Hello everyone! I hope you all enjoyed the holidays as much as we did!
It’s been a while since my last news update, but this is by no means a sign that development has slowed, on the contrary, the game is coming along swimmingly. I’ve whipped up a passable GUI system that will enable the player to navigate through the game (which is still a bit shallow, but it is deepening). The battles are really shaping up nicely. I wanted them to be exciting, filled with fast paced action and require players to make fast tactical decisions that actually effect the outcome of the engagement, in this I feel I have ‘almost’ succeeded, the actual battle ‘numbers’ will require a great deal of play-testing to balance properly. And that very point brings me to the next significant stage in development;
Public testing, the most exciting stage of development, the stage where all the malcontented ingrates who (somehow) managed to stumble upon your game wail and moan about how awful it is while subsequently spending all their free time playing it. ;) Or so every developer hopes...
I hope to have a working Public Test build released sometime around the end of January or the beginning of February, when I’m satisfied with the general state of the engine and flow of the gameplay I’ll expand the game (adding in many more buildings and units) and release a Premium version which must be purchased. Until that time, the Public Testing version (or Demo, as it will be called) will be updated with new builds ultimately including the entire first tier of structures for the player to build (out of a planned total of 4 tiers that will be in the Premium version) which will enable the player to utilize the various units and abilities granted by those structures. The Demo will also include (ultimately) a lesser variety of enemy units than the full game, and although the enemy Citadel (the player’s ultimate goal) will be present on the map they will be unable to attack and conquer it, actually ending the game is a ‘Premium only’ feature. At this point I must say; though this is the goal I’m aiming for at this time, all this is to be considered a ‘rough plan’ or ‘basic outline’, I may change any or all of the plan depending on circumstances, time constraints, adjustments in response to feedback, or whatever, one can never foresee what the future will hold, and it’s best not to make plans that can’t take advantage of changing environments or avoid hidden pitfalls.
With all that being said, I’d like to share with you all a few more details on the units that can currently be recruited, the Peasant, the Grunt, the Slinger, and the Mystic.
As stated earlier, Peasants are vital to the economy of your settlement, they also provide some much needed muscle in the early stages of the game as the player begins to carve away at enemy territory. They have mediocre health and pathetic attack and defense values, but they do possess one vital ability that can be cast each time the cooldown runs out; Forage. Forage is used by Peasants in any of the Support positions on the field (behind the Frontline), during this time they are not actually in harms way so they have to opportunity to forage for special herbs and berries that instantly restore some hit points to the unit in front of them, making them the only unit currently implemented that has any healing abilities.
This is the first (and for now the only) unit meant to hold a position in the Frontline, they have mediocre health, and fair attack and defense. Grunts also possess an invaluable ability (especially when outclassed by the enemy opposing them on the field) called Pike Wall, raising their spears and standing in tight formation, they turn the enemies aggression back at them, causing additional damage based on the attack value of the opposing unit for the duration of the ability, it does however have a fairly long cooldown.
A cheap ranged unit that will turn the tide of battle in your favor swiftly if deployed correctly, but they are actually weaker than Peasants in melee combat so are best kept out of harms way. When any ranged unit (such as a Slinger) is deployed in Support of the Frontline, they add their attack value to the unit in front of them making that position a force to be reckoned with (especially if the Frontline unit has a high defense value). Slingers also possess an excellent ability custom made for taking out enemy ranged units: Barrage. This ability deals a set, undefendable amount of damage to the opposing enemy Support unit, bypassing the enemy Frontline. And there’s more! Should a Slinger find themselves caught in the Frontline they can use the Skirmish ability to temporarily become invulnerable (for a very short while, and it has a long cooldown) to give reinforcements time to relieve them.
A powerful early unit that makes use of the rare Crystal deposits scattered throughout the world, these caster units have pathetic health, no defense, but a punishing amount of attack power, they are ranged units that should always be kept safely in Support behind units that can withstand some punishment before falling (like Grunts). They also have a nasty ability that will cause light damage to each and every enemy unit in the field every time it is cast. Ouch.
Ultimately, I may add Ammo and Mana to these abilities to prevent spamming to severely, or considering the short life expectancy of the units during battle, I might not. Only time spent playing~ erm, play’testing’, will determine the many ‘ifs’ and ‘maybes’ of a soundly balanced game, which is always a joy to play.
Well I think that just about wraps up this article, thanks for reading and I look forward to hearing any feedback you might have, and I hope this coming year proves to be a happy one for you all.
Until next time,