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IGAVANIA (n): A gothic, exploration-focused action platformer, designed by one of the godfathers of the genre!
IGAVANIA (n): A gothic, exploration-focused action platformer, designed by one of the godfathers of the genre!
IGAVANIA (n): A gothic, exploration-focused action platformer, designed by one of the godfathers of the genre!
64,867 backers pledged $5,545,991 to help bring this project to life.

February Update: Miriam Turnaround and Donut Aftermath

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You may think it's no longer February—it's 85 degrees at Fangamer headquarters, so we're also skeptical—but it's unwise to rule anything out about February during a leap year. 

In any case, this update slipped to March 1 for a reason—last week we met with IGA, Mana, and Ben Judd to discuss the content for the next three updates, and it all sounds exciting. (Ben has seen all three and we haven't, which means that for now I am exactly as impatient for these updates as you are.) 

The first of the three updates they told us about comes today: A 360-degree turnaround of the latest Miriam character model. But I can't really show it to you until we go over last month's shader poll results.

The big winner, with more than half the votes—and twice as many as the next-most-popular option—was Background 3/Character 3, which you can get another look at in last month's update

Here's IGA himself on the feedback:

Like the shader poll results, we've decided on Character Shader 3 / Background Shader 3. Since the new character shader was so well received, we've also made a video of Miriam's 3D model, reflecting some of the most recent changes we've made. 

We thought cosplayers would especially like to see the back view of her design. The camera is the only thing that moves in the first half of the video; in the second, we've demonstrated the shader effect by moving the light source, as well. Please enjoy.

- IGA

And here's the video!

Thanks to IGA and the team for putting this together, and thanks to you guys for offering so much useful feedback as the development process continues. It's a pleasure to watch this game take shape with all of you. 

If you are not on the official Bloodstained Fan Forums, you're missing lots of things: A chance to talk about the latest Bloodstained news and speculate about the game with other fans, a direct line to ArtPlay via Mana, the community manager, and—as of last month—the rare opportunity to secretly ply IGA and the team at ArtPlay with donuts. 

If you missed it back in January, you can read the crowdfunded donuts saga thread on the forums. But Mana sent along a bonus photo for this month's update. (Also this message from IGA: "Make sure you tell everyone that we ate all the donuts. All. Of. Them.")

That's two successful crowdfunding campaigns in a row for IGA! He couldn't have commenced development on his new game, or eaten all those donuts, without you.

As ever, we're always on the look out for great art, music, and more from the Bloodstained community. If you've made something cool, make sure to tag it #Bloodstained or #Igavania so we see it!

suwancosplay, zerotalent15, dedlocke, MINERALBLU Photography, NGO Photography
suwancosplay, zerotalent15, dedlocke, MINERALBLU Photography, NGO Photography
by bj
by bj
by Kariya
by Kariya

This month's last word is especially meaningful to Steve, Fangamer's intrepid Ask IGA editor and reward organizer. Why? Because before every update since the end of the Kickstarter campaign he has reminded me to post the high-res version of Yuji Natsume's art for the Destructoid magazine cover. And every update since the end of the Kickstarter campaign I have forgotten about it. 

It ends here, Army of the Night. Today, right here in the Last Word, I am going to post a high-res version of Yuji Natsume's art for the Destructoid magazine cover. And Steve: I'm sorry for everything. 

It really is pretty great
It really is pretty great
Anthony James Frandsen, J. S., and 264 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Missing avatar

      Ross Richard on April 2, 2016

      Miriam looks perfect. I wouldn't even object if she were less clothed.

      Hate on me, I don't care.

    2. Missing avatar

      Iris on March 25, 2016

      Kindren pls go and stay go.
      3/3 is best.

    3. Kindren on March 19, 2016

      1/1 looked so much better. This is a horrible disappointment. Miriam has gone from looking cool and cute to overly garish. I suppose it doesn't really matter if the game play turns out to be solid, but man this could have been so much better.

