DEV DIARY №19 - STORY LINE, POI AND NEW CONTRACT SYSTEM
Good afternoon, it's The Crust with you again!
We've been quiet for a long time and it's time to tell you about what's changed in the meantime.
Spoiler - a lot, and only a fraction of the project's massive changes fits into this dev blog
Base Building fest and its outcome
Earlier this year, the alpha version of The Crust was made available publicly for the first time as part of the Steam Base Building Fest and you sent us a huge amount of feedback and suggestions about the game. Also, you've helped us understand what does work well and what needs improvement in the current game design. You've found out bugs and told us which parts of The Crust you enjoyed the most. Many of you have joined our Discord community and continue to help us with testing and contribute your ideas to the game.
Thank you, you guys are amazing!
After public testing, we carefully structured player feedback and suggestions, identified key challenges, and went to work.
So, what has changed since that time?
Adaptive conveyor routing system
Now, constructing lengthy conveyor belts is more convenient than ever. Our intelligent "pathfinding" algorithm streamlines the process, enabling you to choose just the beginning and endpoint in your production chain. The game will then calculate the shortest route, skillfully navigating around obstacles. Building on this mechanic, we've incorporated features to modify the conveyor's rotation angle and direction. Additionally, you can easily toggle the new pathfinding algorithm on and off using hotkeys.
New Storyline Mode
In The Crust, a significant addition is the story campaign, seamlessly integrated with the game's core mechanics. This update brings voiced characters, a comprehensive quest log, and an in-game encyclopedia to enrich the player's experience. You'll no longer simply land on the Moon with drones and resource containers; instead, you'll immerse yourself in the lunar events of the late 21st century. The campaign intertwines with base development and lunar exploration, creating a cohesive lunar adventure.
Exploring lunar Points of Interest
Players will have the chance to explore diverse points of interest spread across the global lunar map, delving into the uncharted and enigmatic realms of the 22nd-century moon. Roam through concealed research facilities, unravel the mysteries of distinctive structures, and immerse yourself in the moon's mysterious ambiance as you approach solving the main question of the story campaign.
Each discovery introduces its own set of challenges and surprises, heightening the excitement of your journey.
Meet the Characters
In this update, you'll encounter captivating characters, each with their unique stories, challenges, and personalities. Engaging with them will enable you to fully immerse yourself in the vibrant game world. From seasoned engineers to brilliant scientists, every character contributes their distinct elements to your lunar adventure.
Decisions that Influence Gameplay
In addition to standard dialogues, players will encounter choices that carry consequences affecting gameplay. As you advance in the game, you'll confront decisions with far-reaching impacts. Will you opt for pragmatism or compassion, embrace risk or seek stability? Your choices will mold the storyline's progression, whether it leans toward scientific exploration, financial prosperity, or other objectives.
Ultimately, it's the player's responsibility to answer the question: "What is the future of humanity? Is it worth remaining on Earth?" The repercussions of your choices will reverberate throughout your lunar journey and wield significant influence over its climax.
Your role as the director of a lunar company gains even more significance. Your decisions and resource management will impact not only your survival and progress on the Moon but also the destiny of Earth. Choose your path wisely.
Contracts system rework and Fractions system added
The results of the February test made it clear that the contract system is not easily understood by players, and its interface is not user-friendly enough. That's why decided to redesign everything from scratch.Was: Became:
We've overhauled the contract system based on player feedback and our own gameplay vision, making it more intricate and user-friendly. The system's structure has been revamped; now you engage with various organizations instead of individual contracts. By fulfilling these contracts, you nurture relationships with each organization and enhance your overall reputation within the game world. Relationships between organizations are also influenced by factors such as competition, ideology, and politics. Be aware that not everyone may appreciate your close ties to a private military company or ultra-environmentalists. Consider these dynamics as you embark on your next "profitable" mission.
Fractions: Contracts and Profitable Offers
Certain organizations have a profound impact on the game's story and world, so exercise caution when forging relationships with these factions, as they will significantly shape the course of the story campaign.
Currently, interaction with factions occurs through the contract window and dialog boxes. However, our future plans include introducing rival factions directly on the moon. Players will have the opportunity to engage with them on the global map, competing for resource-rich areas, contract fulfillment, trade, and influencing critical decisions in both primary and secondary quests.
The Earth's dependence on the Moon and Stability
In a forthcoming update, we're introducing mechanics that will enhance the game world's dynamism, with your actions on the Moon directly impacting the stability and prosperity of Earth
Supplies from the Moon: In your role as the lunar company's director, you'll execute contracts and transport resources to Earth. The reliability and punctuality of these deliveries will play a crucial role in upholding stability on Earth
Impact on Earth: Your decisions will have a direct impact on Earth's stability rating. If lunar supply operations face too many disruptions, Earth will encounter issues and obstacles that will significantly influence your gameplay experience.
We've introduced a sandbox mode to the game, which is still under development. Alongside the captivating story campaign, players will soon relish the liberty of unrestricted construction. The sandbox mode offers the flexibility to select a landing site and fine-tune various starting parameters. You can customize the resource map generator, starting points of interest, difficulty settings, and AI influence to your liking.
What does this mean for you?
Unleash Your Creativity: Build and nurture your lunar base according to your personal preferences. It's the ideal canvas for those who aspire to craft their distinct lunar outpost and let their creativity shine.
Fine-Tune the Challenge: Within Sandbox mode, you'll wield complete command over the game's difficulty settings. This grants you the ability to tailor your gaming experience precisely to your tastes - ranging from a creative mode with minimal constraints to a demanding survival mode that puts your skills to the ultimate test.
Challenges for All: For players seeking an intensified challenge, we'll offer nuanced difficulty settings that will inject excitement (or perhaps some hair-pulling frustration) into your journey. Only the most tenacious will emerge victorious!
A Very Closed Beta Test and plans for the near future
This represents just a slice of the game's transformation during the last six months. We'll delve deeper into additional enhancements in upcoming development blogs. In summary, The Crust has expanded, grown livelier, embraced more vibrant visuals, enhanced player intuitiveness, and increased responsiveness to your actions.
And at this very moment, we are conducting an active closed Beta test, which is open to everyone interested. To join, simply complete the form available at the following link:Closedplaytest
We have now completed the first chapter of the narrative.What the beginning of the game looked like in february: And what the start of the game looks like now:
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