"Almost there!" May production update
We’ve reached the middle of May and the team is still hard at work on the final (!!!) episode of Dreamfall Chapters. Things Take Time, episodic is hard, etc. — yep, you’ve heard this before: we do want the conclusion to the saga to be a worthy one, and we’re not going to rush it out the door…even though our originally planned release window has come and almost gone.
A release date is not far off, however, and so here’s what the team is currently working on:
The location artists have wrapped up work on the new environments, and are now focusing almost entirely on special effects and cut-scene lighting. Some of the scenes in Book Five look absolutely gorgeous; a departure from anything in the previous four episodes, and some of the best work our artists have done so far. We look forward to sharing more of their work soon.
The character artists are done with all the major (and minor) characters, and are now focusing on the remaining backers — some Doppelgängers and all the Birthrighters — whose models are being put into the final episode (and also previous episodes).
On the writing and voice-over side, we still have four characters (and three actors) left to record. It’s been a challenge getting everyone’s schedules to match up, and this time we’ve also had some real difficulties booking all the actors and securing studio time (and casting one final key role) — but we should be wrapped by this coming Friday.
All the gameplay has been implemented, and the designers are completing the (many, many) cut-scenes for the series’ conclusion, along with testing and fixing bugs. They’re also making some big changes to Book One — improving the start of the game, and hopefully tightening the story and gameplay a bit. We’ve learned a LOT since 2014, and it was time to apply those lessons.
On the coding side, it’s mostly about fixing bugs and performing optimisations — there are no remaining features to be implemented, and the coders are spending most of their free time porting the game to new platforms, though there have also been some frustrating Unity issues to deal with.
New animations are still trickling in, but the animators are focusing mostly on iterating existing animations — making them smoother, better, more lifelike. With two animators and dozens upon dozens of cut-scenes, it’s amazing how they get it all done. But they do. Every single time.
Finally, on the audio side, our composer is working full time on getting a huge amount of original music done (some of the best we’ve heard so far in this game) and our talented sound designer is putting the final touches on the scenes and cinematic sequences — improving on the already great atmosphere in the new locations. We’re also hoping to have the full soundtrack ready for the release of Book Five, though it may take a few extra days to get it mastered and published.
We know a lot of you are getting increasingly impatient with the wait, and we completely understand and appreciate your frustration — but we believe that, in the end, it’s all about the quality of the game, and how the story was told…and how it ended. We hope and trust the wait will be worth it — but yeah, it has been a long, long, long wait. Luckily, Book Five is probably the team's best work so far, and, we think, a fitting end to this saga. We trust you’ll agree!
Finally, here’s a little bonus — a closer look at two of the character models in Book Five, created by our amazing 3D artist Hans Kristian Andersen:
We’ll definitely post more of these in the future.
The next update will most likely have a trailer AND a release date, more screenshots and information about still-to-come backer rewards. Until then, thanks again for your patience and support. It’s truly been the longest journey (!) but we’re approaching the end now — and we’re both very happy and very, very sad about that.
Thanks for reading!