This week has been a very busy time for us Pixel Ferrets! It was time for the annual Gotland Game Conference, where we got to go to our old campus and judge the games the students made this year.

This year things were a little different: there were new award categories and a whole new voting system, which means as opposed to previous years we were expected to play all of the games this time! We’ve always tried to play as many games as possible, but this year it was for real. GGC started off, as usual, with us getting split into groups in order to listen to the student presentations (which we were judging as well), then we had the rest of the day until way into the evening and the day after to play their games.

The second day (Tuesday) continued with another full day of game testing (there are 34 games in total, so as you can imagine playing all of them takes a lot of time)! In the evening we met up with the other judges and voted on what games we thought were fit to win each award. Then we had one final day (Wednesday) to play any remaining games, especially the ones nominated by the other jurors, before we met up for a 3 hours long discussion about which games should win. At about 19:00 there was be a fancy award ceremony with an after party. Whew!

Here are some photos, courtesy of Gotland Game Conference’s Facebook page:

We tried our best to mash in some dev time among this craziness as well, so first up we have the possibly most important (for the inhabitants of Grindea anyway) room interior of them all: the Ice Cream Parlor!!! What stroll along the beach in this hot seaside town is complete without a cooling ice cream?

Best part about this is I got to be creative with the ice cream flavors, which was a blast. I’d totally try most of these, no questions asked. Which ones would you like to try?

Next up, we have a shield maker! This dude sells shields in the market area of the desert town, sharing a stand with the potion seller and sword smith!

Finished sprite:

The next portrait is of an old, forgotten master farmer (in the literal sense), whom you’ll have the (mis)fortune of meeting along your travels! Forgotten by his family, this man holds a grudge that will come back to haunt the inhabitants of the desert! Oh my…

Finished portrait:

Meanwhile in Fred’s department, we have the animation for the photographer girl who hands you the photography quest (if you’ve played the latest Arcadia rework update you might have seen her already), as well as possibly the most important thing in any typical harbor town. What I’m talking about? Seagulls, for course!!

This week we’ve taken a slight break from the desert to add some final touches to Arcade Mode in preparation for launching the Arcadia Rework on stable (which has now been done)! Aside from the sound effects, we wanted to add a couple of new quests and mechanics, one which is brand new and will probably also make an appearance in some form in Story Mode: Photography!

Above you can see the first WIP of the photography mode, basically it’s a camera you equip which allows you to take a photograph of whatever is happening right now. You’ll be given quests by a photographer who wants you to take photos of certain things, and once you give her a picture of what she asked for, she will give you a reward.

Upgrades graphics seen below, along with an indicator for whether it’s the right motif of not (not only will Trunk tell you it’s wrong, there will be an ‘x’ showing it as well):

The rewards in question will be a painting version of whatever you were asked to take a photo of. Of course, that means I had to make a few paintings featuring that:

I accidentally forgot to record making the background for the Giga Slime hammer painting, so it kind of looks like it magically manifests at once, haha! Oops… Anyway, here are the three painting that will be available so far, more to come:

Next up, a return to the Temple of Seasons! No, don’t worry, we haven’t gone crazy! This isn’t exactly a Temple of Seasons room as much as it is an extra Arcade Mode room :)

This, too, will feature in a newly added quest, and is based off of a room from story mode, though for the sake of Arcade Mode we’re mixing it up a little, making it a mixed seasons room rather than a simple autumn room:

Do you have any ideas of whom you might meet here? Finished thing:

Some new, quick sprites have been made as well, this time a bunch of rewards for the various quests (fae wings for your head! wohoo!), as well as the camera used for the photography quests and a sack of bird feed for another quest featuring another well-known face from Story Mode, who wishes to see some birds in Arcadia!

I’ve been particularly bad at hitting that ‘record’ button so once more I forgot to record a whole section, namely the bird feed bag… Oh well :D

Now, back to those portraits! This guy is a card player found in the Saloon near the desert town. After this there are 10 portraits left, though Fred keeps adding new NPCs so we’ll see where it all ends! :D Did you know that so far, not counting the portraits I haven’t made yet, there’s 40 NPCs unique to the desert area!? In other words there will likely be over 50 before we’re done! Oh my…

Finished version:

We’ll end this week with one more portrait, this time the quirky sword smith from the market area in the desert town:

Nothing much to say about this one! Just another silly face :) More next week~

This week we’ve finally started going through (and implementing) the sound effects! As usual when we start this part of development, we’ve sent out a request for a bazillion sounds to our trusted sound effect person, Fark who then promptly provides us with what we asked for, sometimes with several options!

