It’s been two years since we started on our quest for the MASSIVE CHALICE, and we’re excited to say that our journey is nearly at an end! After many months of designing, building, reading through our early access feedback, and playing the game for hours on end, we’re finally in lockdown. That means the team is in the final stages now; working purely on bug fixing, performance, and polishing things up, in between sending builds off to Microsoft for certification.
With all that in mind then, we’re super happy to announce that MASSIVE CHALICE will be officially leaving early access and launching on June 1st, with the Xbox One version appearing around then!
What’s new for 1.0?
Whilst we’ve got a lot of fixes and polish heading in your direction, version 1.0 won’t just be about making the game shinier, we’ve also got some final features to send your way too.
After listening to lots and lots of useful feedback on the mid to endgame, the team has spent a considerable amount of time rebalancing the game to be more fun, fair, challenging, or punishing, depending on how you look at it. Thanks to everyone who helped us with this fine tuning, we got some invaluable feedback from you guys.
Controller support for the Steam version will also appear in 1.0, enabling you to play from the comfort of your couch with the same polished control scheme and UI navigation as the Xbox One version. We’ve added achievements into the game for all those completists out there, but probably most excitingly of all we’ll also be enabling access to Backer Relics, like the one wielded by this chap below...
Launch Day Teamstream June 1st!
We’ve had a lot of fun with the Teamstreams throughout this project, so one more for the road seemed like the right thing to do. Join us on June 1st for one final MASSIVE CHALICE Teamstream, time to be confirmed, but please do prepare for silliness.
Join us here on launch day: twitch.tv/doublefine
MASSIVE KNOWLEDGE, the series
That’s not all we have in store for launch day though! The 2 Player Productions gang have been filming the team throughout the entire development of Massive Chalice, and have produced a series highlighting the different roles of development on the project.
This series, called MASSIVE KNOWLEDGE, will give viewers a unique insight into the team that made the game, what they do, how they got here, and how you could follow in their games industry footsteps. It will start airing on launch day, huzzah!
Those who backed at a certain level will be getting a super special boxed copy of the game, with a cover designed by Cory Schmitz. We’re hoping for these to go into production later this month, so it’ll be a little while before these arrive on your doorstep, but this is what it’s going to look like.
On the left, we have the normal box. In the middle the special slip case exclusive to Backers. Combining them both creates the special MC Backer box, seen on the right!
The Horns of Birth! A cause for celebration indeed!
Finally, I’m sure you’ll all join us in congratulating Brad and his wife Cate, who are now the proud parents of their first child and heir, Gibson! Along with the team being very much heads down finishing up the game, and the publishing team launching Broken Age and Grim Fandango mobile recently, this is a key reason for the recent quietness on our end! We promise not to shut up for a while now though.
Thanks you guys!
Hey MASSIVE CHALICE backers!
We’re getting close to the finish line! We’ve just launched a huge patch on Steam and the port to the Xbox One is well under way. We’re addressing as much feedback as we can on our way to calling this game FINISHED! :D!
If you haven’t played the game yet here’s a friendly reminder that we’re still live on Steam Early Access!
If you backed the game at $20+ and haven’t received your code for MASSIVE CHALICE then please email us at email@example.com or you can contact Humble directly to get your code!
I’d also like to personally thank you for believing in our tactical strategy game. It’s been a long road and I hope that you’re happy with the results! The 1.0 version of MASSIVE CHALICE will be shipping soon and I’ll stop writing these and we’ll stop doing Teamstreams and things will go back to normal. It’s been an unbelievable experience and I just want to say thanks for your support. It means the world to me! :D!
State of the Game
We just launched patch 0.96 “Cradles & Cradles” a few days ago. Here’s a full list of patch notes!
There are some great changes in there but I’ll go over some highlights real quick! :D!
BABIES (and kids)
We found it pretty depressing to go to the hero info screen to check out your baby hero and see a BLANK WALL. So we made a cute baby model to represent the hero from ages 0-2. We also have a kid model that represents the kid from 3-15. It’s not super realistic but it gets the job done! :D!
