Hey everyone! It's been a long time since I last posted an update for The Frontier. I hope you haven't forgotten about it. I have a lot of good news and changes to the game to share with you. Since it'll be too long to fit all into one post, I'm going to split this update in two to make it easier to read.
So first off, why the long silence? If you saw the post I made last month on the Greenlight page, or the Mini Dev Logs from my new blog, then you probably already have a good idea as to what happened. A handful of issues, from falling into a rut trying to revamp the harvesting system, to leaving my job and working as a freelance translator, all came together and ended up pushing me off course. Once I was able to get back to working on The Frontier, I decided to wait until I had a significant chunk of new information to share before posting a new update. I'm sorry it took so long to get here.
The first piece of good news is that The Frontier has finally been Greenlit! I want to give a big thank you to everyone that voted for The Frontier! This game would still be in Greenlight limbo if it wasn't for all of you, so thank you very much.
All in all, it took about a year and three months for The Frontier to get Greenlit. Now that it has though, I can set my sights on the game's release. The goal right now is to release The Frontier in Early Access sometime over the next few months. It's taken a long time to get to this point, so I'm really looking forward to be able to release the game.
Another piece of good news is that I released a new demo (v3) for The Frontier. You can download it from the link below.
*There have been changes to the "res" folder, so please be sure to keep the old ones from previous demos in a separate folder (or delete them) in order to avoid any problems. Please also note that save files from earlier demos will not work with this new version.
This demo version makes it much easier to play the game with the addition of new tutorials and info tips. You can read more about these, along with some other major changes, below. As I mentioned above, the rest of the changes will be in the second part of the update.
Added a new tutorial system.
I replaced the sign posts I added in the previous demo with proper tutorials. These tutorials will teach players about the basic controls of the game, as well as many of its features. This should make the game much more accessible and easier to play.
The game will start off with the first tutorial (left screenshot above), but more will be unlocked as you complete them (right screenshot above). Completing the tutorials will also earn you money and useful items, so although you can ignore them if you like, it's a good idea to complete them as soon as you can.
Added info tips to items and field objects.
To also help make the game easier to play, I have added helpful tips to all items and field objects (see screenshots below). Hovering the mouse over an item in your inventory, or an object in the field, will display useful tips such as what the item does, how to use it, and how to mine a resource. After you get more familiar with the game, feel free to turn these tips off in the Options Menu.
Revamped the harvesting system.
As I mentioned near the top of this update, I had a lot of trouble working on this part. Most of the original ideas I had for this didn't pan out when I implemented them in the game. After a lot of rehashing of ideas, I finally settled on the current form; which includes a less drastic revamp of how harvesting works, plus the three new features below.
So with the old system, you needed to fully cut down a tree before you could harvest any wood from it. This would require a certain amount of hits depending on the resource's rarity and the strength of your tool, and the harvested amount would be random. With the revamped system, each chop will harvest some wood. Resources will spawn with a random amount, and you can harvest one piece or the whole thing. The range of these amounts can go from 1, all the way to 99 (if you're lucky). I think this makes harvesting resources less tedious for the player, as they can just harvest as little or as much as they want. With the addition of secondary resources and growth/decay, this new system also encourages players to better manage their resources.
So in the screenshot above, the bars under the resources are displaying their remaining amounts, and not how many hits are needed (like before). These bars are only displayed for resources that have been harvested, and will disappear if a resource replenishes back to full. Also, if you survey a resource, its amount will be displayed in numbers.
Added secondary resources.
Secondary resources are random items, or coins, that can spawn on stable or growing field objects. Although these aren't as valuable as what you can get from loot chests, they're a nice way to find seeds and fishing bait. If you find an object in the field with a "CHECK" icon, like in the screenshot below, you can press the "UP" key to check it. If you want to increase your chances of coming across secondary resources, it might be a good idea to leave some of each resource remaining (at a stable level) instead of harvesting them completely.
Added growth and decay for resources.
Resources now have three states: growing, stable, and decaying. If a resource is growing, its bar will be green and it'll replenish itself a little each day. If its decaying, its bar will be red and it'll decay each day until it disappears. If a resource is stable, its bar will be blue and it won't grow or decay. Mainly only organic resources can grow or decay, while rocks and metals will always be stable. Farming is particularly affected by this, as your crops can now replenish over time.
Added a surveying system.
This new feature allows you to survey resources in order to get more detailed information about them (as shown below). Surveying a resource involves a small mini-game where you need to press the correct directional keys within a certain amount of time (the amount of keys corresponds with the rarity of the resource). If successful, you'll be able to see the amount of the resource, the minimum amount it requires to grow, and the minimum amount it requires to be stable. You can also earn a survey bonus that increases the amount of the resource (keep an eye out for the different colored arrows).
Well, that's it for the first part of this update. I'll be posting the second part in the next couple of days with the remaining changes. If you have any questions or comments, please post them below.
Also, as I mentioned near the beginning of this post, I started a blog. If you're interested, you can check it out here. I use it to post small updates here and there between these larger updates (as well as other topics not related to The Frontier). I also started a new twitter account to go along with the blog (@nikkusblog), but if you only want to see tweets related to The Frontier, then I recommend you follow me @nikku_nomura instead.
As always, thanks for reading!
it shows nice