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Topics - DaveGilbert

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31
Chit Chat! / Fanart contest - Top three!
« on: October 12, 2011, 10:25:11 AM »
So wow.  This was hard.  SO many entries this time around, and so many of them were great.  In the end I based my decisions not just on the quality of the art, but also on cleverness, originality and my own personal bias.  Anyway, here we go.


"Rosa and Max" by Arnd Oberlander.
This one I loved, and not just because Rosa teamed up with Max is so hilarious.  Rosa's expression and attitude is expressed perfectly here.  Probably makes her long for the days when her sidekick was incorporeal.


"3D Rosa bust" by David Ostman
I always get a kick out of seeing high-res renderings of the characters, since I am so used to seeing them in pixel form.  And I've never seen such a well-done 3D rendering of Rosa before.  Her clothes, her expression, everything is so true to the character.  I don't know much about 3D art, but I know I like this.


"Rabbi Envy" by Simon Lindenthaler
This is a re-enactment of one of the moments from The Shivah, the very first game we released.  There's no more explanation needed, really.  It made me laugh.  Very hard.

Aaand those are the top three!  Congratulations Simon, Arnd and David.  You'll be getting an email from me soonish.  Be sure to check out the another thread with the three runners up.

-Dave

32
Chit Chat! / Blackwell Deception - Fanart contest time!
« on: September 23, 2011, 10:57:16 AM »
You know, it's been waaay too long since we had a fanart contest.  With this game coming out soon, it seems like a grand time to have another one.

The rules are simple: draw, paint, or sketch any character from a Wadjet Eye game, which includes "The Shivah", the "Blackwell" series, "Puzzle Bots," "Gemini Rue" or "Emerald City Confidential."  Or even one of our old freeware games if you can remember back that far.

The top three winners will receive free DVD copies of the game.

The three runners up will receive free digital copies of the game.

Every other entry will receive a small consolation prize just for entering.  So nobody will leave the contest empty handed. :)

(If you have already pre-ordered the game and you win, you will be given a refund)

This contest starts NOW and ends on October 7th.  For examples of previous entries, you can check out the Wadjet Eye fan stuff section.

Remember that nobody will leave the contest empty-handed, so send your stuff our way!

-Dave

33
The Blackwell series / Blackwell Deception is now available!
« on: September 14, 2011, 11:01:01 AM »
It has been a long time in coming. It is with extreme pleasure that we announce the next game in the Blackwell series!


Street psychics. Their blinking neon signs are everywhere, promising love and wealth and happiness. They make a fortune preying on the gullible and milking them dry. So when these victims begin dying and leaving confused spirits behind, it can only take a genuine psychic (and her wayward spirit guide) to clean up the mess.

From seedy downtown nightclubs to penthouse apartments to a luxury yacht on the Hudson River, Rosa and Joey will unearth the truth about the underground world of street psychics. Including some secrets that Joey would rather be left buried.

Available for pre-order NOW!

34
Chit Chat! / Interview with Rebecca Whittaker (voice of Rosa)
« on: May 29, 2011, 07:30:56 AM »
Indiegames.com has posted an interview with Rebecca Whittaker about her experiences doing the voiceover work for Rosa Blackwell.

You can read it here.

-Dave

35
Chit Chat! / Why I do limited runs of physical copies:
« on: March 16, 2011, 07:11:28 PM »


In case you were wondering. :)

-Dave

36
Gemini Rue / Did you buy Gemini but not Blackwell?
« on: March 07, 2011, 01:07:29 PM »
With the fourth Blackwell game nearing completion, I'm intending on pushing the previous games in the series as hard as possible.  But before i do that, I wanted to get right to the source and pick your collective brains.  Specifically, the brains who decided to buy Gemini Rue but hesitated at purchasing any of the Blackwell games (or any of the other games on this site, for that matter). 

So if that fits you, I'd love to hear from you.  Is Blackwell just not your thing?  Do you not want to spend the extra money?  Did you not even know they exist?  If, say, I offered all the Gemini customers a 50% discount on the Blackwell Bundle, would you take advantage of it?

I'd love to get your feedback!

-Dave

37
Gemini Rue / Gemini Rue is launching today!
« on: February 24, 2011, 07:54:51 AM »
So hello!  Today Gemini Rue launches so I figured it would be a good time to setup a spot for it on the forum.

