Development

TinyWars April 2020 Planning Update

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April 2020 Development Update Report: Progress made on the first world design, new music acquisitions, and planing for the first cutscene of the game.

UX Flow for the First World

As discussed previously, the overview of the first world needed to be drawn out, we were previously missing the housing area (right side).

The first world is designed to be very interactive, fun, and involved. However, I can not stress enough that most of the exploration here is completely optional.

My Goal

Since much of the world exploration is optional, there are a lot of details and lore that might be skipped over if the player chooses to pass.

My goal is to make the world so interesting and rewarding to explore that the player will do so out of their own fruition instead of being forced to do this in order to progress through the game.

What’s Left?

In order for the first world to be completed, we still need to do the interiors of these houses. The plan is to generate this through the game in an efficient way which doesn’t look boring, but this also depends on how complex and detailed the interiors need to be.

We are still trying to figure out the best way to make it detailed without having to hand draw every single house interior which will limit our time and creativity in the long run.

The Actual Levels

Of course, perhaps many already forgot that this is a tower defense game, and the actual levels need to also be designed!

So far, there is only 5 levels planned for the primary tower defense story.

There are plans for various side missions and optional levels, but these have not yet come close to the radios of my focus right now.

Gameplay Transformation

Back in 2015, when I had no idea what I was going to get myself into, this is what the game looked like:

As you can tell, even in the early days, I wanted to have a good outdoors presence by adding in light rays.

Later on, the game had another massive transformation around 2017 with a huge upgrade to the artwork, light spots, particles, and light ray effects. (All in 2D through gamemaker.)

Lighting really is everything when it comes to setting a good mood.

I have a feeling that the entire game will be filled with a nice atmosphere and beautiful aesthetic, but one thing I also know is that the look from 2017 is not how the final game will look.

Since that time, I had not really touched a single line of code as the game became much more complicated.

Growing Project = More Planning

When more people are involved and it’s no longer a one man show, I have to get the ideas out of my head and elaborated clearly for all to understand.

This is a very time consuming process as all the ideas no only need to flow out of my brain but also be partially created / illustrated accurately and described in detail for others to see and understand.

Beautiful Scene of the Giant’s House

However, in order to make this a game worth producing, I need to be able to bring in experts from various fields ranging from concept art to animations and programming (I don’t intend to write all this code myself). I suppose you could say we are hiring, though I have already scouted some of the new team members.

Feel free to reach out if you are interested in contributing to this project and helping us finish the first world of this game!

January 2020 Progress Update

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Last time we had discussed the move towards an over world where the player can have more meaningful engagements with the world and the story (most of it, completely optional).

This post is to summarize progress made in the over world, specifically the “Grass World” which is the first level of TinyWars.

Expanding the “Grass Village”

Map of the Grass Village (Areas are not laid out 100% to scale)

The grass village is split into several sections that can be viewed in a given “screen” within the game.

  • Village Center (Completed Concept Art)
  • Food Production Area (Completed Concept Art)
  • Graveyard (Completed Concept Art)
  • Stump Castle (Not Started)
  • House Area (In Progress…)
  • Front Gate / Watch Tower (Not Started)

Music

Let’s keep the tradition of releasing a new soundtrack with this song:

This is one of the tracks that might appear in the background of this village.

The Food Production Area

This is what this village is known for; producing food that can be consumed by the village, as well as exported to the various other tiny settlements.

This area might not seem so exciting, but it is significant to the story, and there are some fun side quests to do here.

There isn’t really too much to be said about this area. This is where the tiny people can grow their food in relative peace.

The Housing Area

This was the most tricky to tackle. Primarily because tiny houses are constructed differently from normal houses. Great care needed to be put into the design of the houses to make them feel interesting, realistic, and meaningful.

Resourceful tiny people could build houses out of anything, but the idea is to create houses that seem inviting for these people as well as safe and warm.

The Housing Area has already been sketched out. It is a nice habitat for the tiny people to live happily.

There are too many fine details within this sketch to go over in this post, and I think it would be much more fun for the player to discover it themselves than to explain it all in this post.

The Inside of the Houses

For most of these houses, the player will be able to enter them. That means the inside must be designed as well.

Game Optimization

We plan to return to traditional game mechanics such as tiling systems, repeating objects, etc, to quickly build out interiors of these houses as well as keep asset size and creation low.