To decide on these options, we go through each sound effect one by one and select our favorites. We tend to do this separately when we have the time, so to note others of our preference we have a grand google doc which looks something like this:

Whenever someone has listened to a sound effect, they put down their preference beneath the name of the sound effect, noting who they are by using the first letter of their name. If two people are in agreement that’s the sound that gets chosen, and if nobody agrees on any one option, there’s usually a discussion some time after everyone has noted their preferences.

Sound effects really make such a huge difference to the game, and we’re super happy to be able to work with Fark in this way and get the bestest sounds for Grindea! Can’t wait for you to hear those cute Loods – which, by the way, you might be able to later today when we have a frontline update scheduled! :)

Moving on with the desert stuff, there are still a bunch of interiors to finish. By now I’ve made so many random items across the game that a lot of them can be reused in various ways, and for this room in particular I used a bunch of old stuff either as is or after making some slight changes to them.

This house, you see, is a warehouse that stores a ton of random objects, so what better place to reuse a bunch of those random things, such as jars, chests, boxes and whatnot? Of course, we wanted to keep the feel of the desert interiors so where’s a bunch of carpets and such as well.

Below you can see it in its current form, though I couldn’t help myself and added a few more items after finishing up the video (as well as fixing the missing pixels on one of the carpets, oops) :)

Next up we have another portrait! This guy is strolling along the market, looking at the wares. How interesting!

The next portrait is of one character you might have come across before, though not personally. You see, this is Professor Mandrake, who has been corresponding with Ivy recently. Such a swell guy, helping her with her research!

As you might guess, he will also be found in the desert. What he’s doing there? Why, wouldn’t you like to know!? You’ll just have to play and see ;)

Fred continues to make desert NPCs as well! Since I made the portrait for Mandrake, he began making his sprite:

When we designed this guy we though it’d be fun to make him a really buff guy. There’s this stereotype that professors are bookish and quiet, so this time we wanted to mix things up a little and make him a very charismatic, body building type of guy. Cause why not? :D

In the desert town, there’s another new NPC throwing coins into a fountain for luck:

…Meanwhile out in the water, something very strange is taking place:

Perhaps you recognize these silly guys from somewhere else. What are they doing in a boat? Where are they going? What will they do there? All to be answered in the upcoming main quest :D

The next desert interior we’ll take a look at is the house boat in the harbor area! In this version the door is centered while the exterior has it more to the left, so I’ll move that around later to suit the outside version.

Other than that the interior is slightly different compared to the regular houses, with different kinds of windows and another type of bed. There’s also some slight color variations and edits of some of the props!

WIP & finished version below:

Next up we have a random house that will be right next to the market! We don’t really have any fixed plans for this house yet, so I’m just whipping together a quick basic house that can be inhabited by pretty much any of the NPCs already made:

Maybe in the future we’ll have a more specific idea of who lives here and what kind of person they are, in order to make the place more personal. Until then, it’s just another example of the desert style housing~

This week’s first portrait features a girl walking around in the desert town! I call her a beach girl even though she will probably be walking around in the market, as she is dressed like someone strolling along the beach! She’s probably visiting the town as a tourist, having a relaxing vacation.

WIP video:

Finished sprite:

The second portrait features a guy lying on the beach getting an intense sunburn. Do not do this at home kids, this is not very healthy for your skin! The character is based on this sprite made by Fred:

WIP video (also featuring the creation of the final sprite this time, woohoo):

…and the finished thing:

Meanwhile in the animation department, the boss work continues! Fred has worked hard with the new epic Solem boss, who gets an epic laser attack through a mystical gem, oh my!!

Previously we said all Solems will have the laser attack, but we then changed our minds and decided that it would simply make them a bit too crazy for regular enemies. Saving the attack for a boss is totally OK though!

No ancient ruin is complete without its own sets of traps, of course, and since we all grew up watching the #1 adventurer of all time running away in panic from a rock, it’s time for you to do just that in Grindea!

In order to have a cool rock to run away from Fred started making a bunch of ’em, to see which one we liked the most:

And here we have it, in all its glory, chasing our unsuspecting heroes as they steal an ancient treasure totally mind their own business, how unfair!

After having gone many weeks now without having any meetings (we’ve all been busy doing our parts for the Arcadia rework and desert) it was finally time for us to have another discussion about future events in the game!

