Release notes here.
The auto-targeting of player ships, as well as AI ships, is better. Also, balance continues to be majorly improved thanks to RocketAssistedPuffin. Also also, the Nanocaust is better than ever thanks to Badger, and there’s a big laundry list of bugfixes.
I mentioned this last time, but it bears repeating: RocketAssistedPuffin has stepped into a volunteer balancer role, and he is not only looking for feedback, but he’s actively integrating lots of things that other people are suggesting on our forums and Discord, as well as things that he’s finding and coming up with himself. The more feedback the better, for sure.
I should also take this time to point out the thread where you can give feedback to Eric on the upcoming lobby redesign. I have been remiss on not giving that wider visibility.
Late today, I’ve spent a lot of time going through mantis, and I’m not nearly done yet. I have been working on trying to compile a big list of things for my trello to-do list, with some new categories in there. Basically, to get to a point where we can release in Early Access, a few things have to happen:
- First, we have to get things really nice and clean and polished, and with enough features that people get the idea, for a press build. No press build, no previews, no EA launch coverage, and that is bad.
- That has to be out to the press ideally 3+ weeks ahead of a launch of the game into Early Access, or again we simply don’t have time to get good coverage.
- There’s then a list of things that we need to get done during that 3 week period, basically to get full polish for the initial Early Access launch. At least half of those three weeks should be set aside for just reacting to ongoing bugs and polish that people find, though.
- Then we release to Early Access, and life resumes its normal cycles as we head on towards 1.0 some months later.
If we’re aiming for Early Access in mid-October, then that means that we have to have the press build done in 2.5 to 3.5 weeks at most. Maaaan that feels rushed at this point. I really don’t like that prospect. I’m also not keen on waiting to go to Early Access in January, though. I’m not sure which is worse, in the view of the next half year. The 1.0 build should wind up being the same either way, but how that affects us financially and in terms of reviews and coverage… well, that’s a tough decision at the moment.
It’s super frustrating, because I’m really happy with how things are evolving right now, but there is so much that is evolving that there’s just never enough time for everything. Particularly with our reduced staff, despite the volunteers that we have who are an enormous help. This project is just… well, big. That’s a lot of superlatives for one paragraph. 😉 But seriously, if I just stopped and worked on nothing but art from now until the deadline, I still might not have enough time for just that. The more I think about it…
At any rate, we’ll see what happens. I’m doing my best to be speedy, but new reports come in every day and even if they didn’t I’m not sure I’d have the time to tackle the entire backlog in time. I plan on working on this project for a long time to come, knock on wood, but getting to the point where this is actually purchaseable on storefronts is a continual tug of war right now. Either way, big exciting things are happening. And that’s without any of the procedural ships in there! We’ll see if those maybe get pushed back into Early Access or even later, if they don’t seem really needed.
Lots more to come this week!
The Usual Reminders
Quick reminder of our new Steam Developer Page. If you follow us there, you’ll be notified about any game releases we do.
Also: Would you mind leaving a Steam review for some/any of our games? It doesn’t have to be much more detailed than a thumbs up, but if you like a game we made and want more people to find it, that’s how you make it happen. Reviews make a material difference, and like most indies, we could really use the support.