The Kickstarter campaign is a success, very happy about that (understatement). I plan on creating a very detailed write up of the process so I won’t go into it here.
This week I’ve started working towards iter 17. Feels good to get back to development. Post Kickstarter – heading towards release and Kickstarter Beta – there are a lot of aspects to work on and consider timing/prioritizing. I chose to work on modifying Tactical mode interface a bit prior to using funds to overhaul the 2D interface visuals via a “selection camera/display.” The change is pretty neat and I think will do much to help out the initial – what the hell is this – aspect of Tactical mode and make it overall better for veterans as well. I tweaked an over sight that allowed building ships of different factions in bases – eg: Karakum could build Bonnies and Intrepids. Then I quickly added a unit cap and after that I worked on the unlock system, which is something I’ve been thinking about ever since I added instant action and the battle editor.
So that we are on the same page – the unlock system is a way not to “spoil” the game as well as a sort of a “game within a game.” When I added the battle editor all objects were available for the player (and me) to add to a map to play. This spoils the game since you could add the final boss to play right off the start (I limited this via not adding every ship to the release). But since I want the player to create cool maps and battles I need a way to unlock the final boss (and other ships/stations/bases/etc in between) – just after the player encounters it through playing the game
The unlock system is going well and I’m nearly done with it, but it is a bit of a slog since it is fairly easy to do, kind of boring and at the same time requires a decent amount of thought. This comes into play because there are many occasions where I want a unit/object to be unlocked (via research, via building, via combat) and there are two levels to the unlock – addable via the battle editor and playable when added via the battle editor.
While working on the unlock system – I also “enhanced” maps created via the battle editor – so that unlocked ships and platforms are now build-able/launch-able out of the asteroid bases and shipyard stations. So if you researched a Shipyard platform via playing the main game, it will be unlocked in a map made via the battle editor and thus an asteroid base can build it in that mode. Meaning that you can create your own custom sandboxes that much better now.
The goal for the next week is to finish up the unlock system and begin working on the story to give the Beta backers something new to play when Beta hits. Then shortly after the next week to start considering/implementing a method on how to distribute the Beta version to the Kickstarter backers. Once Beta is released the plan is to focus a portion of the month between Beta version releases on story additions and a portion on game engine enhancements and logic. Continue that until release while also using the funds from Kickstarter on purchasing art assets.