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View Full Version : Witch+Hunter Help Wanted, oh and we have concept art!



Tomothy_Mayhem
01-08-2010, 04:23 PM
Introduction:
Why Hello there, I'm Tom May from Mannequin Software and the Lead Designer and Project Manager on our new FPS/RPG or like I call it a AONDAG (Action Oriented Narrative-Driven Action Game). The time has come for us to seek new talent, so let's begin.

Team Name:
Mannequin Software "Witch-Hunter Covenant"

Project Name:
Witch-Hunter: Demon Within

Brief Description:
Basically Witch-Hunter is an action oriented RPG, playing from a first person perspective players explore Steam Punk London and the rest of a supernatural London, like murky swamps and dark castles.

With a large arsenal of fictional weapons players will fight off against such creatures as Vampires, Werewolves and Zombies some of which may have mechanical upgrades. The world history of Witch-Hunter is huge, we have developed a document similar to the "Halo Story Bible" and it includes world history covering everything from the 1400's AD to 1999.

I am the only person open to all that information, but some of it will be adapted and parts will be released to the writers for their.... writing. Anyway, that's enough for a "brief description".

Target Aim:
While Retail is a dream, we will be aiming for a Shareware release in a similar fashion to what id Software did with DOOM. But also to a more modern and advanced area. Steam might be an outlet which will prevent a lot of piracy which we are considering.

Compensation:
Since we aren't funded there is no set budget we cannot pay you upfront, but the amount of work you have eventually done by the end of the project, or by the end of your job, we will calculate a percentage of profits or a set amount of money you will receive.

Technology:
Programming:
-Leadwerks 2 Engine
-Microsoft Visual C++
-Bullet Physics

3D Art and 2D art largely depends on the artist's preference.

Talent Needed:
Alright then here's the list.

(A side note: Any member of the team can also work as a designer and add ideas and so forth. This is quite an open project)

3D Art:
(People to do with 3D Art will most likely receive a relatively large amount on the back-end)
-3D Artist (Character)
-3D Artist (Environment)
-Rigger/Animator

2D Art:
(Since we have a lead, don't expect to be payed, these are simply volunteering roles, unless you think you have quite a lot of talent and could vastly help the project. Oh, and Texture Artists are more likely to receive something)
-Character Artist
-Environment Artist
-Monster Artist
-Weapon Artist (Graph paper and diagrams are preferred)
-Level Layout Design (Graph Paper and Diagrams are, yet again, preferred)
-Storyboard Artists (May be a secondary job to one of the ones above)
-Texture Artists

Programming:
(People who own the LeadWerks 2 engine will be gladly accepted seeing as that is the engine we are using)
-Web Designer
-Coders
-Programmers

Writers:
(You will be working closer to the creative side of the team, mainly me)
-Background Writers (For converting world history into the form of encyclopedias or historical texts for in game)
-Dialogue Writers (Everything from Quests to random mumbling)

Later on we will need Level Designers but not right now.

Current Team Structure
Project Manager & Lead Designer:
Tom May

Lead Programmer
MasteR

Lead Artist
Eoghan Cowan

Artists
Adam Gregory

Community Manager
Jordan Fletcher-Blain

Composer/Writer
Dave Matney

Website
As of now we don't have a website as such, but we do have a forum. Its quite empty and is full of ridiculous posts. But that's the open area, if you join go into the Member Introductions and introduce yourself as someone who wants to help you will be granted access to the Game Development forums (which are even more empty, but hopefully will become more developed...ironic?)

www.witchhunter-forum.darkbb.com (http://www.witchhunter-forum.darkbb.com)

Contact
As of yet we haven't got a registered Domain Name so we don't have a company email yet, but it is a plan. So you can reach me at:

tjpmay@tpg.com.au

private messages are fine, but I may not realize I have them.


http://i975.photobucket.com/albums/ae231/Tomothy-Mayhem/Whitchhunterposterlores.jpg
http://i975.photobucket.com/albums/ae231/Tomothy-Mayhem/BigBenModelSheet2LOREScopy.jpg
http://i975.photobucket.com/albums/ae231/Tomothy-Mayhem/l_4693dcb9a72b419db522a300272310d7.jpg
http://i975.photobucket.com/albums/ae231/Tomothy-Mayhem/mechsmall.jpg

LOG
01-09-2010, 10:28 AM
Hnnnn, steam punk isn't really my thing.
I prefer things more at extreme ends, like Dragon Age or Mass Effect.
One of my exceptions is Eberron.

Darn you though, you raised my hopes that there was more news about The Witcher 2.

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-09-2010, 10:40 AM
I prefer things more at extreme ends, like Dragon Age or Mass Effect.


