Alpha and crowdfund split

Open Alpha / Kickstarter Update

In June, we announced plans for our Alpha release, as well as our speculative Kickstarter announcement date. We are happy to say that our Alpha is still on track for a release this fall. We are planning on having an Open Alpha fully playable throughout the winter. However, we recently decided to push the Kickstarter campaign to early 2018.

There were numerous factors that influenced this decision, but it’s important to note that our intentions to have GalaCollider playable in the fall remain intact. The important distinction in this change of timeline means that you will now have the opportunity to play GalaCollider before our crowdfund. This allows us to get feedback from a much larger player base so we can make adjustments leading up to the Kickstarter. Perhaps even more importantly, if we ran the crowdfund when we originally intended (at the end of the year), we wouldn’t have been able to spend the majority of our gathered funds before taxes were due.

With this information in mind, we will continue to update you all on the ongoing progress. We believe that building a community of players will be incredibly helpful for the coming Kickstarter. As always, your feedback and support will ultimately influence GalaCollider, so we hope to hear from you as the Open Alpha draws nearer!

Commander Cards

We decided to replace Core Worlds with Commander cards. Decks are built around a Commander card, which doubles as your starting planet. The Commander functions exactly as the Core World has in the past, possessing a unique ability that can dramatically affect how a deck plays out.  Here are some of the new Commanders!

Uki Mondragon

Captain Uki Mondragon is the embodiment of a weathered, dependable leader. She is tough, smart, determined, and resourceful, with a loyal crew. As the fleet commander of one of Earth’s earliest sleeper convoys, she could never have imagined just how far fate would bring her.

 

Captain Mondragon commands the Astral Wanderer, the flagship of the 187th Galactic Colony Fleet. Launched before the development of jump drive, the 187th Fleet traveled at sublight speeds, drifting along a pre-plotted course with the colonists and crew in suspended animation. Eons passed this way before the fleet reached its destination: the third planet of the Norollan system in the Caelaran sector.

 

Of the twenty-seven vessels that embarked from Earth, only sixteen remained with the fleet—the fates of the others unknown. But there was no time to mourn for souls lost, and no time to celebrate the journey’s end. Before they could reach the orbit of their intended home, the would-be colonists were confronted by a ship of alien beings—the first intelligent life not of Earthly origin that humans had ever seen. And they were not welcomed. Of those sixteen ships that had made it all the way across the galaxy, only seven survived a disastrous first contact with the hostile Sylith they encountered there.

 

In time, Captain Mondragon made contact with other Sapiens, fellow branches of humanity’s descendants that occupied this part of space; discovered that her home galaxy, the Milky Way, was in the midst of a chaotic collision with once-distant Andromeda; and learned that there were others like her, colonists from the earliest days of deep-space flight who now wandered the stars, known as Peregrines. Light-years and eons from everything she once knew, she remains unwavering in her original mission: to keep her people safe and seek out new homes for the children of Earth among the distant stars.

Solta Vrithin

Niu Kor’Ima Solta Vrithin is the Supreme High Priest of the Void, spiritual leader of all Sylith. From their seat at the First Arbor on the Sylith homeworld Elgyin, they interpret Hathsti’s will and ensure that balance is maintained throughout the Divine Void.

 

Of late, that balance has been increasingly precarious. The gradual, balletic merging of galaxies is causing chaos on a cosmic scale, throwing Sylith colonies throughout the Continuum into disarray and uprooting entire populations. And the incursion of hostile Sapiens invaders from the Milky Way into Continuum territory is even greater cause for concern, an existential threat to the Sylith people and way of life.

 

Attuned to the mounting imbalance in the Void, and disturbed by the ominous Perceptions of certain of their more sensitive kor’imri, Niu Kor’Ima Vrithin determined that the time had passed for merely watching events from afar. Assembling a command fleet, they departed the Arbor and took to the Void of space in order to confront the alien threat directly.

Visual Effects Update

We are currently testing new visual effects for each ship and weapon in the game. Every attack in the game will have a distinct effect, from pulse firing to missile barrages. These visual effect changes will transfer over to planetary invasions and ground battery assaults. Below we have a small sample of our work in progress on the pulse fire weapon. We will also showcase these future changes on our Twitter and Facebook accounts, so be sure to follow if you want to see more!

