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A point and click-game made of real paper, about a parent who accidentally kills his son Viggo. This game is about the aftermath.
A point and click-game made of real paper, about a parent who accidentally kills his son Viggo. This game is about the aftermath.
908 backers pledged $21,368 to help bring this project to life.

Changes

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Hello, everyone!

We’ve been hard at work on the game, but seeing as it’s been a while since we posted a substantive update, we thought we’d fill you in on the newest development.

After a lot of testing and other time spent on the game, we’ve reached a pretty important decision which we think is going to speed up progress on the project: we're changing engines.

We’ve been working with Unity for the past two years, and while it gives us the ability to put 3­D characters and dynamic lighting in the game, it’s a huge time sink in terms of getting scenes to look the way we want them, fighting a never­ending list of bugs, and so on. The pace with Unity is simply too slow, which is why we’re returning to Visionaire Studio, the engine used to develop Viggo originally.

”But wait!” you say. ”Does this mean you’re starting all over?” It’s a legitimate question, and thankfully the answer is a hard ”no”. Changing engines doesn’t affect the game or the progress as much as one might think; most of the time we’ve spent thus far in the project cycle has been put toward producing in­game assets (background settings, stopmotion animations, etc.), and the vast majority of those will still be usable in the new engine. Basically, we’ll be plugging all of our shiny, existing assets into a framework that we know works well for 2­D adventure games and isn’t riddled with bugs.

Unfortunately, we will be losing the dynamic lighting and 3­D look of the game, which will be replaced with 2­D characters extracted from the 3­D models we created. While this is a sad loss (we did like the feel of the recent trailer), using an engine made specifically for 2­D adventure games is going to make the pipeline A LOT smoother. We’ll spent considerably less time coding, fixing bugs, and polishing 3­D animations, which means we’ll be able to focus on the feel of the game and progress more quickly than we would with Unity. 

We truly believe this is the best decision for the pipeline, story, and overall vision of A Song for Viggo.

We hope that you're still with us, and you all have a good weekend!  
Team Viggo

Comments

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    1. SaintandSimon Creator on September 27, 2016

      Toby: Thanks, we try our hardest to make the project as good as it can even if all projects comes into difficult phases every now and then. :). I think that Visionaire might implement normalmaps later on, so that will make the lighting more dynamic again if thats the case (lets hope so). I'll write down your name, future collaborations are always fun!

      Will: Thanks, we understand your disappointment, but we hope to learn from our mistakes, and we also hope that the core vision gets even clearer in the game now that the pipeline is smoother. And of course the project will be completed. :)

    2. Toby Humphrey on September 27, 2016

      Sorry to hear of your difficulties, I'm still glad to be a backer of this game and look forward to the final result.

      Maybe you'll be able to implement a 3D game in the future, learning from this process. I'd happily collaborate with you on any future 3D endeavours!

      Keep up the good work,,

      Toby.

    3. Will O'Neill
      Superbacker
      on September 21, 2016

      Hey there,

      This is disappointing, but I hope that this engine change will make the difference you need to bring this project to completion. It has been some time.

      Good luck!

    4. SaintandSimon Creator on September 19, 2016

      Hi Gleen,

      We totally understand that you're disappointed, we're also sad that the dynamic lights didnt work out (or more so, it took quite a lot of time to make it look decent with 3D-characters).

      There are several other ways to make it look lit (not in the same way since that requires 3D meshes) but aside from general colored tints (which is kind of standard in 2D-adventures) , Visionaire seems to support normalmaps so we might also experiment with that. But we're glad that you support us in the decision, and we are doing our best to make the vision of the project as clear as possible. :), and hopefully it should still look a lot better than the original alpha-demo-trailer.

      Thanks for the input by the way, its really nice to hear all kind of views on the matter.

    5. Missing avatar

      Glenn McMath on September 18, 2016

      I'm not going to lie, this is a little disappointing to hear. I really liked the real time lighting on character models that was showcased in the latest trailer. As gorgeous and impressive as your earlier efforts were, the characters never really felt grounded in the scene because they were always lit differently than the backgrounds.
      I recognize that getting those effects to work probably took a huge amount of effort, and if you feel that effort was prohibitive to the overall quality of the game, I respect your decision. Ultimately I trust you to make the best decisions for the direction of the game, so I support you in this move. I just hope that you're able to work out some method of making the characters look like they're actually being lit in the scene, which seems like it would be difficult using a 2D engine.

    6. SaintandSimon Creator on September 13, 2016

      Hi Michael!

      It was not as much as it was the engine that was buggy, but the extensive need of coding to make it work for our project (3D models walking around in a 2D image, while walking around in invisible 3D-meshes was kinda messy and it kind took more effort than we wanted to make it look good). Our programmer did an amazing job, but it was not too smooth to make cutscenes and the pipeline could have been smoother, so thats why we're chosing Visionaire instead, made especially for these type of games. :), but of course, if it's something strange with the framework itself (Unity or Visionaire), then we ask for help. We've experienced that Unity has great people supporting people asking questions.

    7. Michael Alan Herrera on September 13, 2016

      As a backer, I'd be interested to know if you reached out to the people at Unity to help you resolve the problems you were having with their engine.

    8. SaintandSimon Creator on September 13, 2016

      It is a bit challenging, but yes, it sounds a lot more difficult than it is - all the assets we've made/all the work, is going into the engine - and building cutscenes are way more efficient than before, which gives us more time in the end to focustest it. So it is only good news for the project we believe. :)

    9. Christoph Zürcher on September 13, 2016

      Thanks for the update. Glad to hear that you seem to cope well with the engine change - it really does sound like a daunting challenge.