The Open Alpha Roadmap
EDIT on 8/17/2020: The time frames for the road map have been pushed back a few weeks.
First and foremost - thanks to all who have given IGEO DX a spin so far! This post is going to paint a big picture overview of what to expect during the Open Alpha period as far as new content and features. It will also detail the transition from the Open Alpha to the Closed Beta.
The Open Alpha period will obviously contain tons of small patches and bug fixes as I've mentioned in previous posts, but there will be several larger updates that will introduce new content and features for testing. They are as follows:
Update #1 - Late August
- Will introduce many accessibility and quality of life improvements:
- Move Undo - this system will allow players to undo any move they have previously made, including moves that cause Game Overs; this system is currently in place but turned off as I iron out a few more issues with it - it will be released with issues that I will certainly need help isolating!
- Shape Spawning UI - a simple set of UI elements will be added when spawning from Cross Blocks to better indicate the selection
- Player Speed Control - this setting will be under a new Gameplay tab in the settings panel; it will increase or decrease the player's speed; this is largely accessibility and personal QoL change for those who find the cursor moves too fast; we're recommending those who want to speed-run the levels to turn this sucker up to max speed
- Level Preview Images - each level in the selection menu will have a preview image, so you won't need to guess anymore :)
- Quick Restart - a quick restart keymap will be added to the 'R' key to allow for quicker level restarts (currently, you can only restart a level from the Pause Menu)
- 90-degree Camera aka "Classic Mode" - part of the challenge of IGEO DX is it's controls in an isometric camera view; to aid in accessibility and difficulty, a new setting under Gameplay will allow players to use a top-down 90-degree angle, instead of the 45-degree isometric angle which will help ease movement
- Inverted Controls - some of the challenges of movement can be reduced for some users if the movement vectors are inverted; this will be added as a new setting under Gameplay
Update #2 - Mid-September
- Will introduce some underlying systems and begin the transition to Beta art and UI development:
- Controller Support - the game will feature full controller support for menus and gameplay
- Updated UI/UX - while the overall look and feel is in great shape, this update will address inconsistencies in the graphical elements of the UI as well as controller and keyboard navigation changes
- Live Info Panel - the current alpha info panel has text that is baked into the game client; this update will plug that into a live feed that we control from the backend, so news and updates can be relayed easily without having to patch the game
- Custom Controller/Keymapping - players will be able to rebind keys and controller buttons to suit their preferences
- Performance Settings - the Video tab will be updated with several new settings for controlling the game's graphics for performance tuning (Anti-Aliasing modes, Post-Process effect toggling, texture sampling (Anisotropy), Shadow quality, etc.)
Update #3 - Early October
- Final update for the Open Alpha period:
- Addresses any lingering bugs and issues introduced in Alpha
- Level Editor Preview - a bare-bones preview of the level editor that will be the biggest focus of the Beta stage of development; this version will only allow levels to be saved locally for testing
- Achievements Preview - the alpha implementation of the game's built-in achievement system (will later be tied into Steam)
- Beta Level Progression - the level select menu and level progression system will be updated to its beta version (the design for this is currently under construction - we will be exploring it in a design-focused dev blog in the coming weeks)
- Beta Levels - with the new progression system, more levels will be added and current levels will be removed or modified to fit into the updated progression scheme
- Final Alpha Credits - for all who gave feedback and submitted bug reports during the Open Alpha, your name will be added to its own special section in the credits - it will remain there for eternity, enshrining your contribution to IGEO DX
Transition to Closed Beta
The Open Alpha will end officially when all bug reports from the phase have been addressed. At that point in time, the distribution of the game for free will cease and the Closed Beta will begin. IGEO DX will officially be for sale for $9.99 from that point on.
However, if you downloaded the Open Alpha or were one of the many who have access to IGEO through the Racial Justice bundle - you already own the game! We will be honoring any of you who played the original IGEO and the DX Open Alpha with keys to the Closed Beta and full release of the game on Itch.
Those who purchase the game during the Closed Beta will receive the full version on Itch, as well as a Steam key for the full release in December.
The Itch community has been vital to my small successes in game development and while it is difficult to maintain a full-featured game on two platforms I am committed to as much feature parity as possible between Itch and Steam.
That's all for now - until next time!
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