Code Merge Update

Save/Load is now officially working! We recently made a huge code merge in GalaCollider that brought all the work we put into Save/Load into the core game assets. We have worked on this for approximately nine months now, making it our most complex piece of code yet. The Save/Load function is going to allow for asynchronous play in GalaCollider, which will allow players to play at their own pace. Asynchronous play takes us in an entirely new direction from what we had with “peer to peer” gameplay and allows turns to be taken over several days. This will be a huge benefit to those attempting to play GalaCollider across different time zones, or even just different gameplay schedules. As an extra bonus, this allows you to return to games that you may have disconnected from because of a network error.

The Save/Load feature opens up a lot of doors for what we want to do in the future. For example, Save/Load paves the way for the replay system. Because games are now saved on a separate server, players will eventually be able to revisit entire matches to see where they can improve, or cast or spectate competitive events.

Team Updates

Mike “Hawkeye” Chapman

Hawkeye is our outreach strategist. He has been working in the gaming industry for the last 10 years as a writer, a team manager for several large esports organizations, Team Curse and Denial esports, and managed the community team of Hitbox, a livestream company. Hawkeye has always loved the business behind gaming and esports and is very excited to be working on GalaCollider.

Closing Thoughts

GalaCollider is moving forward at an incredible pace, and we could not be happier with how we as a team have grown along with it. We want to make this game the best it can possibly be, but we cannot do that alone. If you have friends that you think would be interested in GalaCollider, be sure to let them know that they can sign up for the Alpha before the Kickstarter begins and that doing so will raise their Kickstarter pledge level one tier.

Also, if you want to give us feedback or just want to chat, look us up on Discord, Twitter, Facebook, or email.

We wanted to take this time to thank you for all the continued support you have been giving us. We would not be at the point that we are without our community, and we hope to see you soon for our next update.

Summer progress update

Sebastian working on GCHi everyone! Sebastian here. Man oh man, what a trip these last months have been. Pretty surprising that I haven’t posted on the blog since our Open Alpha-4 event. But rest assured, things have been progressing steadily.

Since then I moved to North Carolina, set up shop here and went to a local event called ECGC where I met and ended up recruiting onto the project a good half-dozen people (score).

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Game development progress

Here we see new roll over tips and on the right near our deck a plus symbol reminding me how many cards I draw per turn.
Here we see new roll over tips and on the right near our deck a plus symbol reminding me how many cards I draw per turn.

Where are we with the game now? Well you might have seen our tweets and other posts that our ship 3D models have been improved. While not final they are at least substantially better than before.

I’ve been working on our UI on a continual basis, we have a 2D map mode, improved error feedback when you try to do something you can’t (like move a ship too far), we also added an indicator to warn you if you are going to over-draw and we’ve improved the indicators relating to remaining combat attacks.

We’ve accomplished some bigger architectural changes like moving the camera during replay to each invasion and added many quality of life improvements like: keyboard presses for zooming, rotating and escaping back to prior menus. It’s all shaping up nicely.

We now have more than half a dozen programmers on the team. This is both wonderful and consuming – since I’m doing as best a job of coordinating it all as I can. The approach that we’ve taken is splitting things off into micro teams. So each group is working on something slightly different. If you are curious to know the details, here is a bullet-list of what is in parallel development:

  • Save-load game / async. mode
  • Tutorials
  • User account sync from website to game
  • In-game deck-builder
  • In-game store with connection to web-store
  • In-game profile pages

Some of the above items are nearly done, other items are not for Alpha5 but for our later Beta1 release – yes Beta1 is getting closer! We need the in-game deck builder, in-game store, profile pages and monthly achievements [not yet started] to finally move from Alpha to Beta.

Save-load, a-sync mode and finished tutorials are what you can expect in Alpha5. As of a few months ago it is already a thing that you can create your deck online and then load it right into the game to play. An essential feature when Alpha-5 hits to let you design and play your own decks.

Project progress

jan-sarbort-krypton-dmp-bg-4k

The quest to get funding continues, we’ve had a few prospects that ended up being only a hair’s width away from signing, but nothing in the last few months has crystallized. Several investors are waiting for Alpha-5 to hit before they decide on dropping the cash bomb. I know we, meaning the team, are holding our breath to see what the reception will be once Alpha-5 is released to the general public (you!).

