though that could be due to the fact after getting Wrym Scale, everything barely did damage). Maybe some foes get armor piercing attacks (Like stabbing ferociously, or simply wielding natural piercing weapons like spears).

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Nembo
Nembo

Looks awesome! Keep it up.

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toborprime Creator
toborprime

Thanks very much!

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Silmarill_SK
Silmarill_SK

It looks really cool, gotta track it!

I see that the release date is TBD, but do you have any rough date when it will be released?

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toborprime Creator
toborprime

Thanks! I wish I had a good answer for ya, but I'm gonna have to go with the obnoxious "soon".

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LordofGilneas
LordofGilneas

I can wait... But not for too long toborprime.....

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Savage: The Shard of Gosen
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