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Bishop On The Road: PAX East 2017 Recap

A few days after PAX East, the dust is finally settling down. Last weekend, the city of Boston was invaded by thousands of avid gamers from all around the world. It was our second year at East, and this time around, we were prepared for the ”Horde” of fanatics. Here’s a recap of our 5 days in Boston!

Problem at the Border

Boston is only a 6-hours drive from Quebec City. As we had done in the past, we decided to travel by car once again. For this edition of PAX, only two of us were attending. This allowed us enough free space to bring the entire booth equipment in the car. We had the two 48-inches TVs, our laptops, the Light Fall banners, an extra table for the press, etc. David and I left on Wednesday morning, at around 8:00 AM. The weather was nice and everything pointed to a safe travel to Boston. But sometimes… things don’t go as planned. This was one of these times.

We arrived at the border at 11:30 AM, the ride had been smooth thus far. The border agents asked us the typical questions: ”Where are you going? For what purpose?”. Then, they saw the two TVs on the back seat. They thought we were bringing them to resell them across the border and asked if we had our paperwork in order for these commercial goods. They called it a TBI. We had no clue what a TBI was, and as you can guess, that clearly didn’t help our case. The agents asked us to go inside to talk with their superior. After several minutes of us explaining why we had brand-new TVs, it became obvious they wouldn’t let us cross the border without this TBI-thing.

They gave us phone numbers of US customs brokers. The only one who could set up a TBI quickly required a 900$ entry-fee. Yes, you read that right. 900$ to bring two TVs that were probably worth less than that. We obviously declined. But then, what were our other options? We could either leave the TVs in the snow or go back to Canada. Luckily for us, David had the idea to check for the closest storage unit. We found one within 30-minutes of the border. We went back to the agents, told them we were going back home and went back to Canada. We dropped our TVs there for the week and drove back to the border… We would rent the TVs at the convention, we had no other choice.

Desperate times call for desperate measures... Welcome to the Bishop Storage Unit!

Desperate times call for desperate measures… Welcome to the Bishop Storage Unit!

In hindsight, we can’t be mad at the border agents. They were simply doing their jobs. However, we had wasted 3 hours on this whole thing and, worst of all, it made our arrival in Boston right into traffic hours. The 6-hours drive became a painful 11-hours one… Quite the way to start our PAX East adventure!

New Build… New Bugs

After a long and tiresome day, a good night of sleep was much welcomed. On Thursday, it was time to set up our booth and test everything before PAX debuted. This time around, we had a demo version with our brand-new sounds and in-game physic system for the character. We were excited about the new changes, but also worried about potential bugs that might have escaped our internal testing. I won’t lie… we did have a few bugs in there. I counted 29 different ones, to be exact.

Nevertheless, nothing game-breaking happened throughout the weekend and the game ran smoothly in general. Better to find these bugs now than two weeks prior to release! Now that we’re back at the studio, we can easily fix them.

Despite some issues here and there, PAX East 2017 was a blast. We had a lot of fun meeting everyone and the comments on Light Fall were very positive! We can’t wait to go back for another edition of PAX East and we want to thank everyone who showed up at our booth during the event.

PAX East 2017 was once again a very pleasant experience for us.

PAX East 2017 was once again a very pleasant experience for us.

Update on Light Fall

With all that said, we know it’s been roughly two months since our last update on the game. Rest assured that everything is going according to plan. It’s just that we were working on so many things at once that we had nothing truly groundbreaking to show in these two months. We have an update coming up next week where we will showcase the new audio of Light Fall, as well as some environment changes we’ve made to make the game feel more immersive and reactive to the player. Stay tuned!
-BEN

Our Medium Approach

Hey guys, it’s been some time since our last update on the blog.

Fear not! It’s not that we’ve stopped posting online, far from it. Recently, we’ve been trying a new approach for our social media posts. Two months ago, we have created a Medium account under the studio’s name and have started posting there regularly on different topics about our activities and the game.

medium

Why Medium?

First of all, Medium will not replace this blog. Our blog has been running since day 1 and we intend to keep it that way. Then, you may ask, why post on Medium? Well, Medium is mostly about education, learning and sharing. As game devs, we have been asked often times by fans, family and friends to describe our everyday life. Questions like ”How did you come up with this idea for Light Fall?” or ”How do you manage to pay for your expenses while starting a studio?” have been asked many, many times.