Alpha5 will let you play either head to head [meaning both online at the same time] or asynchronously. What we are calling asynchronous play is akin to play-by-mail style, so you take a turn and then get notified when your opponent is done with theirs so you can continue.

That along with the ability to share and load decks, plus fully scripted tutorials should mean we can really start to catalyze a community around the game.

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One discussion we’ve been having is how open Alpha-5 should be. Do we let in 100 people, 250, 500? 1,000? Or something in-between? Since this version of the game still won’t have the last pieces for Beta-1 is it too early to let in a lot of people?

Alpha-5 will be missing an in-game store – so no new content releases – just base cards, no monthly achievements to play for… You will be able to make your own decks, but you will need to make them on our online deck builder and then import them into the game. So the in-game deck builder is still unfinished. It’s not an obvious question.

Press recognition, signups to our newsletter, followers on Twitter, Facebook – these are all ultimately going to be pretty vital to move our game out of the basement project that it is – to a proper market-comparable and compelling game. We need awareness if we are going to break through and get the game back on a crowdfunding platform before we can switch from Alpha to public-release.

You can do a lot on a shoestring, it just takes more time cause it has to happen on the side – but some things have hard costs attached to them, like licensing beautiful artwork and music.

New Artists

Speaking of artists, wow – we’ve had a lot of new artists join our family as contributors!

All of these people have agreed to let us use some [sometimes a lot] of their artwork pro-bono until we release or are funded. Big love goes out to all of them. Our next blog post will show case them, for now though this post has gotten too long as-is so I’ll wrap it up.

Catch you again soon!

Post Alpha Event Round up

Well it sure was an awesome weekend! We had a lot of fun playing everyone. It was great to see so much activity on our stream and new Discord channels as well.

great-treeMy favorite play was rushing a Sylith dreadnaught onto Sid’s core world by turn 5 or so. Something I never did before and it won me the game in record time (sorry Sid!)

😉

Our stats show that around 100 people tried the game out over the weekend. Most of you like to play on Friday and Saturday. We think you make yummy BBQs or go to church on Sundays, since you play less games then.

Streams

Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 6.02.17 PMSanosuke Hitori and Power to Mario did a great job streaming games on our channel. Big thank you to them! But also to our entire team for making our weekend smooth and so much fun.

Press

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We got some nice press coverage from several sources, but most notably a front-page article on Touch Arcade. We did also get a lot of great feedback, a nice up surge in sign ups for our newsletter and a large number of interested players in Playtesting.

GDC

Meanwhile 3 of our team members went to GDC, we talked there with potential publishers and sponsors. As you may know we are actively seeking seed funding and/or a publisher at this time to help us get the last few miles from Alpha to a Beta release. Wish us luck!

What we are working on now

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 5.34.06 PMBeyond preparing presentations and materials are hard at work on Alpha5. We coded this week a turn timer clock and some new maps. We’ve also begun preliminary work on the first expansion of the game [shhh]. However I really must get back to coding our single player tutorial mission and finish it. We’re mid-way through making a level where each aspect of the UI enables itself progressively as you learn more about the game.

It’s an interesting challenge because the game is intuitive once you know how to play, but it still requires some educating to understand the nuances of the minimal UI.

We’re working on two future conventions, but really we’re just dead focused on development and potential investors / publishers.

So if you’ve missed it, check out our new Discord channel. I really like Discord, no login, just jump and and start chatting! You can reach us there anytime.

Subscribe to our Twitch and YouTube pages for live games. Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

Hang in there as we pull the curtains closed again to brew your next galactic evolution.

Colonizing 101

Hello again! It’s Mojumbo here, with another strategy article for our GalaCollider fans.

Today, I’m going to be covering all aspects of colonizing sectors in the game. Colonizing is fundamental to the gameplay, so be sure to absorb all the information to make the best decisions possible to ensure your future victories.

The Colony Ship

Don’t let the 0 attack fool you! Colony ships win games.
Don’t let the 0 attack fool you! Colony ships win games.

The first thing to learn is how to colonize.

Colonizing is done by the Colony Ship. You start a game with 2 Colony Ships and you will always have one in your hand. To offset this, the cost of the Colony Ship slowly increases as you build more and more of them.

As such, a big part of your colonizing strategy needs to be weighing the pros of colonizing more sectors, versus the cons of the ever-increasing cost. For instance, it’s quite normal to have colony ship costs rising to 5 Materials and 5 Research on a bigger map, at which point it will really eat into your resources for the turn if you build one.

