Oct 232017
 

Hey guys!

Recently, we put up a survey to see what you think about the Vaporum’s difficulty and the game in general. To this day, we’ve received 180 responses which far exceeds what I personally expected! So, what you actually think about Vaporum? Let’s see! πŸ™‚

Which one is your favorite rig?

Rig %
Combat Rig 38%
Thauma Rig 41%
Heavy Rig 21%

As expected, the Heavy Rig trails behind the two evenly matched offensive rigs. Understandably, offense is more fun for most people, but some of you out there on the forums claim the Heavy Rig is by far the best of all three, so I guess we’re fine here. Besides, the more options the better, right?

What difficulty level did you play on the first time?

Difficulty %
Casual 3%
Easy 6%
Normal 58%
Hard 28%
Brutal 5%

In general, you tend to aim for the higher difficulty, despite the game being quite hard even on normal.

Do you find the difficulty level appropriate for its name?

Accurate? %
Yes, it is more or less accurate. 73%
No, it should be easier. 19%
No, it should be harder. 8%

This was our greatest concern prior to release. Will the game be frustratingly hard? Will people drop it after just 30 minutes because they die 10 times in the first level? Turns out, most of you feel the difficulty is okay which gave us a huge relief.

If you found the game too easy or too hard, did you adjust the difficulty level for better experience?

Change? %
The difficulty was okay. 47%
Yes, I changed it. 10%
No, I did not change it. 35%
No, I did not change it and stopped playing. 8%

This is interesting. 35% find the game a little too hard or too easy, but keep playing on the same difficulty level. Perhaps the lower or higher level would be too big a change?

How often did you get into a deadlock situation with little health and no Repair Kits, so you could not continue playing?

Deadlock %
Never 51%
Rarely 23%
Average 14%
Often 8%
All the time! 4%

Due to the harsh design of health management in our game, where when you run out of resources, there are very few ways to regain health, we were getting quite some feedback about you getting stuck out there. We thought this was a major issue, but the survey shows it’s not as big of a deal. Still, we did make some changes in Patch #1 to reduce the likeliness of getting deadlocked.

How much do you like the game (review rating)?

On the scale of 1-10, the average rating you give the game stands at a whopping 8.6, while 31% rate the game at 10/10 and 1% give the game 5/10 (lowest recorded rating).

All this information is very valuable to us. Thank you all who took part in the survey!

Oct 092017
 

Hey guys! We just uploaded a patch, adding some requested game options, slight difficulty balancing, and bugfixing. Enjoy! πŸ™‚

  • Difficulty changes:
    • Final boss health: -15%
    • Acid Roach:
      • Health: -18%
      • Acid pool damage: -16%
    • All roaches can now drop Repair Kits. This was disabled, for some obscure reason. πŸ™‚
    • Decreased the difficulty of some of the hardest encounters in the Haunted (L03) and Librarian (L04) levels.
      • Note: For this to take effect, you have to load an autosave or quicksave in the previous level (so end of L02) and then continue to L03, or to just start a new game.
  • Added new options:
    • Invert mouselook: You can now invert the up-down mouselook.
    • Mouselook sensitivity.
    • Toggle idle camera animation: When you remain still for a while, the camera starts looking around. You can toggle this now.
    • Field of view slider.
    • Phonodiary auto-play: You can toggle whether you want phonodiaries to automatically play or not.
    • Aspect ratio filter added for 21:9 (2.33:1). Set the filter to “All” if you don’t see your resolution listed in the list.
  • Fixed a dead-end in the Office level (thanks TurnSpender!). See this: http://steamcommunity.com/app/629690/discussions/0/1519260397794465258/.
  • Fixed: Hardware cursor flickers while mouselooking.
  • Fixed: Restoring HP and EP is not 100% correct in rare cases.
  • Squashed a few other nasty bugs. (No roaches were harmed! That’s up to you guys!)
Oct 092017
 

Picture showing three existing exo-rigs and one empty slot for the new one!

Hey guys and gals!

We’re thinking of expanding the game’s RPG features by adding a new rig (4th) and a new circuit (10th).

