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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Beta? Probably not.

Well, I've finally done a few playthroughs of the game as it currently exists over the past few days. I have a long list of bugs, but most of them are no real issue to fix before Monday. This version of the game is entirely playable and pretty fun in most regards.

However, a few bugs are related to the battle engine I have. It claims a number of event switches (without visibly naming them or indicating it has done anything) and does weird things like flip images backwards or stopping movement of monsters and townsfolk. The only way I can fix this is to cut ALL of the switches out from that area and paste them on a higher number, then redo every event which uses that switch to use the new switch number. For obvious reasons, that could break the game. So releasing a beta before I do that is sort of crazy. The reason I didn't realize it up until now was that when you test events in the new area the problem switches are in the range of 70-100. The new area's switches are in the range of 100-160. The problem switches are attached to the chapel area. I made basically all the events there before realizing that the battle engine was using them. This was what caused the bug in playtests for the last version where you could not gain experience after battles. I had THOUGHT that was all of the issues it caused, and left the switches where they were. Now I realize that is definitely not the case. The problems they caused aren't immediately apparent until you play through the chapel and then go to Sayda. My testing of the Sayda area alone wouldn't have revealed the issues because the problem switches weren't on.

The second issue is Prince Amezwar. I had originally envisioned a struggle between him and Princess Tasa that drove the missions in Sayda. You could choose between his "evil" path and her "good" path. Except that the more I play it out, the more I realize absofuckinglutely no one is going to choose the guy over the girl in a game like Overwhored. Particularly if he's the evil path.

There's also some incestuous subtext there, and I'm going to edit it out. I'm purposefully making this game somewhat vanilla to appeal to more people. I believe that would squick a lot of people, even if it's something I personally would find fun.

At this point I'm considering just removing Amezwar (whom you know as the bandit leader) and replacing him with a girl.

Honestly I could let you playtest it at this point and find a few bugs. But realistically, I should probably postpone it for a week so I can sort out these issues. Remaking the chapel and replacing Amezwar with a female character is probably the way to go. I apologize because I had promised to have the beta out this week and I've pushed it back a few times already to expand the content (Which has been successful; this is by far the biggest section of the game so far). I *could* release the beta at this point very easily, but it would cause a great number of problems. Particularly important to me is that most beta testers don't like to play the game multiple times. I have no intention of draining your enthusiasm for a new release by requiring you to play through the game five times in a row as I solve new bugs and introduce others.

So one more week, and I should have this sorted out. Thanks for your patience.

It probably wasn't a good idea to schedule a beta test to start on April Fools Day anyway.

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Good, Bad, Good news

Well, there's lots of good news this week and a little bad news (but just for me).

Today I was supposed to be starting my week long vacation. However, I was so swamped with IRL work last week and will be this week that I have to cancel it. This is the entirety of the bad news.

The good news is that the next release is aaaaaalmost done. I need to work on the sex scene and do my personal playthroughs of this version of the game before I make the beta, which I anticipate (unless I find major bugs) being available next Monday, the 1st of April. (On second thought I'll release it on the 2nd of April so people don't think it's an April Fool's Joke.) I probably would have gotten it done this week had I not gotten so swamped with work. Again - if you are a donator and do NOT wish to be part of the mass e-mail list, send me an e-mail and tell me. I'll remind everyone of this before I send out the beta.

The heroine of this section is Branda, who you ran into in the Oasis if you played the last version of the game. There's a dungeon, a few cutscenes, and more than one mission here, as well as a full, large city. There will be a choice you can make between a "good" and "evil" path here, but this release will only have the "good" path available. Once this release comes out I'll make the "evil" path and also implement a few dozen other small things I have wanted to do for a while, like making Orgasmic Energy actually do something, setting up energy harvesting from the crystals and making the girls in the crystals vary in appearance.

 Now for something I've wanted to bring up for a while: My viewing audience. I pay attention to who plays the game. Below are some (Not entirely serious) ideas for appealing more to these audiences.

1: USA
Congrats gentlemen and ladies, you may proceed to clap, for we are #1. This is no surprise. There's a lot of Americans on the internet. I shall include more large breasted women and explosions in your honor.

