Infinity Development: March EditionHello Infinity Warriors,
Today we start the first of a string of new communication methods that I’m calling “Infinity Development” statements.
Previously you would have heard of this referred to as the Q1 Statement, which is not the method of communication we would prefer. The Q1 statement was taking far too long to get the information together for you, and we realized something along the way.
Essentially a Q1 statement would be a culmination of 4 months of work, taking a good long while to get out, and would essentially only be useful for the “Hyper Connected” player. Meaning for anyone who’s your average casual player that doesn’t care too much to be connected to Lightmare and just wants to play the game for funzies, they’d see this kind of communication and go to global chat and ask for a TL;DR.
Not saying that’s a bad thing, but creating communication and information that’s pretty much only going to be valuable to a hardcore demographic is very limiting in it’s overall potency.
I wanted to provide a more concise, more relevant form of communication that was more globally applicable to all users. Not just ones that are frequent forum-goers. So that’s what this communication will be, something that’s more to the point, easily understandable, and will be more frequent than 4 times a year along with covering substantially less information as a result.
More concise and relevant information, more frequent opportunities to post, and easier to get this amount of information to you guys in a more streamlined fashion.
For those that ARE looking for a TL;DR, just scroll to the bottom. If you want more info, keep reading.
Now, let’s move on to the information itself so we can get through what’s happening with the current dev cycle.The Infinity Wars Team grows with 2 more Warriors
So we’ve got two new hands on deck to support the bug fixing efforts, and issues affecting the core player experience. These fine gentlemen will assist us in optimizing, polishing, and spraying those RAID cans everywhere.
Say hello to Du-z, and TheMoot. Both of them will be joining our client programming side of things.
With the inclusion of these lovely gentlemen, this frees up our processes a bit more. We get to work on bugs as well as designing at the same time….it’s like we’re in heaven! More info on THAT subject below.
Please welcome them into the fold, and look forward to their good work in the coming weeks.Oppression and Foundation set designs/concepts
Let’s talk about what’s happening with the Design aspect of the game. Foundation Set:
So the last time you heard about this was when we introduced the concept of “Rotation”, and we didn’t really give you too much to go on with what it actually means.
The Foundation Set is meant to keep cards and mechanics that we deem a “foundation” to the game in circulation at any given point regardless of what Chapter (Block) we’re in. Treat IW2013 as the first “Foundation” set of Infinity Wars, as Rise marks the start of the Rise “Chapter”.
Not all cards will stay, and there may even be some new cards in Foundation, but the primary purpose is to serve as a buffer for all future sets, along with assisting new players reduce the barrier to entry and allowing existing users to stay relevant in any Chapter.
Any card that is re-printed in a Foundation Set that you have an original copy of is something you can use. Consider it a legacy version of the card, but so long as it’s in legal circulation, you can use whatever version of it you own.Oppression Set:
The groundwork for your next full set of cards has begun in terms of design. Thanks to having a few more hands on board, designing a set of cards doesn’t detract from the overall process of day to day workflows. What does this mean for you? It means that we’ve been able to manage our time much more optimally to allow for re-iteration of our own designs.
It means we’re able to put forth designs, test them out, and if we feel we need to re-iterate on anything we have much more freedom and time to do that now. Then we can move into playtesting, re-iterate/tweak where necessary, and release to you a quality set of cards.
One other little note for both of these things. We’ve developed some new tech that allows our artists to have some more freedom with the artwork, as well as reducing the asset load of the cards themselves. So it means that not only will the Foundation Set introduce new artwork for cards you’re already familiar with, but it also means that both of these sets will mark brand new ways of bringing our cards to life.Drafting
One other thing to be aware of is how we’re looking at the Global Draft pool as we move forward in development. It’s currently not in a place we want it to be with a bunch of cards that will pretty much never be picked in the pool just ruining some user’s picks.
With the advent of the Foundation Set, we wanted to let you know what’s happening with the Draft pool. The Draft pool will consist of Foundation, Order, and Oppression.
