Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Blog post #19: End of the year is dawning to all of us.

It's been a while, but there's more than just alpha demo to be happy about this fall. And more to now that we have managed to squeeze out the alpha demo and we found out a lot of things that didn’t work and things that did work. For the first, it was going to be demo, but we ended up making an alpha, which was way better for our small team and we get to test some ideas and really iterate.  
Like Harkness' movement, which is now partially free and partially 2D, and then we faced into problem about the walls. And now Harkness can be seen through some walls. So it's a nice silhouette. Glad we made some rework with Harkness' design and overall shape.

We were happy to be part of this year's Gyostage here in Kuopio. And we get to really try out VR so that was great. Wish we have something more to show and playtest the next year, but overall, it was great.

Nordic Game Week / Peliviikko
Also, we were invited to take part in Kuopio Peliviikko that is part of Nordic Game Week (which in part is part of International Game Week. It's like the Inception, which is a good movie, you should watch it). 
But nevertheless, it was a great way to be part of local gaming culture and IGDA Kuopio is going to make more for the next year's events. We had plans to make the alpha demo for this event, but because some technical difficulties we barely made it, and even that was just a pre-alpha we reworked for wider playtest.

Our graphic team making last adjustments to the alpha demo.

We get to see Kuopio based video game cover band Sinfinian on stage and that was cool.

Part of our team, @olenbluu to be exact took part in Junction 2017 and it was a blast. 

'I was pretty much on new territory because I ended up doing more graphic than I have ever done to any playable demo of ours. It was truly a learning experience for me and I hope I get to do more work with Blender and Krita and maybe be more use for our graphical designer @dicenete in future projects.'

If you're interested the prototype made in Junction and full team credits can be found from

And of course Finland celebrated 100years of Independence. Our local IGDA had pre-holiday party and so many things happened this year that it’s impossible to even start listing everything great in this year for us.

Holidays are still coming (you cannot stop them) and we're drafting the schedule again, learned a lot from this alpha demo phase (we changed some of the movement choices and made some tweaks on control, like mentioned) but nevertheless we're happy with the way things are going at this rate and most of all, we are all feeling confident about Peace Quarter being the game we are proud to make.

Happy holidays from all of Rx3 Team

_Rx3 Team

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Post #18: Water Wonderlab Game Jam

Water Wonderlab Game Jam was held in last weekend and we're glad that we were able to squeeze some time to take part of it. It was again a great experience to see all local game devs making games and we were even able to take part in some of their process.
It's always great to be able to make a working game the whole team found fun to make and I think we managed to make something that everyone enjoyed.

And that's how we ended up doing 

Game itself isn’t playable on any sharing site, but if you’re interested, go and ask us on twitter or facebook (or here, but that’s a bit given) and we'll see what we can do. Of course game itself is a small prototype of a 2D sidescroller beat ‘em up, but we’re really proud to be able to make a working game that we’re can present and if we ever feel like it, we could easily (or we think we could) make. So as a prototype making event Game Jam is an experience we appreciate.

We learned a lot from 2D graphic use in Unity and how to make sprites for it. And it turned out to be far more easier than we thought.

Overall, we have learned a lot of planning ahead in these events and it’s starting to seem to be the one crucial thing to do when you do a Game Jam. Plan ahead. Sunday is always sooner than you think and while everything feels okay, always, always make plan B’s. We didn’t really need them this time, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
 But with this, we can already say we have learned a lot from taking part of these events and are going to continue to be in them to learn more. 

We participated in local game jam with additional talent. Like we usually do, because it’s a great way to broaden your horizon.
Music was provided Pauli Ondruska, who makes our sound effects for Peace Quarter so we have loved to work with him. He also made our music and sounds at the last Game Jam which we participated. You can find him from SoundCloud, but also from YouTube.
Additional graphics were by Lukki and Tia.
Thank you all.

_Rx3 Team

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Blog post #17; Teaser trailer special.

Harkness in harm's way.

Teaser trailer for the upcoming adventure game. We're so proud to finally be able to bring it to public and show you what we have been doing all in the silence.

And now we have the teaser trailer ready for you.

And we want to thank everybody involved.

There's no backing out now.