    4. Kevin M. Brown on March 15, 2016

      Also the Miriam picture by Bj makes me wonder if the pre-game is going to be her as a wittle girl. ADURBLE

    5. Kevin M. Brown on March 15, 2016

      Regarding cleavage, I just always think to Dragon's Crown and everything just pales in comparison. She's a conservative approach in my opinion.

    6. Alderan on March 11, 2016

      I love how Miriam looks, she looks perfect! The detail on the stained glass flower on her back is something I didn't notice before, great job guys!

      Also, thank you for sharing that artwork, I've been waiting to get a better look at it since it was first shown. I'm very happy how the project is shaping up, keep up the great work everyone!

      As for the minority who are still nitpicking: allow me to remind you this is a fantasy game! it's not real! – Let us enjoy it for what it is.

    7. Missing avatar

      Kevin Chapman on March 11, 2016

      Staying on point, I really like the direction the game is going. Stick with the vision you have in mind, and don't listen to people like Marc trying to subtly guilt trip you into changing your artistic vision to spare perceived offense.

      Keep up the great work Team IGA!

    8. Missing avatar

      Kevin Chapman on March 11, 2016

      Good thing this is a video game based in fantasy and not real, Marc.

      Stop getting offended and "concerned" by anything involving breasts.

    9. Scars Unseen on March 11, 2016

      @Marc
      You may also notice that she's wearing a dress with large flowing ribbon, impractically asymmetric armor, a massive headband, and a ring(google "degloving" to see why that's a bad idea for physically active professions. warning: gore).

      It's not a very practical design from any standpoint, and that's fine because it's a fantasy action game about a girl fighting an army of demons by herself.

    10. Missing avatar

      Marc on March 11, 2016

      Am I the only one to find that she either has an overly big chest or her dress doesn't fit her job well enough ?
      Any jump would surely cause some boob slip.
      I thought this 3d model was a WIP but now i'm getting a bit concerned. Have you guys asked any women in the team for their opinion aboud the 3d model ? It seemed fine in 2d though.

    11. Zurcn on March 9, 2016

      @Michael Medina
      but... they specifically say they ate all the donuts...

    12. Bradley Joseph Vicaire/Rakel of the Wind on March 7, 2016

      Thank you for your continued Hard and Diligent work, I am looking forward to playing and enjoying the expanse and quality of Yours and our game.

    13. Michael Medina on March 7, 2016

      Great work so far guys! Save me a donut.

    14. AJ the Dragon of Dojima on March 4, 2016

      Good luck, stick to your vision, don't rush things, don't let the scope of the project wear you out, and most importantly don't bow to recent social pressure...if you catch my drift.

    15. Missing avatar

      Jack on March 4, 2016

      Also, don't censor a thing! no self-censorship either! thanks!

    16. Missing avatar

      Jack on March 4, 2016

      Love her figure, breasts, butt etc, don't change a thing!

      So glad I made the donation of $300, this is looking like a very nice investment!

      Also regarding your last post, character 3 is my favorite.

    17. Missing avatar

      Jared Boynowski on March 4, 2016

      Apparently the 'cover' for the left shoulder is there to add those 2 new ribbons to miriam, which were added not because of 'yay ribbons' (which ARE cool IMO), but because staff thought miriam was too hard to keep track of depending on the background colour and whatnot. frankly I think it sounds like some people need a colourblind mode but who knows. I'd like to see them play dragons crown multiplayer though. THAT game is easy to lose track of where you are =P

    18. Missing avatar

      Adalrich on March 3, 2016

      Not to sound too nitpicky, but why have they covered Miriam's left shoulder? It wasn't like that in the initial concept art, and I liked the asymmetry.

    19. Brent Taylor on March 3, 2016

      You haven't seen bloomers often because people haven't regularly worn them for a couple hundred years lol. It fits the time period and aesthetic well. And they're not tattoos, so...yeah. I imagine she's not thrilled about them, either. I think they're supposed to be beautiful, but also a bit unsettling.

