I know things have been quiet around here lately. But recently there have been a few discussions about how to move forward with Knights development. So first of all I’d just like to make a list of some of the things that we’ve been discussing:
- There was talk of making a Steam version of Knights. My feeling with Steam is that you really just get one shot at it — at the initial launch, there is a lot of interest, but it dies down a lot afterwards. Therefore, it’s probably best to wait until we have a really polished version of the game (e.g. fix all the outstanding bugs) before contemplating a Steam release.
- There was also talk of porting to tablets (and also Mac) although I think similar comments apply.
- Some people complained that when a knight hits another knight from the side, the second knight is “stunned” (unable to move for a moment) which gives too big of an advantage to the first knight. To try to rectify this I made a mod that removes the stun effect, and put it on the forum. We tried this out a bit last weekend, the conclusion was that it works quite well but probably needs some more tweaking. So that one is “ongoing” 🙂
- One of the biggest problems with the game is that certain quests just get into a “stalemate” situation at times. This can happen with Duel to the Death and sometimes with Destroy Book with Wand. Unfortunately it’s not obvious how to solve this — this is something we’ll have to think about at some point in the future.
- Someone emailed me to complain that the knights just “glide” along smoothly, so they look as though they are floating through the air instead of walking. This is a reasonable point… although speaking personally it doesn’t really bother me that much (I wonder if anyone else is annoyed by this?).
- There are a few minor bugs / improvements we could do, including:
- Sometimes sounds are heard throughout the dungeon, instead of only in one room as they ought to be.
- Sometimes daggers/axes fly right through people without hitting them.
- On Windows 10 on “high DPI displays” the display is upscaled making the text look blurry. (Need to make the app “DPI aware”.)
- The official server should appear as knightsgame.org.uk instead of vps.solarflare.org.uk (just to make it look slightly more official).
- Apparently the “password protected” mode for the server doesn’t work.
- There should be sounds played when someone connects, and perhaps when they type a chat message as well. (Of course there should be an option to disable this if people don’t want it.)
- Skull graphics sometimes point the wrong way (because they don’t rotate correctly).
- The “my sword broke and turned into a dagger” bug.
- The wand of teleport mod needs to be fixed to use the proper Lua “get random square” function. (Also maybe it should be made so that it only teleports one in two, or one in three hits.)
- Tinari also made some suggestions:
- Perhaps poison should kill you slowly over 10 seconds or so instead of instantly. This would give you time to look for a healing potion (or take out another knight before you go!).
- “Permanent magic” options e.g. a game mode where you always have quickness, or are always invisible, etc.
- It was mentioned that players sometimes just turn up to the server, see there are no games at the moment, then go away again (and don’t come back). Perhaps we need to advertise more strongly that there is a weekly game every Saturday and you should turn up to that if you want to play.
- This is one area where Steam and/or tablet support would be useful, because users can easily be given notifications when their friends are playing Knights…
In summary I think the best way to go forward is probably to try to squash some of the minor bugs and add the smaller improvements (like sounds to identify when a knight joins, that sort of thing). These have the advantage of being fairly easy to fix, so it should be possible to make progress without needing to sink loads of time into it.
After that, we can consider some of the more interesting issues, such as game design changes that we may want to make.
As always, feel free to comment on any of this stuff below 🙂
For more information about Knights, please visit http://www.knightsgame.org.uk/.