Devblog #3: First test aftermath

User testing

Jasper

Our first public test last week has completed. Showing the game you’ve worked on the past half a year is always exciting. With all the player feedback we’ve received after the test we went into the new week with a fresh list of tasks which we wanted to complete the next week.

We have received a lot of feedback about the maneuverability of the ship and that players got beached to often and the ship was not really maneuverable. So we knew what to do. We’ve implemented an anti-beaching mechanic which basically pushes you gently back into the water when you got stuck on the beach.

 

Another issue we are working on is a solution for the inevitable problem of a limited playerbase in the early release. As there are examples of 4v4 multiplayer VR games that have overcome the pitfall that is called “empty lobbies” we know that it is a matter of great effort and the right activities to let the player enjoy the time while waiting for other players to join. So we are working on a tavern where you can enjoy a drink and play some games with others while waiting for your lobby to fill up. Luckily there is no such thing as DUI on a pirate ship.

 

Cannons

Mick

The cannons have been stripped of their always visible UI which now dynamically shows when needed. The UI appearing on interactable objects on the ship can now also be turned off in the settings menu, this might be particularly useful when recording and you don’t want UI to ruin your shots.

 

Ship maneuverability

Mick

There have been some adjustments to navigating the ship. For one the sails are now slightly higher so it’s possible to see ahead while steering. While this makes it easier for the helmsman to navigate, it reduces the amount of communication between teammates. We’ll use the next test session to conclude if it improves the playability of the game.

Steering values were also tweaked so you have a little more control over your ship when turning.

Lastly, a pushback was added for when you accidentally beach a ship. When your ship comes to a complete halt on a beach you will get pushed back the way you came, giving you time to steer away from the island.

 

Overall small updates

Thijs

In the following weeks we will bring out a few quality of life fixes as well;

  • Spare fuse sticks have been added to the ships.If you happen to lose the one you began with you can now get a replacement from a barrel below deck!

  • Collision with objects on a ship’s deck has been updated as well, the items you drop on the deck won’t fall in the floor anymore.

  • Navigating the map should be a lot easier now that all the sandbank collisions around the islands have been corrected or fixed.

  • After receiving feedback about a global voice chat during the lobby-screen and the spawning phase on the starter island we’ve gone ahead and implemented this feature. Remember, no trash talking if you can’t back it up!

 

Expect these and many more quality of life fixes to roll out in the coming weeks. If we have missed a few bugs, please let us know via the forum!