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Defense Grid set the standard for tower defense games and now we're giving you the power to make Defense Grid 2 real for everyone.
6,291 backers pledged $271,726 to help bring this project to life.

Making Defense Grid 2: Fun, PAX East, Beta & Release Dates, and Art books too!

Posted by Hidden Path Entertainment, AMD & Razer (Creator)

Hi Team,

We've been working hard to get our Defense Grid 2 game features complete and make sure the core gameplay is the most fun it can possibly be. In fact, if you've been following the embedded reporting work of Russ Pitts at Polygon, he just released a new article a couple of days ago where he witnessed and recounts one of the many days where we are feverishly working to make sure this game lives up to your expectations. 

DG2 Leads Meeting via Polygon (Russ Pitts)
DG2 Leads Meeting via Polygon (Russ Pitts)

To see the sixth in-depth report on Making Defense Grid 2, click here 

To go to the index of all the reports in this unprecedented Polygon series, click here 

PAX East

Also – big news flash. For those of you attending PAX East in Boston on Sunday, April 13th, Polygon Journalist Russ Pitts and Hidden Path DG2 Executive Producer Jeff Pobst will be making a dual appearance on stage at 11am in the Condor Theatre. Jeff might talk about what it is like to have a reporter watching your every move (and mistake) while you develop a new game with no say whatsoever in what Russ writes. Meanwhile Russ might give you additional insight into that crazy cast of characters that you read about who are making the game. Is Lex Story really like that? Does John Daud really worry about the details so much? You'll also get the opportunity to ask questions, so if you want to know more about the making of Defense Grid 2, here's a great opportunity.

Now some more big news, this time on product dates!

Beta Date

As you know we had originally hoped to do a multiplayer and feature beta back in November, but due to the multiplayer engine status, some low level engine rework, and new Steam features that we are taking on, we have been delayed on doing a beta significantly. 

We've kept busy working on other things while waiting for the APIs needed, so development progress has been good, but we're now happy to report that we have made progress on all beta fronts and have received most of the APIs we were looking to get from our partners at Steam. With that work now back underway again, we're expecting to begin the Defense Grid 2 beta process in either late April or early May!  We're looking forward to seeing you online then.

Release Date

Also, by now you also have seen the news that we have partnered with 505 Games to release Defense Grid 2 as planned on Steam (Windows, Mac, Linux) and also now on Xbox One & PlayStation 4. This is being accomplished both by adding some additional members to the team, and by adding some additional time to the development process for the existing team. 

We plan on simultaneously shipping Defense Grid 2 on all the platforms above, and to do that, we're now targeting a release in Fall 2014 which means the game release will fall outside of our original planned window of being in the first half of this year, but will not be far behind that.

Art Books 

For those backers whose pledges included bound art books for the first series and the second series, we're happy to let you know that all of the hardcover art books for the first Defense Grid series have been printed, bound, and mailed out to their new owners! 

Thank you so much for your generous support of the Defense Grid franchise! The DG2 art books will follow sometime after the launch of DG2 once we've had time to pull all the art for DG2 together and get it in book ready form.  That process took much longer than expected on the first art book, so we'll see if we can utilize that experience to help us make the second one more quickly. 

For those backers whose pledges include the pdf file of the art book that was used to print the books, your email with the link to download the large pdf file will be sent out starting today. Keep an eye out as sometimes the emails from us end up in your spam filter or elsewhere deep inside the depths of your email clients.

So that’s news at this hour. We know you are waiting to play a great game, and we're working hard to get you that great game as soon as is possible. We also want it to go faster, but we know that it being fun and solid is the most important thing, and we're committed to getting you a great Defense Grid 2!

Thanks so much for your support!

The Hidden Path Team 

Justin Passmore, Kshitij Sobti, and 8 more people like this update.


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    1. Missing avatar

      Barry Drennan on

      The Polygon article was fascinating, but I think you guys have a fundamental misunderstanding concerning this whole "resource drip" thing. Michael Austin's assertion that people would get left behind using the old "kill mobs for resources, plus resource interest" if they didn't figure out how to conserve their resources may be true, but his solution - make the game "easy mode" by giving a fixed-rate drip - was a hamfisted way of addressing the issue.

      Look at how Valve addresses their "on-the-job training" in the early levels of games like Portal 2. They playtest, look for areas where people get confused, and then alter the flow of the level to help people see for themselves what they're supposed to do, rather than removing basic aspects of gameplay to make things easier for unskilled players but boring for skilled players.

      So while bonus resources for killing an entire wave is an interesting idea, removing resource interest and/or the individual resources-per-kill is not. Instead, what you want to do is hang a lantern on the idea of resource interest. One easy way is to introduce a storyline element (such as an underground mining facility, resource replication factory, etc.) that explains resource interest in an exciting way, through in-game dialogue that explains, in-character, the value of (1) not building out your defenses too fast up-front and (2) making sure that the cores stay in the housing.

      You could reinforce this in an early early level, by finely tuning it so that when the player minimizes their buildup for an easy first wave (say, a wave easy enough to beat with a single gun tower), they gain enough resources through interest so that they can build out enough to take on a challenging second wave. But if they overbuild for the first wave, they'll get punished for the second wave because they'll lack a needed gun tower, thus allowing the baddies to reach the housing and/or run away with some cores - and the game should point this out to the player through specific dialogue in that level, rather than just having the generic "Get back our cores!" notes. (The game should also emphasize at this point the fine line between saving up during easy waves and going more all-out for tough waves.)

      So, in other words, this is a vote in favor of resource interest, because it's a good mechanic that forces the player to be careful with their resources if they want to succeed at challenge levels and such. The fun is in having to walk that fine line, backing up by a checkpoint or two if you over- or underbuilt, and trying a different solution.

      Thanks for reading! And thanks for being so open with Russ Pitts on this project. I'm really looking forward to it! :D

    2. Hidden Path Entertainment, AMD & Razer Creator on

      @Paul - only the Steam versions. Steam provides us codes upon request. PS4 and Xbox One don't do that, they will sell us codes, but not give us the codes, an option we can't afford. If that changes and Xbox One or PS4 provide us codes at no cost, we will share those codes with our backers, but I am not expecting that to happen. We will ask though.

      @Draken - so sorry to hear that, thank you for your service!

      @Chris Thanks much for following us too - players are the reasons we get to make games!

    3. Missing avatar

      Chris Webster on

      I just wanted to thank the DG2 team and everyone who is/was a part of this game and it's production, for allowing Polygon to be there for the ride. That multi-part editorial/story/thing has been just a fascinating trip behind the scenes, and gives me such appreciation for everything that happens to get a game to release. Thank you thank you.

    4. Draken Stark on

      Seems like I may be off to basic training just as the beta begins. Seems I won't be able to get that head start on the race gametype I wanted to make within the editor, assuming the power to do so is in it. With what I'll be going to training for I may also be gone for just under a year. *sad face*

    5. Paul on

      Will we get access to the platform versions, or computers only?

    6. Hidden Path Entertainment, AMD & Razer Creator on

      Steam isn't on the consoles any more - there was an attempt on a couple of Valve titles on PS3, but that experiment ended, so the PS4 & Xbox One titles are completely separate from Steam. As for the talk at PAX East being recorded, I don't know - I'll enquire.

    7. Paul on

      Sweet update. Very exciting that DG2 is going out on the platforms as well. I knew PS4 supported Steam, does the Xbox One as well?

    8. Missing avatar


      Thanks for the update, guys! I don't suppose that thing at PAX East is going to be recorded? It sounds awesome and I'd love to see what happens.