However, the outside of these houses are all unique, and I don’t see any other way to do this but to have each house as its own unique asset. The environment and other parts of this world can be generated using tiling and repeating objects, but the buildings will be unique.

When will the Story Demo be ready?

I feel that it is still too early to make a determination on an ETA for the Story Demo.

Pretty much all programming and coding is put on pause while we carefully plan out this game and the story. It would be reckless to put out a date at this point, but we expect to resume programming again later this year.

Thank you for following our development!

Halloween 2019 Update! Fresh Start

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2019 has been mostly silent as far as public posting or marketing has gone. As mentioned in the previous update, a lot of the high level planning has already been finished, now we are diving deep into every pixel and detail of the game.

The First Village (Grass Themed)

This is a core part of the gameplay, even though the game is a “tower defense” game, there is also an RPG element to it.

Each main section of the game takes place in a different village / location. In the first section of the game, we will be in the “Grass Village” (temporary name).

Top Down Scenes

Each section has different “scenes” as indicated by the red arrows at the corners of the screen. So the Grass Village is much larger than just this single scene, but this is one of many scenes within the village.

I would like to imagine each scene like a page in a story book. The scenes will be animated and various objects and villagers can be interacted with. In this sense, it should feel as if we are peering down into a lively tiny village. This top down viewpoint is the most relatable to us regular sized humans.

“Grass Village” Town Center

These four buildings in the center of the village will play a large role for side quests as well as getting some key items.

Top-Left: Candy Shop

Top-Right: Weapons Shop

Bottom-Left: Rare items Store

Bottom-Right: General Store

The player should be able to zoom in on these scenes and get a closer look at what is going on in this world. I want to design the game so you can control the characters and where they go, but you can also simply tap / click anywhere on the screen to instantly get wherever you need to.

Entering Structures

This is just a concept, not finalized, but we wanted some interesting way to enter a structure. I had always been fascinated with “cross section” drawings since I was a child; I felt that it would be an interesting way to go about this.

View from outside a structure.

Zoom in on a certain structure, tear away the front and have an x-ray view inside; Possibly we could blur out the background and let our main characters inside the structure.

This was just the concept idea we had for structures and various indoor areas in the game.

Pictured above is the “Dark Magic Shop” which is a secret structure you’ll have to locate, but the types of items you can get from this shop should prove quite useful!

Dark Magic Shop Owner

The shop owner was a new character that needed a design.

After polling the fans on Twitter and Facebook, we decided on the final color combination.

Haven’t decided on her name yet.

Other Areas

Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of show regarding the other areas of the “Grass Village” as we haven’t finished the concept art for these at this time.

Tiny Graveyard

This is the graveyard. It reveals some very important details about the tiny people as well as the story.

What is the Purpose of These Areas?

In this update, we have not shown a single piece of “tower defense” gameplay. All of these areas are simply part of some RPG engine placed in a game that’s supposedly a tower defense game? What’s going on here?

TinyWars is a story driven game. The production value in the music should have given this away.

The “main” story will probably be presented in the usual way through some cinematic cutscenes that play before and after levels, however anything that goes quite deep into the lore, the backstory, all the interesting tiny details that a majority of the players may not actually want to sit through, these details are splashed throughout the vibrant world of TinyWars.

You could just go straight to the “Tower Defense” stuff and ignore most of this, though you will be missing out on a lot of small details (that may enhance your understanding of the story) and you might also miss out on the rewards / secret item unlocks that you can only get through these side quests.

The choice is up to the player if they want to skip most of these things, as I want the game to be playable by a wide variety of players who can choose their own way to enjoy the game.

I don’t think this type of game has ever been produced in this way, so I will call the genre “Story Book RPG – Tower Defense” for now.

This concept could either be hit or miss really, but that’s why it’s taken us nearly 5 years (on and off) working on this project. I think the idea is worth pursuing and we will do some extensive player testing to see how fun and interesting this idea is.

New Music

With the conclusion of this brief project update, I want to present the newest piece of music for the game.

This will be in the very first level of TinyWars (tower defense level) as the first introduction to the story as well as the tutorial. The only way to make a cool tutorial level is to have some good music!

Thank you for following the development, everyday we inch closer towards a more complete click through prototype to help present the concept. After the prototype, the “Story Demo” can finally be started. Until then, not a single line of new code has been added to the project!

2019 Update – Continuing the Project

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It’s been 2 years since I touched the project. Most would have given up by now, I don’t blame the fans if they lost hope, however I want to announce that I have the full intentions of finishing the long awaited “Story Demo.”