2: Germany
I will endeavor not to make jokes about Germans loving a game where you get to play the bad guy. I will include a long, lovingly crafted minigame about wars between various tiny breweries making excellent alcoholic beverages and warring with each other incessantly. (I'm not actually going to do this. I'll include more bondage elf though.)

3: Canada
I vow to include more bear women. These are irresistible to Canadians.  I will allow you to burn down a pristine, white house. It is a little known fact that this is how you make Canadians present an ahegao face. I shall also allow you to beat up a stereotypical guy from Toronto. Which should increase popularity with everyone in Canada who is not from Toronto. (I'm not sure if that's a net gain or loss)

4: United Kingdom
I'm not sure how this happened. This game includes no cheeky schoolgirls getting spanked, which I'm pretty sure counts as 99% of British pornography. Though it could be the conquest. Conquest makes up the other 1% of British pornography. I shall include more conquest.

5: Australia
Obviously I need only include more monstergirls. Living in a land of dangerous monstergirls will probably only remind them of home. Although Overwhored is free, I may have to start charging money. Only to Australians. Perhaps 50 Euros a download or so. Exorbitant prices are how Australians know they are loved.

6: Spain
The release after this one (with Branda) will contain a basque halfling girl as that chapter's heroine. I'm not sure if her being Basque will chase these fine people off or not. But I like the basque (they're everywhere here) so the cute shortstack is gonna stay. This post is actually completely serious. She's a planned heroine.

7: Russia
My first reaction to learning that Russians were here was to hide everything before they burned down all the things I love. And then I realized. "Oooooh. The Fruit crates". Of course the Russians will love a game where you can burn things for no good reason. Therefore, I shall include more Fruit crates. Also bear women. And more varieties of alcohol. Also more potatoes.

8: Poland
I shall include a long scene about cold and starvation in a world where everything hates you and you have nothing to do but have sex with your gigantic harem all day. I'll also add some Winged Hussars.

9: France
Um. Yeah, I'm not sure what I can offer here. I love France, I love the French. (Okay, I mostly love your comics, music and cartoons, having read Heavy Metal as long as I've been alive and REALLY enjoying Wakfu a while ago. And some of the Franco-Belgian Comics like Alexia's Demons are utterly fantastic.) All I can do is ensure that my porn is fun, straightforward, and non-pretentious, which will no doubt seem alien and strange to you but should be satisfying. In return, I wish that you all would translate - ah, ANY OF YOUR STUFF. It is exceedingly annoying to look for fan translations of French stuff. Because your country never translates anything. Jerks. (I love you France. Call me!)

10: Italy
I shall include a wide selection and variety of enormous hats. These hats shall convey authority and respect among the common man. Also I'll allow you to deck yourself out in extra gold and finery. Perhaps a giant hat made of solid gold. That is on fire. Also, I shall replace the gameplay with well painted gorgeous art that makes no logical sense story or plotwise but looks fucking awesome and includes plenty of naked women. Your comics have taught me what you truly love well.

Honorable mentions:
This nation fell off the toplist a while ago but I remember it because I love Brazil. I should note that every time I say this online a dozen Brazilians usually appear to tell me how awful their country is. Which is true because your country is full of giant nightmare spiders. So I will simply say I like the common people of Brazil a lot. In your honor I shall include some fine round ladybutts and more cute brown girls.

Scandanavian Nations:
These appear on the toplist often but fall off often as well. Sweden, Norway, etc. If the sort of art your artists put out is any indication, you love the fuck out of anal sex. So I'll just put some more anal sex into the game. I keep trying to hire Harmonist's11 so I can get some of his awesome anal scenes in the game but haven't managed it yet. There's also a few characters who will appear later that are inspired by Scandanavian culture. I'm debating making one Finnish and the other Swedish so they may quarrel often and amusingly.

There are other nations I'd LIKE to see but I don't. No Japan, no China. No India. No Belgium. It would probably help if I spoke any of the languages of those nations. But ah well. You can't win 'em all.

