Half-year checkup, updates to the Centaur avatar & the road ahead
Back in February, I made an extensive post detailing the experiences of the past year. 2016 was rough, what with some family health issues and the onset of extensive Bento development and testing. I was looking forward, at the time, to bringing to life more Bento content as well as concentrating on some more home & garden - and by my account, I feel like a fair portion of that has actually happened!

Particularly since Bento went public, I've been able to put together and release five new avatars or avatar-based accessories and put them to great use! The Tiny Perytons received critically positive response, the webbed wings have been excellent additions to the every-day human avatar, the Lizard Footmen were a particularly fun exercise in detail and rigging.  Fisheyes made a splash at Fantasy Faire, where the Centaur avatars also made their debut. 

On the decor side, I've also eked out some time to work on indoor azalea trees, new hen&chick arrangements, a fully accessorized writing desk, and we had quite a lot of fun hanging out at this year's Home & Garden Expo. 

With all that in mind, this past week has been particularly busy as preparations were made to update the centaurs with an applier system. This was originally slated for release in April, but was pushed back so that we could ensure all of our proverbial ducks were in a row. NeoBokrug Elytis of Desolate Studios dedicated an exceptional amount of time to making a rock solid applier system and documenting it - in the mean time, I directed my in-world time towards creating new coats and documentation for both appliers and preparing centaur dev kits. (For which the application process is now open) If all goes well, dev kits should go out within the next two to three weeks.

Moving forward, updates to the kitten avatars are in the works, but will be quite involved, given the amount of material I've created for it in the past and just how much needed to be updated. To date, topology has been updated both  to give the avatar more curves as well as implement Bento functionality. 

Preliminary facial animation tests have been mostly positive - Bento bones were also added to the avatar's tail. I've also been working on the long awaited avatar AO, which will be bipedal and come with every edition of the avatar. 

Quadrupedal support for the kitten avatar will be discontinued - the avatar mesh was originally conceived as a bipedal tiny and previous attempts to modify its posture for quadrupedal use have not really leant towards an aesthetic that I am happy with. 

Still to do are LOD optimizations, textural fixes, creation of some new coats, and updating to the new exchanger/updater system. 

Of note: no plans are currently in place to add the applier system to the kitten avatars at this time. This is not to say it won't happen, but I'd like to see how well uptake with the centaurs goes first before any modifications need to be made to suit the kittens (or for that matter, any other WoO creation). 

Also, as an upfront policy, I must stress that while I do offer UV layouts upon request for *any* of my creations, I will *not* be offering dev kits or appliers to gacha items for the foreseeable future.

Upcoming Events:

Generally, I have been trying not to take on too many more events. Wilds of Organica won't be at The Arcade this coming September, but perhaps we'll be asked back if enough people express interest to them. Candy Faire will occur in November and just to switch things up a bit, this time Wilds (instead of Organica) will attend. 

I haven't yet decided upon new content, but existing Wilds fans can expect to see at least some candy-coated madness when it comes to existing items. 

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