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Greg Rice

Production Update #5: A Production Update!

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When it comes time to do the final Voice Work will you be casting through the forums as well? I'll love the chance to audition.

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Hey Greg,

I am a PM as well; mostly on large MM corporate projects. A lot of focus, in relation to DFA, is on creative. But I would love a section on your take on PM / PMO activities at DF. Project management is essential, but not as sexy as art, story or code. Any chance you can share the love from a PM side of things? How do you cope with scope creep, budgets, scheduling, sprints, methodologies? Waterfail (yeah, I said it; I just made that up, too) versus Agile. etc. Shine, brother! Tell us your adventure story! Business/Marketing/Publisher relation perspectives would also be gold. But, of course, only if you want to. I would love to hear about things from your perspective, sir.

With deepest admiration and respect,

Jason, CSM

I'm not a PM, but I do think that aspect is really important, especially for those of us working our way into the industry.

The SMU Guildhall (where I'm working on my MA) recently added a production specialization, but up til now, they've made due with current students to slide into those production roles.

I can't help but think that most smaller studios are relegated to the same sort of compromise: Use one of the skilled people as a hybrid producer.

The more insight into that aspect the better--especially when it comes to episodes like #7, where many gamers had to see the raw reality of overscope, resource scarcity, and how those two things have to be beaten into submission to release a product.

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Thanks for the update Greg!

Hey Greg,

I am a PM as well; mostly on large MM corporate projects. A lot of focus, in relation to DFA, is on creative. But I would love a section on your take on PM / PMO activities at DF. Project management is essential, but not as sexy as art, story or code. Any chance you can share the love from a PM side of things? How do you cope with scope creep, budgets, scheduling, sprints, methodologies? Waterfail (yeah, I said it; I just made that up, too) versus Agile. etc. Shine, brother! Tell us your adventure story! Business/Marketing/Publisher relation perspectives would also be gold. But, of course, only if you want to. I would love to hear about things from your perspective, sir.

With deepest admiration and respect,

Jason, CSM

I'm not a PM, but I do think that aspect is really important, especially for those of us working our way into the industry.

The SMU Guildhall (where I'm working on my MA) recently added a production specialization, but up til now, they've made due with current students to slide into those production roles.

I can't help but think that most smaller studios are relegated to the same sort of compromise: Use one of the skilled people as a hybrid producer.

The more insight into that aspect the better--especially when it comes to episodes like #7, where many gamers had to see the raw reality of overscope, resource scarcity, and how those two things have to be beaten into submission to release a product.

I'm also quite interested in this

Maybe I'm greedy, I would love to hear more about the PM, VO, scoring, programming and everything else.

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It's been a long time since I looked at the platforms, so can somebody give me a quick run down of all the devices in that picture? One of them looked like the Blackberry Playbook, but that's not Android. (Just got one recently, so I was hoping that just maybe a version of that was being made on the side.)

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@ChrisRemo This whole publishing platforms discussion got me curious. Didn't nintendo say they made the Wiiu Shop more indy friendly? Since you already have Cave on that one i guess you would know by now. Is it now less costly and complicated to get games on Wiiu than on other consoles? and so is it more likely that you make a Wiiu port? Cause a wiiu version would definitely rock. There aren't enough good games out for that platform. Only the cave

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@ChrisRemo This whole publishing platforms discussion got me curious. Didn't nintendo say they made the Wiiu Shop more indy friendly? Since you already have Cave on that one i guess you would know by now. Is it now less costly and complicated to get games on Wiiu than on other consoles? and so is it more likely that you make a Wiiu port? Cause a wiiu version would definitely rock. There aren't enough good games out for that platform. Only the cave

Yes, Nintendo's indie policies are much improved on Wii U; it's a huge step up over past Nintendo consoles, and currently friendlier than Sony and Microsoft's as well. (You can issue patches without paying tens of thousands of dollars, for example.) You still do need development kits, which are a lot more expensive than retail units. It's true that we developed The Cave for Wii U, which is great because it gives us experience on the platform, but it's not as clear-cut as you might think on either the development or business side. On the dev side, The Cave is our Buddha engine, whereas Reds is our Moai-based engine, so we'd basically have to start over in terms of the port, and whenever you need a bunch of engine-level engineering work, that's real budget. By contrast, Moai is designed from the start for PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android. We're adding a lot of features to the engine so we still have to do a lot of compatibility work ourselves, but adding a brand new console platform is a whole different story. And on the business side, Sega was the publisher of The Cave on Wii U, not us, so we probably don't have access to those dev kits indefinitely and would need to acquire our own, which is another expense.

None of this is to say it's impossible; but we're already targeting a LOT of platforms right now, and a new console platform would be more expensive and complicated than any of those. So it's just not something we can commit to right now.

