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AGS Games => AGS Games in Production => Topic started by: rongel on 21 Aug 2017, 14:53

Title: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 21 Aug 2017, 14:53
Whether the dreams brought on the fever or the fever brought on the dreams Walter Gilman did not know. - H.P. Lovecraft, The Dreams in the Witch House

Story :

Walter Gilman has just moved to Arkham and is starting his studies at the Miskatonic University. The Dombrowski's boarding house where he resides has a bad reputation, but Walter doesn't mind the old rumours.
Until the dreams start. Can Walter hang on for two months and suffer through the dreaded May-Eve when witches roam the earth and the slaves of Satan gather for nameless rites and deeds?

Description:

The Witch House is an urban survival adventure game, where the player has to survive for two months, and face the May-Eve night. The game combines RPG elements to classic adventure game genre.
The player can choose to explore the old rumours, read the forbidden books at Miskatonic University, or concentrate on studies and keeping Walter in a good physical and mental state.

Based on the short story "Dreams in the Witch House" by H.P. Lovecraft.

Features:

- Open world sandbox meets traditional point and click adventure game
- Set in the late 1920's Arkham city
- Advancing time and day/evening/night - cycles
- RPG elements: Money, health, sanity, hunger and several other character states   
- Random events, city activities and encounters
- Several endings depending on player's actions
- 320 x 180 pixel graphics
- Two click-interface
- Music by Troy Sterling Nies

Screenshots:

(http://i.imgur.com/XDxM7eY.jpg)
Walter's room

(http://i.imgur.com/TKhPKlH.jpg)
The Witch House on a rainy evening

(http://i.imgur.com/QLuhG8J.jpg)
Hanging out at Joe Mazurewicz's place

(http://i.imgur.com/wvnXbmO.jpg)
Evening at the Arkham downtown

Progress:

The Witch House is my first game, and a passion project for me. I work on it part-time, so the progress is slow. I've been messing around with it since 2016(!) and what started as an experimental fan project, has turned into a more professional product.

Release date:

2021
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 21 Aug 2017, 15:02
OH HELL YES!!!

A Lovecraft inspired adventure/resource-survival game with those beautiful graphics?!

Colour me riveted!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Crimson Wizard on 21 Aug 2017, 15:05
Really a good looking project :).
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: AnasAbdin on 21 Aug 2017, 15:08
I'm stopping my life until this is done.
Waiting...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 21 Aug 2017, 15:24
this is an awesome idea for a game. The mechanics sound really fun and the graphics look great already, yeah, best of luck with the project and post lots of updates please :)
That witch house looks great in that painting style but also almost too friendly. or maybe this is intentional to deceive the player :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 21 Aug 2017, 16:53
Thanks for the comments! I'll update the page now and then, there is quite a lot of things already done, but don't want to spoil the exciting stuff too much.

Selmiak, that's a interesting comment about the house looking too friendly. You are right that I don't want it to look too much like a "haunted house". Things will get grim, but at start it's just another old house. I think that Arkham is presented many times too ghastly, like it's almost a cemetary. But ofcourse the right balance is important, it can't be a fairytale house either.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 21 Aug 2017, 17:48
I think that Arkham is presented many times too ghastly, like it's almost a cemetary. But ofcourse the right balance is important, it can't be a fairytale house either.

I think your balance of normality vs. disturbing is fine in relating to the Lovecraft genre.

His locations were rarely over-the-top gothic-horror edifaces in the way that Poe would have written them and he usually had his most terrifying characters living behind plain, if slightly affluent, doors.

I love this take on horror, which has carried over into Stephen King and Clive Barker, amongst others, in our modern time:

The feeling that the worst horror imaginable could be just behind the door of that house you pass by every day...

Much scarier than a huge gothic castle perched on a mountaintop...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Nixxon on 21 Aug 2017, 20:18
Duuuude!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 21 Aug 2017, 20:59
Looks really good. I don't know about this passing of time and survival stuff, though.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SilverSpook on 21 Aug 2017, 21:04
Looks fantastic! Interesting concept as well. Added to the wishlist!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 23 Aug 2017, 09:46
This page needs some animation:

(http://i.imgur.com/yBWlnXb.gif) (http://i.imgur.com/xd1vsQd.gif)  (http://i.imgur.com/u06dDoC.gif)

Walter Gilman, Landlord Mrs. Dombrowski, and a generic Arkham Citizen marching away.



Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: NicolaGs on 23 Aug 2017, 11:35
This page needs some animation
Totally agree with that !
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: xBRANEx on 23 Aug 2017, 13:11
I'm in love with this project! I wish you luck!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SarahLiz on 25 Aug 2017, 20:44
Oh hell yeah...this looks awesome!! 
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 29 Aug 2017, 06:45
Oh hell yeah...this looks awesome!! 
I'm in love with this project! I wish you luck!

Thanks, nice to hear that!

Another screenie:

(http://i.imgur.com/U7WZinC.jpg)

Walter is attending a lecture at Miskatonic University. At this moment there are four lectures and exams that you can attend (but you don't have to!). If you have studied enough, you'll get better grades. There is also a little query in exams that checks if you remember what you have read, so that affects the grades too.

Currently working with the university library, and building a system how to borrow borrow specific books for the right course. The occult books are kept under lock and key, and you need a special permission from the Chief Librarian Dr. Armitage to use those.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Surdy on 29 Aug 2017, 13:40
I love Lovecraft & this gorgeous pixel-art is simply amazing. Good luck with this project :D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 06 Sep 2017, 20:45
The lobby of the Dombrowski's lodging house:

(https://i.imgur.com/FDh34aR.jpg)

Walter is complaining about the scurrying of the rats.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: eri0o on 07 Sep 2017, 12:26
Hey rongel! I like this game premise a lot! Re read the Cthulu mythos in a pretty book recently last week and I really like your screenshots. Your art reminds me of  Edward Hopper's Nighthawks. You seem to be advancing fast, which is awesome! I really want to play your game! :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Riaise on 07 Sep 2017, 15:18
I agree, the artwork and graphics are really amazing! ;-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 07 Sep 2017, 16:02
I so need to play this game.

Lovecraft, gorgeous graphics, and what sound like deep gameplay mechanics.

Win, win, win!!!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 07 Sep 2017, 17:37
Thanks all! :-D

It's my first time working on pixel graphics, so the art style formed quite naturally, it sort of just became that way. My background is in animation, so that helps too!

These screen caps are quite old, and there is more stuff in the storage. Miskatonic University is keeping me occupied currently, as it's a big block in the game.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 07 Sep 2017, 17:47
Is this going to be a commercial release?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 07 Sep 2017, 20:55
Is this going to be a commercial release?

Short answer is that I don't know yet! This started as a hobby project, but is much more serious work now. And I still want to continue without any limits or deadlines. Publishing the game is something that I have no experience on. I have some plans/hopes but nothing concrete yet. So the answer is maybe!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 07 Sep 2017, 22:47
There is also a little query in exams that checks if you remember what you have read, so that affects the grades too.

Hopefully Walter will have a photographic memory or at least have that option. Maybe some sort of mechanic where Walter can do all the remembering for you and then he'll know what the correct answers are on the test?
Spoiler: ShowHide
Having read the original story am I correct in assuming that it is possible to get killed? Will there be a way to defeat the witch without getting killed by her familiar at the end?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 09 Sep 2017, 09:36

Hopefully Walter will have a photographic memory or at least have that option. Maybe some sort of mechanic where Walter can do all the remembering for you and then he'll know what the correct answers are on the test?
Spoiler: ShowHide
Having read the original story am I correct in assuming that it is possible to get killed? Will there be a way to defeat the witch without getting killed by her familiar at the end?


When you study for a test, Walter will read aloud the answers. Then when you take a test, it's a multiple choice query, and if you have studied enough, the right answer (which Walter had read aloud before) will be available. But this system is not ready yet, so there might be some changes too. Main thing is that it requires some interaction, and is a small puzzle in itself.

