May 252017
 

Hey everyone! Mercury here just letting you know that we were super excited to have seen everyone who attended our recent panel at EFNW 2017!

For anyone who missed it, our panel was on the 13th of May. The wonderful crew at EFNW have provided us with a video of the panel so that no one gets left out from the excitement!
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Jan 192017
 

Good morning everypony!

Novel Idea here with something you have all been waiting for. I know I have. Now, I could tease and play with the information and drive you all crazy, but instead, I’ll just tell you what’s going on.

For those of you who attended Pacific PonyCon, you already got most of this information. For everypony else… it’s time for the good stuff.

We’ve got three major announcements today.

  1. Gardens of Equestria is moving to an episodic content schedule. Instead of releasing the entire game at once, we’ll be releasing the game chapter-by-chapter, starting with “Gardens of Equestria – Prologue: The Watcher.”
  2. We are currently aiming to release “Prologue: The Watcher” at the beginning of February 2017.
  3. Today, you get to see the Opening Cinematic of Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm. This is the actual cinematic you’ll be seeing in-game when you play the Prologue.

So, let’s talk about what this all means, shall we?

Episodic Content!

Why episodic content? Well, the truth is, the scope of Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm is massive. An original worldspace, over ninety levels, four unique voiced characters, dozens of new weapons and armor and so very much more. In addition, we’re a purely volunteer project. That means wives, husbands, kids, full-time jobs, college and a thousand other things.

What that means is that because of real life, we likely wouldn’t release anything for at least two years if we went for a full production model (and that’s on the extremely optimistic side. In truth, it would probably be longer).

I don’t want to wait that long and I know you don’t either. Going episodic means you’ll actually get the content in a better timeframe. Yes, there will be delays and you won’t be able to play the whole thing in one go (unless you wait until the very end), but the important thing is you’ll be able to see what we have coming!

What this means tech-wise is that you’ll just be replacing the GoE files with the new ones!

Upcoming Prologue Release!

That’s right folks! While our guests at Pacific PonyCon 2017 got to see a live playthrough of the “The Watcher,” soon you’ll be able to adventure there yourself! Get a mysterious message from DJ-PON3 and investigate the strange events in the cliffs north of Goodsprings.

Not only that, but you’ll get the first phase of the reality distortions! New billboards, new artwork, new music, a new radio station and so much more. Now, the thing to remember is that reality itself is changing! Things will get progressively worse until you put a stop to the chaos! So there’s even more to come!

While we were originally going to launch at the end of the month, we need just a bit more time to put the finishing touches on it. After all, I run this group with a mission of “Do it right and do it with style!”

Watch for the release of Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm – Prologue: The Watcher in February of 2017!

The Opening Cinematic!

After dealing with a surprising new enemy in a mysterious cave, you’ll encounter a strange Spritebot. After a brief conversation, he’ll head outside to give you a rundown as to just what has been transpiring to cause these strange shifts in reality…

This cinematic will play in-game once you reach the correct moment of the Prologue, like the opening of Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas or Fallout: New Vegas’s DLCs!

In the coming months, we’ll have more information as to the release schedule of Chapter 1: Strangers in a Strange Land and Chapter 2: Small Advantages.

Manehattan Live!

First of all, a special thanks to the staff of Pacific PonyCon for having us and hosting the very first GoE panel. It was an amazing experience for all involved. Sadly, we had a miscommunication on the Manehattan side of the team and weren’t able to record video of the panel. In addition, the audio we recorded didn’t turn out very well (though our audio team did an awesome job salvaging most of it!).

That’s okay, because in the next few months, we’ll be releasing interviews with the entire Board of Directors of The Manehattan Project!

But wait, there’s more!

We’re currently looking into doing panels for more conventions! That’s right, so if you missed us at Pacific PonyCon, you might get a chance to see us in person at another major MLP convention! Once we have confirmed venues, we’ll release more information, but we’re currently aiming for at least two more conventions with a possible third!

Interested in Doing Art or Modeling for Manehattan?