_ Rx3 Team

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Blog post #16: Debug.Log(“Hello World”);

Ok, this is my first entry here and I hopefully have some time to write more about coding and the development side of Peace Quarter.

As you may have noticed if you are a longtime follower (hopefully there are longtime followers) we develop our games with Unity. I handle the developing and coding side so our creative members can focus on that – being creative - and get their awesome work come to life in our game world.

We have come long way understanding how to work as a team and that really has its marks in my work as well. I used to mainly code stuff that needed to be switched from code if someone wanted to alter the way things work. This approach can be seen in earlier mobile game “Gemfall Workforce Inc – Harkness’ shift” and especially updating it. Everything we want to change comes back at me! That is bad for the team because they necessarily can’t get forward and time being quite the rare asset it slows down the development. It even might lead to some nighttime coding sessions to get the project at speed again.

So, to tackle this “lesson learned” I now develop assets for the team to use the Unity’s editor to modify key components. Development of these “tools” may be little slower but it keeps all team members at pace. You could think almost as the most valuable thing for me to do is try to reduce my work (Am I making myself unemployed?). Of course, there still are some things you can only change at code level but usually, they are bigger issues that we have noticed. I’d say developing games is constant learning. I would say my skills with Unity, C#, and programming, in general, have increased multiple times in a quite short time. One reason of course also be that as a small team the area of everyone is huge. That leads to a very versatile skill set that is useful. 

Another very good experience for team work was participating in game jams. There’s nothing like getting the whole team sitting at the same table and discussing. The feedback is instant and usually, the project is on fire (not literally!) at those times. This is the main reason we set up our office. We have a large table – ok table made from 4 tables and a book self – where we all sit and usually do our own parts. But the time we get pieces together we can all witness them first hand. 
It’s also very good that we as a starting indie team have finished some smaller projects and thus have seen the complete life-cycle of smaller game projects. If we had gone along and started Peace Quarter full steam without completing any other projects I think we wouldn’t even get this far. We also do some side projects with web sites and of course, small game prototypes for later use and I would encourage all starting programmers to first learn to finish stuff – small stuff at first – and then just start writing bigger games, programs, websites etc. You gotta start small you know.

Also for the guys and gals just starting to learn to program, it really isn’t hard it just takes time and willing to learn! There isn’t a better time to start than now. There are numerous tutorials online and game engines have become available for anyone to make their own games!

- Rx3 Team (Ville Räsänen, coding and programming.)

Friday, July 21, 2017

Blog Post #15: Landing page ready

We're proud to let you all know that we got our landing page ready for Peace Quarter and we can finally go public with it. Last weeks have been constant crunching, mostly by our coding team, which, as we are small, is basically just one person. But we're so proud. For our landing page and for our coder. Thank you. She also did all the graphic for the site so she has done an amazing job. So feel free to stop by her DeviantArt and see her other artwork there. Or see her online portfolio here.

We got our games landing page ready which means that backing out from the development is now harder. We have already found new things for our games lead programmer to tackle, and basically, he leads himself so...

Like our puzzle system which we have reworked and reworked multiple times. Now, our game designer has settled for puzzle idea(s). Again, fancy title, but means the person who comes up with things that player does in the game. Pretty much one does thing about stuff like 'where does the player go from here', 'what player needs to do in order to progress' and 'is this any fun to play'.

For our landing page, we also got new promo art. GemFall Workforce Inc recruiting poster. You can enjoy it here, but also go see it on the landing page in its natural habitat.

GemFall Workforce Inc art poster is made for our website and it's in-game poster for GemFall Workforce for recruiting. Art and poster style is influenced by NASA mars project posters. 

And remember to pop by Peace Quarter's landing page and drop us a line in our social media if you fancy that.

_Rx3 Team

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Blog Post #14: New office, new team member and new Harkness

We finally got our foot in the solid ground (almost) and had ourselves an office space. Basically a second-floor room from one of our team mates home. We’re joking all the time that we’re like reversed basement developers, attic developers. But one cannot argue that it’s easier to do stuff when all of us can locate in the same space for couple of hours in a day. We also got a new member for our team, he’s going do our sound effects, all those WHIP, CRASH, BUM and PHAU noises we need. Which is pretty neat.

