So what now? After the alpha release.
As I said in the previous post, getting some good feedback on the first alpha release. So, what now?
Well, I’ve collected all that feedback into a large spreadsheet, classifying the bugs/issues based on priority, type of issues etc.
There’s a bit over 60 so far, which I’m going through and fixing as quickly as I can. As you can see from the stats, GUI issues are the majority right now.
Which is pretty much what I expected. The first real test of the GUI is when you open it to lots of people to hammer on. Developers are blinded by their own intimate knowledge of all the systems and design choices, they can’t see the points where their assumptions aren’t obvious to players very well. You need the feedback from people going in with a blank slate.
Once the GUI issues are sorted, I expect more bugs and balance issues to come rolling in. A good metaphor for a GUI is that it is like a window into your game systems. A bad GUI is like that window is dirty, obscuring the game systems seen “through” it. A great GUI is transparent to the player. Right now, in this rough state, the GUI is too “dirty”, which will prevent a number of players from digging too deep into the game.
So, in the interests of “cleaning the window”, my primary focus has been upgrading the GUI based on players’ feedback, concentrating on the issues that are resulting in player confusion or “what now?” moments.
Things like upgrading the Player Hand UI -
( old version for comparison )
And adding in animations to make it clearer to the player when and how they score OP (Objective Points), and to draw their focus to their OP Total.
I’m aiming to get a new version to testers later this week, hopefully Friday.