What Happened All This Time? I made a lot of connections.

For those who are interested, my journey as an aspiring indie game developer came to a halt when I officially put this project on hold late 2017. A little over 2 years I spent focusing on business matters with Bizurk as well as a new adventure, UltraMunch.

Through these projects, I have had the opportunity to expand my reach in the industry. I had a wonderful opportunity working with many larger game companies such as Azur Lane, Honkai Impact 3rd, etc with UltraMunch.

On top of having a great experience working with these larger game companies and helping them manage various influencer marketing campaigns, I also had the wonderful opportunity to work with some of the largest anime/gaming influencers on YouTube!

All of this work and opportunities have strengthened my ties to the industry, and I feel a lot more confident being able to secure the success of TinyWars knowing that I have made so many friends in this industry.

I still have a long way to go of course, but looking back on it, who was I when I first started TinyWars? I didn’t know anyone in this industry and I just had a dream without much of a plan on how to make it succeed. As I worked on the project and continued to funnel money into the development of artwork, animations, and music, the lingering thought always haunted me.

“How will this actually succeed?” “Will I ever make the money back that I invested in this?” etc…

Now, having taken a break from the project, and disappointing some 3,500 fans we had on Facebook, I have a more solid vision of how I could actually make this project something that could succeed and not just become another indie game that nobody will hear about.

I apologize for abandoning the project for more than 2 years, but I feel it was necessary and if I hadn’t focused my attention on the other projects, I would still be a nobody in the industry without a plan or connections. To be clear, I don’t think I am some hot shot in the industry, I still have a long way to go, but I definitely have been noticed by some of the biggest industry players and there is actually some potential for this to really succeed now as before, it was mostly luck and hope that someone would notice the project.

How Will You Proceed?

I don’t want to dive too deeply into technical issues or the programming side of things. I already know that basically the entire game should be built from the ground up again.

However, what I will say is that I want TinyWars (at least the first chapter) to be free. So basically the first chapter of the game will serve as the demo. And if we think it is viable, we will charge a flat fee to give players access to all the upcoming chapters as we release them in real time as they are finished.

Currently we have planned for 5 Chapters total but that may change later on. To be clear, the Story for TinyWars has already been written long ago and I’m very happy with it. So if we add more chapters it doesn’t mean that the story has changed but maybe we want to give more content or make it feel more compelling why anyone should buy the game.

I think of this like the “Minecraft” approach to it. Pay one time and get future updates.

Only in this case, hopefully you guys will be excited and wanting to know what will happen next!

What is a “Chapter”

This design is NOT Final

Each Chapter will have many levels within it. The Chapter constitutes a section of the world in which the current story takes place.

So in the case of the first Chapter, it takes place in what is currently dubbed the “Grass Village.” I’m not very good with names for these places, hopefully we’ll have a cool name for it later.

Further chapters will have their own settings and will unlock new locations on the map for players to visit.

ETA for the Finished Demo?

I can’t make any promises at the moment, that would only lead to disappointment. I have my own internal deadlines and goals, but I will not publicly announce them unless I am certain of them.

For now, I just want to publish my intention to return to the project again and finish what I started.

Are You Busy?

Yes. I am still going to be busy with my duties for the various companies and projects I have started.

Thankfully, as our team has grown, I no longer am fully running the show by myself. So I have dedicated certain days of the week to be for passion project, of which TinyWars is one of them.

I have so much to say about TinyWars and the future direction of the game, but I don’t have much to show for it. Once I have some more concept art from our amazing concept artist, I will be sure to post more updates with better details.

Thank you for your support,

For updates, please follow our official Twitter.

You can also follow my personal Twitter here.

What Happened to TinyWars? 2018 Blog Update

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It’s July 2018, the fans were promised (with a huge countdown clock on our website) the very first story driven demo for the game… and it’s not here yet!

What happened to this project and is there still a future for TinyWars? Hopefully those questions will be answered in this post.

This Project is My Baby

First off, I just want to say that I absolutely love this project! I haven’t lost my passion or interest in it, nor do I believe in abandoning it. I think the TinyWars story deserves to be told.

Besides being a game, TinyWars is, first and foremost, a story about the tiny people living in a tiny, insignificant kingdom trying to come to terms with their reality and creating a purpose for their lives.