We have some ideas, but because you’ve shown interest and provided us with great feedback on many issues so far, we’d like you to take part in designing these features! We will choose & mix & match the best design(s) and add them to the game in one of the following patches, along with adding the authors’ names to the credits.

The new rig should provide something unique to allow for a new playstyle, something interesting. Re-using some of the mechanics already in the game might work well, but perhaps a new, refreshing mechanic would be more interesting. I’m pretty sure you can come up with crazy & compelling ideas, unlike us for whom it’s hard to think outside the box after 2 years of development. πŸ™‚

The new circuit (skill tree) should add depth and allow the player to improve their build in a unique way. There should be little to no overlapping bonuses with other circuits already in the game. Each circuit has 3 passive skills: one unlocked automatically at rank 3, and then you choose one out of two at rank 5. These can be anything, on-hit effects, triggerable effects, large stat boosters… imagination is the limit!

Also, share this among your friends! You never know who comes up with a genius idea, no matter if they play Vaporum or not! πŸ™‚

Share your ideas here:

Thank you!

Aug 302017
 

Hey guys!

We have great news! Vaporum will be released on September 28th! We are incredibly excited that the game is finally finished and ready for release. These past 2 years of development have been a big challenge for our small team of 4. And now, we just can’t wait for you to get your hands on the game!

The game will come out on the PC Windows platform, in English (both text and voice-overs). We plan to add more languages shortly after. As for other platforms, like Mac, Linux, or consoles, that really depends on how the game does after release and our options.

Share the news and spread the word!

Aug 152017
 

Hey guys!

We are very sorry for not posting for a while about the project, but the amount of focus we put into the game instead of writing about it was time well spent!

The game is done!

You can expect an announcement about the release date in the coming weeks.

These past two years have been a rollercoaster ride for us. We’ve fought on many winning fronts and it looks like the fight is nearly over. There are just a few slain foes who are, here and there, sticking out the fingers from their coffins:

  • Fixing a few remaining bugs.
  • Balancing the game difficulty.
  • General polishing of the game.

These are basically done, but we are still vigilant to possible issues that might come at us from the dark depths of quality assurance.

We are also preparing the PR for the release in cooperation with pros in the field, which is, really, a new experience for us. We want to make sure everyone who might like our game will get to know about it — this is something you can help us with by sharing information about us.

There is a lot of organizational stuff that has still to be taken care of and since there are just 4 of us in the team + some help from external contributors, we ask for your patience. We are aware that we are hugely behind schedule, but we are planning to release the game ASAP, and September looks like a promising estimation.

To sweeten the waiting, we have prepared a couple of wallpapers that you can use to decorate your desktop in the meantime.

1920Γ—1080 (Full HD)
2560Γ—1440 (2k)
3840Γ—2160 (4k)
1920Γ—1080 (Full HD)
2560Γ—1440 (2k)
3840Γ—2160 (4k)
May 162017
 

M

Hey folks!

We have a short article about making sounds for you!

I bet you agree with me that sound is a very important part of any game. When working on a game from scratch, you typically start with white boxes for level geometry, placeholder art for UI, and low-quality sounds (if any) for game features. Just so you have some semblance of what it all will look and sound like when it’s done.

Even though the game mechanics may work flawlessly at that stage, it just lacks soul and atmosphere. After many many months of development, when we finally got to a point where all features were set in stone and we were 100% sure about them, we sent a list of sounds to a professional sound designer. When he sent us back the sound files, and we put them in, the game just came alive all of a sudden. It’s a world of difference! For me, personally, this is one of the most rewarding and fun aspects of game development.

Today, our experienced sound designer, Milan MalΓ­k, shares with us how he went about making sounds and ambience for Vaporum.

Continue reading »

Apr 102017
 

The World

My name is Constantine. I took it upon myself to record the reality and events of this turbulent time, as truthfully as humanly possible.

Our beautiful world consists of vast seas, here and there littered with archipelagos and islands. The largest cluster of islands has approximately 2 million square kilometers of landmass. Other than that, there are a few other smaller archipelagos or isolated islands around the world.

The main cluster is mostly dominated by rocky terrain and mountainous ranges, with limited arable land, but rich deposits of minerals and ores. Because of this set-up, most commerce flows by the sea and air, on the magnificent steamships and airships.

