Hey there, friends! Welcome back on board of “San Francisco”, a huge spacecraft travelling far, far way from planet Earth.
One of the most important questions we have to discuss is: why episodes? Well, there are perfectly good reasons for that!
Probably the main reason is the time of development. We all know the situation when the development of an indie (or a mainstream!) project goes on and on for a few years. The devs keep making promises to their fanbase and the project release is constantly delayed and keeps on slipping for an indefinite period…
Well then, it’s different with us!
We have a perfect overview of the time of development for our project. Our slowest ship (game art) requires 4-5 months to prepare the required amount of art for an episode. In that case we better show the completed product now, rather than dragging the development for another few years. And if the game proves exciting for the audience, we will find a way to speed the development process.
The second reason would be finances… Game development costs money, that’s a fact. The artist must get his salary. We started using our own money, and now we have the support of our publisher. But until we are not sure about how well the game will be received by the audience, continuing the development for several years is very risky. If the gamers like our project and the game sells well, we will feel much more confident and will be able to work on the game faster.
As for the episode content, I am guided by the classical quests with chapter structure – for example, Monkey Island. The game is divided into several chapters, where each part is an independent logical fragment with its own goals. After completing the first chapter players face a new situation with new locations and objectives. And towards the game finale players open the entire gaming world and travel across all locations.
This is how all episodes of Odysseus are structured. Each episode is a separate chapter of the tale, and all of them are united by the storyline. Each episode includes about 4-6 hours of game play (and the price of each episode is fairly democratic). So having considered all pros and contras we’ve chosen this format.