Sectors Galore

GalaCollider has a variety of different sectors you will find in the game. Your colonization strategy can be drastically affected by what kind of map you are playing on.

For example, on a map where you are close by your opponent, you may decide to forego heavily colonizing the map in order to build up for a quick attack. On a map with plenty of development slots, you may decide to colonize and build developments everywhere. It’s all in the strategy!

Each sector in the game has a distinct look to it before it is revealed. The important thing to ask yourself, then, is what do the different sectors in the game do?

The following table will list all the different sectors you will find in the game. Use this information to give yourself a better idea of what colonization opportunities await you before you decide to move out any of your ships.

SectorTable

Putting it All Together

Now that you know what colony ships are as well as what each of the different sectors look like, you are ready to think about when and where you should colonize.

Often, I play games against newer players and they colonize the first chance they get. This can be problematic. For example, if the two sectors adjacent to your Core World are an Asteroid or a Nebula, which both lack development slots and provide few resources, it is likely worth avoiding colonizing them early.

Instead, the better choice might to be move your colony ships up another sector to get them closer to the middle of the map. If you colonize sectors that are closer to your opponent you can quickly start to build up defenses on your sector as well as prepare an attack of your own.

Generally, something to look out for when colonizing sectors are choke points. A choke point is a spot on the map that serves as a bottleneck for your opponent. Let’s say the only way to your opponent is through one sector in the middle of the map – colonizing that one sector and building defenses there is very important! If you were to neglect that choke point and colonize closer to your Core World, you risk letting your opponent claim the middle of the map which would give them free reign to attack you from multiple directions whilst you’re forced to one attack point.

The red player only has 1 sector connecting to the opponent’s side of the map. This is a choke point at its finest.
The red player only has 1 sector connecting to the opponent’s side of the map. This is a choke point at its finest.

That will do it for me today!

So, remember, GallaCollider is all about strategy, and altering your game plan according to the map. In game, think about the cost of your colony ship, the type of sector you want to colonize, and the position of that sector on the map relative to your opponent. It’ll help!

Good luck and happy gaming.

MagFest 2016 decompression

IMG_7269Hello everyone, we had a great MagFest. It was the first time I went to an event that was a mix of music and gaming and I really had zero expectations of what this meant. We got to show case our game AND dance to live gameboy music… how cool is that?

IMG_7247The event takes place in the GayLord resort in Maryland. In other words: A fun time in wonderland.

Our booth ended up looking really nice, we had 4 stations with chairs to play full games and two kiosks that stood at the edge to invite players in to give our game a go. Our three roll up banners added some nice ambiance.

Sid was with me and did a spectacular job of drawing in the crowds and pitching the game. We enjoyed many nights of eating pizza and pasta. I learned about phenomena of local area anonymous chatting: Yik Yak, and got a glimpse of a yet more digital life.

IMG_7257I liked being able to walk through free arcades at any time of the day and night, but most of all I enjoyed sharing GalaCollider with those who were interested enough to come by our booth.

We had times where we were over capacity. It isn’t easy sunning a booth with just two people when you have 6 computers. I wished I had more time to check out the other indies but I did get to play a few great games. I was inspired by the massive battles planned in Camelot Unchained.

IMG_7267Quite a few people came back to play again, one person even came back 6 times! [okay… technically he played 5 times, but still!] – Second place was a 3 time returning guest. It was nice to see a good number of people getting really deep into the game. We collected a good number of signups for our Alpha event and/or as new play testers. This week we are preparing a few things to get ready for their arrival and then I can’t wait to see even more activity in our game.

We are very grateful to MagFest for having selected us to be at the event, thank you to all at the MIVS crew for doing such a great job! We hope you will have us again next time.

Now to get the game ready for our Alpha test event! Only a few weeks left till then.

IMG_7248

Gearing up for MagFest

Less than a week and we will be at MagFest!

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2016-02-10 18.13.18

We’ve been working around the clock on code, design and booth preparations and were pretty happy with where things are landing. There is still a ton more to do, but the game is fully playable and will look pretty nice on our Kiosk stands we bought to showcase the game. We’ve also got nice black floor tiling, and new roll up banners that should arrive [fingers crossed] today on Friday to liven up our area visually.