Very soon we hope that Teddy will have rid Arcade Mode of the more severe bugs, and as such be ready to move on to the desert. Story wise, there are a couple of important things happening here before the player is ready to move on to the fourth ‘dungeon’. One such thing is a boss fight inside a small temple we have yet to make – which is what we discussed today.

So, in this temple we plan on having one special puzzle where you have to use a translation of an ancient language to move blocks (or something similar) to specific places in order to unlock a secret doorway. This doorway leads to an open room with a long staircase (exactly how long, we’ll have to test). At the top of the staircase is a treasure which the player needs. As you take the treasure something horrible will happen that causes you to run down the stairs, only to have your way blocked and a boss fight to ensue – more on what boss will appear later in the post… :)

Above you have a very finished (not) sketch of the area inside the secret door.

Next, you need to get to the final ‘dungeon’. As we have mentioned before, this will be a ghost ship, and as such, you will need to get there by boat (a very small one, to be precise). We’ve had some ideas on how to go about getting the player there – we of course knew it had to be by boat, but how to actually get inside the ship, and what the scenery would look like from outside. Today we talked and made some sketches that deal with that as well!

Basically you’ll approach the ghost ship from the side, and the camera will scroll up once you get to an entry point, to show the ship as a whole along with the zone title. We hope this will serve as a semi-dramatic introduction to the area!

Then, the camera will scroll back down to your little boat which now has a pair of boards connecting it to the bigger ship so you can enter it:

11/10 sketches I know, haha.. Well, as soon as I’ve completed my part of the desert graphics I’ll start working on this ship and its interiors for real. Already looking forward to it! :)

Before I can do any work on the ghost ship, I need to finish up this church, among other things! Using the clock tower as a base, I create this random holy space in the middle of the port town. Who might you find here? You might be able to guess!

Finished interior, for now:

The first portrait this week (yeah, I’ll probably start posting at least two per week to keep up with Fred’s output and be able to post them all before we’re done with the town, haha) belongs a character made by Fred quite a while ago, a guy who fell asleep on the beach while reading. Here’s a reminder of what he looks like:

I don’t know whether he will wake up later or not, for now though I opted to make his portrait asleep as well. Most likely his dialogue will simply be ‘zzz’ or some sleep talking for now. If he were to wake up he would need a new animation, so I’ll save making an expression for him when he’s awake until then :)

Finished sprite for now:

So the NEXT one this week ( did you know there are 14 more after this to be precise? Oh my)! I’m not sure exactly what this guy’s backstory will be but I believe Fred intended for him to be one of Master Ji’s graduated students (it is based off a NPC sprite he made). The WIP:

Finished portrait:

So obviously Fred keeps busy doing desert things as well! Not only does he continue making NPCs, he has also started working on one of the bosses you will face in this area. Below you can see the work in progress and final version of the boss you’ll fight inside the temple mentioned earlier:

Basically it’s a more advanced version of the Solems which will appear in the desert as regular enemies, powered by a mysterious crystal, oh my!

Fred has also been working on this NPC whose portrait was posted before, who I think might be Master Ji’s graduated pupil:

And here’s some of the work in progress versions of this guy before the final version was decided upon:

Another week means more interior stuff for the desert! In this next and final part of that first desert house, it’s time to add some details. Tassels, carpet fringes, carrots and half-dead plants are some of the things that are on the menu for this video. Check it out here:

 

Now it’s time for the next interior, the one belonging to an author living in the desert town! As with the previous interior, in this first video I’ll add and create all the basics, with details to be added in a later part:

 

The next part is adding the smaller details. It’s a slightly shorter video since the base for several of these items already exists! The idea here was to fill the house with books and papers – previous drafts, notes and other things she might have jotted down in her work. Stuff like that! Also made room for a pet of some kind in the video above (the bed and water bowl), I am hoping for a cat but it’s not yet decided :)

 

And here’s the finished house:

Next up, a portrait – there’s still a bunch left before all of the desert NPCs have their portraits, whew! This one belongs to the character sitting in the harbor, made by Fred last week :)

And the finished sprite:

…and as we draw ever closer to completing the desert, there are more NPCs and more portraits needed! Hence another one this week. This one is the author who will live in the house I just made, while she’s working on her latest novel. Perhaps you can help her with some ideas?

 

Hey guys! It’s a new week and new adventures. First, though, let’s take a look at some of those last minute fixes for Arcadia.

