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Way back in 2014, Valve were approving games from Greenlight in batches. In one particular batch the game 'Northern Shadow' came up on my radar as a very promising looking RPG. Sadly though, it has officially ceased development.

The developer posted this on the Greenlight page:
QuoteFirst of all, a big thank you to everyone that supported the game. Seeing so many people interested in the game was an amazing experience. Thank you!

I’ve worked on the game as a solo developer until the start of 2016. At that point it became apparent that the game I was working had gradually ended up being a completely different game. I had hoped to maybe somehow preserve the original vision of Northern Shadow, but fortunately after a year of development that effort has failed. And it's time to call it.

Development of Northern Shadow ended on January 2016. Huge thanks to everyone that followed the development over the years.

Thanks for reading!

The announcement seems to be rather late, nearly a year late in fact. It's always sad to see developers fizzle-out and have their games cease development, but such is the way when you're working alone. Burn-out is a very real problem, as is feature-creep when you're working to your own single vision.

Thanks for letting me know Brian. Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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The comments on this article are closed.
slaapliedje 29 December 2016 at 9:32 pm UTC
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Why on earth was this a one man project? Granted back in the 8-bit days, most games were. But since the 16 bit days you at least would have a couple coders, the music and art guys.

The only one man projects I see being semi successful these days are retro or VR. And most of the VR ones use premade assets.
tmtvl 29 December 2016 at 10:43 pm UTC
Harrumph, could've at least GPL'ed it so the community could try and finish it.

Kinda reminds me of Good Robot, though, where Shamus got quite far into development before teaming up with Pyrodactyl, and ending up with something quite different from the original vision.
Armand Raynal 29 December 2016 at 11:37 pm UTC
tmtvlHarrumph, could've at least GPL'ed it so the community could try and finish it.

Kinda reminds me of Good Robot, though, where Shamus got quite far into development before teaming up with Pyrodactyl, and ending up with something quite different from the original vision.

I think he uses the unreal engine, so he cant GPL the whole code.

I don't how hard it would be to separate the lines of code that can be GPLed from the engine lines.
slaapliedje 30 December 2016 at 12:21 am UTC
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Was he necessarily actually doing much coding? i kind of thought with the Unreal engine you could potentially make an entire game without much code at all and just needed to feed it textures and such.

Granted I could be completely wrong about this, I only played with the new editor for a short time (looked really powerful though).
Armand Raynal 30 December 2016 at 1:01 am UTC
slaapliedjeWas he necessarily actually doing much coding? i kind of thought with the Unreal engine you could potentially make an entire game without much code at all and just needed to feed it textures and such.

Granted I could be completely wrong about this, I only played with the new editor for a short time (looked really powerful though).

To make a whole game like what nothern shadow looks like you need relatively quite a lot of code if i'm not mistaken, even with the unreal engine. Although UE provide a tool(blueprint IIRC) that makes programming more visual and easier, it's just sort of a graphic translator for code, so it's still code in the end.

Just providing the art with creative commons would have been cool though.


Last edited by Armand Raynal at 30 December 2016 at 1:02 am UTC
STiAT 30 December 2016 at 4:12 am UTC
Armand Raynal
slaapliedjeWas he necessarily actually doing much coding? i kind of thought with the Unreal engine you could potentially make an entire game without much code at all and just needed to feed it textures and such.

Granted I could be completely wrong about this, I only played with the new editor for a short time (looked really powerful though).

To make a whole game like what nothern shadow looks like you need relatively quite a lot of code if i'm not mistaken, even with the unreal engine. Although UE provide a tool(blueprint IIRC) that makes programming more visual and easier, it's just sort of a graphic translator for code, so it's still code in the end.

Just providing the art with creative commons would have been cool though.

Well, "coding". I call that part engine scripting. But ye, it's code, and especially for RPGs depending on the design it can be a lot of code. But it's rather easy code, and my guess is for games like this if you have an engine 80-90 % of your time goes into characters, models, maps, textures etc. rather than coding the real story-path (and designing the whole story).
Swiftpaw 30 December 2016 at 6:54 pm UTC
Not at all clear from the note what happened to the money that was given. Hopefully this isn't a case of theft where they took the money and ran.
STiAT 30 December 2016 at 9:41 pm UTC
Armand Raynal
tmtvlHarrumph, could've at least GPL'ed it so the community could try and finish it.

Kinda reminds me of Good Robot, though, where Shamus got quite far into development before teaming up with Pyrodactyl, and ending up with something quite different from the original vision.

I think he uses the unreal engine, so he cant GPL the whole code.

I don't how hard it would be to separate the lines of code that can be GPLed from the engine lines.

Actually, couldn't get GPLed if it uses UE4 classes, so basically reimplementing / deriving from every UE4 class is a derivate work.
The licensing of UE4 is not compatible with GPL or LGPL. Though, according to the UE4 devs, MIT, BSD, zlib are okay. And they are viable options for open sourcing the game.

The issue there with GPL is that you can't publish the code of the UE4 with the code of the game, since that would be the property of Epic Games. MIT etc. are not that restrictive.

Let's see, the last word is at one guy. The developer.


Last edited by STiAT at 30 December 2016 at 9:43 pm UTC
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