State of the Game and Planned Demo
It's been over two months since I published the last developers log. This is going to be more of a status update than anything else to give the current state of the game's development, future plans, etc. So prepare for lots of words and not so many pictures--sorry!
Since the last devlog, I managed to get together a private beta and sent it to a small handful of people to get some feedback regarding the new systems in place. I was able to get some seriously useful information and I really appreciate everyone's assistance in the matter. It was originally my intent to move this private beta into a public beta after fixing the issues that the testers ran into.
However, long story short, and the bad news--the game needs some more time "in the oven" before it is ready for a public demo release and Kickstarter campaign. I had originally planned to do it around September of this year, but it's going to be more like spring of 2021 at the current pace.
A couple key points that lead to this delay:
- The battle system, while unique and engaging...just isn't there yet. The AI is largely uninteresting and there are a few mechanics that still need improvement. It is my intent to code a new system for AI management and to add a couple more unique mechanics that are sure to give battles some serious flavor.
- Pixel movement is good, but buggy. It feels better than grid movement but there are still annoying clipping issues in places that need to be fixed. Some parts will just need to be entirely rewritten. This is another huge undertaking from a coding perspective that will take me some time.
- The introduction sequence pacing is poor, and the first dungeon is just too damn long. So, a new, smaller dungeon will be designed and the sequence shortened to make it flow better. The current dungeon will end up being improved and used as the second major dungeon instead due to its length.
- Optimization is still an issue and the game runs poorly on lower spec computers. This will be unacceptable and will lead to a variety of issues at release time, and even with a public demo. MKXP, an open-source version of the RPG Maker XP engine that was famously used by games like To The Moon is my intended solution to this problem. This is again something that is just going to take a huge chunk of time and will lead to what seems like a delay in any "updates", when in reality it's due to everything being done under the hood.
- Overall, there a few more smaller mechanics (Party management, conversation system, adventure log) that need to be added and changed before I proceed with chunking out major content.
TL;DR - There will be few visual updates and no demo in the coming months as I take a step back and focus on the core engine components once more.
I look forward to everyone's support and cannot thank you enough for sticking with the project through all of these setbacks. The hope is that once these major engine components are worked out, adding the actual game content will take significantly less time and will be easier to track visually. -Jaiden
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