Volume tools and beta date
3 months ago
– Thu, Mar 12, 2020 at 01:28:58 AM
Kickstarter tells me it's been two weeks since the last update. How does time even work?
Anyway, this extra month of development has started very well. Progress has been solid on all fronts, even if none of it is shiny enough to make new screenshots of yet :) (more assets gifs coming soon though!)
We can, however, announce that the date of the Beta release with be the 31st of March. We decided to take the whole month as every day really gives us a lot of opportunities to try and catch a few more bugs (don't worry, there will still be plenty for all of you)
Work has continued both on assets and also on the GM Blocks feature. GM Blocks are places to store settings, items, and notes only the GMs can interact with.
The primary board sync bugs were mostly ironed out, and this past week only a few minor sync related bugs have had to be dealt with.
I'm working with Ree for a few days on the features that still need finishing for the beta. We first tested concurrent building and then moved on to line of sight. Line of sight is the feature that finds out what creatures are visible from another creature's point of view. We use this both to know when to reveal creatures, but also we use it, in GM mode, to put small indicators above the heads of creatures who are in the line of sight of the creature the GM currently has selected. It's a simple approach, but I should write a dev log on this soon.
We have put out some dev logs, although this past week or so, I fear it's mostly consisted of "Yup, still working on the beta."
As well as the GM blocks, Ree has also started implementing the volume tool. This will be used both for selections and also for GMs when hiding regions of the board from players. Here is a preview:
Back soon with more!
Just checking in
3 months ago
– Wed, Feb 26, 2020 at 10:30:01 PM
Hi everyone, update time again.
Work is progressing well. Heckbo and Jason have been busy with assets. I've done work on how TaleSpire talks to the backend and am now focused on the bug that delayed the beta. Ree has been doing great work on atmospheres and Gm Block.
If you are into the nitty-gritty you can read about some of this stuff here:
We have also confirmed with BackerKit about the pre-order payment details and will be sending out an email to the folks that pre-ordered today. Once again if you didn't pre-order extra copies after the Kickstarter campaign, you can safely ignore this bit :)
We'll get back to work now, thanks for stopping by.
The delay - Part 2
4 months ago
– Sun, Feb 16, 2020 at 12:37:22 AM
Yesterday we posted that we realized we wouldn't be able to ship the Beta by the end of February. Since then, the level of support along with the community's genuine concern for our wellbeing has been deeply encouraging. Thank you.
We also mentioned we were going to have an internal meeting to work out a new estimate of how much time we would need. We've had that meeting, here is the result.
The Beta is now scheduled to ship at the end of March. This gives us four extra weeks to get the Beta to a point where meaningful testing can be done by the community. We have decided to make it the full month to minimize any chance of issues creeping up on us last minute this time around. We are diving into a lot of areas of the project quickly to try and route out any more unknowns. You'll be hearing about this in the dev logs over the next weeks.
Rest assured, it's still going to be a Beta, and so this post on what to expect still stands, but we'll have got through the game-breaking issues we are looking at right now.
We will also stick to our original plan and keep pre-orders open until the Beta goes live. We will be emailing the people who made pre-orders separately once we have made a couple of inquiries with BackerKit regarding when they charge cards.
As always, we are reachable, especially on the Discord, so do come and commiserate with us. Meanwhile we'll get back to making this something we can all make new stories in.
Again, thank you for letting us do this independently. We hope that this update finds you, and your projects, in good health and spirit.
Warmest regards from the team
 The bug that really crept up on me last week was a bug that caused the undo/redo information to go out of sync when you have multiple players building. This breaks the board more with every subsequent action and, as you can imagine, really sucks the fun out of playing. Worse still, it's not even a bug that gives valuable information to us, it's just broken. We know that it's fixable, but we also need to review all related code because this case stayed under the radar for a long time. We need to make sure it doesn't manifest anywhere else.
