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Author Topic: Greenlit! And what is "1.0"?  (Read 1082 times)


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Greenlit! And what is "1.0"?
« on: March 02, 2017, 02:59:33 AM »

Cogmind was Greenlit on February 28th, the same day of its first update since putting it up for voting two weeks before (possibly somewhat related :D). A big thanks to everyone who voted, helping Cogmind take the first big step towards introduction to a wider audience!

So of course the next big question is when will Cogmind actually come to Steam?

Well, Alpha 14 just went out, and following that we still have one more major release to do, the final content update that will add in the last map we need to be considered "story complete" (a map which only a small handful of people are even aware is a place...). My thoughts in recent months have generally assumed I'd call that the great 1.0 milestone, launching on Steam as a "full game"... and then just keep on working from there. While Cogmind has been fun and polished for a long while now, there are certainly more optional maps I'd like to add, as well as plenty of other mechanics and more add-on content/features. But when I first went to write this announcement about Greenlight, the additional realities and implications of a full launch suddenly hit me, and the alternative I'd never really taken seriously started to seem like a good idea in some respects: Steam EA.

So I took a little while to think on it, and believe it's best to not immediately declare 1.0 at that milestone, but rather put Cogmind in Early Access and gradually work towards it, in the process adding some of these "post-1.0" ideas I've been wanting to get to.

Keep in mind that this decision has no negative impact on long-term development. My planned feature list is unchanged (heck I've no doubt it'll keep growing), it is essentially a change in name only, one that seems more in line with signaling that "there's even more to come!" In the short term, the good news for everyone here would be that this means Cogmind will come to Steam sooner :).

I'll admit that from a business angle this is possibly a poorer route when compared to a concerted push for 1.0, but it's actually better for development, and I've always been about doing whatever's best for the game and its players. I'll be able to continue working on updates while gradually tending to the other aspects involved with an eventual full Steam launch, rather than having to pause progress for a while in order to sort all that out at once before 1.0.

TL;DR: Let's not call the huge milestone "1.0," but instead do Steam EA and just keep running with more features, which we were going to do anyway. Might as well clearly signal that there's lots more to come by calling it Early Access, even if by pretty much anyone's standards Cogmind long ago ceased to be an "alpha" or "EA" game.

On the subject of versions, although I've been using the Alpha designation for public releases, Cogmind technically has pure version numbers, every single one starting with 0.10 (plus the date of the release), essentially meaning "Numbers? Bah! This is just the foundation on which all future releases are built--1.0 is a myth." Roguelikes especially are known to have plenty of room to evolve new features like that :D. Would the EA versions maybe be called something else to differentiate them from what came before? Maybe switch from, say, Alpha 16 to "Release 17," picking up wherever we leave off?

Anyway, what exactly does "come to Steam sooner" mean? Some time in Q2 seems reasonable. I still have to work on setting up the necessary business arrangements (ugh), and that involves factors I'm quite unfamiliar with, making it hard to be specific. Development-wise, any time after Alpha 15 is fair game, so it'll mostly be a case of seeing how the non-game situation develops.

And the full release after that? Whenever it seems convenient, really. I'll want to wait until the right launch window, which could play a significant role, but none of that has any bearing on what's most important: more features and polish :)

For the interested, here are Cogmind's lifetime Greenlight stats:

A good number of followers to start with :D

And here you can see how most of the traffic arrived in the first couple days, much more quickly than... everything else :P (The only advertising I did was on the first day, telling people in the usual places that Cogmind was on Greenlight--no press)

(The little uptick at the end is existing players who hadn't heard already learning about it via the Alpha 14 update.)
« Last Edit: March 02, 2017, 03:06:39 AM by Kyzrati »
Josh Ge, Developer - Dev Blog | @GridSageGames