SpaceVenture Project Update #90: Feb. 16th Update: Mmmmm Soylent Smoothee and epic explosions!

Hi out there to all of our wonderful backer folks. It’s time for our bi-monthly SpaceVenture update! First off, things are moving along really well right now. We have made a good deal of progress in getting certain scenes close to the finish line. Multiple game puzzle sequences have also been completed in the past two weeks, including the crazy pipes puzzle I mentioned in the last update.

As a side note, I posted some more information about that scene in a developer diary on the SpaceVenture Rewards website for you $30 and up backers. Don’t forget that all the developer diaries will be available to all backers once the game is shipped. You can check out that post HERE. WARNING: If you can’t log onto the rewards website, please contact pcj@andromedanpost.com

I have a couple of cool things to show you today, one of which you might be able to help us come up with some funny content for.

INTRODUCING THE WONDERFUL TASTINESS THAT IS A SOYLENT SMOOTHEE!

We’d love for you to help us come up with 101 uses for a frosty cup of Soylent Smoothee! Some of the best lines might just get mentioned in SpaceVenture itself 😉

Submit your comments HERE

Another thing I’d like to show you involves a certain ship that we’ve already introduced you to in the demo. Warning, this may be a little spoilery! It’s no secret that people are trying to escape the ship called Nostrodomus right in the intro of the game. See here:

Well we’ve been sitting on this epic explosion scene for quite some time now, but recently our Principal Composer and Sound Designer Ken Allen put some SFX on the scene to make it even more epic! See video below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KACC_-B3608&feature=youtu.beIf you’re wondering when the game will be available, we don’t have an estimated date yet, but please see this update for more details on why that is.

EPISODE 9 OF THE BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

Something happened last week that put this week’s planned podcast topic on hold. Well, that, and some unforeseen complications. So this podcast is all about the freeware game Serena and what a very special collaborative experience it was making for and by the adventure gaming community. We’ve also got some startling news from Pete Toleman, who was last seen fleeing from some rather unsavory types and who had a Kickstarter out to save his company; the amazing Chris Pope regales us with some more news about the SpaceVenture; and, to cap everything off, we’ve got the fine gentlemen of rock, Brandon Blume and Ken Allen, with part 2 of their New Year’s chat. It’s a very special episode, unlike all the other episodes which weren’t special at all.

 OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio / GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole

Under The Half Dome: An Album by Sierra Composer, Ken Allen  

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope

Hero-U Project Update #49: Further Fulfillment Fun

Well, it’s been an exciting couple of weeks here at Hero-U HQ.  With some serious help from Ken and Sue at Pugsly’s Trading Post, I managed to mail out about 3/4 of the “soft goods” packages. Then we ran out of one type of box, while having about 150 extra of another type.  Somehow I missed that lecture in applied post office mathematics.

We also ran into a slight snag with t-shirts, leading to a reorder.  So here’s the scoop:

  • If your tier rewards were exactly one meep toy and a Hero-U baseball cap, we probably haven’t mailed them yet. They should go out next week.
  • If you requested an XXL or XXXL t-shirt, your package is also likely to be delayed until next week. I think we were also short on about five other shirts.
Hero-U Key RingHero-U Key Ring

Missed Out?  Perhaps Not…

If you feel sad that you missed your chance to own an authentic piece of Hero-U history, Lori and I have decided  to make the Rogue to Redemption Softwear Collection available for a little longer.  I’m sure it has nothing to do with the 400 or so meep toys crowding our garage.  Still, they are really cute, and we’d hate to find out the bats ate them all.

Until we add our pre-order store to the Hero-U web site, you may use the Donate button at www.hero-u.net/KS-store to purchase meep toys or the whole soft goods set.  (Why a “Softwear Collection”?  When Lori and I married, I had her wedding dress sent to Olivetti, where I worked.  I told the dressmaker to send it to the “Software Dept.”, which she wrote as “Softwear”.  The company had a policy of inspecting all incoming packages, and I was much mocked for my apparent taste in women’s clothing.  Lest you think, “Oooh, fancy, custom wedding dress!”, well it was… from a stall at the Renaissance Pleasure Faire.)