We were hoping to have both Android and iPads on display to go with our Mac and Windows laptops but sadly the Androids didn’t get here in time to demo the game.

That said we should have 7 devices with us, 2 for playing tutorial missions, 4 for playing full games and 1 for showing off an image gallery and collecting visitor email addresses.

Turns out we will also be getting some cool chairs sponsored by Yogibo including a mini and an ipad case to go with it.

Game Progress

There’s been a ton of updates over the last couple of week to the game, so many that I struggle to even remember what is new anymore. Just yesterday we added 4 new UI buttons to the game so that you now have more than one way to colonize a world, send troops, attack and reset your attack choices. Here are some shots of these new UI buttons:

colonize button

The buttons for information were also moved to the sides of the cards and enlarged to make them easier to tap on tablet devices. Below the “I” button you can now see buttons like the blue icon for colonize, or the red cross hair for setting a target in battle.

We still want to improve the UI further by adding similar buttons and contextual highlights for a lot of other aspects of the game like movement, but

Set Target

this will have to wait now until after MagFest since we need at least 5 days now of stability testing to make sure there are zero bugs remaining.

Tutorials (Puzzles)

Screen Shot 2016-02-12 at 9.10.20 AM

We’ve got single player tutorials in the game now! Seven so far, these are set up like puzzles with tips to get you started. Completing all 7 of them should give you a pretty good basic understanding of the game so that you are then ready to play vs. another player. We plan on making at least another dozen puzzles as time goes on that will increase in difficultly while simultaneously showing off the more refined level of thinking you can achieve in the game. Our AI opponent logically fights, invades and brutalizes you on these puzzles but they are all set up to last a maximum of 1 to 2 turns. So they are intentionally short and very focused, think chess puzzles you might find in a news paper.

Interviews, Streams and Pod cast

Since we last spoke we’ve also had an interview on eXplorminate and a live game stream-interview with Space Game Junky. Plus on our own Podcast we also had a quicker recap of last months progress too.

Alpha Test Event

After MaScreen Shot 2016-02-10 at 4.39.15 PMgFest our next big milestone is the big public Alpha test event we want to schedule for mid March. This is going to be your chance to play the game in what hopefully should be an active weekend with a full lobby of players. You’ll be able to play the game as a single-player vs. the computer to learn the basics and then online vs. other players and us on Twitch streaming live if you want to play us or ask us questions. So please sign up to our Alpha event to let us know you are interested and tell your friends! Everyone can join in, we want it to be extra fun.

New Cards

Yes we have new cards we could show you! But I’m out of time for today, so I’ll leave that update till next time. Until then don’t forget to also jump on our twitter and subscribe to our twitch if you want to catch us in the act of playing and jump in for a game.

Space man out, Seb.

Visual wave

Greetings friends, much has happened in the last few weeks!

MagFest

GalaCollider was selected to present at MagFest! We’re very excited to have a new opportunity to show the game to the world. We’re working hard to get a nice humble booth all organized and prepared for the event.

UI Progress

We have made tremendous progress towards getting the UI of the game improved. We still have a lot to go but there is already a world of difference in the game.

Screen Shot 2016-01-19 at 5.11.24 PM

We’ve also been working on various kinds of visual feedback for different game effects, like red spirals to show a planet is being raided or flowering purple-blue rain when an ability reveals a sector at range.

Screen Shot 2016-01-11 at 10.41.09 PM

Sectors now have colors that are more clear to show ownership, the core world glows brighter, sectors that are not selected have various visual indicators disabled.

The half way point

Alpha4 isn’t done yet, but we’ve decided to make a mid-way marker in the development. Our goal in the next two weeks is to make a stable build of Alpha4 in anticipation of MagFest. We will also use this stable way-point as a means to get everyone on the team playing the newest build too.

Only a few actions remain that can’t be undone with our new Undo button – which has proven to be such an essential feature.

It’s also very easy to load custom decks into the game now, and we’ve got 16 new ships and another half dozen or so other new cards in the current pool to play with.

Progress on the single player mode is currently hampered by a few last features we need to finish. Namely we need to code the game to permit us to set the player’s deck, and the order of the cards in their hand at start. Once we have these things, and a few bugs resolved, we can then work on refinement and testing on our puzzle missions.

