The weekend of October 29th we had a great opportunity to partake in the local game development exposition TheGDEX[www.thegdex.com]
at COSI in Columbus, Ohio. For us, it was an chance to get a lot more people in front of our new version of Dark Horizons : Mechanized Corps (DHMC) for some play testing. Shows like this really gives us a great insight into where we are with the product and how well it plays for players experienced with the geand newcomers a like.
Many of the attendees that we spoke to had remembered playing a lot of the old school Mech games of the past, and were excited to see a new entry in the genre. Even speaking to the younger crowd that have not had a chance to play a Mech game before, the impression that we have come back with is that they are pretty excited about our game and what we were trying to do. Feeling their enthusiasm is refreshing to hear and really gives a sense that, yes there is still a market for mech combat simulators.
It should be noted that the version of the game we demo’d at TheGDEX was an early Alpha build that contains several new features and enhancements and is not the same version that is currently live on Steam Early Access. As many of you know from our past posts, we have been revamping the entire game (art and code) to bring the visual quality up to where we expect today’s games to be, and to add in some cool gameplay ideas and features. Our hope with demoing at TheGDEX was to get a feel for where we are with the new version, start laying the groundwork for planning on a BETA release on Steam to let those of you who already own the live game a chance to help us play test and be more involved with the process.
Overall we thought the feedback that we received was phenomenal. The biggest compliments that we received were with the new art and environments that we had available to play (we had 3 new levels in this build for TheGDEX). People also loved many of the features that we already have in the live version that is currently up on Steam right now, such as Mech customization and opportunities for strategic gameplay. Overall though to our team, the biggest and most telling set of feedback that we got was that people had fun playing the game, despite many features not being fully implemented yet.
So where do we go from here? Now that we have a solid pool of feedback, we are back in the office and getting back to work so that we can get a BETA release on Steam in the near future. We have a long list of bugs we compiled during the show and have already fixed the major ones we ran into. The goal for BETA 1 is to ensure that the game is at a similar state from a functionality standpoint as the current live version on Steam. Then we can begin optimizing, fixing issues found in BETA, and begin implementing many new features that we want to put in the game, including implementing a tutorial system to help players that are new to the Mech genre get into the game and succeeding faster.
Internally we are aiming to release a BETA version of this new overhaul to the game onto Steam in January 2017! So keep an eye out for some additional information as we get closer to the end of the year.
As always our team would like to thank each of you for continuing to support us and being patient while we go through this long process of updating and enhancing DHMC (much of which requires some core system and engine upgrades) . We hope that o you will be proud and excited for the work we have put into it and will understand the amount of work and effort that we have done over the past number of months. It is always a challenge for a small team to put together a game of this magnitude and we couldn’t do so without your help.
Thanks from the Max Gaming crew!
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