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A comic adventure game about the biggest, roughest pirate in the Azurbbean and his struggle to become a noble swashbuckler.
A comic adventure game about the biggest, roughest pirate in the Azurbbean and his struggle to become a noble swashbuckler.
A comic adventure game about the biggest, roughest pirate in the Azurbbean and his struggle to become a noble swashbuckler.
966 backers pledged $41,295 to help bring this project to life.

Good, Bad and the Sad

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Ahoy Backers!

 I have good news and bad news and I’ll get the bad news out of the way first because the good news is so awesome! 

      Ok, the bad news: we have to delay mailing the hand drawn postcards, as well as the rest of the rewards. “Why?” That question brings me to the good news: Duke Grabowski is now going to be an episodic series! It will be published by Alliance Game Studios! ( Visit them here at www.alliancegamestudios.com

This will in no way hinder or have a negative effect on the game we are making for you. It means we can work on Duke full time which will only make the first episode even better. And when that is done we will be working on four more Duke Grabowski Episodes! 

       Gene has been working on the game full time for the past year and a half, but I have had to take on some contract work which slowed me down considerably. But thanks to Matt Sughrue and the rest of the good folks at Alliance Game Studios I can focus 100% on Duke. 

       So the plan is to get Episode 1-the game that you are all getting- done by the end of July, and we will jump right into Episode 2. We hope you all will be as excited as we are about this fortunate turn of events, and now feel even more confident that Duke will be a high quality game. 

       So on to our progress report: For me it been about the production plan, which is where we answer the questions: when, where and how much? To get the animators squared away I have been storyboarding the cut scenes, so they know precisely what needs to happen in each scene. And I’m also painting the Ben Plunder Inn. 

       Gene and I have been getting Larry Ahern going on his dialog chores, working with modeler Ed Brillant to get the last two models done: a seagull and a monkey. Gene has been getting the final animation list ready, organizing tasks after our latest joint review, helping our scripters with Unity and Adventure Creator, getting the dialog in the correct format for Larry Ahern, Alliance Game Studio for translation, and for our VO actors and our sound studio. 

       Darren Johnson, a former Lucas Arts programmer who has worked on a ton of games including Grim Fandango, Outlaws, Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine, just to name a few, has joined the team. He has mostly been fixing things at a scripting level, like minor text tweaks and adjusting hotspots, but he is getting deeper into the nitty-gritty the more he learns.

     Before I sign off I want to share some very sad news: our good friend Jory Prum passed away. Some of you might know him from A Vampyre Story as the sound engineer for Bay Area Sound. He was in a bad motorcycle accident last month and it seemed like he was on the long road to recovery, but then his health took a turn for the worse and he passed away this week. I was pretty shocked and dumbfounded. I had high hopes he’d be back to full health soon, which is why I was so shocked when he didn’t. 

      I met Jory at Lucas Arts and we used to talk a bit about our mutual Alma Mater, but it was working with him on A Vampyre Story that really gave me the chance to see him in action and be able to get to know him well. I was impressed with his sound engineering. It was top notch. Julian Kwasneski, Jeremy Koerner, Jory and I had a lot of fun in his little Fairfax studio recording Froderick’s and other characters’ voices. I was really looking forward to working with him again on Duke. I am so sad now. Jory was a really great guy and we will miss him. 

 Bill Tiller

Jory Prum
Jory Prum
Oded Sharon, Martin O, and 8 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. flesk
      Superbacker
      on

      Thanks for the meaty update. I'm glad things are going so well with the game, but sad to hear about Jory. My condolences.

    2. Martin O
      Superbacker
      on

      Jory Prum also worked on nearly every Telltale Games title out there. It's really sad what happened.

    3. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      Thank you Mr. Sung! And Yes Jory was a major force in games, and his passing is a serious loss for his family and friends and the game industry.

      Yes, Jason,please do report it publicly. We appreciate it. And yes Pedro's Music will be in the game for sure. We are not sure yet if he will do all of it.

    4. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      I have a correction to make: The game will be published by Alliance Digital Media, not Alliance Game Studios, a division of Alliance Holding Inc. Check them out here! http://alliancedigitalmedia.com/
      Sorry for the confusion.

