The last few updates have focused very heavily on the engine and on the polish, so we are delighted to be spending a large amount of time on the story progression for the current update. Lets preview some of the things that are coming.
Our first goal was to move the game’s storyline through all of the red zone so that you can play up to the completion of all core redzone content. This work is essentially done at this point, but has not been debugged or fully tested.
The red zone includes a batch of new characters, about 500+ lines of dialogue, and many new missions with a big emphasis on space combat. It also comes with a significant leap in available technology and ship hulls, only some of which is currently available in the red zone’s current unfinished state.
The story will have you uniting the forces of the red zone against a common enemy…or just killing lots of them for fun and profit. It’s hard sometimes to draw a line between these moral grey areas, and where the pirates live everything looks red.
We also wrote a new algorithm for forcing areas of your save file to regenerate themselves when upgrading a save file to a new version. This gives us the power to change the layout of key storyline terrain such as the pirates’ cove which now has a warp gate in it. It’s also probably the only core engine feature we worked on, since the emphasis has been on new story content.
Under development right now is the zone which will come after the red zone story content, pitting the player against the core SSC regions and even more new characters.
Note that this process requires not just mapping, but designing characters with unique personalities, goals, interests, and varieties of alcoholism. I’ve mapped out the plot for 5 more games worth of story in the big picture, but in order to actually write quests and dialogue we need to hammer out the small details of the story and that takes time.
Oh, and by the time we are done with the grey zone the player should expect to have the entire tech level 2 unlocked so we can finally start moving into the more interesting stuff that Jan has saved for the end in order to motivate himself.
Or put another way, while this image continues to grow on the bottom half…we aim to have the entire top half (plus all the secret stuff not pictured) available to players by the time this update is released.
Although it is obviously not public knowledge when a steam sale may or may not happen in the future…it is often the case that sort of thing takes place with greater frequency as the year approaches its end. Today is an excellent example, however the future holds even more. It is often our goal to push out content slightly before one of these events so as to maximize our potential impact on your unwitting bank accounts.
While we can’t disclose what may or may not happen around the winter holiday months, we can disclose that our developers are working their butts off to be free from the burden of this patch by the time the eggnog starts flowing.