Episode 6 released !

September 17, 2013

The last episode of the Season 1 is now available on Steam ! You can also get the Whole Season Pack !


Episode 5 released !

October 30, 2012

Winter Voices is now back on steam, and the new episode 5 is now released ! Check our order page.


Winter Voices is back !

January 18, 2012

The game is now developed by Inner Seas SARL.

Winter Voices is now developed by Inner Seas, a little french company based in paris. Founded by the author of Winter Voices, Kévin Lehénaff, this company essentially continues the work of Beyond the pillars on its imaginary universe, for which three games and a few books are already planned.

You will find here the answer to a few recurrent or important questions.

Question : Why did the studio changed ?

Kévin Lehénaff : Essentially, Beyondthepillars encountered financial problems in 2010-2011 and was not able to continue. Finding money for a game like Winter Voices, especially when you are a little unknown company, is something difficult. Everyone did their best, from the CEO to the workers - but in the end, it wasn’t enough.

Guy Lévi-Bochi, Beyondthepillars' founder, invested (and lost) 15 years of his personal savings - all of his savings - so that this game can exist.

One thing that should really be said, however, is that the team was really strong and patient. These guys weren’t paid for months (up to 4-5 months for some of them !) and still they came to the office every day.

One other thing that should really be said : some of these guys never get paid back for this. Some of them have thousands euros - sometimes more than ten thousand - that were never paid and never will.

Don’t forget that Winter Voices was build on their time and patience. Society is about money, sadly, but for some guys here it’s still about people.

I know this is not something that you say on a official web page but - THANK YOU GUYS !
You allowed Winter Voices to still be alive today - you worked day and night on it (and sadly there was only one sofa !) - of course everything wasn’t perfect, of course there was a lot of human and financial problems - but in the end, this game is here because you were here. And well, I prefer remembering the good things (like these awful room separators that were perfect for playing volleyball), instead of all the sad ones.

Question : How do you define the "author" of a game ?

Kévin Lehénaff : Well, that’s a problematic word, because it says right and wrong things at the same time. In Beyondthepillars, I had the obscure role of "creative director", which is more precise. The author, or creative director, is the one that imagine the universe, write the story, decide the general design - and when everything is clear, dictates the road and verify that everythings goes as he planned.

The author does not everything. There’s twenty people in the office, and these are the people that develop the game. Some of them are artists too - just like a stage director has to guide actors through the text and story, the author of a game has to guide graphists, game designers and sound designers though the text and story.

That’s what author means in a video game - at least in our video games. That doesn’t mean "writer" and that doesn’t mean "developer of everything".

Just like a screenplay is the result of actors and cameramen guided by a director ; Winter Voices is the result of graphists, sound designers, engine developers and game designers guided by an author.

Question : In which language is developed
Winter Voices and why did you chose this one ?

Josselin Nauche : Winter Voices’ team initially gathered around a web-based MMO project. We had to chose a language that we knew. AS3 and Flex allowed us to mutualize our work on the two projects : the "client" part of the MMO, and the "small" RPG. At this time (2010), Adobe and half of the web thought that AIR applications would conquier the world... The "standalone" and "multiplatform" aspects convinced us.

After some episodes, we mastered this language and we found that we could do more than a "small" RPG. If we had planned the scale of the project, we would probably have chosen a more robust language - let’s say, C++ and OpenGL - but we would have had other problems. We would probably have bought an expensive engine and we would have patched it and tinkered with it to make it do things it was not initially planned to do...

In the end, we are fine with it and we don’t regret this technology choice. An unusual game doesn’t necessarily require a classic engine !

Question : Is the game "moddable" ?

Josselin Nauche : Yes, you can easily mod the game. It was planned specifically to be possible and easy. You can mod (or add) dialogs, character portraits (too few characters have one in my opinion), areas - graphisms, but also walkable tiles (or not), associated actions to these tiles ("triggers"), area switch, battles, type and skins of enemies, their spells, your spells, your summons, your imaginary friends, their skins and spells... And this is only the ones I can recall !

Except menus, everything is moddable as long as you have a text / picture editor. Everything may not be very intuitive, but there is enough examples in the classic episodes to teach you how to do. As for me, I always change the skin of my heroin to a blue little flame, when I play. ;-) Or another kind of enemy...

Sometimes it’s a little too easy. When we were debugging the game, the Game designers didn’t really like my screenshots without any character... And because I am not a very good player, I also messed a little with the spells... For example, I made it so that "Flee" cost no psyche points... Except that, of course, designers said : "How did you managed to go there ?" - "Well, with the free spell you can... Oh... There is no free spell... Okay... ...."

Question : Who did these awesome pictures and music ?

Kévin Lehénaff : Pictures were done by either Emmanuel "Malin" Bastid (art director) or Annick de Clercq (traditional watercolors). Musics were done by Balthazar Benadon. Level arts were done by Emmanuel "Malin" Bastid, Annick de Clercq, Mélanie Hellot and Léo Lasfargues. Animation were done by Emilie Delsescaux. Detailed credits episode per episode can be found in game. Don’t hesitate to email me at kevin.lehenaff[at]innerseas[dot]com if you want to get in touch with one of them.

Question : Will there be a sequel to Winter Voices S1 ?
Will there be books of the series ? What about this MMO project ?

Kévin Lehénaff : We decided that as long as we will be able to, we will continue the planned projects. Our goal is to deliver a full and debugged S1, then work on a S2 in which you will discover the end of the long travel. One of our goal is to release a book version of each season. These are the current projects. But there are also two projects for a distant future : first, the codename "Autumn Voices", which is the story of another heroin in Rosa Gallica. I can’t tell you who she is, but you will discover her in S2... An second, a MMO based on the universe of Winter Voices, which should be very different than everything you know.