Things I have Learned
From My First Game

Progress Report - Part 1


This is a progress report for Shalnor Legends 2, please click here for more reports on this project.
The game is set for release on PC and Consoles in 2021.
Currently the game is in its prototype stage and everything you see here is subject to change.



You always make many misstakes in your first creation. you learn from your misstakes, but you never learn enough and you repeat some of the misstakes in your second game.

Fortunate for me, this is not my second game, before focusing on Shalnor Legends 2, I spent some time working on Vosaria: Lair of the forgotten which gameplay wise was completely different, it gave me time to reflect and as a result I had time to think about the changes I would make in the sequel for Shalnor Legends.

In this Article I will pinpoint the things I will be doing differently in Shalnor Legends 2, compared to Shalnor Legends: Sacred Lands.


How different is the sequel in terms of Gameplay?

Many criticized that the first game was interesting in the beginning but then became dull and repetitive halfway through. Some players gave me a pass saying "Oh it's just a one man, dev!" but that should never be an excuse.

In Shalnor Legends 2, my goal is to ensure that mechanically the game never becomes boring and to achieve that, I have been writing down any cool game idea that I have seen in other games and asked myself how if it’s possible for me to implement this in a way that does not interfere with my own core mechanics.

My goal is to ensure that each stage has something new in it, it's hard to think up of new mechanics for every nook and cranny of the game, but once you have more than a dozen techniques you will be able to mix them in a way that sparks innovation.


What about the Graphics?

The third-dimension has proven to be a much bigger challenge than I expected. But it is so much sweeter.

I love working in the 3D environment and it has given me hope that in the future with the help of others I can create bigger and prettier games. Even though it feels like every asset takes much longer to create, at the end of the day it feels like you have achieved more. Although I enjoyed working in 2D, I simply have to say that jumping into 3D feels like an ”Ascension". It opens your eyes to a new..... Dimension!

For Shalnor Legends 2, I'm keeping the 3D graphics to a basic, I do feel like a lot of assets need to be revisited and re-made though, hence the emphasis on "Everything is subject to change".


How much content are we getting?

It's hard to say at this point, but my goal is to make the game at least as long as the first game, but a lot more fun to play.

I feel like in Sacred Lands I cheated a bit and made the game lengthier by adding a lot of grind to it which was also highly criticized. The upgrades are going to be more diverse in the sequel and players will be able to pick what exactly they want to upgrade and getting the rest will be a choice for only the completionists and even then it will not take as long as it does in the first game. In addition I will be adding more mini-games in the game that make the process of obtaining gold quicker.

At the same time my goal is to make the main dungeons more interesting. When the player approaches a dungeon they should feel intimidated by the entrance itself, like a big gate opening or something like that. I want to make sure that the main dungeons are where the most fun game-play happens.

As for difficulty, this time I will not be splitting it into Normal and Heroic. The game will be on one difficulty, one that everyone can play. But at the same time there are going to be challenges in the game, and these challenges will be marked with warnings that will scare away the casual gamers, and invite the more dedicated ones.


Are you making the soundtrack all by yourself again?

Yes, when I developed Shalnor Legends Sacred Lands, my sound design skills were below basic. I had no knowledge of it, and I had only picked it up on the last year of the development, placeholder music was used until I finally figured out how to make the software work and finally I was able to make something up.

When I started designing Vosaria: Lair of the Forgotten, my skills had improved and I ended up with a much better soundtrack, it was also at this time I learned to mess with sound-effects, prior to this I had used open-source sound effects both in Shalnor Legends and Vosaria.

But now I have improved a lot in the audio department and for Shalnor Legends 2 I want to make sure that both the soundtrack and the sound effects are unique.



Click here to find all my games.

- Johnny Ostad