Author Topic: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...  (Read 12111 times)

Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #45 on: May 02, 2013, 11:33:53 AM »
DF is a bit more complex in that you can set rules for individual dwarves, whereas here the rules are built into the unit type from the get-go.  But otherwise, yeah; I think there's a lot of similarity there.
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Offline PokerChen

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #46 on: May 02, 2013, 04:26:57 PM »
W.r.t. the previous comment round, I tried to read the passage as if I have had no prior information on Arcen Games. A lot of games-blurbs that claim to have depth and replayability, and I doubt that many of them would have actually tried to carry out a game-state analysis to back-up those claims. Words like "great freedom" can also be a moniker for "a whole bunch of things that you could conceivably also do but either fail or have no net effect".  Analogously, "variety of spells" being used to describe "fire-bolt, ice-bolt, and lightning-ball with largely identical mechanics". These implicit statements merely make a game sound good, with strict-truth being a bonus.

 Sorry if I'm making myself a arbitrarily difficult sell. :P At a price of $5, I and hopefully a significant number of people would buy it just for the ride (I hope that the mobile-gaming and flash-gaming industry haven't spoiled them).

Quote
I don't mean that in a snarky way: different things pique different people, so I'm just genuinely not sure what is the missing element for you and am trying to find out.
Categorising my reaction to the triumvirate, (1) is interesting-good, (2) is eh-evil, and (3) is fair-neutral (depends on what the unlock are). As you say everyone goes for different things - I'm a meta-gamer and am missing this from the blurb: "what's the game-state tree like?" That is, how many different paths can I walk in a game? This for me determines re-playability moreso than the difficulty or number of challenges (I'm not a completionist, though I don't mind getting the ones that are not masochistic). I'll give a few examples:

 * N(arbitrary game) = number of full & partial playthroughs ~ number of distinct methods to play + fun repeats + curios.
 * N(Bastion)=1+1+0. Play once through for the story, once again for all the remaining challenges at the same time. Fun, and it never sold itself as a long lasting game.
 * N(Starcraft2 campaign)=1+0+0 Story not strong enough to bear repeating, so will play for all the marbles (achievements) at once. N(Multiplayer)<<100: same map structure, N-variations. Don't care about perfection.
 * N(Civ5)~ 4+2+4. Almost all civs boil down to a single meta-tree that is a function of the chosen victory target (~4). Bonuses due to highly advanced terrain generator (tried to analyse the kind of climate model in the engine). Perlin noise is interesting, but AI is too dumb.
 * N(4x-games) ~ number of factions - tedium of getting into a winning position...(<4 in general, sadly) I love the genre but the historical truth is that all arms races are the same, no matter what kind of explosions they make. There's also an innate problem with 2D, and papers-scissors-rocks red herrings.
 * N(Sandbox)=0. Aimless. It's more interesting to write the sandbox game (N=0.5).
 * N(RPG)=1 + breadth of character-development tree - grind factor. Very large variation, of course.
 So, when you add mode, terrain, and progression variation together, you get:
 *N(AI-War)~ (number of game-changing options) + (number of distinct knowledge unlock paths) + (variation of galactic structure) + (1st order taylor-expansion of their interactions) - (% of game time spent in pause mode). Works out to about 15 or so? Hard to judge the mapping on realistic wormhole connections. One can probably deduce that I've played exactly one choke-point galaxy map (cross) with Fallen Spire and 8 HWs. :P

NB: In that vein, N(Carcassone)=1+0+x, N(SettlersOfCatan)=2+0+x,  where x stands for multiplayer interaction.

Non-redundant randomisation isn't something that blubs generally answer, short of claiming butterfly effect or directly stating multiple ways to play. When randomisation alters your strategic decision (Barbarian invasion sacks half the continent, or a god sends a meteor down and creates an inland sea on Luminith) I agree that this is significant indeed. ;) Vis-a-vis, randomisation of a unit's damage is only significant at scales of Battle for Wesnoth. To their credit, kills by and on barbarians should count towards your final score.


 P.S. drand() and irand(): it's more or less of a private maths thing on complexity of randomisation. I would use integer rand() to choose between one of several decisions, and real/double rand() when I actually have a utility function that takes in multiple factors.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2013, 04:28:47 PM by zharmad »

Offline tigersfan

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #47 on: May 02, 2013, 04:52:20 PM »
The idea behind both the challenges and the editcs is to give you different goals to work towards. In some cases, you might have to focus on making a TON of sunstone/moonstone, because you need to use a lot of god powers, and using those powers requires those resources. But, then in the next game, you might have to focus on getting a lot of trade going between the towns.

I think this is what you are asking about?

Offline PokerChen

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #48 on: May 02, 2013, 05:19:26 PM »
Yes.* :D Effectively, things that result in a significantly-different game. That is what I did not read: the words edicts and challenges didn't strike me as being any different from achievements.