Rogue to Redemption Softwear CollectionRogue to Redemption Softwear Collection

Our price list:

  • Meep 8″ plush toy or T-Shirt or Cap – $30 + shipping, add $5 more to also get a key ring
  • The Softwear Collection:  Meep toy plus Hero-U t-shirt, baseball cap, and a key ring – $85 + shipping.  Add $5 for each additional key ring and $25 for each additional soft item. Make sure you specify your t-shirt size (S / M / L / XL / XXL / XXXL).
  • US/Canada/Mexico shipping – $5 First Class (Meep only) or $10 Priority Mail (either).  US customers also please add 8% Sales Tax on the product (not shipping) cost.
  • Worldwide shipping – For either item, $20 First Class or $40 Priority Mail.  You may also be subject to VAT when you receive the shipment.  (First Class is much more reasonably priced, but can take several weeks.  Priority Mail should arrive within one week.)
  • Make sure you send your order details, your full name, mailing address, and (if you’re getting the Collection) t-shirt size to support@hero-u.net when you order.  Phone number is also helpful for our international customers.

Our profits on these sales will all go into completing the development of Hero-U.  If you have any questions, send email to support@hero-u.net

Shawn’s New Moves

Last night we received the first set of animation for Shawn from Concept Art House.  We’re very excited about finally getting to see him move around in 3D in the game.

We have an art meeting every Tuesday, usually the first time Lori and I see some of the new creations.  It’s getting more amazing every week!  The artists have especially had fun with some of the crazier requests for in-game portraits.  Wizard about to be eaten by a bear, anyone? Or the… well, that would be telling!

Happy Chinese New Year to everyone – This is the year of the Horse. To honor that tradition, there will be a horse in Rogue to Redemption. Of course, it’s a horse of a different color – It has been dead for decades. We could say more, but that would be beating a dead horse.

SpaceVenture Project Update #89: Feb. 1st Update: Yay more puzzles, Ace’s ship, animations, and narrative

Feb. 1st Update: Hello out there to our generous kickstarter backers! It’s time for an update on the goings on of the past couple of weeks.

Mostly behind the scenes things to talk about today. No new artwork to show you, but I promise there will be some on the way! The development team has continued focus on working on multiple puzzle sequences for the game. This has required a few extra capabilities to be added to our existing event driven system for Unity.

Mark and his team have had some pretty important things going on. Ace’s ship has been given some love in terms of the way it looks on the inside. I’m hoping he’ll let me show you all some of that artwork in the near future 😉 Another thing that the art team have put time in on is some more animations that were needed for Ace. Some of that literally just got completed and we’ll be plugging in those animations over the next couple of days.

Scott, along with his assistant Troels, have continued work on narrative writing for new portions of the game that have been added. There are still quite a few scenes that are almost ready to roll that will need narrative writing completed, so they still got some work cut out for them.

The team is all pushing hard to meet some deadlines we have laid out for ourselves. A major section of the game is almost completed and the deadline is nearing, but we still have a little ways to go!

If you’re wondering when the game will be available, we don’t have an estimated date yet, but please see this update for more details on why that is.

EPISODE 8 OF THE BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

The Historian gets all academic on your asses and discusses the role and meaning of the ubiquitous narrator in Sierra games with the help of Guy From Andromeda Scott Murphy, Leisure Suit Larry creator Al Lowe and Senscape founder and designer of “Scratches” Agustín Cordes. We also get an exclusive update on how the SpaceVenture is going from Chris Pope, learn more about the origins of “ace” reporter Chuck Clusterbluck, and there’s a whole heaping lot of music talk from those fine gentlemen of rock, Brandon Blume and Ken Allen. Oh, and stick around for a little update on Pete Toleman’s Kickstarter near the end – hint: it’s not going well. Get ready for a two hour extravaganza of space fun!

NOW IN ITUNES! or RSS FEED HERE

SERENA, YOU SHOULD CHECK IT OUT!

