Official Thimbleweed Park Forums

How the game is standing now?


#1

We are close to 18 months from release, just wondering how the game is standing financially and if there are any money left for the team to create a new project…?

(We also haven’t seen any tool for translations still)


#2

They are still counting all the money!


#3

@gffp, Photoshop, please… :smiley:


#4


David Fox and Annie (Larris) Fox in Italy in September!
#5

I remember @RonGilbert said somewhere here that adding other translations would take too much time and work, while adding new voices for existing translations would be easier (that’s probably why the fun dub projects are on the way, while no one worked on a fan translation yet, even if it was an argument on the TWP dev blog).


#6

The problem with a text translation tool is that unless you install a new set of fonts (not easy) it would be restricted to latin charsets. The other issue is that the verbs are done with art, not text. Early in the project I was hoping to go it all with text, but when the other languages appear (French, German, etc) it was impossible to fit the words with text. Bear in mind, nothing is impossible, just impossible given ourtime frame and resources. I really wanted to do all the text with TTF fonts, but no renderer I found played nice with pixels, they all wanted to antialias. In the end, I just hand did all the fonts.


#7

How did you implement the Russian language?
I thought you chose/designed a font capable to print any UTF-8 character (including Cyrillic ones).


#8

But you could release a tool for translating the (other) texts (focusing on languages with a latin charset). If there is demand and someone is translating the texts in his language then you could still address the verbs (and the other problems).

Beside that you could leave the English verbs and show their translation at the cursor if the player hovers over a verb. (But I don’t know how much additional work that would be in your engine - and if that isn’t too confusing for the player.)


#9

There are other graphical parts in the game that are translated in a language other than english, like the Ricki Lee shop, the writing on the wall in the sewers, the signs at the meeting or at the factory, …


#10

Yes, I know. But they are not that important (compared to the verbs). In other games such graphics remain in English. And here you could show the translation at the cursor too.


#11

A font? This seems to be the problem:

The game contains 32 fonts total although not all of them are used in-game.
15 of those contain Russian characters, we can assume they are used.

Adding additional characters would be a lot of work since you have so many different fonts for all kind of stuff (UI [different sizes], will, computer, library book cover, library book content [note: library books aren’t translated so we could skip those], the list goes on).


#12

Gary Gearloose


#13

Depends on the fonts. Does the game only use bitmap fonts or are TTF fonts used?

If the fonts are just bitmap versions of an existing TTF with UTF-8 support then it’s (relatively) easy to generate a new bitmap font with the needed characters. Another possibility is to exchange the fonts used in the game with other fonts that have the needed characters.


#14

I wonder how do you know that, but I trust you so I won’t ask! :blush:


#15

He is Ron Gilbert spelled backwards. :wink:

(And he extracted the game data…)


#16

Which is also kind of backwards compared to what Ron did :slight_smile:.


#17

Who knows … :wink:


#18

Problem is it’s not. I would use used TTF fonts it it was just creating bitmap versions, but most of the font where hand made by an artist to preserve the pixelness of them. TTF rendering makes pixel font look muddy unless rendered at the exact size they were created for. I spent way to much time on this problem and in the end, just hand made the important fonts so they looked good.


#19

That’s interesting, I hadn’t assumed that. The only TTF “pixel font” I used was the C64 one and that scaled and rendered very well at different sizes. But that font is explicitly made to look crisp and “blocky”.

Regarding a translation bitmap fonts are “better” than TTF fonts, because the translators are able to modify the existing fonts with Photoshop, Paint or other standard graphics programs. Maybe the results won’t look “perfect”, but it isn’t a big problem that would prevent a translation.


#20

That wasn’t my experience with the C64 font. If you rendered it at anything but (I think it was 16pt) all the edges became antialiased and no longer crisp. You’d want this in a non-pixel font, but with a pixel font you don’t. I tried two different TTF renders and they both had this issue, it’s possible there are ones out there that can deal with it. In Photoshop, you can turn off antialiasing when rendering fonts and they look pretty good (but not prefect), but I never found this option in the rendering libraries.

Given more time, I’m sure this was solvable, but my main focus was shipping a game and it’s easy to get distracted.