Friday, March 29, 2013

Music from Ghost of Thornton Hall

To reveal a little more about Ghost of Thornton Hall and for the sake of added excitement, we decided to launch the game's soundtrack before the game officially releases. For $4.99 you can download the complete set of music played in the background of the game, including the scare sequence music clips (which happen really quickly).

In case you weren't aware, we already have our older games' soundtracks available here if you'd like them. (We are still considering putting together the remaining music for games #20-25).

My favorite tracks in GTH are "Past" and "Sweet Charlotte", and a few parts will be heard in the official trailer that will be launched later. Speaking of the future...try solving the weekend puzzle below! *Edited* I completely forgot to give you your directions! Here it is: add to divide.

Also, on an extra note:

~Little Jackalope~
"I find the treasure and stop all crime..."

Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Characters of Thornton Hall

We have been working all day on getting the characters ready and up on our Ghost of Thornton Hall page, and voila! Here they are! Check them out here and read up on the suspects and friends from the game.

Do you have a clue to who the suspect is? What really happened to Jessalyn? What's the ghost's real story? The answers to these will be revealed in your investigation while playing the game!
"I solve the case every time..."
Side note: Oh my wow. the trailer is coming together a bit more, and I may venture to say that it is definitely the creepiest, freakiest, most intriguing trailer we have EVER presented. It's insane. (o.O) And it's not even done yet. (!) Stay tuned, it may be a little while longer to wait for it's grand presentation, but it will definitely be worth it!

~Little Jackalope~

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


Well today I was planning on talking more about Ghost of Thornton Hall...but when I first came in this morning, that plan changed. (Anyways, sorry for such a late night post, I was wrapped up in a meeting that lasted a few hours, and we just got back. Unfortunately I can't say what we were up to today until September. ~.^)

This is what happened to me today:
"...I'm Nancy Drew, I hope you've heard of me..."

WHOA. Ok, so somebody mentioned in the last company meeting that my egg culprit from last summer was never caught. Bam! Someone then took that cue (and opportunity) to steal the culprit spotlight....and last night placed a dozen eggs around my desk and around the office for me to find. I took pictures of the first ten, but the one in my lunchbox in the fridge and the one on the games bookshelf I failed to get a picture of.

From left to right, top to bottom are the locations I found these cute little critters filled with bubble gum and candy:

~The first picture is a clipping of the wrapper/box that must have contained the eggs, hinting at the amount I needed to find....
  1. In the candy bowl in production
  2. The artist's camera tripod in the hall
  3. On books in the library
  4. In the testing lab
  5. In my own desk drawer -- the classic location
  6. In my elf hat in my mailbox
  7. In my file shelves
  8. On my ND games shelf
  9. On my desk by the pencil cup
  10. In my pirate hat above my computer
I was unable to gather fingerprints, and sadly did not have my motion camera turned on...which everyone now knows about... (>.<) I don't have any leads, and all the suspects I questioned aren't giving anything away. Hmmm...what shall I do? This mystery needs to be solved! ARGH! I'm onto you egg bandit!

One last note for today:

~Little Jackalope~

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

GTH Desktop Icon

I thought I could sneak you a peek at what the Ghost of Thornton Hall desktop icon looks like:
"Add this to my resume..."

This is from our Character Designer's original concept illustration for the Ghost, and since we really liked it, it was made into the official desktop icon. It can also be found in the game, and on the box art in two places. Eventually this lovely painting will make it's way to the Merchandise Store for you to put on a t-shirt, mouse pad, poster, mug or whatever else you would like to put it on!

Head's up! New poll on the right!
~Little Jackalope~

Monday, March 25, 2013

An Exciting GTH Week

Although it isn't pre-order time, and of course, the trailer isn't going to be ready anytime soon...I would still venture to say that this week is going to be an mildly-exciting one for Ghost of Thornton Hall!

The weekend puzzle gave away one of the anticipations this week:

To solve it, use Morse code to get the correct numbers. Those single digit numbers represent the letters of the alphabet. The forward slashes simply divide the single numbers to get a double-digit number. Example: (••---/-----) is (2/0) or the number 20, and converts to the 20th letter in the alphabet, which is T. The complete solution is this [Characters Thursday] which means we are putting that page up on our site that day. (YAY!)

Thursday, check. Friday is another big day we are going to release something else that we have not really mentioned yet. So stay tuned to find out what that reveal is!

Check it out: a mobile wallpaper of the GTH cover art:

We have one more announcement this week, but it's milder. I'm not entirely sure when it will be ready, but it will definitely be slowly coming in bit-by-bit, so you may notice a part of it somewhere soon.

