Hello adventure game enthusiasts! Let me begin by introducing myself; my name is Evgeniy Lebed and I am one of the developers of Aura: Fate of the Ages and the sequel, The Sacred Rings. Our project leader, Sergey Nartovich, has once again given me this honorable task, no sarcasm intended, of writing these developer diaries. In this first diary I will walk you through a few of the basic steps involved in developing The Sacred Rings.
The first step in making any adventure game is to design a suitable and entertaining storyboard and plot. This is where we encountered our first major difficulties. For many days, and sometimes nights, we sat at the office planning and drawing this storyboard. I'm sure that you can understand where the difficulties arose here; everyone wanted to input their opinions about how the story would take shape, and in most cases, all of the opinions contradicted each other. One major difference that The Sacred Rings is going to feature is a much more developed plot. Like I said above, we have spent countless hours trying to develop an entertaining chronicle that would appeal to everyone. Since there were so many of us trying to input our ideas, we resolved that it would be impossible to merge all of these ideas into one concrete path, so we decided that in the game the player would sometimes be able to choose different paths to take in order to finish the game.
After the storyboard was done -- well, I shouldn't really say done, because everyday we are tweaking and fine-tuning it -- we got down to the real work. Animators began working on animations, artists began doing some concept art, musicians began composing musical scores, developers began modeling different scenarios and, of course, the programmers began to develop the infrastructure of the game itself.
Already after a few days of work, the artists began producing some amazing concept art. These people must be extremely talented if they can produce pictures of these unimaginable places and machinery, with mind-boggling architecture. Of course, the next step was to turn these sketches on scrap paper into three-dimensional, moving entities inside our modeling environments. This is where our modelers and animators began to shine. Needless to say, their work is not yet complete, but from what I have seen so far it looks extremely promising. As for the programmers, all their hard work won't be seen to the very end. As of right now, it is just a bunch of uncompiled code.
If you are wondering what you can expect to see different in the second part that didn't exist in the first part, well, there are lots of things. For starters, we are planning to slightly change the interface; it won't be a simple point-and-click interface anymore. You will actually be able to pick things up, and drag them over. Second, there are going to be many more characters to interact with. We are planning to include many more videos and animations. While the first part had relatively static videos (i.e. characters mostly talking to each other, not much movement), the second part is going to feature an array of much more dynamic videos and animations. There is also going to be a dynamic foreground and background. Plus some other stuff that I don't want to give away just yet.
So to sum everything up, I think that you, adventure game players, are going to be in for a treat. Stay tuned for further updates on the progress of the development of The Sacred Rings.