Spoiler: ShowHide
Walter can die during the game. Like in survival games, you must eat and you can get sick or injured. So these deaths are unscripted events. There will be several endings, and unlike in the short story, you can survive and defeat Brown Jenkin. But ofcourse you could suffer the same fate as in the story too...

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 15 Oct 2017, 12:24
(https://i.imgur.com/OrYhMFq.jpg)

It's been a while since I posted last time, so here's an update! As you might have guessed, that is the main menu, the starting screen. I'll tweak it more later on, but it will do for now. Maybe the buttons need bit more polish/sparkle... Suggestions  and other comments are very welcome! I played around with the Smooth Scroll module, and was able to do a nice parallax tilt to the Witch House. You'll see it a bit later, when I have time to do my first video.

As the Halloween approaches, I'll be posting more stuff, and this time it's the scary, evil stuff. You might get a glimpse of Brown Jenkin, or even Keziah! 8-0
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 15 Oct 2017, 13:22
The way "WITCH HOUSE" is written makes me think of old cartoons somehow. The rest is absolutely fine. Great background image.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 15 Oct 2017, 19:29
The way "WITCH HOUSE" is written makes me think of old cartoons somehow.

Yes, I was thinking that the "house" is almost like "mouse", so it might remind of old Mickey Mouse posters (laugh). But really I was trying to get old, pulpy horror movie poster feeling to it.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: shaun9991 on 15 Oct 2017, 19:50
I am seriously drooling over this. Looks amazing :D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 16 Oct 2017, 00:03
I am seriously drooling over this. Looks amazing :D

+1
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Riaise on 16 Oct 2017, 13:31
I agree, the background is amazing! I like the Witch House font, maybe you can try toning down the red slightly, but other than that I think it looks great! ;-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 20 Oct 2017, 08:41
Thanks for the comments! Here's a new one:

(https://i.imgur.com/ZO9E4Sm.gif)

Something strange is happening in the Witch House. It must be a dream, right?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Pilchard on 20 Oct 2017, 09:40
Ah, I'm sure that glowing pink portal in the wall is nothing to worry about, back to sleep...

Looks great, as have all your screenshots so far! I'm not familiar with Lovecraft but the game has intrigued me. The light RPG systems sound really novel.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Creamy on 20 Oct 2017, 17:05
Lovecraft inspires so many adventure games!

I dig your style. The animations look neat too.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 20 Oct 2017, 18:48
awesome.

though that portal would make books, table, chair, bed and lamp throw some shadows...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 20 Oct 2017, 20:16
Looks great, as have all your screenshots so far! I'm not familiar with Lovecraft but the game has intrigued me. The light RPG systems sound really novel.

Thanks! I hope that the game will be totally enjoyable to people who don't know anything about Lovecraft. This story is quite different than the usual "Cthulhu Mythos" stories. It's more concentrated on the main character, and you don't have to know anything about the Old Ones etc. Still Lovecraft fans will get an extra kick out of it, I hope. 

The Lite RPG-system/open world mechanism was something I wanted to try and I feel it fits the story well. The problem is that it takes a lot of time to make it all work, and possibility of bugs goes way up. Also, I want that the game has a good replay value (Walter might die half-way through the game!), so the puzzles should have some variation each time. Good thing is that I have learned a lot scripting doing this. The code is a bit messy, but it's slowly getting better. Just learned about floating point numbers yesterday! (laugh)

Lovecraft inspires so many adventure games!

I dig your style. The animations look neat too.
awesome.

though that portal would make books, table, chair, bed and lamp throw some shadows...

Thank you! :-D

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 26 Oct 2017, 10:49
Maybe the community could advice me a bit... I'm thinking about changing the resolution of the game. It's currently 320 x 200, so if people will play it fullscreen with 16:9 monitors, there will be black borders, or an ugly stretch effect. I kind of just noticed that when I upgraded AGS to 3.4.0.16 version, I could use 320 x 180 resolution which would fill the screen nicely and pixel perfect.

Of course making that kind of change seems a bit daunting. But I feel it's easier to design rooms and graphics for 16:9 aspect ratio. The inventory is hidden normally so I have the full screen height to use anyway. Gui's have to be re-designed, but that's not that big of a problem, because I haven't really worked on those. Bigger problem is if I crop my backgrounds, I'll lose my hotspots, walkbehinds etc. But is there something else I should consider, something that might cause bigger problems? Currently I feel that the extra work would be worth it.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 26 Oct 2017, 10:58
20 pixels doesn't seem like much but at this low res it's quite a lot going missing.
I can't speak for others but I play AGS games in a window, mostly 2x or 3x scale.

Here you go, input.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 26 Oct 2017, 18:14
Here you go, input.

Thanks for the input! Yes, every pixel counts. Somehow I feel that playing the game on full screen feels more like playing "real" game. Those black borders might raise questions to casual gamer. I made some test with 320 x 180 px, the backgrounds didn't suffer that much, 10 pixels off from top and bottom. And those parts usually haven't got anything important going on. I enjoy that I can have full screen mode and there isn't any stretching going on. I still have to think about it, like you said, quite a lot pixels would be lost, and more work with the background tweaking.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 26 Oct 2017, 18:55
The "casual gamer" won't go for low res games even if they come in the right aspect ratio. Wadjet Eye games have a small but dedicated player base who like the graphics as they are, and the Steam forums for said games get the occasional "this looks like crap" threads by people who wouldn't buy them anyway.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 27 Oct 2017, 05:46
go for 16:9, it is so much smoother when playing in fullscreen on a 16:9 monitor, and a 16:9 monitor is pretty much a standard household item nowadays. keep the graphics pixely and oldschool but adapt bto  modern screen resolution. :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 27 Oct 2017, 12:43
I too would say go for it!

After I drew a few backgrounds for a game I'm currently working on I decided to crop 20 pixels in heigth too. It's not that much of a difference, but really worth it I think. It's nice not to have black borders on the sides.

Your game looks really nice btw, keep it up!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 28 Oct 2017, 07:02
Would it be possible to keep the back backgrounds as they are, but give the player the choice of whether they wish to see boxes on the borders or to crop the images? Though this would require having to figure some way to get the engine to crop the images for you you and I don't know how difficult that would be to code.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 28 Oct 2017, 15:36
Yes, I think that I'm going with the 16:9 aspect. It's more work, but looks more professional in my opinion too. I think it's also easier to desing rooms to 16:9, I've had problems with the room heights, all the action happens in the middle part of the screen, and the top and bottom is usually just dead space.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 30 Oct 2017, 15:21
Happy Halloween from Keziah Mason! Watch out or she'll get you! 8-0

(https://i.imgur.com/SBiVG0Q.gif)

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 04 Nov 2017, 00:41
This looks Excellent. Well done 8-)

Only issue will be if it is challenging for those of us who belong to the cult and thus have read the story (laugh)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mini_Doom on 04 Nov 2017, 06:36
The graphics look great :shocked: can't wait
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Fitz on 05 Nov 2017, 07:47
Man, the game looks incredible! The character design, animation, the backgrounds, it all just oozes style and atmosphere. And those flickering reflections in the last image! :shocked:
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Surdy on 06 Nov 2017, 15:57
Very good work. Keep up the good work, man :D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 06 Nov 2017, 18:27
This looks Excellent. Well done 8-)

Only issue will be if it is challenging for those of us who belong to the cult and thus have read the story (laugh)

Thanks! I hope so, it might give you a slight upper hand, but thats only fair. The RPG-elements and other events require also bit of strategizing.

The graphics look great :shocked: can't wait

Man, the game looks incredible! The character design, animation, the backgrounds, it all just oozes style and atmosphere. And those flickering reflections in the last image! :shocked:

Very good work. Keep up the good work, man :D

Thanks everyone!
Been working a lot with the game recently, but progress is slow with these things. Still I think I've made more progress this autumn, than in the whole last year...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 07 Nov 2017, 15:54
Wonder what would happen if you threw a bucket of water on Keziah Mason? It worked in the Wizard of Oz! :grin: Though I imagine in this game it would only annoy her and cause her to do something nasty to you.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 19 Dec 2017, 17:29
Sorry it's been a while since the last update! Good news is that I've been busy working with the game and made some progress.

