For years now we have been developing a single player game because we were mistakenly lead to believe that a multiplayer game in an infinite persistent universe where the interior of every ship and station are simulated would be a challenging task. Indeed, we remained stuck in our beliefs even when the community pointed out that it should be totally easy, and perhaps there was just a way to “activate” the old netcode that existed in our (less than half working) multiplayer demo that we made before our multiplayer kickstarter failed 6 years ago. Some players were even kind enough to decompile our exe and tell us that multiplayer code was in there, but we were just too stubborn and blind to see it! We should have listened. Well today I have to apologize to all of you, because while stumbling drunkenly through the code at 2AM looking for a way to make the early game more punishing for new players I stumbled on a variable that I had never seen before: Changing this variable leads to this… I am going to have to re-learn everything I thought I knew about programming now because after setting this variable to true, the game is suddenly fully multiplayer, and I don’t even understand how that’s possible. Me and the team have been testing it extensively, and no matter how many times we enjoy an afternoon of totally sick co-op space battles against NPC battleships or other players in a pvp deathmatch, we just can’t wrap our head around how the game could have been multiplayer all along without our knowledge. Sure the code was always there to send and receive messages, but that code wasn’t working even when we wrote it, and we’ve added years of changes with no consideration to maintaining a stable network state. The chance that the bits in our codebase could simply align themselves to form working network code without our knowledge…well it seems absolutely impossible and has lead us to question our own sanity. But boy do we feel stupid for telling you it would be impossible. One must wonder, where do we go from here? How do we fix bugs in code that doesn’t even exist? If we change anything will it stop working? There’s even a fully functional chat and party system using UI elements that we’ve never seen before! Decisions like these require heavy drinking… So it’s official! Today on April 1st we are officially announcing Wayward Terran Frontier: Vagabonds, our new multiplayer action RPG sandbox game. It’s got all the ship combat and world-gen features and items from Zero Falls, because it’s just Zero Falls with a single bit changed from 0 to 1, but this time it’s multiplayer, so we’re selling it as an entirely new game! Once again we are totally blown away by this new development, it’s as shocking to you as it is to us. We don’t even know the exact release date yet since we didn’t expect to be revealing a second game any time soon. Obviously we will need to prepare the online cash shop and loot boxes before anything can go to customers for testing, but as of today we are reaching out to influencers on twitch and youtube who will hopefully try to convince you to buy it! As you might expect, this means all single-player development for Zero Falls is simply canceled and that project is fully abandoned. Why would anyone ever want to play through a story when you could play battle-royal space ships arena? It’s for the best. So check out our stream, and tell your friends, because we finally have the game you have all been asking for and it’s coming soon to an online retailer near you! -George
In the game development industry, it is essentially guaranteed that at some point in your project you will look at the entire thing and realize that one of the most core components, central to the entire design, has simply been done wrong from the beginning. Depending on budget, or more often leadership and partner deadlines, it often then becomes a choice for the development team: Do we put an ugly bandaid on this feature and release it as-is, knowing that it is wrong? Or do we invest a significant amount of time and effort to drastically change the direction of development at such a late stage?
The two most complained about things in the previous version seem to be the lame tutorial, the difficulty of learning the controls, and the fact that it is hard to get crystals during the mid-game when the story tells you to go talk to the pirates. Addressing these complaints have been the primary focus of my most recent development work.
A wise person once said, “There’s weed killer in our corn!” but I digress. Today I’m here to talk about shiny beam shaped explosions of fun.