ArkCo Weekly News #8
It has been a tremendously busy week for us at ArkCo! Development has really picked up, and Edge of Space is coming together very well. In some ways it's been BETTER than expected. We are finding that the extra time we spent earlier on, ensuring our core features were working the best that they could be, is translating to a much easier time implementing the more advanced systems. This week's upcoming patch is a prime example. As we worked on the game's new modular weapons system, the team got a bit distracted by discovering that the "holopet" system would be easier to put in than we had anticipated. Since we know that travels in space can be a lonely line of work, we dove right in and got the pet system functioning in time to go in with the weapons patch today, provided nothing blows up on us! We look forward to seeing our ArkCoNauts meeting new friends throughout the world as they explore! Here is a picture of our core engineer, Paul, with his Dice Droid "Blinky":
Quite the odd little fellow, isn't he? You never know what you will find out there in the far reaches of space! The observant viewer will notice something else drastically different in the above screen: a drastic overhaul of the game's tile graphics and blending. For quite some time we had heard community members and critics alike decrying the "blocky" look of the tiles in Edge of Space. The feeling we were trying to convey, of the biome's properties "overtaking" the terrain, seemed to be translating into a more grid-like appearance to the world. With this feedback in mind, we revisited the system, and looked for a better, more well-blended approach. The answer we settled on was to remove the effects that were biome specific, except on the surface layer of the area. The effect has beaten our expectations for how much better the game could look, and we look forward to seeing the community's response to the new style.
On the Community side of things, our growth has definitely been more visible as well. New members have been flocking to the IRC, forums, and other social sites. To celebrate this, we wanted to give a much more involved feeling to our forums in particular. For that we introduced our new ArkCo Divisions. Users can now opt-in to a position within ArkCo, giving them not only a fun forum title for roleplay, but also opening the door to fun possibilities down the road, such as competitive gameplay, chances to design something for the game, and many surprises to come that will make the role you choose come into play. Our community team has definitely been busy putting it all into place.
As if the patch hadn't kept the team busy enough, we also introduced our Edge of Space Wiki last week. No longer will players have to scour the internet in search of help for any of the game's features. We felt it was high time to bring out a one-stop site for guides, FAQ's and tutorials. As it evolves, it will also feature lists of the creatures, items, weapons, armor and more. Many players have already expressed their thanks for having a wiki to get them through the learning curve. You can check it out here:
Today will be a busy one to be sure, as patch days always are, but we look forward to taking a step back tonight to enjoy gameplay with the community on our livestream. As a developer there is nothing more satisfying than seeing first hand the enjoyment your game is bringing to its players. We have included a surprise in the patch that we think will make everyone very happy! As we get back to work, we just want to say as always that everyone is welcome to stop by our forums between blogs, to keep up to date with what's been going on and what's to come.
Thanks for reading, and we'll see you next week for the ArkCo Weekly News!