I wanted to show you something bit different this time. This background is still a bit work-in-progress, but I wanted to share it with you before the Christmas holidays. It's one of the dream scenes, a very alien place with a strange geometry and physics.

(https://i.imgur.com/2VUQjlt.gif)

Actually it's a mini-game with several stages and parallax scrolling, and this is the first part of it. It's been a lot of work figuring this out, and because there is a lot of animation going on, it will probably be the most resource-heavy scene in the whole game (I hope that it runs smoothly with older computers...). Anyway, I hope you like it, and happy holidays! 
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 19 Dec 2017, 18:13
Let me say
Spoiler: ShowHide
wow
Spoiler: ShowHide
 (laugh)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 20 Dec 2017, 13:03
Very stylish. The colors and animations are great!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 20 Dec 2017, 23:34
this is getting better and better. Is this an old vinyl record in the top right? ;-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 22 Dec 2017, 08:10
Is this an old vinyl record in the top right? ;-D

You're not the first person saying that... But no, it's not, you will see it in the game when you scroll up to the next stage. I can say that it's more cosmic than a vinyl record. :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 10 Jan 2018, 18:30
Another screenshot, this time we are inside the Miskatonic University. Still a bit under construction though!

(https://i.imgur.com/88n9Bki.jpg)

This is the reading room where you can study for your exams, or study maths and occult (the really powerful occult books are stored in the basement and you need a permission to examine them). You can also study in your own room, but there might be strange disturbances which can break your concentration... At the right edge is the card file, where you can check the location of the books in the library. After you know the book's location, you can go and find it, and borrow it from the librarian. And behind the door is professor Armitage's office. So this is a place you will be spending quite a lot of time.

And when it's a cold day, there's also a nice fire in the fireplace :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Click'd on 10 Jan 2018, 18:52
Hey, it's Groucho Marx!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Bavolis on 11 Jan 2018, 02:18
I love everything about this project.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 11 Jan 2018, 05:31
this is a place you will be spending quite a lot of time.

This can turn me on or off depending on the feel of the place.

In this case I look forward to spending time there so job well done!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 11 Jan 2018, 09:06
This is the reading room where you can study for your exams, or study maths and occult (the really powerful occult books are stored in the basement and you need a permission to examine them). You can also study in your own room, but there might be strange disturbances which can break your concentration... At the right edge is the card file, where you can check the location of the books in the library. After you know the book's location, you can go and find it, and borrow it from the librarian. And behind the door is professor Armitage's office. So this is a place you will be spending quite a lot of time.
What about a little side research off the main route?


_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 11 Jan 2018, 10:23
Hey, it's Groucho Marx!
If you mean the librarian lady, I didn't see it first, but now that you said it... We'll fix it!

This can turn me on or off depending on the feel of the place.

In this case I look forward to spending time there so job well done!
Great to hear that! It was somehow quite difficult to design that room, because there needs to be a lot of functionality. I hope I have some time to add few extra decorations there.

I love everything about this project.
Thanks! I'm a fan of your work too!

What about a little side research off the main route?
Well, actually I forgot to tell that Walter is working on a theory, which combines magic with science. So you can also work on that (your occult and math skills add to your theory), and if you manage to write a proper thesis, you can publish it in the University newspaper, and get some pocket money!

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 11 Jan 2018, 11:54
Will this game be taking place during the prohibition? It might be an interesting play through if Walter were to blow off his classes and spend all his time in speakeasies and pool halls, though I imagine if he gets arrested or expelled that would probably bring the game to an early end. :grin:
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 11 Jan 2018, 14:38
Will this game be taking place during the prohibition? It might be an interesting play through if Walter were to blow off his classes and spend all his time in speakeasies and pool halls, though I imagine if he gets arrested or expelled that would probably bring the game to an early end. :grin:

Yes, it's set in unspecified year in late 1920s or very early 1930s. There is a puzzle dealing with getting alcohol through shady methods. Maybe alcohol also restores sanity/warmth for a while, but I've not yet that far in the game. Probably no pool halls though...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 11 Jan 2018, 15:00
Probably no pool halls though...

Awwww...But stereotyped purplely-written lowlife thugs is an awesome Lovecraft trope!!!

(While working on Chronicle Of Innsmouth I had so much fun writing the lines for the smugglers, making their slang piratey terms just ridiculous enough so that it might feel like something HPL himself had penned...He seriously had no idea how any real person below his own social level talked...)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 11 Jan 2018, 15:38
Sorry it's been a while since the last update! Good news is that I've been busy working with the game and made some progress.

I wanted to show you something bit different this time. This background is still a bit work-in-progress, but I wanted to share it with you before the Christmas holidays. It's one of the dream scenes, a very alien place with a strange geometry and physics.

(https://i.imgur.com/2VUQjlt.gif)

Actually it's a mini-game with several stages and parallax scrolling, and this is the first part of it. It's been a lot of work figuring this out, and because there is a lot of animation going on, it will probably be the most resource-heavy scene in the whole game (I hope that it runs smoothly with older computers...). Anyway, I hope you like it, and happy holidays!

This will certainly be a very stylish game. Looks awesome :)

Btw, Platonic solids=Cthulhu.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 11 Jan 2018, 22:03
Awwww...But stereotyped purplely-written lowlife thugs is an awesome Lovecraft trope!!!

Agreed! But don't worry, there will be at least one tough street kid hanging around in Orne's Gangway, and hopefully also a band of muggers. 

By the way, nice work on Chronicle of Innsmouth, I was naturally very interested to see how it turned out!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Surdy on 18 Jan 2018, 18:05
Can't wait Please, hurry up :D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 13 Feb 2018, 13:51
Hello again, just realized it's been over a month since last udpate...

Anyways, now it's time for some announcements:

First of all, the game has a sound designer! Antti is a very talented sound designer, who's been working mostly on television and movies. We have also worked together earlier, and he's a great guy, so I'm very happy that he's onboard. Now I can focus more on the other aspects of the game, and don't have to worry about the audio that much. 

Secondly, the game has a composer! Drum roll...

Troy Sterling Nies has agreed to compose the music for The Witch House!

I had the pleasure of meeting Troy at the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival last year, and I'm thrilled that he was interested in The Witch House. Troy has worked on several H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society's projects, including the feature films The Whisperer in Darkness and The Call of Cthulhu. You can listen Troy's music on his Bandcamp-page:  (https://troysterlingnies.bandcamp.com/)https://troysterlingnies.bandcamp.com/

I couldn't be happier about our little team! So no new screenshots this time, eventhough the game has progressed nicely lately. And also thanks for the people who have contacted me and offered their help in the audio department!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 24 Feb 2018, 05:00
Any new eye-candy screens? ^^
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 27 Feb 2018, 08:13
Any new eye-candy screens? ^^

There are some new backgrounds, but most of them are missing final tweaks or characters, so I won't show them yet.

But okay, here's one, maybe not the most visual or exciting background, but it shows one section of the Miskatonic University's library:

(https://i.imgur.com/ZSECdmw.jpg)

Good luck finding your book! :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 27 Feb 2018, 13:40
Very nice! 8-)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 27 Feb 2018, 13:42
Nice, even if a library of an university have to be some sort of classification (numbers of books, order by author, order by argument etc.)

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 27 Feb 2018, 17:30
Nice, even if a library of an university have to be some sort of classification (numbers of books, order by author, order by argument etc.)

Sure! The six(!) library rooms are separated by the genre (fiction, occult, biology, physics etc). Currently the system is that you can hover over the books with the mouse cursor, and it will automaticly give you the first letter of the author. So that way it's relatively easy to spot the book you want. But you need to know what you are seacrhing for the book to appear.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 27 Feb 2018, 22:44
Troy has worked on several H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society's projects, including the feature films The Whisperer in Darkness and The Call of Cthulhu.

