We've been able to get a keyboard and a MIDI controller I can use without much pain as well as a pastry cutter I've been able to make biscuits with thanks to y'all ^__^ Since early September I've been dealing with some sort of lower back issue that's kept me in bed most of the time; we just ordered an office chair in the hopes that will help me stay at my workstation since I've just been sitting on floor pillows. That also wouldn't've been possible without y'all's help ^__^ Provided the chair helps, I'll be able to use the controller to make music again as well, which is lovely!! We're still working on the exercise bike and some sort of arcade-type controller I could use for playtesting etc. since I can't manage a regular controller anymore. Y'all's support has been really touching, thanks so much!! ^____^ <3 It's been really nice to hear from people about the games too—I'm super glad everyone seems to be enjoying them.
I finally had a video appointment with a rheumatologist, who (in conjunction with a dermatologist) confirmed the psoriatic arthritis diagnosis and wants to prescribe me methotrexate. She wants to do blood work and X-rays first, and I haven't been able to get to a lab yet because we haven't figured out a way for me to travel with my back issues. Hopefully they'll improve soon or we'll find a solution and then I'll be able to start treatment. Bit by bit!
Hi folks! I'm Zoë, also known on Twitter as @spinnylights. My partner Lily and I have been working side-by-side for years developing games together. Sadly, I've recently developed an autoimmune disorder that has made it extremely hard for me to use a computer keyboard, game controller, or MIDI controller. This has stopped my development work in its tracks by and large, because I take care of both the music and the heavy duty programming. I also work 50/50 with Lily on the writing and game design, which is hard to do without being able to type much. To raise funds so we can get some equipment that might help me, Lily and I have decided to make our in-progress games available to the general public for the first time, on a pay-what-you-wish basis.
I'm still waiting to see a rheumatologist for a definitive diagnosis, but my GP thinks it's probably psoriatic arthritis (saw the rheumatologist, diagnosis confirmed). It's causing pain and stiffness in my joints, especially my hands and feet. It's also affecting my nails and tendons, causing pain and sensitivity in my fingertips and wrists and making it hard to press buttons.
The two main things we hope to get are
a keyboard that I might be able to use less painfully (done ^__^ ty) and a recumbent exercise bike so I have a way to stay in shape; as a long shot it would great if we could get a MIDI controller with light enough action that I could actually still play it. There are also a few little things, like a mic stand for the sake of computer voice control and a pastry cutter so I can get back to making biscuits and pie crusts. Of course, we'll also need to pay for bus fares, co-pays, and medication in the course of my treatment. This is all new to me so there will probably be other costs we can't predict now. We already live month-to-month on extremely thin margins so we don't have enough extra income to cover these sorts of things as-is.
These three games are all works in progress, but they each have enough done on them to be played for hours or days. Each one is also in a different genre, so there should be something to suit a wide variety of tastes.
EPISODE 0 - SONG OF HOMUNCULUS: This started out as a casual side project of Lily's back in 2016, but over time it became a larger and much more ambitious project as we both began to work on it. It's an RPG with a top-down perspective, party members and inventory, turn-based combat in a sense, etc. The emphasis is largely on the narrative and aesthetic aspects of RPGs although you might be surprised at some of its more mechanical features. It's mostly done at this point and much of our recent efforts have gone towards finishing it. There's a lot to do in this game, maybe even days worth of gameplay, with lots of small "quests" and some big ones too. We've had an extremely entertaining time writing the scripts for it and hopefully you'll find them similarly entertaining to play through.
EPISODE 3 - CRYPT UNDERWORLD: The sequel to Lily's 2013 game Crypt Worlds. Right now the environments are mostly done and a smattering of the games mechanics are there—you can piss, bop things around, grow plants, etc. Some of the characters have dialogue, others don't yet. We have big stories planned out for some of the characters, but they have yet to be implemented at the moment. This is mostly an exploration game right now but there is a lot of terrain to explore and Lily has done breathtaking work on the graphics.
EPISODE 5 - THE LAST CAR: A 3D physicsy game where you play as the last car on Earth in the distant future. Being a car, you can certainly drive around on the ground, but you can also move in a lot of other ways. This game has a lot of emphasis on pure aesthetic enjoyment in all the ways a 3D game can provide. There are many ways to change the car's behavior, different environments with a variety of geometry, characters, and sound, physics-enabled objects you can knock around, bounce off of, carry with you, etc. This game is maybe 75% done. We have an ending planned out but it's not in yet, and I have plans to redo the music system to provide more emergent behavior and interaction with the other parts of the game. We also have a few more items we'd like to add and other such things. In the current state though I think the game is a great pleasure to play already—both Lily and I often start it up just to play with it for a while because it feels very good. It's easy to make very entertaining videos with and we suspect it might be great fun to speedrun once the ending is done.
As a quick disclaimer, these are all works-in-progress, and are provided to you "as is" and without warranty of any kind, express, implied or otherwise, including without limitation any warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. I worked hard (and painfully -_-) yesterday fixing the worst bug I know of in any of these games, but will probably still be some glitches, crashes, inescapable states, etc. If you find things like this feel free to tell me if you want (my Twitter is a good place).