Some of you might have noticed some very wonky backgrounds for some of the Mt Bloom challenges! This is due to a miscommunication between me and Teddy: he had made a couple of backgrounds by copying and pasting random pieces of old backgrounds into something that fit with the phase challenges he designed. However, he forgot to tell me about these and so when the patch initially launched, it launched with the WIP bakgrounds – oops!

While this has been fixed, though it hasn’t been updated in the game yet. For now, enjoy the rather wonky WIP versions, haha!

Another thing that will be added soon-ish are the achievements for the two new floors. As always, there will be one achievement for reaching the floors, respectively, as well as one for clearing all the available challenges and for getting S-rank on both floors of the same theme.

Other than that, it’s more bug fixing and fixes on the menu for Teddy while me and Fred will continue on to the desert! Fun times :)

And the next step on the desert menu for me is of course to repeat the whole process of the previous cave map and create aaaall the rest of them in their most basic form to begin with: meaning walls, floors and any stairs/dropdowns/doorways:

The room above will be used twice for two different caves, and you’ll be able to tell them apart by the decorations.

Next, this big boss room will be cut off at the top…

…to make sure you don’t spot the boss if you were to enter the cave from this side:

Finally, it’s time to decorate everything! Starting with the first floor, I added a bunch of crystals in the walls, more mushroom types, and a bunch of small rocks to decorate the areas as a whole:

Then, it’s on to apply it all to all of the other maps! For this map I also created a stair leading to the upper floor:

…and for these, stairs leading to the lower floors. Here you can also see the difference between the two maps, making them quite distinct from one another even though they’re the same size:

As you may notice, the cave with the alleged boss fight is missing from this lineup: that’s because I will make a different kind of decoration for that area! Stay tuned ;)

First though, it’s time for another portrait, and another video! I decided to record this one since I was making this portrait at home rather than the office, and the quick export feature that I use to make the images that make up the GIF is broken there (I should fix it, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet). So for now, here’s another video featuring the creation of one of the card players in the saloon:

And finally, let’s end the week with one more portrait. This is a very important NPC, based on our composer: Andrew Riley of Lucky Lion Studios! His NPC will, naturally, be a musician, who among other things will appear in Arcadia to help you change the town music.

In story mode, he’ll be hanging out in the desert town, playing music to anyone who passes by. Maybe he’ll make an appearance somewhere else as well? Who can tell!

With the the buildings and their corresponding mechanics fully implemented into the new, revamped Arcadia, it’s now time for the final few things we want to add before it’s time to get to testing! We’ve always planned to add more randomized event rooms, and with the rework we feel it’s a good time to add in a few of them.

Here’s the one we’ll add this time around:

Buff Shrines
A shrine that, upon approaching it, gives you a random buff for a limited time. The buffs we’ve got planned are the usual basic ones: increased attack (both magic and physical), increased cast & attack speed and increased EP regeneration. But we’ve also come up with a few less common: one that makes your shield much stronger, one that increases your movement speed, and one in which you won’t get knocked back. These last three will need to be tested to see whether they will actually be nice buffs to have in this setting, but we have our hopes up.

Grindea’s Blessings
A room with a Grindea statue that grants you permanent (as in they last until you end the run) blessings. These can be a level up, a gold skillpoint, a few talent orbs, gold, or a heal!

Shadier Merchant
A mysterious salesman who sells powerful items and skillpoints in exchange for a portion of your max HP. He’ll have three items on display each time this room appears, and depending on the item he’ll reduce your max HP by a certain number.

Little J
…will start appearing as well! First as a prisoner which you’ll need to save from a mean mini-boss, but once he’s released he’ll start appearing in shop rooms, allowing you to upgrade your bow as you progress through the floors.

We have more rooms planned as well, but for now we’ll just include the ones mentioned above (we gotta get that update out after all – we’ve been at it quite a while!) Once they are implemented we’ll only need to do some slight inhouse testing before pushing it out to frontline though, so stay tuned!

Now, with the new event rooms decided upon and fully designed, it’s time to get to making some new graphics. Or rather bringing in and adjusting some of our existing ones to fit the theme of these rooms.

First we have the Blessings of Grindea rooms, which will give permanent upgrades of various sorts (or just a simple heal). Our idea here is that the chest will open up and reveal the blessing as you receive it:

Next, Shadier merchant and his carpets. We might add some more props to this guy in the future, or maybe make him a different character entirely (a vampire, perhaps, seeing as he wants your life force ;)). For now though, he sits by a couple of torches, with each item displayed on a tiny carpet in front of him:

Finally, the buff shrines. Our idea here is that a buff icon will appear in the middle of the circle as you approach it. A strategy might be to avoid going close enough to activate the shrine until you find the boss room – but on the other hand, getting there without the buff might be hard enough! What will you do?

