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LF VXF Arist, Environment Artists, and Narrative Designers for stylized souls-like game

Hello,
Griever Games is currently seeking to fill positions within our team to work on our game: Forlorn Outcast!

ABOUT FORLORN OUTCAST

Forlorn Outcast is a souls-like game where balancing powerful magic and combo-filled melee combat is a constant struggle. When Tilsa is invaded by demons that feast on magic and the magically gifted, hell breaks loose. Casting spells may alleviate your suffering temporarily, but be warned; excessive magic empowers your foes and is a one-way ticket to an early grave.

Limitless Magic

Often magic is restricted by point systems or available casts; in the world of Tilsa, magic is unlimited and unmatched. Carelessly expelling magic attracts magic feasting demons and gives rise to magic resistant demons. The only magic limitation is your own ability to live with the consequences.

Dynamic Difficulty Balancing

Based on your ability, magic use, and manner of progression, scenarios and enemy behaviors will change in real-time. Enemies will be better prepared, gather in larger numbers, lay traps, and send Stalkers to hunt you down, wherever you may hide.

Enemy Variety and Synergy

Only fools rush into combat against demons capable of enhancing one another. Demonic buffs and curses allow demons to grant one another strength, manipulate your senses, and die twice. Encounters with hordes of demons require tactics and skill. No two encounters are the same.

Attributes as Currency

Every stat point sacrificed and awarded determines your struggle to survive. Trade maximum constitution for a reduction in the demons’ power, hunt down the demon who slaughtered you to regain the attributes sacrificed on death, or pay for victory over a relentless boss with hard earned attribute points; sacrifice only what you can afford, martyr.

Who We Are

We are Griever Games, a new Indie game studio made up of 11 talented and passionate developers, with a variety of skill sets. Our ambition is to bring detailed and interesting worlds to life, while creating challenging experiences for players. Our current project, Forlorn Outcast, is in early development and we’re hoping you may join us.

Our current team composition:

  • 3 programmers
  • 3 3D Environment Artists
  • 1 Character Artist
  • 1 Animator
  • 1 Marketer and Level Designer
  • 1 Sound Designer
  • 1 Fill

CURRENT PROGRESS

We know that finding a dedicated team can be difficult. So we would like to show our current logged hours since we began recording them in late September of 2019. (It doesn’t include pre-production in July and August)

https://youtu.be/Ofz1Mar2Bos

https://youtu.be/D7EIw1X6Idk

https://youtu.be/xzHBx5JFKjc

Level 1 Current Progress Showcase:

The art team has been hard at work producing the farmland village, a small place in the world of Tilsa. There is still work to be done, and feedback to be applied, but this provides a good sense of the base quality we are hoping to achieve and continue to build off from moving forward.

What we are looking for:

Before jumping into the specifics of each role, we would like to cover some general points about the positions we have open:
What we ask for:

  1. Competency in your given area: This is fairly self-explanatory, in that we expect people looking to join to have a decent level of knowledge in their specific area. For example, for 3D Environment Artists, you need to know the full pipeline (blockout, high poly, low poly, unwrapping, baking, texturing etc.) You should have all the foundational knowledge required for you to be able to come into the team and confidently dive into things. Not everyone knows everything, there’s simply too much information out there, so we’re not expecting experts, but do ensure you know enough to do the job.
  2. A solid level of commitment: We understand and appreciate that not everyone has 10s of hours per week to put into the project, every single week. However, this is a commercial and ambitious project; that requires time. This also isn’t a short term project. The planned release date is late Q1 of 2022. So similar to the previous point, ask yourself if you are definitely looking for a project of this scale, and you are in a position where it’s possible to commit a minimum of 8 hours per week.
  3. Be friendly (and even better, be excited!): Games are difficult and long processes, so getting along as a team is an important aspect. Simply put, we want people coming into the team to be decent people who enjoy collaborating and working with others. It’s difficult to force someone to be excited about a project, but it would be great if the project looks and sounds exciting to you, and it’s something you are genuinely looking forward to working on. If you’re excited, we’re excited, and that helps bolster the enjoyment for everyone.

What do we offer?

  1. A collaborative and live production environment, great for learning and developing as game developers: There’s so much to know and learn within any given area of game development, and we hope that Forlorn Outcast is a great opportunity for people to come into the team, and build upon their existing skills. By working as a team we learn from one another and help each other out. Feedback is a big part of refining all the various aspects of the project, and so it is a consistent theme throughout, creating plenty of opportunities to learn and improve.
  2. Putting your name to the game: As previously mentioned, Forlorn Outcast is a commercial product with a twenty thousand dollar budget and a dedicated team working on it. By joining the team and working alongside one another, you not only get to impact development and put your mark on the game, but you also have a commercial title under your belt. Expanding on this point, it’s also a great way to bolster your portfolio**.** As you develop in your specific area, and continue to learn and improve, we hope people will produce work and find opportunities to make contributions towards their portfolios.
  3. Rev Share: This isn’t anything massively unique, but we do offer revenue share as part of the contracts. Simply put, if the game makes money, you make money. By you joining the team, we hope your skills and contributions will improve the chances of the game being a success. On the topic of money, Forlorn Outcast does have a budget, so if you don’t already (Great if you do!) we can sort you out with the software and licenses required.

