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State Of The Game – May 2016

State Of The Game – May 2016

Hi,

My name is Mark, I’m the Game Director of Robocraft and CEO of Freejam. This post is all about explaining what’s going on with Robocraft’s development and to give you an idea of what you can expect over the coming months.

 

Post-Epic Loot

The past few weeks have been pretty mega for all of us here at Freejam.

The launch of Epic Loot was a massive endeavour for our 35-person studio. The expansion added a whole new progression system centering around loot, all of the weapons in-game were reworked and rebalanced to offer new combat depth and we changed multiple systems in the backend to make us more self-sufficient without relying on third party providers.

In every meaning of the word this expansion was absolutely HUGE for us and with its size came a very strong reaction from the community – some players loved the changes that came with Epic Loot and others did not. We’ve seen detailed and enlightening discussions about Epic Loot play out everywhere from the forums to the subreddit and all social channels in between. We genuinely feel blessed to have so many people who feel so passionate about Robocraft that they are willing to voice that passion socially – either in angry displeasure or in praise of our endeavours. When the five of us who started Freejam began the Robocraft journey we were worried about anyone caring about our little game at all, so we will never take for granted the amount of feedback we get today.

For us as a team, Epic Loot’s overall impact has been very positive. We have measured our biggest ever increase in the % of new users who install the game and are still playing 7 and 14 days later. Due to the removal of Tiers and rebalance of the game we also now have 5x as many players available to match-make together in all game modes, allowing us to create more game modes for you (something we’ve begun right away, you heard it here first, new game mode coming soon!).

It hasn’t all been cake and ice cream though. We know for a lot of you the state of the economy and balance currently isn’t perfect and like previous form suggests (as many of you have been with us since the beginning will know) we’ll continue to tweak things as we progress closer to full scale launch and out of Early Access. We’re not planning on adding Robits into Crates as we want to retain the focus on polishing and improving the Loot based economy as opposed to moving back towards a currency based economy. We are planning on improving the match-making to ensure large CPU mismatches do not happen, to offer you easier ways to recycle the things you do not want, to skip Crate animations then save them up and open them when you want to, to fast-forward long Crate opening sequences as a few examples.

I also want to use this opportunity to give you some more information on the chances of items dropping in Crates:

  • Legendaries are 5x more likely to appear in a Protonium Crate over a Bronze Crate
  • Legendaries are 25x more likely to appear in a Protonium Crate over a Rusty Crate
  • Legendaries are 2x more likely to appear in 1500 CPU matches than 500 CPU matches
  • There is zero chance of getting commons in 1500+ CPU matches in Gold, Diamond or Protonium Crates in favour of higher rarities

 

Next Steps

With Epic Loot complete, Phase 2 complete, and our new back-end technology fully up and running, the entire development team is free to focus on improving the game and delivering more of the things you want. We have already started on this and we’re focusing on five main areas:

 

Quality of Life

So many of you have asked about quality of life features and we’re finally able to get on and get some of them done for you. These ones are coming in this week’s update based on some things that users had requested from us before:

  • Commas to break up all big numbers in-game to improve readability.
  • Allow players to place movement components directly on the ground in the editor without the need to attach to a block first (including mech legs, tank tracks and other parts).
  • Added strafing movement capability for Mech Legs and Insect Legs.  We’re moving onto Hover Blades after that – i’ll talk about how this will all work on the forums in more detail.

And later this week, we’re really excited to commence our first community poll where you can vote on which ‘quality of life’ features you’d like us to add to the game next with a commitment from us to add them in the next possible update. Keep an eye on Robocraftgame.com for more details on how to cast your vote over the coming days.

 

Social Features

We’ve started a long program of work that we will release in steps to bring you a whole suite of improved social features. An overhauled chat system, an overhauled Platoon system and then finally Clans. We’ve been talking about Clans for so long now, and we’ve finally started the development of the building blocks that will allow us to eventually get these to you.

 

New User Retention

We will continue some of our focus on new user retention, but this time on finally doing the more obvious things that should help with this, for example adding a tutorial and an AI Bots version of game modes, better feedback to help users learn how to build good Robots and better feedback in-game to help them pick up and play more easily.

 

More Content – Maps, Game Modes, Weapons, Blocks, Modules

Stepping up our program to bring you more content, more maps, more game modes, more blocks, and improve the quality of some of those you feel need updating.

 

More Community Interaction

We want to increase our interaction with all of you with Community Events (the first one coming later this week), community polls on what QoL features should be implemented next, and also an additional Community Manager to work alongside Drognin to double our ability to process your feedback and get responses to you.

Finally I want to finish with a huge, HUGE thank you. Thank you for all the feedback, even the really angry stuff. Thank you for sticking by us through so many huge, fundamental changes to the game you love. I can honestly say the crazy, big ones are behind us now and it’s just cool stuff from here on in!

I genuinely hope we can repay you for all the dedication and support with quality delivery of some great improvements to the game coming up that you all will love.

Cheers,

Mark