Welcome to the IndieDen, home of the SP Ent Team Blogs. Here you can find a growing body of writings from various members of SP Ent. on many subjects, including game dev, games, and entertainment. Our blogs are organized into Dens, for instance, the ArtDen, and, the CodeDen. There are also two special blogs: Paw Prints, which contains writings and musings about development and running an indie company from our Executive Director and Executive Producer Chris McKillip, and The Periwinkle Paw, which contains the written perspective of indie wife, Lead editor, and assistant producer, KC McKillip. Please read, comment, and enjoy.

Fall 2021 Dev Update
Chris McKillip
/ Categories: GameDen

Fall 2021 Dev Update

Our Later 2021 Dev Update is Landing in the Fall

A lot’s been going on since our last update, and not all of it has been work on our games, though a large portion of it is connected there. You may know about the research trips we’ve been taking for Raptors’ Realm, which we’ve previously written about in “What’s with All These Nature Pics?” And it’s sequel Part Two. We’ve discussed the research we’ve been doing on both habitat for our levels, and animals in the wild, for, well . . . our game animals. That’s a large part of what our big trip in August was about, and it was great, we saw a whole range of habitats which various raptors call home. We also had opportunities to witness a lot of wildlife and their behavior, including some very cool behavior of raptors themselves, such as two Redtail hawks interacting with each other in midair acrobatics, and an Osprey protecting its nest and fledglings from a marauding raven. But in addition to doing habitat and wildlife research, this trip was also focused on expanding our connections with more organizations and people with expertise in both raptors and animals in general. That part of the trip was also productive as we connected with several new people, including the Raptor Education Foundation in Brighton, Colorado, The University of Wyoming Invertebrates Lab in Laramie, Wyoming, and the Teton Raptor Center in Wilson, Wyoming. We also got a chance to visit HawkWatch International’s headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah, where we got to meet a larger part of the crew and show them the game, which was really awesome. All these connections are allowing us to expand our knowledge of raptors, and to consult with experts about the look, behaviors, and movements of the birds, as well as growing our knowledge of the habitats and animals which surround them, all of which is important to getting the look and feel, and game interactions just right in Raptors’ Realm.

Swan Valley Osprey Nest

Now you may be asking: why we are doing this now? Well, now that we’re finishing up the prototype, we’re beginning the process of shifting from placeholder assets to the actual assets which we’ll be using in the final game. Along with that process comes the need for research which allows us to create those assets, including the art, animation, and interaction.
As we continue to gather research to shape the assets in Raptors’ Realm, we are also advancing the level building tools, the animation for everything that moves in the game, and the AI for our animals. All of these systems and more have seen continuing work over the past several months. We’ve also been prepping for the move of the game to Unreal Engine 5 which is looking awesome at the moment and which we can’t wait to start using for the development of all our titles.

That covers development, but that’s not all we’ve been working on lately. We’ve also been developing our store. We are building a new line of products connected to our games which should appeal to our audiences as well as to a broader audience to help us get the word out about our games. We’ve created the first branch of the store, The Shop on Spring, where we will be offering most of our products on a storefront which can be connected to our social media. We’re also working on some other vectors for offering our products to people which are still in progress. All these different merch lines will be centralized in The Shop, our merch page here on the SP Ent. website. If you’re interested in what we have to offer, which includes apparel, poster and canvas prints, and soon, digital products then head over to The Shop where you can check out our featured products and navigate to our larger merchandise collections at each storefront as we get them up and running. Oh, and we plan to have a full launch of The Shop once things are more complete.

That’s about everything we’ve been doing for now. If you would like to know more about our art pipeline and what we do to develop our art check out the ArtDen for articles in that vein. If you want to get a glimpse of the current photos we have made available to the public, check out our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We are also planning to post an IndieDen article talking about the research locations we’ve been to along with a small group of extra photos only available here, so keep a sharp eye out for that. Finally, be sure to return to see our series about doing research with our partners and experts which we will begin posting soon.

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Chris McKillip

Chris McKillipChris McKillip

SP Ent. Executive Director

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Full biography

Executive Director at SP Entertainment, he runs the show.


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