Planetary 3D models

The game uses 3d models for many things. Everything on the map is 3D but still linked to a card. There were a number of planets added in Alpha3 but they had some problems, pinched textures at the poles, odd colors, rotation problems, or they just simply glowed too much and didn’t match our concept designs close enough.

I’ve spent the last 3 or 4 days going back to the source files and rebuilding all the planets in our game to be a better representation of what we want to achieve.

Tonight I wanted to see all the planets together and measure which ones are too similar and what some of them should be called / renamed into. Here is what I threw together to help me get oversight:

planets_overview_01

Alpha 5 designs, first look

Starting in Alpha5, your hand will hard-cap at 7 cards. If you have 7 cards you just can’t draw more (or you get fewer cards). You can still discard at will, so it won’t stop you from getting new cards if you clear some space. There are many benefits to this change, first it will mean that turns are faster because we never have to wait for a discard phase. Secondly it will also mean we can show more of each card to the player, gone will be the days of only seeing card edges until roll-over. Ghosts on empty slots and lights that glow to show you your hand-spots filled will also make it quick to count and see if you have space in your hand remaining.

We had always planned on having enemy information displayed on an “Intelligence” tab (bottom left corner) – the problem is, that tab doesn’t exist yet because intelligence mechanics (controlled by playing Spies) is a whole world of mechanics that remains in the future… rather than the present.

It’s important to see information about your opponent, especially their star count, so you know if they are about to win. I wouldn’t say this design I made is done, but it’s starting to go in a good direction.

The idea is to leverage the traditional “street fighter” split, me on the left, enemies on the right. I also really like the idea of seeing avatars – you want to identify as much as possible with your side and your enemy. I have ideas in mind for multi-player games, but this current UI assumes a 1-on-1 arrangement.

Finally the menu, done and undo button will move to be more central – I think that makes more sense? But playing and you – will let us know if this indeed true. So here it is, my first draft for Alpha 5 design changes:

Gala_Mainscreen_space_UI_us_v_them_03

Version Alpha-3 released

Hi everyone and happy holidays! Right before Thanksgiving, we got version 3 of GalaCollider approved and out of the gate from our QA team and into the public eye. Version 3, in the end, was a complicated version to get stable as the addition of the replay engine increased the complexity of the simultaneous transaction system.

But the worst is behind us, version 3 is here and version 4 is already well underway! [Cake and tea time!]

Version 3 is a huge improvement for the game since we now have a separate map editor. This means we can easily create new custom maps, new special sectors, and planets for you to discover and experience a dynamically rich universe. Our new map editor will also be what we use to create solo mode puzzles to both teach and challenge you in the next version 4 release.

Playtest with us?

ContestedWe have a small team of alpha playtesters, but we really would like to expand that team further. Version Alpha-3 offers a lot in the ways of replayability, so try and help co-create our new custom maps! We are promoting version 3 as a means to get more alpha testers now over the next 4 to 8 weeks.

If you would like to playtest our game, let us know. Being a playtester means being a part of our chat group, reviewing cards and maps, discussing features in the game and giving input/feedback into new mechanics and ideas before anyone else gets a chance to experience them.

Back porting

As new features from version 4 get done, we also plan on back porting them to version 3 whenever possible. I know for a fact that the loading of custom decks in version 4 is nearly finished and this will open up a whole new level of game play since players can then go to our online deck builder:

http://db.galacollider.com

Pick the cards they want to use, and then load them into the game.

Deck building status

Speaking of db.galacollider.com, our deck building site is also mid-way to its next update where you will be able to craft decks online and save + share them on your profile. This will be very notable when combined with in-game deck building!

New video

On the media front, Cedric has done a great job refactoring and recording all new material for a new “What is GalaCollider?” video. We are using this video for promoting our game at events, conventions, publishers and potential investors.

New faces

We’ve also got many new people joining, and our website is barely managing to keep up! We still have more people to add on our team page but we just posted yesterday our latest “Meet the Team” with 3 new faces: Connor, Thomas, and Cedric. All three of these gentlemen have been doing great work running our outreach, QA, and video production teams. Warm welcome to them!

Next steps

ColonizedIn the next week QA will begin on deck building of 4.x and an array of new cards. We will also start coding our very first single player puzzle level. When the time comes we’ll do a full blog post on the puzzle levels since they are quite an interesting topic.

Until next time!

Sebastian.

