Category Archives: Development

New beginnings

Well, it’s been a while. As you can see, I’ve given the site a makeover. I think this new theme looks pretty spiffy, don’t you?

I’ve also, sadly, disabled comments as I’ve been swamped with spam lately. I probably will have to use Akismet at some point, but not now. For now, if you would like to contact me with your thoughts, my email is on the right.

What’s the occassion? Well, there’s the fact that The Marionette has been translated into Italian by the very talented girls at RuM Corp.(se). You can download it at I hear it’s been getting very positive reviews from Italian gamers, so that is very heartening!

In other news, it seems I’m mostly alone again. Three years is a very long time. People fall out of touch in that time; it’s a fact of life, and Team Effigy has always been a restless, shifting entity.

However, this does not spell doom for Out of Time. That particular game(s) is still being developed. The only difference is that I’ve had to scale it down. I’m back to using AGS, because it’s familiar to me. The good news is, that means scripting is moving along pretty quickly. (In response to a comment in one of the previous posts, I haven’t learned Java because I simply don’t have the time to learn a new language and code an engine from scratch.) After scripting the first few rooms, I’ll have to do up the sprites, and possibly a couple of cutscenes, and then I’ll have a tech demo ready to gather feedback about the gameplay. Hopefully, I’ll have learned from the mistakes of The Marionette!

That’s all for now. Hope to have better news in a couple months’ time.

Adventure games on mobile devices, part 2

My last post took at the look at the possibility of making simple adventure games using Google’s App Inventor, among other things. In the six months that followed, Google discontinued App Inventor – and then MIT revived it.

The impetus that made me look up App Inventor once more was, of all things, a Square Enix game called Imaginary Range. I’ve just completed Episode II, and I must say that I found it a very compelling form of interactive fiction. It’s more like an interactive comic, with some mini-games interspersed. I can definitely foresee more of something like this in the future of mobile adventure games. And I would love to be a part of it.

If you have a smartphone, why not download it and give it a go? It’s completely free, and runs on iOS and Android. If you do try it, let me know what you think in the comments section below.

On abandoned projects, and really slow ones

Ghost (of Once Upon a Crime fame – check it out) posted a great overview of why many indie games fall by the wayside. I know we at Team Effigy tend to fall victim to more than one of these. Click on the link for more:

Why Games Aren’t Made

Recently I received an email (thanks Paul) asking about the status of The Marionette’s voice acting project. The short answer is, we took a break, it’s back on track (super slowly). The long answer is below.

The reasons why the voice project is moving along at such a glacial pace is probably covered in the article linked above. I’m the one working on the voice project. Real life, paid work got in the way for a month or so, after which I took a few months off to slack my free time away. Real, unproductive slacking. Although it’s been to two years since the release of The Marionette, the 4-5 years spent working on it meant that almost all my free time was dedicated to it. I loved making The Marionette, but I have a lot of other things I’ve been wanting to do with my free time too.

So after that intensive period at work, I caved in and put aside the voice project for a while, always promising that I’d get back to it. At that point Eshana’s voice was all done, Martin’s was almost complete and Giuseppe’s was hitting a snag early on. Days turned into weeks into months, and that is why for more than half a year you haven’t heard from me on this.

About two months ago, I forced myself to contact Steve Poulton (Martin) and James Prior (Giuseppe) to ask if they could continue. I am forever thankful for their patience and understanding. Steve’s lines are all done (except for maybe one or two) and James’s are on their way (very slowly of course, because his work and mine are still occassionally getting in the way).

I don’t know how many of you are still reading this blog, but I do apologise for the sparse updates, and please be assured that we are still here, and still going.