Serpent in the Staglands - All News
Wednesday - August 20, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - New Update
Whalenought Studios has posted a lengthty update on the games kickstarter page with information on the beta version, and included a new video with the update.
Pre-Beta and Beta Testing
As we prep the rest of the beta areas, we were hoping to get some help in the form of us sending out our original vertical slice, augmented with all the polish up to this point, to get a few folks thoughts on controls and layout. We’ll pick a few backers at random for this, so if you’re interested in playing around with mechanics, leave a comment letting us know and include the operating system you’re using. Much obliged in advance!
We know we said that the beta would be ready around end of summer, but we decided to re-arrange our timeline a bit and move some polishing and testing to before the beta, so that the game and it's many features would be fully functional and included. With this change, our testers would get the best representation of the game possible for testing the things we'd like them to and what they'd like to give feedback on. Primarily that would be skills, balance, and how many ways they can find to OP their party. This means we'll ultimately have less polish to do down the road than originally planned, and hopefully the beta delay won't affect the release plans by much.
We’ll also be doing a website update and prepping those previously mentioned forums so beta folks can have an easy point of discussion with us closer to the beta release date.
We have a lot more to show off as we get closer to that beta, including the new areas for the crystalized Emerald Metalis and icy bogs of Tratis Saltis, and more spells and skills. We just finished up a high-level portal spell where you can deposit creatures/people to a marked location if they run over it. Phasing a pack of wolves into the middle of a village is delightful. Needs testing.
Wednesday - August 06, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Blog Update
Whalenought Studios latest blog update for Serpent in the Staglands has more information about the HUD they talked about in the last kickstarter update.
The HUD Makes a Room
As we’ve recently reconfigured our camera to display the game at a particular pixel size, we had to update most of the UI and Menu art to accommodate the smaller space. We’re keeping all these designs functional for a minimum size resolution, so the end result will simply center align itself on its respective side of the screen as they get larger (allotting more game scene space). Fortunately the HUD functions identically to the original designs, so not much changed there besides ensuring button and text size differences were accommodated. Crude mock-ups to follow:
Since everything was a little cluttered in the original setup (Display/Menu HUD on bottom and Character HUD on right with time-stop button), we first wanted to see what it would look like if we just made the portraits tall, replaced them with the game feed, and kept the bottom as is. We also detached the movement/character buttons and added them to a top ‘name/health’ tool on top of the screen, potentially replacing the tooltip you’d get after hovering over an object or enemy.
Friday - July 25, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - UI, Settlers & Death
Whalenought Studioshas posted the next kickstarter update for Serpent in the Staglands. This time they talk about the new UI, settlers, and how death works.
UI, Settlers & Death
Hey backers! Since last month’s update we took some time to polish some of the visual elements for an easier beta play experience, added some more art and enemies, put character generation in, more eastern maps, have a nice auto-paused prompt system set up, and are getting back to implementing more skills/spells for testing. We wanted to do an update showing some of those and some new features.
Steam Greenlight & GOG
We’re doing well on Steam Greenlight, and just wanted to ask those who haven’t voted to help us out as we inch toward the finish line!
And as we said before we’ll be sending a refined build of the game off to GOG in the fall for their approval.
Read the link for the full article with images, and new videos.
Thursday - July 10, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Whips & Map
Whalenought Studios has a new development blog update for Serpent in the Staglands with new information on whips, and the games overworld map.
The overworld map has come a long way since our last one.
Monday - June 09, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Post-Funding Update
In the latest post-funding update for Serpent in the Staglands we get news on the games nobility, light system, town tunes,and a new armor poll.
Nobility, lights, town tunes and another armor poll!
Hello noble backers! We’ve been busy the last month cranking up development for the beta release later this summer. We’re on schedule and excited about all the new content and progress! We wanted to share some of the main things we've been working on lately.
The eastern districts of Orf’s Bridge, Emerald Metalis, and Tratis Saltis will be where the initial beta will take place, so we’ve been focusing on getting the content completed for these districts first. It's a pretty sizable area of the game. Because of the game’s open-ended nature, the beta won’t have an obvious endpoint, but will be more of an exploration with the first options of the primary story to uncover if you choose and are able to discover them. Like in Darklands, the gameplay experience involves uncovering the story via your own exploration, with the addition of actually having a goal and a few (uncertain) leads to begin with.
The first tier of all combat and spells will be available, and we are planning to include the second tier in for additional testing after the initial beta launch.
