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Posted 12/21/20 by AI Wizard

Release Progress

We're approaching the completion of our internal feature-complete build, OMEGA (Ω)! Here's how we're getting from where we are now to a playable version of Starfall.

Release Philosophy

Most games have an Alpha, then a public Beta, then they launch. This works well for large studios, but with smaller operations like us players feel shafted when a game is stuck in public beta for months and months - or worse, when an unfinished game is rushed to production to avoid the beta stigma.

To avoid this, we're taking the exact opposite approach. We don't know precisely when we'll launch, so we aren't going to declare a public alpha or beta. Instead, we're starting from omega. Each subsequent release will be opened to a slightly wider audience of testers and players and receive more and more polish as time goes on. When we're ready to call Starfall ready for prime time, you'll know.

With that in mind, let's talk about our first "release" - Omega.

Omega Release (Ω)

OMEGA (Ω) is our first release and will not be open to any players. This is because has absolutely no polish (for example, there's no attack button - you have to input attacker ID, weapon ID, and target ID into a form) so it's not at all enjoyable to play and difficult to test. Omega is on this list because it marks feature completion internally for us as a milestone and sets us on the road to launch. Omega was completed on December 22nd, 2020! (Check out the release notes here.) We verified feature completeness internally, which lets us move on to PSI.

Psi Release (ψ)

PSI (ψ) is the next release and first playable release. It will include the user interface and quality of life work you need to actually be able to play it. Psi will be open to folks on the Arke Industries Discord server for the purposes of testing. Major pieces of work to get Psi out the door will be UI work, major refactoring for performance, and filling out the tech tree, recipes, components and industrial processes to give you content to play with. We're targeting release of ψ sometime in January and will give you more updates as we get closer.

We are on track to offer the following in Psi:

  • Galaxy and Star System Maps filled with interactable objects like asteroids
  • Drones that can detect, move, shoot, mine, transfer cargo, and do industrial processes like mining, refining, manufacturing, and assembling more drones
  • Detection system taking into account everything in the Detection post on this blog
  • Combat system taking into account weapon type and active and passive defenses
  • Simple drone designing (create a blueprint by specifying a Hull and Components)
  • Player Organizations and Squads that can be created and joined
  • Market offers that can be offered and accepted to trade drones or cargos for other drones, cargos, or currency
  • Research system unlocking technology groups, tracks, and elements both for incremental improvements of components and brand new components

Later releases

As you may have guessed, we're going to continue going backwards through the Greek alphabet with our releases until we have a candidate that is suitable for formal game launch. Each release will have a slightly wider audience and more polish until we're totally ready for launch. Watch this space for more updates on Starfall!