A long journey.

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A long journey.

Postby Aetherblade » Sun Dec 17, 2017 2:43 pm

It’s been nearly a decade. We have been through a lot together on our journey towards our end-goal, Novus. Novus represented an idea that we hoped to give to you all, however, the reality is that, despite our best efforts, Novus as we envisioned it was not to be.

This is not the end. We are not ready to give up on our dream of an MMO strategy game. A lot of progress has been made and our core strengths improved. To this end we will share the reality we are bringing. There is only so much we can bring to a single update, we ask for your patience over the next few weeks as we share and discuss with you this new direction.

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The memories are burned into me. A mothballed battleship. My last command. The wrecker’s yard. The screams. No one was ready. Nothing prepared us. My homeworld died that day. We fled. Through systems ruled by the dead and hostile space. I have done everything I could to keep my people alive. I am their last and only hope for survival. I will do whatever it takes.

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In the beginning, it was enough to survive, to count every new day as a success. That all changed when we stumbled upon one of the old Titan Stations. What is a dystopian slum and harbor for the forgotten is now the last home and hope for humanity.

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Every day, I wake up knowing I will face new trials and be tested to my limits, but I am ready. I am an Admiral in charge of one of the most powerful fleets this galaxy will ever see. I have seen the planets of Rigel burn, I have ordered my commanders to their deaths and spent countless lives to give humanity one more day.Hell is real and I count it as safe harbor.

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Hell is real and I count it as safe harbor.


Game Summary

At the beginning of the game you, the player, are a lowly captain in command of an old ship orbiting your homeworld.

And then your world ends, but it does not die alone. Humanity’s worlds are destroyed in a single blow that leaves only the scattered remains of vessels in space.

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A moment of silence as the surprise turns to panic. Hails come in. Industrial freighters, passenger cruise ships, a rich man’s pleasure yacht. Where is home? Are we at war? What do we do?

Amidst all the panic is the realisation that lives are now on the clock. Everything from fuel to each man’s breath is now a finite commodity.

Some turn to you, trusting in the Navy and all that it used to represent. Some flee, seeking hope in a cruel cosmos. You are now in charge of all that remains of your homeworld, for all you know, all that remains of mankind.

Watch on youtube.com


It’s not enough to pass the days on survival rations and quotes. For mankind to survive a haven must be found and you are entrusted with the authority to lead them.

You will guide your survivors through hostile space, past lifeless worlds. You will do whatever it takes. With no central government, some will turn to piracy. Can you trust another armed flotilla? To protect yourself, you arm civilian ships, convert passenger liners, whatever it takes. You said it then, you’ll say it again. Whatever it takes.

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Can you trust their captains? You will entrust loyal captains to command your new fleet. You will survive. You aren’t a Captain anymore, Admiral.

In time, you will come across an ancient station. You have heard of them before. They are few, vast and alien. This one is a haven for mankind, but not for humanity. The station is a land of hope lost, home to slavers, friend to pirates and in bed with corporations with little sense of ethics. Your people will not be safe here. And you are not alone. You are not the only Admiral to find this bastion of mankind.

You know this must be your new home. There are factories. There are salvage yards and shipyards. You know that if you do not maintain what you have built, you will have it taken from you. Hell is real and you count it as safe harbor.

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Dev plan

Our development will be divided up into 3 main sections before launch: Mechanics, Open world, Environmental Depth.

1. Mechanics: due for completion May 2018

In this first stage we are working on developing and polishing the core mechanics and creating content creation tools. Our objective by the end of this stage is to have a majority of the games features functional and polished, but no open world yet. When the player leaves the home station they go directly into MP RTS style 1v1 3v3 5v5 etc battles. The point here is really to polish combat and preparation to a really beautiful and fun experience. As you can see from the videos we are already well on our way into this stage, however there is still a lot to do before it is really fun and balanced.

Although the servers are ready for open world as its the same server architecture as we used on Novus Aeterno, we decided to split up development into these 3 stages and get each stage really polished and entertaining before moving onto the next one. This was a mistake we made with Novus, that we don’t want to make again. We had everything 60% done and we had players interacting with an environment where everything was there but it was broken or underdeveloped. This meant it just wasn’t really fun or playable, and we didn't really get useful feedback because it wasn’t easy to tell whether something was nonfunctional, non-finished or just not fun.

Watch on youtube.com


2. Open World:

This is where the game starts to really look and play like we envision it and full world persistency will be in place. The universe will be a sort of spiderweb with the Hub station in the center. The further out you go in any direction the harder it will be to survive. You will encounter everything from Hostile NPC fleets to estranged neutral fleets which you can assist and rescue or kill and loot. This will also be when the economy of the game will start to come together, as the persistency comes online the natural values of materials, veteran crew, rare components, and even mass produced escort ships will come to light on the hub stations player run market. Finally at this stage we will be adding in our Buff/Debuff system which will allow us to do a lot more fun things with ship components, unique escorts, unit veterancy and fleet abilities.

