The time has come: First Access will launch on December 13th! It will be the day that Prosperous Universe becomes acessible to everybody. The current version was already opened to testers of previous alphas on Thursday, who are busy laying the economical groundworks for the imminent launch.
In the week of our soft-launch I had to deal with some last minute issues that turned out to be a lot more complex than I initially thought:
Firstly, we realized that our new managed chat channel feature that automatically creates channels for all members of a corporation or all site owners of a planet was working just fine, but that the respective listings in the COM tile of the UI were completely meaningless to the players. There would simply be a new group chat item in the list with the names of the first few users on the channel, but that’s it. Especially for planet-wide chats that was very confusing. So I added in a feature to actually display names for the channels which took some rewiring because up until now, channel names weren’t a thing.
Secondly, I had to track down an annoying bug that would regularly halt production despite all requirements being met… something that would be a rather unpleasant to have in the release version. Unfortunately, my investigation into the problem uncovered a fundamental design flaw in the population simulation code which took me far too many hours to correct.
Anyway, as all existing alpha testers know, we still made the “release” on the evening of the sixth! Once that was dealt with, I switched back to backend stuff required for the actual release next week for which we will finally enable payment and open registration to everybody.
Last but not least, I spent today working on a much-requested company reset feature. Many people naturally make beginner’s mistakes when first dipping their toe into PrUn’s ice-cold water. But so far, you can’t reset your account to start over. Implementing this is a lot less trivial than it sounds so it’ll take a few more days to complete. You’ll most likely read about that on my next log…
It’s been a very busy week on my end as well, both due to our soft-launch on Thursday the 6th and the upcoming First Access release on Thursday 13th. I’ve been helping our new players out with questions about the game (as the Community Manager) while preparing communication with the press next week (as the PR guy). Another big task has been to write the scripts and shoot the footage for our new tutorial videos. This time, I also documented the whole process and put it all together in a little “behind the scenes” video, which you can watch below.
All that remains to be said before launch is: Keep an eye on your mailbox on Thursday if you subscribed to our newsletter or previously created a Prosperous Universe account. And maybe, just maybe, keep the other eye open for any third-party key-giveaways towards the end of the week.
As always: we’d love to hear what you think: join us on the forums!