~Little Jackalope~

Friday, March 22, 2013

Weekend Puzzle #190

The first day of spring wasn't too long ago, and the birds were singing, the trees and flowers were coming to life, and the snow was falling....wait. Yep. Snow, check. It snowed today. Awkward Washington weather I suppose. Later it became really sunny and pretty so we went out to play hackysack.
...18 days...
And now I'm inside the office writing to you! :) Here's your weekend challenge! Enjoy!

Now I'm going to check out the progress on the official trailer...Mwahaha. XD

~Little Jackalope~

Thursday, March 21, 2013

GTH Page is Live!

If you haven't heard the news, stop reading this blog and go check out the Ghost of Thornton Hall page! It went live just a couple hours ago! WHOO-HOO!!! Also, if you scroll down to the bottom of the page, the button to check out the screenshots page is live as well.

The Characters will be revealed later, all in due time! However, one character is already revealed...if you look closely here:

Can't say anymore than that, sorry! (~.^)

On a smaller note, there are a few more images up on our Merchandise Store here, choose a product, then choose to look through the "Her Interactive" images to find the Nancy Drew logo on pink, the silhouette with quote bubble, the quote bubble "It's Locked!", and the "It's Locked!" quote with a key. Examples shown here:

~Little Jackalope~

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

GTH is Golden!

Today is an important day in our office! Today Ghost of Thornton Hall has gone gold! This means our final game build is complete, no more changes are going to be made, and it is now off to be burned onto discs, printing the boxes and then packaged. There is a lot that goes into this next stage, but I won't bore you with all the details...I will say that every day between here and May 14th will be needed to work on preparing it's red carpet entrance out to the world!

Today, at exactly 2:30pm PST, all of the leads gathered in a ceremonious meeting to officially sign off approval for this new game. Here, our Marketing Director signs his name on the official document.

And here is the collection of all of the leads' signed documents:

Hooray! Immediately after that meeting ended, we held an introduction meeting to ND#29, and I'm trying not to say the three letter abbreviation for this game (because it completely gives itself away). We learned about the story, setting, characters, what was going to happen and who the villain was...even though I've already done some snooping and seen some of the artist's work in progress. One word to describe ND29? INTENSE.

To celebrate today, our Lead Tester, Jeanne, and our Designer, Cathy, brought it celebratory cookies:


Head's up! We are having a Twitter Quote Contest today only, AND a Facebook Caption Contest that will last until end of day Monday! Head over to enter for a chance to win some prizes!
~Little Jackalope~

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Music of Egypt and Science

Nobody panic! If you've checked out our web site or have noticed the conversation on the Message Boards... we are not retiring Warnings at Waverly Academy, in fact we updated our site today to better clarify. Once the physical box copies of WAC are sold out, we will not be re-stocking them. The digital download, however, will still be available for purchase if you do not have it yet.

Last week we launched some new soundtracks! While we are still considering the release of Music for Mysteries #5 (games 20-25), we have made Tomb of the Lost Queen and The Deadly Device soundtracks available! Want to travel to Egypt while in your car? Or pretend you are the smartest scientist in the world by listening to the music played in the lab? I'm super excited for these... in fact, I've already started using the music from these games as my alarm clock music. XD That's a bit nerdy...

Since these soundtracks are individual games, you can download them for only $4.99 on our web site here. Stay tuned! Perhaps someday in the near future we will release the Ghost of Thornton Hall music!

Head's up! New poll to your right!
~Little Jackalope~

Monday, March 18, 2013

Rated E for Everyone

If you have looked carefully at the box art for Ghost of Thornton Hall, you may have noticed that the game has been rated "E for Everyone" (and with "Mild Violence"). I have noticed that a few message board members brought up the question "Why is it rated E and not E10+ since we (Her Interactive) claim this is going to be the scariest game to date in the Nancy Drew game collection?" Well, I can answer this for you! :)

We have already submitted our game and have received this rating, which is official. The ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) judges games based on several criteria, (and you can learn more about these here on their site) including Violence, Language, Humor, Blood/Gore, Suggestive themes, Drugs/Alcohol and Gambling. The only category that really affects our games rating is the Violence found in them.

One example why Shadow at the Water's Edge received an E10+ (for Everyone ages 10 and up) is that at one point towards the end of the game, you the player (as Nancy Drew) are physically grabbed and forced into water to be drowned. This is considered more violent than say, if Nancy was going to suffocate from smoke in the burning town hall of Alibi in Ashes.

