This week in co-op, we iterated on enemy ship and plane AI and worked on improving the director. We also started work on weather effects and UI. Eugene is building a new co-op level (pictured above) that is coming along nicely.
In other news, the co-op teaser trailer is out! Hope you enjoy it!
Don’t worry, we didn’t die. We just took all your money and blew it on paintball and luxury cruises. Nah, that’s lame. We took your money, and we’re busy putting it to good use developing features that we promised you. Here’s a short list of things we’re currently working on:
Co-Op Mode development is in full swing. Our programmers are busy putting together the AI Director and teaching baby Skynet to fly aeroplanes to destroy you all. It’s starting to look fairly fantastic… as fantastic as flying boxes can be. Flying around in our mossy green temp textured level with boxes flying at you is quite horrific. We hope the experience will have even more heart-pumping action once the art team lends us their time after they finish a trailer of sorts (more on that later). The stuff that’s happening now are all low level features so it’s nothing spectacular to look at. However, gameplay is getting very close and we hope to have a fully playable Co-Op Box Mode for the office in a month or two. We’ll definitely have a pretty version ready for PAX East (more on that later too).
As promised, everyone who pledged their money to us in this Kickstarter campaign will be getting the Co-Op Mode Expansion as a part of their reward at no extra cost. It’s a very substantial piece of content. We’re basically building Left 4 Dead as an expansion as we all know that L4D was its own game. Therefore, everyone who backed us or already has Skirmish Mode will be getting a huge deal on the Co-Op Mode Expansion when it comes out.
The Art team has been very very busy putting together a really sweet looking trailer to formally introduce the world of Guns of Icarus Online to you. You might be asking, “Wait wait wait… I thought we’d get more of the world with Adventure Mode, why is this kind of trailer coming out now?” After some thought, and realizing that we have all this fantastic concept work for the world already, we are putting more world related elements in Co-Op Mode.
I haven’t finalized any of the details for how this will come together just yet so I’m not ready to share but I want everyone to know that we’re trying to get Co-Op Mode to be more than just a drop-in and drop-out kind of game. I want you to care more than just your own character. There will be meta gameplay involved that I hope will be fun and have you hooked. Needless to say, this meta gameplay will have something to do with factions. If Skirmish Mode was a lead-in to Co-Op with basic airship combat, Co-Op Mode will be a lead-in to Adventure Mode will basic factional meta gameplay.
We’re at the world’s end, the near destruction of humanity. Factions rise from the ashes and begin to carve out their stake of the future. The trailer will introduce you to these factions where it’ll be up to you to choose who to support. The Co-Op Mode Expansion will be your first chance to make a difference in the world of Guns of Icarus Online.
We’re slow and we’re sorry. It’s still happening. All physical rewards for Complete Adventure Early Bird #2 and below have been sent out. If you haven’t gotten anything yet and are expecting, please reach out to me and I’ll have to taken care of (firstname.lastname@example.org). We’re getting some wrong addresses or undeliverable packages and are also trying to sort through those as well.
We just got 100 redesigned art books this week and are waiting for a final shipment of t-shirts to come in and we can finally finish all of it very soon. Next time, we’ll use a 3rd party to help us do physical fulfillment since it’s so laborious for us especially when we need to make a game. Again, our apologies for the lengthy delays.
Steam OS/Steam Controller
Howard (CEO, Bubbles) was able to go to the first Steam Dev Days in Seattle a couple of weeks ago. We got a prototype Steam Machine (manufactured by Gigabyte) with Steam OS and a Steam Controller. We’re happy to say that it looks like we’re compatible with Steam OS and Steam Controller right out of the box. We’d like to test with more Steam Machines in the future so we can officially confirm but so far the game runs like butter on Gigabyte’s Steam Machine (latest BRIX computer with Intel i7 integrated graphics) with some of high quality settings on.
The Steam Controller has been the biggest surprise. So far, I really love it. I hate playing FPS with a controller and think it’s the worst thing you can ever do. Y’all with your thumbsticks playing Halo, I have no idea what you’re doing. Thumbs weren’t meant for precision control! However, the trackpads on the Steam Controller is slowly converting me. Ultimately, it reminds me of a trackball mouse—it’ll take some getting used to for FPS but you can totally pull it off and still have a ton of precision. Even though we have the first prototype of the controller, it’s going to make a huge splash and be a part of every PC gamer’s rig. Because the controller maps to arbitrary keyboard keys, it will work with whatever Guns Online command you bind it to. Steam surprised us with a decent default binding too, but I’ve put up my own binding scheme up on Steam for everyone to access if you have a Steam Controller.
PAX East 2014
We’re anxiously awaiting to hear back from indieMEGABOOTH again. They should be getting back to us any day now. Our goal with PAX East 2014 is to bring a playable, and very pretty non-box, build of the Co-Op Mode Expansion. If we’re with indieMEGABOOTH (fingers crossed!) then you’ll be able to hunker down and steer your airship to fight again AI enemies with your friends. However, if we get bad news it doesn’t means we won’t be at PAX. We’ll try to do something. Maybe get floor space. Maybe host something in a hotel room. Either way, we’ll have some presence to people looking at what we’re working on. More details to come.
How to Stalk Us Better
I’ll be honest, we’re not the best at keeping this updated. We haven’t forgotten you at all, though. We’re still fulfilling, we’re still putting your money to good use. However, if you’d like to keep better tabs on us you can find us in a bunch of different ways.
Costume set fulfillment for those who have the Collector's Edition of Adventure Mode have been emailed a survey to choose their sets. Please check your spam folders. Emails should be from email@example.com and the subject "Guns of Icarus Online Adventure Mode KS: Costume Set Fulfillment"
We're sitting on a bunch of physical items but are waiting for many more to arrive. So far, nothing complete can be sent out. Once we get packages completed we'll send them out ASAP. Again, everything is being done by hand and in our own offices so things may take some time. We're taking time out of development to do this so your patience is greatly appreciated.
We've been having a lot of development meetings regarding the factions these past few weeks. That's why you haven't been seeing any more Faction Features or videos lately. What we're trying to do now is make sure that each faction has something you can believe in, something you can latch onto and really rally you to their cause. Each faction will have a very particular idea on how to improve the world that they live in. However, upon closer examination all these solutions aren't as perfect as they might seem.
We want our players to reach a very careful and difficult moral decision when they embark on supporting a faction. By starting the game as a neutral entity, you will be able to explore each of the factions by taking missions for them and gain or lose reputation with them. We're trying to have factions represent a comprehensive list of worldviews so that every player can feel connected to at least one faction. Players will detest at least one faction, too. Of course, not every faction motive or decisions to join a faction will be simply black and white. Nothing is purely gray either. We want the positives and negatives of each faction to build a gradation of moral empathies. Hopefully, based on your own personal experiences and opinions, each player will have a different take on which faction has the right cause.
Some users have also brought up a concern regarding player base. Rest assured that we are building a scalable world that will make each faction feel populated. Some examples include enabling and disabling town nodes based on player size to make the world feel bigger and smaller. Of course, more careful examination will be taken into account when systems are being tested and implemented.
Other than faction and world building, we're working tirelessly in getting a co-op map with AI planes working ASAP. We hope to get something ready in the next few months as we ready up for another round of shows and exhibitions. There are a lot of plane assets going into the project so it'll be very exciting to see these in action, fully and dynamically controlled by the AI.
Thank you for all your patience, especially if you're expecting physical goods. We're spending time in all areas of the project. As you know, there's a lot to do!
P.S. We still get a lot of requests for boarding! So we added an elite jet pack item. Lol jk.