 

 

 

 

You can find the full patch note list here.

updates between updates

Hi folks, we are right in between updates right now. We have Alpha 3.x extremely close to being done but some final sync errors are blocking it. 3.x is going to be a lot of fun to play with custom maps, shorter games, smart replays, tons more planets to discover and re-balanced cards! It also has the first step of a tool tip system that will become a proper tutorial [or puzzle game] in 4.x.

We submitted applications lately to:

  • IndieCup
  • MagFest
  • IGF
  • IndieMegaBooth – PAX East

So far we have 2 out of 2 wins. We’re invited to attend IndieCup in San Francisco and we’ve qualified for round-2 in MagFest, yaay!

Screen Shot 2015-11-10 at 2.39.39 PM

We have a new video being made, you can see some of the screen shots scattered here on this blog post.

Our team is expanding now too, we have Nate Diamond – a new intern programmer that we’re bringing into the fold.

Meanwhile Sydney Meeker and John Bardinelli are joining us to help in a wide array of writing topics. And Amber Chunn should be helping us with maintaining this website.

We should see a post on our site in the near future introducing our latest family members.

That said we are still looking for more people, a never ending process it seems!

  • Marketing analyst
  • Financial analyst (help to make a great game economy etc.)
  • QA Testers (especially mac!)
  • Unity C# programmers
  • VFX / Designers / Animators

Things will really fire-up again once 3.x is out (should be a matter of days now) and we work exclusively on 4.x — stay tuned.

Podcast the GalaCast

Hi Folks,

GalaCast

The big news this week is that we started a podcast that will go behind the scenes of GalaCollider. We start off with Trevor and Sebastian the game developer and game designer behind GalaCollider, but you can expect in future episodes more from other members of our team, like lore and programming:

Once we have a few more episodes we will get things up on itunes as a real “podcast”.

Balance changes for November 1st

Our cards have also just undergone another bigger balance change round and we’re moving some of the current cards in the demo/starter deck out from the demo deck and to the core set while putting some cards planned for the core set into the starter deck. Some cards are even switching sides! (a topic for another time)

Deck building and game length

We’ve also been having fun with deck building lately, just with plain text files that we load up into the game. This did uncover some issues with game length where stalemates can happen between high level players on maps with abnormally low star counts. To address this we are experimenting with stars being generated rather than claimed and also a smarter map system where the star values of each map are now calculated based on the map generated rather than a fixed number based on the number of sectors.

We want most games to last around 30 to 60 minutes, unless you opt for a really large map (and therefore know what you are getting yourself into!) – these changes should be a step in the right direction to ensure that game length does indeed remain within these constraints.

You can watch a recent game where I ran a custom deck with lots of frigates and the map had too few stars on it to trigger a star victory. The result was a really fun game, but it lasted too long for what we want the game to do.

Granted this is with zero turn timer in place, which will really help to speed up the game, but even so a game like this needs to reach conclusion in fewer turns:

Other news

Over the last week we worked out the last of the critical bugs on 3.x and now we are just knocking off all the final major and minor bugs before we begin work in earnest on 4.x.

Work on the deck building part of db.galacollider.com has begun.

Sebastian has been busy getting the graphics ready for the giant design overhaul in 4.x.

Finally we also submitted our game to IndieCade, Magfest and IGF recently. Wish us luck!

Looking for

We are currently looking for:

  • More Alpha Playtesters
  • QA Testers
  • Marketing analysts / social media / strategists
  • Unity3D VFX animators

Thanks for tuning in!

Updates and self reviews

Hi everyone,

Screen Shot 2015-10-17 at 2.21.47 PMWe are now done with new features on demo3 and doing only bug fixing on it until it is stable. The key features in Demo3 will be:

  • new replay engine shows you the moves and cards played by your opponent
  • tool tips tell you about the game when you play for the first time
  • new graphics for sectors you haven’t revealed yet give you more information about what to expect
  • custom maps including random and reflected layouts. Each sector can now have its own mini deck!
  • lots of balance changes, in particular tech2 and 3 curved down and colony ship costs adjusted

Outreach

Sebastian wrote a Gamasutra article that reviewed what went well and not so well on our recent Kickstarter.

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 11.52.02 AMJayce Stock and Cedric de Leeuw have been added to our team. Jayce is our new voice on twitter and Cedric you will know as someone who made an amazingly cool fan videos for us. Cedric is helping us to make a nice video for competitions and to send to investors.

