Blog - Page 10

The game is Greenlit! My thoughts on the process

I'm pleased to announce that after 66 days on steam, Escape From BioStation was successfully greenlit.

It was an interesting process, which began with an inauspicious spurt of "yes" votes, followed by a very pronounced flatline after a week. This was probably my fault as the page was sorely lacking having only a few images and not even a video. This was a huge blunder. After around a couple of weeks Escape From BioStation had received around 300 yes votes. The amount of unique visitors to the Steam page was at best one a day. I estimated that getting into the hallowed top 100 would require 1000 - 1500 yes votes at least. The game was clearly in "Greelight Limbo".

This was my understanding of the process, so whilst disappointed I was not necessarily concerned. However I did get a feeling that I would need to draft a press release along the lines of "1 year in Greenlight - my tale of woe".

So during this time development on Escape From Biostation continued steadily, and I did everything to ensure that the game was able to receive any positive interest it might get (short of paying for advertising). This involved responding to comments on the greenlight page, posting new videos / screenshots of game footage as soon as there was something to show off; and adding announcements to let visitors know the game was still being worked on. This had some success, in that I could see that the percent of people voting yes was going up (having started at a lowly 20%), but the all important unique visitors was still a pathetic trickle.

After around 50 days a friend of mine suggested approaching some external groups and sites to increase exposure - which I thought would be a good idea. So they went off and got on with this for me - allowing me to focus on devving. Their work did yield some interest. The largest amount of interest came when a demo of Escape from BioStation was included in a greenlight bundle on Groupees, which ran for a few days. Soon after that it was also mentioned on the who's gaming now website. Following this there started to be a marked increase in new visitors. The percentage of these visitors voting yes increased too - being more like 75%. As a result of this the game's progress towards the top 100 games went from about 25% to 80% over the course of about a week and a half - so very suddenly the exciting prospect of getting to the top 100 seemed a reality.

At 66 days I got a very unexpected email letting me know that the game had been Greenlit! I think at that point the game was about 85% of the way to the top 100, so this came as a bit of a pleasant shock. My understanding was that the powers that be in the Valve camp would only scour the top 100 to decide on what games they would include. My friend suggested that the reason for this might be that it was the sudden surge of interest that they liked. Perhaps this is true, I'll never find out. What I secretly hope is that someone at Valve heard about the game and loved it so much that they were following it's progress with keen interest so that they could give it the greenlight as soon as the possibly could.

In any case I am delighted to announce that Escape from BioStation will indeed be coming to steam in 2016. For any that might be in "Greenlight Limbo" reading this then I hope that some of my experiences might offer some tips.

Bosses, Kickstarter and Groupees

Good day to you space station fans!

So it's been a while since the last update but that does not mean that nothing has been going on... far from it! Here is a rundown:

Kickstarter

The kickstarter campaign was successfully funded! It did end up being a bit of a photo finish but it was a big relief to have made it. This funding will be start going towards a few things so looking forward to sending updates about that to all of the backers.

Development

The first of three boss levels has been completed. This guy is called the hammer titan, and is a bit on the big side.

As well as that one big update was that the unity engine had a major version update to 5, so naturally that took a huge amount of time to get up to date. There has also been a new UI added with health and a score for "nuts and bolts" which will be cool because you'll be able to spend them on upgrades. Also have been improving all of the existing levels and started on level 5!

Groupees & Demo

We have a demo of the game now - which is basically level 3. This has been included in a groupees bundle, here: https://groupees.com/bagb28

It's a snip at four bucks so get involved! This is helping a lot towards steam greenlight as more people are finding out about the game. The demo will of course be going up here as well, although ahead of that there will be some work to make it as cool as possible :)

Well that's it for now, but there will be more updates soon!

The BioStation Drone

Collectables!

Aloha!

Well its been a productive couple of weeks, so I thought it was high time I let you all know how we've been getting on.

Greenlight: The game is 15% of the way to the top 100. That might not sound like much it's only been a few weeks so am very happy for the hundreds of yes votes it's got so far. If you haven't yet (and are able to) then please show your support over at  http://steamcommunity.com//sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=429764005

The game itself is making steady progress. The largest improvement is a system of collectable goodies!

These collectables will do a couple of things. First and foremost they will give you points! Everyone loves points, right? With them you'll be able to buy upgrades like:
  •  Better ammo
  • Tougher skin
  • Speed upgrades
  • Increased rate of fire
Work on the ammo types is already complete with normal, electric, and fire ammo flavours that all deal different damages.

The other thing that some collectables will do is show you data logs from the missing crew, and they will sometimes give you clues on what to do in a particular area.

Something that will start being built very soon is a "hub" level. This will allow you to go in to any level you like from one point. The hub will also have a shop where you can spend your hard earned points on upgrades!

Development of the new AI is going slowly as it is quite an in depth system. It'll be worth it in the end to ensure that the combat is as engaging as possible.
We are now at the propotype stage for level 5, so following this we'll know exactly all of the elements that will be needed. these can then be created and put together. That should be complete in a couple of weeks.

If you have already backed on kickstarter then once again THANK YOU (sorry for sounding like a broken record!) There is some way to go to our goal. There is still over a week to go, so we'll be on the campaign wagon to make sure we get there :)