This week I upgraded the game to Unity 5 so that I could take advantage of their new multiplayer networking stuff. I haven’t started integrating it yet, but I did go through a networking tutorial, and it looks like it’s not going to be too bad.
The second thing I got done is related. The game now supports hotseat multiplayer. It doesn’t allow you to customize your ships yet, but it does allow any number of hotseat players. Additionally I structured it so that you can mix hotseat and networked multiplayer, so you could have two computers connected over a network, each with two or three players apiece. I don’t know if that feature will ever be used, but if you want to do it you should be able to.
I’m thinking the next step is going to be allowing players to customize their ships. I’ve already got the customization window built, I’ll just need to add in some new bits. It needs to limit components based on power availability, and it needs to tally up an estimate of how many points the ship is worth. I expect the point values to be wildly off mark at first, but that should be remedied by some playtesting. I also need to include some soft of lobby where you can set up the game and pick your ships.
I’m also going to have to do some balancing on the different ship hulls. At the moment they all pretty much work the same way. There are some slight maneuverability differences, but not a lot. I’ve got five different factions of ships, different manufacturers basically. I want there to be some good differences between the different groups, so each group has some sort of theme. I’ve got several variables I can change to give the ships a different feel. There’s armor, weight (which affects maneuverability), turn speed, hit points, and weapon slot placement. I figure that I can vary those to give the different groups a different feeling and support different play styles.
Networked multiplayer may be a ways down the road. I want to get started on the story campaign. But I’ll have to see how things progress. I haven’t heard back from the Humble Store yet, so it’s not quite available to the public yet. I’m thinking I may submit it to Desura as well this week. I know that there have been some issues with developers being paid, but it sounds like those are being worked out. Also at this point I’m more concerned with getting the game into as many player’s hands as possible.
Edit: I did a little more looking at Desura, it sounds like they are on their way out. Probably not worth bothering trying to get on there. So I’ll have to find some other places to upload it.