crimson diamond gazette

The Crimson Diamond Gazette #45

Welcome to the latest issue! News and fun facts inside!

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"Talking To Women About Videogames" podcast episode part 2 of 2

"Talking To Women About Videogames" podcast episode part 1 of 2

Joystick interview (in English)

Joystick interview (in Greek)

Plans of Adventure Game Devs in 2022 (timestamped link)

IGDA Twin Cities Talk: "The Practical Magic of Pixel Art"

Steam Next Fest (Oct 2021) Developer's Let's Play of The Crimson Diamond Demo

The Genesis Temple Podcast #8 – Julia Minamata (The Crimson Diamond, Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator)

Interviews from the Multiverse: Julia Minamata

Lockdown Con II "The Indie Games Revolution" Panel (first panel of the day)'s Geek's Guide to the Galaxy article

Pixelles BIPOC Creator Program grant recipient

usesthis interview (interview about my hardware and software set-up)

8-bit Ninja interview about The Crimson Diamond (in German)

CAAD52 magazine article about The Crimson Diamond (in Spanish)

Cabel Sasser's Photoshop Revelation clip

HomeTeam GameDev Podcast -- Guest Julia Minamata

CityNews - Canada Showcased Through Video Games

CBC Thunder Bay - Superior Morning Radio Interview

TVOntario article

Retro 'Rents Podcast episode

PAX East 2020 "What's Next for Adventure Games" Panel

Adventure Games Podcast episode

Big Boss Battle -- Featured

Escapist Magazine article

Classic Adventurer, Issue 07 -- Featured

Adventure Gamers AdventureX Round-up, part II

Scarborough Mirror Article

Digital Roadmap Article Article

IndieGames+ Article

PC GAMER Article

Adventure Gamers Announcement Article

Adventure Corner Article (German)

YouTube LP Playlist

The CGG Podcast: # 44 Third appearance, updates since April 2019!

The CGG Podcast: #20 The Crimson Diamond updates & The Colonel's Bequest

The CGG Podcast: #1 Episode featuring me discussing The Crimson Diamond



Most Anticipated Laurel




Wordplay showcase

Get Crimson Diamond merch on my Society6 store!



I help admin a thriving classic gaming community called the Classic Gamers Guild on Facebook. We host plenty of events during the week, as well as contests and a bunch of other great stuff. We even have a podcast and I was the first guest!




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Editor: Julia Minamata -


June 2022

Hello, dear readers! Happy June! There have been a few hot days so far here in Toronto, and a bit of rain. There have also been a lot of gloriously sunny, not-too-hot days, too! I hope the weather is being kind to you, wherever you are.

Developer update: For the months of May and June I've been working full-time on contract, creating art for a friend's game. The contract is two months long, after which I'll return to developing The Crimson Diamond!

I've been learning how to paint digitally using Clip Studio Paint (50% off until June 21) and also learning a bit of 3D modelling in Blender! I'm excited to share the results below!


Strange Dungeon Concept Art

This concept art of a mushroomy fungal environment is closest to my illustration style (you can see more of my examples of my illustration work here!). I've always been more comfortable defining shapes with linework, not light and shadow, so recreating the painterly style for this projct was a challenge for me!

texture sheet for Strange Dungeon

I started this contract work by learning how to use Clip Studio Paint. It's a similar drawing program to Photoshop, but there is a particular brush that needed to be used to create this painterly style. Here is the first texture sheet I created. I was glad that these assets needed to be painted in grey tones! I could concentrate on trying to defining the forms and not worry about the colours I was using.

Strange Dungeon creatures

After I completed a few texture sheets I created concepts for some creatures that will appear in the game.This time I painted them in full colour and had to build them in separate sections, so each leg/claw/etc could be rigged and animated. I was more comfortable with the painterly style at this stage, and the creatures required more subtle brushstrokes which were easier for me to paint.

Crab separated into segments

Here's the muffin/mushroom crab and all its parts!


Strange Dungeon kitchen concept

Next came building an environment! It started with a concept illustration for a spaceship kitchen.

Strange Dungeon 3D model

I learned how to build a basic 3D version of the concept in Blender, with the help of my friend and a Youtube tutorial (scroll down for the link to the video and the first 3D room I created!).

Strange Dungeon 3D coloured

Here's a render of the finished 3D kitchen, with some colours applied to it!

Strange Dungeon Painted

The final stage of this art was to take each object and element in the room as 2D images and use Clip Studio Paint compose them together (in separate image layers), then add more details and brush stroke textures by hand, using the lighting of the Blender models as guides! I streamed some of this process, you can see it here.

tutorial room image

Here's the first little room I created using a very helpful Youtube tutorial by 3DGreenhorn. The video is 15 minutes long and covers a lot of basics very quickly! It took me a couple of days to get through it, but I'm very pleased with the result.


Witch Strandings (published by Modern Wolf) now has a launch date! July 7! Check out the Witch Strandings Steam page by clicking here!

Witch Strandings image

There's an amazing trailer for the game, check it out here!

Witch Strandings trailer image 1

And here are a couple of stills!

Witch Strandings trailer image 2


Pre-orders for the Premium Physical Edition of Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator are still available, shipping this Fall! This is for the Switch, and the game can be purchased digitally on the Switch store, too.

Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator physical release iamge

Here's a link to pre-order the double vinyl release of the soundtrack!

Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator Vinyls image

Art Stream of Clip Studio Paint

Art streams have been less pixel art and more digital painting! In the latest video I'm painting more homey details into the kitchen.

June 7 art stream

Although I did work a bit on my pixel art bucket on a stream too!

Dan music stream image

Dan and I did a combo stream since last gazette! He composed some amazing "final confrontation music" from scratch, check it out here!

Streams happen on Crimson C'Tuesdays at 8pm Eastern! I'm a_maplemystery, follow me there and/or on Twitter to get notified when I go live!


Let's play stream image

In the past month I've covered a lot of ground in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure! Made it through the zeppelin stage and have crashed in the countryside What a gorgeous game! I've been amazed to learn that there are different paths depending on the choices you've made! In my next Let's Play episode I'll be replaying the zeppelin section to explore one such path!

I post the videos after the fact on my Youtube channel, with the entire art streams but also a trimmed version of the Let's Plays, in their own playlist!



Cross-stitching progess

I haven't finished my cross-stitch of Evan Richards, but I'm very close! I'm missing the appropriate colour of light grey to finish this and I still need to fill in the dark blue background on the right! I have to visit a craft store with the two colours of light grey I currently have (you can see them both on the left side by Evan's neck) and pick a tone that is darker than one and lighter than the other. And a bit warmer, too!

Evan character portrait image


image of Gemstones Youtube channel


DID YOU KNOW: There's a fantastic Youtube channel that shows amazing mineral specimens and gems that is updated frequently and posts entertaining and educational videos! I've been watching tons of these videos, the hosts are knowledgeable and enthusiastic. Some of my favourite videos include Unboxing Diamonds, How I Became a Pro Gem Collector, and Unboxing Diamond Imitators!


bucket animation


Check the sidebar for links to my Patreon and PayPal! Or visit The Crimson Diamond's Steam page follow the game, and add it to your wishlist! There's a FREE playable demo too, for Windows PC and Mac! <3


Thanks for reading! Happy June!

-- JM