Right now I'm uploading the game to the store and going to give it a few tests to make sure it all works properly.  Then I'll go through all the pre-orders and activate your downloads.  Then the game goes officially live.

Anyway, that's all!  Hope you enjoy the game.

-Dave


38
Previews / Deception: Who wants some music!
« on: November 17, 2010, 04:15:47 PM »
Thomas Regin is back recording the soundtrack again.  Since the game takes place entirely at night, he's going for a late-nite urban lounge/jazz style this time around. 

Rosa's theme
Rosa's apartment theme has been pretty consistent in all the games she's been in.  The style might change but the tune remains the same.  For Deception, Thomas has taken the theme from Convergence and added several new touches.

Gotta run!
The clock is ticking and danger is lurking.  Hurry!


39
Previews / Deception: New background style
« on: September 11, 2010, 09:50:41 AM »
Remember this thread where I asked you if you all would mind if I lowered the production values of the next Blackwell game?  The response was a resounded "no", but I discovered something interesting when I set out to find a "cheaper" background artist.

Number one, low-res pixel art is a definite skill, and is strangely much more expensive than traditional HD art.  It was easier to find an artist willing to do cheaper high-res art than cheaper low-res art.

Number two, animation is just the opposite.  Low-res characters are much easier and cheaper to produce than their hi-res counterparts.

So to get the biggest bang for my buck, I would have to go with high-res backgrounds and low-res characters.  But then I was faced with a choice - do I downgrade the high-res backgrounds to fit the characters, or do I increase the size of the low-res characters to fit the backgrounds?

In the end, I decided that increasing the size of the low-res characters was the way to go.  The sprites are slightly simpler than Convergence, and that actually worked to their benefit.  Since they have fewer details, you don't notice the pixels as much when you increase their size:





Agree?  Disagree? What do you think?

-Dave

40
Previews / Deception: New character portraits!
« on: September 11, 2010, 08:59:44 AM »
Achoo.  Dusty in here.  It's been awhile since I've been able to show a preview of a new Blackwell game. 

I'm going for a new portrait style this time around.  The portraits won't animate as usual, but they will instead be much bigger and much more detailed, along with a greater variety of expressions.

This is Rosa


And this is Joey:


More to follow!


41
The Blackwell series / Deception Design Diary #1
« on: July 29, 2010, 11:22:45 AM »
This is copied over from my gamedev blog:

Deception Design Diary #1: Where I try to expose a phony psychic

Those of you who follow my Facebook or Twitter feed probably already know that the next game in the Blackwell series - entitled Blackwell Deception - is underway.  Things are moving a bit slowly while I get the last few design issues sorted out, but I envision things to start taking off very soon.  I am aiming to get it done before Christmas, but I'm not going to officially announce a release date until I am sure.  This has been the first time in a long while that I've been able to design and produce something completely in-house without any distractions from a publisher, so it's very exciting.  I feel like I've got my indie cred back.  Anyway, I thought I'd start a design diary to talk about the ups and downs of making it.

The Inspiration

A few years ago, I got a call from a friend.  She needed a favor, but was embarrassed to ask it.  To respect her privacy, I'm going to use a fake name and call her Cindy.  For around six months or so, Cindy had been seeing a psychic.  One of those storefront psychics that you see on every other block in this city.  At the time, she had been drifting a bit aimlessly, unsure about her career choices and her place in life, and the psychic totally took advantage of that.  The psychic told Cindy that her aura needed energy work, which cost about $200.  After Cindy paid this amount, the psychic said that she would immediately buy a special candle and meditate on it.  From there, Cindy just went deeper.  By the time Cindy wised up, she was about $5,000 in hock to the psychic.  Angry at herself, she decided that she was going to expose the scam and prevent the same thing from happening to others.

So, she called a news network.

The news network was interested, and they wanted someone to go in with a hidden camera and get footage of her defrauding someone.  Did Cindy know anyone who'd be willing to do that?  Yes, it turns out, Cindy did.  I had just finished the first Blackwell game and she knew I was interested in that kind of thing.  "I figured you'd think it was cool," I remember her saying.  She was right.

I met up with Cindy and the news crew and they affixed a button camera to my shirt.  It was pretty slick, even though it was a slightly different color than the other buttons.  "Don't worry," the news lady said. "You just look like a guy who doesn't care about his appearance."  Fair enough.