Investors is our biggest focus right now, and getting the core game completed sufficiently enough that we can present it and submit it to various conventions for prize considerations.

Otherwise we have a podcast recording done! So by next week this should start appearing.

 

Phoenix project

Hi everyone, so our Kickstarter has closed, but we are still here! Working as hard as ever on getting the game done.

Yes, it is sad that we didn’t raise the funds. Does this make our life harder? It sure does… but we aren’t giving up hope. We’ve been working on securing some smaller sources of funding to help ensure things can continue. Some changes in the team and our tools have taken place in our natural progression of the game’s evolution.

We’ve been a bit silent the last couple of weeks but this will soon change again as we resume blogging at least once a week with updates again.

Your voice

We got a lot of great results on our survey, but we could do with some more answers. Our sample set is still a bit light. If you have 5 minutes to fill out this survey about our previous Kickstarter it would be really appreciated! We want to know you and what you think.

What has GalaCollider been up to?

Today we are happy to report that the Demo3 build is making huge progress. We have the following features coded and being tested:

  • New lobby system shows you running games and online players
  • Brand new user registration system
  • Tool tips show up if it is your first time playing that guide you how to play
  • You now see a replay of your opponents moves and cards played
  • Several new ship modules required for new cards we will be adding

In addition we are happy to announce that we have:

  • The first version of our online deck builder website done
  • A new map editor that will allow us to make advanced unique maps
  • A new design for the game UI underway

db.gc

Deck Builder

The first release of our deckbuilder is up! For now you can look at all the cards in our demo decks. Later on we will be adding more cards from the core set here, and eventually also the ability to save and load decks. As well as comment on them and so forth.

Big thanks to our DB.GC team for helping to get this up!

New map editor

We stream games and developer sessions on our twitch channel. Which we then publish on our Youtube channel.

New UI work

Now that we know we don’t have the funds to make a 3-level zoom UI we still need to improve the current UI of the game to look good! We plan on improving it in steps, and the first step is getting rid of the developer graphics (no offense Chris) and instead putting in place something that might look a little better. This is by no means finished, but here is the first rough draft of the new design for the planets and their connections – what do you think?

(The gray rectangles near the center lava planet are where the 3d models of ships will go)

Space UI

Patreon

Are you sad our game wasn’t funded? Do you believe in us and want to help us get our game out? It’s not easy working on an indie game, especially one where we have a lot of artwork we need to secure.

Well I launched a Patreon page a few days ago. It is asking if you want to support me as a designer, working on this game (and some other board games). I don’t have a lot of expectations, but I am offering pretty good rewards. Free digital content if you are my patreon, even physical copies of games I work on if you help me at $25/month – but even $1 a month is super appreciated and helpful. Would you be my patreon?

Developer Podcast?

Would you be interested in a podcast I run once or twice a month that goes into game design? It would be a show where either I, or others from the team would jump in and we would talk about important choices and creative moments we had since the last update.

Things like: why were colony ship costs changed in Demo3? What is the Game Arc of GalaCollider and why are certain values set the way they are because of it? What design challenges have we had since the move to simultaneous turns? Why was workshop changed to buff attack instead of hull on Sylith ships? What are our plans for designing arcs and blocks of sets in GC?

Does this sound interesting to you? It does take time to make one… so let us know!

Team

Since the KS we’ve had 3 new people join our Playtest team, we created a new HR team, promoted two team members to coordinate their areas, a new team member to help create an active voice of ours as a whole on Twitter and added a new junior programmer to the Unity3D C# team. It hasn’t been all growth though, in some teams some people have left us or we’ve moved them around to other areas. We are basically refining and remolding ourselves.

Here is our current list of open positions:

Creative positions: Sebastian has been doing all of these things for some time, it would be good to expand the team so Seb can focus on game design and direction!

  • Art Director
  • Designer
  • Animator

In our outreach team we are looking for:

  • Market Analyst
  • Social Media Marketing (Facebook, reddit)
  • Copywriter

The development team is looking for:

  • QA Testers
  • Alpha Playtesters
  • Programmers (Unity3D C# OOP)

Our production team is seeking a new:

  • Art Producer

And finally our website could do with someone dedicated to do:

  • Webmaster (supervise and take care of our website)

Do you fit one of these titles? Let us know!