Happy Monday Holiday again, faithful Larry backers!
It’s been an incredibly eventful couple of weeks. I’m referring, of course, to the release of the alpha version four days ago.
I think it’s safe to say that there wasn’t an individual at Replay or N-Fusion who wasn’t as nervous as hell about this. Alpha versions are not intended for viewing by the general public, and for good reason. We don’t want people rushing to judgment about the final product based on programming, art, music, sound, and text that are incomplete. Speaking only for myself here (although I’m sure I’m not alone), I was fairly certain that we would be inundated with emails asking us about features, puzzles, scenes, and characters that aren’t in the alpha.
Instead, the response blew us all away. The vast majority of commenters clearly had no trouble understanding the concept of an alpha, and, better yet, were overwhelmingly supportive of our efforts. That’s not to say there aren’t issues people have brought up, and we’re listening to them.
But most of all, I think the alpha has proven something to that small, vocal contingent who’ve been doubting that we were serious about bringing Sierra On-Line gameplay, and Larry in particular, back to life.
We know the job is far from over. None of the music you heard is final. Some of the backgrounds you saw aren’t final, including the close-ups of Eve, Jasmine, Faith, and Fawn. There are literally thousands of lines of text and dialogue that aren’t plugged in. There are many characters you haven’t seen at all yet, dozens of animations yet to come, and a lot of fixing and tweaking of stuff that is there. Then there are the voices. So there’s still a lot of heavy lifting still in front of us, but now the world knows that we were serious when we said that Larry will Live Again.
In other news…
The various Backer rewards are all in progress; some are actually finished and in the Replay offices. Here’s a shot that Britton Mathews found of the silkscreens for the exclusive Larry t-shirt.
As I’ve mentioned before, the Backer rewards will all go out at the same time, at the end of the game’s production. We need to wait until all the artwork is finalized, because some rewards, such as the calendar and the art books, require finalized artwork.
We had an interesting little hiccup in the Breath Spray production a couple of weeks ago: on the label, we had text that included the words “Contains industrial-strength breath spray.” The company that produces the custom-printed spray contacted Kevin Kettler and said, “The FDA is refusing to allow us to put that on the label.” So we did a rewrite, but Kevin pointed out that while Larry has been rejected by many women over the years, this is the first time he was actually rejected by the government as well!
By the time I speak to you again, we’ll be startlingly close to beta. So hang on. The best is yet to come.
One last tidbit before I turn back to my spreadsheets. Al recorded Larry’s Theme with his MOJO Big Band just a few days ago, and although we don’t have a final mix for you yet, we thought you might enjoy it. Here it is.