That is indeed amazing news because both of those movies were incredible but especially the all-important music in Call Of Cthulhu. Being a silent film and all the music was a main star instead of an extra and I remember it being awesome.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Dragatar on 14 Mar 2018, 17:00
Release date?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 15 Mar 2018, 07:18
Release date?

I wish I knew! Unfortunately I'm not able to work on the game full-time, so there will be gaps in the progress. For example right now I have some other projects to finish, but I think I can get back to the game in a couple of weeks.

Let's say that the release date is sometime in 2019!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 17 Apr 2018, 18:33
Another screenshot!

(https://i.imgur.com/8Dnoxrv.jpg)

This is the Miskatonic University's basement, where the Special Collection is temporarily stored. Reading these special tomes will give Walter knowledge of the occult at the cost of sanity.

So the game is now progressing again, slowly but surely...

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Pinback on 18 Apr 2018, 04:43
I'm so late to this thread but I gotta say - the dream sequence animations look FANTASTIC!

Great atmosphere in general too!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 18 Apr 2018, 06:22
Good lights!

Maybe the Necronomicon book should look more mean...
_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 18 Apr 2018, 07:43
I'm so late to this thread but I gotta say - the dream sequence animations look FANTASTIC!

Thanks, nice to hear that!

Maybe the Necronomicon book should look more mean...

Yes, I might tweak it a bit later. There are six special tomes that you can study, and they will have their own graphics. So when I do the other books, I might adjust the Necronomicon as well. But in this game it won't bound in human flesh and have a scary face, like in the Evil Dead-series. According to Lovecraft, the Miskatonic University's copy of the Necronomicon is the latin translation, printed in Spain in the 17th century. So it's appereance is much more like an regular, very old book. But I understand you point!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: FireFlower on 18 Apr 2018, 10:41
Looks like a nice game with some interesting features.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 19 Apr 2018, 00:36
Armitage must trust Walter an awful lot to leave him alone with the necromicon. And He could unlock the window to sneak in later. Though I imagine that when Walter's done that Armitage will put the necromicon back behind the locked door at the left side of the screen with all the other forbidden books.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 25 Apr 2018, 20:01
Looks like a nice game with some interesting features.

Thanks!

Armitage must trust Walter an awful lot to leave him alone with the necromicon. And He could unlock the window to sneak in later. Though I imagine that when Walter's done that Armitage will put the necromicon back behind the locked door at the left side of the screen with all the other forbidden books.

That's pretty close! I don't want to spoil too much, but you need to reserve a time to study the Special Collection, and Armitage gives that only if he is convinced your studies require access to the books. There's other stuff also happening in that room, but I won't go there now! :-D

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Surdy on 28 May 2018, 09:16
And what about the other minor characters of the short story like Desrochers, Choynski, Mazurewicz & Elwood? :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 29 May 2018, 19:00
And what about the other minor characters of the short story like Desrochers, Choynski, Mazurewicz & Elwood? :)

Good question! Joe Mazurewicz is in the game, and he has a quite big role in it, as he knows a lot of the lodging house's history. Also Elwood will be in the game, but I haven't yet added him. But Elwood will also have a big part in the later part of the game, sometimes you can stay at his room, if the disturbances get too rough. But no plans for Desrochers or Choynski... Maybe they will be added in DLC! :-D

By the way, sorry for the radio silence, but been busy with other (paid) work... But looks like I can make nice progress later in summer.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Ghostcat on 30 May 2018, 00:02
Good to hear, can't wait for this one.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 30 May 2018, 07:50
How many other places will there be for Walter to sleep? Most places at Miskatonic university would likely be closed late at night.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 30 May 2018, 15:59
How many other places will there be for Walter to sleep? Most places at Miskatonic university would likely be closed late at night.

Walter can sleep at his home, and later in game when Elwood moves in, he can stay at his place (if Elwood is around himself). But those are the only places right now where Walter can sleep. I have thought about having the possibility to sleep out in the city bench at night, if Walter is tired enough (and ofcourse all kinds of nasty things can happen then), but let's see if it ends up in the game. Not a priority!

Shops, universities and other facilities are closed at night, some of them are also closed on weekends.

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 01 Jul 2018, 09:53
Spanish adventure game site Indiefence has an article about The Witch House, check it out here:

http://indiefence.miguelrfervenza.com (http://indiefence.miguelrfervenza.com)

The article is in Spanish, but if you can't understand it, you can look at the pretty pictures it has!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 02 Jul 2018, 22:55
Looks utterly awesome...

When will it be complete? ;-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 03 Jul 2018, 16:22
Looks utterly awesome...

When will it be complete? ;-D

Thanks! Hopefully in 2019, but no promises yet... 
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 07 Sep 2018, 08:16
Hi again and sorry for the silence!

The summer was a busy time for me, and the game didn't progress that much, but now it's getting better. I've started to do the ending, but I won't spoil it with screenshots. Because the game isn't strictly linear, it takes a lot of time to make it work in every scenario, but it's starting to shape up. There are some parts missing from the middle of the game too, but now you can at least play it from start to end. Anyway, here is a older screenshot from Orne's Gangway. People who have read the short story know what's going on there.

(https://i.imgur.com/r8rUAom.jpg)

It's still bit work-in-progress, there will be some more residents hanging around. Currently Walter is trying to dig up some information from a tough street kid.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 07 Sep 2018, 11:37

Nice background Rongel, so old-provincial! ;)

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: VampireWombat on 07 Sep 2018, 12:55
Obviously I need to read the story eventually. The Masters of Horror episode and rock opera haven't provided me with any information to have a clue about the new background.
Looks very nice.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 09 Sep 2018, 14:07
I hope you wrote the street kid's dialog in the clueless and stereotypical way that Lovecraft wrote how the kind of people he had never talked to talked!

I really strived for that tone while writing the English version of Chronicle Of Innsmouth, especially with the way the Innsmouth smugglers talked as if every day in Innsmouth was "Talk Like A Pirate Day". And the voice-actors totally understood how to pull off their lines without any direction from me at all. It was almost scary how much their performances matched the voices I heard in my head while writing the lines.

Gonna be even more interesting in the sequel now where I'm writing lines spoken as if... REDACTED
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 09 Sep 2018, 14:42
this background looks very cool, I'm very excited for the full game :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 09 Sep 2018, 15:48
Nice background Rongel, so old-provincial! ;)

Thanks! It depicts poorer part of the city where the Polish immigrants live. Online image search and research really comes in handy, when imagining late 1920's Arkham.

Obviously I need to read the story eventually. The Masters of Horror episode and rock opera haven't provided me with any information to have a clue about the new background.
Looks very nice.

It think the location was mentioned only couple of times in the short story, but in the game it's importance is boosted a bit.

I hope you wrote the street kid's dialog in the clueless and stereotypical way that Lovecraft wrote how the kind of people he had never talked to talked!

I really strived for that tone while writing the English version of Chronicle Of Innsmouth, especially with the way the Innsmouth smugglers talked as if every day in Innsmouth was "Talk Like A Pirate Day". And the voice-actors totally understood how to pull off their lines without any direction from me at all. It was almost scary how much their performances matched the voices I heard in my head while writing the lines.

Gonna be even more interesting in the sequel now where I'm writing lines spoken as if... REDACTED

Yes, the final, polished dialog is something I may need help with. Old accents and phrases are a bit difficult for a non-native English speaker. I haven't played the new version of Chronicle of Innsmouth with the voice actors, but it sounds interesting. And even more interesting is to hear about the sequel!

this background looks very cool, I'm very excited for the full game :)

Thanks selmiak! Me too :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 14 Sep 2018, 16:51
Looking forward to this!!!

