Let’s talk about E3 demos today!

Some folks might be scratching their heads since we’re going off rails from the intended blog this week.  It’s okay!  Having me write another Friday blog post gives the team some much needed focus time before E3 starts.

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We began Empyrean with very clear development milestones in mind.  Much of the work over the last few months has gone into laying the foundation for our prototype build.  The prototype acts as a large piece of leverage for the team when negotiating with potential investors and publishers.  It validates the rough core loop of the game and shows that the team has the ability to complete and ship feature milestones.  

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When we discussed what a playable prototype looked like we started with feature focused goals.  We knew that we wanted combat, crafting, and building to exist, as well as lightweight implementations of our campaign director.  After building these features, the team iterated and playtested, finding that the experience wasn’t yet to the polish level we wanted.  Specifically, the experience was too open ended and needed further direction for our prototype players.  So, we revisited our trusty whiteboard and took a queue from the film industry.

We storyboarded out the demo sequence with a focus on player intention:

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While we’re on track to complete a cloud playable prototype at the end of the month, the demo is an evolving beast.  Art and design continue to iterate on the space and we’ve luckily managed to avoid a large amount of  Show Creep,the wasted tech debt/wasted work that is required to meet show demo requirements.  

In next week’s dev blog, we’ll give a recap of how E3 went and have some positive progress to share on the gameplay side of things.  

Have a great E3, all!

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