Status Updates posted by Yotes
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #107 (New Drawings, Bug Fixes)
DevLog #109 (Valentines Day)
Been drawing lots of pretty pixel people. Bigger versions of the NPCs used before. Regarding the overworld's art direction, I think of it as a mix between Gen 3 Pokémon & Wind Waker styles while the battle scenes are a sort of Final Fantasy 6 & My Little Pony art style with a Pokémon interface.
Hoping to get some more tiles redone and fix all the bugs from the previous version by Friday so I can try to get a new update out before the 25th. I still have a bunch of moves that need to be animated and lord knows fixing the controller input bug is going to take a while.
Read On: http://www.yotesgames.com/2017/02/battle-gem-ponies-devlog-109-valentines.html
Battle Gem Ponies: New Look Implemented!
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #110 (The Redesigns)
The long-promised February update is coming this Friday and one last week of bug crunching is underway to make sure it plays perfectly. This way, future builds will be off to a fresh start and development can be focused on new features.
Check out this week's progress on the dev blog: http://www.yotesgames.com/2017/02/battle-gem-ponies-devlog-110-redesigns.html
Battle Gem Ponies Greenlight Update! (Demo 6.5)
Time for round two! Battle Gem Ponies is back and better than ever thanks to feedback from the Steam Greenlight community! The turn-based pony RPG now features much more original looking characters, various new environment sprites, and some renamed moves and characters.If you want to check out the newest build for yourself, just click the link below. If you'd like to see this game on Steam someday, be sure to give a thumbs up on the Greenlight page!(And check back for more monthly updates!)
DevLog #111 (Aiming for Code Complete)
Another milestone down, another 5 months to go. Showing the game to new people irl and emailing folks left n' right to get this game out there! With the graphical update in place conversation seems to be shifting towards worries about the gameplay being too similar Pokémon. But I have confidence that the final version will make it very clear that the gameplay of Battle Gem Ponies, at it's core, is Pokémon with more challenge and less filler.
So, About BGP's New Look and Copyright...
This is a post about clearing the air of any C&D worries. Written to break down just how legally safe this is once and for all since the majority of comments I see for this game revolve around conversations of "this will be taken down because X looks like Y".
Hopefully some explanation combined with the game's recent graphical update on Steam Greenlight will put those Cease & Desist concerns to rest.
Get the full blog post here: http://www.yotesgames.com/2017/03/so-about-bgps-new-look-and-copyright.html
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #115 (Miss one Mark, Make Another)
The Battle Gem Ponies Steam Greenlight Campaign is still ongoing, but the service is rumored to be shutting down some time next month. I can still update the game and hope for a miracle before Greenlight closes it's doors for good, but at this point I'm not expecting to make it. BGP will be pushed as a mobile game, but will still have PC/Mac/Linux versions available through Itch.io.
It doesn't spell DOOM for the project or anything, it's just a demonstration that people need something more polished than what I launched with to make it at this point in Steam Greenlight's troubled lifespan. I'll try again via Steam Direct once the game is actually complete and see if I can get a different reaction on that platform. Just hoping that it doesn't end up costing an arm and a leg.
Read More: http://www.yotesgames.com/2017/03/battle-gem-ponies-devlog-115-miss-one.html
The latest version of Battle Gem Ponies has arrived! This update features randomized wild encounters, 6 new ponies, and the ability to ride on some of them. Other features have been tinkered with but are incomplete for the most part. Update 7.0 will have to be the feature-complete tech-demo of the game, bug-checked and released by the end of April.Looks like Steam Greenlight will be shutting down permanently any day now, so this may be the last chance for the game to get through. So, if you'd like to see this game on Steam someday, be sure to give a thumbs up on the Greenlight page!
Download Link on Steam Greenlight!
(And check back here for more monthly updates!)
Development is crawling along. Coding each attack move by using special keywords seems so simple in theory, but in practice, so many tiny things go wrong and break the battle system in a variety of brain-melting ways.
Get a peek at what was done this week! --> Battle Gem Ponies Development Blog
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #129 (FREEDOM!! And... Pressure!?)
I WAS planning on celebrating Independence Day with the sweet, freeing release of BGP Pre-Alpha 7.0, but then I checked my emails and something came up... Turns out I'll be hosting the Battle Gem Ponies panel at BronyCon 2017 after all! Now pressure's on because I have exactly one month to build an impressive Alpha to showcase in front of the biggest crowd yet.
Come get a big, juicy gamedev update on the official Battle Gem Ponies blog.
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #133 (About That New Battle System)
Still hard at work getting a stable, polished BronyCon build ready. I wanna put on a good show, and that's gonna require a couple more late nights of work and a lot of afternoons spent testing. But it'll all be worth it if we can get that crowd to cheer...
Take a look at this week in gamedev below!
Official Yotes Blog
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #135 (BronyCon Vacation)Reunited with my very own BronyCon fam!
I spent just about all of August recharging my creative batteries, experiencing new places, meeting new folks, bonding with long-time friends, learning more about myself, and evaluating my life goals. Also, I played Sonic Mania and it's got me hella juiced up to become a developer making things people could go nuts about.