 

With these implemented, the Arcadia rework is more or less done (aside from some smaller polish things). Now all that remains is some inhouse testing to make sure things aren’t too buggy for the frontline users.

…and it’s a good thing we did! One of the first things we noticed was a hard to figure out bug that crashed the game every time we entered a specific type of event room. There’s also been a lot of other smaller but kind of obvious bugs that we’ve been able to clean out that definitely would impact the player experience.

Other than that though, our testing sessions have gone really well. Most things work and the main new feature (the building your town thing) feels pretty satisfying, to us at least! The whole of Arcade Mode has gotten some upgrades pacing wise, with things unlocking as you progress, which feels a lot more satisfying.

There’s still some bug hunting to do, and some smaller things to fix, but you should be able to expect the update around the 10-12th April, if things go as planned.

After several hours played we’ve far from unlocked everything, which is great. While I only get to the second floor of Evergrind and Fred gets to the later floors of the whole thing, we’ve unlocked things in approximately the same amount of time, which is as we intended.

The time it takes to get enough gold to unlock new buildings actually feels surprisingly well balanced in our opinion, but that might of course change once we upload everything to Frontline and hear more opinions!

As always when looking at something you haven’t touched for a while, there’s some eyesores. In between testing (when waiting for Teddy to upload patches with bug fixes), I went ahead and fixed a bunch of smaller things:

I forgot to draw an arrow from the old to the new money bags, but needless to say, the left one is the old and the right one is the new. The portraits have been slightly touched up. I still have a dream of going back and remaking a bunch of the older portraits one final time before we release the game properly, but for now these quick touchups will have to do :)

With this testing we’re getting closer to an actual estimate of when the Arcadia rework will go live on Frontline as well! If nothing unexpected happens, we aim to have it done around 10-12th April, basically somewhere early that week. There are still some small things we need to add or fix graphics wise, and we have a lot more systems to test as well, but this estimate includes the time we expect to spend on bug fixes.

Finally, let’s talk about one of the things Fred has been working on recently: Loods! In Arcadia, this is the name of a new feature, namely these cute little beings who appear randomly in rooms in Arcade Mode runs:

The Loods are mysterious creatures of unknown origins. Some say they are linked to the goddess Grindea in some way, but who can tell for sure? What we do know, though, is that there are several kinds of Loods in different colors, and that upon defeating a Lood, it will turn into treasure!

What kind of treasure the Lood turns into depends on what kind of Lood it is. Currently there are four known kinds who give gold, items, talent orbs and health pots respectively. Defeating them in itself won’t be too hard, since they don’t attack – the challenge lies in defeating them before they get bored and run off! As such, once a Lood spawns you have a very limited time in which you may try to defeat it to get the treasure. Fail, and it will simply leave!

Once the Lood is defeated it will turn into an idle form, which, upon room completion turns into a chest. We hope that the Loods will make Arcade runs even more interesting, as it adds a little random factor to the regular rooms. We have thoughts of including evil Loods that you need to defeat in order to be spared from something annoying as well, but we’ll see how things go with these friendly Loods first.

Can’t wait to hear your feedback on all of this once the patch goes live!

Back to the desert town! Now we’ll move on to making smaller fixes around pretty much everywhere, closing a door to one of the houses we don’t have any particular plans for yet, adding some decorations and making other things blend in better. Also a new version of palm tree!

And here’s where we are right now (except for not having replaced some of the palm trees with version two yet):

Next step on going over the whole desert map to add details is that ship! Gonna add some more personality to it by adding some small things. And yes, the steering thingy is still not fixed by the end of this video, but it is on our fixlist:

Next stop on the des(s)ert menu (ha!) is finishing up a bunch of smaller places found in or around the town! There are two cave systems, for one, that we need to design, as well as that saloon.

The first cave system is found on the first map of the desert. The room in which you enter is filled with mining equipment – seems that Mt Bloom company has some business in other parts of the lands as well. The cacti in here will have a peculiar, mushroom-like shape. I wonder what significance that will have on any potential side quests in this area?

From the first room you’ll be able to go right to an encounter room, after which you’ll be able to make your way upstairs where there’s another exit.