    20. Missing avatar

      Darius on March 3, 2016

      Wow, the design turn out pretty great! Good job! Looking forward to seeing animations and weapon designs eventually. Keep up the amazing work guys!

    21. vlahka on March 3, 2016

      @Scars Unseen I guess its just something I dont see very often so it looks strange. Its fine though. The only thing I really dont like are all the tattoo things all over the place. Its like theres just a little too much.

    22. Scars Unseen on March 3, 2016

      @Vlahka It's not a modern fashion, but both bloomers and pettipants have been used in this manner both for modesty and to prevent chafing. The ones Miriam are wearing look more like bloomers, though the length is probably closer to pettipants. I don't see a problem with it.

    23. vlahka on March 3, 2016

      @Patrick M Lankert It wouldnt really be fan service underbutt if she wasnt wearing shorts underneath. They'd have to purposely tip her over and spread her legs for you to see anything. There would be zero fan service. Besides, how often do you see someone wearing shorts under a skirt? Practically never. I would of preferred something slightly different instead of that, like a normal slightly longer skirt that tapers off behind in a split like some psuedo trenchcoat type thing.

    24. Patrick M Lankert on March 3, 2016

      3/3 looks fantastic, in my opinion.
      Nice update, can't wait to see the model in motion!
      I'm also glad you went with black shorts instead of fan-servicey underbutt.

    25. Beano Lee on March 3, 2016

      Love the Miriam turnaround! Shader working great as intended. Please retain her breast size and ignore all those silly complaints about them being too big.

    26. vlahka on March 3, 2016

      @Nicholas Perry I like to think the people that complain about the breast sizes are also ones who would love to point at womenw ith slightly larger busts and ridicule them in the street for not dressing appropriately but dont because of the amount of of ridicule they'd get. Character sexualized? Women sexualize themselves far more in real life and they dont say a thing. Its ok for reality but not drawings. Makes no sense.

      @Adam If they were going for fan service they would of opened that top down the middle and not included those shorts/bloomer things under the skirt. She's wearing more material than the Kardashians who no one seems to have issues with.

    27. Missing avatar

      Nicholas Perry on March 2, 2016

      Also: People complaining about her breasts, sod off. Seriously. Pick something of actual substance and merit to whine about. No one here cares about that except you.

    28. Missing avatar

      Nicholas Perry on March 2, 2016

      I'll reiterate from last month.
      I honestly think the model would look better if the hair was a mix of 1/3
      http://u.cubeupload.com/MrBonk/Vpx22pxcopy.png

      It gives more depth to the hair vs 3 alone
      http://u.cubeupload.com/MrBonk/Vpx22px.png

      Also: Please consider implementing SMAA T2x like the developers of Ethan Carter did for the UE4 version of that game. The video of the character model shows exactly what is wrong with UE4 as usual, very harsh shading resulting in a metric crap ton of static and temporal aliasing.

      UE4's built in Temporal AA is unfit for the job because rather than actually resolving and handling detail correctly, it uses WAY too wide of a resolve filter width to over soften the image to help create the illusion of temporal stability.

      Ethan Carter on UE4 is also the perfect example of this, as it has other artifacts as well. It can't handle fast motion coherently. Resulting in smearing in motion. And with very very fine thin detail like blades of grass, rather than resolve it properly, in motion it looks like it is warping as it sways rather than simply swaying and retaining the detail of sub-pixel motion. (Not even combining UE4TAA with 4xSSAA fixes this)

      SMAAT2x isn't perfect, but it's fast and is better qualified for the job than UE4's TAA. And considering the types of material you are going for with the world design, it needs good pre-filtering of textures and shading and good AA.

