October brought us another fantastic funding update with the Norwegian Film Institute awarding us a further NOK 800,000 to continue development on Last Days of Snow! We wouldn’t have been able to make this much progress on the game without the support of public organization like NFI and Viken Filmsenter. Thank you all for believing in us and congratulations to the team behind Last Days of Snow for their titanic efforts! For more information on the grant, please follow this link.
OUR GROWING FAMILY
Thanks to the financial support from NFI, Viken Filmsenter and Epic Games we received this year, we were able to expand our small team with a number talented developers across Norway & UK. We wish to use this occasion to thank the people who have joined us this year for the fantastic work they’ve been doing for Last Days of Snow in 2020. Thank you everyone!!!
Over the summer we had the lovely Jarle Grindhaug from Pressfire visit our “studio” / kitchen office to talk about Last Days of Snow. In August came the wonderful article on their website - you can check it out by following this link. Thank you Pressfire for the kind words and for letting us present Last Days of Snow!
NEW PROJECT TITLE
The Epic MegaGrants announcement also marked an important update for our project - it was the first time our project was referred to under its official title Last Days of Snow! Until that moment our game was commonly know as SNOW which was the working title we premiered our technical demo with at EGX 2019. Since EGX 2019 we wanted to change the name and in the months afterwards we though about the project, its themes and the feeling which our new title should evoke. That’s how we landed on Last Days of Snow. We hope you like it!
EPIC MEGAGRANTS AWARD!
July came with the best of news we have waited to share for a long time now - Loeding is an Epic MegaGrants recipient!!! We are humbled and honored to have received this financial support and recognition from Epic MegaGrants and Epic Games. Congratulations to the rest of the grant recipients and a big “Thank you!” to everyone who has worked and supported Last Days of Snow and our talented team! For a full list of the grant recipients, please follow this link.
NEW NFI & VIKEN FILMSENTER GRANTS!
In June we received a most wished for message - we got a whooping NOK 750,000 in additional funding! A few months prior we had re-applied to the Norwegian Film Institute (NFI) and Viken Filmsenter for a new batch of development grants to continue building upon the gameplay demo for Last Days of Snow. We were elated to hear that on both occasions we were successful with our application. We want to thank NFI and Viken Filmsenter for the continued support for Last Days of Snow - we could not have gotten this far without your guidance and financial support! Links to the announcements can be found here - NFI / Viken.
WINGSFUNDME GDC RELIEF FUND TO THE RESCUE!
Being a small indie company working on an ambitious project that hasn’t been fully funded can often be stressful, especially when the budget is running low in the chaos and uncertainty of a global pandemic. To make matters worse, we lost some much needed funds around the expo cancellations and in cases like flight tickets - some expensive ones - we could only get vouchers. Like many other indies, we applied for the WingsFundMe GDC Relief Fund and luckily we were approved! The funds really helped us at a time of need and we wish to thank each and every contributor to the GDC Relief Fund for their support. Thank you!!!
COVID-19 & CANCELLED EXPOS
Nobody could have predicted how 2020 will affect all of our lives. In the months leading up to March 2020 our team was certain that we will show our work at the major spring expos GDC (USA), EGX Rezzed (UK) and Nordic Game (SWE). All of that changed in a matter of weeks. Luckily for us, being a small and agile team meant we could relatively easy accommodate for these force majeure circumstances. We quickly shifted our efforts towards using the remainder of our available funds to sustain studio operations and to continue development on our gameplay demo.
NGDC+ OSLO QUALIFIERS
In January 2020 we also participated at the Nordic Game Discovery Contest Oslo Qualifying round where we pitched in front of a live audience Last Days of Snow. There was some tough competition out there and to our delight our team won this qualifying round! We wish to thank the judges and the audience for their votes and we look forward to the finals held in November 2020. For more information on the full list of finalist, please visit the following link.
EDGE MAGAZINE ARTICLE!
For Loeding 2020 began in the best possible way with a 4-page preview in the January 2020 edition of EDGE magazine! Words could not describe how happy we were from the glowing review. A big shout out to Chris Schilling for the incredibly kind words and attention given! The web version of the article can be read on the GamesRadar+ website by following this link.
UNREAL PRESENTS SHOWCASE
Following an invitation from Epic Games, we got to present the technical demo of Last Days of Snow at the Unreal Presents Showcase in London. It was a fantastic opportunity to meet with fellow studios using Unreal Engine and to meet financiers and publishers. Thank you Epic Games for having us and for the wonderful memories!
