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TSS Beta Testing - 03-19-2014

DROD: The Second Sky -- Beta Testing

Hello, everyone! We hope you enjoyed the 2014 Winter Olympics. Here in the northern hemisphere, winter is now coming to a close and spring is beginning. Caravel has been hard at work wrapping up "The Second Sky". We're now into beta testing, and the process has been going well so far. We’re so excited to be sharing the game with you soon! Our testers are doing a great job of rooting out (no pun intended) every little issue in the TSS hold, balancing difficulty in a few places, and we've found and fixed some important code bugs. On the whole, the build appears to be stable, and it's mostly functional issues we're addressing at this point.

Feedback from testers on the overall TSS experience has been quite positive so far. Lots of great feedback for the levels themselves, how we handled new and old characters, the beautiful new music composed by Emmett Plant and Jon Sonnenberg, and also for the great art created by Alex Kowalczyk. Also, we have a stellar cast of voice actors to reprise previous roles, including Sten Ryason who’s back to voice Beethro, along with Tony Porter, Steve Anderson, Daniel Pugh, Logan West, Michael Abbott, and more. Some testers have played through most areas twice now! I can tell they're dedicated testers, and they seem to be enjoying the journey as well.

Steam Greenlight

We're working on a Steam Greenlight page for TSS. About all of the content is up, and soon you'll be able to go and see it for yourself. We've started working on a new trailer video, and we'll wait until it's up in order to make the Greenlight page public. At that point, we're hoping for a lot of up-votes and positive comments for TSS from the get-go so that we'll have greater opportunity to share our creation with the Steam player community at large. More news on this in the next few weeks!

Edit: Here's the link to the DROD:TSS Greenlight page:
http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=93828972

TSS Pre-orders

We're opening up pre-orders for TSS! Pre-ordering (via BMT Micro) will let you register your license on the Caravel Forum, so you can download and enjoy the game as soon as it's publicly available. At that point, you can either download the game from BMT Micro or from the Downloads page on the Caravel Forum. There are some added perks to ordering we’re still working out the details for that we'll disclose in a few more weeks, in our next Illumination.

Game + music bundle

If you've played DROD RPG, then you're already familiar with Emmett Plant's beautiful and engaging music. He has composed ten new and improved thematic tracks for TSS. You can hear one of them already in the TSS teaser trailer, and others are themed to characters like First Archivist, thematic moments like the Grand Event, and more. These tracks aren't available as part of the three new room styles composed by Jon. As part of our arrangement, they won’t be featured for general use in the level editor. However, after considering feedback from many fans about making Emmett’s music available, we've worked out a nice option for a TSS game+music bundle. By ordering this bundle, you can download a lossless version of his TSS music collection for your listening pleasure.

Also, as part of this bundle, we worked out an agreement with Emmett that ordering the bundle grants you a license to use any of his tracks in your own holds. If you pre-order this option, you can start listening to his music right away. You can buy this option for $5 more than the basic game. If you decide to go with just the game, Emmett is placing his music collection up on the iTunes store, so you'll be able to order it separately from there in the future, though I'm expecting that the deal won't be as good as in this bundle.

Pre-order link for the TSS game+music bundle:
https://secure.bmtmicro.com/cart?CID=7477&PRODUCTID=74770032

Pre-order TSS only:
https://secure.bmtmicro.com/cart?CID=7477&PRODUCTID=74770028

We’re nearing the end of our journey, and soon yours will begin!

Happy DRODing,
Mike


Flash DROD 4 Released - 12-28-2013

Happy holidays from Caravel! We hope you've been enjoying this festive season so far, and we're looking forward with you to starting a great new year. It has been a few months since our last Illumination, but that doesn't mean we've been idly sitting on our hands. We have a lot of exciting news to share with you!

Flash DROD: KDD Lite Episode 4

As promised, Maurycy Zarzycki has produced and released the fourth installment of the Flash DROD series! This episode features levels 13-16 of King Dugan's Dungeon, with some all-new areas (including a new and improved maze remix level) and a fresh set of achievements. It's hot off the presses. We have a new page up on the Caravel Games site:

http://caravelgames.com/Articles/Games_2/FlashDROD/KDDL.html

Play it online now!

