Full Disclosure: I am friends with game director Falco Girgis and a few other staff members working on Elysian Shadows.
It’s been a little while since we’ve posted about Kickstarter-funded, throwback RPG Elysian Shadows, however a recent update on the game’s Kickstarter page delves a bit into a few setbacks the development team has experienced.
The update mostly focuses on a key member of their team, Tyler Rogers, who simply wasn’t performing to task or doing his share of work. Things essentially got worse, leading to Rogers quitting, taking development hardware the team needs, and ultimately setting development back a bit.
There’s a bit more about the entire thing from an interview with Elysian Shadows boss Falco Girgis (via TheGamingGround.net).
“There were many points during development when I took him aside and told him that I was so swamped with ESTk and getting the graphics engine perfected for Patrick that I would not have time to lead gameplay,” said Girgis. “I literally told him that if he was not leading that front, we would fail. Every time he told me that he understood. Every time I was left disappointed.”
From what it sounds like, aside from his work on building server infrastructure, Rogers wasn’t handling his share of the work, despite taking a regular paycheck from the Kickstarter money. This made things worse considering other team members weren’t being paid regularly.
“There were a lot of fights about whether setting up servers was a full-time job or not and for the first time, Patrick and I started looking back at commit histories to see what Tyler had been up to,” said Girgis. “…which (and I can prove) was sometimes absolutely nothing for weeks at a time. We came to realize that he hadn’t done anywhere near what the rest of us were doing for the past year.”
To monitor how much time Rogers and the rest of the team actually spent on the game, enforcement of actual “work time” began. This seemed to be the last straw, because afterwards Rogers quit and took lots of hardware/unfinished work, without prior notice:
“The one day Patrick and I wake up to his mommy and daddy at our little devtrailer moving all of his stuff out,” said Girgis. “We weren’t given a single second heads up. Nobody had any idea that he would actually quit. We weren’t even allowed to commit the code or art we were working on. He took servers, routers, networking equipment, monitors, desks, and even Patrick’s bed.”
Despite the setbacks, the game is progressing on both a visual and a technical standpoint. It’s worth checking out the most recent episode of Adventures in Game Development, as well as their Kickstarter blog for examples of new animations and such.
Finally, it’s worth mentioning that the team is teasing “something really, really, really exciting” for the project, however we’ve been told that soon enough we’ll learn just what this new development is.
Whenever Elysian Shadows is finished, it will release for PC, Mac, Linux, Ouya, mobile devices, and the Sega Dreamcast.