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Naila

Compulsion Team
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Everything posted by Naila

  1. Céline Hi ! I've got some updates on stealth. We now have stealthy high bushes in the game! When crouched while in them, you're basically invisible if no hostile NPCs noticed you before. That offers new stealth options for the Level Designers, and being hidden so close to the enemy is very enjoyable. Next we're trying to figure out if adding more UI feedback will help you guys more to know if/why you're detected. It is a big discussion at the office as the UI can break the immersion and make the players ignore the other audio/visual cues we worked on. We’re also considering adding a Lean mechanism, but this is under discussion as well. On another note, I wish you a great Christmas and a happy New Year celebration ! One week of holiday might allow me to finish Xenoblade Chronicles 2 and start Dishonored: Death of the Outsider. Maybe. Michael It’s my last working week of the year and I’ve been continuing to look at combat primarily, but it’s also the season of goodwill so I’ve been handling some requests from the other team members, and fixing up some bugs. For combat I’ve been hooking in some more animations and I did a quick prototype of a feature we discussed last week for a quick throw that could be used in combat, without having to unequip and swap weapons. It worked but it’s not necessarily solving any problems that are very big, so it’s still under consideration. Next week I’ll be heading back home to England, to relax, see family and play games. I enjoy playing with the PlayStation VR with my family, and there’s been quite a few new games and experiences to try out since the last time I saw them; looking forward to meeting Trico from Last Guardian in (virtual) real life. QA Team - Lee, Stephanie, JP and Alexina Jean-Philippe Leighton This week has been spent vetting and regressing many issues. A few developer support tasks were also completed in order to help them evaluate specific areas of the game. Christmas Holiday is coming up fast and I am looking forward to spending some time with friends and family. Throughout my Christmas Break I’ll most likely be gibbing it up in Quake Champions, exploding things in Space Engineers and playing some Terratech in my spare time. Thank you for tuning in everyone and see you soon! Compulsion Team PS: We swear this weekly was not sponsored by CD Projekt RED
  2. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph and Franzi Mike P (Diddy) Sup folks! So this merry week I have been working on a cutscene that has taken on a bit of a larger scope than I originally intended. It’s one of the first narrative beats so I figured it needed a bit more love. As it turns out, if any of you get the reference: “Pitcher la vache” from Monty Python, then you’ll probably like this shot. Hehehehe… So yeah, I think it’s hilarious and when you guys get around to it I hope you have a chuckle too! That’s it for me for this week, so tune in next week, same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel! Jules Hey everybody! So during this week, I've worked on few different tasks. Like I shared with you last week, we are currently working on a new death reaction. Previously for the NPC’s death, we played the hit reaction animation and we turned on the rag doll at the end of the animation. Now it's a special animation and they finish on rag doll. My second task was to make some placeholders for stealth. After that I worked on a few reaction variations for our NPCs before they join the fight. Previously we had just one and it was much too repetitive. I finished my week working on a few issues with feet sliding during combat and some animation fixes. We have reached roughly where we want to be on combat and made huge progress over the past couple of months. It is much more fun and more technical to fight the NPCs now. In the new year, it will be time to polish all of those animations. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH PH I’ve done a second art pass for the Garden District fillers. I’m really happy with the early results because we are getting something more and more organic. It takes time, though. I have to go through every filler and every encounter to check if everything is pretty and navigable for the player. Collisions are often working against me and I have to do lots of back and forth to make sure that the walking experience in the Garden District is as smooth as possible. Concerning video games, I’m still motivated to finish The Witcher 3. I’m getting near the 100 hours and still enjoying everything about it. A masterpiece I can't leave unfinished for sure! Carylitz I got the worst cough of the year, but I’m back. I have been working on some maps helping Emmanuel with the refactoring of the Village. I have been doing a lot of tests to make sure everything spawns the way it should. It’s really impressive to see the improvements in the world and see how the work of everyone is finally coming together and showing up in the maps! So I have not much to tell but that. Since this is the last weekly of the year, that means that next time it will be a year since I began working here, which is pretty awesome! And that also means that I'll have some time to play some video games during the Christmas break so I'm looking forward on finally finishing Outlast and probably going through the Witcher if I don't lose the motivation. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline and Guillaume (sometimes) Lionel We are upgrading our foliage system and it means upgrading two things, the big and the small (or automatic) parts. The big part is the stuff the player will be interested in, like a ring of trees with a chest in the center. The small/automatic part is everything else: the grass, the bushes even the trees, all the vegetation that have no role in the game but would be missed if it wasn’t there (actually some bushes have a role gameplay wise but bear with me there). I am working on the big part. To make the patterns more easily defined and more diverse, I built a tool to visualize them and to allow real-time editing. You define a shape (circle or diamond for example), choose an object, the number of times it should appears, and add some perturbation to the placement and you can create some very natural looking patterns, which you can then edit in real time. In the capture below, you can see the basic shape in blue, the candidate positions in red and the preview for the final placements, that includes some pushing. Real time editing is very useful for procedural systems as it reduces the number of iterations to get what we want. In a word : nice. That brings me to the end of my part for this last 2017 weekly. I wish you a very happy Xmas. On my end, I will now start sleuthing to see who is my secret santa in the team. See you in 2018 for new procedural explorations and crazy contraptions.
  3. Hey everyone, It is finally the holidays and we are more than ready to take a break and recharge before 2018 kicks in! But no rest for the wicked just yet, we still have a lot of work to do before some the team heads off to visit their families. We wish you all a very happy holidays and may you work your way through your backlog! We asked each team member to write what game they were looking to play over the holidays and we would love to hear yours as well. We also released some print-outs of We Happy Few paper snowflakes to add a little extra Joy to your holiday decorating! Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Alex This week, Lisa and I gave a talk at MIGS on “Dirty Narrative” in We Happy Few. Dirty narrative is my term for making the game into a bit of an unreliable narrator. There will be inconsistencies. There will be absences. There will be mysteries. There will be translucent lies -- lies that tell you as much about the liar as they do about the truth. Characters will tell you things you need to know only tangentially -- they are not there to serve your story, they are the heroes of their own stories. Our theory is that pushing information at the player pushes you away; we only want to answer a question after you’ve asked it. That way, you pull yourself into the story and the world. You may judge for yourself whether we have been successful in this approach. I’m also writing dialog for the great effort to rework the first two hours of the game. Right now it’s all robo-speech, which is horrifying to listen to, but works for the designers. Probably after the holidays I’ll turn that into recorded temp speech in which I do all the voices, which gives us a more accurate sense of how the encounters play out. And then, once everything is nailed down, I’ll bring our actors back and turn it into recorded final dialog. Now that we’ve given our talk, things as home have returned to normal (or, normal for us, anyway), so I can get into Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds and Witcher 3: Blood and Wine. There is also a Crusader Kings 2 game that I’ve had on hiatus for months, and if I give in to temptation, I might re-install CK2 and disappear from reality for a week. Lisa Same as above, but over the holidays, I will be playing CUPHEAD! Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Cuddly Eric After a few weeks of restructuring some things, planning, schedules, meetings, chats, bug fixes, design schtuff, and whatever else I was up to I’m back making some new content. I’m making a new bridge that is supposed to be a bit of an event. Think it’ll be cool, and hopefully pretty weird. Adorable Adam I’ve been working on a new transition quest for Arthur’s story. It involves some new areas, and some areas that you may have come across in early access builds. Also, I made a bobby spawner that bobbies actually return to when their alarm is over. So, if you guys haven’t heard of this game, it’s effing scary. Terrific sound design, and some genuine “oh f*ck” moments: http://unforgivinggame.com/ Antoine Hey there good people ! So the level design area is getting a tiny bit invaded. I’ve got two new neighbors (Emmanuel and Marc André) that are both doing a pretty hardcore job of arting up the sections I’ve created for the very first Garden District island. We’ve gone through a lot of iterations on those, trying to route the player into interesting locations, accentuate certain things in the environment. Having them closer made the whole process a lot easier. Trying to make sure the world is creepy enough, I’ve tried to push a little the creation of more “Wastrel art” into our garden district islands. What’s interesting about them is that, they are trying their best to be normal again (words from Alex our narrative director). So that’s why when sometimes they set up tea parties with mannequins it’s just a way for them to do something normal but with the wacky side effect of a brain messed up by Joy (if some of our early access players remember the giant cat with a hat sitting at a table with a bunch of tea cups it’s definitely coming back with more stuff).
