Welcome! This is the first post of The Steamers’ development blog.
After many months full of sleepless nights and hard working days, we are incredibly proud to (finally!) reveal what our project is all about.
Probably the most important point we would like to share is that we have definitely nailed the concept of the game: it will be an RTS_RPG_3Rd person Action game with borrowed elements from crafting, trading and civ games... with a little bit of city building on top…
All jokes aside, we believe that games should not be overly constrained by genres and acronym specific game mechanics but rather by their fun factor. And if that means controlling a ninja Mortal Kombat style in the middle of a city building simulation, then so be it…
However there are some technical limitations as to how much work scope an indie gaming studio can tackle at once. Indeed each gaming mechanics, design ideas and technical implementation of those ideas are work intensive to execute; particularly in our case, as we tend to be perfectionists that refuse to release anything that doesn't sport a high level of polish.
We believe we have found a good compromise between a game than we can release in a realistic timeframe while leaving it sufficiently modular and open for growth through updates.
Now, we agree, we did not invent the concept of DLCs…but, our DLCs will have a unique flavour. They won’t merely be extensions of essentially the same game with different mods, rather they will open up an entire new set of gameplay and mechanics that will completely transform the player’s experience within our persistent world. Want to defend the Republic of Esporia from an enemy invasion? then download the war module. Want to race steam machines within town? download the racing module. Want to fly Airships across a battlefield where you once played as a rifleman? then download the flying machines module…our imagination and your suggestions will be the only limits to how much we can grow the gameplay experience. This organic approach to game design is what we believe to be the best way to keep producing fresh, quirky and most importantly fun ideas into the future.
These modules will be available regularly in the form of updates. As of today, we are approaching completion of the first module: an action game in a 3rd person perspective set during the invasion of Esporia by the pesky imperial colonists. This first module will form the backbone of the rest of the game and will introduce the first elements necessary for it to grow.
As of the 16th of June 2016, here is where we stand:
Leo has completed the large world map that forms our world, it contains small towns, large cities, mountain passes, rivers, strategic bridges and even a “valley of fertility” that may well be an important locale of the story narrated in the first release…
Damien has put the finishing touches on the 250 models that populate the world; just so you know, those models include war ostriches riden by courageous musketeers (complete with tabards and large plumed hats)…Who doesn’t want to charge a steam tank from the back of a giant bird and fire a medieval era rocket at it (whatever that is)?
Animations were a big chunk of work and Leo produced on last count (as of this afternoon) 122 different ways for our little virtual guys to move around and interact with their world.
From a programming perspective, Louido has completed the first stage of the artificial intelligence allowing for credible battlefield interactions between warring soldiers. They now know how to shoot, take cover and move around the map where they are needed.
We have also written the main themes of the soundtrack and started recording them using our in house music studio.
Next will be the character’s voices and the volumetric sound effects.
We are indeed very close to a completed module that will be playable for free (more on our reasons to offer the first instalment of the game for free later).
Stay tuned, and don’t forget that you get to have a say on the development of this game by sending us comments. We will endeavour to include your best ideas.
From the Shack-Studio team.