Monthly Update 
This is the twenty-second in a series of monthly updates we'll be posting on the last Saturday of every month (JST) until Tokyo Dark's release. If you want to follow development in more detail and you are an [ Access Pack ] + backer remember to drop into the Tokyo Dark backer's forum for our weekly updates every Saturday. If weekly and monthly updates aren't quite enough, you can follow us on Twitter or Facebook for your midweek Cherrymochi fix.
First a quick note to assure you all that nothing has changed with Tokyo Dark's development following our April 1st update. Even if you did not find it amusing, we hope that at the very least the update demonstrated our understanding of psychological horror.
[ Updated 2017 development trailer ]
To kick things off nicely this month here is an updated version of our development trailer:
The game is really starting to come together, we think the fully animated sequences and new dynamic CGs make a huge difference to the quality of the experience and hope you all agree!
[ Production Schedule ]
Over the next few weeks we'll be wrapping up work on the first polish pass for the base game. (Woohooo!) Here is an overview of what will be going on behind the scenes over the coming months:
- Mid May - Deliver complete base game to Square Enix Collective for initial play-testing and feedback.
As we near the end of production we'll be working closer with the SEC team as they'll help us with publishing and release services that would otherwise be difficult for a small studio like us to access
While SEC and partners work on developing marketing plans / launch assets and offering us advice on any changes that might improve the game, we'll be working on adding NG+ content and the final round of polish.
After this initial feedback is complete and we've added the final assets to NG+, we'll begin a period of quality assurance cycles with SEC where we'll hunt down any bugs and issues that have slipped past our polish passes and internal bug testing.
At the same time we'll be adding features like Steam Achievements / Steam Trading Cards and working towards the gold build.
When all parties agree everything is 100% on course for awesome we'll announce the release date.
[ Tokyo Indie Fest & Bitsummit ]
Want to play the latest build of Tokyo Dark but don't want to wait until release? Want to stand next to the team and tap your watch while raising an eyebrow? (eeb!) Want to cheer us on as we head towards the finish line? (yay!) Want to see if we have any awesome Tokyo Dark swag to give away? (Spoiler. We do) Are you in Japan in May?
[ Behind the scenes ]
Though we introduced ourselves right at the start of this journey, I thought it would be nice to do a quick little recap of who we are. Cherrymochi is a small studio co-run by husband and wife Jon and Maho based in Kamakura, south of Tokyo. Jon (hi!) writes these updates, designs, programs, creates our 3D art and is responsible for building our games. Maho also designs, writes the Japanese drafts, keeps Cherrymochi running, organizes pretty much everything and generally keeps the whole ship afloat.
But Tokyo Dark would be impossible to make alone so we work with a small team of amazing freelancers whose passion and hard work have made Tokyo Dark possible.
In our core team Moochirin creates all our gorgeous 2D art, Matt uses his twisted sonic alchemy to create our audio design and music, Tedra dashes around doing 110 different jobs on Tokyo Dark from managing websites to editing re-writes, creating bug testing systems, helping with translations to running our booths at events (phew!). This month our writer Chris Krubeck wrote a short piece on how and why he started working with us. Hope you enjoy it!
This is Chris, the English Language Co-Writer for Tokyo Dark. I handle a multitude of writing tasks for the game including crafting new scenarios, creating characters, polishing existing scenes, fleshing out the game’s lore and backstory, and generally trying my best to make the world of Tokyo Dark feel as engaging as possible.
My path in the arts has been gratifyingly twisty. In my late teens I moved from Colorado to the UK where I started seriously pursuing writing and film production after graduating with a degree in Film from Falmouth University. Sadly I did not become a world-famous director at the age of 23 like I had planned. Despite this setback, it allowed me to pursue another dream I’d had since high school of living and working in Japan.
I lived in Kichijoji in Tokyo for a little over three years, where I fell in love with the culture, the food, and the general uniqueness that is life in Japan. While in Tokyo, I was lucky enough to meet someone at a Muay Thai gym who was starting up a production company and was asked to help write scripts, produce and work on several creative projects. Throughout my time in Japan I continued to develop original story ideas, inspired and motivated by my experiences of immersion into the culture of Tokyo. I became particularly interested in the extreme contrasts I saw in Tokyo’s city life, which I was excited to reflect on while writing Tokyo Dark.
Coming to work on Tokyo Dark was done through an equally convoluted route. You might imagine that Jon and I met as fellow creatives in a trendy café in Tokyo, discussing how to channel the social malaise into art. In actuality we met when Jon invited my girlfriend and I to fill the final two spots of the six player Game of Thrones: The Board Game, where we proceeded to brutally backstab each other within about an hour of meeting. We’ve been friends ever since.
Slowly but surely through discussing our mutual love of movies, books, anime, and of course, video games, we found similarities in the stories and characters that resonated with us. When Jon and Maho told me they were going to start working full time on Tokyo Dark, I offered to help any way I could on the early, concept builds of the game. I’ve been lucky enough to be involved with Tokyo Dark since the start.
Although I’ve moved back to America to pursue other creative projects, Tokyo still holds a special place in my heart and I would love to live there again someday. During my time working on Tokyo Dark, we've written more than 60,000 words for the game, which is practically the length of a novel, and the most I’ve written for any single project. Writing for a video game has been a great way to completely immerse myself in the characters and world in a way that I don’t often feel with other projects and I look forward to working on more games in the future.
That's all for now.
Hope you all have a great month!
We'll be back on Saturday 27th May with our next monthly update.