If you DO speak another language and think you could translate Overwhored to it and do a halfway decent job, let me know. That's an entirely serious offer. I really don't care what language it is. I simply wish to share the game with people who can enjoy it. I want people of all nations to be able to enjoy the game. No pay, but you'll go in the credits if you like. Overwhored is a game that should be shared with everyone, and in all truth despite the jokes above, I have yet to meet a people or nationality I don't like. I want everyone to simply enjoy the game and have fun.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Other Stuff

I'm addressing this in a second post from the status post, because this isn't about the game directly per se.

One of the other things I've done this week is set up a new subforum on the Hentai Highschool Forum for game design (which I'm an admin for) dedicated to Overwhored and RPG Maker games. If you decide you want to start a game, do it! This is a good place for it, and I've made a sticky with some resources for new designers.

I will still update the threads on the forums you came from, of course. But you can consider this the "dedicated" forum for Overwhored. Fanfics, fanart, suggestions, or your own game can go there.

And speaking of that forum, there's a new game there called Harem Collector that's just getting started. It has a nice start to it, so take a look on the Overwhored forum, or at his blog:

I also wanted to bring up suggestions. I've gotten a few lately, so here's my general stance on them:
I will probably not include suggested characters in the game unless they can be cleanly integrated into the extras. Additionally, they can't interrupt the story.

Some of you have brought up Fenoxo to me. I understand Fenoxo's position on a lot of things pretty well. One thing I do *not* want to endure is what he has dealt with concerning some OC's created by certain donators. I love your donations and I love your suggestions, but like I said when I started accepting donations - this is my story and my game. I will do my best to design it to be enjoyable to everyone, but everything that goes into this game needs to be free for me to change, alter, or redesign as the story requires. So if you make a suggestion for characters or things in the story, understand that I *may* incorporate it, but that I may not, or that I may make big changes to anything you suggest if I put it in.

I do not *ever* want to discourage you from making suggestions. But keep the above in mind when you do. It doesn't matter if you donate or not, or if you're a longtime follower or not. Anyone is free to suggest what they like, but I will decide what goes into the game and how. And what's listed in my outline and on the extras list gets priority. Even if I don't respond, I DO listen to all of your suggestions. Those of you who have followed Overwhored for a while know that I've made many alterations to the game based on your feedback, so trust me in that regard.

Now that the gruff speech about boundaries is over, go and get suggesting, get making, and get creative!

Progress as of 18/Mar/13

This week was productive, though not as much as I'd like. There was a family tragedy this week and a funeral. I won't go into details here, but I had a few days absorbed by those concerns. As a pre-emptive note, this will not significantly impact the development of Overwhored. The individual who died was a distant relative and I never got to meet him personally. If there's any further delay to my work on this it's probably just that I'm giving some of my free time to helping that branch of the family, and I do not forsee being able to do much of that. I will be taking a week's vacation in a few weeks though, and I will not have a computer with me. Hopefully this release will be ready before then.

Anyway, this version is getting close to done. I need to make a few more battles, and then the content is "done" in the broad sense. Which is to say that I need to start deleting my testing placeholders and start seriously working on balancing things for this release. There's a lot of small details that need added as well.

Basically I've put everything in place and it's connected roughly, but there's a lot that needs to be done before it's even ready for a beta test. I'll try to get as much of that done this week as I can, but I'm not sure what will be enough time.

I REALLY expanded this section from my initial outline in hopes of making this a more worthwhile standalone section. Hopefully you all will enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed working on it.

A little preview. Branda and Rubati are conspiring as the Overmind sneaks around. (Observe the new sprite work and face for Rubati I whipped up.)

Monday, March 11, 2013

This week's Update

Well, I did a fair bit this last week. I did two cutscenes and a decent amount of other content. There's still a fair amount left to do before this is beta-test ready.

I'm at the point where you can *technically* play the entire scenario with only one small gap at the very end, though there's no fighting yet. This release is only going to have one of the two paths you can choose between.

