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Pollution, Artists and GDC - Oh my!

What a crazy week this has been! It feels like I haven't actually gotten all that much done 'on the game', but there's so much more to building an actual game product than just writing the code. So this week I've: Found an amazing artist who's agreed to work with me building far better art assets than I ever could. Had meetings with a marketing guru (He'd probably hate being described that way) and a programmer from another game dev company that showed me some excellent things I can do in Unity to make Before work much better under the hood. Implemented a lot of those Unity suggestions. Discovered that the Mysterious Benefactor decided to add a bit onto my funding so that I can go to GDC i

A dirty robot ship

Today is brought to you by the feeling when you played far too much of a new game in the weekend and now you're all fuzzy brain on Monday. In unrelated news, I know it's been out for ages but Subnautica is amazing and you should play it. I've got two aims for this week, which may be reaching a bit, but lets see. First, the new feature I promised on Friday is Pollution, and second is automatic shipping. My plan for Before is for it to have little violence or competition, but games still thrive on conflict of some kind. One source of that 'conflict' will be around Pollution. Your people are trying to survive in a land damaged by the disaster that destroyed civilisation and sent them into t

Welcome to Friday #2

Oh my, what a week it's been in camp Balancing Monkey! Most of the week has been spent fixing a metric boatload of bugs and working on the user interface - making things much easier and more enjoyable to interact with, and lots clearer as to what's going on. If you look back at last Friday you can see what the state of things was then, but now it looks like this: So we've got buildable tiles being displayed, and a new much clearer UI for constructing buildings and showing what those buildings are doing. I don't mind if you look at that and go "he's kidding right - that's as opaque as a brick wall" - the fine layout and art that make these things really sing is very much MIA. I know it's

Looking for artists!

Hi again! It's time for me to start the process of looking for artists to collaborate on Before with me. I need a 2D artist and a 3D artist, although I'm happy if they are both the same person. If you are a Concept, 2D or 3D artist (or know someone who is) and Before looks interesting to you, please drop me a portfolio at sam@balancingmonkeygames.com. To be clear - this is a paid contract job, done remotely. There will be something like 2-3 months work, spread in chunks between early-mid next year. Before is a low-violence city building strategy game set after civilisation has been destroyed by a weird apocalypse. You are helping people rebuild after they emerge from the shelters they'

Happy Monday!

Well, looks like you can't get rid of me that easily. Here I am for week #2, full of thoughts and energy for another week. I got so many things done last week that I'd been wanting to do for ages, so that felt pretty amazing! The main focuses for this week are finishing off the 'you can build here' effect and working on the UI. But given how my plans for last week went, I'm as curious as you to see what I actually end up doing! The effect itself is good enough for now, but it actually required a significant change to how I'm rendering things under the hood, which has naturally caused the game to run a bit slower, so I want to sort that out, basically. It's also stuffed up a few things, l

First Friday!

Hello again and welcome to my first Friday as a full time game developer! Well, what a week this has been! The short version is that I added the 'end screen' (it took about 5 minutes!) and changed the planet generation to use regular hexagons rather than 5, 6 and 7 sided tiles, and then still had 3 days up my sleeve! So I've also gone through and added a whole bunch of usability and graphical features that have been sorely missing. For example: - Buildings now face the road they're next to, and the road extends 'under' the building, which does wonders for tying the village together into a cohesive whole. The citizens also enter and exit the buildings by the door now :) You can also see

Happy Monday!

Well, this is it! The first day of full time development on Before. I'm so excited to see what this is going to be like! Earlier this year I ran my first half-marathon. One of the most important lessons is that when you start it's really important that you run way slower than you think you should. Your full of energy and adrenaline and everything in you just wants to sprint, but if you do you'll run out of energy really quickly and be lucky to even finish the race at all. Whereas if you start out slow, your body has a chance to settle into the race, and you can keep up your pace for much longer. So that's what I'm doing this week - starting out slow. I do have some ideas of what I want

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