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Post news RSS Demo Delay - New Projection February 15th - Social Media Blackout

The deadline is coming up fast and rather than rush it and winding up handing off something that I haven't shown to a single other person, I'm going to give myself an extra 15 days. Why is it so close? Why 15 when I said 7? What happened? Check in to find out more.

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TL;DR: There's a lot to do. The new date should give me the time I need to do it and then some for buffer and probably should have been the original date all along. To get the details, keep reading, but that's the gist. Okay, back to work!

Hello, History of the Demon Girl Watchers!

Thank you again for diligently waiting for the demo to arrive - you have no idea what it means to me as a first time developer to have people waiting to play an idea that popped into my head last year and got me to go indie. I'm honored by your attention.

Unfortunately, these weeks of crunch have really taken their toll and the demo will just not be ready by the 31st - and trust me, that's a good thing for you. After getting about 5 hours of sleep a night and working by myself all day/every day on the game, the original deadline I set is just too close for comfort. Trust me when I say that I'm very sad that I won't be releasing tomorrow. I was looking forward to the milestone (I was gonna make cake!), but it's just not going to happen.

So what happened? Why is the new date the 15th? That's over two more weeks when it was supposed to be done tomorrow! Wasn't the fallback the 7th???
Yup. If you haven't noticed by now, I'm very open about my process as an indie developer - especially a new and solo developer. After working for two major game companies for over a total of 6 years, I wanted to make being open with my fans a goal. Since Demon Girl IS my first game, it has been a huge learning experience for me and was always going to be. Bear with me on this, but here comes a bunch of insight into the project and my indie life.

The Deadline
The deadline, for better or worse, was an artificial one when it was first published here. I know that sounds horrible, but hear me out. As an indie dev with no funding but my own savings, I'm battling going broke, but I am also my own payroll and my own manager. This means that if the game doesn't meet the deadline, I don't get fired and the game doesn't stop, but I just continue to drain my savings and eventually become a street urchin. It's not the GREATEST result (I guess I like porridge enough...), but for a little while longer I have the savings to do it, so the deadline is totally up to me.

Then why publish the deadline at all? You could've just taken your time!
I could have. You're right. BUT! I was getting lazy and I needed to give myself a goal that would kick me into gear. The deadline was originally set and posted thinking that no one but me would care and it would put pressure on me BECAUSE I thought no one else would pressure me enough to finish. Of course, then I started getting Watchers and "with great Watchers comes great responsibility"...or...spider senses...or something.


The point is that originally the deadline wasn't supposed to be a make or break thing and it turned into something more meaningful for me because you were so awesome and hungry for the game. Because you're so hungry and I would love to get it to you, I'm truly sorry that I can't make it happen on that original timeline, but recognize that if you're hungry, the last thing I want to do is serve you something half cooked. You'd probably barf. And while barfing's hilarious, now's not the time.

Finally, with regard to the original deadline and fallback: the 31st deadline was created on the 11th; that only gave me 20 days from then - as a first time dev, let me just say, that was a very aggressive and irrational timeline. Now that I know exactly what I can do in 20 days. Trust me when I say that an extra 15 will make a HUGE difference to whether this is a game you (or I) want to play.

Why? What's left to be done?
A lot of things that seem simple, but will take me time. I've only just started to add the HUD into the game:

I think it looks good so far, but it's incomplete. When I tried to add the missing aspects, it looked ugly. I know it's only a demo, but it shouldn't look terrible and if the only reason it DOES is because I unnecessarily pressured myself to get it out into the world, then I have no one to blame when everyone goes "This is ugly." and puts it down/closes it after 3 seconds.

So, now, take what I just told you about the HUD and apply it to a LOT of the demo I wanted to give you: Enemy functionality still needs to be tweaked, there are whole aspects of gameplay that still need to be added (and only THEN balanced), and then...

The biggest reason that the demo is simply not coming out tomorrow is I realized that even if by some miracle (deal with The Devil?) I were to finish it in the next two days and release it just before 12:00am on February 1st, it would have been played by exactly ONE person before release: me. Having witnessed "Dev Blindness" before as a tester and seeing it absolutely RUIN games, I just can't bear to take that risk with my project. I need to let my test group see this thing before I put it out into the world. If for no other reason than... I've been about 3 inches from the thing while being sleep deprived for 20 days. You WANT someone else to look at this thing before it goes out there. Trust me. Or maybe you want the game mechanics of a mad man, I don't know.

To that end, the extra days will give me time to sleep, tweak everything that needs it, and have some people look over the build so that when it finally DOES come to you, it's exactly what it should be: Ready.

So what's with the "Social Media Blackout" in the title?
I've been trying to get the game done, but I've also been posting a lot about the game, trying to showcase the work and get the word out. It's really great getting to do that stuff, but every time I sit down to write something like this, I lose time on the game. That being said, I know you'd all rather have a game to play than a letter of apology, so from now until the demo is in its wrapping up phase, I'm not going to be posting as much and that's why. I might add quick screenshots or songs once I've mixed them down, but that will probably be the extent of it for a bit since those things take very little time compared to the updates I usually do.

This was long...
Yeah, I know. :c But that's the update! The bar has been set again and I'm on it! My focus hasn't waived one bit and I'm not slowing down, I'm just updating you all so that I can try to give you the game you came here for. I'm sorry if I lose any of you over this. If I do, I understand. To those of you who DO stay: thank you for understanding.

See you all in February!
Your Friendly Neighborhood Shadow64

HenryT77 - - 501 comments

Take it easy, men. Players have a patience :)

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