So to start off this week, we decided to change some things around, so instead of having the previous portrait I made for the scarecrow girl’s human form, I made this new one which matches the original scarecrow portrait a bit better:

As mentioned a while ago, we decided to take a look at the list of things remaining and make a sort of priority list of the things we still want to add to the game. We’ve thrown out some more things that will slow down the last bit of production, and for now the next bunch of major things we’ll focus on is this:

The Backer Items

As you may know, early in development we had some more expensive tiers over at the preorder page of our site, where you could opt into having an item of your choice (or such things) added to the game. A lot of the that purchased that tier have now messaged us back letting us know what sort of items they want added, so one of our top priorities is sorting those out! We’ve already begun with quite a few, but there are still more to come!

Trick & Treat

These guys will be sorted out properly, although not in the way you’d think. We’re replacing our original idea with their house (which was a several floor long gauntlet pretty much), and replacing it with an ordinary home (well, it might still be a creepy home, but just a home for now). If we end up doing something more major with Trick & Treat, we’ll do it post release as a Halloween update, since we don’t feel it’s vital for the game to be finished and we sort of like the idea of adding some seasonal stuff post release to keep people invested in the game :)

The Card Collection Room

As mentioned before, one of the keys to getting the true ending will be collecting all the cards, and as such I’ll need to make the hall where you’ll receive your reward for finishing up your collection.

Lin Mei the Ninja will be added to a house in Port Monnaie, where she’ll end up giving you one of the backer items.

The Arena will be sorted out in the way we mentioned last week, and the Memory Room will be transformed into a conference room.

There will be Books added to the library and across the world, where you can read about a variety of things.

We’ll revamp Trophies, removing some old trophies and adding more interesting ones. We’ll also add some kind of progress bar so you can tell how far you’ve gotten on each trophy!

….and some other things we’ll hopefully get to (which I’ll talk more about another day)! These are sort of in order of importance now, so the higher up the more likely it is we’ll go about adding it.

Now, as part of one of our backer items, we’re creating a balloon stand during the festival, where a NPC will sell a bunch of balloons you can put in your home! As part of that, a bunch of drop sprites were needed:

And now, yet another mixed bag of additions, featuring another expression, the shop title for the balloon stand, and some drop appearances for new items:

In Fred’s department, there’s a couple new weapons, the transformation of the scarecrow back to a human, and some weird contraption for which you’ll find an use in a later quest! ;) Stay tuned for more!

This week, we’ll continue with some portraits, starting with a strange mandarine you’ll find in the Pumpkin Woods!

Next up, some improvements to the ship that I made previously! Adding a bunch of details and redesigning its look somewhat so make it look even more different from the other ship in the harbour:

As we’ve continued to discuss where to go from here, we’ve made some changes in our priorities for the remaining tasks. One such thing that we’ve discussed back and forth since almost the start of our process of making this game is the Memory Room, where you battle bosses you’ve previously defeated in Story Mode. We’ve never really decided on whether to keep the room around or not, but now in this hopefully ‘final’ discussion, we’ve decided on some changes that will affect it, and more specifically, the arena.

Right now, there are two categories in the arena, regular challenges and VS, though we haven’t added any modes for the later. In the future, there will still be two categories in the arena, but we’re changing it around so there will be regular challenges and boss battles instead. As such, if you go to the boss battle section, you’ll get a list of all the previous bosses you’ve defeated, and will have the option to battle them again, as you would in the memory room. The regular challenges section will remain largely unchanged, though we’re playing around with the idea of having the challenges scale to your character’s strength.

Because of this move, there will be an empty room to the left in the HQ, where the previous memory room used to be. This room will instead be changed into a sort of planning/conference room, where a few older collectors will hang around with a blackboard, planning the future quests for the collectors!

What will end up happening with the rest of the HQ will be decided in the near future, as we continue arranging these final tasks in order of importance! Stay tuned :)

Now, some additional expressions and portraits for the crew involved in the harbor quest in Port Monnaie, as well as some final fixes of the ship!

Now, in Fred’s department, he’s been busy making all sorts of characters and details, some of which include Trunk (which you’ll stumble upon as a cameo character in Story Mode):

Some sails for the ship in the harbour, as it heads off as part of the quest we’re working on:

The sprite for Fark, who will be creating a variety of sounds:

And the balloon seller, which will appear in Evergrind City during the festival:

When we came back from our week off, we quickly decided it’s time to make some more fixed plans on how to proceed with the game in the near future! As you know, we’re currently working on finishing up Story Mode and we have a long list of things we’d like to add, but we don’t want it to go on forever so our next mission will be to prioritize among the list and see what it’s possible to cut and what we definitely want to add to the game.

One such super important thing we’ve been talking about it the true ending. We’ve known for a very long time that you’ll be able to do the final battle in two different ways, one which leads to a less ideal ending and one that is the true ending, which can only be unlocked after achieving certain things within the game. We haven’t been too sure what these parameters would be before, but after our discussions today we feel fairly certain that you’ll need to do these three things:

* Read a letter from your mother, that will help flesh out the ending a bit.

* Do a Boss battle against Bishop (a fight we’ve been brainstorming on and off for quite a while, which we’re quite excited about! We actually already have the background music for this fight as well..)

* Collect all Cards!

Previously, we wanted the true ending to be quite easy to get, but with the addition of the card requirement, it’ll obviously be a lot more difficult, however, we feel that with all things considered, this will be better suited to the game (I mean, we make jokes about it all the time, but it’s still called Secrets of Grindea, right? ;))

Hopefully by next week we’ll have a more updated list of what exactly we’ll add and what things are in the risk zone of being cut in an effort to finally finish things up properly!

Now, time for a bag of mixed stuff! Some portraits, some item sprites, and a remake of the grave outside the caves in Seasonne!

Next up, a new boat appears in the desert town! Using the previous one as a base, I made some changes to its shape and colours! This ship will be in Port Monnaie temporarily, until you solve a little quest :)

Next, the portrait of one of the guys working in the docks, which will hand you a quest relating to that final quest of Steve’s:

There’s no way we could finish Steve’s story arc without yet another encounter with mushrooms, right? Well, here we go… :)

We’re back in action, and with our batteries fully recharged! To celebrate, I decided to remake the portrait of the old math genius fascinated with the number 3, making him slightly older and with his signature 3 on his clothing:

Another portrait we decided to remake is that of the ninja (again), since we decided to change the quest/secret to getting her ninja outfit! Quite interesting getting back to a bunch of remakes, but that’s because we’ve been having a bunch of talks about the future of the game and moving things around a bit (more on that later on). For now though, here’s the ninja remake in her “regular” clothes:

And of course, she also needs a version with the ninja outfit in question, the portrait which will replace the current old one. Thanks to these minor changes we’ll be able to keep the sprite itself looking as is, so less rework for Fred!

Now, since we’re on the topic of new portraits, it’s also time to introduce this little fae, who will have the very important job of polishing the ice of the frozen fae in Santa Fae!

Finally, some of the things Fred has made for the areas we’ve been working on currently, including the obstacle in Temple of Seasons that can only be removed by turning the room into spring, the ninja in her sad version after failing the trials, and the ghost haunting Seasonne!