Some of our good friends created a really cool (not to mention FREE) adventure game you can check out right now! Josh Mandel voices the main character in the game, but you’ll also hear our very own Scott Murphy in there too if you play all the way through 🙂

Visit: http://store.steampowered.com/app/272060/

OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS  

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio / GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole

Under The Half Dome: An Album by Sierra Composer, Ken Allen

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope

SpaceVenture Project Update #88: Jan. 16th Update: New Intern, Puzzles, and TatooRakus

Greetings backer type folks from planet earth! It’s that time of the month again.. oops, maybe that didn’t sound the way I meant it to. Well, It’s the 16th of the month, which means, time for another project update!

SPACEVENTURE PROGRESS REPORT

So we’re pretty excited about some of the things that have happened within the last couple of weeks. For one, we’ve added another intern to the team to help with some of the programming on the game. As we’ve mentioned in the past, the programming on the project has been the biggest time consuming thing, so having more man power there is a great boon to the project.

Two of the puzzles from the game are getting close to completion. As you can probably imagine when we get scene artwork done and lay it out into the game, get the “walkable” areas worked out along with “clickable” objects, that’s all well and good but some of the scenes have some pretty “animated” puzzles that you’ll have to solve if you plan to reach the bitter sweetness that is the end of the game. Some of these puzzles have been hanging over our heads for months now and to see them coming to fruition has been a huge weight lifted off. So I’m very happy to report that we’ve made good progress with that. I personally had the honor of getting one of them to the finish line myself 🙂

As always, more scene artwork has been given love from Mark (see below)

SPACEVENTURE REWARDS WEBSITE POST FROM OUR SENIOR DEVELOPER

For you developer types out there, be sure to check out a recent post from our senior developer, Tyler Drinkard. The post is entitled “Unity Coroutines”. Tyler goes through some of the pros and cons with our engine of choice Unity, and dealing with coroutines.

Check out the post here (WARNING: IF YOU CAN’T LOG ONTO THE WEBSITE AND ARE A BACKER, PLEASE EMAIL pcj@andromedanpost.com )

INTRODUCING FOR THE FIRST TIME PUBLICLY, PLANET “TATOORAKUS”

I am beyond excited to announce for the first time ever one of the locations you’ll be visiting in SpaceVenture, “TatooRakus”. A beautiful, sunny, death ridden planet full of sci-fi parodies that will make you laugh, and probably cry in frustration. Please note that this scene is still a work in progress, no seriously, see the Mark images below.

MARK CROWE HARD AT WORK ON SPACEVENTURE

Below is some really cool photos of Mark Crowe working in his office earlier today. Soak it up, as he’s got some pretty neat things laying around his office. And of course, what you see on his screen is a teaser for one of the main locations you’ll be experiencing in SpaceVenture. 🙂

Don’t worry folks, Mark didn’t injure his hand in a vicious game of xenonian battle chess. That glove is just a tribute to the late Michael Jackson. Or it might be to help keep his hand from touching the screen while drawing, one of the two 😉

EPISODE 7 OF THE NEW BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

“Xenon Rebel Radio Militia”

It’s a new year, and the Space Quest Historian finds time to fiddle around with one of his more esoteric Christmas presents: an intergalactic subspace HAM radio. A mysterious transmission from ace reporter Chuck Clusterbluck is intercepted, but the mystery remains: who is this Chuck, and why is the Sequel Police after him? Rounding off the theme of glitches and game breaking hilarity of previous episodes, there are also some funny stories from the development of the upcoming SpaceVenture. And the gentlemen of rock, Brandon Blume and Ken Allen, present the final part of their SQ4 metal medley commentary – with a special extra treat from the musical talents of Frederik Olsen

NOW IN ITUNES!

or

RSS FEED HERE

OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio / GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY  

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole

Under The Half Dome: An Album by Sierra Composer, Ken Allen

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope

SpaceVenture Project Update #87: Jan. 1st Update: It’s 2014, Happy New Year!

As the title states, it’s January 1st, 2014! Happy new year everyone! I cannot tell you how excited I am about 2014 and what this year holds! SpaceVenture gets closer and closer as each day unfolds! As you can imagine, the last couple of weeks have been a mixture of getting things done on the project, but also a lot of time spent for all of us jumping around from place to place spending time with family and friends, so I don’t have a ton of new stuff to report. Although more artwork got polished and some more programming completed.