One of the first questions I’m sure you’ll have is “Won’t that make the draft pool ridiculously small?”. Well let me give you some info that’ll help you out. It’s important to remember that the primary reason we’re doing this is so we can more tightly control the draft environment and ensure it continues to be fun throughout each Chapter.
Now for that question of whether or not the draft pool will be ridiculously small. The Foundation Set will include around 200 cards consisting of mechanics and cards we felt needed to stay in the game at all time from sets that will eventually rotate out so that we can keep the game in a nice, even environment.
This gives us the control we need to make sure draft isn’t flooded with control cards or has one too many factionless in your lineups, etc. We’re hoping this makes the experience of drafting a deck much more fun for everyone, and we’ll continue to monitor it once this goes through.New Player Pipeline and Core Player Experience
Lightmare is always looking at the best ways to improve Infinity Wars for the long-term. Thanks to the incredible amount of feedback the community provides us, we are looking at very specific areas of the game that we would like to optimize.
In the coming weeks, discussions internally will focus on (but not be limited to) the below topics. The discussions will involve large amounts of player feedback, design structures, and feedback loops for how we can assist all manner of players in better enjoying Infinity Wars.
*As a new player coming into the game
, it’s important they learn things the right way. Infinity Wars takes a different mentality to play the game at a high level, and we’re going to take a look at those first 2 hours of a newbie coming into a brand new card game.
*There’s a big shift in play experience
going from the Campaign out into the scary, frightening world of PvP. We want to look at how we can smooth out that experience and reduce the amount of shell shock, and help that first Mass Death that you didn’t avoid sting a bit less.
*As any card gamer will tell you
, one of the primary driving factors is….well….cards. A collection is one of our greatest possessions, especially one that we can be proud of. One of the things we’re going to be discussing is the overall experience of building something you can be proud of. It’s a very open ended discussion, but an extremely important one.
*When you become a veteran player
your mentality shifts. Your collection is satisfying, your deckbuilds get tweaked and optimized consistently, your friends list can get annoying. What keeps you logging in? What keeps you interested?
These are all discussions happening actively internally, and we wanted to make sure you knew what was going on with our processes there. Of course this isn't the first time these discussions have been had, but the discussion this time takes the role of getting the solution rather than simply identifying the issue. Once some development has come out of these discussions we’ll be able to let you know what that looks like.
One thing I’d like to point out, as I know there will be some questions on this front, is where “Feature” development is at. The word “Feature” can cover a wide variety of topics and I won’t touch on each one of them as it will mean something different to each one of you.
At present we would love to work on features and content, however we must be very real with ourselves. Developing features and content will pull more people into the game, and give all of you some more ways of enjoying Infinity Wars, however we can’t leave the player experience in it’s current state. Before we complete work on any new features or content, we need to make sure that the core experience of Infinity Wars works.
Beyond that point, we get the opportunity to do some things we’ve been wanting to do for a long time. Thanks to having 2 new bodies, a better internal process of handling bugs and streamlining time management, everything is going in an extremely positive direction.
So thank you to all who have stuck with us and continue to check back with what we’re up to. All of your feedback, all of your posts and questions, even just the random thank yous help us more than you can imagine.
We’ll see you back here next month for some updates, and I’ll see you on the battlefield!TL;DR List
- Monthly instead of quarterly statements to make smaller, more easily conveyable communications.
- Two new dudes behind keyboards spraying RAID cans.
- Oppression and Foundation are getting designed and they’re gonna be sexy as puffy.
- Draft pool will consist of Foundation, Order, and Oppression once Oppression comes out to make the draft pool better for everyone.
- We’re discussing some key areas of the New Player and Core experiences to polish up and streamline the game. We’ll send out more information on that subject once development comes from it.
- Experience before content so that content works for more players. This is possible for us to accomplish thanks to having more people on hand.
- This is likely going to edge on the longer side of these kinds of communications.
- The war between Yobo and Puffy rages on. There will be no survivors.