Big Exciting Announcement!
Curly [Admin || 372 posts] on 5/12/2022 10:36 am
Greetings! We’re so excited to announce some next steps for Horse Fable. We have an Exciting Thing coming and we’re diving right into preparations for it.
A Bit of History
Many of you know our story and have actually been along for at least some of the ride with us. Bedouin and I have worked together for 7 years now. Bedouin actually bought Eqcetera back in early 2012, back before she knew how to code. She hired an outside coder to help her complete the game so it could officially launch V1. With school and work and outside life getting in the way, she ended up selling the game to the admin at the time. Fast forward to 2015 where that admin transferred the game back to her. This is where I came in as I was a mod at the time of the transfer.
In 2015, neither of us really knew anything about building or designing games. We had this outdated code base for a game that was quickly becoming more and more inactive. Between 2015 and 2018, we worked off and on to develop V2 but it was hard between other commitments for the both of us and sometimes months would pass between updates. In late 2018, Bedouin quit her full-time coding job to work as a freelancer which freed up a lot more time to work on Eqcetera.
That began our wild ride of learning and growing as game developers. While Bedouin had worked on large client projects before, Eqcetera is single-handedly the largest, most complex project she’s ever worked on. Beginning with V2, she coded every bit of it herself. I, on the other hand, learned horse genetics from scratch. V2 launched in 2019. It helped define all the basic systems of the game and gather feedback from players.
In 2020, the pandemic happened. Bedouin had started working on larger client projects that had a better code base than Eqcetera. So she decided to completely rebuild the game to be built in a framework that was an accepted industry standard. Hence V3 happened. During this time, I started to get more and more into game design and helped with the core functions of features. I also started to take over the community management side.
Then in 2021, we came up with the wild idea of rebranding. Eqcetera had never been a name people could remember right away. Bedouin and I met in person and realized by giving the game a world and a background, we had a lot more freedom to add things we had always wanted to see in games. So Horse Fable was born.
In all this time, we’ve always been going fast, fast, fast to develop something newer, better, and that players could enjoy. You all have been at the receiving end of that with never-ending bugs as we throw new things at you without fully letting old things settle. We’ve never taken the time to just rest and look back at what we’ve done.
For the first 3 months of this year, Bedouin and I both took a break from HoFa to handle personal things (Bedouin sold her house and I have been looking for a new job). Bedouin has never been paid for her work on HoFa and I, with my new job, have been able to opt to not be paid as well. We are both volunteering a large chunk of our time without much return for ourselves except the satisfaction of making our players happy. But by taking this break from the game, we took a look back at all that we’ve done and realized we were extremely proud of ourselves and all that we’ve accomplished. It’s not exactly where we want it to be but it’s getting closer every week!
Usually, at this point in the year, you could expect us to make some huge announcement that we’re rebuilding the game yet again. We’re very, very happy to say that’s not the case this year. Horse Fable from a coding and branding standpoint is in a place we’re very content with, and we only hope to continue building up from now on.
That brings us to now. We’ve never marketed the game because of the constant rebuilds, persistent bugs, and the nagging feeling that it was never ready to be marketable. Something was always incomplete or not working. Sending out an unpolished game is setting ourselves up for failure and disappointing not only our players but those who may join later.
… But now a huge opportunity has landed in our lap, and things will soon change.
Horse Fable Goes to BreyerFest!
Breyer is a large model horse company that creates and sells beautiful models of equines and other animals. Breyer models are often collected and some are even custom painted or sculpted. To celebrate these models and the equines we all love, Breyer hosts a yearly in-person (and virtual!) event at Kentucky Horse Park called BreyerFest. BreyerFest includes live demonstrations, model horse sales, workshops and more! This year, it will be on July 14th-17th.
We are proud to announce Horse Fable has been selected as a virtual seller for the BreyerFest marketplace. This means that Breyer will promote Horse Fable before and during BreyerFest through blogs, social media posts, and a spot in their event program. Horse Fable will be seen by thousands of Breyer enthusiasts. We decided it was time to take that giant leap, and we mean giant, and open HoFa’s doors to a much…much..bigger audience. What better way to showcase HoFa to a large horse-loving audience than going to the biggest equine event of the year?
Not only will we be participating virtually, but some of the HoFa staff will also be attending in person! Both myself and moderator ERA are currently planning to attend BreyerFest. We both are Breyer collectors and have decided to attend our first BreyerFest!
If you’d like to attend BreyerFest, event tickets are still on sale, as of today, from the Breyer website. We are in no way affiliated with Breyer nor give any guarantees pertaining to BreyerFest, we just wanted to let everyone know of the option to attend.
What does this mean for HoFa?
BreyerFest is held in July, and that gives us a very short amount of time to get Horse Fable ready for new players. We plan to speed up development in order to get HoFa ready.
Before July, our priorities include (in no particular order):
- Reduce the number of bugs in the game.
- Make sure the game is faster and can handle more players online at the same time.
- Fix quests and add the next quests.
- Make some changes to discipline and halter shows based on feedback we’ve seen. More details on this coming soon!
- Rebuild Herd Management so it works better for larger herds.
- Release the first version of the explore system.
- Add Hall of Fame back into the game with more categories than before.
- Complete the Feature Requests system.
- Add in referral prizes.
- Add in a tutorial email series for new accounts.
- … and more! (our list is quite long)
As you can see, we have a LOT to do. We’re going to try to get as much done as time allows, and we’ll need your support in helping squash all the bugs as we speed through this. We don’t have an update schedule for these updates and are just taking one week at a time to try to accomplish what we can.
In addition to getting the game ready for new players, we also want to celebrate BreyerFest in-game. We’ll be releasing more details about this as we get closer to July.
We hope you are as excited as we are to see Horse Fable get some exposure!
Bedouin & Curly
Post Count: 8
Exciting, I've always wanted to go to BreyerFest!
Post Count: 14
That's AWESOME! Congrats to you both- this is huge for HoFa!
Post Count: 14
Such great news! I'm happy about HoFa's success.
- my kingdom for a horse -
Post Count: 21
This is so exciting! Congrats on all you've accomplished and thank you for creating such an incredible game!
Post Count: 100
That's amazing! Congratulations to you both!
We wouldn't be here without your tireless work, and hopefully we can get enough new players from BreyerFest that you can start paying yourselves!
Post Count: 14
CONGRATS!!! as a fellow model horse collector I will see y'all there!!!
this is very exciting and a huge thing for HOFA!
Post Count: 43
Awesome!! So excited for you, Bed, the game, and the community! EQC/HoFa really does have the best community of any SIM I've ever played and y'all deserve the success!!
Thanks for the countless hours of hard work that it took to get us here <3
Post Count: 10
What HUGE news! I have collected Breyers for many years and now customize and refinish them! It's such a fun community, I'm thrilled you'll be participating!
Post Count: 21
Woohoo! That's awesome news! Congratz!
Post Count: 37
I agree with FluffyHorror!!!!! It's high time that Curly/Bed and the rest of the moderators get properly paid for their hard work!! This is EXTREMELY great news for Hofa!!!!!!!!