How about a look back at what you’ve seen and maybe haven’t seen so far?

SOME OF THE ARTWORK FROM THE GAME

Here is some of the artwork from the game. Most of this you’ve seen, but a couple of pieces you probably haven’t seen. 😉

SAN DIEGO COMICON 2013

2013 COMMENTARY CHRIS POPE DID OF THE DEMO SHOWN AT SDCC

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toeD7kwLdrATESTING WITH SCRAPS SHIP

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtl_KuLWgxAAND WHO COULD FORGET THE TWO GUYS AMAZING DANCING SKILLS

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xejLhLB4C7cEPISODE 6 OF THE NEW BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

The Historian wishes you a merry whatever with this special holiday special of the podcast, featuring very special appearances from Vohaul Strikes Back team leader, Frederik Olsen; the proprietor and curator of SierraChest.com, Rudy Marchant; and a special mention from everyone’s favorite corporate weasel, Peter Toleman! The topic is the many easter eggs that lurk within the Space Quest series, and, boy, you’ll never need to check a wiki again after listening to this thing. Also, we take a deep, hard and incredibly long-winded look (and listen) at the Format Countdown — the Historian’s favorite piece of music ever. Happy whatever, people!

NOW IN ITUNES!

or

RSS FEED HERE

OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS  

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded  

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio / GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY  

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole  

Under The Half Dome: An Album by Sierra Composer, Ken Allen

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope

Hero-U Project Update #47: A Hero-U Holiday

Lori and I wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Joyous Solstice, Happy New Year, and any other seasonal holidays you may prefer to celebrate.

Lori and I sing carols with a local chorus every Winter, so we were inspired to write a little parody very loosely based on one of the Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption events.  Not willing to leave well enough alone, we recruited backer (and professional opera singer) Maus Merryjest to sing our silliness, then Lori put together a video with some of the preliminary game art and more than a few Kristmas Kwirks.  I did the narration.  Please share it with your friends.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxocsH__y2Y

Physical Goods Delay

I just heard back from the company that was going to distribute our physical goods. Apparently they’ve had some family issues and will be unable to fulfill the orders, so we need to scramble again to find a distributor.  As a result, the toy meeps, t-shirts, and baseball caps that were supposed to go out last month will take a few more weeks.  The designs and mailing list are done; we just need to find someone who can box up over 1,000 items and mail them for us.

Art Update

Concept Art House continues to amaze us with the speed and quality of their work. Our in-house team continues to work on the locations, furnishings, and other items.  Eric and Paul have done a great job on painting fantasy versions of our Yearbook backers.  We are adding Chris Willis as a 3D artist specializing in environments. Chris worked on King’s Quest VI and VII, Space Quest, SWAT, and many other games, at Sierra.  Chris also contributed art to Fallout, Asheron’s Call, and Dungeon Siege 3. He’s a terrific artist and we are thrilled to have him on the team.

SpaceVenture Project Update #86: Dec. 16th update: Puzzles, Deaths, and Artwork, Oh my!

Hey there backer folks, sorry for the delay on this update. It’s crazy crazy times here at SpaceVenture camp. From a development stand point, a lot of time and energy has been put into three main things.

(1) A puzzle sequence that involves Ace having to get passed some animated objects(leaving out the spoilers) that will kill Ace if he gets to close. This is our first puzzle that we’ve done like this, so some extra TLC is needed.

(2) The death sequence that involves Ace being killed by the animated objects. We know how much Space Quest fans love their death sequences, so as you can imagine, it’s gotta be right!

(3) The icon UI is still in revamp mode. I’ll hopefully have some details to share in the near future.

As always, Mark and his team have been focused heavily on artwork. Scenery artwork still in the works. One of the scenes he is polishing right now will make you sci-fi parody fans giggle in ecstasy when you see it.