    5. Wayne Sung on

      Congratulations, guys! Looking forward to Duke duking it out! ;>

      And I just noticed Jory Prum worked on Moebius as well and looked on IMDB at all the other titles he's worked on. I never met him but I thank him for making so many games sound good. :)

    6. Missing avatar

      Jason Harang on

      Two questions:

      1) Is the content of these updates something you want to keep backer-exclusive, or is it kosher to report on the info publicly? I'd like to help promote this stuff but don't want to make assumptions.
      2) Does the game receiving publisher backing mean you will be able to invite Pedro to contribute an original score after all?

    7. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      And sorry for the typos. I (Bill Tiller) have dyslexia and it makes it hard for me to notice typos, misspellings, and grammatical errors. This is why Gene usually does these. But have no fear, I can read just fine. :) Thanks for your understanding.

    8. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      Well there shouldn't be anyone unhappy because this is a win-win: You all get the exact same game, but vastly improved. And we get to make more Duke adventures. So if like this game and you want to play more Duke Grabowski Adventures then you will be please to learn there will be more. Nothing is cut, shortened nor chnaged in anyway due to this deal. Its all more and improved. A win-win!

    9. Mike Harvat on

      Looks like I hit "send" too soon...apologies for the run-on sentence in my last post. Hopefully it still makes sense!

    10. Mike Harvat on

      Thanks for your clarifying comments in this thread! I must admit, I was pretty disappointed when I first got the e-mail. Even though the game was supposed to be small, almost a proof-of-concept type game, from the beginning, it felt like I had paid for one thing and now I was getting something else.

      I'm very pleased to learn that Episode 1 will tell a complete story without any major cliffhangers, and it's exciting that now more content will be produced! For what it's worth, I think it would help to send an update clarifying things further to backers - it might save you from a few unhappy e-mails :)

    11. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      Hi Speacebug,
      Duke will fulfill his quest in THIS game. New quests will start in other episodes, just like in Star Wars: A New Hope, how Luke defeats the Death Star, but Darth Vader and the Empire still exists leaving fertile ground for future stories. This game will NOT be at all like Empire Strikes Back, where Han Solo has to be rescued from Jaba and the audience is left hanging. It has always been the the plan that Duke would fulfill his quest in this game and rest assured it still is.

    12. Daniel on

      Great news. The talent you have gathered deserves to shine as much as possible

    13. Spacebug on

      I know you've just answered this, but I really want to emphasise that this game needs a satisfying conclusion to its story. Please don't go to the dark side and make it cliffhangerey or a non-complete/satisfying conclusion! :)

      "A story without and ending is a cruel thing"

      Sorry to hear about your friend, Jory :(

    14. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      Eduardo Blake, you got exactly right! The current game we are making is exactly the same as before, but with a publisher backing it will be even better! And then Alliance is going to fund four more similarly sized episodes. We are NOT splitting this game into five smaller episodes. I apologize for not making that clearer. I do art pretty well but I am not so great at public relations. :)

    15. Venture Moon Industries Creator on

      Episode one is the game you will be getting, and its exactly the same game we planned to make from day one. No change there (other than now it will look and play a lot better and get done a lot sooner). But now it will be sold to non backers, and there will be more episodes. Episode 1 will not leave off at a cliff hanger, but it will be clear that the characters and situation can be expanded upon. Our current plan is to make 5 total episodes, that will send Duke on new adventures.

    16. Oded Sharon on

      Jory will be missed. He was a good friend and an amazing individual.

    17. EduB on

      As far as I understand, we are getting the same content as before (remember that the game was always intended to be a small one), only that now that game will become the first episode of a new series, that Alliance is funding.

      If I understood correctly, of course.

    18. Aurelien VANDOORINE on

      I wonder the same as Blake the pargraph :
      "So the plan is to get Episode 1-the game that you are all getting- done by the end of July, and we will jump right into Episode 2. We hope you all will be as excited as we are about this fortunate turn of events, and now feel even more confident that Duke will be a high quality game."

      Definitely seems to say we only get episode I which was not the plan at all, so it would be great to have some clarification. It was supposed to be a full game, so getting a part of it does not look too good to me.

    19. Elpiniki Kappa ~ Dream Traveller :D on

      Can you clarify please if Episode 1(the one we are getting apparently) will be self-contained/independant? Will it be the full game we backed? Thanks

    20. Blake on

      I'm torn by this. A full game backed has now become episodic, and we only get the first episode?