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  • Writer's pictureLucy Rodham

Development Log 11/09/2023 (Big Update!)

Updated: Oct 20, 2023


Hello there! Welcome back to my game development blog where I share my experiences as an indie game developer/artist and show off the realistic workload I do throughout the week. Here I showcase everything from finished work to silly little sketches, I aim to share my experiences in daily life as a student and game artist to hopefully break down the idea of overworking ourselves in the creative industry and fight against crunch culture. Firstly I would like to apologize for being so quiet across all of my socials and since my last blog post a few months ago, honestly, I needed a break. I got burnt out and had to take the summer to regain my passion for creative work. I strongly believe in taking a break if you need to, I know personally I struggle to separate art as a hobby and career. Often leading to me overworking myself. I'm constantly learning and striving to be a better artist which is why I'll be honest in this blog, Burnout is something that happens to everyone but taking a break for a while and focusing on other things definitely helps.


This post is the start of my weekly blog all over again. In this post, I'll talk about:

  • What's happened

  • What's happening now

  • The future

I hope you enjoy reading. :)


What's Happened?

So, where have I been? Over the past few months, SpiritSweeper released its Beta demo, I took part in the Falmouth Games Academy Expo 2023, I Graduated from University and got accepted into Master's studies!

To begin, I'm exited to announce the Beta demo of SpiritSweeper is now available for free on Itch.io!

Play Here:

Trailer:


For those who may be new to my work, SpiritSweeper is a cozy cleaning game where you must clean houses that are being invaded by spirits and clean up the mess they've made for pocket money so you can customize your treehouse. Our team of ten, 3rd year Falmouth Games Academy students have been working since September to get the Beta demo ready for our final deadline. During the year we partnered with Launchpad Games to form our indie game studio Strange Folk Studios LTD.


I've been very busy to trying to meet the deadline for SpiritSweeper's demo, which is one of the main reasons I've been so quiet online. For the most part, I was drawing assets and making Expo promotional material but I did also do some playtesting of the game to help find bugs. Here's a selection of work for Strange Folk that I completed over the last few months!

Expo Promotional Art:

  • Image 1: SpiritSweeper promotional artwork for the passports given out at the Falmouth Games Expo 2023. It depicts Oose, your companion spirit in the game, and once people have played the game at the event they got a stamp to fill in his face.

  • Image 2: Fully finished Expo promotional art that I showed off as a work in progress in a past blog post. It was split into 2 roller banners that were displayed at our booth. It shows Reenie running after a Cactitot spirit in Granny's kitchen while Oose tries to get the spirit imprint out of his fur.

  • Image 3: Promotional panel for the Falmouth Games Expo 2023

Game Assets:

  • Image 4: Neutral face sprite image for Oose

  • Image 5: Smiling face sprite image for Oose

  • Image 6: Small animation of Reenie flourishing their broom then pointi9ng the red crystal towards the camera.


During the 23rd to the 27th of May the Falmouth Games Academy hosted its yearly Expo on Penryn campus. My development team Strange Folk Studios had our own stall there showcasing SpiritSweeper! It was a great event where we got to show off our hard work and celebrate all the other fantastic work created by individuals across the Games Academy this year. Here's a few photos of our booth at the expo, personally I was most exited to see my promotional artwork on the two large roller banners we had!

  • Image 7: Photo of our booth setup showing a live feed of the player PC so passers by could view gameplay. in front of the screen are 2 Steam Decks with playable versions of the game loaded on them.

  • Image 8: A different angle of the booth showing merchandise hung on the wall, the couch and one of the roller banners

  • Image 9: A photo of the booth pre-setup. In the photo I am seen stood next to the 2 roller banners with my work on them. I am doing 2 thumbs up towards the camera with a goofy grin. :) (They were so much taller than me!)


This summer I also Graduated the Game Development: Art course at Falmouth University,

the last 3 years have flown by but the amount of progress I've made in my quality of work is astounding. Something which I'd love to go into detail about some other time.

  • Image 10: Photo of myself stood outside holding a scroll, wearing the full graduation attire at the ceremony.







As a side note I would also like to announce that I got to work on a very cool project! I got the chance to work with Wreck Rebirth "a 1 person punk/post-punk project from Ireland (https://wreckrebirth.bandcamp.com/) to make the album art for their newest album "Short Songs For Long People". This was a blast to make and something completely out of my comfort zone!

  • Image 11: CD Album art for Short Songs For Long People by Wreck Rebirth, on the left is the back of the cover, features space for track listings on a white sheet being held up by 2 very long people. The right of the image is the front cover, it features 3 odd looking, long-bodied people tied together in a knot.


What's Happening Now?

Recently I've been slowly getting back into dev work, whilst also taking on a few DIY projects to fill the extra time I've got over summer. I got accepted into the Game Art Master's at Falmouth University which starts late September so I'm mostly preparing for that and enjoying the calm before classes start again. I'm both nervous and exited about starting the course but I'm looking forward to seeing what I can make and what I learn next.

Here's some of the work I've done recently!

  • Image 13: Sketch of myself striking a pose as to show off something (I wonder what I could be showing off?)

  • Image 13: Portrait of my Dungeons and Dragons character Mef smoking a cigar.

  • Image 14: Most recent full piece of work, it is a perspective commission piece of a Tiefling character stepping towards the camera. Image 15: Quick drawing and sketch of a friends cat called squash Image 16: A sketch of a more stylised version of my persona/way I draw myself. I'm making a confused expression and shrugging.

  • Image 17: A digital painting I'm currently working to improve my realism skills, on the right is the portrait I'm using as reference (Unknown person, will update if I can find out and credit)


The Future

So what's the plan now? Well I'm starting my studies again soon, Strange Folk is working behind the scenes, and I'm looking to open my commissions again soon. I will be posting more blog updates in the future and although I'm not 100% sure what's in store for me next, I hope that you can join me on the journey.


Once again, thank you for taking the time to read through this big update! I Hope to see you again soon! :)



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