Now that full production is underway we want to start writing weekly summaries of the work we’re doing. These summaries will be pulled from two micro-blogging topics on our forums which will contain small updates made throughout the week. There is one topic for engineering (https://forums.inovaestudios.com/t/quick-progress-reports-engineering) and one topic for art (https://forums.inovaestudios.com/t/frequently-infrequent-art-updates).
On the engineering side of things we were primarily focused on finishing up all of the account management and authentication needed for players who have pledged the appropriate tier to be able to play the game. This effort is nearly complete and we will soon get back to finishing up installation and deployment. You may have noticed over the last few days that the forums have been going up and down a bit. This was due to an odd issue with Discourse that seems to only affect a small number of websites. We found a workaround for the problem and since its implementation the forums have been running smoothly.
Yesterday we updated our production web infrastructure in preparation for importing all of our Kickstarter and IndieGoGo backer information. We haven’t imported the data yet because we’re currently having an issue with the IndieGoGo API that prevents us from being able to figure out when we have a new pledge. Naturally we want someone who pledges our game to be able to begin playing it as soon as possible and we’re currently working with their developer support staff to get it all sorted out. Once backer information is imported the most immediate change will be that those of you who have pledged Developer Access or higher will be able to access our private development board on the forums. The rest of you who pledged Asteroid Supporter or higher will receive placeholder badges on the forums. These placeholder badges will be pretty unsexy at first but we’ll replace them with an appropriate level of awesome as soon as we can.
On the art side all of the assets that were made for our Kickstarter and the prototype are going to be replaced. This was the intent from the moment we began work on the Kickstarter campaign as we knew that once we had more resources available and were able to learn from past mistakes we would be able to produce much higher quality work for the final game. Recent advances in hardware have also allowed us to update our polycount budget which enables us to dramatically increase the amount of detail in our ships.
To that end Jan and everybody’s favorite space beard - Hutchings - are working hard to get the Starfold bomber updated and integrated into the game. The bomber was featured in rough form as an enemy ship in our Kickstarter campaign video. They’re producing a new cockpit for it, updating the geometry, and re-texturing the entire ship. Initially all of these new/updated assets will be in placeholder form so don’t expect shipping quality from integration day 1. We’ll be iterating on our art assets throughout development. Kristian is hard at work modernizing the texture packs for all of our planets and asteroids. The asteroids in-particular were rather hastily integrated into the prototype so we’ll be adding a lot more depth and variety to them over time.
As we mentioned last week our #1 priority continues to be getting the prototype into the hands of our Developer Access backers as soon as possible. Game development is always full of unexpected bumps in the road however we’re pushing through, making great progress on all fronts, and we look forward to getting into the game with all of you soon!