Wednesday, September 2, 2015

SIX Report

Hey everyone! SIX was a blast and is now over. Thanks to everyone who came by and said hi and played Privateers. It was really fun to discuss the game with people. There were a lot of players who had as much enthusiasm about the idea as we do which is hugely encouraging.

We put together a special demo build for SIX which had a bit more linear of a story line in order to show off as many interesting features in as short a time as possible. If you want to give that build a try, we now have it online here...

Since this was my (Sam) first time showing a game at a convention, there was a ton of stuff to learn which was great. One of the things that I quickly learned was that it is hard to judge the difficulty of the game as the developer. For me, the demo seemed a bit on the easy side. I was able to win every time that I played without much challenge. However, with all the players who came through and played it only ONE of them was able to beat it. So, apparently the game is harder than I thought :-).

Privateers booth ready to show at SIX

Another issue was the quick approach-ability of the game. I noticed that the games that use Xbox controllers and had local multiplayer on demo were by far the most approachable for people wandering the expo. However, a rogue-like game with crew management has a reasonable learning curve by design, which makes it much harder for someone to just sit down and enjoy for 5-10 minutes of play. Kurt and I are thinking about how to improve this with better tutorial features and things like that, but it is just a hard problem to solve.

Privateers Banner
There was a lot of great feedback for the game that Kurt and I will be picking up over the next few months. The main areas of focus that I think became clear directions for improvement are the following...

  1. Improve the AI for crew and enemies
  2. Improve the UI to be easier to use and more pretty
  3. Add controller support
  4. More content!
  5. There were a few annoying bugs that showed up that we need to fix

Everyone enjoying the games at SIX

Overall, it was a really great experience. I really enjoyed meeting a bunch of other developers who were showing there, talking to gamers who enjoy similar games to me and getting a ton of great feedback. However, I will say that showing by myself for 12 hours long was EXHAUSTING and I think I am going to have to sleep in for a week to recover!

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