COMMUNI-RAY, er DAY: MIGHTY HALLOWEEN!
Trick or Treat, Mighty Beckers!
What’s that you say? You want both?! Well you’re in luck, because today’s update is double-stuffed with exciting news (this is a full-sized candy bar house!), starting with details on the potential bonus DLC we teased in our recent update! As promised, here’s a full breakdown of (surprise! ...or maybe not? :) an all-new level and boss!
WHAT IS “POTENTIAL DLC”?
First of all, let’s clarify a few things up front, starting with what “potential DLC” means: The "DLC" term is there to make it clear that, no matter what, this content wouldn't ship at the same time as the game. It would be need to be "DownLoaded," putting the "DL" in "DLC" :)
Otherwise, this content would be "extra bonus content" – working the same way it did with the English voicework – that would be added on top of everything already promised as part of the Kickstarter. That means that, if we get the necessary funding from slacker backers we need to make it possible (more on that later), this would be extra bonus content! (FYI the English voicework will be included with the game at launch, but this DLC would come later.)
Also, we want to stress that none of the developers have or would begin working in earnest on this DLC until their work is done on the Mighty No. 9 retail release. (Which, as some of you might know, is typically several months before any game ships for most disciplines, especially artists and such.) Speaking of schedules, if we reach the necessary funding by the end of this calendar year, we estimate this DLC bonus content would be ready to play in summer 2015.
But wait – we still haven’t explained what the content is! Simply speaking, it would be an entirely new level and boss: Beck’s rival, Ray! (That’s a working name, BTW!)
Those of you who followed our campaign from the start will know we can’t have a new Mighty No. 9 boss without a detailed rundown of the inspiration behind them, courtesy of Director Koji Imaeda and Character Designer KIMOKIMO. Take it away, guys!
PHASE 1: FROM ZERO TO HERO
KIMOKIMO: Since my duties for the designs of all the Mighty No. 9 characters wrap earlier than most everyone else, I decided to turn my attention to the possibility of characters that might be added later via DLC. Initially, all I had to go on were the whispers going around the office that Inafune-san was thinking about a potential rival character. So I asked myself, “What kind of character could compete with Beck?” My goal was to answer that question -- the other details of the design could wait.
Usually you’ll find rival characters have similar specs to the protagonist, but this time I went for the opposite: a lone wolf character with no siblings; a robot with a big hole in its chest where its essential (?) core should be…
PHASE 2: ACE IN THE HOLE
IMAEDA: From there we went straight to Inafune-san. But before we could show him what we had, he started telling us more about his idea of the character and made his own quick sketch.
He wanted a sense of mystery, so he told us not to reveal the whole design at once, but maybe just start with a cool-looking silhouette…
KIMOKIMO: That was when I showed him the sketch I’d made before, and mentioned the idea of putting a hole in Ray’s chest. That triggered something in Inafune-san, who suddenly started showering us with ideas!
INAFUNE: “What if the hole in its chest means Ray’s incomplete somehow – slowly deteriorating over time?”
“And what if Ray has the same absorption ability as Beck, but needs to absorb other robots to survive? How cool would that be!?”
IMAEDA: …in an instant, we had the main themes of our new character idea!
PHASE 3: BAT AROUND IDEAS
KIMOKIMO: The concept that Ray needs to absorb to survive is exciting and tragic both at once, in stark contrast to Beck. Perfect for a rival character!
Armed with these new details, Inafune-san and I went back and forth a bit on the design.
I started incorporating a more bat-like feel, to go along with this idea of a vampire-robot that survives by feeding off of other robots, adding details like half of its face crumbled away, and hiding the broken parts of its body. We added a tail, and wrapped Ray in bandages…
PHASE 4: EVERYBODY LOVES RAY, MAN
IMAEDA: But the designs started looking less like a rival and more like a typical boss.
KIMOKIMO: After running a few ideas past Inafune-san, we thought the cloaked look worked best, so we polished it into the final design:
KIMOKIMO: Ray’s right horn and cloak are breaking down into Xel to make the deterioration obvious, and the circuitry you can see in its head emphasizes how incomplete it is. The devil’s certainly in the details with this design!
KIMOKIMO: I love characters like Ray, so before I knew it I was scribbling all kinds of stuff. It was actually good that the design wasn’t 100% complete, since it let me try out all kinds of ideas whenever I sketched something…I may try even more crazy ideas if the character makes it into the game!
So there you have it folks – if we can raise the necessary funds via slacker backers, all backers will get to fight against Ray in an all-new level!
So what will this cost? $190K. Well, actually more than that – quite a bit more when you add in royalties we need to pay the platform holders, plus additional testing and QA, taxes, etc. but $190K is the minimum amount we need where we can safely say we can cover the rest of the costs ourselves.
Where did we get that number? We worked with Mighty developer Inti Creates to come up with a safe estimate, based on our early ideas for the stage and Ray (note: exchange rates have moved 10% or so in the last couple months, but we are still playing it safe):
TOO LONG, DIDN’T READ!
If we reach another $190K via slacker backers by the end of this calendar year, ALL backers will get a bonus DLC code to download an extra level and boss sometime summer 2015!
From here on out, it’s all up to our slacker backers: will we sell enough games and rewards to “catch some Ray(s),” or will it be “a shame about Ray”? Only time will tell! Watch this space for updates – and either way, as always, thanks so much to all of you for all your feedback and support! We’ll update you with more info soon (￣^￣)ゞ
We hope our mysterious newcomer Ray put you in the mood for more spooky goodness, because it’s time to skulk down the haunted back-alleys of our Halloween forum event and check out what creepy creations our fellow Beckers have to offer!
So turn down the lights and get ready for some goosebumps, Mighties…
And last but not least, Inti Creates’ very own Art Director Yuuji Natsume decided to get in on the frightening festivities and contribute some Mighty Halloween art for all of you to enjoy!
Thanks as always, Natsume-san!
Hope you enjoyed our eerie Halloween-themed update, Mighties! Let us know your impressions of the Ray content, your thoughts on our bone-chilling Becker fan art, and of course your awesome Halloween plans with us down here in the comments, back on the forums, on twitter, or on our official Facebook page!
Have fun trick-or-treating and we’ll see you in the next update! (｀_´)ゞ
- Dina (Mighty No. 1046), Koji Imaeda (Mighty No. 610), KIMOKIMO (Mighty No. 299) and the Mighty No. 9 Team