The story has a lot of twists and turns and hopefully makes your skin crawl. I’ve been developing the story since I was in my college days, dreaming during class and jotting down notes in my notebooks.

There is nothing I would want more than to commit my time fully to this project and continue to tell this story, whether in the form of a video game or just written down in a book.

What Happened to the Story Demo? Business, Funding, and Development.

The project was left off with:

  • a kick ass menu system
  • item collecting mechanics
  • major graphical updates and glitch fixes
  • a fancy new notification system
  • mobile and PC control integration
  • tower building and possibility for customization
  • save / load wave continue system
  • Massive Overworld Map

The estimate that the story demo was going to be completed by December of 2017 was unrealistic and as the month approached, we quickly realized it wouldn’t happen.

To make matters worse, TinyWars is a one man development team (me), and when I was busy, the game only continued to collect dust.

Understanding Bizurk Software

In order to see the bigger picture of what went wrong here, you have to understand the conditions in which the game was being developed.

TinyWars main source of funding comes from Bizurk Software. Bizurk software primarily develops software for OTHER companies. We offer marketing and development services to our clients.

TinyWars would have been the first in-house software project developed for our own profit.

However, because our main source of income is derived from working on OTHER COMPANY’S projects, in 2017 / 2018, Bizurk had its biggest client dealings and development projects ever! We hired on many new employees and upgraded our offices, and to be honest, we were just killing it in aspects unrelated to game development.

Back to game related progress, as the game’s code became more and more refined, it became less a matter of adding code and more a problem of adding new unique digital assets, animations, and art… all of which cost money (because I don’t have the ability to do those things myself).

The Plug on Bizurk’s Funding was Eventually Pulled

Not only was the game starting to become more and more cost intensive, but it also took a tremendous amount of time and coordination to get the digital assets and art designed right. If there was miscommunication or delay in the delivery of assets, the production became slow and took too much of my time away from Bizurk’s client projects.

It became increasingly difficult for me to justify spending time on the game (which was not currently creating any revenue for the company) and spending the company’s money on assets for the game (which again, was NOT doing the company any favors).

So in the end, it was a decision of not only myself, but of the advisers to Bizurk and company, to pull the plug on all further funding and investment towards the TinyWars project.

We Actually Were Offered Outside Funding and Investment

I can’t name the groups or companies who approached us, but we were offered investments from several interested parties.

Keep in mind, TinyWars was still very early stage at this time with nothing more to show off than the Beta Demo released on the GooglePlay store. So when we were in discussions with these companies, the amount of funding offered was relatively low (it wouldn’t deliver the finished game without a crowdfunding or some additional help) and there were, of course, some strings attached to that money which I just couldn’t come to terms with.

Obviously the nature of these discussions were private matters and I can’t discuss them in great depth, but while we were approached and offered investment from several groups, I couldn’t accept a penny until at least the Story Demo was completed!

This was a reasoning I had believed would have benefitted TinyWars in these ways:

  • If we were receiving offers this early, surely we might receive more after the Story Demo was released
  • Perhaps we might get in contact with a developer that more closely matched out niche or genre
  • Perhaps the value of the game could be better projected after the Story Demo was released and more realistic offers might be received

This, along with some heavy strings (more like ropes) attached to the offers were among the many reasons I did not go through with any offers for investment.

Fan Art by Iorisu

Would the Story Demo exist had we accepted those offers? I am not sure, because money aside, me and the artists and everyone currently involved would still need to spend a lot of time to develop the necessary assets, and some of these offers were coming in November / December of 2017, already too late!

AnimeWorld Became a Thing

As some of you might know, long before the Story Demo projections were made, I started a little side project called AnimeWorld (AnimeWorld.io originally UltraMunch.com), which was nothing more than a little blog for me to write anime reviews and post memes on Facebook.

Can you predict what happened?

In the first month of starting the Facebook page we hit 1,000 Fans, then in about 6 months it turned into 30,000 and in about 12 months from the day I started AnimeWorld, it was a whopping total of 100,000 fans. Right now, it’s been about 18 months since I started the page, it’s currently at 300,000 fans, I have a dedicated team working on it and our website is getting a lot of traffic.

Had I struck gold or just gotten lucky? I applied all my best marketing practices and skills (some of which I learned from posting about TinyWars to the anime community) and was able to successfully grow an anime brand. Of course, it’s much easier to make popular memes about Naruto or the most popular anime than it is to post about your original game idea and expect people to pay attention to it or even care.