We wrote a dev blog post pertaining to some of the content additions we’ve been working on, and we also have some images below of some of the newer system/visual features, located in the first scene we showed from the Kickstarter video in Erlein’s temple. System wise, we’ve optimized saving and loading, finished off what was needed for the write-your-own-journal notes system, added in a great fog of war solution and some visual enhancements for environment art.
Moving forward we’re continuing to focus on dialogue content, level design, and scripting spells and skills.
Art has been and will continue to be a progression with map/area art and monster/people sprite sheets. We finished the latest poll-winner armor set (leather armor 1 of 2), and made some clips of it in action!
Poll #2Since you all made a great choice before, we wanted to follow up with another armor set poll! We’ll be whipping some more up later this month and we’d like your vote on a heavy armor set! There isn’t a system of knighthood in the Staglands, but some fighters favor heavier armor (more protection, less speed). The first one we designed is more of a chain-mail and plate-armored arm pieces, and this one we wanted to get in a suit of splint mail or a full metal cuirass to make it distinctive
Thursday - May 29, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Maps, Cloaks & Quests
Whalenought Studios has a new development blog update for Serpent in the Staglands with new information on the games maps, cloaks, and quests.
We’ve been hard at work the past few weeks and wanted to share some of the things we’ve been focusing on, mainly completing character sprite sheets, more creatures, the main world map, polishing the main systems and finishing the designs of landscapes, quests and characters that will fill the beta areas. We’re still steady on our scheduled path and aim to have the beta out by end of summer.
Monday - April 28, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Funded & New Update
Whalenought Studios has posted the first post-funding update for Serpent in the Staglands about the game being funded, and information on what to expect next.
We have gathered our party.
We’ve surpassed our goal by getting over 280% funded and having 1092 Backers through Kickstarter — this is an amazing feat and we can’t thank all of you enough! With our current PayPal backers our total funds raised for the project, as of this update, is $30,038.
We’re continuing to get back into normal development now that the campaign is over, and are excited to show you all more progress in future posts and videos! Please let us know if there’s anything or any system you’d like to know about in a future update that we can go into more detail in.
We’ll continue to keep you all posted with backer-only details and polls, but will also be doing regular development blog posts that will continue to feature high-level game mechanics, art progress, and skill demonstrations. As always, if anyone has suggestions or feedback, drop us a comment in the updates or our email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Though we intend to get back to a normal sleep schedule, we'll continue to try to get back to you as soon as we can.
Portrait level and Monster level backers: We’ll be contacting you in the near future to get your information and start brainstorming with you for your creatures or get your portraits going for the game!
Beta+ Backers: Once we’re further along and sending builds out, we’ll be updating the forums and asking our testers specifically to commune there for any discussion and getting in touch with us about the game’s development.
Thank you again everyone for supporting us through the entirety of the campaign, you’ve all been terrific and genuine sources of +20 Morale on a daily basis. Time to order a pallet drop of coffee.
Friday - April 25, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - The End of All Things
Whalenought Studios posted the next update for Serpent in the Staglands with a reminder the project is nearing its end, and shares some new game information.
Here at the end of all things & what lurks in the shadows of the Staglands
The last 2 days are upon us, and we’re thrilled with all of your support, encouragement, and excitement about Serpent in the Staglands. We’ve surpassed our goal and are over 200% funded — this is an amazing feat and it’s all thanks to you.
Some folks have asked about PayPal funds going towards the next stretch goal, and they definitely are. With a very impressive fundraiser from the prestigious magazine/forum RPG Codex, our PayPal sum (as of now) is sitting at $1803, so we're very close to the next stretch goal! We'll keep this number updated on the main page, and will keep the special rewards available for few months before making it pre-order only.
Tuesday - April 22, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Update#7, Combat
Whalenought Studios has posted the next update for Serpent in the Staglands with more information about the games map, monsters, and share a new combat video.
Maps, Monsters, and Combat Skills
THE LAST WEEK!
You all did a fantastic job helping us spread the word so far, and hopefully we can make it to the next stretch goal! We were interviewed recently by Cliqist and were asked some fun questions — check it out!
We wanted to give you all some more details on combat, and made another video previewing it like we did with Aptitudes. We are playing around with a lot of the art for effects and still putting in the skill images. We plan to showcase more of these skills in future updates and on our dev-blog as we are implementing them.
Monday - April 21, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Interview @ Cliqist
Cliqist interviews Joe Williams Of Whalenought Studios to discuss his successfully funded Kickstarter Serpent in the Staglands.