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Nice to see activity in the forums again xDD

Thanks for update DF Greg!

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Sweet, I don't know if you guys are looking to release it on iOS or not, but I would happily buy a second copy on that to help support you guys after the game's release(you know, the whole getting a profit from the game part).

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Sweet, I don't know if you guys are looking to release it on iOS or not, but I would happily buy a second copy on that to help support you guys after the game's release(you know, the whole getting a profit from the game part).

iOS was one of the platforms confirmed in the Kickstarter, so we're definitely doing it!

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Sweet, I don't know if you guys are looking to release it on iOS or not, but I would happily buy a second copy on that to help support you guys after the game's release(you know, the whole getting a profit from the game part).

iOS was one of the platforms confirmed in the Kickstarter, so we're definitely doing it!

Sweet! I guess I missed that somewhere along the line, will be buying a second copy then.

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Since the timeframe and the budget are longer, how does this affect 2PP? Do they get an expanded and extended budget as well?

Also, when does their participation end? Do the docs stop when the game ships, or will we see an episode after its been on the market for a while to see critical and sales reactions?

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Whole lotta green showing up which is really exciting to see! Getting excited to see what you guys have in store for us!

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Thanks for the update Greg!
Hey Greg,

I am a PM as well; mostly on large MM corporate projects. A lot of focus, in relation to DFA, is on creative. But I would love a section on your take on PM / PMO activities at DF. Project management is essential, but not as sexy as art, story or code. Any chance you can share the love from a PM side of things? How do you cope with scope creep, budgets, scheduling, sprints, methodologies? Waterfail (yeah, I said it; I just made that up, too) versus Agile. etc. Shine, brother! Tell us your adventure story! Business/Marketing/Publisher relation perspectives would also be gold. But, of course, only if you want to. I would love to hear about things from your perspective, sir.

With deepest admiration and respect,

Jason, CSM

I'm not a PM, but I do think that aspect is really important, especially for those of us working our way into the industry.

The SMU Guildhall (where I'm working on my MA) recently added a production specialization, but up til now, they've made due with current students to slide into those production roles.

I can't help but think that most smaller studios are relegated to the same sort of compromise: Use one of the skilled people as a hybrid producer.

The more insight into that aspect the better--especially when it comes to episodes like #7, where many gamers had to see the raw reality of overscope, resource scarcity, and how those two things have to be beaten into submission to release a product.

I'm also quite interested in this

Maybe I'm greedy, I would love to hear more about the PM, VO, scoring, programming and everything else.

That's definitely a great idea. I completely agree.

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While catching up on the project updates, I've noticed something odd in the version of this post on the backer pages. Some occurrences of "Cloud Colony" had been replaced by "my Butt Colony". To quote (emphasis by me):

However, art, VFX, programming, writing, and design in my Butt Colony are of a shippable quality!
We took a section of his story that is similar in size and scope to my Butt Colony all the way to Alpha. Meanwhile, a handful of folks moved ahead to pre-production work on both Space Boy’s second section of the game and Sacrifice Girl’s opening section leading up to my Butt Colony.

Is this some kind of insider joke I missed? If not, I'm curious where this came from.

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While catching up on the project updates, I've noticed something odd in the version of this post on the backer pages. Some occurrences of "Cloud Colony" had been replaced by "my Butt Colony". To quote (emphasis by me):

....

Is this some kind of insider joke I missed? If not, I'm curious where this came from.

Hahaha, nice find! That sounds like a great 'damn you autocorrect' :). Or have you been working on the Cloud Colony for too long?

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While catching up on the project updates, I've noticed something odd in the version of this post on the backer pages. Some occurrences of "Cloud Colony" had been replaced by "my Butt Colony". To quote (emphasis by me):
However, art, VFX, programming, writing, and design in my Butt Colony are of a shippable quality!
We took a section of his story that is similar in size and scope to my Butt Colony all the way to Alpha. Meanwhile, a handful of folks moved ahead to pre-production work on both Space Boy’s second section of the game and Sacrifice Girl’s opening section leading up to my Butt Colony.

Is this some kind of insider joke I missed? If not, I'm curious where this came from.

Oh man. This is a weird one.

I had been using a Chrome plug-in called "Cloud to Butt" that takes random instances of the phrase "the cloud" and replaces it with "my butt" -- and this came and bit me in the cloud when I was transferring all the forum posts over to the new content system.

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Who doesn't love a butt colony. Can't wait to see the finished one.

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Oh man. This is a weird one.

I had been using a Chrome plug-in called "Cloud to Butt" that takes random instances of the phrase "the cloud" and replaces it with "my butt" -- and this came and bit me in the cloud when I was transferring all the forum posts over to the new content system.

That is awesome. I know what Chrome extension I'm installing in people's browsers at work next time they leave their computers unlocked.

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