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Black Feather Forest

edited August 2014 in Games showcase


Hey guys, I can finally tell you about an AC project I've been working on for a while now! It's called Black Feather Forest, a 2D adventure game inspired by true events, Haida mythology and things like True Detective, Fargo, Detective Grimoire, Kentucky Route Zero. It brings together many threads of ideas for games I've had over the years and ties it together with real-world influences.

You play as Sofia, a documentary maker, and together with your cameraman Caleb you travel to the town of Augier’s Peak, up in the wilderness of rural Canada, where three people have gone missing recently.You are free to travel around town, where you will meet a handful of inhabitants that all have their own reasons to help you discover what happened - or not. You gather clues by talking to people and combining pieces of evidence and statements to slowly try to figure out who or what is behind all this.

For now I've completed a demo that shows the first few locations of the game and sets up the story and gameplay. With that I hope to generate some interest that could lead into the further development of this title. I'll keep you guys updated on the progress and share some more insights about the development as I go along.




  • Hi hedgefield, I really like the drawing style! You draw all the graphics? Cool!
    Maybe you can share the demo or a video, so we can judge not with only 1 pic and few drafts.
    For now it looks promising! 
  • edited May 2014
    That looks really classy. Great Art work. The third image is not loading though. Im eager to see it :)

    Do tell us your intention. In which platform do you want to release it? Are you planing this as an one big piece or small episodes? Also this screenshot looks fantastic but what is you actuall screen size for the game?

    Great vibe overall.

  • 60? No one has any clues? (Don't give away your plot) Looking good, rather do 2d art than 3d any day.
  • very nice artwork ! interesting plot
  • edited June 2014
    Thanks for the kind words everyone!

    I'm doing this project by myself so far, yes, everything in AC and writing and drawing. It's a lot! Ha but I hope to make it a decent-sized game, about an hour or maybe two with several locations to visit, which I'll release as a single package on PC, Mac and Linux for a few dollars probably. Right now it runs fine on my native resolution of 1920x1080.

    I was in a bit of a rush to finish a demo for this for a conference submission, so now that I have some time to reflect on it I'll go back and add some features that I didn't have time to make yet so that I have a good benchmark for what the finished game should be, and I'll ofcourse share it with you guys here first :)

    And yeah the history around that place is pretty gruesome. They already found and arrested like two or three serial killers in the area...
  • Well I've decided to release the demo, along with a spiffy little website to direct people to about this game!

    It's an early demo, some features aren't finished or fully implemented yet (mostly surrounding the dialogue system, which is also a large chunk of the gameplay), but heck, I wanna share with you guys what I've been up to, so check it out :)

  • Hey Tim, I'm happy you released a demo! 

    As I told you, I like your graphic style and also animations are cartoonish. Cool!

    Great idea the double interaction icons! 
    How do you make the different coloured text in some dialogues? O_o?

    But in the final version, chars can walk around free or they "walk" only when you click on hotspots?

    But the man who we make speak in the very beginning, the one who's driving... is he the assassin? He go out of his car and suddently the "monster" appear... scary... !!! 

    Keep us informed on future upgrades and great work man! 
  • Just played the demo, very nice! So you did everything yourself incl. sounds? How many hours of gameplay are you planning?

    Maybe you could go for a Kickstarter-Campaign, adventures are quite popular at the moment, you already have the demo and clearly the skills to make a nice campaign-page:-)
  • Thanks guys!

    @2finger I use Pixelcrushers' Dialogue System for Unity for the big conversations (and AC for the environmental stuff). And that plugin has a rich text mode where you can color certain words, very cool!

    I'm not planning on making walkcycles and stuff, I'm keeping it the way Puzzle Agent does it with the static poses (ofcourse with idle animations) and transition cutscenes from marker to marker. Saves me some navmesh/animations issues ;)

    @ramses I did most of it except the music, one track was made by a friend and the rest is stuff I got from the internet for now.

    I think the final game will be about 4 to 5 times the content, and yeah I might put up a kickstarter for it, gotta get that funding somehow! :)
  • edited July 2014
    Hey, I still have to download your demo, so I can't talk  but what I've seen posted here... Very interesting story and great great looking artwork!!

    It's a pity you dont plan to have more conventional animations... But just in case, as the characters style are without "lines", maybe it's easier to cut them in limbs use some kind of bone animation... like Smoothmoves, puppet2d (both plugins inside Unity)... anyway, I understand the amount of work, and being only you, so it's a clever decision ;P (I really hate drawing walkcycles... and for adventure games there are whole 4/8 directions! :O )

    So good work, I'll come back as soon as I play your demo :)
  • Nice work Hedgefield, I really like your setting and the art style. My favorite part was the intro, loved the rearview mirror idea!

    And yeah, walk cycles is A LOT of work, so I can understand your decision to skip them. If you decide to do a Kickstarter you've earned a backer right here! 
  • Hey Hedgefield, I understand your decision of skipping walkcycles, but if I can give you an advice, make the chars more expressive. I know you have the capabilities to make it, you're an artist! ^_^
    I mean, the game is dialogues based, right? But no one is changing his face or move their mouth. I think if you add some speaking animations and facial expression (angry, surprised, sad...), the walkcycles are useless and no one will miss them! :)
    Just my opinion... (and maybe in the final version you already scheduled to make it).

    I found a small bug when you look the radio logo, Sofia for a fraction change her angle to 45°... LOL!

    I tried the game a second time on my office pc with the lower resolution 1280 (how can you set up the restricted resolutions of the game??? There are some options in Unity?) and the time dialogue bar isn't visible... tried with 1360 and came back to visibility!

    Have a good work! 
  • Cheers! I'm for sure going to do some basic animations like caleb filming with the camera during interviews and different facial expressions and emotes and such. Right now the radio lady is static, but I already animated her sitting at the desk and getting up when you knock, for instance. And the gas station guy is going to be smoking a cigarette and stuff, definitely. It was just a 'nice to have' for the deadline for which I made the demo ;)

    And yeah something weird is going on with the Face Marker action where the characters flicker sometimes! Noticed that too. Not sure if that's anything I can fix but oh well ha.
  • Great stuff, @hedgefield!  One thing I might be able to help with re: flickering.  Since you don't seem to have up/down frames for your characters, they seem to momentarily disappear when turning around.  If I've guessed right, you should be able to get around that by supplying one-frame left/right idle poses as up/down animations (an old trick I'd use in the days of AGS)
  • Thanks Chris! Ha yep I used that trick too, and I did so here too, duping the left/right anims as up/down (otherwise I got errors with multiple directions checked), but I think I noticed a few updates ago that there was an occasional flicker when turning. Might be that I have something like turn before walking or such checked which has an effect on it, but haven't been able to pin it down just yet.
  • Oh by the way @2finger, if you open the build settings in Unity and then go to the player settings, under Resolution you can uncheck all the aspect ratios you don't want!
  • Tx Tim! :-bd
  • The game looks fantastic as it is. I was wondering though, are you using SVG for sprites? They look really smooth

    As for walk animation, i hear you. Especially the more you work on it, the more you realize the difference between how they were making in old games and how what you do is just bothers you now.

    But i agree with above comments. For such a visually pleasing game, you might need to go extra few steps to give the "feeling" a bit more.

    By the way, even the first screen just blows you away. Really wonderfully done.
  • edited July 2014
    Thanks! I've done the assets so far in Photoshop, I'm just more comfortable with that than vectors ;) but I wish I was better at illustrator, some assets are already pushing the limits of their resolution a bit with all the zooming..
  • edited August 2014
    oops double post
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