    29. Otoshigami No. 40723
      Superbacker
      on March 2, 2016

      I think it's more about BALANCE between fans and creators to make this game better when it comes with kickstarter. still it's up to the creator like IGA on how the game should be like in the end as he is open up to suggestions toward his backers

    30. Banni Ibrahim on March 2, 2016

      Oh, the flower on her back sticks out like that? I never realized it before, I thought it was just flat on her skin like the rest of the "tattoos", I like it. Also, I am glad it looks like it is actually made out of glass. When I first saw the character's model, I thought "She is supposed to be infected with a curse that is turning her body into stained glass, but those just look like ink or tattoos on her skin", but the flower on her back does look like it is made out of glass. Although, I am guessing there is still a little more work to do on the shader, since at certain angles the light seems to reflect off the glass funny.... or is the light supposed to be going through the glass and shining on her back?

    31. Adam on March 2, 2016

      If it truly was the developer's vision to make Miriam's bust that big, then I think they should keep it. HOWEVER, if the slightest bit of fan-service went into changing her bust size, then I wish for them to back to the original design. I don't think creators should let the fans decide how their work turns out.

      As for my personal opinion on her bust, I think it looks a bit too big, but whatever.

      Anyway, great job on the shaders, IGA and the team! :D

    32. Missing avatar

      Danny Campbell on March 2, 2016

      I think's Miriam's model looks fantastic. I like everything about her. I don't think her boobs are ridiculously huge. They aren't the size of any fighting game's girls breasts. It's not like they are sorceress from Dragon's crown huge or anything. I think they look fine in her costume. I think she looks fantastic and I actually think her new model suits her.

    33. Nickolas Butler on March 2, 2016

      Shaders, colors, and art direction look fantastic. Really liking shader and background 3.

      I definitely however side with some of the earlier posters that I feel Miriam's garb looks impractical for per proportions. I would appreciate something slightly more respectful for a leading lady. I understand that this is going for a stylized look, but as a married man, I'm really not comfortable playing games like street fighter V, with women sexualized to an extreme, and as a long time IGA-vania fan, i'm really hoping that this game does not head in that direction.

      I really appreciate you chiming in here @Ben Judd. Was your response only directed towards the shader discussions, or Miriam's design/proportions as well?

      IGA and team, you have my sincere thanks for all of your dedication and hard work. I absolutely can't wait to see more!

      Cheers,

      Nicko

    34. Brent Taylor on March 2, 2016

      More than just "for the most part", I'd say, actually...something like 99% friendly. There have been only a couple of borderline incidents that weren't all that bad.

      Someone brought up Senran Kagura. Hahahaha....if you think Miriam looks anything like that, then...well...yeah, that would be terrible, but this is nothing like that at all lol. Those things fly every which way on their own and are big enough to necessitate back surgery. Not exactly what Miriam has here.

    35. Scars Unseen on March 2, 2016

      @Jake Arya: That's not a controversy; it's a conversation. There are dissenting opinions, of course, but we do try to keep it friendly for the most part on the forums.

    36. Jake on March 2, 2016

      @Scars Unseen I think we are talking about the same one. I must admit I only went on the thread a couple of times. I did not see the poll nor have I read any of the latest comments. I only joined that forum fairly recently, so dont really know how to use it!
      By controversial I meant how people were talking about her breast size and people had different views. Apologies.

    37. Scars Unseen on March 2, 2016

      @Jake Arya: By controversial, are you referring to the topic with the poll in which 85% of the votes are fine with Miriam as she is? Because that's less of a controversy and more of a vocal minority being vocal. Heck, towards the end of the thread, people are mostly just cracking Monty Python jokes.

    38. Brian Standridge on March 2, 2016

      I really enjoy the style of Shader 3/3. With Character 3, I like that it has more of, for lack of a better way to describe it, a comic/illustration/graphic novel style. Miriam's shadows have a bit more contrast, and I like the additional colors. The deep blues and lavenders feel nice for the shadows, and it all really does stick to a nice color palette. What I like about Background 3 is that it looks like it has a bit more blue than one, and that the lighting is different in a way I can see the background by adding a bit more brightness, and the colors in BG 3 fit the C3 style better. I can see why people would like Shaders 1/1 as well, but I like that Shaders 3/3 give a bit more style and character to the art for this game, at least in my opinion.

