working title: MOLD

working title: MOLD

production blog

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Welcome,

to our developer blog of “mold”, an anti-retro Adventure game currently in production.

for First-Timers and all those brave men battling against the boredom of friday afternoons..

Click here to read from the beginning
( currently 79 posts in total )

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have fun!

All images are copyright to their respective owners.

first slooow status update 2015.

February 19, 2015

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Hi everybody!

This update is really overdue, sorry for that! I was extremely busy in December and January (not a lot of Mold I’m afraid…. but we all need to eat ;) ), followed by a (still active) cold / flu. But I’m slowly recovering and fighting my way back into the project – which is a pretty unpleasant experience….. there is always the feeling I forgot everything (the parts of the job which are not hammered into my muscle memory ;) like Unity for example) but it’s getting better…. slowly.

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So any news?

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We posted our december gameplay video on a hand full of Facebook groups and forums, and got exclusively positive resonance. Quite a lot people liked it, some even shared, reblogged or posted it on their favorite forum (Thanks all of you!!! it’s an amazing experience (and motivational boost) to see people talking about it) and this certainly increased the pressure to finish this massive undertaking of a game.

and to top the good news, Tobias Schlage ( http://www.tobiass.com – awesome URL btw. ;) ), a young thriving artist volunteered to support us as rigger and characteranimator… awesome news, welcome to the team, Tobias!

pastenake_mouth_rig

heroTraube_walk_stop

The rare free hours I had left in January, were used to work on the animation cycles of our little green protagonist. Eventually I got to the point of finishing three Idle cycles, as well as the walk and walk-stop cycles.

 

 

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and what’s next?

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well, I still have to add a proper facerig to the protagonist, which has to work with the current rig and body animation. Eventually i also have to create all “run”, “interaction” or whatever animation cycles which are still missing…

Babette is currently finishing another tiny, flying side character to bring a little more variation into our fauna.

lastenfliege_flug

and I promised to create a more detailed breakdown of the prototype.. The plan is to create a few blog posts covering the main aspects of all techniques used.. so stay tuned if you are interested! (but don’t hold your breath :) )

It’s not carved in stone (depends on how busy we are in our regular jobs), but I’d love to start another production sprint beginning of April, to get the first three sets to final (and hopefully to progress a bit in areas like interface design)… but lets see…

That’s all for this time folks, we hope you like it!

 

prealpha 0.03.64 gameplay footage – “baffled .. and tired” ;)

December 19, 2014

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Hi everybody!

It has been an awful long time since i posted an update, which could be either a sign of no or a lot of progress ;) in our case it’s fortunately the latter… we (almost) finalized the first set, animated a few characters/animation cycles, hooked up dialogs and interactions, and even home brew a finite statemachine based AI to add more dynamic life to the set. It’s slowly but steadily shaping up to a real game ;) who’d ever believed that?

actual gameplay of the prototype (recorded on a dated i7 with a modern (at the time of writing ;) ) GTX 780)

I hope you like it, and merry christmas!

production crunch report #10 — > its time to end the crunch ;)

October 6, 2014

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Hi everybody!

yep… it’s really time to call this production crunch “done” ;) Originally scheduled for January, the production got delayed several times and eventually stretched over the period of 6 months, instead of one. Well, we are all working on Mold on the side, so some delays had to be expected… I just didn’t expect this kind of delay ;) nevertheless it’s still our goal to get the third playable prototype up and running this year (but this seems a bit optimistic)

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But delays aside, there has been a lot of progress to be proud of… The most recent addition is Babette Kahns frog cycles she animated during the summer, and now, finally several months later (i had a very busy summer, and the rendering of the set and cycles took forever… (10K resolution for the background (20-30 layers), the frog is rendered in around 3K) seriously…. it took forever)) ….this is the beautifully animated, (slowly) rendered result

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production crunch report #9 — > the second set

September 9, 2014

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Hi everybody!

(Fortunately) the summer hit me hard work wise, and I had the pleasure to work on six different commercials over the last 3 months… Exhausting and a blessing at the same time ;) but this also means there wasn’t a lot of progress on the Mold front. Gladly I didn’t update the blog recently, so there is still a lot left to show ;)

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progress of the second set..

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This cave was completely built out of existing models/parts of the first set, which was a rather fast process (compared to everything else until now ;) ), It’s still missing quite a few props and the three characters (the 3 “uzaras” of the previous post), but the overall layout seems to work. The lighting and look still need some love, but its a start.