FIRST PRESS REVIEWS
Shortly after EGX 2019 ended the press reviews of the technical demo began to emerge (under the working title of SNOW). We are thrilled with the positive responses we received and we want to thank everyone for their kind words! Below you will find headers and links to some of those fantastic articles:
"Snow is a Nordic narrative thriller with style and potential" - Eurogamer
"How Norway's wintry charm inspired SNOW - the narrative adventure game" - Fanatical
"‘Snow’ is Beautiful, But Something is Not Right” - IndieGamesPlus
“EGX 2019 – Our Indie Picks, Part Two” - SquareXO
“EGX 2019: 5 of the Best Games We Played” - Cultured Vultures
“EGX 2019: SNOW” - Later Levels
“EGX 2019 : Premières interactions homme-machine dans SNOW” - Factornews (FRA)
NORWEGIAN FILM INSTITUTE FUNDING
A week after EGX 2019 we received the fantastic news we won a NOK 500,000 development grant from the Norwegian Film Institute which meant we could continue doing what we love! A huge thank you to the panel of judges for the support and to everyone who has contributed to the development and grant application process of Last Days of Snow. For full list of grant recipients follow this link.
EGX 2019 SHOWCASE
October was an incredibly important month for us - with the short atmospheric technical demo we created we applied for additional funding from the Norwegian Film Institute (NFI) and we were going to showcase the project for the first time outside of our studio at the EGX 2019 at Excel London. We hoped people will like what they get to experience even though we were in the early stages of development. As such, we were extremely relieved and humbled at the overwhelmingly positive responses we received from investors, press and audiences alike. We wish to thank everyone who visited our booth and gave us their attention and feedback!
INNOVATION NORWAY GRANT SECURED
In order to make a bigger splash at EGX 2019 and get as many people as we could to test our demo, we applied for Innovation Norway's pre-market evaluation grant. A few weeks later we had the fantastic news we were granted NOK 90,000! The funds were instrumental in allowing us to promote more effectively Last Days of Snow at EGX. Thank you for the support, Innovation Norway!!!
FULL PERFORMANCE MOTION CAPTURE @ CENTROID3D
A month after the photogrammetry session we were at legendary Pinewood Studios to record the prologue cutscenes for Last Days of Snow using Centroid3D’s state-of-the-art full performance capture studio. With their help we were able to capture the nuanced performances from each cast member, to give every cutscene the immersiveness we are looking to create. The results are more than spectacular and we are thrilled to have collaborated with Centroid3D on this project. We can’t wait to see their new facilities in London and record more!
CREATING DIGITAL DOUBLES @ FBFX DIGITAL
With a great sense of excitement, in June 2019 we underwent the process of creating digital doubles for the core cast members of Last Days of Snow with the help of the amazing in-house photogrammetry team and facilities at FBFX Digital. Using FBFX’s state-of-the-art body and facial rigs, we received incredibly detailed scans of our cast members in and out of costume. We are more than pleased with the results and we are incredibly grateful for the support FBFX have given us. Fingers crossed we get to scan many more actors at their facilities!
CASTING FOR LAST DAYS OF SNOW
With Viken Filmsenter’s financial support, spring 2019 marked an incredibly busy period for our team as continued developing the world of Barvik while preparing for the project’s first set of photogrammetry and motion capture sessions. One of our first big challenges was developing the script for the prologue of our story and finding the right cast for it within a short timeframe. We did not have the resources to do live casting sessions, so everything had to be done remotely via casting tapes. Luckily for us, we succeeded in casting a fantastic group of talented actors who brought to life our characters in the best possible way. A big round of applause to Arthur Clague (OSKAR), Florence Evans (EVA), Stephane Cornicard (LEIF) and Christy Meyer (ELSA) for being part of this project!
FIRST FUNDING SUCCESS
In February 2019, we received funding for the first time! Viken Filmsenter awarded the team NOK 250,000 to develop a short demo of the project with the intention to showcase it at the Eurogamer Expo (EGX) in October 2019. In addition to the funding, we were put in touch with our mentor and dear friend Jørgen Tharaldsen (Megapop Games) who continues to this date to be a great supporter of our team and project. A big "Thank you!" for the team at Viken Filmsenter for supporting us and to Jørgen for the invaluable advice he has given us! For more information on the grant, follow this link.
FIRST TEAM MEMBERS
Gradually the team of Last Days of Snow came together as Jonathan reached out to Nikolay Savov, Gustav Morstad and Jeanette Aga. The team kept on expanding the world of Barvik and the concept behind Last Days of Snow. With our initial designs, we approached Centroid3D and FBFX and began building on our relationship. With their written support for the project and our initial designs and plans, we applied for funding in Norway under the development title SNOW.
START OF DEVELOPMENT
Last Days of Snow earliest development dates back to January 2018 when Jonathan began working on the character development pipelines which proved to be one of the project’s key pillars to achieve a high visual standard at a fast pace and low cost. He did a lot of experimentation, figuring out how a photogrammetry based pipeline can be used to create our characters quickly through automated processes. His early tests resulted in Oskar’s first iteration (pictures below). Alongside this, Jonathan laid the groundwork for the original concept for the world, setting and story of the game.