Shape of the World Newsletter #1 Nov 2014
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Newsletter #1: Nov 2014

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As this is our first newsletter, we want to introduce ourselves and bring you up to speed on all that is happening. Shape of the World is growing limbs, people are discovering it, we have staff, and we're starting work on a Kickstarter. Whew!


The last few months have been busy as we have taken the game from concept art to a living, breathing three-dimensional world. Initial game development began in the Unity engine, but we quickly switched over to Unreal as we found the engine was better suited to our dynamic style of environment and asset interaction. Under the dashboard Stu has been busing working on a procedural system to spawn and grow our world in the unique style that our game has been recognized for. Our goal is to make this immersive world as big and permutable as possible so that the experience is always changing and surprising.


In August, we were thrilled to be featured on Rock, Paper Shotgun in a nice article by Graham Smith. Graham and Alice O’Connor write about a number of genres, including “walking simulators” which might sound like the most banal description of a game ever, but it’s gaining enough momentum that Steam has no difficulty rounding up 61 games in the genre. We have heroes who build Proteus and Hohokum, and it’s amazing to see so many taking notice of a new genre in which murdering enemies is just not a thing you do. If you’re like us, embarking on vivid adventures while unfolding a stunning new environment is satisfaction unto itself. Although amazing audio and fantastic art don’t hurt either. And cute animals.


We’re expanding! We have been busy growing our team that are going to make Shape of the World a reality. Stu has been leading the development while Brent and Athomas have started work on the audio and creatures respectively. Check out their work and bios here. Emerging as an integral part of the team is Heather Maxwell (an architect by day) who has been helping with marketing, design and administration. Behind the scenes, we have reached out to a few other our our talented peers to help us with specific tasks like porting the game to the iPad. More about that in the future.

Stu Maxwell:

FX Artist at Black Tusk Studios by day, lead developer by night.

Brent Silk:

Freelance composer and sound designer working on a variety of projects in Vancouver and abroad.

Athomas Goldberg:

Computer graphics industry veteran who really likes making things move.

Heather Maxwell:

Architect by day, wearer of many hats by night. She is marketing, design, admin and Stu’s favorite other half.



We are gearing up to launch a kickstarter campaign in the next coming months and would love your support. We will send out another announcement as we get closer to launch date, but in the meantime, you can help by connecting with us via twitter or facebook and spread the word. Which Kickstarters work for you? What kind of rewards would you like to see? Send us your feedback.


We’re listening! We asked on twitter what you’re interested in. Keep the questions coming and we will get back to you in our next edition.

@XxMAFIAx895xX: How big is the “world” or game?

Stu: I haven’t settled on a fixed size yet, but I have done tests in a Proteus-sized area and much larger. Mainly, I’ve been authoring a procedural set-dressing system that makes it easy to expand my world quickly.


@FreakOramaXD: How did you come to make the art style of the game? Specifically it’s look and generation (rising from the ground)?

Stu: When I started the game, I was actively checking out the Motion Graphic Artists channel on Vimeo. I love the animations that showcase strong art direction alongside stunning VFX trickery. I realized that there were very few slick, stylish videogames in the world. Yet, it could be possible for one artist to create a lot of work if the pressure of realistic texture detail and lighting were traded for sharp, graphical beauty.


@FreakOramaXD: What about the music?

Brent: Shape of the World will feature an ambient soundtrack that is powerful and emotional, bringing about a sense of wonder that gently guides you to journey and explore in an ever-changing landscape. Expect an immersive soundtrack that ebbs and flows with the world growing and dying around you.

Thanks for your support!

As a thank you to our early newsletter subscribers we’ve released 3 new wallpapers. We can’t wait to see where this path leads. Thanks for joining us on the journey!

Download your wallpapers now!



Stu and the Shape of the World Team

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