This week Teddy spent finishing up the translation tool (finally!), which should go live in a few days! He’s now looking into starting up that cutscene business for real, just as Fred has finished his part of that job, giving him a ton of sketched out animations to work with.

Now, instead of cutscene things, Fred is working on a new mini-boss that you’ll have to face soon after the cutscene ends:


Yes, it’s a Queen Bee!! :D Do you feel the horror?!

Vilya, meanwhile, has been all over the place, starting off by creating an interface for Mold Essence in Arcade Mode, which allows you to turn essence into visual upgrades & housing items (among other things):


She then moved back to the time travel area, creating hats, masks, drops and portraits to fill the area with life & loot:



05 - Finished Sprite

06 - Finished Sprite

And that’s all for this week! Next up will be prototyping the cutscene, bug fixing the translation tool, and preparing Evergrind City for the next installment of the main story :)

First of all, thank you all for your comments on last week’s blog post, where we asked about how to make it easier to understand the gold points! It seems like you guys are more or less as divided as we are, so we’ll keep thinking about that for a while longer.. :)

Now, on to this week’s post!

Last week we made an interesting decision! Many have asked us for a way to buy back items sold by mistake, and we’ve thought about how and where to add it. We figured, in the end, that we’d turn the shady merchant of Evergrind City into a “buy back” feature, rather than an accessory shop, and let the actual Accessory Shop have its own building, like the rest of the shops! As such, Vilya got to work to create the assets needed.

First up, we needed to decide on the perfect location. And which would be better than the closed off house next to the Blacksmith:

00 - Location

Next up, the building needed a sign, to fit in with the rest of shops! Here’s Vilya’s step-by-step of making it, as well as what it looks like on top of the building:

00a - Sign

01 - AccessoryShop

Now that we have the exterior, we need to create the interior as well, where you’ll actually buy stuff:

02 - AccessoryInterior

Finally, no shop is complete without it’s shopkeeper, right? And here she is:

03 - AccessoryGirl

Now, there are no animations from Fred this week, and that’s because in order to speed things up, he’s making placeholder animations rather than rendering them all to completion one by one. This way, he can make many more sketches & half-finished animations to give to Teddy, who in turn can start working on the cutscene using these placeholders instead of having to wait until every single animation is done! Afterwards, Fred can clean them up and Teddy will just replace the image source!

Pretty nifty, if you ask me. Of course, it also means no animations to show here for a while, as posting half-finished things has had a tendency to confuse people who believe it’s actually the finished thing. Hang in there for now!

Another week has gone past, and while Teddy is still working on the translation tool, he’s been making huge progress! A lot of his time recently has been spent implementing support for languages with different characters, specifically the Asian ones, as the fonts used for those need to be quite a bit bigger than latin alphabet ones.

As a result though, we can now play around with Google translated Japanese in the game:

Most likely everything written there is completely wrong, but hey, we’re no translators!

As we mentioned before, once this tool is done you’ll be able to browse translations through the game client. In order for that to work we need an interface, right? Here’s a mockup Vilya threw together:


Basically, the red squares are placeholders for the icons used by the translation.

The white boxes to the right of the squares are where the translation’s title will be displayed, and the “Subscribed” text will only appear on translations you’ve subscribed to (duh), which means they’ll be added next to your English (Default) selection in the game’s Options.

Beneath the icons are green and red arrows. These indicate how many upvotes vs downvotes each translation has gotten.

The speech bubble-icon will indicate what percentage of the dialogue has been translated, while the cogwheel next to it will tell you the completion percentage of system texts (interface/menu stuff mostly). We figured we’d separate these as many feel that the dialogues are more important than interface stuff, and having a single % would be misleading in cases where 100% of the dialogue has been translated but 0% of the interface, bringing the overall completion unfairly low.

Since we realize these icons may be a bit unclear on their own, we’ll add a description beneath the content box, explaining what the icons mean.

Finally, you’ll be able to use search box to filter the translations based on your language, and it’ll suggest languages based on what you’ve written already!


Next up, we’re thinking about how to make the use of Gold Skill Points more obvious. A lot of people seem to get a bit confused once they get their first Gold Point, unless they powerleveled a single skill the entire time, leaving them unable to do anything but use the skill point. If you’ve leveled multiple skills though, you’ll end up with a Gold Point you cannot use yet, and there’s no indicator in the menu for what the Gold Points are actually for. So, we’re looking for a way to make that more clear!

Here are some of our options:


Option #1: Keeping it as it is. Yes, this is an option as well. You get a gold point, but there’s no way of telling what it’s for until you’ve leveled a spell enough times to unlock its use – in the meanwhile you just have to keep guessing, or forget about it.