  4. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph and Franzi Mike P (Smarter than your average bear) Sup folks! Greetings from our secret underground lair… well not so much, but it’s nice to think it is. So this week was again a mixed bag. Worked on some more cinematics and some camera moves to enhance your playing experience. To give you the ooooh’s and aaaah’s! As usual I can’t show them to you, but believe me, 1 out of 2 animators here say they are passable So yay! That again, is about it from my end folks, so tune in again next week, same Bat Time, same Bat Channel! Jules Hi everybody! I've continued my work on combat this week again. Creating new animations for the death by the status effect of bleeding: This animation ends in rag doll, which means if a NPC dies by bleeding near a bench... there is a possibility that he/she will hit his head violently on it. I can also share you this new animation of when a NPC has their weapon destroyed: If I were you, I would start already training with the parry because it's going to be very useful during combat! See you next week for more news about combat! J.R. Hey guys, this week I tried to go back to narrative but ended up tuning and polishing combat animations all week! Most of all, I polished and exaggerated all of the “reaction” animations for NPCs in combat, meaning whenever they get hit or parried, the point of impact (head/body) is more obvious, and in general just so the animations would communicate better in the middle of a fight. So far I did this pass on 1-handed combat, and I will have to retarget those animations for all combat archetypes. Otherwise my week was split between new variations for dodge, polished some old taunt animations and did a little bit of tuning on the combat idle and other small non-combat related tasks. Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Lisa This week I alternated between writing environmental narrative for a new “introductory” island and freaking out about public speaking -- Alex and I are giving a talk at MIGS next week about narrative in We Happy Few. It’s actually been great to step back and look at the big picture of the game -- not only for our talk, but as part of the game polishing process. We’re seeing all sorts of patterns we hadn’t really come up with on purpose, but of course we’re going to pretend that we knew all along what we were doing! If you’re at MIGS next week, please say hi. Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Team Discuss this post here
  5. Hey everyone, The end of the year is upon us and things are getting festive around the office which really adds that extra sparkle to our development routine. Next week Alex and Lisa will be at MIGS (the Montreal International Game Summit) to give a talk on Making Wellington Wells Memorable, i.e. all the non-story narrative in the game. Feel free to come say hi if you are attending! Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Adam “pretty much lead level designer” Alim All of us are dog-piling on Arthur’s story playthrough this week. Eric and I have been leading the charge on scheduling and prioritizing his playthrough, and handing out assignments based on those priorities. So for now, The Mad Scotsman and Miss Thigh-Highs get a little rest. As for details to the changes we’re making: we had some playtests set up with several people playing certain parts of the story, and taking notes on where there are lulls or dips. As we thought, there were quite a few, so we’re reworking some areas and adding in a couple of new moments to better transition between moments. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH Marc-André For the first part of the week, I've been working on finishing the new ivy vines that are on the buildings in the garden district. I first started by modeling leaves and laying them out by hand on branches created with spline curves inside Autodesk Maya. Doing this by hand gives me a lot more control over the look than outsourcing photos. For foliage, we are leaning toward a cartoonish side. I baked/transferred those arrangements onto a 2D plane, creating what essentially is a sprite sheet. I had to generate a lot of textures to get nice quality and control over the final artistic result, which I achieved in Photoshop. Since we will be placing a lot of them and want a high density of leaves, it was crucial that I kept the polygon count as low as possible (in this case, between 240 and 500 verts). I laid out the sprites on low-poly cards inside Maya to create the 3D arrangements. I imported these and the textures in Unreal and created a new material with all of the features. Relying heavily on vertex painting and masks, I implemented the following features: -Choice between procedural/vertex painting of color variation -Ability to vertex paint branches that are dead, to quickly create variety -Transition of colors from green/red to purple when player is on Joy -Dead branches during Joy overdose/withdrawal -Wind & Subsurface Here is an example of vertex painting of the vines in action. It is very easy to change the color and density of the vines directly inside Unreal in the game's levels. For the second part of the week, I’ve been helping Eric on the blocking of an exciting new bridge. PH With the new vines from Marc-André, I was able to give an art pass on the garden district buildings. It’s already better and we are quite happy with the organic feeling that we are able to achieve. We’ve finally got this overgrown nature that we were looking for. So we will soon enter the 2nd art pass on the garden district and we will try to polish everything with little details and more colors. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline and Guillaume (sometimes) Lionel A lot of small things this week. Beside the panic-ridden “oh, WTF is the worldgen system doing?” moments (followed by “oh, people are giving it really bad data”), I mostly worked on the road intersection and the foliage/patterns systems. The first one is simply slowly getting to where we want. The second is a reuse of an experiment we did a few months ago. It seems to be working but it is a bit early to be final on this. No screenshots this week. Michael This week we had a meeting to review combat. We want to decide soon whether there are still features missing, or whether we have what we need at this stage, and we can move on to just bug fixing and tweaking values to deliver something that we’re happy with. So people from Level Design, QA, Animation, myself and Guillaume sat in a room and got into some fights, in game. It’s quite good to watch other people play and to have these discussions as a group because it highlights things you wouldn’t notice, or wouldn’t consider from your own playstyle. Also if you’ve been working on aspects of the system, you can get into a playstyle to test what you’re working on. I’d been working on blocking and parrying, and NPC reactions. My style is either quite static, or moving towards the NPCs. So watching Lee play and be constantly moving and backing away from enemies was a good reminder. The meeting generated a lot of tasks to work on, but I think we have a lot of the systems already in place. To avoid the impression that we have shallow or repetitive combat we just need to be better at highlighting these systems/tactics to players and showing the depth that is in there (like parrying, stuns, throwables in combat), and then improving the feel of them and how they can be used together. So no new features, but some good feedback and direction to keep improving what we have.
  6. Michael Recently I’ve been going through all the NPC reactions for the naughty things you can do that make them mad, like climbing, stealing their stuff, murder etc. The goal is to make sure it is clear exactly what triggered their reaction, and what you can do to avoid being punished. The reactions consist of 3 elements, the NPC animation, their VO and then feedback through the HUD and status menu. It’s a lot of stuff to test, so my first step was create a level where I can easily spawn each type of NPC and switch outfits and weapons with a few button presses, and fill it with stuff like cupboards to steal from and locks to pick. Then I just have to press a button and check how each character reacts to a guy in a boiler suit and gasmask trying to jimmy bar a window. Are they angry enough? What if I start shoving them? Am I dead yet? ...success! Lionel There are things that make a city (or a hamlet) more believable. Among them is the structure of the road layout. It implies the flow of people over time, some kind of history. So this week, I focused on how to improve the diversity of our roads. The problem is not the roads themselves but when they meet. The crossroads are transition areas that are complex : they are the meeting points for different visual styles and different road width. I am not done but I already worked out the final model for crossroads the game will use. I implemented in a small prototype to see what it would be once on the screen. I made a mockup for our artists to validate (warning programmer art) : And now I am integrating it into the game. “What strange phenomena we find in a great city, all we need do is stroll about with our eyes open. Life swarms with innocent monsters.” Baudelaire, Best City Bro. Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Mike M, and Elliot (and more) Elliot Hey there! I’m Elliot, Gearbox Publishing’s Publishing Producer. What exactly does that (rather redundant) title mean? A number of things! I put together production schedules that incorporate timelines from Marketing, User Research, and Certification from Publishing, plus Compulsion’s development timeline. I coordinate with outsourced localization teams to get the game’s in-menu text and subtitles translated. I also put together the submission materials we send off to the ratings boards, which is what takes up most of my time at this point in development. Each ratings board has different requirements for the submitted materials, and different turnaround times. For example, ESRB’s turnaround time is 5-7 business days, so we can submit to them a little later- but turnaround time for DJCTQ (Brazil) is 30 days, so we submitted We Happy Few to them a few weeks ago and are waiting to receive our rating certification. Many boards require a gameplay video that shows pertinent content – violence, language, and sexual themes, among others – so we’re tasked with finding and recording the “worst” or strongest instances of these that are present in the game, and editing them together for submission to the boards. Kind of a highlight reel of things that might affect the rating of the game. For We Happy Few, we’re expecting to receive 16-18+ ratings with content descriptors calling out the dark themes, violence, sexual references, strong language, and drug (Joy) use. Some boards require a playable build of the game, and a few require a supercut of all the in-game cinematics (I’m looking at you, PEGI!). A few boards have special requirements. CERO (Japan) requires all communications and submission materials to be in Japanese, so we work with a third party (in this case, Neilo) for translation and guidance. IMDA (Singapore) and GCRB/GRAC (South Korea) do not allow extranational applications, so we secure local representation in order to be rated there. It can sound pretty dry on paper, but I enjoy it - both the work itself, and being part of the process of helping Compulsion get their awesome game out there where people can play it! Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Team
  7. Hi everyone, Breezy update this week. This weekend we will be at MEGA in Montreal. We will even have a photoshoot with some Uncle Jack props, so if you are around, come by and say, “Lovely day for it!” Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph And Franzi Jules Hi everybody! So this week I’ve worked on the Doctor’s bonesaw attack. I added the VFX and tweaked the animation for it a little bit to look better in-game. During the other part of the week, I’ve started to work on my new task, a new taunt and a death reaction. We want to add some custom animation for NPC’s death. At the moment it’s just a hit reaction with a ragdoll notify inside of the animation sequence. So basically more variant in combat for it to look better. I will share with you some gifs next week. Mike So this week I worked hard to deliver a cutscene that .. well won’t be used anymore. At least not for its intended purpose. Then I moved onto polishing up some animations I had to rush a few weeks ago, and then I finished a first person animation of talking on a Walkie Talkie. So this week has been a bit of a mixed bag, but fun nonetheless! See you next week, same Bat Time same Bat Channel! Vincent Ahoy, long time no see! I’ll just peek my head behind the curtains to confess that this week I took some off time to tweak and polish a bit the Mad Scotsman intro, a cinematic I worked on almost two years ago… daaammn, time flies. The game has changed so much since those days. The team and the office as well! Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary And PH Carylitz A lot of sculpting work lately! I have to create a new character variant which is really challenging, but a really fun process. I have also been doing the last touch ups to some maps so we can finish them for real, really small details like fixing lights intensity, arrangement of portraits and moving some props around. I worked in some ninja tasks assigned by Antonio, most of this work is just going back to props and separate them or add pieces. Marc-André and PH We are currently refactoring every single buildings of the Garden District (the procedural fillers as well as the encounters) by adding custom pieces of land. So far so good; we are quite happy with the results we have achieved so far. What this means is that the transitions between the plots are getting a lot smoother. Using vegetation also helps us blend everything together in an organic fashion. Instead of the rigid set of buildings we had, the new plots have a bit more chaos (broken stone walls, plants growing here and there, height variation) which makes the world feel, visually, less procedural. By blending custom-made plots and the procedural world generation, we’re getting closer to a hybrid every day. QA Team - Lee, Stephanie, JP and Alexina Jean-Philippe Rarely ever any interesting news coming from QA. This week has been spent largely regressing fixed issues and disseminating data from other QA testers and playtesters. With this kind of data, we can see potential issues, such as too much time in between two quests, unusually long quests, and it can also tell us roughly how much time it takes to complete our content. Alexina Hey everyone, I started here back in September but haven’t had much to say. There’s nothing beyond the usual (testing, regressing, test plan creating - you know, the usual) going on in the QA world of Compulsion. We had a playtest this week that Lee oversaw, besides that, “nose to the grindstone” as Arthur says (except we’re actually doing so, and not off our Joy). Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil And Guillaume (Sometimes) Maarten Hi all! We have been hard at work getting the PS4 build up to par. While Unreal is pretty good at supporting console platforms, it leaves enough things for us to figure out. Those can be simple, like "How do I properly set up our savegames so they play nice with PS4's dashboard?"; less simple: "Where are those damn GPU faults coming from?"; or downright odd: "Why do our houses look like they're auditioning for a Tim Burton movie?"
