Dev-Diary: 69

Hello!

So since the last update, I’ve been focused on a couple of things. The first, and biggest, is a tutorial! It took some time and effort, but I managed to get a fully-fledged tutorial all set-up! While skippable, the game directs new players into the tutorial first and walks them through the basics on navigation and game mechanics. M.I.S. has a LOT of freedom in what you can do, and there is quite a bit of information to take in constantly, so having a tutorial to help ease new players in was something requested by a lot of testers. Fingers crossed it not only helps new players, but also works consistently!

I’ve also been working on new information panels and other small aesthetic updates. The Station screen now also shows you information about your shield and repair recharge times, as well as which modules your repair functions are operating on. Another, less useful, visual update is intentional visual artifacts! As your station gets ripped apart by Xenos, your screens will slowly fill up with pixel-line cracks. The obstruction is minimal, unless you’re about to completely collapse, but it’s enough to be very slightly annoying, and to show you that you better hurry up and fix things!

I’ve also made a solid handful of balancing tweaks and other bug fixes. The base difficulty has been reduced slightly, and random events are tighter and more accurate to your difficulty level; no more having entire armies spawn on you within the first 15 minutes of gameplay! I’ve still got a number of issues I need to address that have been brought up by testers, but I’m working through them. 🙂

As almost every year, December is a very hectic time for both myself and my family, so I’ve been jumping between project work and personal work a lot more over the past few weeks. As always, I may or may not have an update at the start of the new year, but I will be back at some point in January!

As for my testers, I should have the next stable build up sometime over the next few days! I just want to check a few more bugs out.

And as for everyone, thank you for listening to me ramble for another year! I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season, and as always, all the best~!
^,,^

Dev-Diary: 68

Hey everyone!

So these past two weeks have been interesting. I started closed testing recently, which immediately opened up a world of new bugs, but more importantly a lot of balancing issues. I’ve been a lot less focused on coding, and more focused on guiding the testing, as well as starting back up on art assets. I’ve continued work on doing the ship and module visuals (of which there are many of) as well as the overlay visuals. Below here, you can see what I mean by ‘overlay’; small icons and other visuals to assist in the presentation of information. I’m trying to diversify and simplify the information you receive on your screens, while also maintaining the core aesthetic.

Testing has revealed a few things to me, one of which is balancing; some events are randomly scaled too high and some boss-entities are too tough for when you fight them. This is fantastic feedback and is something that will be balanced out to hopefully have a smoother experience without sacrificing too much challenge. Another dominant request has been to include a tutorial; the nature of the game unfortunately means there is a lot the player is in control of and a simple ‘game-manual’ does not seem to be enough for some people, understandably so. Unfortunately, from the perspective of the developer, I have a rather detailed knowledge of how everything should go, but processes and mechanics will almost certainly not come as naturally to most players. I try to account for this as much as possible, but without actual player’s opinions I can’t know for sure where I am lacking. I had originally considered the idea of a tutorial a few months ago though had shelved it because I wasn’t sure how to implement it. However, a recent update I did which allowed the player to select different starting stations, and the update I did to the event system, may now allow a simple way to approach this. Oh yeah! Also I did an update where you can now unlock and play as different stations, each with pros, cons, and differing strategies!

Currently, my two main up-coming goals are to get a tutorial established and to set-up all the new overlay icons, as well as a handful of smaller patches and updates. There are numerous bugs which need to be tackled!

That’s it from me for now. Till next time, all the best~!
^,,^