July Update & Important News

Hi folks,

Apologies for the late update. We’ve got good news and we’ve got bad news.

Design Changes

We’ve decided to move away from having an ever-present minimap, and instead separate this into a navigation mode and a scene mode. The scene mode will be very similar to mock-ups you’ve seen before. These will happen when an event triggers, when you meet an NPC, when you get into a battle, and so on. However, the navigation mode will for traversing the world itself with a slightly modified GUI to keep it cleaner and more user-friendly.

Carnal Souls v0.0.1

NavModeMockup

Navigation mode mock-up.

 

We’ve yet to put in the surrounding GUI, but you can play with the navigation mode right now (give it a few seconds to load). The game can read, import, and construct .tmx maps made outside of Unity (in this case using Tiled), thanks to Crimson writing a full import script. This includes properties for tiles like being impassable or costing more stamina to traverse, and will mean eventually we can support player-made maps and dungeons later down the line. This was pretty difficult to do and is the first step in Carnal Souls supporting user-made content and mods later down the line.

All the tile sprites, almost 100 of them for coasts, were made by me. The sprites aren’t final yet and the map is just a quick demonstration map (the hills are especially quick and dirty). It also has working pathfinding, which should be shown any time you click a distant tile. Simply click it again to move to the destination. It should try to avoid hills and impassable terrain automatically where it makes sense to based on stamina costs. Right now it only supports moving and plotting waypoints, but our next update will put stuff in the world to interact with.

For now, this has replaced the link to the character creation demo, we’ll get a new link up for that soon. This release isn’t tied to the character creator yet, but will be once the game is ready for it. I know it doesn’t seem like much at the moment, but we’ve got a lot there in the background to build on now.

Next Update

Camera panning/zooming will be coming soon, possibly the next update. Eventually we’ll have roads to make travel easier, rivers and bridges, forests, and other terrain types and biomes, but next we’re going to work on a basic battle system and some simple enemies to fight. The parser’s not ready to handle full sex scenes yet, so I aim to get some smutty enemy art in there to help tide you guys over until it is.

Later we also plan to tighten up the feel and movement, make the waypoint route stick around and have the marker follow it until the destination is reached, things like that. Lots of things that fall under the ‘polish’ category that can come later.

As always, any feedback is welcome, bug reports even moreso should you find any. Those go in the bug reports subforum.

The Bad News

The exchange rate for USD – GBP has tanked, I’m sure most of you have heard. In fact, it’s pretty much been bad since the Indiegogo campaign ended at the start of the year. This means that the Indiegogo funds have been going less and less far, taking more pounds to pay every dollar expense. For those unaware, I live in the UK, Crimson in the US. The recent plummet post-Brexit alone has cost us the equivalent of over 2,000USD from our remaining funds, and the dipping rate has been costing us since the beginning. According to most sources, sterling recently hit the lowest it’s been in 31 years, and we were under-funded to begin with. All things considered, we’ve done very well to last this long.

We’re not the only ones affected by the UK’s vote by any measure (I think it was over 2 trillion in shares gone), but this has been hitting us hard. The bottom line is we’ve lost about 2-3 months of development time. One needs a gross annual income of 50,000GBP or more to get an international bank account here, so even had I been able to see into the future, there was no avoiding it. Sending the whole sum to Crimson, while I trust him to do so, would’ve resulted in a massive tax expense, and holding the game’s whole budget in Paypal would make it subject to Paypal freezing the funds for literally any reason.

From when the Indiegogo campaign started to today.

From when the Indiegogo campaign started to today.

 

What now?

I have a small amount of money from that Big Book of BNG I made last year coming soon, which will help. I’ve been talking to my accountant about the best ways to keep that and our incoming Patreon money in USD to protect it from further decline, so future pledges are being protected as much as possible.