  8. Publishing Team – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Michael Hello All, I’m Michael, Gearbox Publishing’s Submission Specialist, and I’d like to share a little bit of information on something I worked on this week for We Happy Few. As the Submission Specialist, I work with the Publishing Producers, Developers, Marketing, and Functional and Certification QA groups to gather information and materials that are required by first parties (such as Microsoft and Sony) to publish a game on their respective platforms. After these groups plan and carry out their tasks, I take the finished materials and bring them to the first parties for approval and ultimate publication. Titles that are published through Microsoft and Sony go through a Certification process (which is the last step before a game goes “Gold”), which helps ensure the games are stable and meet performance requirements and work with system-level features without issue. There’s also a “Pre-Certification” process that is provided by both Microsoft and Sony to help the developers understand where their product stands and what items need to be fixed before the title enters the final Certification process. This week I’ve been working with Microsoft to address a unique situation that we ran into when planning for the Pre-Certification process. We Happy Few is currently part of the Game Preview program and the Game Preview build is already live on the Xbox Marketplace. This means, in Microsoft’s systems, I can see the product and all its parts and pieces-- but what happens when I need to change something or add something new? For Example, we will be submitting a new build (of the final release game) to Microsoft; however, the location we would normally submit the build to (for Certification) is already occupied by the Game Preview build. Which leads me to my task for the week—How do we get this build to Microsoft for Pre-Certification without that original upload location. Part of why this is so important is that we don’t want to risk uploading a build that is not final to the original location and have it accidentally published to the public. We also want to leave that original location untouched in case there is a need to patch the Game Preview version before the game official launches. Ultimately, working with our Producers, Sam at Compulsion, and Microsoft, we successfully found an alternative that provides a solution that works for everyone. We made a new upload location! While it sounds easy on paper, there’s some work that goes into getting this setup, with the communication and planning between our internal groups and with Microsoft. But we have amazing people at Microsoft who are very responsive and creative, as well as those at Compulsion Games which have the patience to help us work through these kinks. Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Games
  9. Hey everyone, Winter has finally arrived in Montreal. It’s cold and night falls at 4:30pm but the party doesn’t have to stop! It never starts, that’s the real secret. We just hibernate. We will be attending a convention here in Montreal called MEGA, so if you are in the area, come say hi to us! We’re really just here to meet you guys, so we’ll have a few consoles showing Life in Technicolour, and we’ll be showcasing alongside our friends from Red Barrels (creators of Outlast). Production wise, this week has been all about subtitles in preparation for localization, more rating submissions and reviews of all the playthroughs. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil And Guillaume (Sometimes) Lionel This week (and the week before actually), I worked on offering a bit of closure to the hamlet and Village in the game. One common reproach from our beloved artists was that those had an abrupt outline: it was either nothing and then the wilderness or buildings and then the wilderness. They were obviously right, so I took my robe and wizard hat and looked to see if we could do something about that. I had a bit of luck, and adapting for the outlines the current system of generic buildings was quite easy. The impacts it had on other parts of the world generation system was not. After a lot of coffee, head scratching and scribbling on paper and in code, the new placement system is there. Narrative Team - Alex And Lisa Lisa This week I feel like the Easter Bunny! I finished the first draft of the time capsule book HOW TO BE HAPPY, and it is chock-full of Easter eggs. I even read through the text one last time, just to see if everything would make sense to someone who hadn’t played the game yet. Hopefully the text works on two levels, for both newbies and longtime Downers. We’re also still dealing with odds-n-ends that came up after content lock. For instance, every type-o I made in the past year in a lore document is getting pinged by the QA folks, but fortunately it’s only a handful at this point (thank you, Spell Check!) But it looks as if I’ll have more time to play the game now (and cross your fingers that I don’t find other things I need to fix!). Alex This week I’ve been mostly reviewing the game. I’ve been playing as Arthur. Anyone who’s wondering if there will be enough game, well, I’ve logged about 550 hours in the game, I know how the game works, and it’s still taking me the better part of the week to play through Arthur. That’s not blockers, although there are some places where progression is blocked; that’s stuff to do and places to go and weirdos to talk to and things to find out. Probably the most fun part was when an elaborate, phantasmagorical encounter we’ve been working on for three years came to full fruition. It was hilarious. And weird. And yet, I think, at some level true. “It never happened; yet it is still true. What magic art is this?” says the Puck in Sandman 34, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” That’s the writing I aspire to. We also spent a good bit of the week rejiggering the opening island, so that when the player comes out of the shelter for the first time, he is “onboarded” through a curated experience. Some new players were getting lost when they hit the open world – what do I do? how do I play? where am I supposed to go – and we’re hoping to fix that. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph And Franzi Jules Hi everyone! This week I've worked on the Doctor and his powerful bone saw! The gif I am sharing with you is the new doctor light attack. I've also made a new custom hit reaction for the player. Apart from that I've spent my week tweaking the navigation of the doctor, his idle animation with the bone saw and a lot of other small animations. Just Mike, and the rest of the animation team Sup! Been working hard to try and blow your socks off with some cinematic/cutscene love! Unfortunately I can’t show you anything or talk about it… so yeah. But I’m confident y’all are going to like it! Sorry not much other than that to report this week. So tune in next week, same Bat Time, Same Bat channel! Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary And PH PH I finished a really cool weapon that the Doctor will use in combat to resurrect people and I can’t wait to see it in action. I will put my props time period on hold for a moment because I really have to help Marc refine the art side of the procedural system. We are really optimistic on this but it’s going to take several weeks. In the meantime, here’s a little picture of the Resurrector:
  10. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary And PH PH I continued my props series and this week, I’ve made some dynamite! I had the chance to work on a legendary item that I can’t wait for players to discover. And I also worked closely with the animators to provide them some small props. Pretty fun week for me! Marc-André Voyer This week I have been doing a lot of organisation and testing for the following weeks. Two other artists and I are going to be refactoring all of the Garden District terrains that are connected to roads, to better account for height variation and to add gardens and stone walls that will give it much more the feeling of being a real place. I created a spreadsheet with the list of every level that spawns and delimited which ones will require the refactoring - and eyeballed the worst-looking encounters - so we give these more love. I also created multiple roughed up versions of the plots to test various elements such as the transitions between the terrain and the sidewalk and see if we can get some height variation in these while avoiding the pitfall of adding extra steps. Emmanuel This week I continued the village refactor while also doing a major lighting pass by disabling auto exposure to get more control over every lighting scenario and specially reduce the skylight intensity to get less inside buildings. The contrast are much better balance and we’re really getting toward the final look for the game! Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, And Erick (And More) Hey everyone! I’m Austin, Gearbox Publishing’s PR Manager. This week has been a particularly fun week in PR, as I’ve been doing some story brainstorming! During a game’s marketing campaign, there are a lot of major moments (announcement, gameplay trailer, story trailer, launch, etc.), but it’s beneficial to keep the conversation going between those moments; that’s where feature stories come in. By feature stories, I mean fun and in-depth looks at specific features in the game that different media outlets would be interested in covering. We teamed up with PR agency Evolve to get some ideas down on paper. Some of the ones we’re excited to take further are: Overview of improvements and changes made from community impact Art direction for a procedurally generated world (Whitney did a talk on this earlier this year at GDC!) A deep dive into Uncle Jack – inspirations, direction, actor interview An in-depth look on the music of the game (can’t say too much more yet about this one but it’s exciting!) Ultimately, our goal is to come up with features that will pique the interest and curiosity of you, the We Happy Few community! Feel free to let us know what in-depth features interest you! Thanks y’all! Compulsion Games
  11. Hey everyone, We can’t believe we’re already in November! Wait, who are we kidding?! It’s Montreal, and already freezing cold, so we have plenty of reminders of where we are in the season! Before we know it, it will be Spring, and--after 4 years of hard work--we’ll be presenting our game to the world. This is both scary and exciting! We received a lot of pictures from your We Happy Few Halloween costumes and thought they were all wonderful. Thank you for taking the time to make, wear, and share them! It warmed our twisted little hearts. Production Sam After lots of hard work from the team, we're pretty much where we wanted to be with "content complete!". For us, this doesn't mean that content is done - it's not - but it does mean that we have every quest in the game, with its objectives, journals and VO. That's an exciting milestone, because we can now review the entire game, and entire story, to make sure that it works. That work begins next week, along with localization, more finaling, responding to UX tests, bug fixing, and all the final tasks that we have on the project. The team has worked really hard to get here, and it's really shaping up to be a lot of fun. Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne And Benji Adam Holy Hell has this been a productive week. I’ve been working with Cary and Remi to blow stuff up. Big stuff. BIG boom... And you’re going to love it when you see it. That aside, as most of you know, I’m in charge of the Mad Scotsman in its entirety. I finished up plugging in all the dialogue last week, and this week I’ve been focusing on realization (making shit believable), and blockers (bugs which halt your progression). I have to say, I’m super proud of the Mad Scotsman’s playthrough… and I also find myself adopting a scottish accent from time to time. Gonnae git back tae it, ya weapons! Roxanne Lots of dialogue integration on my side this week. I also found some time to add five new “non-lethal” weapons, for those of you that want to avoid unnecessary deaths. Eric Well, Alex wrote a mountain of dialogue for Arthur, and we got most of it into the build this week. Thanks to Hayden, Benji, Ben, and Roxanne for helping me put in something like a thousand different Arthur lines across 30+ quests. Take that Alex! Narrative Team - Alex And Lisa Lisa I’m...done? We’ve locked content for 1.0, so mostly what I’m doing for the game now is just dealing with missing bits and bobs, and making suggestions for polish. Happily, I am also writing the How To Be Happy book that will be in the time capsule, so I still get to live in the joyful world of Wellington Wells a while longer! Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph And Franzi Jules Hey, everybody! So this week I've worked mostly on the doctor! Especially on his resurrect and healing ability. And also I've made a new hit reaction for the player when he carries the bone saw. Somewhat Dangerous Mike Hey guys! So this week I worked on some more cutscenes like last week for something again I can’t tell you about. But I REALLY REALLY want to though! Cause it’s great! But alas I can’t. Guess you’ll just have to play the game to find out. I’m on to something far more exciting now though. I know I know, you’re saying to yourself: “Self, this seems impossible, with all the awesome.” And you’d be right. But really though it’s not impossible! At least not for me. It’s super exciting. But again it’s all hush hush. So that’s it for me this week, so tune in next week, same Bat time, same Bat channel! TL;DR: Super Awesome & Hush hush. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil And Guillaume (Sometimes) Céline I’ve been working on the skills and skill menu with Evan, and we have a first working version! The team is also looking for the best skills that will improve and level the game experience. Additionally, they will be used to highlight some unclear gameplay features which are already implemented. It is progressing quite well and I hope you guys will like that new addition. Michael This week I’ve been taking a look at the conformity system to see how we can make sure the reasons for suspicion and detection are clear when we’re playing. I haven’t actually done a lot of work on it yet, it’s a big system and I need to get an understanding of how it all works before I start digging in and making changes. Thankfully, Serge has been patiently passing on his wisdom and teaching me the way the AI think. I have made one change, which is to add some new icons to the HUD to better explain how you are perceived in game. Previously Suspicion was represented by the colour-changing eye and the notification that tells you when you’re suspicious, but we felt this was inelegant and still not giving enough information, so we’re trying out having 3 icons below the compass which reflect whether you can be seen, heard, and whether what you are doing is suspicious. The advantage is they also help at this stage to debug what is and isn’t working the way we expect, so we can flag bugs to fix later, for example if you were sprinting down the street and the noise meter says you are silent, we’ll need to check why.
  12. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph and Franzi Slightly less dangerous Mike Hey folks! So this week was cutscenes,cutscenes, cutscenes!!! Was working on them like they were going out of style! These little snippets are there to make you laugh, cringe and add to the flavour of the world we are making for you. This week I worked on one of our characters that I can’t mention, buuut… so if you’ve ever seen a circus act where a guy’s shot out of a cannon.. Well it’s pretty much like that. Except there are no soft landings in store. And I started working on a shot heavily laden with some wink, wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean, know what I mean type stuff going on. (For you Monty Python fans out there) Except in this situation it’s probably not as exciting as you might think it is. Plot twist! So that’s pretty much it from me this week! Tune in again next week, same Bat Time, same Bat Channel! Jules Hi everybody ! So this week, I worked on combat animation! I've made some new attack for the bayonet weapon. I’m sharing you the new heavy attack of this weapon. At the middle of the week, I worked on the Doctor! As some of you find, the only NPC who can carry the powerful bonesaw is the Doctor! So the doctor can heal other NPC during a fight, he can resurrect them and heal himself. Yes, he can do a lot of things and reverse the situation during the fight! So during the last part of the week, I've also made some Heal and resurrect animation for the NPC and the doctor. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH Whitney Hey folks, It's been a while! The last couple weeks have been a whirlwind. We've been developing the parade district and figuring out what we can do to improve the look of the procedural world on the art side. I've also designed a new version of The Plough Boy (concept soon to come), and the nighttime gas mask for The Doctor, inspired by a medieval plague doctor. Somewhere in there I got the plague myself and had to take a couple of days off, but that's over and I'm back to organizing, prioritizing, reviewing environmental narratives, and concepting:) Speaking of which another thing I've been up to is figuring out ALL remaining art tasks to be done and ALL art related bugs to prioritize, and the underlying conclusion is it's not going to be too terrible! Yay! PH I had the chance to made a really cool plague doctor gas mask based on Whitney’s concept, our Art Director. So I gathered some old leather and vintage gas mask references and I started to sculpt the general shape. The challenge was to give some personality to the mask. Looking at the concept, you can see the frowning eyebrow, the aggressive shape and how everything fits very well with the Doctor’s face. So my main goal was to give strong attention to this. Texturing was a critical process and I spent hours refining the overall leather look. I’m quite happy with the final result. Then I moved on to weapons. I was in charge of creating a set of variation that the player will be able to craft to get a specific weapon ability. Marc-André, Guillaume, Cary This week, we’ve kept working away on level art for the new wonderfully handcrafted biome that is the Parade District. After completing the mid-level blockout of the areas (polishing the layout of the streets, the buildings and creating the rough shape of the terrain), we have been placing all of the decorators such as leaves, vines, puddles and signs on the buildings. We’ve also been placing streetlights to set the ambiance. Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Jon, Michelle, and Kyle Hail, and well-met! We are the Gearbox Publishing User Research Team. Our jobs involve conducting user tests and analyzing data from players for nearly every project at both Gearbox Publishing and Gearbox Software. We work primarily out of our User Research Facility, a dedicated testing lab in Frisco, TX. We recruit participants from the Dallas/Fort Worth area to come to our labs and playtest content for us. Prior to moving over to Gearbox Publishing, the team operated under Gearbox Software since 2008. This month the team has been focused on a large multiday user test for We Happy Few; this is the kind of test where our participants come back to the lab for a second day of content and feedback, and we can really focus in on critical areas for analysis. While we can’t divulge the details of the test or the data we collected, we can say that the test itself went very well. Our partners at Compulsion and our Publishing QA groups were fantastic allies throughout the preparation and execution of the test, and all parties were pleased with the report that was delivered. We are looking forward to the next round of testing, and we will be planning that out in the next couple of weeks. Until next time! Compulsion Games
  13. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes) Michael A bit more combat and a bit more stealth this week. The content complete deadline looms and it’s starting to feel more panicked. The goal for content complete is to have a representative version of the game ready to fix and polish. So any features we want in the game should be in before this deadline, and for me it feels like packing for a holiday the night before; chucking things into the suitcase and hoping you haven’t missed something you really need. Also, with the end in sight you start to be even more judgemental of the game you’re making, and see all the things you want to improve, so it’s a vicious cycle. Fortunately, I’m also still seeing new bits of the game that really impress me, and we’ve still got many months to polish up the work that has been done, and to keep improving and improving the features we’ve got to make the moment to moment gameplay as brilliant as possible. Lionel The world generation impacts two different aspects of the game, the gameplay and the visual. On the first hand, the length of the roads or the distance between “interesting places” are directly connected to the way the world generates. On the other hand, the suspension of disbelief depends (among other things) on the coherence of the world generated. I worked the last week on the first aspect (gameplay) and while there is still room for improvement (there always is), I worked this week on adding subtle (or not so subtle) visual stuff to the hamlets and villages. Things that you would miss if they weren’t there but that makes the world more natural. Neil In the past few weeks I have been working on implementing very different things that Miss Thigh Highs and the Mad Scotsman need to take care of over the duration of the game. Both of these features rely heavily on the flow of time (coincidentally like the looming content complete deadline)! Much like my previous task, this has helped me learn more about the many different systems that are in play in our game. It’s been an incredible adventure to content complete, and I hope this translates into an experience you’ll all enjoy. Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Lisa When you play 1.0, each character will have audio flashbacks that let you hear moments in their past that defined them. That’s what I’ve been writing for Miss Thigh Highs this week (in addition to writing the last bits and bobs of environmental narrative). It’s going to be very hard for me to say goodbye to Miss Thigh Highs when we lock content next week. I’ve poured a lot of my own experiences into her character (though of course I never lived in a 60s dystopia where A Very Bad Thing happened). I hope you’ll love her as much as I do! In Halloween-related fun, Naila asked me to write a Foggy Jack poem for our Twitter last week. This one that didn’t quite make the cut (we went with a limerick instead), but perhaps it could still serve as a useful warning for all you Downers... The Ballad of Foggy Jack On Halloween Eve, in Wellington Wells, The church bells knell, and yet all is not well. When all good Wellies should be in their bed, Comes a nameless fear and a leaden dread -- If you’re out past curfew, you’ll end up dead! For out on the heath, under night’s velvet sheath, Whistling cuts through the mists like a scythe! Do hurry back home if you value your life, Or the last thing you’ll see is the gleam of his knife! You may have noticed there’s actually a bunch of verse in the game -- we have bawdy army songs, a Rupert Brooks-style soldier poet, pop-star lyrics, and even a couple of modernist diary-entry poems. It’s fun to have a job that lets me write in lots of different literary styles -- from cheeky magazine articles to faux-Shakespearean witches’ dialog. This week I even got to write a riddle in rhyme. I’m trying to squeeze in as much as I can in the last week before content lock! Alex When Lisa and I were taking Kenneth Koch’s writing class at Columbia a long time ago, we learned two things: (a) develop a writing style by writing in other people’s styles (b) you will never run out of words. Writing a game is a master class; I’ve got to write in different voices and different media. Originally we were just going to have audio flashbacks for Arthur, because Arthur’s main issue is someone who never comes on stage in the present, while Miss Thigh High’s issue is clear and present, and the Mad Scotsman has a special friend to talk to. But Sam asked for audio flashbacks for them, too, so I wrote the Mad Scotsman’s memories this week. They’ll have to go into the game in robospeech or temp voice or something, as the fellow who voices the Mad Scotsmen disappears Monday to the wilds of Alberta till just before Christmas; apparently where he is, there are not high quality sound studios. (Everyone now carries a pretty decent microphone in their pocket; but you still need a professional quality sound studio to get clean audio without a “boxy,” “roomy” quality of reverb.) Other work: figuring out how to bring the player up to speed on the Garden District faster; writing clever journal entries and objectives in the game’s voice for about half the game; and editing Arthur’s nightmares. Oh, he will have nightmares. He was going to have cinematic nightmares, but with our animators working their fingers to the bone and Clara frantically editing Uncle Jack, now it’s audio nightmares. I actually love editing audio. Lisa and I are giving a talk at MIGS this December on the various forms of narrative we’ve put in the game. Back in the day, if you’d proposed to tell stories via randomly collected letters, signs, graffiti, and gin bottle labels, in an artificial environment, they’d have given you a degree for experimental writing. Now it’s not so experimental, but it continues to be strange fun.