So I went into the psychic's office to get defrauded.  She asked me a bunch of questions about my personal life and did something with tarot cards.  Sure enough, the psychic eventually told me that I needed energy work and it would cost $200.  I told her I'd think about it, and I left feeling proud of myself for getting it all on camera.  Unfortunately, my life as a spy was a short-lived one.  I had aimed the button camera one inch too far to the left, and ended up with 20 minutes footage of her wall.  James Bond I am not.

In the end the network decided not to pursue the story, but the experience opened my eyes to a subculture in New York that not many know about.  Cindy's story is not an isolated one.  Fortunately for her, she got out before any major damage was done.  She's now kicking butt and taking names in the self-esteem department. Others... are not so lucky.

The inspiration becomes a Blackwell story

In the years since this happened, it's stuck with me.  I would walk around the city and I would see one of those psychic storefronts and I'd flash back to what happened to Cindy and what the psychic attempted to do to me.  I have read reports of victims who got totally brainwashed by these psychics; giving over their life savings and breaking off from their families, simply because their psychics told them to.  They attract the kind of people who are confused or lost, and then milk them for all they are worth untill they are dry.

I knew there was a Blackwell story in this somewhere, and as I've seen more and more of these storefronts my imagination began to wander.  It's weird, I'd say to myself, there sure are a lot of them.  I know of four psychic storefronts in my neighborhood alone.  Move up towards midtown and you'll see them even more frequently.  They've all been in place for as long as I have lived here.  Even in this economy, they are still around.  How come major bars, restaurants, and shops - which have been in existence for 50 years or more! - are all going out of business left and right while all these parasitic phony psychics remain open?

Surely, I felt, they must be organized.  There must be some kind of unifying power behind them.   Something beyond the mere storefront.  Something even more sinister behind the scenes.  But what could it be?

I think Rosa and Joey are about to find out.

-Dave

42
Chit Chat! / CRPG game: Gemstone Dragon
« on: July 22, 2010, 11:06:27 AM »
I don't usually pimp other games here, but this one hasn't gotten enough recognition and it's a shame.  If you like western CRPGs like Baldur's Gate, you should definitely check out Gemstone Dragon.  The interface and graphics are kinda basic, but if definitely brings back the Baldur's Gate and Planescape "vibe".  Plus you can play it in flash!  I'll definitely make it available to buy here if the developer ever opens it up for affiliates. 

You can read a review of it at the Gnome's Lair.

43
The Blackwell series / Question for the fans!
« on: June 24, 2010, 02:00:02 PM »
Hi everyone!  After about a month of mulling this back and forth and deciding what direction to take for the next Blackwell game, I am faced with a choice.  So instead of flipping a coin I figured I'd approach you guys directly and ask what you think. 

My question is basically about production values. Do they matter?  There's no question that the graphics in Convergence were much prettier than the previous two.  This did help the game sell more, but since the graphics cost more it made very little difference to my bottom line.  This makes me wonder if the people who bought Convergence would have bought it anyway, pretty graphics or not. 

So, I suppose the question I want to ask is... does it matter?  As people who have bought the games before (and presumably liked them, since you are on this forum) what led you to buy them?  Were you wowed by a screenshot?  Or was it something else?  Would you still buy a Blackwell game if I went back to the graphical level of (for example) Unbound, as long as it maintained the same level of quality in all other areas (like story, characters, voice acting, etc?)

This is an internal debate I've been having for quite some time, so I'd appreciate any feedback you guys have!

Thanks,

-Dave

44
Other Games / A new forum section!
« on: May 07, 2010, 10:44:35 AM »
Currently each game on this forum has three subsections (general, hints, and bugs).  Now that we've got several games out, I have a feeling that this is going to get very messy very fast.  So, I'm experimenting with just having one forum for each game.  If it works for Puzzle Bots, I'm going to do it for the other games.  Lemme know if you prefer it this way or the other way.

45
Other Games / Graphics mode error - easy fix!
« on: May 07, 2010, 10:42:12 AM »
This happens on computers with older graphics cards. If you receive this error message:



Here is how to fix it!

1 - Go into the game’s directory and run the “winsetup.exe” file, You will see a section called “graphics driver.”

2 - The graphics driver is currently set to “Direct3D 9.”  Set it to  “DirectDraw”

3 - Hit the save button

That's it!  Some of the cutscenes might be slightly pixellated (more noticeable in the later levels) but it won't affect gameplay at all. 

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