It’s been years since my last vlog, and since folks were asking me to make one, I decided to answer a few frequently asked questions, share gameplay footage and art, and officially announce to my youtube audience that my game is on Steam now! Hope you guys enjoy^^
Hi everyone! Due to the busy holiday season, traveling, and all of that good stuff… it’s been quite a while since I’ve updated my website! I’ll try my best to get you guys up to speed with the biggest updates:
1.) After nearly four years, I’ve *finally* finished Rakuen! We’re planning on releasing the game early this year (stay tuned for the exact date), but we have an official Steam Page now where you can wishlist the game if you’d like!
2.) In preparation for the game’s release, I thought it’d be fun to start uploading the soundtrack to my channel so that people can listen to the music. If you’d like to download the soundtrack, a portion of the tracks are available for pre-order at my Bandcamp, and the full 52-track OST will be released soon. In the interim, here is the Rakuen OST playlist from my channel (I’ll update it each time I upload a new track):
I hope you guys had a wonderful holiday season and that your 2017 is a good one! I’ll make sure to keep everyone updated on the exact release date of the game!
“The Midnight Tea Shop” is a little tea shop run by Kazuko and Kisaburo, a couple of 人魚 (Ningyo, or fish-people) who live on the other side of Morizora’s Forest. Because Kisaburo fell ill a long time ago, and was instructed by Morizora to stay in the nearby Onsen (hot springs) in order to heal, his wife has had to take care of the shop by herself. Kisaburo asks you to check if she needs any help with the shop, thus leading you on a strange journey involving working as a tea server in a giant mansion in the sky, and running errands for water dragons.
Today I’m gonna read you guys a bedtime story 🙂
I’m super excited to post this particular video, because instead of just sharing the audio, I thought it would be fun to include the actual cutscene from the game where Mom reads the Rakuen book (complete with all of the in-game art and music). I hope it helps you relax, and gives you a bit of a sneak peek at the world of Rakuen! The art in the thumbnail was created by Emmy Toyonaga, and the storybook pages by Amy Kim Kibuishi (http://felaxx.blogspot.com/).
Hello everyone! Today I’m sharing a piece of music off of the Rakuen OST called, “The Spirit Envoy.” This track only plays once during the game, when the Leeble Blacksmith warns you about a group of mysterious beings called the Envoy. Residents of Morizora’s Forest (the fantasy world from the Boy’s favorite storybook) describe the Envoy as “between this world and the next.” Sometimes harmless; merely passing through… but sometimes unpredictable and frightening when they’re overrun with negative energy.
I had a lot of fun composing this track, as it was originally supposed to be battle music for the game. Rakuen went through 3 iterations… at first it was a crafting game, then it became a jrpg, and now it’s an adventure game with point-and-click/room escape style puzzles, Zelda-like dungeons, and some mysteries that revolve around having to talk with the characters. There are however, no battles or fighting… So the only time I get to play this track is when you’re being briefed on the dangers of this one cave you need to navigate in order to reach the Forest Guardian, Morizora.
But because it started off as battle music (and because you were fighting against the Envoy, who can have drastically different motivations and energies), I had the (in my opion) fun challenge of making it feel fast-paced and exciting, while at the same time unsettling and mysterious. I composed sections that felt uplifting to represent the Envoy who were focused on traveling to their next destination… As well as sections that were dark and eerie (represented by uncomfortable melodies) that represented the Envoy who had unfinished business and were lost between worlds. I hope you guys enjoy!