Welcome to our second (and far more official) April update!
We had a bit of fun on April 1st, as most of you know, but if you any of you missed out on it, you can head on over here for some tongue-in-cheek giggles.
In today’s update, though, we’re covering a number of topics revolving around our plans for the big V 0.1.0 (Alpha) launch. Firstly, we want to let all of our Beta Kickstarter Backers know that they will soon be receiving an instructional email that explains how to obtain your Steam version of the game.
Previously, we stated that we want to begin moving into the Alpha Stage and send the Pre-Alpha off to greener pastures in the near future. We have decided that the game will officially transition over to Alpha when the V 0.1.0 patch hits (which will be implemented over the next few months). We’re aiming to have core systems, such as Nugget AI and Planet Generation, polished and optimized. As you know, we have been spending a lot of time lately working on performance optimizations and building the most stable platform for future eras and features. We’re always experimenting with and developing more solutions as the game progresses.
Based on the feedback we’ve collected and the feedback you have submitted to our forums, we have decided to make Nuggets more autonomous. We want them to be more independent, more self-sufficient, and more alive. Don’t worry, they’re still slaves to your desires, but now you don’t have to spend so much time with them. It’s a very unhealthy and one-sided relationship, but they’ll probably never notice. Mortals are so ignorant and easily manipulated, aren’t they? That’s why we love them.
What’s changing, exactly?
Well, the switch to a more autonomous system means that you’ll be spending far less time controlling them via sliders and managing their jobs. They’ll also be more intelligent with how they select and prioritize actions. We’ll be talking a lot more about it in our next update.
For V 0.1.0, we’re planning to have multiple systems polished down to a (mostly) finished product. Although, we always maintain that things will keep changing until we cover our eyes and release the gold product into the world. And then, um, change things again in post-launch updates.
Right now, we’re still stuck in the Stone Age. That statement’s got a number of meanings. Basically, it’s taking us longer to build this first era mainly because we’re implementing most of the systems you’ll see throughout the game.
With the Stone Age, we pretty much introduce core gameplay mechanics, which, after mastering, will cause progress to move much faster and allow for additional areas to be added reasonably quickly. It’s better for us to get the design and implementation nailed down before adding too much. It’s a lot easier to rework a system that hasn’t been completely implemented throughout every era. For example, rewriting and reworking the research system after the assets for every era were added would have been absolutely soul-destroying.
Here is the full list of things we plan to implement before V 0.1.0:
- Nugget Courier job
- Updated Research System
- Improved Messaging System (Nuggets will have bubbles above their heads reflecting their needs and current status. This also applies to buildings. An icon will appear above buildings that are occupied by Nuggets, out of order, damaged, and so on.)
- Updated Nugget ID card. This card will better reflect a Nugget’s current status and the conditions currently affecting them. Residential building limitations. This system will assign families to their own building. This means no more awkward situations with 20 people living in one hut. There’s no telling what they got up to in there. Each Nugget will need to have their own house to survive (but direct families can live together).
- Eateries. An Eatery can serve multiple Nuggets at a time. Nuggets eating in eateries will refill their hunger faster, and their starvation speed will be much slower after eating at eateries. Can you spot how many times the word ‘eat’ appeared there? Eateries require at least one Cook, with a max of two.
- Cemeteries. As with any living creature in The Universim, Nuggets die. It’s a sad reality, but at least they’re easily replaceable. After they pass away, their bodies will begin spreading disease if not adequately dealt with. Cemeteries will help keep your Epicenter clean and healthy and allow sad family members to recover their Happiness level faster.
- More god Power mechanics. Building construction prioritisation power, increased Nugget conception (better fertility) power, the god menu, and the god Points system.
- Property renaming. You’ll be able to rename everything in the game. News messages will reflect changes accordingly.
- Happiness. Happiness can increase or decrease a Nugget’s productivity. Sad/angry Nuggets can also set objects on fire or destroy things.
- Nuggets will now be affected by temperature changes. Nuggets will slow down or die in extreme conditions.
- Farm Improvements. We will introduce new crops and numerous balance changes alongside various UI improvements.
- New foliage system. This includes the separation of food from regular trees and plants. Overall foliage improvements (not only visually, but performance-wise as well).
- Larger overall planet size.
- Water consumption changes for buildings and Nuggets. Three new buildings are going to be introduced with this: the Pump, Well, and Reservoir. We’re adding a distribution system that will spawn lakes with fresh water across the planet. You’ll need to place pumps to extract and deliver water from them to your Epicenter.
This is a pretty ambitious list, and we’re going to do our best to deliver everything mentioned here. However, sometimes unexpected bugs or other factors can eat away at our development time, but it’s all for the greater good. We chose a slow and strong development process over a fast and broken one.
Since the last update, we’ve been dealing with a number of bugs and even had to partially rewrite our AI system. The hot fix threw us off track somewhat, which is why the upcoming update will not be as substantial as always, but we’ll be introducing some important foundations for future updates in the package.
Here is the list of things that we’re planning to work on after we move into Alpha. Remember, the list is subject to change based on feedback and the current state of the game.
- Fire: a magical entity that has the tendency to make things hot. It will warm the surrounding area during cold winters and will consume wood points to remain active. It can also set objects ablaze, making it rather dangerous.
- Expeditions and mystery objects. This system will allow you to prepare Nugget Expeditions and send them to discover new lands, resources, and mysterious happenings.
- Witch Doctors. Eccentric, slightly mad, and wildly inconsistent. They will heal your injured/sick Nuggets. We hope...
- Community Bath. Who would have thought that a gathering of naked Nuggets will increase the community’s happiness?
- Fishing. You know the drill.
- Schools. Smarter and more productive Nuggets will rule the world.
- Hunting. It’s simple. Place a Hunter’s Hut, assign Nuggets, send them out into the wilderness, and watch them be brutally mauled by bears. Sadly, it doesn’t end with an Oscar nomination.
- Road system. This is in preparation for the implementation of the Medieval and Modern ages.
As usual, thank you for your awesomeness!
All the best, The Crytivo Crew