Touhou Mecha Chapter 3 progress

March 2nd, 2014 by Graph

Hi folks, Graph here with an update on Touhou Mecha Chapter 3.
Okuu's Discovery

The character sprites for this Chapter are done now! Admittedly I’ve been pretty lazy since the start of the year, and this should’ve been done weeks ago. I’m planning to kick things into high gear for the next phase, Chapter 3′s battle scene.

I’ll have new mecha art trickle into the Twitter account over the next few weeks. Look forward to it!
Old Rivals
Kisume

ESR : The state of the game

December 17th, 2013 by IcedFairy

This update is somewhat late, so the first thing I want to state is we haven’t given up on the project. It’s still moving along, and while we’ve had our problems with jobs and other real life events slowing things down, we’re still doing our best to finish things. So you don’t need to panic about us quitting.

When we started making ESR we had six writers and four artists. Most of us were in college. Now we have one artist and two writers, and all of us are doing various work. The change has slowed us a great deal. Now that we’re all settling into our lives we’re getting a lot more actual writing done. I personally am trying to get 15000 words a month into ESR and LT is keeping apace despite his schedule. Still we can’t keep up the same level of writing we used to, much less meet what we’d originally planned.

To be fair, our original plans were terribly unrealistic. We wanted six plots with ten endings, AND four subplots on top of that, in a open enviroment where players could interact with characters in any order. That didn’t work even with our original team, so we cut down the script and made it less open ended.

Now that we’re here near the end with so much more to go before our script pieces become a game, it’s obvious that our cuts just weren’t enough. So while it’s painful, we’re going to take a knife to a lot of our original ideas, including some of the ones that appeared in the demos.

So what’s on the cutting room floor? Probably the entire Youmu subplot. It just didn’t fit well, and honestly many other doujin writers have done it better. We also had a ridiculously complex finale for the Gensoukyo 5 planned out… and I’m sure Graph will be happy that we’re making it less insane. The Harem route is dead. Sorry. And I expect a lot of unneeded detail work is going to get sliced away.

On the other hand our drive to keep moving is also giving us some new ideas we’re looking forward to writing down. Getting events to chain nicely into each other is something of an art, and we’re putting what we learned on the project earlier to good use in that field.

Hopefully out of this massacre and rebirth of ideas we can get a set of good solid endings that we can use to transform our game from a lot of scripts into a game that you’ll all enjoy. When will that be? Given how far 15000 words goes in our endings, I’m not sure I can give a good estimate still. Especially since we’re still considering what should be cut for brevity and what we need to keep the game amusing and consistent. I know that’s not really inspiring, but it’s the best I can give.

Graph’s still going to be putting out Touhou Mecha, which you all should read, and we’re going to keep working away at this project. I admit to being tempted to quit, but the good friends I have on the dev team keep bringing me back. I’m sure all our staff feel the same way. We’re gonna keep scripting words, and hopefully someday soon we’ll have more upbeat news to give.

DSD back on Twitter!

November 26th, 2013 by Graph

Reimu, TM ver.

“DSD was on Twitter”, you ask? Yes, though we barely used it. It’s listed under daisukimadan.

I’m looking to change that by posting smaller, more frequent updates on Touhou Mecha using that account. Major progress updates will still be posted on the blog, and linked to from the Twitter account.

I don’t know if ESR will be updating frequently enough to use the Twitter format, but rest assured you’ll be hearing a progress report on that over the holidays.

Anyway, it’s been a slow first month for Chapter 3, but I’ve been plugging away at the sprites for the latest cast additions. With that, it’s time for me to get back to work!

Chapter 2 CGs on DA

October 19th, 2013 by Graph

Select CGs from Chapter 2 of Touhou Mecha have been posted to my DA gallery here. Included are a few in larger size, and others that are only seen in-game briefly!

With that business out of the way, we can start working on Chapter 3. And with any luck we can get a more detailed status update on ESR up soon!

Aftermath

October 9th, 2013 by Graph

Unyuu...

Hello, this is Graph, taking it easy after one of the crazier beta test sessions of Touhou Mecha so far!

Having let one too many self-imposed deadlines pass by, I decided to draw the Chapter Select image featured in our previous post during beta testing. Around this time my tablet died, due to taking too much damage to the cord over time. It was a Wacom Intuos3 that’s served me for about 7 years… R.I.P.

I used my brother’s tablet to do the last stretch, which took quite a bit of getting used to since it was 1/4th the size and had a different, rougher surface. I ended up spending over 30 hours on that one image! Though part of it was other factors, like doing 3 full-body shots, and not being that used to having light sources from the side.

Switching gears, originally we intended to release Chapter 2 without any new music. That would be because OverCoat became pretty busy with RL stuff for a while, so I didn’t bug him about the soundtrack much this round. Well, guess who shows up at the absolute last minute, after the beta testers have given their feedback and I’m hours away from finishing the last image?!

The new song is pretty neat though! There’s also an alternate version of one of the Chapter 1 songs that plays as a theme for Parsia, but that was actually composed pretty early on and I somehow forgot to add it.

Touhou Mecha OST

Speaking of music, OverCoat has released his work on the Touhou Mecha OST on Bandicamp as a free download! You can check that out over here.