Have you created the main sprites? :)

I recall the witch from a while back.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 15 Sep 2018, 09:26
Looking forward to this!!!

Have you created the main sprites? :)

I recall the witch from a while back.

Nice to hear that!

If you mean the main characters, then yes. I think Walter's friend Elwood is the only main character that is still missing. There should also be quite a lot of Arkham citizens and students, so that takes some time.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 23 Oct 2018, 17:13
Hi all!

I really like when people post making-of gifs from their upcoming games, so I wanted to make one too! Here you can see Miskatonic River waterfront, and the Unvisited Island with the mysterious standing stones. I probably still need to work on it a bit, but here's the background anyway:

(https://i.imgur.com/DvEa6b9.gif)

There will be some subtle background animations that you can see here in the almost finished version:

(https://i.imgur.com/6Vnsdaw.gif)

And like most of the locations, this too will have three different versions depending the time of the day, so a lot of work to be done... But last month has been very productive, and I've been able to concentrate fully on the game, which is a nice change!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 23 Oct 2018, 17:23
Beautiful background, I'd love to see the other versions! Must indeed be a lot of work to have different day time in your game.

It's always a pleasure to see updates of your game :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 23 Oct 2018, 17:56

Look, the chimneys are smoking!  8-0

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 23 Oct 2018, 18:40
Do the day and night versions use different rooms, or is it just the graphics that are different? And how is the passage of time handled? If you go AFK and stay in the same room will time still progress? The screenshot looks awesome. Will Walter be able to get his hands on a fishing rod, (or a skiff) and if so, can he fish anywhere with a significant body of water or just at a few locations? Plus a fishing rod can always be useful for various puzzles. :grin:
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 24 Oct 2018, 07:53
Beautiful background, I'd love to see the other versions! Must indeed be a lot of work to have different day time in your game.

It's always a pleasure to see updates of your game :)

Thanks, very nice to hear that! Currently I have made a rough evening version of it, but the night version is still missing. I've finally realized that it's better to not try to finish them, if there's a chance that there will be still some changes coming. If  I edit the day version, I have to fix the other ones too. So I can't yet show all the different variations. I might do it later, the evening version will be quite atmospheric because the city lights and the water reflections!


Look, the chimneys are smoking!  8-0


They are! I would love to add also some background animations to the waterfront opposite side: trucks, people walking etc, but I there's tons of more critical stuff to do.

Do the day and night versions use different rooms, or is it just the graphics that are different? And how is the passage of time handled? If you go AFK and stay in the same room will time still progress? The screenshot looks awesome. Will Walter be able to get his hands on a fishing rod, (or a skiff) and if so, can he fish anywhere with a significant body of water or just at a few locations? Plus a fishing rod can always be useful for various puzzles. :grin:

Day and night versions use the same room. There is a clock ticking in the background all the time (1 real minute = 1 hour in game) and when it's time for change, the screen will fade in and out, and all the changes happen during the fade. So if you leave the keyboard, it's best to pause the game first. For the second question, no plans for fishing minigame yet! There will be a fisherman though, so you can watch him fish :-D. I had to look up what skiff meant, and yes, it's possible!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 24 Oct 2018, 09:46

Day and night versions use the same room. There is a clock ticking in the background all the time (1 real minute = 1 hour in game) and when it's time for change, the screen will fade in and out, and all the changes happen during the fade.


Oh, it's like the old Dark Seed!



_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 25 Oct 2018, 16:03

Oh, it's like the old Dark Seed!


Hopefully not! I've never played Dark Seed, but it seems to have a quite infamous reputation because of the strict three day time limit. In The Witch House you have sixty days so there shouldn't be any rush.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 27 Oct 2018, 11:36
this is beautiful. Only the paved path in the foreground could also be a stone wall. Maybe add some papers or other trash to make the path flat. or widen and flatten the individual stones, I think they are not in perspective. Maybe add a tree on the right that casts a shadow over the path, that should make easier to read.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 28 Oct 2018, 08:59
this is beautiful. Only the paved path in the foreground could also be a stone wall. Maybe add some papers or other trash to make the path flat. or widen and flatten the individual stones, I think they are not in perspective. Maybe add a tree on the right that casts a shadow over the path, that should make easier to read.

That's a valid criticism and a good point. I noticed that something was wrong with the pavement when I was drawing it, but kind of let it go, and moved on. But it shouldn't be that hard to fix, I think I'll add it to the to-do list. Thanks for the observation!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Hobbes on 28 Oct 2018, 13:55
Really looking forward to this game! The inclusion of a day-night cycle adds a lot of manual labour but in a horror-game, it adds so much! I loved the "safe" moments in a game like Alan Wake where you explored the town during daylight. Then, when night fell, all bets were off.

Keep up the great work. Your pixel art looks amazing!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 01 Nov 2018, 14:03
Really looking forward to this game! The inclusion of a day-night cycle adds a lot of manual labour but in a horror-game, it adds so much! I loved the "safe" moments in a game like Alan Wake where you explored the town during daylight. Then, when night fell, all bets were off.

Keep up the great work. Your pixel art looks amazing!

Thanks, really appreciate that! Now, back to drawing!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: ManicMatt on 16 Nov 2018, 21:30
Yeah, that park is wonderful, it's really relaxing and detailed!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 23 Feb 2019, 10:24
Hi all & happy 2019!

It's been way too long since my last update, sorry about that! Good news is that the game has progressed further in the silence. I don't want to reveal the new backgrounds now, so here's couple of new characters and their walk cycles.

(https://i.imgur.com/zIhxDhU.gif) (https://i.imgur.com/EZeCiP0.gif)

(https://i.imgur.com/U4LZgoh.png) (https://i.imgur.com/sNzVi9X.png)

The first one is an Arkham beat cop, possibly of Irish descent. There is some functionality with him, he can help you with the plot and if you get robbed (well the robbing is a planned feature, not yet in the game) The woman is Anastasia Wolejko, a Polish laundry worker that Walter might meet at some point.

Some time ago, I made an impulse purchase, and I bought Asesprite pixel art/animation software. Been using that with the characters and I've been quite happy about it. Seems to be bit faster to use that than my previous Photoshop / After Effects routine.

I'll try to make my next update sooner next time!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 23 Feb 2019, 13:39

They looks fine, Rongel!  ;)

Usually HPL's tales are short of female characters...

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 05 Apr 2019, 15:47
Non-spoilery screenshot:

 (https://i.imgur.com/lBIIVQ2.jpg)

Walter can have a decent lunch or a refresing coffee at the local coffee house. Both options raise Sanity points, but as a poor student, Walter can't afford to go there all the time. The new location is probably more important if you choose the straight, non-occultistic (is that a word?) route.


They looks fine, Rongel!  ;)

Usually HPL's tales are short of female characters...


Thanks! Anastasia Wolejko was written very well in my opinion in The Dreams in the Witch House. Lovecraft mentions her only couple of times, but her fate feels very real. But you're right, luckily the game is an adaptation and not all things are exactly the same in it  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Dualnames on 05 Apr 2019, 20:33
How have i not seen this!! Looks fantastic!!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 06 Apr 2019, 15:03
Non-spoilery screenshot:

 (https://i.imgur.com/lBIIVQ2.jpg)

Walter can have a decent lunch or a refresing coffee at the local coffee house. Both options raise Sanity points, but as a poor student, Walter can't afford to go there all the time. The new location is probably more important if you choose the straight, non-occultistic (is that a word?) route.


They looks fine, Rongel!  ;)

Usually HPL's tales are short of female characters...


Thanks! Anastasia Wolejko was written very well in my opinion in The Dreams in the Witch House. Lovecraft mentions her only couple of times, but her fate feels very real. But you're right, luckily the game is an adaptation and not all things are exactly the same in it  :-D

Very much looking forward to this game when it comes out! The sign advertising tuna from Innsmouth is a nice touch. Anything nifty planned if Walter orders it?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: sofiaaq on 06 Apr 2019, 21:21
Wow, this looks amazing. I wanted to do a day-night cycle, too, but right now, the sheer amount of work that would take made me shy away from it. Great work, here! I hope to see it soon.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 07 Apr 2019, 09:14
How have i not seen this!! Looks fantastic!!