The changeover from the end of the Indiegogo money to being supported by the Patreon income was always going to be our rockiest area, but it’s now been made all the rockier. What was a stepping stone is now a chasm we have to make it over. We’re going to push the game’s development as far as we can get it in the time we have, but I hope you all understand what this means. Crimson will have to find a new job soon or he risks being unable to stay where he is. I’ll need to do the same or go back to commissions full-time. We’ve always said we’ll work on Carnal Souls in our free time if we have to, and we will, but it means a long and uncertain delay on things.

Unless we can get the Patreon up enough to support us, and within the next two months.

I’ve changed the Patreon‘s goal from 3000 to 5500. That’s just about enough to keep us going with the new rates, if we need more I’ll work in extra commissions, but that is everything I need to keep Crimson paid and keep myself fed. We’re going to do everything we can for Carnal Souls. We’re tired, we’re terrified, sleep is a memory and food is optional, but we’re going to get CS as far as we can. We know we need your help, and we’re going to keep working to earn it.

I welcome any ideas to boost our income, but the most direct way to help right now is the Patreon. It pays out to Payoneer in USD each month, and I think we can work it so Crimson can get paid directly from there while still keeping adequate tax records, protecting future pledges from GBP where possible. I’m considering running an emergency Indiegogo as a last resort, but only as a last resort.

As always, what you guys think is important. Please let us know what you think and if you have ideas. Signal boosts, anything like that goes a long way if you can’t pledge. I don’t blame anyone for getting angry or outraged, trust me when I say it’s been a kind of slow, waking nightmare, but anger won’t help Carnal Souls pull through. I know how it looks when a project asks for help before completion, but you don’t have to take my word for it. This isn’t an unsubstantiated ‘I got robbed’ or ‘my grandma is super ill’. The UK economy is now in the toilet, and it has had a very real impact on us because that’s where I live.

I don’t think I can be held responsible for my country’s decision to uproot itself from the surrounding world, but I am responsible for Carnal Souls, and both I and Crimson are going to do everything we can to push it through. If we can get the Patreon up enough to see us through and secure Carnal Souls’ immediate future, we’ll do something to thank everyone. I don’t know how yet, I’ll happily take suggestions should we get there, but I won’t forget any help we receive now because without it, we’re in trouble.

We’ll have the next update for you as soon as we can.

14 Responses to “July Update & Important News”

  1. Tanini says:

    Okay… forgive my brazen suggestion, but as a person who backed the gogo, and is considering backing the patreon, I feel like it would make sense to offer rewards. I’m not saying offer taxing rewards that require commissions or extra content. I’m instead suggesting that maybe you offer more frequent updates or tidbits about characters and/or plans. I’m personally invested in the development process. It’s why I avidly follow TiTS. The frequent updates keep me invested and checking up on the game. I’m not saying you should allow alpha or beta testing either. But for patrons who are investing even more money into the continued development of the game after backing I think a little bit more involvement might help… Um… yeah… sorry if this didn’t help any, but I figured I’d at least say something. I hope we reach your goal.

    • Zulcoringa says:

      Agreed… Fenco Is so close with their community that people get around even if they don’t play tits, just for interaction, the every day posts (often about nothing important, just “I’m sick, lols” ) captures people trust because like the sun we know we will get a word from fen tomorrow… In this genre people are always afraid that the devolpers will someday disappear without a word, because to be honest we all use only avatars, and vanishing is easy to do.

      -Make some streams; people will chill around just to see you writting codes and listening to good music. (and gives that intimate feeling)
      -Give backers insight on what you’re working on that day, you can be painfully specific.
      -Give hints about the lore to gather volunteers and fanfic creators active on the forums, they will speculate about the universe and make up things to give people something to read while you’re working.

      just my opinion tho.

  2. Cynabal says:

    Sorry that more than 50% of your fellow citizens are idiots, its not much but you earned yourself a patreon pledge. amazing work so far look forward to seeing more.

