Funded! This project was successfully funded on October 6, 2012.

Update #46

Early alpha release phases.

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Hey,

It's that time again for another update as Alpha 1 nears. If you have already emailed me you will be playing Arakion before Alpha 2.  However it has been brought to my attention that a high tier backer paid for the privilege of having access before anyone else so if you're below "The Fae" you'll have about one more week to wait before jumping in.

To compensate, we will be extending Alpha 1's duration for ~a week as well as moving Alpha 1 initial release to this coming Monday. (black Friday is a terrible time to let the majority of Alpha players in). So Alpha 1A begins on 25th Alpha 1B likely the 2nd. 

We're extremely excited to get everyone playing this game and can't wait to hear feedback from you guys. If you have already sent an email to me you can expect a reply this weekend with more specific information regarding Alpha 1.

Speaking of feedback, we're currently working on some door lock/quick puzzle mechanics. The question is, what mechanics have you liked in previous games that you would like to potentially see in Arakion.  We have short tower defense, small math puzzles, radial clock lock and a few others but we'd like to implement many more and are looking for suggestions. (example Skyrims lockpick)

So if any of you have ideas you'd like to see in the game just toss them in the comments below.

To the many upcoming alpha players:

We will be launching a private alpha thread on the forums. Please go there for any technical or gameplay issues you may have as well as to report any bugs you encounter. Please do not talk about alpha outside of these forums as everyone will be signing an NDA. Your feedback is extremely important to us so be sure to stay active on the forums.

That's it for today, I can't wait for everyone to begin playing!

-Chris

Paweł K., Jörn Huxhorn, and 1 more person like this update.

Comments

    1. Tree-ent-backer.small

      Creator Avery Campbell on December 2

      Yup! Looking forward to seeing the game in action, even in very early form.

    2. Missing_small

      Creator James Sablatura on December 2

      Anyone else excited about the alpha coming out today? I know I am. Been looking forward to this for a while......

    3. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Eero Elvisto on November 24

      Cool artwork!

      Am looking forward to seeing the game.

      What I'd love most would be creative customization when it comes to decorating houses and the like. A system where you can freely mess around a bit and make your town's architecture your own. Or at least change it in ways and with much creative variety. And it shouldn't only be cosmetic. Maybe I'm thinking a bit too imaginatively - but I'd love it if in some phase of the game some giant or another comes to the gates of your town, asking you a sphinx-like question or asking about your town. If it likes how the town looks, it will maybe reward you. It could be aggressive though. Then more stuff invested into building up the town can make the giant slower in his destruction (he'll have to level more, and that you'd have defenses and traps).

      Damn, I do let my imagination go adrift too much. Basically, I'd like to see random events that would be original, and quite random in their outcome, but would also have different outcomes based on usually meaningless customization-choices.

      Also, saves. Dark Souls and FTL-like "hardcore" games I love best - yet for an Arakion-type of game this hasn't been done before much - and I guess checkpoints in any kind of progress would be fine. Tho losses in experience after death is a swell idea - and getting it back through a one-time "second chance" challenge would also be great.

      As to "losing" in challenges and puzzles - getting the so-called short straw should not make you reload a game, but would rather give you something of a different kind than winning. Yet something less useful. For example - a timed puzzle. If you don't get it, something interesting (like a different and interesting animation or text) happens but you don't get the items or skillpoints. Yet you do get some experience. "Losing" could also easily incur a penalty.

      Also, think FTL-dialogues. Lots of choices you can't really expect. Based on your personal crew, outfit, skills, deeds etc. So-called "blue choices". Some areas that are really hard to get to and require luck. Randomization that will make every experience a unique one.

      Resources. People love FTL-like games for resource-management. You invest in something, choosing from a vast choice of tough choices, yet there's some logic to the choice, regarding its effectiveness and what you'd like to *happen* in the game. Also, money. There should be many different resources functioning in trade and having multiple purposes. (in FTL at some points you can trade in rockets, in others you'll need drones for a quest that'll give you fuel etc). Money *should* have value. Another easy way besides having variety in investment options, is having some sort of always potentially profitable unceasing option, like enchantment. Torchlight is a bit too simplistic, yet serves as a good example.

      Actually, the most loved aspect in many a game is its unpredictibility. This means functional and quite meaningful random events and a somewhat luck-based world. Some people could complain,but they'll love it nontheless, if done well (like FTL).

      Ok, that's it for today. :P

    4. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Scott on November 22

      My comment was supposed to be pointed @Miles. A little brain fried today. Did google a quick video of the lock picking in Return to Krondor. Even watching the video I don't totaly remember how the mechanic worked. But it had multiple zones on the chest, including traps and different lock picking tools.

    5. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Scott on November 22

      @Christian - I am in the same boat. As soon as I saw lock picking mentioned I immediately thought of return to krondor. Then I realized that I can't remember a thing about how it worked. I'm going to have to google it now.