Cliqist : How does this game differ from your previous RPG, Isle of Bxnes? technically, artistically, and gameplay wise)
Joe Williams : Isle of Bxnes was an ARPG, it was designed with action in mind for its entirety. Serpent in the Staglands holds many situations that are able to be completely avoidable with an array of skills and conversation options. It’s also more about exploration of your mostly open world, whereas Isle of Bxnes focused on traveling island to island, conquering each challenge within, and just trying to survive. The art has been evolutionary for us, we’ve been able to increase the scope of it since we’re developing for the PC exclusively now. In a similar style to Isle of Bxnes, we’re hand-animating 8-directional isometric sprites.
Cliqist : So you’re not doing a game with ultra high end graphics supporting Oculus Rift. How can you hope to succeed?
Joe Williams : We’re just happy there remains an audience for the traditional CRPG that is interested in Serpent in the Staglands. We could have made the graphics different, but we stuck to our gut and what we thought fit the gameplay and atmosphere best, despite knowing that wouldn’t necessarily attract a mainstream audience. VR/Facebook adoption to be looked into.
Cliqist : Are you surprised by the success of your campaign?
Joe Williams : We were completely taken off guard when we were funded in just 4 days. Our community has been absolutely fantastic and shown a lot of excitement for the game and world. There have been a ton of great questions and discussions on core mechanics and we’re grateful we have such an awesome audience that knows their stuff.
Thursday - April 17, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Kickstarter Update# 6
Whalenought Studios has a new update for it's funded RPG Serpent in the Staglands with a new poll about leather armor, giant wolves, and what’s coming next.
Leather armor poll, giant wolves, and what’s coming next
Thanks everyone, we’re on our way to the first expansion stretch goal! We’ve been hard at work marketing and working on the game and wanted to update you on a few things.
We put up these videos of our new pathfinding and movement speed on the main page (we’re still tweaking it, but it shows a great deal of improvement from the previous videos and plays very smoothly). There are also some additional combat notifications when hovering above enemies. You’ll see more of that in the combat video, along with some new animations. We’re in the middle of finalizing some more combat skills we’d like to show off before that, and also get in a creature! We’re finishing up with implementing non-humanoids, with completely different skillsets, and are excited to show them in action. Up to the sword first: giant wolves!
Also, polls! In our timeline we’re in the stage of finishing art assets and skill/spell code implementation. You’ve seen a very basic armor set we’re using for some commoners, and we have 2 main types of armor for each armor grade (so there are 2 heavy plate mails, 2 chains, 2 leather, etc.) your characters can equip. This adds a nice amount of variation, but with customized colors for specific armors and cloak lining/interior/exterior colors they can really distinguish themselves. We’ll be showing off more of these armors, helmets, monsters and weapons in the future, and we’d like to get your feedback on which models you like the best. Each set is hand-drawn and animated with a few hundred frames, so if we are having trouble committing between some, we’re hoping you can help!
To get things started, we have some examples on the left, but on the right we need a secondary leather armor. The first leather armor we’ve chosen isn’t shown, but these three are all very different from it, and we’d like to see any of them in action. They are all wearing the same cloak and the colors are the same. A, B or C, if you have a preference, lets hear it in the comments!
Also, reminder for anyone who hasn’t, Steam Greenlight votes! If you’d like that as a platform for Serpent in the Staglands to be released on, we'll need as many votes as we can in the months to come.
Saturday - April 12, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Kickstarter Update #5
Whalenought Studios has another kickstarter update for Serpent in the Staglands with news about the second stretch goal, Steam Greenlight, and DRM-free distribution.
Second Stretch Goal Met! Also: DRM-free Distribution plans and Greenlight!
Hey Everyone! Second stretch goal has been met, and we’re on our way to the islands expansion! Fantastic!
We’re in the middle of getting some new content put together, but wanted to give a few announcements about the site, future community support, and distribution.
We will be submitting something to GOG in a beta stage of the game, as they need a few hours worth of gameplay to determine if it is going on their site, and we want to have something with a maximum amount of polish. Regardless if the game gets on there, we will use another network (and/or our own site) to provide DRM-free copies of the game.
In the meantime, to help with visibility and growing the community, we’ve just launched a Steam Greenlight campaign! The more backers we get to help give it the ol thumbs up the better — more visibility on there could mean more stretch goals and free expansions! We're not sure if it’s our audience, but we’ll see how it goes.
We’ve just added a forums section to the website where, post campaign, people can folks to give us ideas and feedback through development. It will also be a hub for those backers who chose to help with beta testing. We’ll be updating our website soon with the algorithms and designs of our stat system, and begin to showcase each spell/skill and their synergies, modifiers, procs, and visuals. This will house all the information that an adventurer of Vol might need to prep some build ideas!