  3. R3agan Smash says:

    I am a backer of the original indie-gogo campaign, and having seen a ton of content creators hurt by brexit, I am glad I can do something here. I am pledging 10 dollars / month through patreon, because I want to see this game be a success. I know it isn’t much and if I could afford more I would gladly give it. Hopefully other backers can help fill in the gap and we can get the game we originally wanted, in the quality it deserves. Thankyou

  4. Osteoporozis says:

    First the EU, next the UN, and after that… the planet! That’s right, the great nation of Britian is cashing out and turning the entire landmass into a floating rock which the new PM plans to float directly into jupiter.

    On a more serious note, this is about as unfortunate as unfortunate gets. $20 US incoming.

  5. Acanthan says:

    I would love to back but I’m sure you are painfully aware of a large glaring issue that this project has. We haven’t seen anything substantial. I know the parser isn’t ready and there are a lot of very valid reasons as to why we don’t get to see much. However anyone can say “I have this amazing thing I’m making I’m just not ready to show much yet” but is it as good as you think it is?

    I think you know better than anyone that you need to get somthing substantial out the door for people to see. My one suggestion is when you get the navigation test in quickly throw in a couple of scripted scenes nothing fancy no deviation based on body style gender ect. Could be even two people you see through the bushes. In short get a sample of your writing AND art out ASAP if it’s good enough then people will throw their money at you.

    Trials in tainted space has had a big patreon from day one for one reason. They knew what they were paying for. They already saw what fenoxo and friends were capable of. This project has the same if not more potential. show the people what you can do and all the patreon pledges will be yours.

    For those that skipped to the end please pledge now doesn’t need to be much 2$ helps but when they show real promise let’s blow that patreon out of the water I want to see a fresh text based smut game happen and I hope these new gods of the gutter can do it.

    Sry for text wall.

    • Fenoxo says:

      Agreed 100%. Why are you drawing hundreds of map tiles? If cash is running low, you should probably shelve the map systems for now and slam some of the game’s intro. Maybe a tutorial fight or introductory branching sex-scene? People will understand if the parser for it isn’t perfect.

      Heck, instead of drawing those map tiles, you could’ve left placeholder blocks in for them and drawn one of the game’s NPCs, splattered them up here on the blog with a “Carnal Souls needs you!” message and a notice that Patreon supporters could see the naked version of said character.

      TiTS still has a placeholder space travel system. We’ve got some cool ideas, but if we hadn’t prioritized things that would make us money, we mightof ran dry long ago.

      • Benji says:

        I actually made a custom filter in Filter Forge to build those tiles for me. Took a few days, then all I had to do was save them out and sew them together in a sprite sheet. Also has the capability for different water types and coastline variations for later when we want to do swamps or lava or something. Would’ve taken weeks doing them by hand otherwise. I did that while we were having internet issues last month, seeing as we couldn’t work on the code together.

        You’re right though. We’re prioritising encounters and a simple battle system right now, and I have an idea for an encounter that’d demonstrate sex scenes without relying too heavily on the parser. More frequent updates, even small ones, seem to be a common request, so we’re going to work something out soon for that. Promo art is likely a good idea, too.

  6. Belrose says:

    Yo, as a fellow Englishman I feel you on so many levels, honestly if we understand. Consider doing some streaming, sort of bridge the gap between updates and just show us that you’re consistently working on something. It’ll let a lot of people know that you’re still here and you’re still trying, I’d definitely tune in and who knows we could even throw ideas your way whilst you stream.

  7. Conrade bork says:

    Okay so I backed the indigogo and i get why you need some more cash now and I ain’t opposed to sending a little more yer way. But I am absolutely opposed to re-occurring payments. Is there a different way to send you cash than the patreon.

    • Benji says:

      Not at the moment, but if it happens that we need to run an emergency Indiegogo or something, we’ll let everyone know loud and clear. Either way, I appreciate the willingness to support us 🙂

  8. Redner says:

    About the demo: When I open it, I can only see the map and move around (character creation, UI doesn’t show up at all)
    Btw, I’m using Chrome (Windows 7)

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