We’re back again with another update for Buto! We’ve decided to more or less double the content in the demo and address some more kinks we saw in everyone’s let’s plays. This is (probably) going to be the final update to this version, unless there’s any issues that come up that need to be patched. From here on out, we’ll keep working on finishing the game and we’re aiming to release the full version by the end of February next year. Thanks for all the kind words, we’ll have a fantastic game for you all soon!
As always, you can download and play the game on our itch.io here!
– Gave villagers a purpose
– Added pockets to Buto’s cape
– Built some bridges
– Fertilized the grass
– Stabilized the camera
– Invited Lou to sunbathe
– Gave Joy a lift from the Land of Joy
– Invented fortoises
– Gave Buto memories and a continue button
– Had a weird dream
Making a game about bugs seems very fitting this week, as the majority of our work was to do with fixing them.
Each of us played through many many times and logged the issues and Marc got through the entire list, sometimes fixing the bugs as we were writing them down.
Over the weekend I also got some creative energy back and was able to paint up some UI assets! I still feel somewhat unhappy with the UI at this point but I will continue on it further until the end of the week’s showcase.
I quickly animated a Gorn run last minute as well, just to add a little juicey juice.
We pitched our game idea for the accelerator but unfortunately did not get it, however, we are planning on continuing development of Buto into the future. It does not stop here, hoo boy.
We’re coming close to the end of our gold build!
System wise, everything is all ready to go! But content wise, we still need to do a lot more polishing and we also have the occasional bug fixing. So much play testing.
The mini-game interaction is finally done and in the game! No spoilers, but when you interact with the object, the mini-game starts and once you complete it successfully, a hilarious animation plays out and I love it so much! Please look forward to it.
We’re making the finishing touches to the village and to the next scene where we get to meet Joy! It’s going to be a while, but I can’t wait to see all the other emotion characters and their environment.
We’ll be releasing our gold build this week to the public and we hope to get a ton of feedback so we can keep improving!
I had arranged to go to PAX months in advance, without knowing if we would be able to exhibit anything or not. Luckily, just before PAX, our game was in a really good place so I asked if we could be shown as well and we got put into the fold! So that was a nice surprise.
So I travelled to Melbourne the day before to have a day to adjust!
PAX itself was pretty amazing! So huge, and I was able to catch up with friends that I hadn’t seen in ages, and met a bunch of cool people, and play their games. Unfortunately, I caught the PAX “pox” and was out of commission for the rest of the week – and used the time to focus on different assignments. However, I did do some further bug testing and made Joy’s walkcycle.
We’re back again with a couple of quick fixes while we’re working on finishing the rest of chapter 1! A lot of this is from the feedback on all your let’s plays, minus the issues with the camera and the occasional freeze when interacting with something the first time. We’re working on those, but they’ll take a little longer I’m afraid.
– Markedly marked up market demarcations
– Added a little nip to put a telescope by port
– Added minor disappointments
– Told Buto off for walking into the flower river. He promised to not do it again.
– Built fences
– Daisychained cameras
– Gave the game a fresh coat of paint (Mac only)
You can grab the new version on our itch.io!
So in the lead up to Armageddon, I made a quick trailer showing off a lot of environment things, as at the time, our game wasn’t in a great state. Marc mocked up some business cards and I put it together and got them printed just before the weekend.
Marc and Anne manned the booth at Armageddon and noted some difficulties people would have with leaving the house at the start. After their day, Marc went home and made it REALLY obvious who to talk to, what to do, and where to go through dialogue. When I helped man the booth the day after, we noticed a huge improvement in the ability of people to leave the house and look around. Kids especially enjoyed exploring! So, we finally know we’re on the right track.
After submitting the trailer, we wrangled the game into shape and I made another gameplay trailer.
This week, our team had a huge discussion about the current state of our game and what we wanted by the submission date.
There isn’t a whole lot of programming for me to do, so I had a discussion with my team about what else I could do such as doing tons of play testing, adding more content and quality to the village and working on the optional story line and other little features.
For example, a nice little touch that I decided to add in was a small telescope in the port area of the village. One of the strong points of our game is the world and the aesthetic and I really wanted to emphasize that a bit more. For now, I’ve added in a dummy telescope that the player can interact with to move into a telescope view. In the future, maybe we’ll have it so that the player can examine points of interest while they’re using it. I was testing the idea at first then I presented it to Marc, who thought it was amazing. We’ll soon have a telescope model done and it’ll be added to multiple points in the game.
The deadline is coming up soon and I’m looking forward to seeing how everything adds up. We’ll continue to discuss the current state of our game and how we can move forward with it.
We needed Buto to be even more expressive! So, I got going on adding animations that match up with the audio.
I also spent a lot of the week writing out interactions between villagers, Buto and Peace. I went around and screenshotted areas in which there could be additional dialogue. I also helped with camera shot placement and design, and did some paintovers to illustrate how to show players where they need to go clearer.
Armageddon was amazing!
I headed to the convention early with another colleague of mine, who was showcasing his game in the morning. I had a chance to look around with others before our afternoon showcase. This was actually my first convention so everything was fascinating to me! I bought a couple of posters and other merchandise for my friends too.
Anyways, onto the showcasing. It was.. interesting. We got some feedback and we were able to analyze how people progressed through our game. We could see some difficulty and we could see why people were confused. Dialogue and events had to be more clear for the players and we noted down several changes we could make for a better play through experience.
For example, in the very first scene in Peace’s house, people would often get lost after examining the kitchen chest. The next objective after examining the chest is to talk to Peace, but this was not very clear in the game. We added in a single dialogue line that made it clear that you had to talk to Peace again, and it worked perfectly for our showcasing the next day.
What Anni saw from the players was drastically different to what I saw because of all the changes we made. We made everything very clear for the Monday showcasing so Anni rarely saw any struggle from the players.
This really opened my eyes again as to how invaluable play testing and feedback is.
We got to showcase Buto at Armageddon through the Media Design School booth, and we had a blast! A lot of people came through and played the game and it’s really starting to look like all our hard work is finally paying off with seeing people having fun with what we’ve made.
There’s still a very long way to go, but we’ve finally found a core game that’s really enjoyable and really works for us.