AnimeWorld is an important project to me now, and it has taken up a lot of my time. But I will tell you, I have met so many companies, gained the respect of popular anime influencers, and built so many incredible connections as a result of starting AnimeWorld. I know it will come in handy when I need to promote my game.

I know this because many game developers and companies have been reaching out to AnimeWorld so we can promote their games and projects.

Our Facebook performance is virtually unmatched, we were reaching millions of people per day and it was awesome!

Unlike TinyWars, I was able to justify putting funds into AnimeWorld because AnimeWorld was generating a return on our investment immediately with Ads, Sponsors, and even some affiliate product sales.

Currently, AnimeWorld has come to a point where I can trust my incredible team to handle it for us, and so I have had some free time to think about further game development and write this blog update! Also, since there was a massive crash in the crypto market and some of our clients have had some troubles, I have found myself with more free time on my hands as well; I am thinking more and more about game development again.

Alternative Sources of Funding for TinyWars

We tried in the past to sell some TinyWars keychains and wallscrolls to help fund the project, but the small amount of sales we received on those, even after being featured at popular artists’s booths at AnimeExpo, wouldn’t even have covered the cost of a single piece of art.

Some have asked me why we didn’t open a Patreon? To be quite honest, I didn’t want to open a Patreon until we had something more substantial to show off to the fans. We had nothing at the moment besides the Beta Demo which really isn’t much to brag about.

Fan Art by Blxink

Just like with the investors, I didn’t feel comfortable asking for money from the fans when we hadn’t “proven” ourselves worthy of it.

If we were able to raise significant funding on Patreon, say $2,500 – $3,500 / month minimum, I would be able to let go of some projects and focus a lot of time exclusively to TinyWars. But based on the current fan base and level of interest in funding the project, I wasn’t sure if this would happen.

I would have felt awful if we were accepting a couple hundred bucks from a few big supporters and failed to deliver the demo! The risk is a lot higher with less funding and I would just feel terrible if we failed and probably want to give their money back! With a few thousand dollars of funding per month, at least I would have a proper and reliable budget to work with.

Again, since no Story Demo existed, a kickstarter or indiegogo campaign was out of the question.

Exactly How Much Was Invested in TinyWars Up To This Point?

You are probably wondering why I kept saying we invested “so much” into the project or why I think we have put a lot of value into the game.

And this is exactly the truth, we have invested a significant amount of our own money into the project, and that money DID NOT GO TO WASTE.

Above (sound cloud embed) is a live recorded orchestra piece which was supposed to be used as the game’s main theme song. This is such a beautiful piece composed by Edwin Toh. Really magnificent piece, and I think anyone would say that the quality and attention to detail that we put into this project was very high.

This was not your typical mobile tower defense game…

All of the money we invested in the project ended up manifesting itself as permanent digital properties and assets to the game, not “wasted” in a typical sense.

Most of the fans have not seen everything that we have, the music, the animations, the artwork that we have developed is just sitting on a hard drive not doing anything yes, but they are still fully part of the TinyWars package that would be included in the final game.

I literally just posted this on SoundCloud to show off one of the amazing songs you guys never got to see in the game yet…

So in a sense, if the game were ever to be sold or evaluated based on current existing digital assets and licenses, the value of the game would already have presented itself. It’s not one of those things where I could say “I coded this game for X years so there’s a lot of value” it is more of a financial thing where I can present a ledger and show exactly how much value the digital assets in the game already have.

In this sense, I am not surprised that we were approached for investment so “early” in the game’s development, as the assets, the art, the music, and the ambition I believe was very obvious.

Is it a Result of Poor Planning?

Not everyone agrees with me about my defense of the project’s valuation and assets. I am still ridiculed by some of my personal friends for investing so much money into the project only to come to this point where I still have nothing really to show other than some music, art, and ideas.

How exactly was TinyWars planned? What went wrong here???

Since I come from a web development background, the development was planned exactly as such. UI / UX mockups were developed in advanced. I literally have bundles of hand written papers with the game’s code and user flow on them. A lot of the game was developed first on paper before digital assets were commissioned. Approximate pricing and maximum spending budgets were laid out exactly, I was not to go over those budgets.

As far as money was concerned, I did not “over spend” on the game, because I was prepared to and planned to spend exactly as much as we did.