What do you mean by Extreme Ends?

LOG
01-09-2010, 11:19 AM
Like the end of a spectrum.
Dragon Age is very much so on the medieval fantasy end of the spectrum, while mass Effect is without a doubt, space opera sci-fi.
Steampunk lies in-between, in my view anyways.

Mr. Anonymous
01-10-2010, 04:01 AM
Nice concept art.

Two suggestions.

1. If you must create a new term, why not go with N-DAG (Narrative Driven Action Game.) Action Oriented Narrative Driven Action Game is kind of redundant.

2. Since you're posting on a writers forum, why not give us a better idea as to what you're thinking the story of the game will be?

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-10-2010, 04:44 AM
EDIT

LOG
01-10-2010, 06:15 AM
Sounds sort of like Bioshock with demons gone worldwide in Fallout 3 :P

I'm not against Steampunk, I just find it harder to get in tune with then Fantasy or Sci-Fi.

VelvetCyberpunk
01-11-2010, 10:15 AM
Actually BioShock is primarily dieselpunk with biopunk elements. Another dieselpunk game is TimeShift. Dieselpunk is about ten years old so not really a new genre, but newer than cyberpunk, splatterpunk, and steampunk.

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-11-2010, 01:34 PM
EDIT

LOG
01-12-2010, 04:48 AM
I'm interested.
I've always liked amassing and creating lore, and I tend to find dialogue easier than narration.
Two cons against me though are:
1) I've never done anything like this.
2) I've yet to finish my short stories, so I can't offer a complete example to satisfy your curiosity about my talent, or lack thereof.

VelvetCyberpunk
01-13-2010, 07:36 AM
I wouldn't count TimeShift as Dieselpunk to be honest, more Cyberpunk in my opinion. A good steampunk game is definately Iron Grip: Warlord.


Well, that's what dieselpunk is, cyberpunk through a retro-futuristic filter. Dieselpunk is an alternate reality cyberpunk set from 1920s-1950s-ish. TimeShift fits that description, and if I'm not mistaken the game's designers even said it was dieselpunk.

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-14-2010, 05:39 AM
Edit

VelvetCyberpunk
01-14-2010, 10:10 AM
Ah okay, well that explains it. Yeah TimeShift made a huge about face after they released the demo. From what I understand it was a kind of cyberpunk/steampunk hybrid. I actually like it quite a bit, but it's only a straight shooter, and really no depth. It's no Deus Ex, or System Shock 2, or even BioShock, but it is fun, and it's beautiful.

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-14-2010, 02:31 PM
EDIT

VelvetCyberpunk
01-15-2010, 06:59 AM
Anyway! I came in here to compliment the concept art, and to say that the game sounds like it's going to be amazing! A first person action rpg? Sign me up! My favorite game of all time is Deus Ex so this sound like a game for me, and I really like steampunk so yeah can't wait to play it.

Mac H.
01-15-2010, 08:09 AM
You'll need to set up (at the very least) an ABN to do business under. Because at the moment, 'Mannequin Software' doesn't exist in Australia.

If it isn't a formal company (eg - you are a sole trader) it is as simple as filling out a form at www.business.gov.au. It is totally free.

It is important because I expect that all the work you will be getting people to do is going to be owned by 'Mannequin Software' .. but who is that?

Without registering it as a trading name it isn't clear who owns the extensive IP that is being developed. Especially if someone else associated with the venture registers the name 'Mannequin Software' first - it gets really, really messy.

It is such a trivial first step for any venture like this - it should definitely be done.

Setting up a real company should also be considered ... it isn't a huge leap .. just a case of filing a fee and filling out some forms.

Good luck !

Mac

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-15-2010, 08:09 AM
EDIT

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-15-2010, 08:18 AM
EDIT

LOG
01-15-2010, 11:26 PM
Can't believe I forgot to ask this.
Would the position, if accepted, require moving?

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-16-2010, 04:47 AM
Can't believe I forgot to ask this.
Would the position, if accepted, require moving?

If you mean moving to Australia, no it doesn't. Most of us are from different countries, if I was picky about where you were I wouldn't be as far as I am already.

remember to email me at:

tjpmay@tpg.com.au

Thanks,
-Tom

DoomBunny
01-23-2010, 07:27 AM
Hi Tom,

Can you tell me what sort of industry experience or knowledge you have, seeing as you're both lead designer and project manager/producer? I've seen a lot of these kind of startups and I'm sorry to say most of them don't seem to go anywhere without solid industry experience.

Your initial post suggests to me you haven't actually got a license for the engine, and as such I'm very concerned about the level of commitment and professionalism of your project. I wish you all the best of course, but I'd hate to see young and impressionable talent disillusioned by a project that turned out to be all talk and no action.

