Kalling Kingdom Early Access and Release Date
Kalling Kingdom's completion will take a bit longer, so its full game release date is being moved to August 31st, 2019. If you have been following the latest live development streams on the Elega Corp Twitch channel then you know that the game is nowhere near done. There is a lot of content that still needs to be added, graphics are not completed at all, I wanted to still add original music, and there is still plenty of tweaking and balancing to be done along the way.
That being said, you also know from following the live development streams that there is plenty of progress being made all the time. There is certainly no issue here with the project being dropped, or encountering insurmountable obstacles, or running out of money or time.
The original release date: July 27th 2019, will still be the early access release date. If you would like to buy the game early and participate in providing feedback on the game then the game will still be going live on that date on Itch.io. Details to follow here at ElegaCorp.com and the game's IndieDB page.
The project development kind of barely began during the course production on one of our Pluralsight courses in January of this year but at that time it was mostly just some tinkering around with a couple hundred lines of code. In earnest, the project entered full momentum in April, so in terms of 'Elega time' the game has entered month 4. Of course, all company hours are part-time hours, so maybe it is to be expected that that is not out of the ordinary for a project that is not receiving full time development effort.
Last month, in the blog post here called The Future of Elega Corporation, I discussed this idea that Elega Corp needs to pursue higher quality software by going deeper into the machine and making an effort to more comprehensively understand computer science fundamentals at a practical level. As a part of that effort, I wanted to put together a new 2D game engine, and that is still being planned.
But I am grateful that for this project I made the decision to go with what I was comfortable with during the couple years that I was putting a lot of hours into working on Age of Nomads: the Unity game engine. The reason that the Kalling Kingdom development has gone as well as it has is because I had put in the time investment of more than 200 hours to learn the essentials of working with Unity. Of course, as they have continued to improve the engine it has been impossible for me to keep up!
Building a brand new engine from scratch on this project probably would have resulted in a little bit of a different game. There is something different that happens with the 'feel of development' that one could argue is just as important as the feel of the game from a player perspective. Because every tiny little thing is being done by a brand new effort, additional consideration is given to every tiny thing, both from a project management perspective as well as a creative perspective.
That being said, it is a positive that Kalling Kingdom has been allowed to receive the fluid flexibility that it has during development. For the most part, this is the game that I had originally set out to build from the first draft of the game design document. But not all of it is: there were times when I began experimenting with the gameplay and discovered that some things just did not work the way that I expected them when I was envisioning them in the game design document.
Yet again, it is a major positive movement that I will be embarking on building things from scratch in other future projects, for the most part. Unity can be the right choice for when there are certain challenges on a given project. For right now, Unity seems to make sense from my perspective when any of the following apply: impressive visuals are needed, a certain amount of foundation should be laid upfront for fast experimentation or prototyping, or when scope is super grand or massive to the extent that I need the natural improvements that come over time from an entire team of people working on an engine.
As an indie, I have begun to think about things differently in regard to game engines. If you are completely brand new to game development, then of course it just does not matter what you choose as long as whatever it is can get done what it is you are trying to do AND you are taking real action to make progress. As time goes on, though, the critical lesson kicks in that you have been scoping too large for about... well, your entire life. You need to scope small. No, smaller. No, that is still not small enough.
And for tiny project scopes, an original engine begins to become less of an atrocious idea. It can even make a lot of sense from the standpoint of cutting down on unnecessary fluff or clutter. Anyway, there is much more to say on all this at a later time. In the mean time, there is a video I did on choosing a game engine that is still worth a viewing.
With the announcement regarding the Kalling Kingdom release date out of the way, I need to get back to coding and taking care of business now. I will return soon with more updates on the game, and look forward to having everyone play it!