Thanks, nice to hear that!  :-D

Very much looking forward to this game when it comes out! The sign advertising tuna from Innsmouth is a nice touch. Anything nifty planned if Walter orders it?

Well spotted! Walter can only order breakfast, dinner lunch, or have a coffee. So it's up to the imagination of the player did Walter have the tuna. Also now that I think of it, before the authorities raided the place, Innsmouth tuna was probably quite excellent.

Wow, this looks amazing. I wanted to do a day-night cycle, too, but right now, the sheer amount of work that would take made me shy away from it. Great work, here! I hope to see it soon.

Thanks! Yes, it's a lot of "extra" work, but the game is progressing quite nicely now. Good luck to your project as well, looking good!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 11 Apr 2019, 11:34
this looks very nice. Just wondering, do I have a dirty mind (I do) or does that sign really say Coffee anal? Must taste pretty shitty lol
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 11 Apr 2019, 18:25
this looks very nice. Just wondering, do I have a dirty mind (I do) or does that sign really say Coffee anal? Must taste pretty shitty lol

 8-0 You sure have! Well, there might be others who see it that way too, so I might add a few extra pixels there. Then we can all have a nice coffee AND a donut!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 12 Sep 2019, 10:54
Hello there!

It's been ages since I last posted an update, so here's something new for you. I've been working a lot on the game recently, and it's starting to be actually fun to play! Still, a lot of work to be done, mostly because of the non-linear structure of the game, and balancing all the game mechanics and variables.

(https://i.imgur.com/Eaw8oMc.jpg)

This is a robbery! This encounter is a random event which may or may not happen. There are other encounters too, and I would love to add even more, but best to keep it simple for now. Walter can try to escape, even fight, and a planned feature is that he can file a report to police, and with some luck get back his money later on. So it's not Game Over when robbery happens. And no, there isn't a fight minigame!

(https://i.imgur.com/tt8qkPe.jpg)

What is going on here? Let's hope it's just a bad dream...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Laura Hunt on 12 Sep 2019, 11:04
Loving everything about this so far! How much longer are you going to make us wait for it? ;)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 12 Sep 2019, 11:16
Loving everything about this so far! How much longer are you going to make us wait for it? ;)

Thanks, nice to hear that! Maybe one year more...?  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 12 Sep 2019, 15:20
Take your time! I'm gladly waiting if that means mor features/encounters and better balancing  :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Laura Hunt on 12 Sep 2019, 16:42
Thanks, nice to hear that! Maybe one year more...?  :-D

Take your time! I'm gladly waiting if that means mor features/encounters and better balancing  :)

How dare you be logical and reasonable! We want pretty game now. :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 12 Sep 2019, 17:44

So it's not Game Over when robbery happens.

Game Over are possible in this game?

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 13 Sep 2019, 07:41
Game Over are possible in this game?

Yes, if Walter's hitpoints drop to zero before the May-Eve. Ofcourse you gain hitpoints when resting, eating, using medicine or potions. So it's not that easy to die.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 13 Sep 2019, 16:36
Can the robbery happen anywhere or is it more likely if Walter is in certain areas? For the fight and escape options is there a random number generated to determine success? The easiest option I would assume would be to hand over all your money, but would it be possible for Walter to store his money and other valuables in his room or Elwood's place and how would the  robber react?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 13 Sep 2019, 19:49
Can the robbery happen anywhere or is it more likely if Walter is in certain areas? For the fight and escape options is there a random number generated to determine success? The easiest option I would assume would be to hand over all your money, but would it be possible for Walter to store his money and other valuables in his room or Elwood's place and how would the  robber react?

Right now the robbery can happen when travelling at night around Arkham. There is a fancy random room that is generated when the encounter happens. It's quite simple at the moment, the robber might leave you some money by mistake. And if you're broke, there is nothing to lose. Walter isn't a fighter, so that's a bad option unless you have somekind of advantage.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 13 Sep 2019, 20:46
Right now the robbery can happen when travelling at night around Arkham. There is a fancy random room that is generated when the encounter happens. It's quite simple at the moment, they robber might leave you some money by mistake. And if you're broke, there is nothing to lose. Walter isn't a fighter, so that's a bad option unless you have somekind of advantage.

That makes sense about the fighting, even if Walter did have a knife or even a gun I imagine that he'd have to explain things to the police if he had to use it on some thug. But a fake gun might be enough to scare the thug off, (unless he can tell it's a fake).

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 02 Jan 2020, 10:43
Happy New Year!  :=

Here's a couple of GIFs to start the year: Alchemy and Chemistry GUIs.

Walter can make three different potions if he knows the recipes for them (or if he's very lucky). Basically the alchemy and chemistry are the same, so you can replace some of the required ingredients with synthetic substances.  For example you could use Pyrite instead of Fool's Gold if you have basic alchemy / chemistry knowledge. The actual "minigame" is very simple, you just add the right amont of ingredients and the potion will be distilled automatically.

Chemistry:
(https://i.imgur.com/NfmLZEW.gif)

Alchemy:
(https://i.imgur.com/fjDyPNV.gif)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 02 Jan 2020, 11:15
Beautiful gifs  :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 03 Jan 2020, 08:41
Beautiful gifs  :)

Thanks Matti! It's a pain to make a decent GIF, but I guess it's still the best format for a quick animation preview.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Cassiebsg on 03 Jan 2020, 13:51
I agree, those animations look great.  (nod)
And yes, gifs are a pain, but seems to still be the only option to display an animation short of using video...
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Gendgi on 08 Jan 2020, 16:25
oh man this looks brilliant, you had me at lovecraft lol but the graphics look amazing also  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 17 Jun 2020, 08:10
Hello there!

Still alive and kicking! It's been ages since I last updated this thread, I'm sorry about that. First I had too much other work, and after that I started working on the game so furiously, that I had no patience to do updates. So the good news is that for the last 1.5  months I've been working on "The Witch House" full-time. Currently working on the ending, which is a big part of the game. There are several different endings and combinations of endings, depending on player's actions. So it's a lot of work, but finally it's starting to shape up.

And exciting news considering the music! Troy Sterling Nies (who composed The Whisperer in Darkness and The Call of Cthulhu films for example) has started composing music for the game, and it sounds great! Really exciting to see the game coming together.

I don't want to show too much of the ending (at least not yet), so here's a still from Elwood's room:

(https://i.imgur.com/q5sPEgi.jpg)

Elwood is Walter's neighbour, and a fellow university student. Walter can relax at his place, and even spend the night to avoid the nightly terrors at his own room.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Laura Hunt on 17 Jun 2020, 09:01
Great news! I'm so hyped for this ;-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 17 Jun 2020, 09:30
Great news! I'm so hyped for this ;-D

Thanks! I'm hyped for Winter's Night!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: ToeKnee on 17 Jun 2020, 17:28
So exciting.... Well done with awesome graphics and what will undoubtedly be great game-play... Once you finish it you will have something for the rest of your life you can be proud of and 'own'.... well done
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 17 Jun 2020, 20:10
So exciting.... Well done with awesome graphics and what will undoubtedly be great game-play... Once you finish it you will have something for the rest of your life you can be proud of and 'own'.... well done
Thanks for the nice words!  ;-D There is still a lot to do, so I need to keep my feet on the ground.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SarahLiz on 25 Jun 2020, 21:56
Whew!  I’m so relieved that you’re still working on this game—I was getting worried!

Every update/new screenshot looks so, so good!!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 26 Jun 2020, 08:01
Whew!  I’m so relieved that you’re still working on this game—I was getting worried!

Every update/new screenshot looks so, so good!!

Thanks, very nice to hear that!

