Sunday, 2 November 2014

6x Mass Production Alpha 2 released!

Hi everyone!

I'm proud to announce that after 6 weeks of work I am releasing the second alpha of 6x Mass Production to the wider world... slowly. I say slowly because I've been crunching on it in my spare time so much that I've literally put life things aside and I need to catch up on those (lest I fall into a bad work habits again)

But I'll cut to the chase, here is the game, play it!

Web build - Requires Unity Plugin (7 MB) (ignore the beta warning, can't seem get rid of it. Also don't go fullscreen! Not implemented that yet :p)
Windows build (15MB)
MacOS build (16 MB)
Ubuntu Linux build (17 MB)
Feedback I'm looking for is:

  1. Tutorials! Did anything confuse you or did you get stuck anywhere?
  2. UI! Are there UI elements that are unclear or confusing at first? Did you mistake one thing for another or misinterpret anything?
  3. If you have other comments or suggestions I'm always keen to hear :)
I've posted a similar post on the Make Games South Africa forums, if you have any feedback, feel free to post there, or post a comment here, or email me at 

So I've already gotten a TON of great feedback from many wonderful people. I want to release it to more forums, more people, more exposure. I am going to implement the latest round of feedback first and then go into another round of seeking feedback with a wider audience. Like I said, I don't want to burn myself out and I'm not relying on this game for income, so I'm going to get to it when once I've recovered a little.

I really wanted to make a special gif for this post thanking those who have already given me such valuable feedback, but I'm not going to beat around the bush, I needed a break and spent all day playing Don Bradman's Cricket 2014 while watching the Starcraft 2 WCS finals Ro16 replays (cricket and Starcraft 2 are the only sports I watch profesional games of, both have such interesting meta-game to me). So here's this one I made for MGSA instead :p

Once I get more shapes on the board I'm definitely making a Zergling level

As a side note this is a completely new version, nearly none of the code from the old version was used. I incorporated (most of) the feedback I got from way back in March when I first demoed it and the improvements really shine through. That said I still have a long way to go.

That's it! Below is a list of changes, putting there if you are interested. Otherwise thanks for reading!



List of planned changes/considerations for the next version (just so it's on record), there are tons more written down as notes when I did live testing but I'll compile those later:
  • General Design:
    • Playing with the idea of starting the player off in a "test" level that is hard but not impossible. There will be (some) mechanism that'll ask the player if they want to go to the tutorial levels. This is to see if they play or panic. People who are comfortable to test out the level and try and fail will probably figure out the general idea of the game and can jump straight to the creative solution vibe. Other people might want a gentler introduction and are given that option to do very hand holding style tutorials.
    • I have a huge list of level design ideas for specific levels. Too many to list here (also HyuN is playing INnoVation in WCS so I'll write it out later :p)
    • Complete the tutorial levels! Right now it just kinda ends (because I ran out of time when designing it)
    • Thinking of adding UI hints inbetween levels that show some of the more intricate UI hotkeys and tweaks
  • Aesthetic:
    • Make the yellow lights more orange
    • Generally get an artist to let loose on this whole thing :p
    • Make parts fade in when being generated (or have some effect or transistion). Considering having it come in from off the board but this might be too busy
    • Get the transition screen to line up properly (actually just need to get that screen redone completely)
  • Finish Area:
    • Make the finish area look *completely different* and have it open up to accept a correct construction instead of it mysteriously disappearing
    • Alternatively there might be an 'output node' (like the input node) that the construction just needs to touch in order for it to be checked (I'm leaning towards this one tbh)
  • Instruction 'belt'
    • The instruction belt will run left to right rather than up/down
    • Will only have one belt open on the board at a time (might make it such that you can open more than one by pressing ctrl) since having many open causes a huge clutter.
    • The open space on the left will be used to store 'reference belts, they will be lined up with the grabbers but off the board so that they are not in the way all the time. They will also be editable but will be lined up so that multiple grabbers can be viewed 'side by side'
    • This is tentative but these reference belts on the left will probably be hideable
  • UI:
    • Might have a slider instead of 4 buttons with different speeds
    • Might make a preview shadow or ghost of where the grabbers will go once run (like 25% transparent arrows that appear when hovering)
    • Alternatively, since the arrows might be noisy, might add black dots that appearon hover to the left and right of the grabber head to show where it would end up if rotates one left or one right
    • Change the green "level complete button" to no green... was very confusing
    • Copy paste functionality for instructions (somehow :p)
    • Hotkeys for starting, pausing, and stopping
    • Allow hotkeys to trigger insert when hovered over the insert arrow
    • When dragging instructions, upon dropping them they need to tween to their position, not clear where they end up.
  • Technical/Bugfixes
    • Make webplayer go fullscreen properly