If interested, you should check both of our sound and music talents from they respective channels from soundcloud:

Pauli Ondruska

Adam Al-Sawad

We have also been talking about making the landing page for the game, teaser and demo. Probably we’re going to make an early gameplay teaser or something for the landing page when it will initially launch. We earmarked 21th this month for it, but like always life happens when you least expect it. Probably we crunch again in the last night. With Oh My Kitties we really tried to avoid it, but ended up doing the crunch anyway.

Harknes also got redesign and new 3D model.

"At first I wanted to find the shape for hybrids in general - even though NPC hybrids are way different than Harkness, they now share the same basic shape. After that I made the unique silhouette for Harkness that made him Harkness." - Dicenete 

"This is the first silhouette i made for Harkness, and as you can see, it is more MEH than the one in redesign. This one doesn't have the basic shapes" - Dicenete

At the moment we’re doing groundwork and doing necessary code and new graphics for levels which means that we’re on our way with the game environment building. Things are again happening so fast for the development that it feels pretty optimistic that we get the game ready and it will look good. And it’s a great feeling to have.

Our graphic artist started playing FFXV, because narrative writer made her.

_Rx3 Team

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Blog Post #13: New tech demo plan

How we must make hard cuts to designs and ideas we love. Not only in Peace Quarter, but also in other projects too. But especially in Peace Quarter. We would love to fill it with everything we love and thought in the first place.

But, not everything is usable or even clever to put in your work. It may seem like it is the best thing ever, but like they say in writing, 'kill your darlings'. It doesn't necessary mean that the idea is bad, it just, you cannot do everything even if you like to do. Like, at the moment, our graphic designer is pretty convinced she will make new model for Harkness and visit Harkness design with new eyes.
But famous ‘kill your darlings’ example is closer than we would like to admit. We had this idea that Harkness would repair things along the way. He still does, but at that moment we thought we would introduce three key ways to repair, fix/build/connect. We had them all figured out. For what you would use them and how they would affect the surrounding world.

But that didn't even last for our first tech demo, we took those ideas away and instead left only repair.
In tech demo we had our core mechanics displayed. TSUP, MTV and teleports. (And in a note of tech demo we’re on our way to make a new tech demo, showcasing new Harkness model and little from the first playable level, Finite Horizon. You can follow for more news from here or from any of our social media, we tend to be happy we’re able to do the next tech demo.)

We were happy with all of the core mechanics we had in the first tech demo. But we decided to merge some of them together to make it more simpler and hopefully easier for players to grasp the idea. It’s always hard to start guessing how much too much or too little, and middle-ground is harder to find that you would think in the start. 

We see how good we did once the new tech demo is completed and we get some feedback.

_Rx3 Team

Monday, May 22, 2017

Blog post # 12: Health Game Jam May (fgj) edition

First and furthermost we kind a started Instagram to showcase between the scene work, we’re toning down selfies, but like graphic designs, concept work, graphic artist’s pictures when she has no ideas (at the moment) and more once we start working on Peace Quarter in full speed. Soon. Like really soon. In a week or two. Once we get our new “office” setup done. 

We had a great chance to make and held a workshop about game storytelling and narrative in general and visuals. Workshop was real fun to have and we learned much from our own work while making the workshop. And then there we had awesome conversations about game storytelling and then about visual design and how it shows to player. We also briefed Unity, but had no real chance to really dwell into the game making process on that end.  And because taking pictures of writing is a bit boring here's a some clothes designs for the workshop project we made. We chose to make a walking simulator to demo in the workshop and these are some of the concepts we had with us. 

Clothes design concepts.

Color chart for clothes. Which one would you choose?

Friday started Health Game Jam in Kuopio and our group made small dentistry game as it was health game jam. But then again, all games promote mental health when they are played for fun.Now that our whole team was on the jam we really get to see a fast game development process. It was really fun and from we might have learned a bit from our experience in last Global Game Jam and we were able to focus faster and realize our goals. Which was a good thing and if anyone is interested taking part in any kind of game jam, this is one thing you should try to apply to your work. 48-hours may seem long time in Friday, but it's a blink of an eye on Sunday.


Thanks to Lukki and Pauli for working with us on the jam game. See YouTube description for full credits. 

_Rx3 Team