The game is far beyond being abandoned, but real life and other work have a habit of delaying it. I'll try to post updates more often, so that I won't cause any unnecessary worries.  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 10 Sep 2020, 08:56
Hi everybody!

I wanted to share something new, so here's a GIF of the Miskatonic river and the Unvisited Island. What are those mysterious lights on the island? Is someone there?

(https://i.imgur.com/JukeYvL.gif)

It's been about two years(!) since I shared the day version of the same location, so it was about time. Fortunately the evening and night versions have been completed long ago, but now there's little more activity on the island.

I've been working on the game now full-time for several months and this quote by Tom Cargill starts to make sense: The first 90 percent of the code accounts for the first 90 percent of the development time. The remaining 10 percent of the code accounts for the other 90 percent of the development time.

Because I started to make the game with relatively no experience in coding, I think I have redone it now several times. Nice thing is that when you condense a huge block of bad script into a nice, tight package, it's kind of purifying feeling, like you just cleaned your house. And the game is now much easier to work on and edit, when it's standing on a solid ground.

But a very daunting task is looming in the horizon... Deciding how to publish the game! It is something that I need to focus on quite soon, and make some tough decisions!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: KyriakosCH on 10 Sep 2020, 12:40
Looks great :)

By the way, this story is among those which I translated, for the new Greek edition of HPL's complete works ^_^
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 10 Sep 2020, 15:22
Looks great :)

Thanks! I haven't read the story in few years, and at this point I kind of dread it. Who knows what I have missed!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: TheFrighter on 10 Sep 2020, 17:43

I wanted to share something new, so here's a GIF of the Miskatonic river and the Unvisited Island. What are those mysterious lights on the island? Is someone there?

But a very daunting task is looming in the horizon... Deciding how to publish the game! It is something that I need to focus on quite soon, and make some tough decisions!


Are you planning to make it commercial? Cool idea... but personally I don't like Steam...

_
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 11 Sep 2020, 07:47
Are you planning to make it commercial? Cool idea... but personally I don't like Steam...

That is the idea currently, and it could make further development possible. There are many places where you can buy and sell games, so you could probably get it from somewhere else too.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Dualnames on 23 Sep 2020, 16:58
I think the game looks marvelous <3, would definitely buy it!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 24 Sep 2020, 07:59
I think the game looks marvelous <3, would definitely buy it!

Hey, thanks! Great to hear that from an acclaimed AGSer!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: FormosaFalanster on 28 Sep 2020, 09:30
Very impressed at the idea that you are making an "open world" game! Coupled with the survivalist element, this is very innovative! Glad to see a game is coming that is actually different from the usual ones!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 28 Sep 2020, 16:00
Very impressed at the idea that you are making an "open world" game! Coupled with the survivalist element, this is very innovative! Glad to see a game is coming that is actually different from the usual ones!

Hey thanks, I like it too!  :=

I think the short story fits well into an open world game. But I can see why people don't do these kinds of game more often, it's a horrible amount of work! And if you change one thing, it's probably going to break ten other things. Still, doing something a bit different is a big motivator for me.

Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: selmiak on 02 Oct 2020, 21:40
Happy New Year!  :=

Here's a couple of GIFs to start the year: Alchemy and Chemistry GUIs.

Walter can make three different potions if he knows the recipes for them (or if he's very lucky). Basically the alchemy and chemistry are the same, so you can replace some of the required ingredients with synthetic substances.  For example you could use Pyrite instead of Fool's Gold if you have basic alchemy / chemistry knowledge. The actual "minigame" is very simple, you just add the right amont of ingredients and the potion will be distilled automatically.

Chemistry:
(https://i.imgur.com/NfmLZEW.gif)

Alchemy:
(https://i.imgur.com/fjDyPNV.gif)

this animation is looking so beautiful, can't wait to play that game!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 03 Oct 2020, 12:47
this animation is looking so beautiful, can't wait to play that game!

Thanks! Yes, the alchemy / chemistry animations work well as a GIFs.  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 11 Oct 2020, 04:09
As a tester, and after many playthroughs, I just finally achieved what I'm guessing is one of the "best" endings.

SO satisfying to get that, but, this is Lovecraft, so I'm happy that it didn't let me rest completely at ease.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 12 Oct 2020, 09:17
As a tester, and after many playthroughs, I just finally achieved what I'm guessing is one of the "best" endings.

SO satisfying to get that, but, this is Lovecraft, so I'm happy that it didn't let me rest completely at ease.

Yes, the occult threat can be postponed, but never won completely. Enjoy your victory while it lasts!  :-D
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SarahLiz on 12 Oct 2020, 22:38
Oh, I have been very excited for this one.  I’m sure it’s difficult to decide where/how/if to make it commercial, but I can tell you that I for one, would buy it no matter where you sell or or for what price.  It looks AMAZING.  Keep up the great work!!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 13 Oct 2020, 09:09
Oh, I have been very excited for this one.  I’m sure it’s difficult to decide where/how/if to make it commercial, but I can tell you that I for one, would buy it no matter where you sell or or for what price.  It looks AMAZING.  Keep up the great work!!

Hey, thanks! Very nice to hear that!  :-D

Here's something brand new, straight from the Photoshop:

(https://i.imgur.com/n1774ac.png)

I finally took the task of replacing some of the placeholder graphics (which I already had accustomed to). This shot is the general city graphic that shows in certain city events. Big part of it will be blocked by an ugly text box, so I decided to share the whole thing here.  :-D

Now, back to drawing the evening and night versions.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 13 Oct 2020, 11:41
Yeah, don't put the textbox in the middle of it. That's too much of a shame. Maybe put the text along the top or bottom of the screen?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matti on 13 Oct 2020, 12:08
Beautiful background!

If the screen will be covered by a textbox, at least make it a beautiful textbox, not an ugly one  ;)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Danvzare on 13 Oct 2020, 15:15
Beautiful background!

Indeed. That's a gorgeous piece of artwork. I can't stress that enough.  8-0
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 14 Oct 2020, 07:25
Yeah, don't put the textbox in the middle of it. That's too much of a shame. Maybe put the text along the top or bottom of the screen?

Luckily some of the events and actions, like going to the coffee shop don't take so much space. Also, I might use the picture somewhere else too, now that I have it. It's a positive problem, much worse would be if I had to hide an ugly background with a big text box!  :-D

Beautiful background!

If the screen will be covered by a textbox, at least make it a beautiful textbox, not an ugly one  ;)

Thanks, I try!

Indeed. That's a gorgeous piece of artwork. I can't stress that enough.  8-0

Thank you. I'm happy how it turned out be too, although it took a over week to finish it (including the evening and night versions). The bad thing is that when I look at some of the early art, it pales in comparison. But fixing old art to match newer stuff is a doomed cycle, and I don't want to go there, at least yet!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: mkennedy on 14 Oct 2020, 18:54
Yeah, don't put the textbox in the middle of it. That's too much of a shame. Maybe put the text along the top or bottom of the screen?
Luckily some of the events and actions, like going to the coffee shop don't take so much space. Also, I might use the picture somewhere else too, now that I have it. It's a positive problem, much worse would be if I had to hide an ugly background with a big text box!  :-D
Beautiful background!
If the screen will be covered by a textbox, at least make it a beautiful textbox, not an ugly one  ;)
Thanks, I try!
Maybe an option to have a bit of a pause before the text box pops up?
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 14 Oct 2020, 21:25
How about: After the player clicks to dismiss the textbox, they can view the full screen for as long as they like and there is a "CLICK TO RETURN TO THE MAP" message subtly at the bottom so they click again to return to the map? It's only one more click and these events don't happen so often that this will become annoying I feel.

OR!!! I have just had a further idea.

I was never quite sure when the game action was paused when I was testing, and the passage of time is quite vital in the game. If I went away to do something I would always superstitiously save the game and then reload when I came back to make sure no time had passed.