Friday - April 11, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Update#4, Portraits
Whalenought Studios shares a few images about the games portraits in the next update for Serpent in the Staglands. Funding has slowed down though,but that is normal.
Hey everyone! At the time of this writing we have $300 to go until the second stretch goal! So awesome, thank you everyone for spreading the word and backing! We're doing fantastic!
We wanted to share with you some portraits that we've started on from some of the early $100 dollar backers. Hopefully it gives you an idea of the direction we're going in for the style of characters and races. Represented below are a Pasaaran, Lachovian, and Taratorith respectively.
Tuesday - April 08, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Kickstarter Update# 3
Whalenought Studios has posted the third update for their funded RPG Serpent in the Staglands with information about aptitudes, soul binding, and battle drums.
Here is the new video that goes along with the update.
Aptitudes, Soul Binding, and Battle Drums
We’re so excited to have almost reached our second stretch goal! Thank you so much everyone for spreading the word, we’ve had an awesome response during this campaign and hope we can keep it going with more frequent updates to come.
For this update we wanted to do a small demonstration of some of the dialogue and Aptitude options, so we put together a video of a tavern scene in Orf’s Bridge. (As a caveat: we’re in the middle of updating the pathfinding, so future videos will have much improved character navigation than what’s going on in this video.) We’re also just starting to put more art in from all of our placeholders, so this area is still very early along. We’ve increased the size of the text in menus after hearing they were difficult to read in the trailer.
Tuesday - April 01, 2014
RPGWatch - Serpent in the Staglands Q&A
They described the game as the following.
An isometric, RTWP, party-based CRPG set in the icy Staglands, where a trapped god and chosen company embark on a perilous quest.
The goal of the project was $10,000 and the game has already been funded in just four days. The next step is to get more money to expand the game, and add more areas.
You can check out the stretch goals in the following image.
I decided to get in contact with the developer. So here is a little chat where I asked a few questions by email. I hope you enjoy reading it, and decide to back the game.
Serpent in the Staglands - Update# 2, Funded!
Whalenought Studios has posted the second kickstarter update for Serpent in the Staglands with news the game has been completely funded four days.
You did it! Thank you so much everyone, Serpent in the Staglands has been funded in just 4 days!
We’re so excited with all the feedback and interesting questions thus far, and hope we can reach some of our exciting stretch goals! We’ve spent some time in the last couple days reorganizing the stretch goals based off the community feedback we’ve been getting, and were able to add in some of the content that we originally couldn’t fit in our scope.
The first few goals include a full soundtrack, which we have another example of in the works, and additional resources for more sounds and writing. Sailing, the Spirit Realm, the North region and Gladiator spire, and Underground cities are all parts of the free expansions for your characters to adventure through if we hit the later goals! Additionally, we’d have a massively expanded creature compendium, tons of new armor sets and party members. More info about all these on the main page!
Though we’ve been fairly slammed answers emails, questions and comments, we’re currently working on one of the two main settlements in Orf’s Bridge, a town of caravans and sellswords off the main northern road. We’ll have videos showing off more non-combat role playing elements in general here.
Also stay tuned for some polls, more details about the setting, and deeper combat explanations.
Thanks again everyone for making this possible!
Hannah & Joe
Monday - March 31, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - RPG Codex Interview
RPG CODEX: You are no strangers to indie games development, but Serpent in the Staglands marks your first foray into PC RPGs. What made you want to create this game, and at this time?
WHALENOUGHT: As huge crpg fans, this game is one we both have dreamed and started planning since the start of our studio. We both know our strengths lie in fantasy, adventure, and enticing narratives, and we’re confident that we’ll do the Staglands and the genre justice.
Graphically, I would have a hard time trying to imagine a game looking more like a cross between Darklands and Baldur's Gate than Serpent in the Staglands. However, you cite these games as influences for the game's innards rather than how it looks. Let's start with Darklands. What have you drawn from this game?
Thank you! That was absolutely what we were going for (and budgeted for). We’re keeping the art gritty and ground in some amount of realism.
Similar to their classless skill system, our system involves building your character by selecting any combat, spell or aptitude skills you’d like. This allows for a vast amount of customization and personality — rewarding creativity with your own custom build types. The Darklands combat is frenetic and pretty ruthless and we’re trying to capture that as well. Nothing was more satisfyingly demoralizing than failing to best some bandits and getting told they stole all your equipment and money and left you for dead. Their story scenes were the original inspiration for our Aptitude creation and uses outside combat.