Ghost of Thornton Hall will not have such specific violence as SAW. After all, can a ghost really grab you? Maybe in some way she will in the game, I won't say...but if she does, it will not be like that "ghost" in SAW.

Scariness is not a factor in the ESRB Rating. Since being scared is more a state of mind, it could mean different scare levels for different players. Think of Curse of Blackmoor Manor: it's one of the scariest games we have released, yet it, too, is rated E for Everyone.

As for the scare level in will just have to wait and experience it for yourself! Mwahahaha! XD

As for the weekend solve it, first highlight the entire poem with your cursor. Find the extra letters [GIZROVIZKIRO]. Then write our the alphabet forwards, then underneath that write it backwards. The letters written above are found when you reflect them against the real alphabet. Example: A=Z, B=Y, C=X and so on. Your end answer is [Trailer April]. Now how exciting is that?

~Little Jackalope~

Friday, March 15, 2013

Weekend Puzzle #189

For those of you who don't have this game, The Haunting of Castle Malloy is on sale this weekend!

And if you haven't followed us on our other sites; Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and most importantly YouTube (I'll give you one guess why I'm nudging you here...) sign up! The Amateur Sleuth blog posts only once a day, but our other sites we post several times a day if we have important news, contests or other fun things to participate in or share. So this is your early head's up: more news will be coming about GTH! Are you ready for it?

Here's another hint, in the weekend puzzle:

The answer is reflecting yours...
SheGgraced the floor
With her festiveIdisguise
SheZcarried a secret
And capturedRsome eyes

Stepped awayOfrom the group
She thenVmet a foe,
The scare wasIfatal
ThatZset her face aglow

Fire soKred,
NightIso black,
Dear, sweetRCharlotte...
PleaseOcome back!!

 ~Little Jackalope~

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Ghost of Thornton Hall Box Art Revealed!

Today's the day!!! Enough gab, take a look at this cover:
For a while Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake was my favorite cover art, but now this one has made it to my #1 favorite spot. What do you make of this? The graveyard with the ghost lingering by a crypt, looking on and thinking about her past...the old, dilapidated manor to the right casts fear into the minds of those who visit...and the ghost girl, front and center with the reflection of the flames from her charred past illuminates her perplexed face.

What are your thoughts to this new illustration? We'd love to hear from you!


~Little Jackalope~

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

GTH Lingering in the Shadows...

We have an important announcement! Tomorrow we will present the official cover art for Ghost of Thornton Hall!! Come back to the blog, check our web site, follow us on Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest, and stay tuned to see the art that we have been working hard to finish and have been anxious to show you! (It was finished last night and we presented it to the entire office earlier today).

This is me getting into the GTH spirit:

Psst! Twitter Quote Contest is going on today!
~Little Jackalope~

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Nancy Drew Diaries

I have been a Nancy Drew reader since I was seven years old, and have only recently completed my classic Nancy Drew collection. Many of us fondly remember reading the classic yellow hard-backed books and will always treasure her inspiring adventures that she would take us along on. For a few of us who prefer a more modern girl with technology and serious criminals and more adventures, there are other book series available to enjoy.

This year, Simon & Schuster released a new series for our favorite detective, called the Nancy Drew Diaries. Check them out here!

This weekend I plan on heading over to the bookstore to pick the two titles they have available: Curse of the Atlantic Star and Strangers on a Train. (The next book, Mystery of the Midnight Rider will come out on May 7th, just before we release Ghost of Thornton Hall). I'm already impressed by how many pages these books boast: almost 200 pages! (More than some classic yellow-backs!) They come in paperback, hardcover, and eBook as well.

Well, now you know what I'm doing this weekend!
(Oh! And there is a new poll question to your right.)
And the solution to last weekend's puzzle is this: It's a Book Cipher (also known as the Ottendorf Cipher, but the puzzle refers to the [tag lines for each game] which are the yellow [sentences on each game's page]. The first number is the game, second number is the word, and the last number is the letter in that word. In the end you should discover these words: [lace mask]. Voila!

~Little Jackalope~

Monday, March 11, 2013

Long Time to Wait

We posted this Nancy Drew Moment to our social media sites, and I find this rather funny. From all the teasing we have been doing of Ghost of Thornton Hall, this holds so very true.

Perhaps it would be really nice of us to share more information, huh? Well, I can say we are getting nearer to a big news release this week, so stay tuned! In only a matter of days will you know a tiny bit more information about our scariest game yet (in my opinion).