You could include a PAUSE feature in the game and, while it is paused, show this beautiful screen with the above mentioned "CLICK TO RETURN TO GAME" message unobtrusively at the bottom.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 17 Oct 2020, 10:06
Maybe an option to have a bit of a pause before the text box pops up?

I think I'll make the fade a bit slower, and maybe add a very short pause. A suitable sound effect may also help, so that the pause feels justified.

I was never quite sure when the game action was paused when I was testing, and the passage of time is quite vital in the game. If I went away to do something I would always superstitiously save the game and then reload when I came back to make sure no time had passed.

You could include a PAUSE feature in the game and, while it is paused, show this beautiful screen with the above mentioned "CLICK TO RETURN TO GAME" message unobtrusively at the bottom.

Yes, time management is important in the game, and a pause feature is a must have. Infact, there is already one (activated by pressing spacebar), but there's no indicators or hints of it yet. Opening the menu also pauses the game. I'll think about the pause-background suggestion!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: arbi on 17 Oct 2020, 13:14
This thread finally pushed me to register here to say two things:

1. I really enjoy the WIP stuff you are posting - it is really helpful to me.
2. There is not enough content about witches in the world.

All in all, good job so far. Will cheer on from afar.  ;)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 19 Oct 2020, 07:27
This thread finally pushed me to register here to say two things:

1. I really enjoy the WIP stuff you are posting - it is really helpful to me.
2. There is not enough content about witches in the world.

All in all, good job so far. Will cheer on from afar.  ;)

Thanks! Really nice to hear you are enjoying the WIP stuff, and I'm glad you find it helpful!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: splat44 on 07 Nov 2020, 20:06
I'll say super wow graphics!

If you ever need some play or beta testers, I'll more than glad to help out. I done few of them on free and commercial ags games
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 09 Nov 2020, 07:28
I'll say super wow graphics!

If you ever need some play or beta testers, I'll more than glad to help out. I done few of them on free and commercial ags games

Hey, thanks! When the game is a bit further, I probably need more "fresh" testers. I'll try to keep you in mind!

Currently I have some other work, so the progress is a bit slower than in the last few months. The good thing is that the game progressed at super-speed during those last months!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Mandle on 27 Apr 2021, 11:27
I just finished proofreading through and correcting the MASSIVE TRS of this game and I sent out the following message to several YouTubers that I know who LOVE Lovecraft games. I thought it a good enough plug for the game to just post it here and also bump this thread back into public awareness:

Just thought I'd give you a heads-up here about a new Lovecraft game that is coming out soon.
It's been made by a lone developer who has done everything on the game on their own, graphics, animation, story, coding, puzzles, and so on, and has not been widely advertised, if at all. I've been onboard along the way as a play-tester and now, in the final stages, as proofreader, correcting the script for the past few weeks and now that's done and the game is almost complete.
The name of the game is "The Dreams In The Witch House" and follows the story of Walter Gilman, a new student at Miskatonic U., and also the plot of the original story to some degree.
It is a very unique game in that it's an open-world Lovecraft horror-survival game with a point-and-click adventure game interface.
By "open-world" I mean that you are free, at all times, to roam the world of Arkham as you please. The game doesn't push you down the corridor of the story that it wants you to follow. I replayed the game during many play-testings and always found something new which led me down a new path, sometimes much to my detriment.
Every action you make fluidly affects the direction of the game. There is no BS "She will remember this." text that turns out to mean nothing at the end like most games these days that just climax in the same scene no matter what choices you made.
In fact, the horror-survival aspect of the game guarantees that you will never play the same game twice. There are deadlines you can meet at Miskatonic for study and lectures and tests and get good grades OR you can concentrate on your thesis OR you can just work some jobs and earn some money OR you can go full-time investigating the central mystery OR you can do a combination of any of the above OR you can just sleep in bed all day if it's too rainy to go out OR go homeless and try to survive by dumpster-diving OR... just do whatever you want to. There is even a possibility of dating and romance if you are so inclined, and several friendships to be made along the way, or not, as you wish.
There IS some of the inevitability of Lovecraft stories in that the game DOES have an end to it after 2-3 months of in-game time, after which you get several cutscenes showing your eventual fate, and the fates of the people you have met along the way but, unlike most games that boast "branching stories", the endings always make sense based upon your actions and the reactions of the... ummmm... well I'll leave that for you to find out.
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 27 Apr 2021, 16:06
Thanks for the guerilla marketing, Mandle! Those were some nice words.

So a quick comment on the progress while we're here! I haven't posted anything in ages, but the game has progressed slowly, but steadily all the time. And now with Mandle's fixes, it's much more pleasent experience when the irritating typos and awkward grammar errors have been ironed out. My current work will end in a couple of weeks, and after that I can commit myself to the game full-time. So hopefully this will be the beginning of the big push, that will complete the game.

Also, here's a new promo pic!

(https://i.imgur.com/Ao9lkPx.png)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Matagot on 27 Apr 2021, 17:30
This game is looking outstanding! I'll be keeping any eye on your progress.
It's reminding me a little like Dark Seed, but I think that game was also based on Lovecraft.

Keep going!  :) :) :) :) :) :)
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SarahLiz on 28 Apr 2021, 19:33
The title screen looks really, really good.  Creepy, but not TOO creepy.  I'm glad you'll have more time coming up to devote to the game so we'll finally be able to play it soon(ish?)...I'm guessing your "early 2021" date no longer applies!   :P

Anywho, I know you've said you can die mid-game or at technically any point if you're not keeping your character's needs met, but assuming you get to the end-end without dying, how long would you estimate that the gameplay is?  I like that you have plenty of "time/days" to complete what you need to, and that you have the ability to pause the game (something I'd definitely require!).  I can't wait to see more as you near the end of development! 
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 29 Apr 2021, 17:13
This game is looking outstanding! I'll be keeping any eye on your progress.
It's reminding me a little like Dark Seed, but I think that game was also based on Lovecraft.

Keep going!  :) :) :) :) :) :)
Thanks, nice to hear that! I guess there is some similarity, in both games there's a building at the heart of the story. And an ordinary person who get sucked into cosmic horror.

The title screen looks really, really good.  Creepy, but not TOO creepy.
Thanks, I'm quite happy with that pic too, it kind of sets the mood and tone for the game nicely.

Quote
I'm glad you'll have more time coming up to devote to the game so we'll finally be able to play it soon(ish?)...I'm guessing your "early 2021" date no longer applies!   :P
Oops, I forgot that I gave that deadline, need to fix it! So let's now say the game will be ready this year.  :-D

Quote
Anywho, I know you've said you can die mid-game or at technically any point if you're not keeping your character's needs met, but assuming you get to the end-end without dying, how long would you estimate that the gameplay is?  I like that you have plenty of "time/days" to complete what you need to, and that you have the ability to pause the game (something I'd definitely require!).  I can't wait to see more as you near the end of development!
The gameplay duration varies depending on players actions, but it's surprisingly high. When I'm testing the game and breeze through it, skipping dialog etc, it will take me a couple of days. So I'd say the duration is around 10-20 hours, which is a lot more than I thought it would be, when starting the project. On the other hand, if you just sleep, rest and skip everything, you could probably do it in a few hours!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: SarahLiz on 29 Apr 2021, 23:00
10-20 hours is awesome!!  I can’t wait! 
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: Postmodern Adventures on 30 Apr 2021, 11:12
I've been waiting for this game sincer your first post (2017 wow!). I'm curious about the mechanics and I'm in love with the visuals. Good luck and best wishes for the final stretch of the development!
Title: Re: The Witch House
Post by: rongel on 01 May 2021, 08:18
I've been waiting for this game sincer your first post (2017 wow!). I'm curious about the mechanics and I'm in love with the visuals. Good luck and best wishes for the final stretch of the development!

Very nice to hear that, thanks for the support! Yes, the first post might have been in 2017, but I started making the game at least a year before, maybe two! I defend myself by saying that I've done other stuff too, and in some years it wasn't possible for me to work on the game so much. And at first I knew nothing about coding...