Finally, we’re doing an open call for any artists or 3D modelers who might be interested in joining our staff. We’ve got a lot of art assets slated for this game and we’re looking for new talent to help us bring Gardens of Equestria to life. If you’re interested in helping us out in art, modeling, scripting or think you can contribute to the project in another way, head over to our recruitment center and send in an application!

Remember, if you’re interested in a career in game design or a similar field, this is the perfect sort of project to have on your resume!

And that’s it for this week folks. We’ll have more for you in the coming weeks, but today I’m going to leave you with a look of the brand-new Sunset Sarsaparilla Billboard you’ll be seeing in This Coming Storm. This was designed by yours truly on Tuesday night!

…and if you’re surprised it’s Sunset Shimmer, you definitely aren’t paying enough attention. 😉

Until next time, have fun!

-NI

Jan 052017
 

Pacific PonyCon 2017

Good evening everypony!

Tomorrow's the big day. Tomorrow, The Manehattan Project will do a live world premiere of the Prologue on Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm at Pacific PonyCon 2017 at 7:15 PM in the Guest Panel Room (Harborside Room).

We've been working around the clock (literally, since Little Tinker is in Australia, which is like +18 hours ahead of us) to get this ready for you. And we've done it. We've got one hell of a demonstration set up.

Because you're not just going to see another video folks. You're going to see me, Novel Idea, play the game live in front of the entire panel. What you'll be seeing in this panel is the actual game. You'll get to experience the quest design, the custom voiceovers, the new music, some of the weapons you've already enjoyed in Smuggler's Run, the branching dialogue choices and live combat with pieces of a reality that don't belong on earth! And trust me, they're hard to beat (I've actually allotted time for if I die during the fight. Ayep. Kept it that hard). But not only that...

You'll be seeing our opening cinematic. Built from the ground up for this game, this cinematic will finally reveal the grand adventure the players are about to embark on.

We've also had a few changes in our line-up for tomorrow. Sadly, Silver Chord won't be able to join us tomorrow (everything's fine, just real life got in the way). However, you'll still have Polyphonic, former Vocal Director and Voice Actress for Velvet Remedy, Candi and more, Ebon Quill, Quest Designer and our new Vocal Director, and of course, myself, Novel Idea, the Project Lead.

We'll be talking to you about how this all began, how voice acting really works in the gaming industry and an in-depth look at the story-building required for something as massive as GoE.

Finally, we have one enormous announcement that's exclusive to all attendees of our panel tomorrow. Yes, everyone else will find out next week. You won't want to miss this. This is one thing you probably didn't see coming.

GoE 3.0

You've probably noticed that things look quite a bit different around here! We've got a whole new setup, now featuring some of the coolest parts of GoE right here in once place. So, take a look around! We've got features on the bottom, a new logo up top (I'm still fiddling with that bit) and all sorts of other goodies.

In addition, I've also done a massive redux of many of the website pages throughout the site. There's still a bit of optimization to do, but I think you'll find exploring things much easier. Just a tip... check out the locations page!

Novel's Nook

For those who enjoy my stories, I'll also be attending all three days of the convention, so feel free to say hi and stop by the panel to see what this is all about! 

In the last couple of months, I've released several new stories. You can find them all at Novel's Nook, but here are some direct links for you at the bottom as well.

We'll see you next time!

-NI

 

Tactics of Snowbound Unicorns

Twilight’s got her nose stuck in a book. Sunset wants to go see the rest of their friends. As winter descends upon Canterlot, Sunset gets an idea. Things snowball from there.

The Alchemy of Chemistry

After a tutoring session gone wrong causes Moon Dancer to storm out on her, Sunset is forced into a decision she never wanted to make. Now with her future on the line, if her legacy doesn't get her expelled, the upcoming alchemy exam just might...

The Cloudsdale Report

After an entertaining evening meeting Sunset’s newest friend Twilight Sparkle, Princess Celestia seeks an old intelligence report that may hold a devastating secret from Equestria’s past that will forever change Equestria’s future.