Advanced Cadence Upgrades
We got some feedback that the Advanced Cadence were not as interesting as they could be. They’re just statistical improvements and the game can get a bit stale in the back half. This was really great feedback!
We added a small new ability to the Advanced version of each of the 7 Cadence Pawns. My favorite is the Advanced Lapse’s ability to put all of a hero’s skills on cooldown! This can really throw a monkey wrench into your well laid plans. :D!
We also have a new art treatment for each of the Advanced enemies to make you feel like they’ve really been upgraded when they return!
XP and Relic Adjustments
MASSIVE CHALICE is pretty tough at the beginning, but once you get your Keeps setup and you’ve researched a couple of key items you can kind of cruise through those last 150 years. We’ve adjusted the XP curve to make it more difficult to get a hero to level 10, and we’ve also made it harder to generate Relics and level them up. This should lead to a much more satisfying back half of the game where your struggle should continue all the way to the end.
Here’s an image of the old Relic XP curve vs. the new one. Note that this will most likely be 100% meaningless to you unless you’ve spent a ton of time with the game! :D!
To counterbalance the XP and Relic changes we’ve added some new options in the tech tree for class training. You can spend time on a research project to give all heroes of a certain class a significant damage buff. This can really help you keep pace with the enemies now that your heroes are going to be at a slightly lower level!
Note that all of these changes are LIVE right now in patch 0.96 on Steam. Check it out! :D!
We’re continuing to jam on controller support. There are a ton of screens in the game and it’s taking some time to get it right, but we want to make sure that the game plays really well with the controller. In particular Chad and Silvio have been making sure that the PC version can smoothly go from the mouse and keyboard controls to the controller and back based on the last input device you touched. It’s pretty slick! :D!
Ok this one’s small but it gave me a sweet opportunity to make a little animated gif and put it in here. We have a new icon that pops up when you save your game (or when the game saves automatically during an IRON Mode run!).
Xbox One Port
The port is cruising along! Here’s a picture of Lead QA guy Tony playing the game on the Xbox One! :D!
We’ve been hard at work jamming 28 Achievements into the game! Achievements are a requirement for the Xbox One version of the game, but we’ll definitely be including them in the Steam version as well!
Teamstream #32 Friday March 27th!
Teamstream #32 is set for this Friday March 27th at 4pm Pacific. We’re going to play through MASSIVE CHALICE exclusively with a controller, talk about Achievements, and discuss how the balancing is going! Come join us at twitch.tv/doublefine if you can! :D!
Pillars of Eternity!
If you’re a fan of old school RPG’s, our friends over at Obsidian Entertainment are about to unleash their spiritual successor to Baldur’s Gate! Check out the results of the highly successful Project Eternity crowdfunding campaign when Pillars of Eternity launches on Steam 3/26/15! (That’s today!)
Share Your Feedback! Report Bugs! Get Involved!
Make sure to check out the official bug forum here - http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewforum/76/. That’s the place to check if a bug you’re experiencing has already been reported or to report a bug of your own. And if there’s anything you want to talk about MASSIVE CHALICE in general, feel free to come to the MASSIVE CHALICE FORUMS and start a discussion! In case you can’t make our live broadcasts you can find all our Twitch streams on the Double Fine YouTube channel here. Thanks for supporting MASSIVE CHALICE!
Brad and the MASSIVE CHALICE team! :D!
Hey MASSIVE CHALICE backers!
It’s 2015 and we’re coming down the home stretch! Thanks so much for all of the feedback that you guys have been giving us on the forums. It’s been really helpful and the game is in much better shape because of it. :D!
State of the Game
We’re fixing bugs, optimizing the game, and adding new features on our way to 1.0! We’re still looking on track to complete the game in the spring - just a few months away. Here’s a look at some of the new things that are coming in the next patch! :D!
Right now we consider the current difficulty to be “Normal.” Ok it’s actually pretty difficult, but we want the game to serve up a challenge even on the standard difficulty and be known as a generally difficult game. We think the game is a lot better when you have to earn your victories over the Cadence and you’re not just cake-walking through it!
That being said we totally recognize that the game can be pretty brutal for new players. So the new Easy mode will really help this out. Here are the stats that we’re modifying:
- Enemy Health - easier to take down!
