Category Archives: corona borealis

Mid-Year Point of Situation


Planet Stronghold 2 character creation: pick custom skills

We’re mid-way through this 2018 and I wanted to make the point of situation. As you’re well aware if you already follow me, this year I managed to release two games already: Cursed Lands and Love Bites.

So, what’s next ? Let’s see!

Planet Stronghold 2

This is the game I’m working on mainly right now. It’s another RPG, and I’m just at the beginning (you can see a screenshot of the character creation) so don’t expect this to be out this year (but should definitely be out next).

I’m having fun so far, even if I’ll need to rewrite a good amount of code to follow the new rules (different shot types for example). The game story is currently at 50,000 words, with a general plot outline and a few character scenes done, but I’m still tweaking it.

While this game won’t be another 300,000 words game like Cursed Lands, it won’t be a small one either (I don’t know yet but probably still around 200,000 words).

So as you can see there’s still a lot of work left to do, both coding and story-wise!

Corona Borealis

This will become my first really TRUE small game in a while 🙂 However I’ve asked the writer to add a few more texts to develop the characters personalities more and get to know them better.

I don’t know yet how long will take to finish this but I think it could be out before end of year.

Volleyball Heaven

In this case the romance CGs are taking longer than expected, but as you can see from the close-up preview above (yes that’s zoomed in, despite the quality, the image is much bigger) the final result will be worth the wait 😉 also in light of recent events, we’re going to have the game playable both in censored/uncensored mode. Before we didn’t think to provide a censored / tame mode, but in the end it’s probably better to do this so will reach a broader audience.

To do this we need to do some minor adjustments both to the CGs (provide a “covered version”) and texts.

The game scripting should also start very shortly and I’ll be posting some screenshot previews as usual on the social media when I start testing it myself!

Corona Borealis: Noah

Noah originally started as a secodary character but then evolved into a proper otome romance 🙂 I’m sure that Jill looked at him and thought “aww the classic shy guy with glasses, should be a romance option”. Yes, I’m 100% sure that this is what happened! This is also the last character introduction for this game.

Noah’s introduction

Lacey’s introverted and awkward twin brother. Unlike his sister, he is rather pessimistic and reserved. Sometimes it seems like there’s something amiss between the two, but it’s difficult to know for sure. He spends most of his free time inside writing and sketching in his notebook.

Very good news guys!

People following me on social media already know it, but just in case you missed it: Love Bites beta has started! More info in my forums: https://www.winterwolves.net/viewforum.php?f=47

As always the beta version might still have bugs, however in this case since it’s a dating sim, all the game content is ready. You can play and reach all the endings, unlock all achievements, etc! 🙂

Cursed Lands should also be officially released shortly, the theme song was made but I also wanted to do the video trailer and the person who usually does them couldn’t work, so I had to find a replacement and this added a bit of delay.

And regarding the next title I hope to finish this year, Volleyball Heaven, the romance CGs are being made right now (the lineart is basically ready but they need to be colored) and the game writer is doing a final review/polish of the story. Starting next month the scripting will begin, and as usual I’ll post screenshots during the development on twitter/tumblr so if you’re interested remember to follow me there.

Of course I’ll still keep working on Planet Stronghold 2 as well but honestly I expect to be able to release at best an alpha demo this year.

This week was my birthday, and I realized once again how lucky I am to be able to do what I do for a living. Thank to you all for your support!

Corona Borealis: Logan

Logan is the “main otome romance”. There’s also Noah (who we’ll see next) but he was sort of added in a second moment. Here’s the writer’s introduction:

The barista and dishwasher at the café. He is a hardworking and dependable employee that sets high standards for himself and places those same expectations on others. His interest in engineering proves to be a useful skill, as it gives him an uncanny ability to fix anything that breaks in the café. He plans on moving at the end of the summer to attend an out-of-state university.

Releasing games on Steam and mobile

Since Cursed Lands is in a very advanced beta status, some people started to ask when it will be on Steam and/or mobile. In this particular case, the game got finished MUCH faster than I thought (I originally set the estimated release date for Fall 2018!!) so I really didn’t expect to be in this situation now. I also had planned a theme song, but of course early this year I told the musician “ah, no hurry, the game won’t be in beta for sure before Summer”… last famous words! (even if in positive this time).

So, in this case I need to wait anyway for the theme song, and for possible last minute minor bugfixing, but in general I am always going to release my games direct for a small period, before making them available on Steam/mobile.

I wanted to explain a bit my philosophy behind this: first of all, selling direct (in this case with itch.io) gets me more money each sale. Steam/mobile take 30-35% of gross price, while directly the cut is more around 10% so, for example, every $1000 in sales that’s $900 instead of $650. For small indies like me that’s a big difference already!

But taking that aspect aside (some indies suggest releasing on Steam only helps with the algorithm etc etc so that’s honestly not my main reason) I prefer to do the playtesting/debugging directly. For mobile, for obvious reasons (updating games on mobile is a big pain!), and for Steam, I really don’t want to use Early Access. I think it make sense for bigger games with YEARS of expected development, but not for my smaller games 🙂

In summary always remember that the games on Steam/mobile are usually available 2-3 months AFTER the game is officially released on my site. Sometimes can be faster depending how the whole process goes (adding achievements, Steam page setup, mobile port, and so on).

Corona Borealis: Lacey

This is my favorite character of the game… no particular reason 😉 Haha, once again Deji skills impressed me, I really like both the look and the outfits (because seriously, they’re just incredibly cute!)

In case you forgot, this game is more “tame” compared to my most recent titles, to be clear you can expect a yuri route similar to the “secret” one of C14 Dating, more on the cute/friendship/romantic side.

And now here’s Lacey character’s introduction directly from the writer:

The overly friendly cashier and dining room attendant. Incredibly optimistic, it seems nothing can put a damper on her good mood. She immediately takes an interest in June and goes out of her way to make her feel welcome. She loves to talk about her fiancé, Mason.

Update on other games

Good news: the Cursed Lands beta testing is proceeding very well, so much that I decided to put the game in “soft release mode”. It means that it’s feature complete, all the content of the final game it’s there, and I feel it’s reasonably stable! While there might be some bugs left, they’re very well hidden (this usually is when I get max 1-2 bug reports a week, instead of 10/day! lol).

Regarding Love Bites, the story is 99% done, the writer just finished both Nadia paths, so once the scripter sends the files to me, I’ll proceed with testing myself the final romance route of this game and then begin the public beta. I think should be towards end of month or early next month! 🙂

Corona Borealis: Basil

The first character I’ll introduce is not a classic “love interest”, but there are other kind of love beside the one of a couple, right? in this case the love for/of a father. Here’s the introduction!

Basil intro

June’s doting father and the owner and head chef of the café. Passionate and driven, he can sometimes get a little too lost in his work. His and June’s relationship is shaky at best, but he hopes to change that over the course of the summer. He has an unhealthy love for coffee and the classic TV show “Star Journey”.

Other games progress!

Some very good news: the script of Cursed Lands it’s finished! The final wordcount is of 305,331 words! The biggest game I’ve ever done so far. I have uploaded a new beta with all the content (the full story, romances, quests). More info in my forums here: https://www.winterwolves.net/viewtopic.php?f=45&t=4109

I’ve also been in touch with Love Bites’ writer who has almost finished Nadia’s romance, so once it’s scripted, I can release the full beta demo of that game as well. Lol, a classic: two games, both in beta at same time! Though Love Bites will probably be out sooner since Cursed Lands being a RPG will need a longer testing period.