      As for Miriam's design, I like that the flower on her back is really a crystal the extends from her back. It really gives the crystal importance, and I think the design could be a bit stronger if the other "flowers" on her chest and legs also had some depth to them and extended out, instead of being flat like the other "splotches" of crystal you see on her body. However, I can see why you may not want to do that, as the crystal on the back would lose some individuality if it weren't the only one to extend from her body. As for her chest, a few people have mentioned something about her size. I guess that maybe her dress could be a bit bigger to cover herself more by bringing it up higher on her chest, but I really do think she's fine as it is. I love the ribbons as well. I've seen a few games use things such as ribbons and capes to make the character stand out more, and it's rather effective and nice every time.

      Good work guys! Looking forward to future updates.

    39. Jake on March 2, 2016

      @vlahka yes controversial, check out the Bloodstained forum, under Bloodstained Discussion. http://www.bloodstainedfanforums.com

    40. Scars Unseen on March 2, 2016

      But enough of this talk of heaving bosoms. Let's talk of more important matters: sword or whip?

    41. Luke Hardwicke on March 2, 2016

      What did you do yo Steve?

    42. Bast Bramhall on March 2, 2016

      God forbid a woman is unfortunate to have an ample size bosom in this day and age. Maybe the government should offer free breast reductions to these women so they will stop offending the poor folks who are made to feel uncomfortable by insensitive genetics.

    43. Dylan Zivic on March 2, 2016

      Yes! Character3/Background3 were my choices, awesome, I think this is the closest to actual drawings we could possibly have. I love this style.

      PS : Are there people seriously criticizing the character breasts? You know she's more then a pair of boobs right? Aren't you to focus on the mamaries these days?
      (There are women with the same kind of figure in the real world you know?)

    44. Missing avatar

      dicetrain on March 2, 2016

      Looking at the model video, her boobs seem kind of ridiculously big. I mean I can be okay with that sort of style in some games, like I don't mind Senran Kagura being what it is, but for this game it doesn't really seem to fit. I'd probably go like half that size, particularly due to her type of dress and as it is her head seems small. I don't know why more moderate sizes are usually equated to adolescent characters, like Talim in Soul Calibur 2 or even more extreme with loli characters in anime, but it is unnecessary as there are hundreds of millions of grown women who don't have boobs nearly the size of their head. It would give Miriam a more elegant look IMO.

    45. Norm Huizenga on March 2, 2016

      Seeing the art of the Destructoid magazine makes me angry, as I paid for the issue, and never received it. I've contacted them over and over again, email/Facebook. Nothing. It seems like the gamefan website goes up and down.

    46. Daniele Balestrieri on March 2, 2016

      I was very disappointed about how it looked like a few months ago. I can now say that I kinda like it. If you manage to keep the same detail level throughout the whole game, I'd say I won't miss 2D that much.
      The point is... will the game be this consistenly detailed?

    47. Missing avatar

      Lukas Daniel Klausner
      Superbacker
      on March 2, 2016

      I still think you should tone down the oversexualization.

    48. Paulo Filho on March 2, 2016

      @Adrian, it mostly revolves around the current state of the game. I'm also very excited to see things in action, but they need time to make sure things go as planned (remember a certain game failed to deliver...). A 2D isn't really difficult to make, but you must also consider what they're trying to achieve like depth projections (which make you feel like in a 3D world), 2D-to-3D environment swapping, and many other aspects which aren't as simple to do correctly in order to employ the feelings they're striving for.

      This is a very passionate project forIGA's team, and I can only trust him. Since the beginning he's been using one of the best games to date (SotN), this is such a inspiration that we can't take for granted. I respectfully understand how people are anxious to see things in action, but if we want a truly unforgettable game we must have patience. Patience will pay off. :)