People have given some pretty positive comments on the game at various points, and I appreciate it. I will state that *particularly* with the sex scenes this game is very much a work in progress. I'm a writer by training, so I'm used to laying down my material hard and fast, connecting the dots in my story outline and then heavily rewriting and rewriting again. I've had a friend (who wishes to remain anonymous) write some extended sex scenes for characters like the Blacksmith so it's not quite so obviously a brief patch on the content, and which frees me up to keep moving the plot forward. You'll see the sex scenes (and most dialogue/other content) extended and rewritten a few times, but not until the main storyline is completely created.

With my on-paper writing I tend to keep it very much to myself until I've got a third draft going. I'm pretty paranoid about letting people see it. So doing a project like this that's so transparent is... different. But not unpleasant.

In other news I have a new artist working on the project. He's working pro-bono (Aka: For free) and will be doing some in-battle art for the project and other little things which aren't in the core or extras, which is pretty handy. He also did this neat pic, which I think makes a good title screen.

You can take a look at some more of his work here.

I always value artists who want to contribute to the game. If you want to do so, let me know! If aren't a professional and you want to do some fanart or write a fanfic, you should feel free. Even if you make art that won't go into the game, I do love the hell out of it. And if the fanart is very good, I might well just put it in. You can look at my own art to realize I'm far from the best artist in the world, so don't feel afraid to show me your fanart even if you're not a cool professional artist like the ones I hire to do the official art for the game. I love it all.

Thanks for being a fan.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Current State of the Game

Since the last release I've been working on an entire new heroine area. We're out of the intro stages now and getting into the meat of the game, which means areas are larger. You're not going to see delays like you did when I was first starting the project, but because the content is getting a lot bigger you're going to see a bit of time delay in how long the releases will take.

At this point in time there are eight major development sections that need to be finished in order to release this version of the game. I can maybe tackle two a day (or possibly more), but because I work on this in my free time, I don't know precisely how long that'll take.

Art-wise I have all of the images I'll need to finish this section. However, I'm working with some artists on scenes which can be put into the game during this release. It's unlikely the cowgirl farm will be in this one, but the much-demanded tower mistress scene probably will be.

I'm starting to say this every release (because it's true) but this is by far the biggest new section of the game I'll have released. There's the new and fairly large city of Sayda, a dungeon, and a heroine area. This will include a new heroine you can recruit and a bunch of new story content. There are two sex scenes for the new heroine and loads of new, fun content. This will also be the first section to have a branching path where you can choose between supporting two factions vying for the control of Sayda. That's something else people have been asking me for for a while.

The initial beta test will probably be late this month or early next month. It'll be a week long (unless I've truly messed something up), and once it is done I'll provide a general release.

The support I've had from my fans, donators, and artists has been monumental. I can only hope that the content I produce lives up to the trust you've placed in me. I'll continue to give you regular updates and from now on, I'll make sure there's at least an update every Monday.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Initial Extras Chosen

Well I let the poll go a little longer than normal but the Cowgirl farm has definitely been in the lead for a good while now. It's a slight lead, but it IS in the lead. The question remains of whether it should be three images with one girl or one image with three. I'll have a new poll up for that soon.

The Slave Individual and preggo scenes were very nearly as popular all through voting though. Since I have enough, I'm going to do both.

I'll put out the more substantial update tomorrow.

My sincerest thanks to those individuals who have recently donated large sums. Without people like you, this project would not have gotten nearly this far. You know who you are, and you're great people. Any amount is wonderful, but you've truly gone above and beyond.

And I've been meaning to say this. For those of you who cannot donate because you don't have money but still want to help out, you CAN still help the project. Please post threads on h-forums about the project and tell friends about it. I don't donate as much time promoting the game as I could on forums and talking with other content creators because I'd rather work on the game. But if you do it it would help me to get more fans who appreciate the content. You can also talk to your favorite artists and let them know about the project (though you should be realistic about my budget - I'll never hire Dr.Graveling for instance because his art is over TWICE my budget for images) - or, if you are artistically inclined, make some fanart or fanfiction. I like both.

I'll continue to promote the project on my own, make new threads and talk to new artists. I have a wonderful group working for me now but I am always happy to get more talented people on the team. But if you do want to help, I'm more than happy to let you help promote the project and alert artists to the existence of Overwhored.

Thanks, everyone!