As such, Medium is the perfect platform to share this kind of stuff with others. Our blog, and our Kickstarter page for that matter, will remain focused on Light Fall and the important decisions we take at the studio. Medium, on the other hand, will touch on many different subjects related to video games at large. So if game development has always interested you, feel free to go there to discuss and interact with us.

You can read the topics we’ve talked about right below:
TwitchCon: I Thought I Knew Twitch, But I Didn’t
The Importance of Colors in Game Design
Build a Coherent Game Universe
Our Game Studio’s Road to Success
Story vs Gameplay: How We Did It
5 Life-Savers For Your First Expo

Medium: Reaching A New Crowd

Using Medium not only is fun, but it also allows us to reach a new crowd of people. We share our stories and our knowledge with the public, and in doing so, some of them develop an interest in the game and decide to follow us. It’s a win-win situation for us and so far we have enjoyed it a lot! We’ve already seen the positive impact of Medium on the growth of our social media’s followers.

So far, we have been very pleased about this new approach:

Our humble beginnings on Medium so far. It has been fun to share our stories with the public.

Our humble beginnings on Medium. It has been fun to share our stories with the public.

 

The Medium posts have helped grow our brand on other platforms as well.

The Medium posts have helped grow our followers base on other platforms as well.

Light Fall Update

As for Light Fall, we’re currently finalizing the last steps of our beta. Right now, we are working on the bosses of the game! We are all very excited about that and we’ll do everything in our power so they live up to your expectations! While we can’t reveal too much right now, we still have a little something for you today. Right below, the Lair of Animus… an underwater cavern hidden beneath the Lost Lagoon! This is where you will encounter the first boss of the game… Enjoy!

What has happened to Animus the Wise?

What has happened to Animus the Wise? Find out soon…

Bishop Games: Introducing Ben Corriveau

Hey everyone, today we have a new guy in town to introduce! Please welcome Ben Corriveau, the newest employee at the studio. You read that right, we now have 2 Bens on board… our success is now guaranteed.

On a serious note, Ben joins the team as a full-time employee and as the second programmer of the studio. He will help us realize our vision of Light Fall and make it a great game. We are very excited about having Ben on the team, we share a common vision and philosophy when it comes to making games.

In his brand new and shiny Light Fall shirt, Ben Corriveau will help us in making Light Fall an amazing game.

In his brand new and shiny Light Fall shirt, Ben Corriveau will help us in making Light Fall an amazing game.

 

Here’s a short interview in which Ben introduces himself to you all. Have a good read!

  • What were you up to before joining Bishop Games?

I was living in Drummondville with my family. I completed an accounting degree and worked in this field for two years. Then, I realized I wanted to do something else in life. I completed a short course in programming, something I already did as a part-time hobby. This led me to work at Frima Studio in Quebec for one year, then I joined the guys.

 

  • What was the process of joining Bishop Games, an indie studio, like? Did you know the guys?

I already knew David beforehand, as he was my teacher at Bart College, the place where I took my course. I also briefly worked on Light Fall before joining Frima, a year ago. So I had already met the guys. As for officially joining the team, David offered me the job around a beer and I quickly accepted!

 

  • How does it feel to join a project like Light Fall?

It feels awesome! I had already backed the game’s Kickstarter last year and now I’m working on it full-time… Quite the funny situation. The guys also seem really laid back and fun to work with so far. It’s really different working on your own IP (intellectual property) than doing servicing contracts for other clients. We have much more freedom and we just try our best to make a fun and exciting game instead of doing exactly what the client demands.

 

  • What are your favorite video games?

All-time: Bad Company 2, Guild Wars (1), Halo 2-4. Recently: Destiny, Salt and Sanctuary, Ori and the Blind Forest. I mostly enjoy FPS and platformers, with some RPGs from time to time.

 

  • What is your favorite meal?

I can’t choose between poutine and pad thai!!!

 

  • Lastly, the most important question, how cool is it to have two Bens in a team of four?

Obviously awesome! Although, it’s sometimes confusing when someone simply says ‘Ben’. We have to work something out I guess, but it’s a small price to pay for all the awesomeness it brings!