  14. Hey everyone, We hope you are having a good end of October. There are a lot of cool games coming out, shows to watch and Halloween is right around the corner. If you are dressing up as anyone from We Happy Few, send us some pictures! This week we’ve been posting some fun stuff on our social media such as some pumpkin stencils and a little bedtime story by Uncle Jack. We also posted a tutorial on how to make your very own Bobby mask thanks to the amazingly talented cosplayer DeAnna Davis. Production Sam Reviews continue this week as we look more closely at player progression, world setup (the procedural generation) and balance. Looking at the user research reports from Gearbox (who have added a piece below explaining who they are and what they do), one of the pieces of feedback that matched community feedback was that many people were taking a while to get to the Village and start taking Joy. As you guys know, these are critical parts of the game world, and many early reports from players have been “I don’t get it, is this just a survival game?” because they never got to the more colourful parts of the world: These reports are cool because they’re independent - they’re similar in a way to the feedback all of you have given us over the past few years, but are focused on the story playthroughs. These aren’t editorial suggestions, they’re (as much as possible) objective evaluations based on player feedback. They’re a way to help us gain perspective, because it can be very easy to get tunnel vision during development. With this specific issue, we have a range of solutions. One thing that has become apparent the past two months is that we have huge power with the procedural generation to make big changes very quickly. One option to solve the problem above is to use the generation system to change the layout of the world, introducing these areas earlier. While the generation system has caused issues for our art and level design teams in the past, it is much easier for us to make changes like this than it would be for a traditionally built game. We’re really starting to see the benefits of it at this stage. For most of the team, content work continues well, and we are able to finalise our ratings submissions. Brazil has been submitted (it is the region with the longest analysis time), and we’re now beginning work on Japan and Malaysia! We do have a couple of last minute cinematics coming in today (including one highly suggestive and comical scene), but as of today that means we have now built the raunchiest, goriest, most full-of-expletive, parts of the game. It’s very fun to review! One more week until “content complete”. Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Adam Over 1000 lines needed to be plugged in for the mad scotsman… and that is now finished… hooray! After that, animators go through all the conversations and put together idles/animation chains for conversations. This is a double-edged sword because it opens up the floodgates for a bugs and problems, but it’s an important part in helping give life to the dialogue and story. Bugs and problems are pretty much daily life during development. If we have a bug with animation, we’ll need to either fix it through script, or ask for a better tool from programmers. Both solutions can potentially break with subsequent changes, although script fixes are more volatile. For example, in the Technicolour update we remade our AI systems. That system continues to be iterated on, but that can cause problems and break encounters that worked correctly beforehand (eg if we add a new conformity rule, our quest NPCs may not know that they’re supposed to ignore that rule until we fix it). Early Access was fun for that, because each update meant we’d need to fix encounters that were working previously! Good times. That being said, we’re almost at the point where major systems stop getting significant changes, so we are looking forward to doing the final “finaling” pass and making things run super well. In the meantime, *opens beer bottle*. Eric Integrated VO mostly. Had to fix bugs to be able to do this, so it was a twofer this week. Roxanne This week I worked on the new loot system and populating our loot lists. I also made some burning status effects for people stepping in campfires. Tons of VO integration otherwise.
  15. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH PH Rock’n Props for another week. I’m still trying to help everybody here with the last minute props before content complete. Unfortunately, this week I can’t really show them to you folks. A lot of them are too much related to the story. However, here’s a little walky talky I made: Carylitz Hi people! This week it was all about the Parade District, and trying to make it look as pretty as we can, so Marc, Guillaume and I are working on the island, each of us have a section assigned and our work is to decorate with props, lights and give it the feel of a real place. Sarah Another day, another sign. Hey lil' babies! We're busy busy busy filling all the environmental narrative gaps, and that means lots of signs in the Parade District, where all the trendy Wellies go to get their fab goods, you know. Marc-Andre's going to plug these doers in, and make them look amazing (as he so often does). Can't wait for you guys to see the Parade for yourselves!!! Emmanuel The Village is undergoing major changes! After two years of creating story encounters and FX, I’m finally back on WorldGen!! Things are moving fast and some big decisions have been made in term of gameplay and final look of the procedural generation; we’ll have more control over it and will be able to predict how levels spawn, therefore being able to effectively art them up and place them into the world, no more gaps! The idea is also to compact the world and being able to predict and control the series of events the player will be facing. All of this is extremely exciting and signifies the final steps for bringing a powerful and coherent experience at anytime and anywhere in the world of We Happy Few! Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes) Lionel Ah, procedural generation, the realm of wonders and nightmares, of immense or tiny creations, some hard as diamond and other so brittle, they collapse under their own weight. Visiting this strange place, the careful traveler consider his path and his spells carefully as a simple variation can make a huge difference; there, the letter of difference between castle and cattle has immediate consequences. This week has been one of careful tuning and delicate changes, but those will make the city more hospitable, and more amenable to new inhabitants - a tighter, more compact Village. It was a cold place that looked at who wanted to move there with a reproachful stare. So we nudged its spirit toward a more tolerant perspective. Serge I have spent the week working on the Doctor, which can now revive someone that you killed during combat. Plus an effort on his signature weapon, the bone saw, has been done with Jules. His unique ability to smell someone that is not on joy allows him to chase you more efficiently than any other archetype (so take your drugs when you see him). We also continue to iterate on conformity rules to increase the pressure on the player while ensuring that the whole experience stays fun. Michael Getting creepy as we approach Halloween, as I am working on stealth! Specifically this week I have been doing little bits and pieces to get distraction objects working. We want the AI to be so addicted to the sound of smashing and crashing that you can lead them wherever you want with enough empty bottles and rocks. Before this week the citizens of Wellington Wells were really uninterested in using their ears, but with a few tweaks they are getting better. Hopefully we will continue to improve this, and other stealth gameplay, up until launch, because personally I prefer having the sneakier, less lethal approach to our encounters. After all, they were once your neighbours. Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Kat Hey guys! My name’s Kat. I’m a recent East coast transplant to the Dallas area, and one the newest members of the Gearbox team. As the Publishing Project Manager, my days are spent working on thrilling things like Gantt charts, schedules, emails and spreadsheets (which I love)--basically making sure everyone has the most information possible to make awesome stuff! I’ve been working hard on the production of the Time Capsule (what we used to call the Collector’s Box), and currently have a prototype of the mask replica sitting on my desk! Caffeinated lifeblood in a can for scale: I also helped with a motion capture shoot for an upcoming trailer with Alex yesterday, which was awesome to see. I’ve never been part of something like that before and I learned a lot! I look forward to being able to share more with all of you in the future! Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Games