The society, at least the middle to upper classes living on or near Capital Island, the largest piece of land, has been thriving since the invention of the steam engine. Which brought about an industrial revolution, changing the world. In the last few decades, the world has witnessed more technological advancement than ever before in its history.

Coal is the main resource fuelling the industry — power stations, land, sea, and air transportation, manufacture, and the military. But, in the more advanced facilities, special laboratories, and top military installations, first combustion engines omen a new coming age.

Capital Island is experiencing a record growth in commerce, population, and a boom of construction industry. New buildings are popping up every year in an architectural combination of clean ornamental geometry and functional industrial evolution. The culture in these times reflects the technological advancements and admiration for the modern machine.

Progress Above All

Apart from the insignificant isolated island states, every piece of land, everything, and everyone is controlled by one central government body — the Supreme Bureau. The institution governs every inch of people’s lives — from education, production, to consumption of resources — and also directs scientific research and cultural development. Nothing functions without the approval of this bureaucratic apparatus.

“Progress above all!”

Things were not always such. The world used to be divided in many island states and local domains. But the Supreme Bureau, with its ever-present motto and disciplined military might, arose as the dominant force and subdued the world under its watchful eye. Shortly after suppressing the last widespread rebellion against the authoritative regime, top seismologists on Capital Island detected a huge earthquake 450 miles south of the Bureau’s residence, on the high seas of the Meridian Ocean.

The main cluster suffered one of the worst tsunami hits ever recorded. In the aftermath of this nearly cataclysmic event, the military brass of the Bureau thought the rebels were still operational, abusing unknown unconventional weaponry. However, investigation of the epicenter of the quake ruled out rebels’ involvement. It was in one of the most dangerous and unpredictable waters of the whole world — Mare Vaporum. The Sea of Fumes.

Mare Vaporum

No one really knows when or how it was formed. Mare Vaporum got its name from the vast amount of fumes that exudes from the water. The source of this specific behavior was unknown. The sea in these parts is unnaturally gassy and has higher temperature than the surrounding areas. The fumes obstruct navigation and make the water highly corrosive.

Due to low visibility and aggressive corrosion, both steamships and airships have long avoided this part of the world. Notorious sailors’ superstition also played a rather vital role in this, as many ships were lost without a trace in Mare Vaporum before.

Now, the Supreme Bureau decided to delve right into the mystery, sending diver teams equipped with bathyscaphes down there, into the deep. They sent out several teams to explore the underwater area. Some of the bathyscaphes never reached the seabed. Often the crew of these underwater machines had issues with failing machinery or hull-breaching. Some of them delved deeper, but disappeared without a trace, probably simply getting lost due to bad visibility caused by the fumes. No wreckage or debris of the bathyscaphes were found. As if there was something that didn’t want to be found.

But the Bureau did not give up. If natural powers, or whatever it was, were opposing them, it could only mean that something worthy must have been on the seabed of Mare Vaporum. At the end, after several failed attempts, their effort paid off! They found something…

Arx Vaporum

Something they must have found very valuable, as they did not hesitate to sacrifice human lives in retrieving the thing. Soon after, they launched new scientific projects and built research facilities on the nearest hospitable piece of land, the Katkennut Island. Grandiose projects in scale. Some of the experiments carried out didn’t end well. In fact, there are rumors speaking about catastrophic fire on the island. But the specifics were vague, newspapers only mentioning some kind of a natural disaster.

Then, a few years ago, there was another rumor among the intellectual elite of the Isles. The Supreme Bureau was building something big right in the midst of Mare Vaporum. A citadel, maybe a tower, codenamed the Arx Vaporum, dedicated to a specific scientific goal. They started to select people for the project. The selection process was very rigorous, employing elite engineers, scientists, workers, military, and other personnel. It is said they hired not only individuals, but whole families to help them build a new better world.

But what is this Arx Vaporum, and what secrets does it hold? We are not sure about this. What is known, but not generally acknowledged by the Bureau, is that they found something on the seabed that can change our future. The technological marvels of our time are only the beginning. But perhaps, there is something more sinister in all of this.

One can only wonder unless he or she enters the grounds of this mysterious tower…

— Constantine H. Darknoll, Chronicler