140908_Uzara_room_comp_v19

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production crunch report #8 — > character previews…

July 25, 2014

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getting some assets done…

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There is a lot of progress but my current job unfortunately doesn’t allow me to keep the blog up to date as well. So lets skip the text ;)

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The frog of the first set, sculpted by Thorsten Kesse in ZBrush.
140419_Frog_Main

 

two of the Uzara Heads, sculpted by Jerome White using ZBrush aswell,
140419_uzara_abgeklemmt

140725_Uzara_angry_Main.1

both did a great job in hitting the likeness of the concept designs and delivered some kick-ass models, so thanks for that!

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2 years.

June 24, 2014

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Hi everybody!

well… can you believe it? It has been two years since I started this endeavor, and unfortunately there are several years still to come (but I really try not to think about that ;) )…

it’s more like rebuilding a car from a rusty pile of “shh-whatever-car-that-was”…… it could take decades… Hell, I even think I’ll have to convince my future kids to take over the project some day ;)

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‘gone social.

FB-ThumbsUp_72

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I’ve finally created a Facebook page for the game… I thought it would never happen, but there you go ;) ( It’s fresh and totally deserted at the moment ;), so please help us a little to get the ball running, thanks! )

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so what’s the plan, what’s the “social agenda?” First of all, I really enjoyed seeing a lot of old faces again …. damn I’d even say the platform is disturbingly convenient. ;)

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I’ll continue to post on this blog of course, Facebook is going to be used for bigger announcements and all client-close-combat situations ;) Tell us what you think, and help us to improve the game!
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production crunch report #7 —> prototypes

May 16, 2014

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Hi everybody!

It took me almost two years to get to this point …ridiculous I know ;), but I’m very proud to be able to show off some in-game footage. The third prototype will be created in the next weeks, and will feature “almost final” graphics.. at least a good impression of how the game will look like.

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/edit 140519: I downgraded the animated GIFs to 10fps and a smaller size…  (to save you guys some bandwidth and cpu cycles ;) )

MOSO_prototype_montage_10fps

the most recent Unity prototype created march 2014

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MOSO_prototype_montage_old_10fps

early tests using Visionaire, starting around 2012

production crunch report #6 — > a brief look behind the curtain

May 12, 2014

 

I’m working on the text adventure at the moment (it’s about 60% done), but I try to work on the 3D sets regularly, to keep the tiny renderfarm busy. (every wasted night is a wasted revision ;) )

 

some stats  

some production stats for all tech savvy guys out there ;)

softimage, lowres geometry triangles in scene:                             ~    9 million
arnold, unique triangles (including displacements and Hair):    ~   89 million
arnold, visible triangles (including everything, like instances):   ~ 318 million

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Arnold peaks at around 14gb ram, which is pretty awesome if you consider the complexity of the set (basically every object is displaced (4K, but mostly 8K textures).

The rendertime is about 12 hours on a uptodate i7 to render a 5000 * 1500 frame, which means, for my final resolution of 10000 * 3000 it will be about 48 hours / frame. (Gladly I only have to render two, and not hundreds ;) (the two are split into different passes though)), eventually it will sum up to around 160 hours for this set (my guess).

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140511_spoanf_variationen_small_cropped

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It’s still a work in progress (Babette is working on the ship model, and I’m still tuning the look and overall set assembly), but we are getting close. ;) I’ll start working on the third prototype in a few weeks. (after the text-adventure), exciting times ;)

That’s all!
–s

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production crunch report #5 — > a quick status update inbetween

April 19, 2014

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Hi everybody!

I’m sorry for the lack of updated recently, stupid enough it’s not because we don’t have enough new stuff to show, more because I couldn’t motivate myself enough to write an update (which is the sad but honest truth ;) )

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progress of the first set..

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The shading, texturing and lighting of the first set is coming to an end, The original resolution is 10K wide, so there has to be a lot of detail to look somewhat convincing.

I’m still not really happy with the overall style, but its pretty hard to look at it objectively after 2 months staring at it. I’m currently working on the next set, but will most likely return to it in a few weeks.. (or when the ship model is ready to be imported ;) ). There are still several elements missing (mostly foreground objects, but also some “hero” objects). anyway this is the status-quo:

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140419_spoanf_v60

 

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prototyping the story….

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The prototype montage video is not yet finished, because I spend the last weeks creating a story prototype with the “interactive fiction” engine Quest.

(I know them as text adventures, but seems like IF is more fitting in modern times ;) )  It is a really nice way to test the story and complexity of the game.

.quest

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