  16. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph and Franzi Mike P (Still a danger) Did stuff. Animated more stuff… All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy…All work and no play makes Mike a dull boy… (Don’t worry Naila.. I’ll add something)… So yeah, it’s been an interesting week. Been working on a cutscene that falls in a bit of a moral grey zone that hits a little close to home for me. But I got through it and I think what I came up with works. As per usual can’t tell you about it but rest assured I gave it my best college try and I hope when you see it you’ll feel a bit of emotion. So that’s it for me, tune in next week, same bat time, same bat channel! Jules Hi folks! So last week I talked you about our new weapon on the game, the bone saw! I can now share with you some gifs of my animation (this is a work in progress). As you can see with this weapon, you will be able to realize real carnage in a short amount of time! But when you equip it, you are restricted to only walking. This weapon is too heavy for you, so you can't run. It's the same for blocking the attack of your enemy. So you are not strong enough to do that, but maybe another person can... yes some other NPCs can carry the bone saw. And this transforms them into powerful opponents. Do you have you an idea who? Remi Hello people! This week, I was still on cinematic animations. Progressed quite well and did lots of back and forth with the rest of the team for a complicated scene. And when I say the rest of the team, I mean the WHOLE rest of the team. I got some feedback from programmers, artists, concept artists, writers and other animators. I find it quite important that you ask everyone for feedback. Everybody has a different background and knowledge that can apply to your animations. They might not be able to tell you that your animation lacks weight or why it needs more anticipation, but in the conceptual phase, anyone can tell you how they feel about the scene. Everyone has already played a game or seen a movie. If a non-animator notices there’s something off, maybe it’s worth listening to him . Sadly, we were not able to fly to Texas with Alex for the Mocap session, but still managed to be in a conference call and watch them from Montreal. They did an amazing job and Alex was great to direct the actors. The only times we had to communicate is for the initial setup of the scene. Where the characters should be at the beginning/ending of the scene and providing them with the right dimensions of the environment. I can’t wait to get my hands on this data and start playing with it! Vincent Ahoy lads and lasses, the rest of the animation team is not quite dead, despite what you would think, reading the previous updates. We’re still hard at work on the cinematics, as well as all the little scripted moments that can’t be done with simple conversation animations. Tackling those smaller events is a nice change of pace, especially when you’ve been animating 4000 frames long scenes (Alex quite likes to write, in case you haven’t noticed yet!). We also welcomed yet another new animator to help us in the final stretch, Franziska. She’s gonna give us a hand on the conversation animations, along with Raph who just arrived a few weeks ago. That makes eight of us, and we all have quite ‘du pain sur la planche’ (did I mention Alex writes a lot?). J.R. Greetings! Aside from integrating several scenes into the game before content complete, I spent the week on the end of the game… yes, you read that right! WHF actually gets a complete story with a beginning and an end. Who would have thought. And let me tell you, it’s short, sweet and totally satisfying. It’s also a technique we haven’t used a whole lot of in the past. Our cinematics are all in first person, but at some point in the game we make a cool transition into a new point of view. I don’t want to tell you more, because we think the whole thing is a very nice moment in the game and I wouldn’t want to spoil it. After all that, I’m very happy with the story, where it got to and where it’s getting. In the end, it truly is a lovely day for it!
  17. Hey everyone, Lots to share this week even though the team is knee deep in work and in story related content. Enjoy! Production Sam As we near the end of content complete, we come a bit closer to understanding our estimates, and what we can/can’t accomplish in the time we scheduled. The level design schedule is looking tighter than we’d like for the final week, as it has taken a bit longer to record VO than anticipated, so rather than ask everyone to work super crazy hours we’ve made the call to extend content complete by an extra week. This won’t affect street date as we had built in time to the schedule for exactly this kind of situation. So, still roughly 2 weeks to go until we can say “this is the content we’re shipping with”. In the meantime, the team continues integrating content and getting us to the point where we’re ready to submit to ratings. One area of interest right now is the Parade District. Some of you may remember that we had planned to add this in the last Early Access update, but we removed it because we felt it was too intertwined with the story (aka, there was really only story content there, and much less systemic gameplay). Once we made that call, we were also able to make another one: we are creating this area by hand, rather than using the procedural system. This should give the Parade District a very distinct feeling, and provide an experience that is a bit more hand crafted. However, that means a lot of art team time, so almost the entire art team will be working on this for the next two weeks. Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Alex Wednesday I flew down to Texas for a motion capture shoot for a key scene in the Mad Scotsman’s story, that will also be the backbone of an upcoming trailer! This is the first time I’ve ever directed mo-cap. As with most motion capture shoots, we already had edited audio — I recorded one actor in London, and another in Toronto. Now we needed to give arms and legs to those voices. So motion capture is a bit like dance. My job was choreographing the movements and gestures that are supposed to sell the emotions in the voices. I had a general idea of where the actors could move in the imaginary space we’d already built. On the mo-cap stage, I worked with the actors to express the characters they were there to inhabit. The mad Scotsman is big in all senses of the word. The other person in the scene is a British aristocrat who measures her every move. But it’s not just gestures. As I was working with the actors, at a couple of points we’d rehearsed a scene to the point where they were getting everything right; but I wasn’t feeling it yet. In one case I realized that the other party was just sort of hanging out with our mad Scotsman; I needed to tell her mo-cap actress that she had somewhere else to be, and something urgent she needed to do there. Suddenly the scene woke up. It’s funny, because exactly none of her gestures changed. But now, I felt it. In the other case, I hadn’t given the actress her intention. She was saying stuff to the mad Scotsman; but she wasn’t trying to convince him. The actress didn’t know what the character’s “verb” was. And again, not a gesture changed; but as soon as I gave her an intention for her character, the whole scene came alive. I find the two most powerful questions I can ask about a scene, whether it’s written, or recorded, or edited, or mo-capped are: do I believe it? And, do I care? If I can get both answers to yes, I think we end up with something pretty neat. Lisa This week has been a bit nuts. My to-do list was tantalizingly short at the beginning of the week, but as we get closer to content lock, we notice that some things I wrote a year ago need tweaking because levels have changed slightly in the meantime. It’s now a race to get everything done before time’s up! But it’s also fun and exciting. Alex went to Texas for a mo-cap session, so I got to use the Big Desk and drink all his diet colas. (Caffeine is pretty necessary at this point, as you can imagine.) Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Roxanne Worked a lot on weapons and outfits. We are making them so we will have a proper tiering of specialisation. We will also identify them to indicate their rarity. We are getting close to having our definitive list. Stay tuned. In the following weeks, I will also make big adjustments on the loot lists for all containers (NPCs, lootable furniture and so on). We are also modifying our crafting system a bit. Our recipes will no longer unlock by finding ingredients. You’ll find them in the world, mostly on crafting tables and be able to buy most of them at the shop keepers. Hopefully, I will contribute to improve balance and make the game more exciting to explore! Your help is precious for this part, so do not hesitate to give us constructive feedback! Eric This week has been purely bug fixing for Arthur’s story. When I’ve not been doing that, I’ve been integrating the vast amounts of VO Alex recorded that has not been put into the game. I might be mistaken, but I think this is the game with the most VO I’ve ever worked on in 10 years.
