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It's been a while since the last update, but things have been moving along. I've been starting work on ship decorations, improving useability after more playtesting, and wrapping up the last of the puzzles.

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What's New this Month?

It's been a while since the last update, but things have been moving along. I've been starting work on ship decorations, improving useability after more playtesting, and wrapping up the last of the puzzles (at least for the first stable release).

Artwork

Now that the puzzles are all laid out, I've started shifting focus to how the final game is going to look at feel. Up until this point, most of the artwork has been temporary (albeit in the style I'm aiming for), and I need to shift gears and start locking down content. This is especially important for the ship, because if the scales and sizes are going to change, I have to do that now before everything gets drawn.

One of my biggest concerns at the moment is that the ship is very content-heavy and busy, and the monochrome color scheme makes it difficult to read. I don't want to change the art style, but I do need to find a solution to this. I spent an afternoon sketching out some ideas:

This is the original.


Playing with colour grading and using different lighting could be a way to slit up areas of the ship and draw the eye to the current problem.


Using subtle tones or colours give a bit more depth to the ship and help make sense of the drawings.



One drastic option is making the ship white, which separates it nicely from the decoration & background behind, but almost hides the characters.


I've got a few more ideas to try, but I'd be interested to hear your thoughts or suggestions about this below!

What I'm working on, in 140 characters.

Jul 2
Diving back into puzzles for 39 Days to Mars after a fortnight's vacation.

Jul 7
Today I started work on some art to turn the square boxes into a real spaceship!



Jul 8
The ship decoration is starting to fill out the scene, albeit with temporary artwork.



Jul 9
Replacing the old "inspect" cog animation with a more readable, updated version.


Jul 21
Started integrating animations for 39 Days to Mars! I'm shifting some of these from the old format to the new, and starting to animate the ones I don't have yet.


Jul 22
Animation blending for Albert's walk cycle. It's still missing the idle state though.


Until Next Time

39 Days to Mars is drifting in and out of a playable state. It's very rough, but if you're interested in giving your feedback or helping me to test it out, get in touch!

Don't forget you can follow @philipbuchanan on Twitter for more regular updates and development pictures!

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