Infoslate #4 - December update

Progress has slowed to nearly a halt, but that doesn't mean things aren't happening. Read on to see what has been achieved the past few months.

5 months ago

Latest Post Infoslate #8 - April update by Kirk Bushell public

Good morning/afternoon/evening, Directors!

It's just a few days until the silly season now, and I for one am waiting with bated breath. 2023 has been a monumental year for me personally, and I can't wait for it to be over, as 2024 is when things will kick up a notch for Halcyon Online.

On the topic of Halcyon, the last 2 months have been extremely quiet. As I remarked in the last update, real-life responsibilities and other projects are preventing me from putting the time into Halcyon that I would like. That said, that is all about to change, as there are 2 projects that are nearing completion, both of which should be done by mid-January.

Come February, Halcyon Online development should be in full swing. In addition to my full-time job, I expect to be putting in another 30-40 hours every week for Halcyon, alone. It's going to be crazy busy, but I've been looking forward to this for a very, very long time. As they say, when you love what you do - it's not really work.

Design work

As such, there isn't much to update you on other than the fact that I received the completed branding update for Halcyon Online just this week.

That's essentially the logo, social avatar variant, as well as the overall design for the main site (not the in-game design). This is a huge stepping stone, and is an important step in setting the feel and tone of the project.

Some not so good news however, is that I tried to implement a process working with my designer to get the game design completed before developing it. Turns out this wasn't such a great idea - it was hard to understand the various mechanics I hadn't written up for Michael, and it was a process he wasn't particularly used to (he informed me that the way he usually works is to join the project near the end, and then implement UI and UX based on a functioning game).

In hindsight, this makes a lot of sense, and will save a lot of time - so Michael won't be working on Halcyon Online's design for UI/UX now until probably mid-late 2024. It's not a setback so much as just a better approach for all involved, ensuring we can be efficient in the execution of thise phase of development. It's been a great learning lesson for me personally, and means I'm even more motivated to complete various features so that I can put Michael's incredible design skills back to work.

Combat mechanics update

In addition to the design update, I've gone back and revisited some game mechanics I was struggling with from a game design perspective, areas that just didn't "feel right". This was around how combat worked. Let me explain.

Previously, combat worked in such a way that craft had an initiative value, and that value determined their sequence of attack, from 1 to 15, with 15 being the slowest craft. Each round of combat would consist of each craft acting once, before the next round would begin.

This has now changed, and requires a complete rework of ship stats. In short, initiative still determines in what order you attack, but it now also determines how -often- you can attack with a given unit. This means that if a craft has an initiative of 15, they'll only get to attack once in a given round, but a craft with an initiative of 5 could attack 3 times in that same round! 🤯 This gives lighter and faster craft a lot more potential to act, and is much more aligned with how an engagement may function.

There are other aspects to this, as well - previously, after a craft attacked they would need to find a new target in the next round. This is still true, but now craft stay locked onto their targets, if their target is a primary target (more on that to come in later articles). In short, combat now has far more action with a lot more going on in a given round. Early tests have shown much more interesting combat conclusions, as well.

Overall, not the sort of update I was hoping to provide you all at this point, but it is unfortunately the reality of the situation. Come 2024, things will be changing considerably, as I work hard (potentially with other developers) to bring you all a game that is deserving of your support.

Kirk Bushell

Published 5 months ago