- Enemy Evasion - easier to hit!
- Enemy Damage - less punishing for getting your heroes smacked in the face!
- Hero XP Level Requirements - easier to level up!
- Research Times - easier to unlock tech!
We've also introduced a Hard mode for our seasoned players. That’s probably you if you’re reading this? :D We modify the same variables in the list above but we just tweak them in the other direction to make the game even more brutal.
Hard mode also features one additional savage twist. Your strategy map will start with 5 randomized corruption strikes already applied to your outside regions. We’re hoping that this challenge really forces people to come up with some new, optimal strategies! :D!
Plenty of gamers “scum save” their way through strategy games. For those unfamiliar, this process involves reloading an old save game every time you make a mistake in order to ensure your success. This is fine as long as you’re still having fun, but some players just can't help themselves from reloading every time. They never end up trying to live with their mistakes and this can drain significant fun out of the game!
In order to battle this we’re introducing an IRON Mode into the game. If you start a new game with this setting you’ll only have ONE save file for that entire run. After every one of your decisions, whether that’s a Regent appointment, a marriage, or a move on the tactical battlefield, your old save game will be overwritten with the results of that decision. There’s no going back! You’ll have to live with every mistake, miss, and especially those errant Alchemist flasks! :D
We’re not the first strategy game to include this feature, but it feels especially at-home in MASSIVE CHALICE. The game’s all about long-term consequences and with the IRON Mode you’ll really be locked in. Give it a shot in the next patch and give us some feedback!
MASSIVE CHALICE can be pretty daunting for new players. If you've been following Teamstreams then you've probably figured out how to play, but if you’re a brand new player that didn't even know about the Kickstarter it can be pretty tough! We've been working on a simple Tutorial during the first tactical battle that will help you learn the controls and the basics of the game. It’s not quite finished but we thought we’d get it out to you guys to get some feedback on it before we polish it off.
We’re also including a new “Enable Tutorial” checkbox on the New Game screen that you can use to turn off this amazingly helpful walkthrough at the beginning of the game if you’re an experienced player!
Programmer Silvio Terra has made some stunning improvements to the Timeline. Multiple events now stack up on the timeline into what we call a “multi-event.” You can click on a multi-event to expand it and investigate all of the individual events that happened around the same time. We have a lot of things that tend to happen on the same day (for example at the very beginning of the game you’ll usually have a tactical victory, a Regent appointment, and a marriage all on the first day!). This new system allows you to see all of the details of your history.
We've also put in the ability to pan the timeline left and right by using a left click drag. This is incredibly useful for referencing things that happened a long time ago. You can also zoom the timeline in and out using the mousewheel to get a better look at things. It’s pretty useful when you’re trying to find a specific event, and it’s also just really awesome to zoom all the way out and see your entire 300 year run on the screen at the same time! :D!
Controller Support Preview
We’re going through every screen in the game and tweaking them out so that they can support a controller. This is key for the forthcoming Xbox One port, but it will also transfer right over to the PC build so that you can enjoy MASSIVE CHALICE in Big Picture Mode! :D
Brad’s not exactly an artist, but you can see what his quick mockups look like here. MASSIVE CHALICE has a TON of UI so it’s going to take us a while to grind through it, but we’ll get there! :D!
Teamstream #31 Friday February 6th!
We've been away from the stream for a bit but we’re coming back with a new one on Friday February 6th at 4pm Pacific. We’re going to start a brand new Hard IRON run on stream and play for a bit… probably until our first team wipe. That might be sooner than you think, so tune in at www.twitch.tv/doublefine if you can! :D!
Share Your Feedback! Report Bugs! Get Involved!
Make sure to check out the official bug forum here (http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewforum/76/). That’s the place to check if a bug you’re experiencing has already been reported or to report a bug of your own. And if there’s anything you want to talk about MASSIVE CHALICE in general, feel free to come to the MASSIVE CHALICE FORUMS and start a discussion! In case you can’t make our live broadcasts you can find all our Twitch streams on the Double Fine YouTube channel.
Thanks for supporting MASSIVE CHALICE!
Brad and the MASSIVE CHALICE team! :D!