Visually, it’s probably the best looking option.


Option #2: Added silver and gold points to the leveling bar for clarity. This should make it clear that you can use gold points to level skills, but it could still confuse players: they get a gold point, and see that it can be used to level their skills, yet somehow they can’t use it yet?

We worry that with this option, players will believe that they can use silver and gold points to level skills simultaneously, and in the worst case scenario, believe it’s a bug or get frustrated when they can’t use them.


Option #3: Graying out and putting a lock on the gold part of the skill bar. Our hope with this option would be that people will understand that they can use gold points to level skills, but that they’re locked for now. Once you’ve put your 5 silver points in a skill, an animation + sound effect will play which unlocks the next 5 points (making the skill bar look like the one in Option #2, as illustrated under the second skill above).

Probably the most informative option – if people understand the visual cues – but also possibly the least visually pleasing.


Option #4: Basically a slightly less cluttered version of Option #3, where the grayed out portion of the bar will disappear, and the blue crystal will turn yellow once you start using gold points (as illustrated under the second skill above).

Which one do you prefer? Let us know in the comments!


To end this post, we have some regular art stuff as well. Vilya has continued working on both backgrounds and characters:


And Fred continues to create dragon animations:


See you next week! :D

We’re still a long way to go before everything is ready for this epic cutscene, but Fred is working as fast as he can! Here’s another animation, featuring the dragon as it wakes up (gasp!):


While Fred is busy animating stuff for the flashback cutscene with Charlotte and the dragon, Teddy has jumped into creating a new and improved version of the translation tool, that will work with Steam workshop! This means you awesome translators out there no longer have to go through the hassle of zipping and uploading stuff to the forums every time there’s a tiny update.

Also, once the tool is finished, we’ll implement a way to browse translations directly through the game, so this should make things a lot easier for those wanting to use the translations as well.

As for Vilya, she actually went away on a riding camp last week, but she was kind enough to prepare a bunch of portraits for this post, which were also posted on her blog while she was gone:



The first are variations of the Evergrind Arena receptionist, which will appear in other areas where it makes sense to have a front desk manager (though they will probably be regular NPCs and not host a set of challenges like the original receptionist)!

Second row is a bunch of people from the time travel area, and the last one (with text box added for effect) is the portrait of a mini-boss that will appear later on!

We pushed out another update for the Frontline beta earlier during the week. It mostly contains minor changes and bugfixes, but also the long awaited Weapon & Shield style slots! You can read up about the changes more thoroughly over here.

While Teddy has put most of his efforts into the update, Vilya and Fred have been busy working on assets for the cutscene we talked about last week. We mentioned that the players mother Charlotte would make her first appearance in it, which means she needed a proper face!

03 - Charlottes01 04 - Charlottes02
Something that sets Charlotte apart from other NPC’s is that she’ll take on the same color palette as your own character. Vilya put together a ton of different hair and skin colors so we can mix and match it as we please!

Fred managed to finish up the spriting stage and dove head first into the animations for the scene.

DragonSleep Charlotte

Things have calmed down after the Steam Early Access launch, and things have gone back to normal here in the Pixel Ferrets office!

Vilya has spent a lot of time doing portraits recently, both for the new area(s) and for new fae that will appear in Santa Fae:


Some of the old fae (and the new) also needed new expressions, seeing as the life of a fae is filled with both joy and horror currently:

She has also, of course, been doing new backgrounds for the next temple, which means more interiors left in ruin:


Fred, meanwhile, has been creating stuff for a flashback cutscene that will take place once you get back to the HQ in the next part of the story! This whole thing will involve two things primarily: your mother Charlotte, and…. a dragon?!

Now, as for Teddy, he’s been mostly busy implementing a bunch of UI improvements (Sword and Shield style-slots, wohoo!) as well as tweaks and fixing bugs revealed to us by our awesome beta testers! Once these updates roll out and are confirmed stable we’ll start updating Frontline only for a while again, starting with the cutscene/flashback thingy mentioned above.

See you next week! :D

First of all, thank you all for your support and awesome e-mails, helpful forum comments, and everything else related to our Steam Early Access launch last week! You guys have been amazing.

In terms of how the EA launch went, it was well over our expectations. We honestly didn’t think much was gonna happen, seeing as we did literally 0 PR for the launch, but apparently word of mouth (and Steam’s discovery features) are more powerful than we thought. Because of this there were a couple of hectic days where most of our time went into answering e-mails and solving new bugs, but thankfully (?!) most of that seems to have calmed down for now. :)

So, yesterday we patched the game (both Stable and Frontline) and added a bunch of bug fixes!

