Winter Sale + 2021 Overview

Christmas is approaching fast this year, so as usual, we are hosting a Winter Sale during the next two weeks, where most of our packs and bundles are available at a 25% discount. This is the first time the Female Rider is available on sale, so if you wanted to create your very own riders for a while, now could be the time to do it!

As the year-end is also approaching, I’ll be taking some time to recap what has happened at Overhead Games this year, and a small glimpse on what’s coming in 2022.
Discord: It’s been exactly a year ago when we launched our official discord server! Right now we have a bit over 600 members on the server, and it is a great honor to have all who are around there! While the public rooms are mostly quiet, we have a lot of chatter in our team areas where we work on our new project, as well as having some convos in our early access channel. I believe once we can share more information on our upcoming title, the server will be much more alive! Until then, there are still fun games to be played for real rewards in the form of digital Steam keys.
ePic Character GeneratorThis was a relatively quiet year on this end. We released a new package, the Female Rider in March, and also shipped a patch with various fixes and improvements. We also launched the Season #3 Bundle, where all packages of that season can be purchased at a discount, similar to how it’s been for a while in the other Seasons.
In August, we started working on porting the software to Mac OS, and once we are done with that, we will also port it to iOS. Over the past years, I often got asked if we are planning on porting, but since the software is built using a framework that’s not trivial to port, we estimated the work to be much more than what we can account for at that time. When I was meeting a friend during summer he asked me if I wanted to port the software to Mac and iOS because if I do, he would be interested in doing it, and I thought this could be a great opportunity for both of us to work together again, and of course to finally deliver the long-awaited port of the software. Shout out to @arby who’s been working on these versions since! We’ve made good progress and also shared our first builds with a few users who signed up for early access. Huge thank you for your time, your feedback helps us a lot so we can deliver a polished experience to the public! Your efforts will be rewarded. 😉 If all goes well, we are planning on releasing the Mac version of ePic Character Generator in Q1, 2022, and then start working on the iOS port, which we hope to be able to deliver by summer.
GMTK Game Jam: In June, the Game Jam came around, and while I didn’t plan on joining this year, the theme inspired me to create a small game regardless. I had a single day to do it, so I reached out to a former colleague and a long-time friend of mine (with whom we are enjoying our time playing IdleRPG in the #adventure channel on discord – cheers @suszterpatt!) and asked if he wanted to chip in by creating the core gameplay code while I design levels, GUI and wrap it all up. He didn’t think long before joining, so that’s how Re-Joined was made. You can read more of it in my previous blog post here.
re joined screenshot

NFTs: This year was crazy in different ways, and one phenomenon a lot of us don’t understand is the insane booming of the NFT market. I got approached on multiple occasions asking if our characters can be used and sold as NFTs, and even though the general use-case is covered in our EULA, there is no specific clause for NFTs (yet). In short, you can use characters in any commercial project, but you need to make sure the characters are not the focus of such a project. So for instance, creating character images and then selling them as NFTs or stock assets isn’t allowed as per the EULA. On the other hand, if you create a game where the characters are the avatars, and you are selling the game as the product and the characters are only there to enhance the experience by visualization, then it’s completely fine, and is actually a use-case the software is designed for.

Speaking of NFTs, while I was at it, I also thought having a collection would be cool, so in September I created the ePic Characters collection on Ethereum and made it available on OpenSea. The collection is made of the original Trading Cards we created for Steam when we released the software there back in 2015. If you aren’t familiar with that system, games on Steam can give specific trading cards to that title after a specific amount of time spent in-game. Since our software is free, users were only able to get these cards by purchasing DLCs initially, however, Steam moved away from distributing trading cards for DLCs, and now the only way to get these are via in-app-purchases – a system we haven’t integrated. Once all cards have been collected, they can be used to craft badges, and subsequent crafting will increase the level of the badge. Today, the only way to acquire ePic Character Generator trading cards is by buying them on the community markets, but as there are no new drops, the number of cards on the market is constantly decreasing, and at one point they will probably be all gone! So I thought preserving these cards in a form of persistent digital collectibles could be a good idea. If you are into these, and also enjoy using the software, owning a unique, one and only copy of the 13 available cards can be tempting! Check out the collection here, and bid on the ones you like the most.

Our new project: Besides the above, most of the year was spent on us working on our new game, as we were experimenting with art styles, animations, and different game mechanics. We also spent a lot of time discussing the world, narrative, overarching story as well as the characters and the way we present dialogues. One area where I was looking to innovate is the presentation of dialogue trees and give more freedom to players to interact with NPCs and explore all the chats they offer, so a lot of time was spent on prototyping different ways to put my ideas into practice. We are at a very good place with the game right now, have the first few characters, locations, plots, and all fleshed out, so what we aim to do as a next step is create a vertical slice, where we can present a fully working, but smaller section of the game. Once we get to a certain point, we will also be looking for people who are into detective games to help us shape the game so it can become a very enjoyable experience by taking their feedback and suggestions, and we will be using our discord server for that, as constant communication will be key in this stage. We don’t have our roadmap set in stone, but we expect to reach this stage probably by the end of Q2, 2022.

I think that’s it for now! I’m really looking forward to seeing what the next year will bring us all. Until then, wishing you a very happy celebration of the upcoming holidays, if you happen to live in an area where they are celebrated!