Where do you see Whalenought heading with Serpent in the Staglands? It's a certainly a departure from your earlier, perhaps more accessible, mobile games. Are you looking to become the next Spiderweb Software or Basilisk Games, focusing on throwback CRPGs?
Our plan is to continue to explore the world of Vol (where the Staglands lies) in future games. We have a lot planned for other continents to explore and are excited to continue unraveling the lore in other campaigns.
A few recent CRPGs such as Wasteland 2, Dead State and UnderRail (and a gazillion other games) have Early Access versions for sale on Steam. In the Kickstarter, you mention your goal to release the game in Winter 2014, while also adding that you have no intentions of releasing anything but a finished and polished product. It sounds like you could be among the developers who are skeptical towards Early Access? What are your thoughts on this trend?
For Serpent in the Staglands, we’re going with a closed beta from our Kickstarter community. We want to reward them for supporting us early and are excited to have a group of people who are already enthusiastic about offering critique and suggestions.We’re aiming firstly to get on GoG, both because we love their site and to support the DRM-free distribution of games. We’ll be using Greenlight thereafter to also try to get on Steam! We think early access can certainly be beneficial for some developers, but believe our narrative-driven game is best experienced in it’s finished form for players to engross themselves in, so we will be sticking with closed beta testing. We’ll definitely be sharing updates throughout the rest of the development process though!
Sunday - March 30, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - Rewards & Paypal
Whalenought Studios has posted the first kickstarter update for Serpent in the Staglands with news about the game rewards, Paypal, the spirit realm, and spells.
Rewards, Paypal, the Spirit Realm & Spells.
First of all, we just want to thank everyone who has backed us. We’re overwhelmed by your generosity and are really excited about your excitement. Thank you for helping us make Serpent in the Staglands a reality, we're off to a fantastic start!
A Peak Into One of the Stretch Goals
An area that we’d love to be able to add into the game but is too large for our current scope is the Spirit Realm. The dwellers of the Spirit Realm have no interest in the doings of the Staglands, except when a brave but stupid mortal descends into one of their glowing chasms that are scattered throughout the land. Once inside the chasm, adventurers can explore a wealth of tunnels and caverns filled with oversized vegetation and vicious spirits like this fellow here. Unlike humanoids, monsters all have special skills or features that require different battle tactics. For instance, this spirit’s heart explodes on death and deals an uncomfortable amount of damage. He’s also not opposed to throwing his heart and other vitals like a grenade if desperate.
Although we originally wanted to keep our rewards as streamlined as possible, we’ve been hearing interest for some more interesting options, so we’re adding in two new rewards:
•$20: Previous reward, plus a digital copy of Erlein's Handbook, containing detailed maps, creature compendium, advice on secrets, riddles and lock knowledge, and pertinent history of the peninsula's political history. You'll be listed in the credits as a Sailor's Guild member.
•$75: All previous rewards, plus a hardcover copy of Erlein's Handbook, containing detailed maps, creature compendium, advice on secrets, riddles and lock knowledge, and pertinent history of the peninsula's political history. Wonderfully accessible reference guide while playing, full of beautifully rendered art, sketches and journal entries from Erlein. You'll be listed in the credits as a Cartographer's Guild member.
For those who can’t contribute via Kickstarter, we’ve set up paypal on our site with the same unlimited reward options. You can access it here: http://serpentinthestaglands.com/#preorder
Saturday - March 29, 2014
Serpent in the Staglands - A New Isometric RPG
Serpent in the Staglands is a new isometric party-based CRPG being developed by Whalenought Studios. They are asking for $10,000 on Kickstarter.
The good news is the game is already half-funded with twenty eight days left. Now here is the usual pitch video below, and a short description of the game.
The vision for Serpent in the Staglands is a mix of the addictive build customization of ARPGs and party control and role-playing elements of games like Baldur's Gate and Darklands. A throwback to cRPGs of the past with fresh new role playing designs and combat mechanics.
During your search as a god's mortal avatar, you'll plunge into the Stagland's deep combat and open world exploration. Skills, spells, and aptitudes can be individually customized for up to five different party members of your choosing. With an expansive variety of build options and branching paths to choose from, the game will offer significant personalization and replayability.
Information aboutSerpent in the Staglands
Developer: Whalenought Studios
Combat: Pausable Real-time
Play-time: 20-40 hours
Regions & platforms
· Platform: PC
· Expected at 2014-12-30
· Publisher: Unknown