Moving forward, before starting on Chapter 3 proper I’d better map out the plot for the rest of Hell’s Rising. I had a rough idea of where it’s going from the start, but by now several mysterious elements have appeared in the story. And I should make sure that all the questions that need to be answered, get answered.

And with that, see you all next update!

Touhou Mecha 2.0 is out!

October 7th, 2013 by Graph

Chapter 2 Title

Hello all, it’s Graph! We at DSD are proud to present Chapter 2 of Touhou Mecha, which adds Chapter 2 and the related Extras! Among other bells and whistles, we tried out a different, more fast-paced type of battle scene this time around. Enjoy!

Windows download (87.1 MB): here
Multiplatform download (99.3 MB): here

Touhou Mecha uses DirectX. If the VN doesn’t display visuals correctly for you, check the graphics acceleration note on the downloads page!

Chapter 2 testing in progress.

September 29th, 2013 by Graph

The beta test session for Chapter 2 of Touhou Mecha has started. Our thanks go out to everyone who applied! If things go smoothly, I think we’ll be releasing this one around the end of the week.

Chapter 2 beta testing

September 19th, 2013 by Graph

Marisa piloting

Hello all, Graph here! I’d like to get the ball rolling for Chapter 2 of Touhou Mecha now. There’s actually 2 things I wanted to get done this time around.

One is the beta test, as you’ve guessed. If you’re interested in beta testing Chapter 2, send an e-mail to beta@dsd.faceroll.net. Aside from your intention to beta test, it would be good to mention when you can get started. I’ve estimated Chapter 2 to be about a 1 hour read, about like Chapter 1. The new TM Database articles take… maybe 30 minutes. It really depends on your reading speed!

The other thing was mentioned in Chapter 1′s installment of Hellcat Corner: A Q&A section for Chapter 2′s Hellcat Corner! You send us questions, and the answers for a select few appear in the upcoming Hellcat Corner skit! We’ll give preference to questions related to the world of Touhou Mecha or the creation of the VN, but we may include a question on a random topic as well. You can address questions to DSD, or to the girls of Touhou Mecha. Try to keep it PG-13 please!

You can send those questions to staff@dsd.faceroll.net. If you’re submitting a beta test application, you can also include your question with the application. Be sure to mention if you’re fine with seeing your question featured on Hellcat Corner! If your question doesn’t get selected, you can submit it to this topic afterwards, where you’ll be pretty much guaranteed an answer.

Please submit your applications and questions by the end of Wednesday, September 25. The betas will be distributed later that week, after we’ve looked through the applications and finished that Hellcat Corner skit. I’m going to be drawing until pretty much the last minute, so I’ll see you guys then!

EDIT: By the way, if you gave feedback in the beta testing period in any of DSD’s previous releases, you get a free pass! Just send us an e-mail mentioning your forum account name and which project you participated in, and your spot is guaranteed. It’s good to have new perspectives though, so we’re still taking newcomers!

EDIT2: The names of the readers who submit questions to the Q&A section may be shown in Hellcat Corner, if the reader chooses. If submitting questions for the Q&A section, let us know what name you’d like to use, or if you’d prefer to stay anonymous.

Summer heat.

August 31st, 2013 by Graph

Hello folks, due to various circumstances I fell a bit behind schedule on Touhou Mecha;

-Did more animation and art than originally planned
-Summer heat
-Nice games

My workload estimation needs work, but I did manage to finish up the mecha sprites for Chapter 2. What’s left is:

-18 images for CG (Half of those should go by pretty fast)
-4 backgrounds
-New Extras for Chapter 2, in TM Database and Hellcat Corner

I’ll let you guys know when we’re ready to start beta testing which should be in 2-3 weeks. Until then… stay cool, folks! Ask your local ice fairy for assistance if needed. (But not _our_ Iced Fairy! He needs to keep writing.)

Fairies attack!

Getting warmer

July 22nd, 2013 by Graph

Hello folks, Graph here! It’s been a while since our last update, but our projects are still coming along.

Back in April and May, I took those two months out to work on another project. Not Touhou-related, but there’s mecha; I guess that’s why my skills were called on! It’s a space-age strategy RPG made using Ren’py, the same engine that DSD’s VNs run on. It’s being written and programmed by a couple of other guys from Lemma Soft. It’s still in the design stages, but I’ll link more information when the project has some Internet presence.

Anyway, Touhou Mecha! Chapter 2 has made good progress; the animation, sounds and character sprites are in place, and most of what’s left is finishing up the new mecha sprites, BGs and CGs that are currently in TM as sketches.

We upgraded to Ren’py 6.15, which has additive blending! It should make it easier to do those nice glowy effects that mecha battles are so fond of.

A little warmer

And here’s a sneak preview of Marisa’s AM, the Chroma! The three magician friends have their own variation of the Chroma with different weapons.

Chroma shoots

I’m aiming for a release of Touhou Mecha Chapter 2 sometime August. Look forward to it!

In other news, it’s business as usual for ESR, and we’re still plugging away at that mountain of writing. Currently the writers are trying to finish up one ending to get an idea what they want the ending lengths to be.