  18. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes) Lionel So with world generation, the thing is that despite all its advantages, it is hard to test. And the QA people are nice, but they don’t like untestable stuff. So they invited me to a meeting. Once we all sit, they just stared at me with a nice, silent pacino vibe and I stared back… for a while. I kept my poker face approximately 5 sec. In the end, I just built a better logging system for them to check the worldgen. Also hunted down bad data that was making the system barf. Of course, not everything is true in the above paragraph but who would read programmers’ reports if it was ? Céline This week I have been working on Miss Thigh Highs’ exclusive items. Physically, she may be a weaker character but she has particular talents that make up for any lack of brawn. These items are quite interesting to work on as they can involve several areas of the games (animation, AI, …etc.). I hope you guys will enjoy using them ! Publishing Team – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Elisa Hi! I’m Elisa, the New Media Manager here at Gearbox. New Media is the umbrella term for all the cool new ways folks are creating content, such as podcasts, streams, and video. Right now, I’m starting prep for TwitchCon next week. At TwitchCon, I’ll meet with Twitch staff, streamers, and other game developers and publishers to learn as much as I can about putting together livestreams and working with streamers to make sure they can deliver a fun experience for their audiences. As a streamer in my (limited) spare time, I’m always curious to know what tips and tricks broadcasters have to make their streams unique, high-quality, and entertaining. I’ll eventually translate what I’ve learned to the streams we produce from our own space here at Gearbox Publishing. I’m also looking forward to meeting with broadcasters that are a perfect fit and would have a blast showing off We Happy Few to the world!Feel free to come say Hi! Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Games
  19. Hey everyone, A bit of a short journal this week as we are now more than ever in the middle of the super secret content and finishing the last bits of the game! Production Sam Hi everyone! Continuing on from last week, we’re now approximately 2 weeks away from content complete. I think we’ll need just a little bit more time on this than we have previously planned for, because in our playthroughs we’ve been making changes based on things we have missed - eg adding in the new opening island, noticing gaps in player direction, etc. This means that the work slated for right now has been pushed off a little bit. That being said, we’re still on track to hit our ratings deadlines. However, we have hit at least one important milestone this week: we have, essentially, 99% complete narrative material for the game! All the scripts, encounter dialogue etc for the game is now essentially done, barring some journal entries for encounters and the inevitable touchups we’ll make as we keep reviewing the game. We’ve collated this (thank you Alex!) and sent it off to Gearbox, so they can submit this to ratings agencies. Think of the children, everyone. In other news, this week we had a series of playtests over at Gearbox, and early feedback is that we’ve made some good improvements on the issues raised in the previous report. Hopefully next week we’ll have the guys at Gearbox provide a bit of an excerpt of the report, so you can see the kind of information we’re looking at. Ninja Team Clara Hello all, We had a very interesting week. After a few months of being pulled out of the weekly videos for production reasons, we remove the dust on our film gear and went out to shoot the next Blade Runner movie. Well, that's what we told Sam anyway. What we really did was shoot a series of interviews with a few willing victims (aka select members of the team), talking with them about numerous subjects that we didn't have the chance to touch base yet on previous weeklies... It resulted in two full days of shooting, a great number of rushes and a fully-packed media drive which we can't wait to go through and properly edit. These shoots always represent a lot of efforts in terms of planning, research, and obviously time spent by our fantastic team, who is taking time outside production to help us build all this cool content for the community. That said, it's always super rewarding and super motivating to hear them talk about what they love doing, creating and working on. Makes us appreciate their passion and efforts even more. Animation Team - JR, Rémi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules, Raph and Franzi Jules Hey ! So this week I continued to work on the new combat animation. The animations now work well with our new process! But these animations are not yet totally finished. We need to tweak the timing during the windup to achieve good balancing. After all, we don't want to transform the NPC into an all-powerful killer! We want to use these new attacks to add depth into the combat and make it more tactical for the player. This is the new heavy punch, because I know you guys like gifs! Next I take a break from combat animation to work on another super exciting task: ("drum roll") The Bonesaw weapon! That's our new weapon, it's very powerful and bloody (mouhaha). To activate this weapon you need two power cells and an activate card. I know that's expensive, but imagine being able to run into Wellington Wells and attack things with what amounts to a chainsaw made of spoons. Like really dull ones. Carnage! I think it’s a fair price, isn't it ? Next week I will able to show you the animation about this Bonesaw ! Mike Hey folks! So this week was a short one due to the proper Canadian thanksgiving. I finished polishing up the transition cutscene from last week and started work on some custom animations for another one. Again can’t say much about it other than in the immortal words of Marvin the Martian: “There was supposed to be an earth shattering KABOOM!” Hehehehe. Also I animated a few obscene gestures. So that’s about it from my end folks, tune in again next week, Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel! Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Roxanne On top of working on some content, I’m starting to go through all of our items and categorise them, this will allow us to balance them and handle their repartition on each island. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH PH Hi all! At the moment, I’m trying to help as many people as I can by doing small assets. That gives me the opportunity to work with all the departments and that’s awesome. Everyday is a new day with completely new art to make. Absolutely no time to be bored. This week for example, I made some crutches, various papers and letters with the awesome artworks of Whitney and Sarah, new clothes variations, a gate...
  20. Animation - JR, Remi, Vincent, Mike P, Jules and Raph Jules Hey everybody! So this week I will talk you about combat animation! We continued our work on it this week. We edited the animation I showed you last week, to change how the NPCs will hit you. The biggest change is that now the NPCs step towards you to hit you. They will no longer move in front of you, wait, and then hit you. This brings our combat system to another level. The immersion is more intense and less repetitive. So now my challenge is to adapt my animation so it fits with this new process. It’s really exciting! Seriously when I started this task, I never would have imagined that we’d able to upgrade our combat to that level. Remi Hello people, it’s been a while! Sorry for not keeping everyone up to date on what I’ve been working on in the past few weeks, but the truth is we’ve been working really hard on cinematics and story assets. I did some rigging and exploded a few more objects as well, but the main focus remains to deliver our best animation work for you all to enjoy. Have a good week and hopefully we’ll soon have some special things to share with you! Mike (not so dangerous anymore) Heeeeyyyyy! So this week I worked on some custom animations for our level designers to try and make all of our encounters as special and unique as possible. Then I burned the midnight oil making a cutscene to transition you guys from the first island to the second, and help set the mood for the rest of your playing experience. I know it doesn’t sound like much, however I tried to put a lot of love and effort into it for you guys. So that’s it for me folks, tune in next week, same Bat Time, same Bat channel! Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH Carylitz I did a new character this week! I call him my little monster, because he is made of many other characters. Unfortunately he is story related so I can’t show him. After him, I did a bunch of different things, I destroyed a location, worked on one of the bridges, a house, and created some variations of textures for some characters. It has been a really busy week, and probably next week will be busier, but we are getting there! Whitney Hey folks! Sarah and I are busting our butts to finish the 2d assets that support the environmental narrative in the game. All secret, juicy stuff for the release. I can show you something, though. Here's the Doctor rendered in a classic painting style. PH Wow! This week I worked on a lot of assets, but mostly small ones. I did variations and I retextured various works. No time to be bored, I switched from environmental assets to character assets. Also, do you remember all the parachute stuff I made last week? I finally finished the parachute’s bag itself. Emmanuel This week was a rollercoaster of disciplines, from bug fixing to arting up secret story levels, to rain FX, World Map visual FX or planning one massive section of the game! Good thing is it all ended up being pretty amazing, above all expectations! Here is a wallpaper of an “ideal” look for our country roads! Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Mike C Hi! I’m Mike, the Director of Production here at Gearbox Publishing. This week, besides trying out a new hair color (this month its fuchsia), the team and I started the submissions process to get ratings for all territories. This starts out with conversations with representatives at each ratings board (ESRB, PEGI, USK, etc.), as each territory rates elements differently. At the same time, we work with the team at Compulsion to get the most comprehensive slices of the game to give an accurate representation of what the full game will entail. The goal is not to censor any part of the game, but rather to make sure the game is properly rated so that customers around the world with cultural differences in ratings and sensitivities understand and enjoy the content. We're super excited about what's in the final game, and we can't wait to make it available to the world! Have a great long weekend everyone! (It’s Canadian Thanksgiving) Compulsion Games
  21. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes) Lionel I have been working on, wait for it, blocker bugs ! And to catch bugs in worldgen, one builds logging systems to validate the generated data as it is produced. As a consequence, I spent a big part of the week squinting at those aforementioned logs to find the root cause of some overlapping between buildings. I put my pirate hat on and cursed a lot (especially when bad input data was the cause). Yarrr ! Once I had a good prognosis, I corrected most impactful errors. And I put the hat down, but that part was a bit sad. Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Alex It’s fun to write lists in dialog. A good list has power. In Henry V, the English soldiers charge “For God, for Harry, and St. George!” Somewhere I have a felt banner that says, “For God, for Country and for Yale.” (This motto is listed in a dictionary as an example of “anticlimax,” no doubt by a lexicographer from Harvard.) This is the planned list, a list that has solidified in the speaker’s mind. I had fun this morning writing the sentence, “No one’s going to go to war for the sake of an island of rubble, subsistence farmers, and terribly large badgers,” describing our alternative history England. The speaker clearly has said that before, even if only to himself. Then there is the unplanned list. After Agincourt, Shakespeare has King Henry V read a herald’s note detailing the dead among his enemies, the French: King Henry: This note doth tell me of ten thousand French That in the field lie slain. [...] The names of those their nobles that lie dead: Charles Delabreth, high constable of France; Jaques of Chatillon, admiral of France; The Master of the Crossbows, Lord Rambures; Great Master of France, the brave Sir Guichard Dauphin; John, duke of Alençon; Anthony, duke of Brabant, The brother of the duke of Burgundy, And Edward, duke of Bar. Of lusty earls: Grandpré and Roussi, Faulconbridge and Foix, Beaumont and Marle, Vaudemont and Lestrale. Here was a royal fellowship of death. When most actors get a list, they tend to read it like a grocery list. They know they’re reading a list. Each word they speak is part of a list. It becomes singsong. If you perform Henry’s speech like that, it has little power. Take a moment, and read the above like a list. Now, read the list, but each time you come to a name, pause for a moment, and imagine someone you know. Now imagine them dead. Only then move on to the next name. Seriously, do that. See what that does? It becomes an unplanned list. Short planned lists have power. Long planned lists are tedious. Long, unplanned lists have power. It is a challenge to get actors to perform unplanned lists, because they can see the damn list right in front of their eyes. They know how many names are coming up. Yet you have to knock them off that, derail that train, or it sounds like a planned list. You have to remind them that their character doesn’t know what they’re about to say until a fraction of a second before they say it. (In Meisner technique we were taught to practice lines at the highest possible speed, without affect: “Whatapieceofworkisman hownobleinreasonhowexcellentinfaculty etc.“. That way the words would be there when I needed to say them, but wouldn’t be associated with an emotion. So the emotion would come fresh and surprising, even though the line was memorized.) (The ability to let go of what you know is critical to many artists. An editor has to be able to say, “Who the hell is this character that just showed up?” even though in the 22 previous cuts of the film, that character was properly introduced, so of course she knows who it is. Same thing for a writer.) One of our characters in We Happy Few has a problem: “Beatrice says she loves me. But she loves everything! Me... long walks... sunsets and rainbows of course. Simon Says… big wristwatches on a man… wrapping paper… dandelions… a good night’s sleep… ribbons… Uncle Jack’s bedtime stories… six o’clock … commemorative spoons. I have to know if it’s real!” What’s funny about this list, I hope, is that it is (a) unexpectedly long (b) terribly specific © weirdly diverse. “Unexpectedly long” is only funny if the actor performs the list as if he does not know how long the list is. If the list becomes sing-song, it’s not funny. He has to perform it as if he is searching his memory for everything Beatrice loves. It’s funnier if it sounds like he’s done, and then he thinks of some more things. Ideally, to make it more comically upsetting, the actor should do homework: create a different imaginary circumstance in which Beatrice liked each distinct item on the list. Then each item comes with its own distinct emotion, and it will come out of his creative instrument sounding distinctly different. By the way, giving the actor a distinct imaginary circumstance is almost always helpful, not just with lists. With good actors -- and this deep into development we’ve got an amazing repertory of voice actors -- if you simply tell them something about their imaginary circumstance, the line comes out more distinctly. Even if they’ve said the line the way I intended it the first time, I’ll still tell them something about it sometimes, to see how that informs their delivery. They usually deliver the line sharper. Remember this is in a voice session where we’re doing a new line, on average, every 30 seconds. Our guys are Teslas: they go from 0 to 60 at ludicrous speed. Their ability to interpolate the imaginary circumstance I just gave them and deliver the line fresh is what makes us bring them back. Lisa With the content-lock deadline looming, I finished the last few locations that still needed environmental narrative. People in Wellington Wells didn’t always take Joy. This week I wrote letters and diaries that show you what certain townspeople were like in the days before pharmaceutical pick-me-ups. Get ready for some dishy dark secrets! For fun, I also wrote a couple of Halloween limericks about Foggy Jack, who most definitely does not exist. (And because the muse does not adhere to the calendar, I also wrote a little Valentine’s Day ditty that I'll share with you in February.) Most important, I started planning my WHF cosplay for Halloween. Have you?
