We’ve been in beta for a while now and I thought it would be a good time to reflect on whats been going on and share our plans for the next few months. It’s going to be a very busy and exciting winter for us and we’d like to be open and honest with you, as we always have. I follow most of the discussions we have on discord with our beta testers. I can honestly say, those discussions really do impact the way we prioritise upcoming changes to the game. That’s not going to change anytime soon, so please join in if you have some suggestions or just want to follow the discussions.
Since the beta went live
It’s been about 10 weeks since we sent out beta keys… so much has changed! For a start, just look at the 5-a-side and 11-a-side pitches and players.
The 2D camera view and zoom functionality is something that came very quickly after feedback from you guys. We’ve still got some adjustments to make to both pitches, but on the whole I’m really happy with how they look.
We’ve upgraded the servers and made our back-end code more efficient. As we add more into the game and as the user-base grows, more stress will be put on the servers. As a gamer myself I know there’s nothing more frustrating than lag, so we’ll try our best to keep on top of it!
Our main focus has been on the match engine. As I write this, we still have bugs but I think we’re past the worst of it now. Most bugs being reported now fall into these categories:
- Giving players the option to receive when they shouldn’t have one (fake blue)
- Struggling to receive or save the ball, due to unrealistic ball speeds
The objective of the beta was to identify these kind of bugs, so the match engine is stable once we go Early Access on Steam. We have completely redesigned the logic for receiving and ball speeds, so once they are developed and tested, we should be in a good place!
Winter is coming...
Here’s a taste of what’s to come. These are things that we definitely want to improve or add to the game. However, the order they get released will depend on a lot of other factors, including feedback from you!
This is the new logic for resolving “fake blue” as mentioned above. There is a lot more data being passed between client & server with this new design, so we may see some performance issues creeping in. We’ll try to stay on top of it.
The size of the pitches and some of the pitch markings aren’t quite right yet.
This is a pretty big one, which we’ve been working on for quite a while in the background. I’d expect the first draft to be done pretty soon. Then we can get your feedback before the noobs start arriving 😀
We’re still playing around with the design & placement of the commentary text. Again, this is one which would be good to get some feedback on. We’ll also be making the in-game chat easier to use.
At the moment it’s basically non-existent… so we’ll be adding in more auditing stuff so you know exactly how many credits are coming in and out of your account. There will be a redesign of how we present footballer slots to you, but that won’t be for a while.
Something else we’re looking to redesign. We want it to be impactful, but not overpowering. It resets after every quick/custom match, but in league matches it will have some carry over.
As mentioned above, the ball speeds in both modes need to be fixed. Shot speeds will also depend on your shooting attributes.
Before we go early access, we want to change how users find/join quick match lobbies. The new design will definitely suit players who look for matches during off-peak times.
Another thing which isn’t there yet, but something we want to introduce. We’re not reinventing the wheel here, just some useful half time and post match stats.
Got a lot of ideas on what we want to be improved. Translating them into AI code is a bit more tricky unfortunately. Obviously we want most games to have no bots, so this isn’t at the top of the priority list at the moment.
Given the long list of things on our to do list, we’re looking at early next year to go Early Access on Steam. Not everything on the list will be done, but the game should be in a good place by then. Until then, we’d really appreciate you guys trying out the game every time we release a new patch and letting us know what you think. Even once we go into Steam Early Access, there will still be regular improvements being made. You just won’t get as much free stuff as before… sorry 😀