As for the puzzle, it looks like many of you have figured it out! However, I'll hold off on confirming the answer until tomorrow, so that a few others may have a chance at solving it themselves with this extra clue: [Game pages text]. Start exploring here.

~Little Jackalope~

Friday, March 8, 2013

Weekend Puzzle #188

We have a grand sale going on today in honor of International Women’s day! Check it out:

And this means any Nancy Drew PC/Mac game, either physical or digital (and I know some of you like to buy the boxed games, so now's your chance!)

Also, we interviewed our Art Director, Kyle! (And don't forget to subscribe to our YouTube Channel here.) (~.^)

And now for your weekend pleasure, here's the puzzle for you to solve:
If you need a hint: [yellow]

~Little Jackalope~

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Lunch Adventure: Tacos!

Every once in a while a few elite members of the Her Interactive team dub themselves "The Luncheoning Group" and together they go on adventures. I joined the rather small group today in search of a new, exotic flavor across the sea (technically a lake) for our midday meal.

AKA, we drove over to Seattle to find a Mexican food truck. I consider this an adventure because it is a place I had never been to in a city I rarely visit. After ordering some delicious tacos and tamales, we snuck in to the abandoned building directly behind the truck where we met this amazing room! (And yes, we played a little bit of Foosball after we ate.)

Floorboards are either dangerous or great hiding places...
Since I'm a fan like Nancy is for drafty, old, run-down buildings, I really enjoyed spending time here!
Have you explored old buildings like this before?
Oh, and head's up! Tomorrow we are posting another interview. Stay tuned!
~Little Jackalope~

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Last Design Touches

Today we had a review meeting with the leads and design team. Our designer, Cathy, presented to us the results from our testers' feedback and although it's top secret information, I may venture to say that this game is looking really good!

There were, however, some suggested edits to a few design elements and the story as well as completing the end sequence with more information. We took notes and the artists and production team are going to do their best with implementing these new edits before we reach a final game build...and our final game build deadline is soon approaching! We are now putting the final touches to the game play before Ghost of Thornton Hall begins its next phase of production: creating the discs and boxes and shipping them out. But that's a few weeks away.

~If walls could talk, this closed meeting room would have a lot to say!~

I do believe that we plan on releasing a very tiny bit of news tomorrow. (The cover art is still in creation-mode, so hang on until later!)
~Little Jackalope~

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Hidden Merchandise Items

On the note of merchandise items, I've been working on some new images that will be added to the store for you to design with, they should be up this month. I'm also preparing for Ghost of Thornton Hall images (once the art has been finalized) and today I was sending in requests to Art and Design to consider hiding some of the items into game #29 (which we have already begun working on!!)

My first inspiration came from this T-shirt design in The Captive Curse, as well as the Her Interactive logo on a coffee mug

I happen to own this t-shirt, but if you want to check out a true merchandise collector, see the previous blog post for Rachel's collection!
~Little Jackalope~

Monday, March 4, 2013

A Fan of Nancy Drew Merchandise

I had to share this with everyone: I am a fan of Rachel S.'s Nancy Drew collection! Check out these pictures of all of thecMerchandiseoitemsusheldesigneddand collected!

Thereiaretseveral t-shirts, abpillowcaseeor two, place mat, mouse pad, key chains, ornaments, dog tag, water bottle, ceramic tile art, journal, keepsake box and bookmark!

And it looks like mostyalloofuyoursolved the weekend puzzle! Nice work!iFormthoseaofgyou unfamiliariwith the runes,nthese are [the ancient runes used in The Curse of Blackmoor Manor] whichayou cantdoia search online forothe imagesnto translate?this message: [The Others Are Below] which refers to something in Ghost of Thornton Hall.

~Little Jackalope~ 

Friday, March 1, 2013

We've Gone Red! (And Weekend Puzz #187)

Lookie!! Per yesterday's hint, on our social media sites we've gone GTH red! Because of this game (and where the colors are used) I find this to be a very strong, beautiful combination. The red and lace are meant to represent the beauty of something in the game, the black representing the destruction and charred past, along with the dark night and spooky ghost stories. That's pretty much as far as I can go with describing our color scheme. And by the my own personal opinion...this cover art is going to be the most beautiful, striking, and eerie cover design... EVER. Even better than Shadow at the Water's Edge. Great. I've said too much. The cover art will be revealed later...that's all. I'm done. Excitement now contained.

Until then, learn more about stuff inside the game by solving the weekend puzzle below. For those of you who don't recognize this code, here's your spoiler clue: [runes].

~Little Jackalope~