3. Environmental Depth:

This is when we will be adding quests & anomalous gateways (i.e. RPG style dungeon door that leads to other cool maps to play through Co-Op PvE environments.) this is when we will be adding a lot of the depth to the game both in storyline and late game environments, for people to explore far away from the central hub station (if they can make it there alive!)

Watch on youtube.com


4. Launch:

Once all of the above stages have been completed and polished to our liking, the game will be at 1.0 and will launch.

5. Post Launch - Empire Building:

Post launch we will be working on adding in more late game content, such as a player built space stations, a political system for alliances to vy for power, and control over the main Hub-station, so they can try to instill their own rules of law over the remainder of humanity.

All of these development plans outside of ‘Stage 1’ are still very much on the drawing board and we will be looking for extensive input from the community on them.

The issues we ran into with Novus

The full story of everything that has happened can be read here:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1M5hSnEWBwbsIcTSeVs7m25QjDb0AGI-YvK85YevdnSM/edit?usp=sharing

It is a long story which I recommend you read however the TL:DR is:

  • In 2014 Havok discontinued support for the Havok Vision engine. This meant that the core issues we had with the engine would not be fixed, and the game would not work.

    At this point we didn’t know what to do, we looked into workarounds, we looked into porting the client to another engine - but nothing worked. We were far too integrated into the Vision client, even our movement code used its math libraries. It had taken us five years to build our game around the Havok Vision engine, but with no other options, we had to try to redevelop the game on Unity, which sapped the remaining budget and our own personal investments. We were not willing to give up on our promise to you, and we put in many times the money raised on Kickstarter from our own pocket. This was as much our dream as yours. When this ran out, we were forced to seek a Publisher, which led to its own problems.
  • Without a large marketing budget for a very powerful on-launch marketing campaign, the game would fail. This was not immediately apparent, but was something that we began to notice with the Infiltrator Backers and boiled down to a geographical isolation. We would have 200+ people log in over a 5 hour period in an evening, but almost no one interacted with anyone else. This was because each of the players logging in found themselves in a sea of offline empires that effectively served to ensure each player was alone. When those players logged off, and another group logged in, the same process would be repeated. We would see Infiltrator Backers log in ask “anyone around” then log out at the exact moment his neighbor logged in and asked the same question.

    This core issue made it very hard to get the ball rolling. This would not have been as much of an issue had we been able to continue with our publisher, who would have been able to provide the marketing required for a high-population launch of a completed, high polished product. The servers would be PACKED, giving everyone a positive first impression of the game which would continue to ensure each player was not isolated.

    This problem was a major element behind our publisher backing out.

When we were independent again, we knew there was no way we could ever succeed with Novus Aeterno without a top tier publisher which we no longer had, though we fought to secure another. There was also one other, equally serious issue, which is that we still had a long way till Novus Aeterno would be finished and no budget to finish it.

We were not ready to give up on this dream of a MMO strategy game. We have the server architecture, which passed all reviews by the Publishers with flying colors. We have a dedicated and experienced team.

Watch on youtube.com


Kickstarter rewards and refunds

Over the next few months we will be working with you guys on transferring your rewards to this new game where applicable, and in the cases where things do not transfer over 1 to 1, for example the planet terraforming tokens - together, we will come up with some replacement options which you guys can vote on. As an example, one backer proposed the planet terraforming tokens be made into alliance space station skins so your alliance space station would look like a Ringworld instead of a normal station.

We would ask that if there is something that you do not like about this new direction feel free to discuss it with us, we are very open to viewpoints and would really value the feedback.

At the end of the day this is still an amazing community that we want to involve heavily in the development. It’s very possible that with your feedback and continued support this game will grow into something you will love the way we do. If that is not what happens then we are so grateful for your backing of Novus Aeterno that we will personally refund your kickstarter backing out of the profit the team gets from launch of this game.

Your decisions about refunds will not need to be made until we get closer to launch. So I ask you to be patient and open minded in the meantime to see what we are doing. No Matter what your final decision will be,

Thank you for your support.
-Nick, Matt, Dan, Luuk.

Watch on youtube.com


From here on out

There is a lot to do as we move forward and we would be really appreciative of any help from the community. Anyone who is willing to volunteer some time to help in any way, shape or form, we’d love to hear from you - drop us a PM if you think there’s something you can help with!

Starting in January we will begin regular dev blogs, and possible twitch live dev streaming if that is something you guys would like - let us know!

We have not decided yet whether we will take this game to a publisher or go for it independently, and this is a subject we would like your involvement and feedback on over the upcoming weeks as it is a decision that does affect all of us.

Watch on youtube.com



Thank you


It has been a very long road full of ups and downs and honestly there is no way for me to fully show my gratitude to this community. However, I will be doing my best. Expect to see many upcoming additional rewards and gifts for kickstarter backers, even ones added post launch just as added gifts of gratitude for the ongoing support. Nothing can really, truly represent how incredibly grateful we all are for your contributions and energy, hopefully over time we can show you!

P.S.
1. The name of this new game is not 100% set yet. Over the next week or so we will be sharing it with you looking for feedback.