  22. Hey everyone, We are pretty much in the eye of the storm of the project right now. The purpose of these updates is not to always show the pretty side of development but to be transparent and right now it is hectic, busy and a bit tense. If it's difficult, and challenging, but that's not a bad sign at this stage. The challenge keeps us engaged, and help us make a better game. Last week in Montreal, the Metropolitan Orchestra paid tribute to Montreal made games during a video game symphony. It was beautiful and our previous game Contrast was part of the show along with many other local games, like all 137 Assassin’s Creeds. Production Sam As we approach content complete (now three weeks away), we’ve been looking at the full game and making the last major adjustments to content that we can. One of the challenges in game design is that it’s rarely ever “done”. The artistic nature of it means that there are always improvements; always parts of the game that you want to put more into. However, you also need to ship the game, and that often conflicts with wanting to make changes (as I’ve mentioned before, finishing a game involves locking down parts of the game, allowing us to do things like bug fix, optimization and polish). Balancing production realities with creative desires is most difficult at the end of the project, and not always an easy task. But, we’re getting there! This week sees the last major changes (eg Adam’s work below, structural changes to the final island, structural changes to the stories, etc) coming in, as we prepare for a playtest of Arthur’s full story next week. This is being done by Gearbox’s user research team, and it’s exciting to get independent verification of whether we have improved on the issues raised by the previous report (and also on all the issues raised by the community!). Hopefully once that information is available, I’ll be able to share some of it with you all. Design Team - David, Hayden, Antoine, Adam, Ben, Eric, Roxanne and Benji Adam Surprise surprise, we’re all working on story stuff, BUT some exciting news. I’m redoing the first level of Character 3’s story to give it a boatload more action. What else… a lot more VO has been recorded and imported, so.. that’s me for the next 3 weeks. Roxanne I have been working on fixing some blocker bugs and lots of VO integration. Most importantly, I just started helping on balancing weapons. We will do massive tweaks to them, so they stop feeling all the same and are actually interesting to acquire. More on that soon!
  23. Sarah Hey lil' Downers! This week was nuts, and it's only going to get crazier until content lock!! Defying the odds, somehow ANOTHER player menu screen was designed: SKILL TREEEE! The design was approved with a surprisingly minimal amount of retching from David and G. When their feedback does not include phrases like "my eyes are unhappy" or "this screen makes me want to kill myself" I know I've done a good job! More to come on that end, it's going to need a bunch of sweet, sweet icons, so I'll keep you posted! I also made some posters for a secret location that describe what Wellies believe will come to pass in the FuTuRe!*~!*!*! (Sam note: we haven’t spoken much about the skill tree yet, but it’s a system we have decided to experiment with to give players better rewards for completing side encounters, and to give a better sense of progression for your character(s). These are two things requested by you guys, and it’s really nice to be able to figure out good ways to respond to feedback. We’ll talk more about this at a later point.) Ninja Department Clara Hello all! As we were focused on the player menu until now, we didn't have yet the occasion to make a pass on fonts and get rid of old assets still laying around after a few years of production -- and which used to make Sarah's eyes bleed. So this week I played around with the HUD (Head-Up Display, basically all the visual information displayed on screen) to make it fit with our new UI aesthetic! I also added the tab design for the player menu. The rest of the week was about going through UI design bugs and trying to juggle between design efficiency and player/team member feedback received. It's always a bit tricky because we all have our own logic or a certain opinion on how a game should represent (and has represented) certain types of information, and it's all about finding that fair middle while trying to be innovative and getting everything ready on time for content lock. It's a good thing we have good coffee and donut breaks! Publishing – Steve, Jeff, Mike C, Mike R, Austin, Meredith, Elisa, Kat, Kelly, Nicole, Sean, Brad, and Erick (and more) Meredith Hey all! I’m Meredith, the Community Coordinator here at Gearbox Publishing. This week, I worked together with Community Manager Naila to come up with some cool social content for the next few months. We’re going to be focusing on some fun and spooky elements of the game in October, and I’m really looking forward to seeing some of our planned assets come together. Thanks for the ideas, Naila! In more immediate news, Nicole (one of our Marketing Artists) whipped up this really cool ’60s-inspired Wellette paper doll! I never thought I’d ever work at a place where “cutting out clothes for a paper doll” was a legitimate part of my job, but sometimes working in social media can be fun in ways you didn’t expect. To see more cool stuff, follow the We Happy Few social channels on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram! Thanks for tuning in! Compulsion Games Discuss this post here
  24. Roxanne This week I and most of the rest of the level design team worked on fixing progression blockers in the story mode for upcoming user research tests in a week and a bit. These are tests where we bring people in to play and evaluate: do they know what they need to know, can they complete everything, and many more things. Besides that, we did a lot of line integration (adding VO to our encounters) and updated our level scripts based on this new content. Animation Team - JR, Remi, Vincent, Mike P and Jules Danger Mike (So much more dangerous than last week) Editor's note: Not dangerous at all. Hey folks! Hope you’re all doing great this week. So far so good, haven’t burned the office down yet, or broken the game yet. So that’s a good sign It was a productive week. Started out by planning out some custom animations for some encounters with the level design team. All except for Eric “Smoopy Bear”, he’s doing other stuff. Then finished up a weapon animation set, then did another weapon animation set, then did some NPC reactions to the weapons and some retargeting of that animation, then did some angry lady animations, then did some statues and now finally I’m back on the custom narrative stuff. So yeah… it’s been an eventful and productive week! Tune in next week, Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel! Jules Hi, this week I finished the combat animation! Fighting is now a bit more strategic. We enjoyed building this a great deal, and I hope you will like the improvements. This is the new medium attack for 2 handed weapons, a double swing! If you don’t dodge the first hit, you probably will be hurt by the second one: Here we have the heavy attack for the 1 hand weapon; this attack is from the top so watch out for your head if this NPC hits you: So that’s it for me. If you want to see more about the other new attack I will give you a rendez-vous next week. Just here, for another weekly journal . Narrative Team - Alex and Lisa Lisa Do you ever wonder where Uncle Jack’s broadcasts come from? Of course you do! This week I’ve written environmental narrative with behind-the-scenes tidbits about The Uncle Jack Show. I’ve also written environmental narrative for the HQ of the Powers That Be in Wellington Wells. While it’s fun to write all this lore, I’m trying to not to spoon feed too much, so that you Downers can have fun piecing things together for yourselves. Like our dear Uncle Jack, I just want you to be happy. Engineering Team - Matt, Serge, Michael, Lionel, Rob, Evan, Maarten, Céline, Neil and Guillaume (sometimes) Michel It’s cold. At the start of the week it was too hot, I don’t think weather is supposed to change this fast… anyway that, it seems, is Montreal. I have been continuing to work with Jules to improve the movement of our fighting NPCs, and also helping fix up and make tools for the level designers to use as they very busily script the rest of the game. One example is a nice event that will tell them when the player is carrying a corpse (naughty player), or NOT carrying a corpse (good player), they can use that event to trigger scripted moments or update quests and just generally finish making the game. Art Team - Whitney, Emmanuel, Tito, Marc-André, Sarah, Guillaume, Cary and PH Marc-André This week, I have been doing some work on two story locations (adding environmental narrative elements such as plaques and paintings and modifying materials/objects after. I’ve gotten feedback from Whitney). I have also been working on getting the interior of yet another house completed. It’s not there yet, but almost. It will be finished by the end of the weekend. Here’s a picture of the pool table I created for the games room in the house. PH I modeled a chalice! Wink,wink to the Quebecers! Antoine, one of the awesome level designers, asked me to fill it with an unknown liquid. Soon you will discover why. Then I had lots of fun modeling an old British parachute from world war II. When I was gathering references, I discovered that those parachutes were firsts of their kind. Paratroopers surely had to put trust and faith into their gears O_O
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