In short, the BronyCon panel went well, I've already got plans for how I'm going to celebrate it being complete next year, I'm brainstorming convention booth setups, and I'm more eager than ever to somehow get the project done in time for Christmas!
More on all that in the development blog: Yotes Games Blog
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #137 (Sprite Week)
Once again, drawing these sprites takes forever. But the first frame is always the hardest because I want it to look just right before I take apart all its pieces and animate them. These battle sprites are what the players will be staring at for the longest time and it's through these battle animations and flavor texts that I get folks to fall in love with my characters.
I have to get this right. I have to convey personality out of each of these ponies. I want players to say "Wow!" or "Ooo..." or "Aww!" or "Holy CRAP!!" when they see these things for the first time.
Blog Here: yotesgames.com
DevLog #139 (Make It Well Thought Out)
Most of the week has been all about planning every small detail to come in the full game. Where each item is placed and why. A believable reason for every character's decision, interaction, and motive. Logical consistency throughout the game world. Something interesting to do in every room, an emotional roller coaster, a varied color palette, and a sense of discovery and fun that'll keep players invested even beyond the credits.
Read More: http://www.yotesgames.com/2017/09/battle-gem-ponies-devlog-139-make-it.html
DevLog #145 (A Full & Colorful Roster)Ponatina's Elemental Forms
Here it is! This game's Eevee equivalent and starter pony Ponatina and all 18 of her various specialized forms. Which is your favorite? Which looks the worst? I'd love to read your thoughts on them in the comments.
Get the rest of this week in gamedev on the main blog!
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #146 (Impressionable Ponies)Some of the bigger battle sprites.(the Ultra forms are a lot less pony-like)
The Ponatina post last week made a lot of impressions and it's refreshing to see so many pony fans excited for this game. It's lit a fire under the Yotes Games balloon and now we're soaring straight to our destination!
Every pony has a second draft design and is now in the final nebulous zone of "what color combination looks best" or "maybe this should be the Ultra form and the base form should be toned down a little". It annoys me as a developer because it's taking so long, but this is arguably the most important part.
These ponies are what players will attach themselves to. If they look awesome enough, and have enough personality, it'll spawn fan art, discussion, attention, and thus sales. All very important if I want Yotes Games to be a viable career choice.
Get the rest of this week in gamedev on the Yotes Blog.
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #148 (Paper Maps)
Been taking on the task of translating rough map sketches into detailed exact maps on graph paper. It's a matter of putting every detail from the design document down and marking out exactly how many steps it takes to get anywhere, roughly how many screens a zone will be, where items will be hidden, which buildings and NPCs I'll have to draw, and all the minor visual details.
All this fuss so I only have to lay down tiles in the editor like I'm following a blueprint. And these definitely help make the game feel more real. Actually seeing the game world has me super pumped to make it happen in full colorful pixelated glory!
It's a tedious process though and will probably take another day or two, especially when I double check to make sure the cutscenes can play out how I want them to. Also, still working on the last few Ultra form sprites to show off next week.
Read More: Battle Gem Ponies Blog
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #149 (Stuck on Alicorns)(Art by Jowybean)An example of epic looking MLP alicorns in action.
Progress has been stalled this week as the final few pony designs are being turned into pixel art. The sprites just didn't seem to fit the idea of "The Epic Legendary Alicorns" in a way that made me picture players saying "I want that one!" so I keep drafting new ways to make these ponies look a little cooler than the other ones.
For the love of me I just can't figure it out. Spent way too much time staring at the sprites and starting over. Not to mention their alternate forms related to their special capture mechanics. Those have to look feeble in comparison, yet still cool and capable of combat.
This is tricky, and it may take another couple days to get everything all cleaned up, but I want the placeholders and base sprites done in time to start programming after devlog #150. But for the time being, get DevLog #149 below...
Read the rest here: yotesgames.com
The pieces are all lined up. Just a week or two of coding and another week of polish, and I'll be set to start shaping the world of Battle Gem Ponies! A playable version of the story mode at long last! I'm super eager to share all the recent progress (and there was a lot) on this week's devlog, so check it out!
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #156 (End of January...)
Tiles, tiles, tiles galore! Wanna see some tiles? I'll show you some tiles anyway. Because that's what I spent most of this week staring at, touching up, reorganizing, and reconstructing. Right now this is the step I'm tackling to make sure I have all the pieces I need to build the BGP world that currently exists on 100 sheets of graph paper. The gamedev grind never seems to end, but my confidence in the project increases by the day!
Here is where we stand with Battle Gem Ponies at the end of the first month of 2018!
Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #159 (Prep-Work)
Still setting up the new BGP workflow. Gotta convert the spritesheets to super-efficient packed-textures, recreate all the prefabs using the new Unity systems, and start painting all the tilemaps that will make up the region of Pinto...
Exciting things are coming, and if you're curious about the steps towards this glory, then check out this week's devlog!