Some visual progress, but also something rather somber. A Delay
4 months ago
– Sat, Feb 15, 2020 at 02:28:31 AM
I don't post updates quite as much, but I do like to show what I've been working on, usually in the form of gifs on twitter or sneaking it into Baggers' posts. This particular update is in two parts. First of which is in the way of some progress. The first iteration of the new Atmosphere system is almost beta ready. For people who are familiar with the Alpha version of the game, knows about Atmosphere blocks.
These were literally boxes you could put on the board, click on and switch between different visual looks as well as switch between music and ambient tracks. They were premade inside of Taleweaver, and wasn't particularly flexible, although somewhat conveniently places. Or I guess they would have been if the players didn't see them, and wouldn't get stuck in them if they decided to walk through. This might all sound a bit confusing to others.
The new solution to this is having these settings exposed in the Atmosphere tab on the left side. So now, you can select a music track, an ambient track, SkyCycle, and a Post Process Color effect. These options can then be synced to your players as usual.
The Atmosphere blocks are still there though but now hidden behind the GameMaster Overlay.
Meaning you don't have to hide them from your players. In addition to having some preset atmosphere blocks to choose from, you can also create your own by dragging out a block from the Atmosphere settings tab (This part isn't entirely done yet).
And eventually, hopefully, also share combinations online via copy/paste. (later)
We're likely expanding the options depending on what makes sense for a later iteration. One that might also make it into the beta is Exposure control. (if it makes sense).
I'd also like to mention that Dwarf has been working on more music and ambient sounds! As well as new miniatures! Heckbo is working on a lot of new stuff, including things related to last week's water tweet!
----- Second part -----
Note to self: * deep breaths *
Now for the second part. The somber part, as I put it in the title. Not "dull in color," but rather "a feeling of deep seriousness."
As some of you might have gathered from Baggers' previous updates, we've hit some unexpected issues. (https://bouncyrock.com/news) Initially smaller items which put us behind schedule, but more recently some more significant ones which, although these are entirely solvable has some notable unknowns which are hard to estimate.
It is becoming increasingly clear that we're not going to meet the End of February estimate. (I'm using estimate here rather than "the deadline," for my own sanity).
It is just not realistic.
It took me, personally, way too long to see that. Blindly wanting to see a February Beta Release. If everything went perfectly, sure! But as we know, things seldom do.
Crunch can be a "useful" tool, and sometimes especially for indie developers, one could argue that it is necessary. But the value of increased productivity and focus quickly fades into increasingly harmful routines. And after just a couple of weeks, the benefits are gone, and you're just doing damage.
We're at this point; actually, we've stepped over that point and can about make it out in the distance. Behind us. This latest setback was the realization that we can't just brute-force the last couple of weeks and hope that we have something to cram out the door, potentially burning-out in the process.
So what does that mean?
We still haven't worked out all the details. We're having a meeting tomorrow about the subject and will be sharing our findings with you within the next day or so. From initial talks, we're probably looking at about 3-4 weeks past the original estimation. This would allow us to sort out the more daunting issues comfortably, but also do a bit of testing before it goes out to everyone. (It is very much a beta, but we do want it to be properly playable, even if a bit buggy)
So that's it. We know a lot of you are hyped for TaleSpire to be available, and this comes as a bit of a disappointment. We're right there with you, but we also hope you understand our decision to postpone the beta, just a bit longer.
Thank you all so very much for your amazing support!
TLDR: Beta release needs to be pushed, because of some newly discovered issues and fear of burnout from crunch. More information within a day or so.
PS: Another earlier experiment: (this is nowhere near play ready, just showing that it will be coming at some point)
Into the depths!
4 months ago
– Sun, Feb 09, 2020 at 01:20:07 AM
The work on the Beta continues in earnest. We've been feeling that deadline and Dev logs have been a little sporadic (sorry about that), but you can find the latest over here.
Other than saying we are still here and working, there isn't much to tell you news-wise, so instead, here is a peek at something Jonny has been working on.
It's still in a very experimental stage and will go through a bunch of revisions even after it's release. However, we think this will go rather nicely with another asset pack we are currently brewing. More on that as it nears completion!
Hope this finds you all well.
Take care everyone.