To start off, here are a couple new screenshots!
Here’s a pic of Alyssa’s quarters at the Agency of Peace & Intelligence!
And here’s one of our heroes crossing a bridge! A bridge!
We’re busy working on inserting content into the game at the moment. By our latest estimates, the main game should take between 10-14 hours to complete, plus an additional 3-6 hours for major side-quests. Unlike our previous games, side-quests won’t just be “Go into non-descript small dungeon & fight a few monsters for loot” and in fact, all of the playable characters except Alyssa has a side-quest that’s connected to them. We’re having a lot of fun with these (including some homages to some of our favorite games) and hope you will too.
On the music front, Hyperduck is on a roll and has about 30 songs in finished or almost finished state. In some instances, they’re doing multiple versions of the same song – for example, a faster, more intense remix for an area after it turns hostile. This soundtrack is going to be amazing when it’s done!
We try to make our games so that as long as you take advantage of your characters’ strengths & use strong strategies, you don’t need to do extra grinding to progress. However, we know some people like to grind so they can steamroll the game while others like to know that the option of grinding is there for them in case they get stuck on a particularly hard boss. In order to fit those playstyles as well, we’re thinking that we’re going to add a VR battle option into the game. While in dungeons, you’ll be able to select the VR Battle command from your main menu to enter VR mode where you’ll fight random battles with enemies in that area for XP & credits. And in your base, there will be a special VR battle unit that you can use to fight extra hard bosses – these won’t give XP or money but they will give you special rewards like powerful equipment the first time you beat each one.
Now let’s talk about difficulty.
Difficulty is a tricky thing to get right in RPGs. Make a game too easy & people get bored. Make a game too hard & people get annoyed & may stop playing all together. Unfortunately, it feels like everyone’s opinion on what’s too easy or too hard is different.
In the past, we’ve given our games 4 difficulty options – Easy, Normal, Hard, and Insane – and allow players to adjust their difficulty mid-game. On the plus side, this allows players to tailor the game’s difficulty to their own needs. On the down side, some people feel like they’re not playing the game correctly if they don’t play it on the default difficulty, even if they feel like the default difficulty is too easy or too hard for them.
As far as Cosmic Star Heroine’s difficulty goes, there’s a number of different routes we could take.
1) Multiple difficulties that the player can adjust mid-game like our previous games.
2) One main difficulty, but make sure that enough of the optional content is harder for people who want a challenge.
3) Gameplay modifiers like in Bastion/Transistor. You activate modifiers (like enemies become more dangerous when under 25% Max HP) that make the game harder, while also giving you rewards.
Oh and regardless of what we do, we’ll probably have some sort of New Game+ mode for people who want to replay the game with all their previous stats/abilities/equipment intact.
In other subjects, we know trophies/achievements are serious business for a lot of people. None of our previous games have had a trophy system in them so we’re quite new in this field. What are your trophy do’s and don’ts? What kinds of trophies would you like to see in Cosmic Star Heroine?
Finally, we’re going to be doing a Reddit AMA on Friday, January 30th. We’ll be sure to post a link when it starts.
Thank you everyone for supporting us! Cosmic Star Heroine is going to be great!