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Post news RSS Development update January 2023

First dev log of 2023 where I talk about how the community and the start of the closed alpha are shaping the development. I am also going to introduce the new main features like audio support, tooltips, new structures and more.

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Welcome to the first update of 2023. This is also a special update because it's the first one after I started closed alpha testing about 3 weeks ago, so let me tell you what happened with that and how things are going.

Closed alpha started

On the 13th of January I released the first alpha build, for Linux and Windows, allowing all the people in the Discord server of the game to try Virtueror out.

So far almost 20 people downloaded the game, which is okay considering the very little gameplay which is fully implemented at the moment. Nonetheless I received some very useful feedback and I found out about some issues that I wasn't aware of.

That allowed me to focus my work for the rest of the month on annoying bugs and most wanted features. Also, because of that, I keep considering the community behind this game the most important asset I could have.

Closed Alpha testing will continue for at least 2-3 months and I am going to release a new build at the end of February.
If you want to be one of the first gamers to try Virtueror join the Discord server of the game as that's where I will share the links to download all the early builds.

Music and sound effects

The main feature for this month is the brand new audio support in the game engine, which now allows me to add music and sound effects to the game.
Unfortunately having this feature fully implemented took more time than I expected, which means I could spend less time on other major features, but at least everything seems to work fine and now I can count on a solid base that should cover most of the game's needs.

At the time of writing I already added several tracks and a couple of sound effects to game, Everything is still to be considered a placeholder for now, but I will try to finalize things in the upcoming months.

I also implemented a first version of the audio settings dialog, which allows to control volumes and to disable music and sound effects.

virtueror audio settings

Tooltips

Another important new feature is support for tooltips in the GUI library of the game engine.

This is something that was suggested as key feature by a playtester and which will help me explain the game a little better before a tutorial is in place.

virtueror tooltips

I will also use tooltips to extend the existing UI, for example showing more information when moving your mouse over the resource bar. That's a classic way of providing more detailed info without cluttering the screen too much.

New structure: Radar Tower

I added a new structure: Radar Tower. It's like a smaller (and cheaper) radar station, but it offers a smaller visibility radius. It can be used to extend visible areas more easily.

virtueror radar tower

New scene elements: Trees

I also added a new scene elements to add more variety yo the maps: trees.

They are not static like other scene elements as they grow and change over time. That should help to make the maps more lively and real.

virtueror trees 01 1280

I am also planning to make the trees expand in the surrounding cells when they reach their last stage, but that's something I am going to implement in the upcoming weeks.

Minor updates

  • New exit dialog
  • New dialog to create a new map in the map editor
  • Game is paused when the window is minimized
  • Fixed several crashes and bugs
  • Minor changes in game UI
  • Updated code of the open source repository on GitHub to the latest changes

What's nextI am currently working on the second alpha build, which has the goal to be more stable and closer to the actual game, features-wise at least.

The week following the release of the first alpha build I posted a poll on the Discord server of the game, asking people to help me define the development roadmap and these are the top priorities according to their votes:

  1. Audio support
  2. AI
  3. Tutorial
  4. Gameplay
  5. Map editor

The first feature is already implemented, so I will focus my work on the others, even if I am not planning to do anything for the tutorial yet as there's still a lot to do and to finalize before I can start with that.

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