But there was one thing that I did not quantify or account for in my planning of the game’s development, and that was my time in relation to the growth and development of Bizurk Software. I admit that this oversight was a huge problem which lead to the eventual delay of the Story Demo.

 

At the time, I did not account for my time being sucked away from development because at that time when I was making my plans, I was able to reliably spend 3 – 5 hours every day working on the game. While everything from the art, UI / UX assets, and finances were planned out in advanced, my schedule was not, and was ever changing as new clients, employees, and offices came into the picture.

Again, this is another problem with being a one man team. No one is here to cover for me while I am away. And yes, while our artists are able to work without me, and most of the work is done without me needing to supervise, I was still the director for the game, it was my vision after all. If I was not there to give precise instruction and relay the information exactly then there is no progress to be made. It takes a long time to write detailed emails and instructions for the artists, but I assure you, every artists I have worked with loves my attention to detail and exact requests.

Fan Art by RiceToast

Without me at the helm of the project, nobody was around to make progress. When I wasn’t around, there was no progress and this was a problem.

The Game was Too Ambitious

I hate to admit it, but the vision we had for this project, the attention to detail… basically everything which made this project so great and special, also made this game nearly impossible to complete!

Most mobile games do NOT look like TinyWars. I am in no means hating on these games, I very much respect the success of popular mobile games, but if you think about most mobile games, they are usually turn based or collecting games, or have some very simple mechanics which can easily be templatized and replicated. (again, not hating on these simple mobile games, just making an observation.)

TinyWars is more the type of game you would see on a console or some AAA release, with a fully fleshed out story mode and we even had some ideas for online multiplayer. This is not a simple moble game that could be developed by a one man team and enjoyed by millions.

Fan art by ZeroZephy

No, TinyWars is certainly no FlappyBird or CandyCrush. Not everyone likes Tower Defense games, and not everyone likes anime. The audience for TinyWars is already a little restricted, but beyond that, the entire project is just a massive mountain that a single developer like myself and a few artists could never create on our own (without a significant budget).

This isn’t some visual novel game or turn based strategy game, this was like a Tower Defense version of Breath of the Wild with an old school Mario style over world riddled with secret notes and story telling, combined with item collecting and tower customization.

And to be honest, looking at some of the most popular anime games out there, it’s not like it has to be some epic AAA title to become the most popular anime game out there. So it is a little discouraging to look at the current trends in the market and compare it to a project that I consider to close and dear to my heart.

TinyWars is Massive!

Consider the fact that this was Bizurk’s first video game development project ever. I think every indie developer’s first game idea is overly ambitious. The seasoned experienced game developers (in the indie communities) have learned to develop simple and brilliant ideas that could be developed in 24 hours, as opposed to crazy games inspired by their favorite childhood memories.

These guys really know what they are doing and it is part of the reason mobile games can be so addicting, yet simple, and so plentiful.

Fan Art by Moriartea Chan

Ironic that a game revolving around tiny things could be so massive?

We go from exploring the stump village to a candy filled sand castle, then we travel inside the giant’s house, explore the mines beneath the rock, and pop out at the kingdom beneath the mushroom with a bunch of optional side quests in between.

Fan Art by Mariaribita

I have developed and revealed lovable characters than the fans wouldn’t have even met in the first levels of the Story Demo; we’ve gone pretty far!

Oh boy, the vision and planning that went into the total game, beyond what players would ever experience in the story demo, the entire story for the game was already written out!

Is the Game Going to be Abandoned?

Absolutely not! All the assets, properties, and music for the game are still the property of TinyWars, and if we abandoned the project fully then all of that certainly would be considered a waste!

However, it needs to be said that development for the game can NOT continue as it currently stands. We simply don’t have the funds to proceed with the enormous amount of digital art required to finish the game. I don’t have the money to work on this full time without focusing on other responsibilities or clients. (Oh if only I were a Bitcoin millionaire, I’d be able to work freely on this project with no worries in life!)

No, the game is not going to be abandoned, but we do need to delay any hope of the Story Demo coming out anytime soon, and we certainly can’t be making any more promises about release dates, funding, etc.

I will be more than happy to sit down with any company who wants to offer some serious investment for the project.

A Conversation I had with a famous Game Developer

During Anime Expo, I shared a hotel room with a group of friends. One of those friends included a very famous video game developer who most of you might actually know if I said his name. For the sake of his privacy, I won’t mention it.

We discussed the current problems with TinyWars and he gave me some good tips and advice about game development.