The Positions/Roles We Are Looking For:
VFX ARTIST

We are looking for someone with experience using the Niagara system within Unreal Engine 4 to create a variety of visual effects within our game. The effects will range from environmental additions such as mist and fog, all the way to magical spells and interactions. Due to the variety of visual effects which may be required, a good understanding and competency using Niagara is most ideal.
Our art style sits in a grey area between realism and stylised (It is shifted more towards stylised, but still within the ‘grey area’). This art style also needs to be matched through the visual effects. We don’t have many visual effects already developed within the correct style, so whilst we can provide art style documents and discuss anything which needs to be, finding the right look for the effects will be a process of iteration, and working back and forth with yourself and the team. This may go without saying, but I felt it was worth mentioning nonetheless.

Summary:

  • Experience and competency using Niagara within Unreal Engine 4
  • Experience creating VFX for games
  • Experience and competency using the Unreal Engine material system to create moderate - complex materials
  • The ability to work within an art style
  • Able to work collaboratively within a team environment
  • Able to contribute a minimum of 8 hours per week towards the project

If you’re interested in joining the team as a VFX artist, please get in contact via the contact given at the end of this post.

3D ENVIRONMENT ARTISTS (x2)

We are looking for 2 new 3D Environment Artists to join our art team working on Forlorn Outcast. As part of this role you will be creating a variety of assets to bring the world to life. These may vary from terrain materials, to small props, to buildings, even weapons. We currently have 3 3D Environment Artists and are looking to bring this up to 5. The world within Forlorn Outcast is big! So there is a lot of work involved, but it’s also an exciting project for environment artists, due to the variety of environments, the expansive fantasy world and the large amount of storytelling within the environments.

This was touched on previously, but I will reiterate that any Environment Artists looking to join are competent at the full 3D pipeline; you can take an asset from an idea/reference all the way to being in the engine, ready to use. There are also some software experience requirements. You ideally need experience using:

  • Blender (if you personally own a commercial license for any other preferred 3D modelling package, you’re welcome to use that. If not, Blender is a requirement due to licensing)
  • Zbrush (ZbrushCore is included in this)
  • Substance Painter (Substance Designer isn’t absolutely necessary, but it is ideal and preferred!)
  • Unreal Engine 4 (Import meshes and textures correctly and apply the appropriate materials. Any further experience is great!)

The above software’s are the main ones we use within our pipeline and so experience with these is required.

Our art style is a cross between realism and stylised, with a lean more towards stylised. We have documents and guidelines to introduce you to the art style, but any previous experience working within a predominantly stylised art style of sorts, would be a great benefit! It isn’t always absolutely necessary, but it does show that you are only a few steps away from getting our art style down.

The process for applying to join Griever Games:

  • Drop a message or email to the contact(s) shown at the end of this post, explaining that you’re interested, what your role is, a portfolio, and a way of getting in contact (Discord username works best, if possible).
  • The portfolio and method of contact will then be passed on and looked at.
  • If you tick a lot of the boxes, many of which have been outlined in this post, then you may get a message.
  • This message is an introduction to the art style and it also explains that you will need to complete a test asset.

A little bit about the test asset:

This will likely be explained in the message as well, but the purpose of the test asset is to primarily give you the opportunity to learn the art style and get experience with it. The test asset will involve you sharing your progress at each stage of the workflow, receiving feedback, and together we can hopefully continually iterate on the test asset, and get you working comfortably and confidently within the art style.
I will also add that receiving the test asset task does not confirm that you will be able to join the team. There are a number of things which contribute towards whether you get into the team:

  • How quickly and comfortably you pick up the art style. We understand people pick things up at different speeds, but if someone picks it up great within a week, and someone else takes 2+ weeks, I’m afraid we won’t wait around waiting for everyone to finish and compare. The goal of releasing the game takes priority.
  • On a similar topic**, production speed does also play a factor**. As mentioned, the asset is an opportunity for us to work together for you to get to grips with the art style, so we want people to take their time in the process. However, there is a line to this. Working on a large ambitious project where others may often be relying on you for something; completing an asset a month (obviously dependent on the asset), but for a standard prop would not allow us to release the game until 2030.
  • Availability will play a big part. If we receive 15 messages of people interested and all of them are working on test assets, there will be an element of first come first served. If possible, other factors will be prioritised above this, such as the overall Quality of the asset, but we can’t wait on everyone interested for months.

I just wanted to share an insight into the process, so people know what to expect, and can apply in a fairly well-informed state.

NARRATIVE DESIGNER

The final role we are looking for is a Narrative Designer. Forlorn Outcast is a single player game with a narrative experience throughout. We are developing a large dark fantasy world, and there are so many creative narrative opportunities to explore throughout the game, from the main story, to the smaller (but equally awesome) environmental stories we tell to enrich the world.

There is a lot of work to be done in this role, and the narrative is an important element to us, hence why we are looking to bring on narrative talent into the team.

Something we do want to emphasise is that we are looking for narrative design for all elements of the game. This includes:

  • The main story the player will actually experience within the game
  • Backstory and Lore to inform developers of the world they are bringing to life, and also enrich the experience for players interested in knowing more.
  • Creating all the various diary entries, book pages and notes which can be discovered and read within the world.
  • All the character narration from our main protagonist. The protagonist will interact with various locations, items, abilities, enemies etc. A lot of this will require voice lines.

We want to keep the requirements for this position fairly open, however we are aware that narrative is a broad area and writing for games can be a different experience. So for that reason, some form of experience with narrative for games is preferred and ideal; Not absolutely necessary though.

If you’re interested in joining the team as a Narrative Designer, please get in contact via the contact given at the end of this post.

We hope you enjoyed what we showcased in this post, and if you are at all interested in becoming a part of Griever Games, please feel free to get in contact via:

The Project Lead’s Discord ID - zstrife#1278

OR

contactus@griever.net

Both methods of contact work fine.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read this!

Griever Games