Tail Towns Insiders Interviews Tail Towns Friends Creative Director
Hey everyone! Based on our reputation, we were granted the opportunity to ask the Tail Towns Friends Creative Director a bunch of questions on Tail Towns Insiders. Some of what we asked included general Tail Towns Friends gameplay, Act 2 availability, figurine availability and features, and a whole lot more.
We took suggestions from all of you and came up with what we thought were the top 10 most-requested questions, and here are the answers -- we hope you enjoy the interview, we found some of the answers very interesting and are really excited for figurines and Act 2!
We want to thank the Creative Director for his time and effort that clearly went into these answers. We'd also like to mention that our partner store, Ameriwade, is going to be offering Tail Towns Figurines for a special presale price starting on Thursday, July 5th.
First off, thank you for the opportunity to discuss Tail Towns Friends with you! Webkinz Insider really is a great community, and community is exactly what Tail Towns Friends is all about. So I appreciate the chance to talk directly to the Insiders and give you a glimpse into this exciting new world.
1) Will the figurines originally shown still be released? What do they unlock? Projected Cost? The figurines are a key part of the Tail Towns franchise. Each figurine is based on a character that lives inside the world of Tail Towns Friends. You will meet them in Greenwood City, the bustling hub of our tales of intrigue. When you activate a figurine, you unlock a special Secret Diary storyline that draws you into that character's personal drama. For example the Bjorn the Baker must struggle to balance his creativity against the rigid demands of others, while George the Gardener is pining for one of the ladies of Greenwood. In every case, the players are right in the middle and their actions are integral to the dramatic stories unfolding.
Players can also look forward to completing a Figurine's story goals because they are rewarded with a beautiful and unique Décor item that can be clicked once a day for special bonus rewards.
The Collections interface will show you all 12 of the Series 1 Figurines. We will have a Store Locator section to let you find the closest store that sells the Figurines. And if you just can't wait or don't have access to a store, you can simply purchase a Secret Code for a Figurine using Facebook Credits. If you do that you won't get the physical Figurine, but you will unlock the special story that awards the Figurine specific item.
Our suggested retail price for Figurines is $14.99, but that is really up to each retailer. You can expect to see figurines in stores in August.
2) Are there plans to animate any of the items/graphics? like on WW? One of the key goals for Tail Towns Friends was to create a luxurious, relaxing destination that pampered the player like the best bed and breakfast you've ever dreamed of. A huge part of that is the lush graphics. We have achieved our uniquely rich visuals by using art techniques that are different from most other Facebook games. The benefits of this approach are obvious when you play the game, but it has presented other technical challenges. Animation is something we all want to have as soon as possible, but we need to engineer the approach in a very efficient way so it doesn't make the game run too slowly. I assure you it is on our roadmap for 2012, although we have a lot of great ideas competing to get into the game, so I cannot say exactly when we will see little butterflies flitting about.
3) Are there going to be other types of animals other than mice? The world of Tail Towns is based on a civilization of forest critters who have come together to live in harmony with each other. So that theme is reflected in the kind of creatures you will find in our world. Right now we have Mice, Chipmunks, Raccoons, Foxes, Rabbits and a Cougar. And look at the size of William Rete; we suspect he has some Rat DNA in his background. Oh, in Act 2 you will meet a Honey Badger named D'Zyne, he is rather saucy!
4) Other jobs and businesses? We cannot wait to get Act 2 into your hands. You will be able to work with Emily's Bakery and D'Zyne's Boutique, with new Grain and Textile Seeds. We also have plans for secondary businesses and resources that we will be placing in the outer Lots for you to discover.
5) Will there be any associated print content? (Comic book/graphic novel) Lore? We took a big leap of faith by investing a huge amount of time and effort into making great stories. We HOPED players would enjoy them, and your question is confirmation that the community is hungry for more tales. As of today, we don't have any plans for a comic book or graphic novel because we have so much writing to do for the game, which we're really excited about. In the future, however, there's certainly a chance we'll work on that kind of project.
6) For many players, Act I is all done, when/where is act II? We read the fan pages every day and we hear you! To give you a picture of where we stand, most recently we've had to focus on the story lines of the 12 figurine characters. With figurines due in shelves this August, we had to dedicate a significant amount of time on their storylines (about 60 goals in total – about the same number as all of Act 1). We are now getting the last of these new Goals into the game. The next thing our crack writing team is working on will be Act 2. We know you are all impatient to see it, and frankly we are chomping at the bit to get it in front of you. While Act 2 isn't scheduled until the 3rd week of July, we do have more stories to tell in our next release next week, which is the continuation of the Beautiful Home Club storyline. You can then expect more goals every two weeks after that.
7) How often will there be a content drop? Our operational plan is to release ~30 new Goals per month, with new items coming in every two weeks. As I mentioned earlier, most recently we've had to focus on the figurine goals since they will be on sale starting in August. It's slowed down our ability to create new content, but the good news is that from here on out, we are laser-focused on delivering new goals and store items every two weeks.
8) With there be other quests with other characters? Yes. We don't want to overwhelm you with a huge cast, but there will always be new characters trickling into the stories to keep everyone on their toes. One new character just insisted on being written into a story yesterday, he wasn't planned but he kind of took over once we gave him some dialogue. Our writing process is a combination of planned structure that is filled in organically, like a vine growing over a trellis. We know where we want to go, but the process can take us places and give us characters that we never saw coming.
9) Any hints on getting XP or rep points faster? We called the game Tail Towns Friends because on Facebook it's all about Friends. The more Friends you have, the more actions you can do every game session. Friends give you more Energy, more Harvests, more fun ideas from the way they decorate their places. You always have Madison, Cheeser and Iris to visit every day, but we hope you are happy inviting your real life friends to share your Tail Towns experience. In addition to the regular business and goal gameplay, I really urge everyone to relax and enjoy the fun from spending your Acorns. Decorate your country home to become a living work of art that you are proud to show your friends and family. We want your Tail Towns Friends experience to be like a good meal that you can savor at your leisure.
10) What do the little numbers beside the friends shops mean? Do you mean the little numbers on the business icons in the Promotion pop-up? If yes, those are the number of local businesses you have that will benefit from the Orders you get by Promoting.
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