Tomothy_Mayhem
01-24-2010, 02:18 PM
EDIT

DoomBunny
01-24-2010, 03:49 PM
As a response to your first paragraph. We have members of the team who have worked in the industry for more than half of my life, and now how to handle certain situations that have appeared. And by the way, how did the game industry boom? Bedroom programmers and designers, how did games conquer pop culture? 4 guys and an apartment (id Software). Just because the industry is booming doesn't mean you have to be in the industry to know. Sometimes, it takes a fresh mind to bring a different view on things.

By being rude and evasive you're suggesting to me you that don't have any industry experience. Given you're comparing yourself to John Carmack I can't help but suspect you don't even have industry knowledge. If you did you would understand just how much those four guys accomplished. You would understand your limitations and how to get around them. Fresh minds are all well and good but if you don't know the rules you can't break them.


we have got a license for the LeadWerks 2 engine, and I don't know why you would assume we don't. Also with your concerns of level of commitment and professionalism, what has been given to you to suggest we are not going about this in a mature and productive manner?

f you have a license why do you need level designers to work on graph paper and not the engine's own tools? Why do you want coders that own copies of the engine? These are perfectly reasonable questions that you should have no problem with answering.

I was concerned about your level of professionalism because of the nature of your posts. I haven't asked you for anything you should not have already provided. Professional designers have written communication skills that are beyond reproach. Professional producers have no problems with discussing details of their project relevant to potential employment (paid or otherwise). I'm questioning your professionalism because your attitude suggested (and is suggesting) a lack of it.

I wanted to know if this was a serious startup, a decent hobby team, or a bunch of hot air. I've had experience with all three and it really fucking sucks when a good team drops out from under you because the guy in charge doesn't know what he's doing.


If we were all talk, we wouldn't have this concept art to show, and wouldn't be working on a demo to (hopefully) show at the eGames Expo down in Melbourne at the end of this year.

Sure you would. You'd also be eager to show off your team's experience. You're telling me I should be impressed just on your say so, when I've seen this same situation time and time again. Concept art, like ideas and good intentions, isn't worth a damn thing, and you should already know that.


It is your kind of unfounded nitpicking that really gets my goat sometimes.

This is where I'm tempted to drop the professional courtesy. This is a creative industry. We need criticism. Deal with it. If you can't provide this kind of information to potential team members without throwing a tantrum, how do you expect to make a pitch to a publisher? I asked you reasonable questions and I did so with courtesy and respect. So far all you've shown me in return is ego, that I would dare question someone so clever as you.

I'd also like to point out that it's a very small industry. We hold courtesy in high regard because we know each other well, especially in Australia. If you are successful you're going to run into people much more unpleasant than me and your career may be dependant on their good will. This is one of the reasons I'm not in the industry any more, so believe me when I say this is important advice.

Mac H.
01-24-2010, 04:32 PM
Also with your concerns of level of commitment and professionalism, what has been given to you to suggest we are not going about this in a mature and productive manner?I suspect that DoomBunny has the same concerns I have - we've all seen 'the next big thing' promised before, and we've all had good friends burned when they've failed.

Big opportunities fail all the time. That's OK. That's part of getting in on the ground floor of a new venture. It's part of the excitement of it. It would be a tragedy if new ventures never started anymore because everyone was too afraid of the risks.

But people in the venture need to understand what the risks are - and what the benefits are. So far, you don't have a company structure yet, which means that it is impossible to tell how much people are going to 'own' of the IP that is being developed. I know you are talking about 'paying positions' in March - but I suspect that you'll discover you can get better use of your capital with at least some level of sweat equity. (That's part of the joy of being a small startup)

The description of the 'Lead Designer' in a software company that doesn't exist yet (but is only a month and a half away from employing people) is going to make people think that the professionalism is lacking.

Being a project manager on something like this is a LOT trickier than it looks. It's hard to explain why until you've done it a few times.

When you apply for seed funding, you'll find out you need a lot better answers if you expect them to invest. (Seed funding is tricky - the VC firms tend to avoid true seed startups. Another thing to keep in mind is that their aim is always to recoup their money from an IPO rather than from trade - which is a concept quite alien to the rest of us!)

Who are you meeting to get funding ? (I've had a few contacts in the V.C industry over the years - I might be able to give you some pointers)

Good luck,

Mac
(PS: I like the concept art, though. Hope things work out for you!)
(PPS: For a **GREAT** review of the what you can expect from startups, read Steve Blank's blog. He has run startups (and failed at it) many, many, many times in Silicon Valley. Including a games company.