These were the words Mark said to me when he first showed it to me: “How many cease and desists do you think we’ll get out of this scene?”. All I’ll say is it puts me in mind of the Space Quest 3 garbage freighter area big time! I’m not sure if/when Mark will let me show it to you. I think he is really wanting it to be a surprise, but we’ll see what I can rip from his hands in the future 😉

EPISODE 5 OF THE NEW BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

The Space Quest Historian dons his hard hat and delves beneath the surfaces of your favorite Space Quest games. Well, all six of them, in fact. Joined by famed resource spelunkers Akril, BlockMaster and Alan Luckachina, and aided by the invaluable help of Andrew ‘Collector’ Branscom, it’s time to blow the lid off the treasure trove that is the secrets of the Space Quest games.

NOW IN ITUNES!

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RSS FEED HERE

 OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio / GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope

-= UPDATE! =- Leisure Suit Larry creator Al Lowe retires from Replay Games

Al Lowe

Venturebeat Reported this.

The long and the short of it, per Al Lowe: “It’s time for me to go back to doing the things I love, spending time with my family, taking care of my wife, and playing in my big band,” Lowe said in a statement to VentureBeat.

“I really had a blast during the Leisure Suit Larry Kickstarter and throughout development, especially packing those all boxes!” he said. “I’m not leaving for any other reason than to just return to retirement. I’m 67 years old. I don’t know how many years I have left, and the ones I do have left I want to spend with my family and friends.”


Apparently the quote was not originally given by Al Lowe!

Venturebeat then corrected their article after speaking to Al Lowe.

UPDATE!

From Al Lowe’s Twitter :



SpaceVenture Project Update #85: Dec. 1st Update: Conditionals, the UI, and a little piece of art at ya!

We hope those of you that celebrate Thanksgiving are doing well and are having a good recovery from your food comas! I know for us, we are very thankful for all of you, and cannot wait to show you all what we’ve been working on.

RECENT PROGRESS

More updates to our event driven system have been added to account for some missing capabilities. Namely, we wanted to be able to adjust certain things in the game based on the distance that Ace/Rooter were from certain objects. Example, let’s say that you want to look at an object that is on the other side of the screen, however Ace is on the opposite side of the screen. Shouldn’t the narrative dialogue be different depending on distance? Especially if something is currently blocking Ace from reaching the object. The recent modifications have made that possible.

You’ve seen us mention Event Driven stuff quite a bit. Our senior developer has posted on the SpaceVenture Rewards website about “What is an Event Driven Object?”. Reading his write up will help understand things a little better. You can read it here. Also, if you have problems logging onto the SVRewards website, please email pcj@andromedanpost.com

Another thing that has been a focus as of late is changes to the user interface of the game. We have never been happy with the UI. As much as we love the old sierra style UI, we are really pushing for something that relates to that but is more intuitive. A lot of ideas have been passed back and forth and some great mock ups have come out for that. Eventually I hope to show you all some of what has been put together.

As for what Mark and his team have been working on in terms of artwork, they have also made some great progress. New character artwork has been completed as well as scenery. I’ve been pestering Mark to let me show off some of what he’s been working on and he finally released a small piece for you all to check out.

This scene happens about 3/4 of the way through the game. I don’t want to spoil too much, but you can probably assume certain things about the predicament that Ace finds himself in here.

EPISODE 4 OF THE NEW BI-WEEKLY PODCAST BY THE SPACE QUEST HISTORIAN

The Historian climbs his soapbox and talks about the myth of the female gaming market, with the gracious help of real, actual females like Say Mistage, Cassie Benter and Serena Nelson, along with the indispensable wisdom of Professor Jess and Guy From Andromeda, Scott Murphy. There’s also another installment of the Space Quest IV soundtrack rundown by fan musician Brandon Blume and SQ4 composer Ken Allen, as well as an informative segment on the graphic style of Infamous Quest’s Space Quest II remake by artist Jeremy Kitchen.

NOW IN ITUNES!

or

RSS FEED HERE

OTHER SIERRA ALUMNI PROJECTS

The amazing Josh Mandel / Al Lowe’s Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

Jane Jensen’s Moebius and Pinkerton Road Studio GABRIEL KNIGHT: SINS OF THE FATHERS 20TH ANNIVERSARY

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption by the Quest for Glory designers – Corey Cole and Lori Cole

Thanks for all of your support everyone!

Chris Pope a.k.a your humble local intergalactic SpacePope