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This post details the work in we at Lights Out Studios put into developing Flickernaut in the week leading up to its alpha release.

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This past week, we strove to make Flickernaut feature-complete by adding more levels, introducing new alien enemies, expanding the game loop to have a more professional feel, and further developing the game’s backstory through dialogue and cutscenes.

The most obvious change to the game you will see in this week’s release is a significantly larger game world, with the addition of two larger, more complex puzzle levels, both in the light dimension and the dark dimension. Previously, players who had built up some skill could beat the game fairly easily within a couple minutes, skipping the side quest to obtain the blue orb without much of a difficulty spike. Now, players are confronted with more challenges that grow in difficulty as they progress, and the reward of obtaining the blue orb will be much starker. Within these new levels, we introduced 2 new enemies: a stealthier alien which periodically pops up to check for intruders and a slow, stalking boss alien in the final level. Thirdly, we expanded our game loop by adding a main menu, start scene, death animation/try again screen, and a final victory scene. Lastly, we further developed Flickernaut’s backstory throughout the game. Cutscenes at the beginning and end of the game should help clarify to players why exactly the astronaut is stranded and looking for ship parts. A few additional instances of dialogue throughout the game fill in other gaps in the backstory.

As we expect this week’s release to finalize the scope of our game’s functionality, we will seek to further improve our game in the coming weeks in response to the player feedback we receive. We have begun collecting analytics which will allow us to make tweaks to difficulty and design to better accommodate players of varying skill levels. We have plans to improve and consolidate our UI to give a more minimal and professional feel throughout. We plan to add more sounds and juicy features, most notably chase-down music for when aliens are hunting the player. And, as we have done every week, we hope to continue to flesh out the backstory a lore for Flickernaut.

As always, we value any and all feedback we receive, and we will take this player feedback into account as we continue to build and improve Flickernaut.

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