This week we intend to release the first update to the Demigod engine test beta (beta 1-A). Under the hood there have been tons of changes made and we're beginning to make room for some of the more significant changes you'll be seeing in Beta 2 (beginning of November).
Here are some of the highlights:
My friend Soren Johnson has a great article entitled "the seven deadly sins of strategy games". The bottom line is to paraphrase Sid Meijer, good strategy games give players "interesting" choices.
The flags in Demigod are going to be core element to this because controlling these flags are how the different sides will gain tremendous advantages.
A good player (or team) would be able to quickly eliminate a new player or team simply by taking these flags and holding them long enough to overwhelm the enemy. This prevents the problem in many multiplayer games where even when you're playing against unskilled players, you're still committing a lot of time to the game. Yet, at the same time, the game mechanic is straight forward enough that it's intuitive to players why they're winning or losing.
The team is brain storming all kinds of different types of flags. For beta 1-A, we just did gold as a proof of concept.
This next change is going to be more controversial without some explanation. When someone posts about this saying how they hate this change, point them to this post. The idea is that we're starting to make room in the UI and in the balancing for lots of additional skills as well as skill buffing (where you enhance one of the existing skills with a modifier). So don't take this screen as implying that we're going to have some dull linear progression.
The second map is in. The mine map is somewhat smaller but has some interesting strategic conundrums.
So when will the beta be out? We are targeting this Thursday (basically we release betas on Thursdays typically).