Client

Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD)

Location

Savannah, GA

Year

2022

Share

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

A Master Witchhunter, Wald, and his young apprentice, Thilo, are on a hunt. As the sun sets, they're forced to stay the night in an isolated mining village, Willowtown. When dawn breaks, Wald is nowhere to be found. Thilo must investigate the peculiar town, search for clues, and unearth what crawls beneath. Use your wits, skills, and weapons as a witchhunter to find Wald. Unravel the mystery of Willowtown and face the horrors that lurk below... and beyond.

DARK SKIES of WILLOWTOWN is an upcoming title from CAT BEAR GAMES. Combining elements of  mystery, adventure, and challenging combat, DSOW aims to bridge the gap between combat focused Souls-likes, and narrative focused RPGs, resulting in an experience that is suspenseful, satisfying, and emotionally connected.

 

This was my senior capstone project at SCAD.  Leading a team of 12  students, I spent approximately 6 months from pre to post production working tirelessly to create this project. While it wasn't necessary in order to pass the class, we opted to make a full length game with the ultimate goal of publishing on Steam. I am incredibly proud of my team, the project, and the fact that we will be realizing that goal this coming fall.

DARK SKIES OF WILLOWTOWN

Video Edited by Lillie Tuttle and Tanner Wells, Sound by Jason Scalfano and HyunWoo Kim

On Dark Skies of Willowtown, I was the Project Lead / Product Owner. After coming up with the initial concept for the game, it was my job to keep the vision intact through 6 months of work and 12 other designers opinions and insight. I had never tackled a project like this, but quickly learned how to operate in the sink-or-swim nature of developing a large project. By the end of initial development, I had a hand in the creation of almost every aspect of the game, and largely learned the strengths and weaknesses in myself and my team and how to utilize them best to produce the best thing we could in the time we had without sacrificing the overarching vision. This process started with as much concept art as I could muster.

I pumped out concept art and narrative elements at the beginning but continued consistently through production, as we didn't have time to waste. We used an agile workflow (SCRUM) to accomplish this project in an organized way that would lower the chance of crunch time and help us produce viable, testable iterations of our game as we went. Part of this was finishing smaller slices of the overall workload weekly. In my case, I was concepting, modelling or sculpting and texturing assets for specific areas, creatures every week. All this, while writing the majority of dialogue and quest structure, creating sound and music and compiling the Art Bible. It was the most intense work schedule I've ever experienced, but also the most fun and most rewarding.

The game quickly took shape, and promptly presented us with plenty of lovely bugs and challenges. Refining passes came and went, I took on the design and illustration of the game's UI, which I really enjoyed, and our lead programmer / designer set out squashing the bugs. 

Here is a quick run through of the first 2 quests, the full game doubles this content.

I had an absolute blast composing the music for this project, it was a wonderful challenge to create something in this strange combination of time, place, and genre.

Dark Skies of Willowtown - TitleJason Scalfano
00:00 / 04:48
The Mirror ForestJason Scalfano
00:00 / 04:36
Bridgekeeper BattleJason Scalfano
00:00 / 05:36
VerushkaJason Scalfano
00:00 / 03:22
The TownJason Scalfano
00:00 / 03:24
Gloam BattleJason Scalfano
00:00 / 04:29
The MinesJason Scalfano
00:00 / 07:36
CreditsJason Scalfano
00:00 / 02:29

Music and audio by Jason Scalfano.