A Normal Sized Human

Surprisingly however, we jokingly had a conversation about an imaginary game that I could develop. I came up with the idea of a stupid, joke mobile game as I was explaining how simple it would be to make some mobile game rip off and post it to the app store.

However, this joke concept for a game actually sounded very interesting to this game developer and he told me how he would totally play and love to see a game like that if it actually existed.

It wasn’t until a few days after that conversation that I seriously started to think more and more about that joke idea I came up with in my head. From a technical perspective, the game would be a lot easier to develop and TinyWars. I could even reuse some of the code for the new project.

From an artistic and digital asset perspective, the game would also require a lot less assets.

And finally and most importantly, from a game adoption and public interest perspective, this game idea is so generic, so mainstream, that just about anyone could fall in love with the concept and play it. You don’t have to like a certain genre of game to be a potential candidate for this game. The concept is simple and easy to explain in a few words, and I really do think that this could be the “proper” first game Bizurk develops and finishes.

Beautiful Scene of the Giant’s House

I certainly wouldn’t need outside funding to finish such a project and even just some tests of the project or videos posted for fun might gain some traction.

… I know I’m building up this idea as if it’s something grand and epic, thinking about it, it kind of it unique and catchy!¬†In fact, I have already begun marketing this new idea and have received immediate positive feedback and results! Perhaps this may be similar to the explosive growth of AnimeWorld? A meme worthy idea, worth taking a second look at, and a game development concept so easy to replicate.

Concept Menu Art

Should this new mobile game idea actually become popular, the success of that game may be able to fund TinyWars or at least put Bizurk in the spotlight for some bigger opportunities with investment, fan funding, or anything we wanted at that point.

Nothing is Set in Stone

So, I haven’t committed to anything at this point, but I am saying what has been on my mind lately. From the best marketing practices I have been applying and understanding from running AnimeWorld and interacting with a bigger audience, to the advice and interest I have received from my closest fans and friends, I really do appreciate all the love and support I have received from everyone so far.

I hope I can make you proud of our accomplishments so far, what is to come, and what is still yet to be thought of.

I am the Game Dev now!

I truly appreciate all the help and support we have received for this project so far, it really means a lot to me! We will continue development of TinyWars when the time is right and when we are actually prepared to take on the monumental task.

TinyWars is not an idea that can be compressed into a simple point and click mobile game, if we are going to make this game, we are going to do it right!

First Level of Story Demo Design Complete

First Level of Story Demo Design Complete 2016 1317 andrew

I am pleased to announce that we have finalized the designs for the first level of the Story Demo! If you are unfamiliar with the Story Demo, it is basically the next big project we are working on. The story demo is intended to accurately represent the final product of the main TinyWars game, so the first level of the Story Demo should also reflect the first level of the full game.

Level Design

Pictured above are the art assets for the first level. These assets took about two months to fully design and built out. Part of the work was figuring out the exact look and color scheme we wanted for this level, the second part of the workload was actually designing and detailing all of the objects you see in the screenshot above.

The art assets here are not exactly the same as in-game level assets, as they still need to be optimized and created appropriately for game use. This includes turning the “floor” layer into ground tiles that can be repeated across the level as well as organizing some of the assets in a way that can be loaded and interacted with. So this is why the design of the first level is complete, the but actual first level of the game is not ready yet.

Old Designs

Here are some of the variants of this single level’s design. We have gone through quite a lot of variations from bright green daylight levels to duller designs, and finally to the design we think is key to this scene, both story wise and aesthetically.

UI Updates

On top of graphically refining the look and assets of the background elements, the “Summoning UI” has also been refined with a more minimalist approach to the initial visuals, followed by spectacular design and animation! It’s a lot more powerful this was as opposed to how it was before.

The Next Steps

Now that we have completed the design of the first level, what remains is to actually implement these assets into the game engine itself and start working with it. On top of the still design assets pictured above, there are animated assets that need to be worked out such as the light rays, dust particles, and other elements that can’t be seen in that still image alone.

We have come a long way with the design, graphics, and sound of our game. I am pleased to announce that many people have given us overwhelming positive responses from the above still screenshot posted. Visuals is a huge part of what people judge in a game, so there is no doubt in my mind that simply having good graphics will take the game a long way in terms of its reputation and respectability.

There is still more that needs to be worked out gameplay wise, and we will get to that in a future update once this firsts level is put into action!