There's a huge load of fan-uploaded Frozen Synapse videos on YouTube now, so I'll be starting each post with my recent favourite! Here's a silly one that's been around for a while...
I've just returned from a week off and it's certainly good to be back! I recommend taking a quick break post-crunch / release to any indies out there - it really is actually necessary for keeping your sanity.
Enough of this.
Yesterday, Ian and I ran through some of the things we'll be working on for the next patch. As well as some art tweaks and fixes, we'll be working on some quite difficult under-the-hood stuff.
Two things which need addressing are snipers and the random level generator creating irritating situations: these are a couple of major issues which, when fixed, will really make a big difference to the game. The level gen thing is just going to require lots of tweaking; I'm sure Ian will have fun with the snipers - rebalancing is always a tough one and I don't envy him that!
We'll also be working on a system for cancelling unwanted games, making some changes to the way you GET INTO games, and also putting in better loading notification to avoid some of the frustrations that the menus can cause currently.
That and a huge load of other boring stuff! The time has come where really we need to start attacking bugs and refining things. The next patch should be out at the end of June.
The menus currently need a lot of work - I think we have the resources to do it but we're going to allow quite a lot of complex community activity so making them sane is not a particularly straightforward task. Once we have a good scope for them, it'll be time to do the redesign - stressful but necessary.
During my time off, I brainstormed some of the background narrative stuff which may get used for the single player Campaign. As we're still unsure what form this will take, it's difficult to commit to stuff, but I have a very clear idea of the setting now. Work on that part of the game will commence after August, so there's a bit of a way to go before we get started - I'll be really interested to see what testing throws up.
On the press front, we've been interviewed in the French magazine Canard PC (yes "le canard" is French for duck - this is something that we clearly just have to DEAL WITH) this week, and we also popped up rather unexpectedly on Giant Bomb...take a look!
It's always heartening when the bigger sites give you coverage and we've seen quite a bit of traffic from this which has been most welcome. Destructoid and Kotaku STILL refuse to talk to me, which I'm starting to find increasingly puzzling as we gradually tick other mainstream sites off the list...but there you go!
Yesterday, we entered the PAX 10 - here's hoping we get something out of that. I still feel like we need to make some headway with marketing the game in the US, and that would be a brilliant opportunity. Also, I want an excuse to go to PAX because it looks ace.
There are, currently in the pipeline, two exciting things that I can't talk about yet. One involves music, the other involves the entire future of the game - you'll just have to stay tuned for those.
Ian posted a few stats that we harvested when thinking about game modes...
A lot of people are telling us that they bought the game because a friend recommended it - this is THE BEST thing and I'm really happy about it! Thanks for telling people about us - it's the simplest and most effective way to help us out.