We focused on graphics for a month between mid-june to mid-july, because it was needed to produce our Steam trailer video - timing wise there was no other solution. We hadn’t focused on graphics for almost 2 years prior to that.
We’re currently not focusing on balance changes, unless you think spending 3 days on balance tweaks is “focusing on it”. It’s also mixed up with lots of things which aren’t related to balance; for example most of last week was actually spent on Steam authentication ( almost done now ).
As for the rest of your post, yes, everything you listed is indeed planned to be included in the Early access. And in fact much more ( ship upgrades is probably the biggest feature still missing ).
Now there is only a little over 5 weeks left until EA. The development strategy now should be “minimum I need to survive”. Here is some ideas to help:
Remove the Carrier from EA. The Carrier cause slowdowns near it. It loses it’s livery. It hard to spawn from an AI Carrier. You cannot land back on it. It needs too much work to make EA. Give it some love post-EA.
Keep balance changes to configuration settings. Avoid new gameplay and graphics development. Debug what you have now. Finish UI development.
Simulate load on the server. You need to get hundreds of clients to connect to the server.
Do Ship Upgrades post EA. Too many potential balance issues.
I’m tempted to agree here. There’s no carrier-centred gameplay that would be interesting for players at the moment and I tend to avoid it for that reason. Could maybe keep NPC carriers if they’re smarter.
In my head, UI and missions are absolute priority now.
Alongside this needs to be a robust upgrade system that keeps people coming back to earn that next item, and some sort of reward beyond that too, probably. I’m sure the ideas are lined up, but we are running short on testing time before EA.
Hi, I also agree, and I came across this already in 2020, after the death of the ship I have to fly to the battle zone for a very long and tedious time, and there is a desire to press the button to delete the Game. The game interface is not attractive. There is no Player development, no ships development, and the Player does not have his own ships, judging by the mechanics of the game, the player rents a ship, then the question is, why this game? What is the point of it? What do developers want to entice the player with? Not clear skirmishes? What does the player get from these fights and wasting time in the game? Pleasure? Not. Pointless Game at this stage. developers in a hurry to present the game in Steam? Well, again, I went into the game Players = 0