Wednesday, 26 November 2014

I've added "Awardments" and Cheats - and there's a Pay What You Want Deal for the next 4 days!

Survivalist will soon be available as a Pay What You Want deal on, with 10% of proceeds going to Scope, the disability charity. This only lasts from the 27th to the 30th of November, so don't miss it!

IndieGameStand have a feature on these deals called Beat The Average. You can choose what price you pay for the game, but if you pick a higher price than the average so far you get a bonus item. For Survivalist, I decided to add a Cheat Mode to the game. This Cheat Mode is available to anyone who completes the game, but you can unlock it early if you Beat the Average on the PWYW deal. The idea behind it is to enable players to have some silly fun with the game's engine. For example you can:
  • Customize the appearance (clothing, skin tone, face shape, gender, etc) of any character in the game
  • Spawn weapons, buildings and enemies
  • Max out your skills and go on a rampage!
  • View the entire map without the fog of war

Having added a cheat mode, I wanted to give people a reason not to cheat so I've introduced Awardments - aka the non-copyright infringing version of Achievements. If you use cheats, the game will remember it (and will mark your savegame accordingly) and prevent you from unlocking Awardments in that game. So you could give yourself an RPG and blast through everything to complete the game - but you won't get any Awardments from that playthrough.

(However, you can change your appearance without disabling awardments, as that has no effect on gameplay - except for your gender, which does affect a few things).

And of course, if the game gets on Steam the Awardments will be implemented as Steam Achievements.

Here's the Awardments screen in the menus:

I'm also trying out a new price point on PC of $4.99 US, as I often get comments saying it's worth more than $2.99, or that it's such a good deal at that price. And I think some people might assume there's less to the game than there really is, with the price being so low compared to other PC indie games. But if you don't want to pay so much, check out that Pay What You Want deal!

I'll aim to bring this patch (but not the price change) to the XBox 360 version in the next few weeks.

Monday, 10 November 2014

New patch released on PC with Pause/Fast Forward

There's a new patch (v23) out on Desura and IndieGameStand, which introduces the Pause and Fast Forward modes and Concrete Watchtowers which I mentioned in my last post, and some other nice things I'll describe below.  I had to release this a bit earlier than I was expecting as few new bugs were discovered that I wanted to squish.

One of the bits of feedback I've gotten is people often find they don't have enough bandages, whereas something I've found personally is I always end up with more molotov cocktails than I know what to do with.  So in this patch I've done two things:
  • Made it possible to use cloths by themselves as low quality bandages
  • Made it possible to craft "proper" bandages from a cloth and a bottle of cheap vodka as an alternative to molotov cocktails:

 Okay so it's not the most in-depth crafting system in the world, and it's not exactly original *cough* *cough* but it helps balance the game.

Another thing I've done is tried to improve Follow commands a bit.  There was often a situation where you'd want some community members to help you fight off an attack or something, but they were in a building and there was no easy way to get them to follow you - you can now do that with the Alternate Action button.


And when you had a large group it was sometimes quite hard to tell who was following you and who wasn't, so I've made it so that small arrows appear over your followers heads, and you see grey circles showing their health, for a short time after you switch characters or tell someone to follow you.

Here's the full list of changes:
    • Concrete Watchtowers for builders with Construction Skill level 5
    • Pause/Fast Forward feature (activated with -/+ on the keyboard or Down/Up on the d-pad - becomes available once the initial tutorial bit is completed)
    • a warning message if you transfer items to a zombie corpse that could get despawned
    • ability to tell community members in buildings to follow you with Alternate Action button
    • ability to use cloths as low-quality bandages, and to craft bandages from cloth+vodka
    • some hud elements to try and make it easier to tell who is following you
    • AI to make characters on supply runs restock with water etc at the base instead of just anywhere
    • bug where characters got teleported if you placed a building on top of their own location
    • bug where guards would not try to find more ammo if they ran out, and would instead try to melee-attack enemies
    • bug where, if you enclose an area with a fence, zombies could still appear inside it
    • exploit where characters could drink from wells that were under construction
    • exploit where you could get more construction materials by demolishing unbuilt buildings
These changes will of course make their way to the XBox 360 version but it might take a while.