2. We are also forming a new studio as Taitale often was confused as a misspelling of Telltale Games. The new studio will be Legion Tech. We’ve come a long way and there have been many changes in who we are and we feel Legion Tech represents us better.

3. There is a notable lack of nitty gritty detail in this update about how the exact core features of this new project will work. We will be going into more detail in upcoming updates. This update was already around 15 pages including the history of Taitale so we felt best to cut it here. However as always we are happy to go answering questions in between updates.

Once again, thank you for your support.
-Nick, Matt, Dan, Luuk.

----------
You can follow us at:
Website: http://hades9.com/ (under construction!)
FB: https://www.facebook.com/Hades9Game/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Hades9Game
Twitch: https://www.twitch.tv/hades9game
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCj6w86 ... r3H3M55wBA?
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Akumaka » Sun Dec 17, 2017 3:45 pm

To be perfectly frank, I'm quite disappointed.

However, I understand the circumstances and other events which were beyond your control. I wish you luck with this new game and hope that one day you'll get to see your vision of Novus AEterno come to life.
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Re: A long journey.

Postby NameAceSNIPER » Sun Dec 17, 2017 3:48 pm

Although the game has transitioned far from where it began, I have to say I'm very excited for this new direction. Even from these in game images you can see the attention to detail and awesome environments you guys are creating. I look forward to seeing your future updates.

You guys are awesome, and have done so much to work towards accomplishing your goals. Farther then many people choose to go.

I'll look forward to your future updates and the game that unfolds before us.
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Aetherblade » Sun Dec 17, 2017 4:03 pm

Thanks for the kind words NameAceSNIPER. It has been a hard journey but it's going to turn out great, there is no doubt in my mind!

And @Akumaka, I do hope to see you ingame when we release this game to you. It may not be what we originally set out to create, but I hope it still tickles that space MMO RTS / management game you were probably looking for!
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Akumaka » Sun Dec 17, 2017 4:06 pm

You'll see me ingame, of course. I'm always up for trying a new RTS. The disappointment was never directed at you gentlemen, I know it was not your fault, just in general over the announcement.

Not many Developers have ever tried to make a proper MMORTS. (You know they call MOBAs MMORTS games? Ugh...) Even fewer have actually made it to release. The ones that have, most are closed, others are heavily instanced so that it doesn't even feel like an MMO. I was just really hoping for Novus AEterno in the format that you guys had envisioned.

The new game does sound interesting and fun, though, so I'll be sticking around for that!
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Re: A long journey.

Postby RedLinkWill » Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:47 am

It seems like a plan is being well thought out, so that is a good sign. I hope to see more when it becomes available to play.

I personally prefer something like "Player Legion" instead of "Legion Tech." I don't dislike the title in any way, but when I hear 'tech,' I usually think of something more than just video games, if that is making any sense. That is just my opinion though, I don't mean it as an insult or anything.

I would also like to hear a re-introduction of the team, considering how long it has been. Something as simple as a head count is good enough unless you really do mean Nick, Matt, Dan, and Luuk mentioned under the post are the only ones besides Denny(one of the guys/the only person making the soundtrack). I think it can help give the community a more specific perspective on development.
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Re: A long journey.

Postby ante185 » Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:52 am

will infiltrator privileges be, what's the word? applicable?
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Aetherblade » Mon Dec 18, 2017 8:04 am

ante185 wrote:will infiltrator privileges be, what's the word? applicable?


Yes, players with infiltrator access will have access to the alpha when we go live.

Where Kickstarter rewards are less clear cut we will be working with the community to work out the best way to transfer it to what we are working with now.
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Aetherblade » Mon Dec 18, 2017 8:07 am

RedLinkWill wrote:It seems like a plan is being well thought out, so that is a good sign. I hope to see more when it becomes available to play.

I personally prefer something like "Player Legion" instead of "Legion Tech." I don't dislike the title in any way, but when I hear 'tech,' I usually think of something more than just video games, if that is making any sense. That is just my opinion though, I don't mean it as an insult or anything.

I would also like to hear a re-introduction of the team, considering how long it has been. Something as simple as a head count is good enough unless you really do mean Nick, Matt, Dan, and Luuk mentioned under the post are the only ones besides Denny(one of the guys/the only person making the soundtrack). I think it can help give the community a more specific perspective on development.


We liked Legion Tech a lot ourselves, we thought it sounded pretty bad ass :).

I'll bring up the reintroduction stuff for the next update, sounds like a good idea to me. We are currently just working with the 4 of us for the most part, but there are some others that are helping out with developing that are worth introducing as well. I don't know when or how we will do this, we may just want to keep the next 1 or 2 updates to detailing the plans we have for the new game, since these tend to get fairly lengthy. Good idea though.
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Re: A long journey.

Postby Sypheria » Mon Dec 18, 2017 8:13 am

Our server architectures is called the Legion Engine since it supports more units in play than any other mmo system.

Technically, we do more than just video games. Legion Tech, creators of the Legion Engine is pretty solid imo.
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