    6. Personnel%20profile%20picture.small

      Creator Chris Taylor on November 22

      @Ryan : It will be on steam eventually but not until after release
      @Cordell :Will have to look into it have never played that game
      @Bradson : That's why we're doing a lot of minigames for these types of things, that way there is enough variety so you shouldn't get bored for a while
      @Cursed : haha... yeah standing for 20 seconds might be a bit overkill but we can certainly implement stuff like that.

    7. Missing_small

      Creator Ryan on November 21

      Maybe I missed this in a past update but is there going to be any attempt to get on Steam?

    8. Missing_small

      Creator cordell melgaard on November 21

      The mechanics in the mobile game "The Room" are awesome. Basically a key that can be rotated at different angles to fit into multiple locks. I like multi-use devices, otherwise you feel like you are carrying around those keys for nothing.

    9. Missing_small

      Creator Bradson Goldie on November 21

      Skyrim's lockpicking is... not awful, but it is a chore. I eventually installed Lockpick pro just so it would be over faster. In Fallout 3 I get my lockpicking skill to 100 and then just try to force it. I just quick save/load before incase I fail.

      It's hard to make one puzzle element that is engaging enough for me to want to do it a hundred times. It might be worthwhile to break doors down in some kind of categories (difficulty, region, color, element, whatever) and have each category use it's own kind of lock. Or the same puzzle with it's own unique verbs.

      Alternately, give me a skill to force locks after I invest in the skill enough.

    10. Missing_small

      Creator cursedseishi on November 21

      For door puzzles, I've actually really liked some of Legend of Grimrock's door tricks. I haven't had a chance to really finish the game (and I kick myself each day for it, it's great!), but one had a slightly vague and cryptic note to stare death in the face (or the like, I'm very roughly paraphrasing here). There was a face nearby, and if you stood there long enough the door opened and it revealed a sideroom as well as enemies.

      I'd say have fun with it. Specially if the door is just for some side room with a little extra hidden away in it. Maybe not quite "stand here for 10-20 seconds", unless you totally want to do that, because I'd do that anyways...

    11. Personnel%20profile%20picture.small

      Creator Chris Taylor on November 21

      @Christian: Ahh... haha, yeah I can understand your worry there. We have set it up to be streamlined and non-invasive or time consuming, I probably could have worded it better. I think Sean points out most of the technical points of NDA.
      @Sean: Appreciate your perspective on that.

    12. Manul_profile.small

      Creator Christian Walde on November 21

      > NDA's are pretty common within early alphas and the game industry in general.

      I'm aware, doesn't mean they can't be wasteful. ;)

      But, if it's just an information screen to click through and inform people, that's not a big deal. I thought you meant the real thing, with signing and mailing copies, and lawyer involvement.

      Just be aware that the screen is little more than a polite question! :)

    13. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Sean Hull on November 21

      @Christian: Having recently enforced a NDA for my company, I can tell you that the cost to enforce is minimal. NDA's are typically pretty straight forward, and either you broke it or not. We simply provided proof, and it was done. This one was taken care of in mediation, and they paid a fee that was agreed upon. All said and done, between time and expenses it cost us less than $2k, and the fine they paid us far exceed that amount. I had one two years ago that went to court. It cost more (about $12k when it was all said and done), but they ended up paying us over $80k + the $12k.

      Some of that of course depends how the NDA is written, but long story short, NDAs are cost effective to enforce, no matter what the cost is.

    14. Personnel%20profile%20picture.small

      Creator Chris Taylor on November 21

      @Miles: Will check it out tonight. We have tried to implement a lot of fun small things to help put more life into the game.

      @Christian: NDA's are pretty common within early alphas and the game industry in general. It's there to protect intellectual property and is useful especially for smaller companies. As far as setting it up, you just click accept the first time you launch the game, not hard on us or the users.

      Ours specifically is more geared towards the fact that a lot of people have already asked if they can review their alpha copy or receive an alpha copy to review, we would prefer the game gets reviewed when it's actually released as opposed to an alpha version. I don't think that's asking a lot. Especially for a small company where the initial reviews will be very important.

    15. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Miles Matton on November 21

      My favorite lock picking / trap disarming minigame was the one in Return to Krondor, but it's been so long I've forgotten pretty much all details of it. I just remember that I really really liked it. I played that game more than I would have otherwise just to do more of that minigame.

    16. Manul_profile.small

      Creator Christian Walde on November 21

      > NDA

      Leaving aside that this unintentionally either says a lot about the game, or whichever person made that decision; please consider whether you actually are even remotely in a position to enforce it financially and, keeping that in mind, whether it's worth it to use part of your budget to make the effort of setting the whole NDA thing up.

      Just eyeballing that number here in the top right, it doesn't seem to me like anyone would have to fear anything about breaking NDA.

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