See http://steveblank.com/ for details. I suspect you might find the experience at the games company more interesting, so try this: http://steveblank.com/category/rocket-science-games/ (Due to the fun nature of blog ordering, the first entry of interest is at the bottom of the page - not the top)

DoomBunny
01-25-2010, 04:21 AM
and we've all had good friends burned when they've failed.


This is exactly it, thank you Mac.

I've been in exactly this position - designer and manager on a startup project, which was very well received but ultimately unsuccessful. As they almost always are. Most inexperienced people with big ideas don't seem to realise that the guy in charge has the least invested in the project of anyone on the team, and has the least to lose if it fails.

That aside, I've done some surfing around this morning and I can't find your post on either Tsumea (Australia's best industry community site) or Polycount (same, worldwide). I don't dislike your idea, and some of your concept art is very nice. But I think if you're looking for help and haven't looked on these sites you're missing a lot of information. You have a responsibility to your team to educate yourself. This is an observation based on experience, not a criticism.

gambit924
01-25-2010, 07:29 AM
You know, I've known a couple of guys like you. Best intensions but they sadly crashed and burned. It's so hard these days to break into the biz. It's almost as hard as getting into acting, which I also tried. You have to do more, concept art is nice, but do you have any actual playable demo available? Do you have any of the game actually created?

Mac H.
01-25-2010, 08:34 AM
You know, I've known a couple of guys like you. Best intensions but they sadly crashed and burned.The thing most people miss, though, is that it is OK to crash and burn. It isn't a tragedy.

So what if they have a less than 10% chance of succeeding? It is still worthwhile trying. If they all spend a good solid year on the project and it doesn't go anywhere - so what ? They've still learned a hell of a lot more than their peers who sat on their butts learning the theory of games development. Speaking from the point of view of someone who manages software developers - I'd much rather see a resume with a year as part of a failed (but dynamic!) startup than see a year of twiddling their thumbs in a boring job.

Yes - they are all giving up solid paying work for a high risk opportunity. That's OK - as long as people understand the very real risks and the very possible benefits.

I just want to make sure that everything is done to give ventures like this the best chance possible of succeeding.

Good luck !

Mac

gambit924
01-26-2010, 06:31 AM
I suppose you're right. It's a good idea you're working on. I would love to see it go somewhere like I want to see it from all the lovely startups. I'm not saying they will fail, I'm saying they should put more into it...Least ways, that's what I think I'm saying...

DoomBunny
01-26-2010, 03:11 PM
The thing most people miss, though, is that it is OK to crash and burn. It isn't a tragedy.

Absolutely. You can learn a lot from trying and failing. I think it's important to have realistic expectations though. It's better to start small and make genuine progress than to over-reach and spend all your time reinventing the wheel.


as long as people understand the very real risks and the very possible benefits.

The only benefit is experience, and that's so easy to get (or at least share) that it's insane to try for a startup when exactly the same result could be achieved as a mod team. You won't make any money but you won't spend any either.

Having said that my concern is not that they're going to try and fail. What worries me is that they're being unintentionally misled by an ambitious and passionate team leader who has no idea what he's doing. Hopefully I'm wrong, but all indications seem to suggest otherwise.

I'm also a little irked by the constant flood of people claiming to be game designers who demean and disrespect the work of real professionals with their disregard for experience. I didn't learn to paint by scoffing at the old masters. But that's just a pet peeve. :D

Unless Tom wants to continue the discussion I'd rather not hijack his thread any further. I'd love to take it up in another thread if anyone's interested.

Mac H.
02-03-2010, 05:50 AM
BTW - I know you are in Geelong, but in Sydney there's a seminar next week on 'Raising Capital for SMEs'.


A highly qualified panel combining experience from SMEs which have made the transition as well as capital providers and other experts, will participate with the audience in a moderated discussion.
It is organised by the NSW.net group .. I'm guessing there would be an equivalent one for Victoria, probably with similar seminars.

This kind of venture will require a lot of learning in plenty of business oriented subjects like this as well - so good luck !

If you happen to be in Sydney on the 11th Feb, feel free to drop in on the NSW.net event. Google it for details.

Hope things work out.

Mac

Tomothy_Mayhem
02-05-2010, 11:53 AM
BTW - I know you are in Geelong, but in Sydney there's a seminar next week on 'Raising Capital for SMEs'.

It is organised by the NSW.net group .. I'm guessing there would be an equivalent one for Victoria, probably with similar seminars.

This kind of venture will require a lot of learning in plenty of business oriented subjects like this as well - so good luck !

If you happen to be in Sydney on the 11th Feb, feel free to drop in on the NSW.net event. Google it for details.

Hope things work out.

Mac

Thanks,

I won't be, but still

Tomothy_Mayhem
07-05-2014, 08:14 AM
EDIT