This week in Space Food Truck: Alex is hooking up some truly fantastic sound design from the amazing Mike Reagan and co., while stuffing as many gameplay improvements as he can fit into our Early Access release next month (you can sign up for an email reminder right here). Hoping to have a trailer ready for you guys in the next week or so, showing off a lot of the improvements we’ve made since Kickstarter.
On my side of things (the art side), I’m still revisiting all the stuff I left “good enough” and generally tidying up. I’m tweaking card artwork, adding goofy things for the character speech bubbles, creating more planet descriptions (we’re up to 139), and adding new customer reviews for the Game Over screen. When you finish a round, you get something like a Yelp review based on how many recipes you completed, and they have been exceedingly fun to write.
I’ll leave you with another bit of updated artwork for an event card called “Eureka!” It’s one of my favorites. You don’t want to be anywhere near the Scientist when he has an idea.
Sound effects from our partners in crime, Mike Reagan and co. (Outwitters, Gauntlet’s Revenge) are trickling in to Space Food Truck, and they sound every bit as amazing as we’ve come to expect. We’ve also added a new error system to the game, which we hope will be even more useful for our alpha players than the existing help menu. Now when you break a rule, the game will go ahead and tell you what’s wrong without you needing to look it up.
And naturally at this stage of development, polish items from the “would be nice” list are slowly finding their way in. Here’s some arrival card artwork that I’d been wanting to take another pass on. It desperately needed more aliens.
Space Food Truck is to Steam’s Early Access next month, so be sure to sign up for an email reminder on release day.
Space Food Truck has presented an interesting challenge for us. It’s a game with tons of sound needs and the potential to do all sorts of cool stuff, but virtually no budget to make any of that happen. So we’ve set aside music and a list of priority sound effects for the professionals to take care of, and the rest is up to us. For the past week or so we’ve been rolling up our sleeves, cracking open our thesauruses for keyword alternatives, and digging through massive databases of sound effects to try and cobble together something awesome. The results have been better than expected.
One piece of advice for any other developers tackling their own sound design: definitely capture a massive video of the game in action. Take it into the video editing software of your choice, and drop sound effects on top of your silent movie. It’s much easier that way to try a bunch of different stuff and do creative mashups of different effects, without having to build and rebuild and test and retest in-game.
We finished an awesome Early Access trailer this week, but we can’t release it until we figure out the ending. “Coming to Steam Early Access (blank)”. Early November feels right, but we’re not committed yet. You can always sign up for an email reminder on release day right here.
My focus has been 100% on the Space Food Truck trailer for the past few days, which feels a little more important for a PC game than it did for mobile. I don’t know if that’s actually the case, but this trailer is definitely getting more love than I’m usually willing to invest.
I spent more than a whole work day just trying to get this one shot set up and animated in Unity. I think I’ve decided that all of our non-gameplay footage is going to be done in-engine, so I can take advantage of stuff like the planet generation system and our particle system to class things up. Here’s how it turned out:
There’s an odd time near the end of production for any game we work on. Most of the artwork is finished, and just as my desk is starting to clear, Alex’s gets buried. He’s digging his way through a mountain of production needs and wants at the moment, squashing bugs and feverishly implementing all the stuff we’ve been talking about adding.
When Alex reaches this last stretch I become playtester in chief, putting all the new additions through their paces. There’s still some artwork and writing for me to pick at, but I have to admit that, on occasion, I’ve engaged in brief flings with certain prototypes.
Hopefully we can still get Early Access out by the end of the month as planned, but it’s looking like we might spill over a little into November. As our alpha players can attest, the builds keep getting better and better. You can sign up for a reminder when Space Food Truck is released right here.
So Alex beat Space Food Truck for the first time ever this week… without me. I’m not sore about it or anything. But I am a little.
Playing start to finish is a very good sign for our upcoming Early Access release! We’re aiming to have the game in shape by the end of October. For anyone unfamiliar with Steam’s Early Access, it basically lets you buy and play the game before it’s technically “done done”, so you guys can give us feedback while we continue working on it. It’s a real, release copy of the game you’re buying, you just get it early. Sign up for an email reminder when Space Food Truck hits Early Access right here.
I’m almost through my list of card animations, which will give me some room to tackle my “Would be Nice” list of things I hoped I had time for. Here’s a mockup for one of the engineer’s cards, “Exterminator”, which removes a pest from your card collection (that solar crab isn’t a pest, he’s just my unfortunate placeholder).
All this weekend, the Tilty-Tilt Boom Boom Bundle is on sale on the App Store for just $2.99 (slashed down from $5.99)! Included, you’ll find three classic iOS arcade games: Tilt to Live, Tilt to Live 2: Redonkulous, and Tilt to Live: Gauntlet’s Revenge. Three great games for just three bucks! It’s a perfect opportunity to complete your collection, or to experience the destructive power of the accelerometer for the very first time.
Tilt to Live is the arcade game that started it all! Using precise, customizable tilt controls you’ll shock, shred, and nuke your way through hordes of relentless red dots using an arsenal of satisfying weapons, including cluster missiles, ice blasts, vortexes and more.
Tilt to Live 2: Redonkulous turned that formula up to 11, adding even crazier weapons like the laser mace and the “perforator”. Also a first for the series were new “weapon tricks” to multiply your points, challenging boss fights for those who lived to find them, and bonus rounds to push your highscore over the top.
Last but not least, Tilt to Live: Gauntlet’s Revenge is an uber-challenging spinoff, a Tilt to Live like no other. See how long you can survive without your precious weapons to help you. If you have what it takes to unlock the final gauntlet, you’ll go head-to-head with the Dot King himself.
All of these for just three bucks! But you’ll have to act fast, because this special sale ends Monday evening. You might also consider signing up for a reminder email for our upcoming cooperative board game, Space Food Truck. It’s coming to Steam later this year, with a tablet release planned shortly thereafter.
Last night was an exciting first: four unique players all connected online in a round of Space Food Truck. It’s still very rough around the edges, but the session didn’t end with a crash! Someone’s laptop battery ran out… but that was totally not our game’s fault, which is a nice change of pace. While we polish our way toward an Early Access release in a month or so, we’ll leave you with a look at our shiny new damage effects. If you haven’t already, you can always sign up for a reminder when the game launches.
— One Man Left Studios (@OneManLeft) September 12, 2015
As we bring in more alpha testers, Space Food Truck‘s online experience is slowly stabilizing. We’re also starting to work in slick effects for things like ship damage, thanks in part to a cool new particle tool we’re experimenting with. While Alex hunts and squashes show-stopping bugs for our impending Early Access release, I’ve been mocking up some animations to make things shinier. Here’s a look at cooking an ingredient (which is still missing the splash).
Had a very productive meeting yesterday about what Space Food Truck will sound like (decided not to go with the authentic “empty vacuum of space” route, regardless of how much money that would save), and Alex has even started distributing some buggy and broken alpha versions of the game to a few brave souls for first impressions.
The galaxy is feeling really cool in this latest build. We’ve finally filled in enough planets, color schemes, and descriptions to make it fun to explore, and I’d love to add even more if there’s time. That’s thanks to a really cool system Alex put together to quickly generate new planets. It starts with a single illustration, then mixes things up with different color schemes, rings, and moons. Here’s a few of the ways you might see our “ContinentalA” type planet in-game.
As always, you can sign up for a reminder the day Space Food Truck’s Early Access is launched on Steam.