*Some game blurbs interpret the word challenges/edicts/whatever to mean things like "complete in X turns", "do >9000 damage to a unit", or "50% buff to all enemy stats".  So, given a set of challenges, any sub-set that can be practically-completed in a single game (without having the stars align) are arguably the same as one challenge with all the requirements. The minimum number of games to complete this subset is then a realistic estimate of its re-playability value in that department for minimax-ers, rather than the number of starting challenges.
 Hence, if here I discover a strategy to unlock all buildings in one game, I will - gaming efficiency has been maximised. ;) After that I play around with the system and find new ways to win.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2013, 05:29:50 PM by zharmad »

Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #49 on: May 02, 2013, 07:51:17 PM »
When it comes to the challenges, there are 100 in all and many are contradictory.  Also, many of them are such that you have to actually finish a game to do it.  I doubt you could do all 100 of them in fewer than 30 games, and that would be pushing it.  I'm still not really sure yet how to make this more clear to you, but again at the $5 price point we might be past the point where it matters, like you said.  Still... someone like you will be on the fence and this would push them over into our camp if we could nail it, I'm sure. ;)
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Offline Teal_Blue

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #50 on: May 02, 2013, 08:44:12 PM »
Am really, really, really hoping this sells a million! This sounds soooooo cool!  And is so strategic, like AIWar, well... not exactly, but you know... in the same genre! And it is sooooo Arcen, which i am coming to understand as 'different than anything I've ever seen before!'  :) 

Anyway, am really really hoping this one goes viral!!!!   :)

-Teal



Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #51 on: May 02, 2013, 08:45:16 PM »
Thanks!  And us too -- we could use a break from a string of uneven luck lately!
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Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #52 on: May 10, 2013, 12:40:04 PM »
Okay, archiving the old while I make some updates to the OP to reflect the new mechanics and such.

Archived version:

Game Description
How do you balance -- and indeed encourage -- a war between towns without letting either side win?  How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you?  How do you build a thriving landscape of villages against the threat of bandits and mythological powers?  Skyward Collapse places you into the role of The Creator, and frees you to tackle these problems your own way.  Brought to you by the developer of the modern strategy classic AI War: Fleet Command, Arcen's second full strategy title is equally unique (but far easier to learn): a turn-based 4x strategic god-game.

Your task is to build and populate the floating continent of Luminith.  You can create -- but not control -- gods, creatures, and artifacts from both Greek and Norse mythology.  The power you wield with these is immense.  (As one example, Heimdall's horn causes everyone standing outside to drop dead.)  Your task is not undirected, though you have great freedom in how you go about it: Edicts of varying difficulty set extra requirements for your victory, and you can simultaneously pursue Challenges that unlock more buildings and units.  Wielding your powers to their utmost takes skill and planning in how you influence both your mortals and gods.  Your choice to use the most powerful abilities makes your core goals harder, not easier; but with the proper strategy, they can also launch you to new heights of success.

Game Features
* A turn-based strategic god-game where you control neither faction, but instead strive to encourage conflict while maintaining the balance of power.
* Make towns, trade, diplomacy, and war as the boardgame-like floating continent continues to construct itself around you.
* Persuade your minions into doing what you want through incentives as well as controlling what buildings and resources they have access to.
* Choose from among 16 gods, each with unique passive abilities and active powers, to further your goals as each game develops.
* Level up your player profile by completing up to 100 side challenges as you play. Ten related unlockable buildings in all!
* Straightforward controls paired with an intuitive and helpful interface make this an easy title to pick up... but the strategy runs deep.
* 43 Edicts (extra victory requirements) in three difficulty tiers help keep the game fresh every time you play.  There's no one best way to win!
* Co-op multiplayer planned for 1.0 (but not available from the start of beta).
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Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #53 on: May 10, 2013, 12:46:14 PM »
All right, my new version:

Game Description
How do you balance a war between towns without letting either side obliterate the other?  How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you?  How do you build a thriving landscape of villages against the threat of bandits and mythological powers?  Skyward Collapse places you into the role of The Creator, and frees you to tackle these problems your own way.  Brought to you by the developer of the modern strategy classic AI War: Fleet Command, Arcen's second full strategy title is equally unique (but far easier to learn): a turn-based 4x strategic god-game.

Your task is to build and populate the floating continent of Luminith.  You can create -- but not control -- gods, creatures, and artifacts from both Greek and Norse mythology.  The power you wield with these is immense.  (As one example, Heimdall's horn causes everyone standing outside to drop dead.)  Your task is to keep both factions alive until The Master calls you home -- but this is harder than it sounds.  Bandits, along with periodic Woes add to the variety of challenges that you'll face in any given game.  Every game plays out completely differently, and you'll need even the craziest of your powers in order to survive what lies in store for you.