DROD: The Second Sky

There has been a constant stream of activity going into our next major title, the epic conclusion to Beethro Budkin's adventures in the Great Beneath. We are over 90% done. We plan to begin voice recording in January and hold beta testing starting in February. This game is going to be huge! It has over 700 rooms and will be, by far, the largest, most ambitious DROD game ever made. We expect it to be released in Spring 2014. More game features have been revealed since our last Illumination. If you'd like to read up on some new game features that will be in TSS, you can read about them on the Caravel Forum:
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=35434

If you'd like to participate in voice acting for the game, but haven't yet auditioned, then there's still some time left to get in on the action. You can go here to submit your sample recording:
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=36019

Everyone who ends up getting some recorded lines included in TSS will receive a free copy of the game when it is released and get their name in the credits.

Official Forum Contest: The Other 10%

As you might have guessed, we've already incorporated all the new game features we've been planning into TSS. So, for the final ten percent, here's a contest to celebrate all of those feature requests that didn't make the cut. Actually, you get to make up your very own!

Go here to read up on submitting the most entertaining -- yet awful -- game feature for TSS here:

http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=36164

You have just over a week to place your submissions. The winner is decided by community vote, and that individual will receive a free game or other prize of their choice from the Prize Pile. You can also get some free CaravelNet time for placing.

DROD RPG: 1.2.0.57 Beta

A new version of DROD RPG (full game installer) with many bug fixes is available to beta test. Everyone with a registered copy of the game may download the beta version here:
http://forum.caravelgames.com/downloads.php

New User-made Holds

There has been an excellent set of usermade holds, both for DROD and DROD RPG, published on the Caravel Forum in the past six months:

Frozen Cave
Beethro and the Cake
Growth
DROD History Month (contest compilation)
The Intelligence
A World in Miniature
The Morbid Marsh
Tower of Din
Due Payment

You can download all of these directly here:
http://forum.caravelgames.com/holds.php

Then go to the Holds board on the Forum and share your thoughts!
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewboard.php?BoardID=11

-----DROD RPG Holds-----
If you've been looking for some more DROD RPG holds to play, these are all excellent and newly-released:

The Forgotten Castle
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=36132

Break Out of Jail
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=31196

Trial Tower
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=36185

Heroine’s Quest: New Release by Crystal Shard

Crystal Shard has released an all-new adventure that we'd like to share with you:
Heroine's Quest: The Herald Of Ragnarok is a classic/retro adventure game with RPG elements, where you enter the rich world of Norse mythology as warrior, sorceress, or rogue to bring an end to eternal winter.

This page has a lot of information about the game, with a link to download the game for free:
http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=36181

-----

May you have a happy 2014, and happy DRODing!

-Mike


DROD RPG on IndieGameStand - 08-17-2013

We have two great items of news for you this weekend.

First, by popular demand, we have an unprecedented promotion on IndieGameStand from August 16-19. We're offering DROD RPG: Tendry's Tale for whatever price you want. DROD RPG is a spinoff from the classic DROD series. It's an RPG-lite game that's heavy on puzzle solving and resource management: gather health, attack and defense power-ups in a hand-crafted dungeon of thirteen interconnecting levels. Enjoy Tendry's bluster and quick wit, but keep him alive long enough to upgrade his weapons and armor in order to come off conqueror. Find unique power-ups to unlock special challenges and go for a high score after each boss fight.

By picking up a copy, you can support Child's Play charity and Caravel in our efforts to develop DROD: The Second Sky.
But wait, there's more! If you pay above the average price (currently about $2), you'll receive some crazy bonus content with something for every DROD fan:

* A free copy of DROD: Gunthro and the Epic Blunder
* The Deadly Rooms of Death OST
* And a never before released DROD RPG OST
* Plus twenty-five minutes of exclusive DROD tracks written by Emmett Plant. This music is excellent and highly thematic. We say "exclusive" because they've never before been released. Caravel will be releasing the DROD RPG soundtrack sometime in the future at a normal rate, but this is your chance to get it in advance, together with all the rest, at a great price.
If you're interested in DROD RPG, DROD:GatEB, or want a copy of the soundtracks, then the time to act is now!

As indie developers, we appreciate the support of DROD fans everywhere. Please note that IndieGameStand is also giving away a free IndieGameStand t-shirt to the top three contributors. Read more about it on the site, and tell all your friends!

https://indiegamestand.com

Second (can you believe all that was just the first news item?), a limited-edition CD version of DROD:Gunthro and the Epic Blunder is now available for purchase. You can buy it on the Caravel Games website. If you've already bought the game for digital download, then we can provide you a deeply discounted copy, just above cost. To get the discount, please e-mail us, including either your forum username that the game is registered to so we can verify your original order, or please provide your original order receipt, and we'll send you a code for the discounted copy. There's only about a hundred copies available, so get yours before they're gone!

http://caravelgames.com/buyGatEB.html

Okay, enough marketing. Now it's back to work on TSS.