The second cave system is found on the second map of the desert. Much like the first cave system, this too leads to an exit one level above. It also has a dead end sort of deal, but seeing as there’s a jump down thingy leading away from it, maybe it’s possible to reach the other end of this map through some other way… I wonder. ;)

Finally, the Saloon. Fred has already made a bunch of NPCs for this place, so I placed them around the room to get a feel for the place. One of the card player tables will be replaced with the Black Ferret’s table, and there will be a couple of non-occupied slot machines rather than a caveling at each one of them, but you get the idea. We’ve also got plans to put a dancer or two on the small stage next to the bar:

My next mission will be to finish up these areas with, you know, actual graphics. Then there’s one final place to design, but once that’s done Teddy should be able to implement the whole desert area up to the town in one go, without having to wait for more graphics from me and Fred. Of course, there’s usually a bunch of stuff we forget, so it probably won’t go as smoothly as that, but here’s to hoping!

Now, I’m still way behind on portrait creation, so here’s another random guy form the saloon. Drinking the day away (but I’m sure it’s lemonade, so that’s ok, right?):

And with the Arcadia rework drawing ever closer to a finish, I better step up the portrait making speed to keep up with all the characters Fred is making! As such, here’s another one.

I know I’ve mostly been doing GIFs for new portraits but this time my initial reflex was to start recording the whole process so I just went with it! This here is the portrait is of Jar Jar Potter, the resident potter of the desert town:

Time to start tying things together in the desert town (maybe we should come up with a name for it soon)! To start off this week I’m gonna focus on getting the groundwork (haha, get it) done, putting in some sand details and paths around the town, as well as making a few pieces of greenery to decorate the area.

First though, let’s deal with the walls surrounding the town! First I put in a quick something based on the piece of wall I made in the map outside of this one:

But I quickly felt this texture is way too busy, so instead I’m toning it down by a lot, so it doesn’t bother the eye quite as much:

Now, time to start working on that greenery! First up, a palm tree in three different sizes, and then, a little bush with berries:

Along the way I also adjusted the height of the wall, and made a few green versions of the cacti to go inside town:

Now it’s time to work on that sand beginning with the edges towards the water:

And then some sand surrounding the beach and the harbor:

And some decorative grass on said sand:

Applying the grass on the rest of the map:

…. and finally some of those roads, so you know where you’re going:

We continue to work on the details of the desert town, this time zooming into the harbor area. Crates, ropes and carpets are on the menu as we give this place a little more personality:

With so many new characters appearing in and around the desert town, I can only keep making portraits hoping to one day catch up with the number of sprites Fred makes for the area! Today it’d time to introduce the bartender who cleans glasses (and serves drinks) in the Saloon.

First, a reminder of his sprite from a while ago:

And then the WIP and finished version version:

And now, it’s my turn to take a quick break from the Desert Town to fix somethings for Arcadia! First up there’s a new NPC, who will appear as you develop the farm. Her character sprite was actually made a long time ago for story mode, where she’d play a mechanic part that was since scrapped:

Meanwhile, since Chika will be responsible for the eggs and hatching mechanics, we thought it was time to upgrade her from being permanently sad to actually enjoying her job a little (who doesn’t like chickens and/or eggs, right?):

Speaking of eggs, those things need drop appearances since you will be able to walk around with them in your inventory:

And as part of the farm experience, there will be a new perk as well! This one will make capturing eggs easier. Since my first attempt at this perk icon (the left) looked a bit like it had more to do with apples than pet capturing, I made a second version (on the right) which will more likely be the ones we’ll use:

And finally.. A strange little box:

What it will be used for? Announcing that you’ve captured a new fish, that will become available in your Aquarium in town, of course!

As for Fred, this week he has been battling a cold, but that didn’t stop him from making three salespeople for the market area of the desert town!

Here we have a shield maker polishing a shield, a potion salesman tempting you with one of those health pots (possibly?) and a weapon smith applying some final polish on her latest sword:

With the roof and stand decorations covering a little of their appearance, here’s a version showing what they look like without it (for science… or something):

There’s also a jar merchant, doing some final adjustments to his/her latest piece:

The desert town becomes more and more of a bustling town with these additions! We hope it’ll be able to rival Tai Ming in how alive it feels with NPCs and animations here and there. Don’t worry though, we won’t make it into a full “temple/dungeon” kind of deal. It’s just a chill place where you can grab some quests and upgrade your gear before heading on to the next real challenge :)