Game Features
* A turn-based strategic god-game where you control neither faction, but instead strive to maintain the balance of power.
* Make towns, trade, diplomacy, and war as the boardgame-like floating continent continues to construct itself around you.
* Persuade your minions into doing what you want through incentives as well as controlling what buildings and resources they have access to.
* 16 gods, each with unique passive abilities and three active powers, help you further your goals as you pass into the Age of Monsters.
* Level up your player profile by winning games. Twelve related unlockable buildings in all!
* Straightforward controls paired with an intuitive and helpful interface make this an easy title to pick up... but the strategy runs deep.
* Multiple difficulty tiers let you play a very relaxed game up to a nail-bitingly difficult one.  There's no one best way to win!
* Co-op multiplayer planned for 1.0 (but not available from the start of beta).
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #54 on: May 21, 2013, 02:36:51 PM »
Archiving the old one again, before more updates:

Game Description
How do you balance a war between towns without letting either side obliterate the other?  How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you?  How do you build a thriving landscape of villages against the threat of bandits and mythological powers?  Skyward Collapse places you into the role of The Creator, and frees you to tackle these problems your own way.  Brought to you by the developer of the modern strategy classic AI War: Fleet Command, Arcen's second full strategy title is equally unique (but far easier to learn): a turn-based 4x strategic god-game.

Your task is to build and populate the floating continent of Luminith.  You can create -- but not control -- gods, creatures, and artifacts from both Greek and Norse mythology.  The power you wield with these is immense.  (As one example, Heimdall's horn causes everyone standing outside to drop dead.)  Your task is to keep both factions alive until The Master calls you home -- but this is harder than it sounds.  Bandits, along with periodic Woes add to the variety of challenges that you'll face in any given game.  Every game plays out completely differently, and you'll need even the craziest of your powers in order to survive what lies in store for you.

Game Features
* A turn-based strategic god-game where you control neither faction, but instead strive to maintain the balance of power.
* Make towns, trade, diplomacy, and war as the boardgame-like floating continent continues to construct itself around you.
* Persuade your minions into doing what you want through incentives as well as controlling what buildings and resources they have access to.
* 16 gods, each with unique passive abilities and three active powers, help you further your goals as you pass into the Age of Monsters.
* Level up your player profile by winning games. Twelve related unlockable buildings in all!
* Straightforward controls paired with an intuitive and helpful interface make this an easy title to pick up... but the strategy runs deep.
* Multiple difficulty tiers let you play a very relaxed game up to a nail-bitingly difficult one.  There's no one best way to win!
* Co-op multiplayer for up to 8 players.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #55 on: May 21, 2013, 02:43:16 PM »
All right, I think this is final:

Game Description
How do you balance -- and indeed encourage -- a war between towns without letting either side obliterate the other?  How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you?  How do you build a landscape of villages when bandits and mythology are conspiring to tear it down?  Skyward Collapse places you into the role of The Creator, and frees you to tackle these problems your own way.  Brought to you by the developer of the modern strategy classic AI War: Fleet Command, Arcen's second full strategy title is equally unique (but far easier to learn): a turn-based 4x strategic god-game.

Your task is to build and populate the floating continent of Luminith.  You create -- but cannot control -- gods, creatures, and artifacts from both Greek and Norse mythology.  The power you wield with these is immense: Heimdall's horn causes everyone outdoors to drop dead, for crying out loud.  Your task is to keep both factions alive and fighting until The Master calls you home -- but this is harder than it sounds.  Bandit Keeps pop up periodically, as do Woes such as floods, serial killers, guild strikes, and vegetarian uprisings.  Every game plays out differently, and you'll need even the craziest of your powers in order to survive what lies in store for you.

Game Features
* A turn-based strategic god-game where you control neither faction, but instead strive to maintain the balance of power.
* Make towns and war as the boardgame-like floating continent continues to construct itself around you.
* Persuade your minions into doing what you want by controlling the circumstances of their (brief) lives.
* 16 gods, each with unique passive abilities and three active powers, help you further your goals as you pass into the Age of Monsters.
* Level up your player profile by winning games. Twelve unlockable buildings in all!
* Straightforward controls paired with an intuitive and helpful interface make this an easy title to pick up... but the strategy runs deep.
* Multiple difficulty levels let you play a very relaxed game up to a nail-bitingly difficult one.  There's no one best way to win!
* Co-op multiplayer for up to 8 players.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline Pepisolo

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #56 on: May 21, 2013, 02:48:11 PM »
Just throwing one quick thought out -- I'm really not sure -- but should it be "How do you balance -- and indeed encourage -- a war between **factions** without letting either side obliterate the other?" Either way, it's no biggie at all.

Offline x4000

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Re: Working on Skyward Collapse marketing copy...
« Reply #57 on: May 21, 2013, 03:02:43 PM »
Yeah, that's a good point.  Will change in the OP.
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