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  #41  
Old 07-23-2014, 08:56 AM
paul-spacebears paul-spacebears is offline
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Originally Posted by Pedroapan View Post
You're on the front page! Congrats!

P
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Originally Posted by JCho133 View Post
Indeed! Great article, sounds like the TA folks are impressed
Thank you guys! I think that this forum thread helped a lot to get this very cool article

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Originally Posted by Misguided View Post
Looks interesting, but I can't help but wonder why cutting off your opponents tiles doesn't give your OPPONENT extra moves. Then you could make threatening moves and sacrifice in one place to gain strength in another, and would have to think more carefully about whether you really wanted to cut that group off and give your opponent extra moves. As it is, it really seems like most games will steamroll rather quickly.
First, I'd like to thank you for your interest!
Your idea is really interesting but I think that it would go too far in the opposite direction and be too much of a disadvantage for the offensive player, considering the game's current shape anyway
The gif and trailer are obviously simple examples to show the game's mechanics but it's in fact quite a challenge to cut a tile off its king and get bonus moves against a good opponent.
Getting the first bonus move is quite the fulcrum of the game, and while it's true that it can end up steamrolling after that (again, depends on the situation some nifty fortifications could still save you), it also gives a nice change in pace and a way to conclude the game, which I think are both important.
As the tagline says, it's a medieval board game from the 21st century, and immediate fun and replayability are important objectives for us. What we've seen so far is that people really like playing Kingdoms for those reasons and they can't stop saying "another quick one?"
But don't worry, we're also aiming to ship a game that provides strategic depth for more experienced players too! We just don't want Kingdoms to be too much of a game of slow back-and-forth.
Anyway, we're aware of the potential steamrolling and we have a couple ideas that we're going to test in the next few days/weeks to see how it goes, and we'll update you guys with the conclusions

I hope that this reply sheds some light on the matter. I'm really enjoying reading feedback and ideas from you guys and I can't wait to have more people like you playing the game!
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  #42  
Old 07-23-2014, 04:45 PM
Misguided Misguided is offline
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Perhaps it is simply the case that the promo video is a poor example, as the use of fortifications shown was completely pointless. That may be contributing to my perception of things.

At any rate, any chance of developing an AI?
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  #43  
Old 07-25-2014, 04:14 AM
paul-spacebears paul-spacebears is offline
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Yes, I agree that it was a very simple example to show the fortifications, not the best way to use them!
Fortifications become really important against more experienced players, in more complex situations.

Regarding the AI, the plan is to ship the game with one, so that you can play on your own, if you don't have any friends nearby or you're not connected to the internet! We have implemented a very basic one so that the framework is in place and we can focus on the logic to make it more interesting.
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  #44  
Old 08-09-2014, 11:06 AM
paul-spacebears paul-spacebears is offline
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Hi guys,

Time flies and I realise that it's been a few weeks already since the last post so I'd like to give you an update on a few things!

First, we're super close to having a proper AI working! Max has been hard at work on its implementation and he's almost done. Here's how it works.
The AI creates a logical tree of the different possibilities and weights moves in order to pick the best one depending on the board situation and adapts to what the player is doing. The AI knows the basic actions (placing a tile and fortifying) but we are also defining specific patterns in several categories (starting, mid-game, finish) so that the AI knows what is the most interesting category to browse depending on the state of the game and can pull out cool moves.
If you guys are interested in this topic, we could probably write a more detailed post on our blog!

Next, the gameplay.
We've been playing and showing the game a lot lately and we've had super interesting feedback on the gameplay from fellow game designers and experienced board games players.
We were focused on tweaking the gameplay to fix the potential steamrolling and more globally increase the tactical depth. We think that the game has reached a state where it plays better than ever before. It's also simpler to understand! Now you only get a single bonus move per group of tiles cut off their king. The max is still 2 though, so if you manage to cut two different groups of tiles off their king, you can take a really big advantage. But that's super rare and if it happens, it probably means that you'd better be finishing this game quick to play another one.
It obviously still needs testing to make sure that there's nothing deeply broken that we don't see yet, but I wanted to discuss it with you regardless as we're excited by what we've experienced in our playtests so far!

As you can see in today's Screenshot Saturday, we also removed the outer tiles which were not used anymore. The board is now smaller (5*5) but also larger on the screen so it is a lot better to play on an iPhone. And with the gameplay tweak discussed above, the game feels tactically deeper than before.
I actually succeeded to come back from a very difficult situation against Max during a playtest session yesterday, where he cut me off and got 3 moves for his next turn. A well positioned fortification stopped him to get another bonus move, letting me come back and eventually win the game! I wish you'd see that!

It brings us to the topic of sharing replays of your games. We've been looking at implementing Everyplay but as it turns out, it is not compatible with how we develop the game if you're interested in the technical details, we're not using Unity nor OpenGL but a native iOS framework called UIKit, which is a lot less usual for games but very good for what we do with Kingdoms.
Anyway, we'll have a look again at potential solutions when we're done with AI and the last few things we plan to polish before shipping.

Ok, last one I promise I've written a blog post about constraints and creativity in game design, which also talks about the genesis of Kingdoms. People seem to have enjoyed it so far and I'd love to have your feedback!

And as a little gift for your interest and patience guys, the latest mockup for the new tutorial design that I'm working on:



Bold text will indicate the gesture/action, and the coloured bold text will indicate the tiles you need to interact with.
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  #45  
Old 08-09-2014, 12:33 PM
Pedroapan Pedroapan is offline
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Lovely to get the update! Are you still aiming for an August release?

Pedroapan
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  #46  
Old 08-09-2014, 01:01 PM
paul-spacebears paul-spacebears is offline
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Unfortunately no, the release is slipping from August to mid/late September.
We still have a few things to finish and polish as you can tell, and we're also in the middle of creating the company, which is required to submit the app to the App Store under the name "Space Bears". It's not as fun as working on the game itself and it takes a lot of time and concentration to do it right but we're progressing!
Anyway, we don't want to keep pushing back the release unless it's really worth it and makes the game much better. As you can tell from the update above, we're getting there so we'll let you know as soon as we have a more precise date
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  #47  
Old 08-09-2014, 01:18 PM
Pitta Pitta is offline
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Awesome update!!!
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  #48  
Old 08-09-2014, 06:15 PM
JCho133 JCho133 is offline
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It's really interesting to read about your design choices, keep it up!
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  #49  
Old 08-10-2014, 12:07 AM
DocPop DocPop is offline
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I feel like such a fool... I was loved what you showed in the original post that I went straight to iTunes to try to buy it... couldn't find it and of course finally realized I was in the coming soon section of the forum.

So... what I'm saying is I can't wait for this game! Thanks for sharing.
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  #50  
Old 08-11-2014, 04:12 AM
paul-spacebears paul-spacebears is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitta View Post
Awesome update!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by JCho133 View Post
It's really interesting to read about your design choices, keep it up!
Thanks guys, we're glad you liked it

Quote:
Originally Posted by DocPop View Post
I feel like such a fool... I was loved what you showed in the original post that I went straight to iTunes to try to buy it... couldn't find it and of course finally realized I was in the coming soon section of the forum.

So... what I'm saying is I can't wait for this game! Thanks for sharing.
Haha thank you very much! If you want to hear from us when the game's released, you can follow us on twitter or subscribe to our newsletter: http://tinyletter.com/spacebears
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