Developer Update #5 2021 Roadmap
(This post is a repost from our discord at 01/30/2021 )
Happy Belated New Year @everyone
We hope you all had a fantastic holiday, the team have all been hard back at work for a while now and we are all very excited for 2021.
In this developer update we are going to be going into a lot of detail about the coming year and what we have planned. Firstly I will quickly outline the state of the game currently before moving into the nitty gritty of our roadmap.
Combat: Currently the combat is in a great state, the developers are racking up play time nightly with multiple hour play sessions, just because we are having such a blast. We have actually had to stop ourselves at times because well there is work to be done and because we want to get this game into your hands.
Replacement of the combat animations are almost complete. The 2 handed weapons play, and look quite good. 1 handed weapons still need to be improved but overall it's getting much more presentable.
Art: With the integration of our new texturing workflow from last update being finished, the improvement in quality of our textures is massive and our armour has never looked so good.
Blood details have now been added and is a great visual representation for when someone has either been hit or is almost dead.
Our tier 1 armour is currently being recreated to be more inline with our other armour design choices so that nothing feels out of place. Look forward to seeing some photos/models soon.
Programming: Since we have last spoken we have had another addition to the team, a fantastic programmer who will be working alongside Mr Z. As combat has been our number one priority we have not wanted to pull Mr Z away from his work, if we don't have to. With our new team member, we will be able to start working on systems that will bring the survival side of the game closer to fruition.
Firstly, a little bit of backstory so you can understand our mindset, so you might have a better understanding of why we are making the choices that we will go into below.
Everyone working on Renown are avid gamers that have all experienced what it is like to be handed a game that is basically unplayable when you are told or made to believe that it wouldn’t be the case and sadly this happens far too often. This is something that we want to avoid at all costs. We only want to hand you something that we feel you will enjoy, even if it’s for testing purposes and doubly so if those testers have made a donation to be a part of it.
So the question we asked ourselves, was how can we bring funding into the game so we can all work on it full time while delivering something that players will enjoy?
The answer we arrived at, is what we have coined as “Modules”. A survival game can be broken down into two very distinct groups of mechanics, those that revolve around combat and those that revolve around building and crafting. We believe if you hand someone a survival game, in which one of those two groups are unplayable, it overshadows the other systems that could work perfectly and just creates an unenjoyable experience.
The main philosophy behind the team deciding on creating a modulated release plan is that; on one hand we can test and refine each and every system separately without other less refined systems getting in the way. And on the other hand it allows players to take part in the very important testing process and hopefully still be able to enjoy themselves. We feel that if we quickly incorporated all of our systems that are being developed into a survival mode from the start, the testers will not be able to enjoy themselves.
The order the modules will be released will be very similar to the order below but things are of course subject to change. Nothing here is set in stone, but is our attempt at showing the community our mindset, Ideas and a rough plan.
Dueling Module - Single Combat Refinement
The development team feels the combat is in a great place at the moment and we have only heard good things from our early personal testers, that include both players completely new to this style of combat and those that are very familiar with it.
What is the “Dueling Module”
The dueling module will start initially as a simple FFA server with a system where players can initiate a duel and be moved into a secluded section of the map where they can have a 1v1 without the ability for other players to interfere but will still be able to spectate from the side lines.
What will the “Dueling Module” be testing
It is absolutely crucial that Renown has a balanced and stable combat system and because of this it is integral that it works effectively before introducing secondary systems.
A dueling server will work as the perfect environment to quickly and effectively hammer out any issues with the combat system while providing a fun and competitive environment for our testers.
Deathmatch Module - Multi Opponent Testing
What is the “Deathmatch Module”
This module will be a typical deathmatch mode, 2 teams fight to the death.
What will the “Deathmatch Module” be testing
As Renown will be a survival game, group fights must function properly and be enjoyable. The deathmatch module will serve to replicate open world fights between two groups both indoors and outdoors. This will allow us to “stress test” player counts, and work on balance when larger groups of players are involved.
Ranking Module - Stat Tracking Testing
Depending on the amount of invested interest this module could be introduced earlier.