If you had issues with co-op before, chances are your problems have been solved now – or so we hope! We also added a bunch of new hairstyles that can be tried out at Francisco’s stand in Evergrind City or when you create a new character. We’ll update both builds at least once more before focusing on Frontline again for a while – if you’re a new player and are unsure of what I’m talking about, check out this thread on the forums to see the difference between Stable and Frontline beta, and how to change between them.

Some of you have noticed that the DRM-free version available through the Humble widgets and on the Humble Store is outdated (same goes for the Demo download through our site). We’ll update both of those once we’ve patched the Stable one last time in the coming week(s)! In the meanwhile, if you’re looking to play the Demo, know that a more recent version can be downloaded through Steam (there’s a button which says ‘Download Demo’ right next to the ‘Early Access Game’-box).

Now, we’ll continue to work on the next part of the Story Mode! Vilya is of course already working on backgrounds for the next temple, some which can be seen here:

LeftHouse F2
LeftHouse F2 - Present
Barracks F2

I think we’ll leave it at that for this week, tune in next Monday for more updates on our progress! And again, thank you all for your support :)

Instead of a regular Weekly Recap, here’s an announcement for you:

Secrets of Grindea is officially live on

Steam Early Access!


For those of you who are looking to buy the game now that it’s properly on Steam, it might be a good idea to look into which beta version you’re the most interested in. Here’s a forum guide showing how to swap between the two (Stable and Frontline) and why you may or may not want to do it.

We’d also like to remind those who already bought the game that it’s now possible to review the game (or at least, what’s available so far) on Steam, so if you want to do that, that’d be awesome!

Whether you’re a new or old player, we welcome you into our community and hope that you enjoy the game so far! As always, feel free to drop by our forums to ask questions, leave bug reports/feedback or simply stay a while and chat :)

The Steam Early Access launch draws closer! Either today or tomorrow we’ll patch the gold charges into the game, and once they’ve been tested and polished (certain visual elements are still missing) I think we’re good to go :D

SO, once the game is patched we ask all Frontline users to help us bug test these babies! Perhaps it’s time to try out a completely new build? :)

In the meanwhile, here’s a few GIFs featuring gold charges that will be available in the patch once it goes live:

Click to view full size!

First up is Frosty Friend! He’s certainly gotten bigger, and as of the next patch, you can give him commands!

He starts out with a defensive stance which increases his DEF and regenerates HP slowly if he’s out of combat, the silver charge unlocks a DPS boosting skill that lasts a few seconds, and the gold charge has an AoE slam attack (pictured above)! :)

Click to view full size!

Here’s the Heroic Slam! The animation has gotten a bit more elaborate, as you can see, but otherwise it’s pretty much the same old skill, but with increased damage output!

Click to view full size!

The Meteor has increased in size, and also leaves behind flames that burn enemies passing through!

Click to view full size!

Finally, the Cloud Strike, aka the summoned cloud! He’s as happy as ever, striking left and right with his fearsome thunder. Other than being bigger and meaner, he also has a chain lightning effect on certain attacks :)

We haven’t stopped working on the next temple either! Here are some new backgrounds and character portraits that Vilya has been working on:

Barracks F0

Barracks F1

05 - Sprites

05 - sprites (1)

05 - sprites (2)

Once the patch goes live we’ll make a post on Facebook, Twitter, and of course, details will be found over at the Patch Notes part of our forums :)

The work on the Gold Charges continues! There are now prototypes available for all skills, but a lot of them still need to have their animations polished so we’ll save showing those off for later. The Whirlslash gold charge has been more or less finished up though, and here you can see a gif of what that looks like in action:

Click to view full size!

You guessed it! Once you unlock the Gold charge, you can now move while using it! Pretty epic, no? The damage might be sliiightly unbalanced in this GIF tho.. ;)

Vilya has returned to working on the next Temple area, which in reality is more of a village. That means the future will hold lots of houses! Here’s the interior of two, with progress videos to go with them:


Click to view full size!

Uncle Farms Hus

Click to view full size!

Now, no village is complete without people that live there, right? Here’s a couple of portraits of people that you will be able to meet, one an adventurer exploring the depths of Mt:Bloom, the other an inhabitant of the village itself:

05 Sprite

06 - Sprites

Also, as Teddy’s properly adding the skills into the game engine, it’s not very uncommon for the animations to go through some iterations. The gold charge for the Ice Spike ended up needing some extra pazazz, as the old animation looked a bit to funky on it’s own. Below is a (hopefully) more intimidating ice spike, couple with some stray left over animations for the Frosty Friend!