After months of working towards the next release on different fronts, the team is finally piecing it all together: game design, technical implementation, distribution methods, learning resources etc. So far, it all seems to fall into place nicely.
I spent a big chunk of my time this week on refining the Material Editor. That’s the internal tool we design Prosperous Universe’s world, material and resources with. The actual game design is done by Alex, but as he progresses, more and more issues and change requests surface.
Alex designed a lot of items that won’t be in the game in the next alpha (like player-built space stations, ship parts and so on), so he has a better perspective on where we’re going with the tech tree. Of course we don’t want these items to be exported and therefore visible in the game since they’d be useless at that point and only add confusion. So I added some simple tools to exclude materials, buildings and production recipes from being exported.
Alex also finished the new starting profiles players can choose when setting up their company and I integrated them into the game. We will have at least five such profiles. Compared to the profiles from the last test, they will provide more resources and allow to set up a few buildings right away. We will provide descriptions of each of those starting profiles in our wiki.
I picked up where I left last week and wrapped up the majority of the payment and First Access features of the hub. All that’s missing now is content and polish, which I’ll probably leave for the final days before the release in December.
With that out of the way, I switched my attention to the operational setup of the test cluster. A lot of things have changed since I last dealt with the topic and we also had to made a call on which platform we finally want to go with (own bare-metal servers vs. VMs vs. Platform-as-a-Service). Once the decision was made, I started to adjust our setup, build pipeline and documentation to get everything ready for internal testing as early as possible. As of writing this, the new setup wasn’t quite complete yet, but it’s getting there.
I’ve mostly continued creating content for our wiki this week. I had a call with Alex a few days ago and realized that so much has changed in the game’s design and the way players start out, that I’ll need to pretty much completely rework the introductory tutorials, both the written ones and the videos. Believe it or not, this has come as a bit of a surprise to me; a welcome one because a I love the changes themselves, but also a troubling one because it means I have so much more to do before launch than I anticipated. Even though we are a small company, we’re not always in the loop about everything everybody else is doing, since there is very little redundancy, and we only coordinate what’s necessary and at the appropriate times. That’s why we’ve been chipping away on our own respective blocks, and it’s only really all coming together now, as the next big release draws close.
Anyway, I bought a teleprompter this week, which will be a big improvement in my video creation workflow. I’ll show you some WIP footage from the upcoming recording sessions once it’s all set up. Sorry for keeping it brief this week, there’s just so much left to do. Back to work! (:
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