What is the “Ranking Module”
We will be introducing a ranking system inside the current modules open to players. For example in the dueling servers, players will be able to choose when they opt into a duel with someone if they wish it to be a ranked match. Once both parties agree, the outcome will affect a persistent score during testing. By this we hope to add a sense of competitiveness and skill, to increase the testing experience for players.
What will the “Ranking Module” be testing
The stat tracking system planned for renown is our way of introducing a competitive element into the open world survival genre. As we feel this is a very important unique system to renown we want to get this working early, and over time we will slowly add more features to this system. By the time survival mode is open to players we want this system to be in full effect. The game is called Project Renown after all.
Initial Raid Module
What is the “Initial Raid Module”
The raid module will be the last main game mode introduced before the survival mode is released. This game mode will be round based, 2 teams will start in two opposing identical pre built castles, Inside each base will be a limited amount of weapons, armour and siege equipment, the objective of this mode is to capture the enemies banner deep inside their castle.
With the introduction of this game mode we will be incorporating our inventory and raiding systems.
What will the “Initial Raid Module” be testing
Inside Renown we want players to be able to enjoy raiding and take part regularly, for this to be achieved our raiding system must be extremely well balanced, as we have many ideas on how raiding could take place. We will use this short round, base originated game mode, to test these ideas quickly and nail down which method is best suited for our survival mode in the shortest period possible.
Expanding the Raid Module
When you think about a survival game there is a very clear progression, you start with nothing, you farm items, you create gear and a base, you fight others and you either survive or lose everything and then the server wipes and you start again. There is no reason why this process couldnt be compressed into a short game mode i.e. the raid module.
What is the “Expanded Raid Module”
Once we have settled on the intricacies of how our raiding system will work, we will begin introducing the rest of the survival features. The beauty of this raiding module is that we can effectively test the entire game play loop of the full game of renown in a short game mode.
For example instead of players starting with a set amount of gear, teams will have a leeway period where they must use tools to farm up resources and create the items that they will use in the following raid. How players use this time will dictate the outcome of the game, will one team spend more time being defensive, setting up outposts and reinforcing their gates and walls to out last the enemies resources or will they go on the offensive, creating as much raid equipment as possible, or rush them hoping to strike before the enemy have a chance to react.
What will the “Expanded Raid Module” be testing
Being the potential final stage of the raid module, this ultimately will be testing how well all our systems work together. It will serve as the perfect stage to tweak and test almost all of our main systems in one place and balance them accordingly for the full survival mode.
Base Building Module
What is the “Base Building Module”
This game mode will allow players to create whatever their heart desires without the need of farming resources or fighting.
What will the “Base Building Module” be testing
This Module is simply testing our building system and making sure there are not any major bugs we haven't found ourselves.
Potential Combination of Raiding Module
Depending on how well both the raiding and building modules function, the option for allowing players to build their own castles in the leeway period of the raiding mode could be introduced.
Survival Mode (Full Game)
At this point in development all the crucial systems required for the full survival part of the game. will have been tested heavily and refined to a point that is ready for the survival mode.
When we are at this stage we can release Renown into early access and be confident that players will have a great time on the road to full launch.
How will the modules be released and how can I get access?
Players who believe in us and our game can donate to us via purchasable tiers (almost all tiers will also include the full game on release) and will receive testing keys. Depending on the tier you buy in at, it will grant you access to a different stage of testing. Very much the same as a crowdfunding campaign.
The modules will be released over time in the form of servers (Dueling Module - AU 20/20)
When a new module is released new servers will appear, we plan to keep all released modules running simultaneously. For those who may have bought a tier that grants you entry at a later point don't worry you will still be able to play any module that has been released thus far.
What happens now?
Before we can greenlight the modules and open up the ability for players to get access, we want to make sure our servers can handle the expected load.
At some point soon we will be opening up a limited tier (Capped amount of patrons) on our patreon. These players will help us gauge if our chosen server provider is able to handle what is required while also doing preliminary testing.
There is still work that needs to be done before we set the ball rolling on any of this, the reason we are laying this out here and now is we have always wanted to be transparent with our community and this is the first time the amount of potential roadblocks have been low enough that we feel comfortable that nothing should hopefully change the plan, fingers crossed.
Thank you for reading !!!