Thursday, August 2, 2007

Busy, Busy...

Ossian Update
In recent weeks, the pace of my Ossian work has slowed, allowing me to make good progress on The Maimed God's Saga. However, the last couple weeks or so, Ossian has picked up again, slowing TMGS back down.

I learned my lesson about making predictions, so I'll just say I hope that something is announced soon. I imagine that there will be a minimum of three blogs that will become a fountain of good behind-the-scenes information once the go-ahead is given (and I confirm what can be said and when). Until then...

The Maimed God's Saga
I've really only made progress on TMGS in two areas since last post.

I've finished all dialogs, including Verona's 9000-word behemoth. I also had to slightly revise many of the other dialogs to account for her more fully-developed personality. And that's the main artistic development with the new dialogs - I finally feel that Verona is as interesting a character as Tancred. Before this, I only had the broadest strokes of her character in my head. Suffice it to say that a lot more became ironed out this past couple weeks. I can honestly say that male players will now have a kick-booty romance as well.

Oh, and the total word count for Act I comes to a final total of 34,265. That will undoubtedly fluctuate a bit as I edit during play-throughs, but it'll be pretty close.

I know most people reading this blog may be thinking something like, "C'mon, Tiberius, are you really sure about this music crap! What makes you think you can write music?"

The answers are "Yes" and "Because I've written hours of music for friends, quartets (in college), my wedding, and so forth." Yes, I'm an engineer (reluctantly), but I've actually had quite a bit of formal musical training at the college level - far more than formal literary training... and Ossian's actually paying me to do that!

Thus far, all my music has been composed in my head with the help of a keyboard, and I have a program that allows me to print sheet music that looks good. If I have the right tools, I have no doubt that I can compose a kick-ass score for TMGS. The problem is that the musical sound libraries that actually sound correct are expensive, and the sequencers aren't exactly cheap either. Nevertheless, after some e-mail exchanges with community composer David John, I'm convinced I know what I need, and I'm going to pull the plug on the purchases. As I've said, music composition is a hobby of mine beyond modding, so the expenditure is for more than just this. That's how I justify it anyway; at the very least, this will allow me to merge my two favorite hobbies.

Progress Matrix
I should say that I've done a minor amount of scripting. Basically, I've put the world map scripts together. However, I've remembered there's a little more scripting required than I at first believed. Therefore, the actual percentage for scripting in the chart has not changed.

I think I'm about one to two solid sessions from wrapping up Act I and beginning alpha testing. When I'll be able to get that time depends, in part, on Ossian and other commitments.

TMGS Progress Report (in %)

Act I Act II Act III
Area Design 100 0 0
Dialog 100 0 0
Blueprints 100 0 0
Scripting 35 0 0
Journals 100 0 0
World Map
Intro Movie


Anonymous said...

On the subject of music and sequencers...

Before going for any of the big shots (as your post seemed to imply), I'd suggest you look at some of the new players, such as Podium, REAPER or EnergyXT (v1.4.1, as 2.0 should still be considered beta). While not as feature-packed as their big brothers, they're notably cheaper (<$100), and their "workflow" (or paradigm or whatever they call it) is usually quite different and may or may not ease your creative process.

In case that can help you make the right choice for your needs, here's a link to a comprehensive list of sequencers (the ones I mentioned above are in). Remember that most have a trial version, so download the ones you're most interested in and try them out !

Alex said...

Wow, very cool! Composing music is something I wanted to do for Moonshadows after I took a course in composition and theory (2, actually) this past year...I got myself a keyboard and Sibelius Student edition for about $100, and it works pretty nicely. Of course, I don't really have the skill to do anything good...but it's a great tool, highly recommended. Plus, you're technically still a student, right? ;) So you should be able to get the student version cheap (the real thing is like $400-500, I believe) if you were so inclined.

Maerduin said...

I wish I knew more about recording and composition with a computer. Hells, I wish I knew more about music! I hope you'll let us hear what you create as you go.