Happy DRODing!


DROD Summer Dream Bundle - 07-01-2013

If you're signed up for the Caravel mailing list in hopes of receiving a sweet deal on DROD games, you're in luck!

Pay what you want bundle

For the next couple of days, you can buy all of the classic DROD games in the "Indie Gala - Summer Dream" bundle. Pay what you want to get DRM-free copies of "King Dugan's Dungeon" and "Journey to Rooted Hold"! If you pay above the average, you will get a Desura key for "DROD: The City Beneath" and "DROD: Gunthro and the Epic Blunder".

Caravel gets a relatively small percentage of gross sales, and I'm not expecting that to amount to much, but I'm also excited about this bundle for two other reasons:

1. We can get the word out about DROD. Free advertising!

2. Fans who have been holding out for a deal can now snag some serious DROD goodness. (The first one's always free, right?)

If you're at all interested in this bundle, you shouldn't delay, because it will be gone soon:


http://indiegala.com/summerdream


Official Caravel Forum Contest: Completely Intended Solutions

If you've ever architected a hold, you might know about those pesky "unintended solutions" that can creep into your puzzle designs. Players find a way to solve your room, either in a trivial way, or through some method completely different than you intended. Well, this contest is not about those, but rather about puzzles where you completely intend to enable the player to solve a room in multiple ways. You might set up puzzle elements that can be used in different ways to clear the room, or simply have different sets of elements that can be used separate from others to solve the room in different ways. There are other custom routes you could take too -- be creative! Contest submissions are now open through July 7. Submit the most enjoyable room and win a prize!

http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=35673

DROD: The Second Sky

"The Second Sky" is about two-thirds complete now, and we're quite excited about what's in store. We're wrapping up the creation of new content and now starting to tie everything together. Some fans have requested not being spoiled about what's going into the new game, and we'd like to be respectful of their personal wishes. Notwithstanding, we'll be working on showing off some more new content before too long for those who either don't want to wait or think it's a brilliant idea for Caravel to do some pre-release PR. We expect to be able to show off some more goodies by the end of summer, and some time after that, we'll be letting fans audition for some voice acting parts in the game. Stay tuned. Till then...

Happy DRODing, everyone!


"DROD: The Second Sky" reveal - 05-06-2013

View the teaser trailer for DROD: The Second Sky

Last month for April Fool's Day we held a multi-layered puzzle event. Those who participated in the event were able to be the first to uncover the all-new teaser trailer for DROD: The Second Sky. Congrats to Dischorran and Panther for being the first to find it! Now, you can easily view the trailer and some accompanying room images on the dedicated page we've put up for TSS on the Caravel Games site:

http://caravelgames.com/Articles/Games.html

The upcoming game is over halfway done, and the trailer shows off several all-new game elements that will be in TSS. Learn more about and discuss the upcoming game features shown off in the trailer video here:

http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=35434

DROD Tactics

On April Fool's Day, we also showed off an early preview of "DROD Tactics", an all-new turn-based strategy game set in the DROD world. The game is being developed by skell in Flash. For those who are into TBS, this will be a treat!

Results for the Ninth Annual People's Choice Awards (The "Deadlies")

The players have spoken! Each year, the Caravel community has a chance to nominate and vote for their favorite new content created within the player base at large. There were many high quality holds released last year. If you're looking for more DROD and want some recommendations on something new to try out, then you should definitely check out the winners. See who won awards for the best levelsets and contents from 2012 here:

http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=35490

For those who love statistics, you can see the voting breakdown here:

http://forum.caravelgames.com/viewtopic.php?TopicID=35441

Congratulations to all of the winners. Congrats, Dischorran, for being this year's recipient for the Erik Hermansen Award for Lifetime Architectural Achievement for a growing collection of highly rated holds, including Hinterlands, which was nominated for several awards this year! Dischorran receives a lifetime CaravelNet membership for his achievement.

Don't Ask Award

I'm giving RabidChild a "Don't Ask" Award for volunteering and running the Ninth Annual People's Choice Awards. Someone was needed to fill the spot of hosting this event this year. RabidChild stepped up and offered to run the event, and did an excellent job, all for which forumites were grateful. RabidChild, thank you. Please select a prize from the Prize Pile.

Till next month!

Mike