TL;DR – We’re still hard at work on Grid Masters! Working on native launchers, more character prototyping and tweaks, and Momocon prep.
It’s been a couple of weeks since our last update. Late February/early March seems to be the time for everything to happen in everyone’s lives. But while the team here hasn’t had as much time to work on development, we’ve still been able to get a few things done.
First on the list is the launcher. A couple of months ago we decided to make native launchers for each platform. This allows us to create a better experience and use better tools that will allow for faster development. For Windows, we’re using WPF for the user interface. With it we can easily create and apply styles and even edit the look and feel of the launcher while it’s running. The new launcher will not include any installer code like our old launcher did. It will see some new features as well. The main page will display a changelog panel and a news feed. You will also be able to give feedback or contact us from within the launcher.
Next, is the new installer. We will be starting fresh on a separate installer using the WiX toolkit. The install process will look pretty similar, but maintaining the launcher and installer will be much easier on our end of things. Since we are now using a toolkit instead of writing our own custom code, we can do a lot more with the installer. It will have more options like adding a start menu folder, desktop icon, and possibly even a service to notify you when game updates are available.
We’ve made some progress on characters as well. We still plan to release with six playable characters. For those who were able to play the Sydney prototype at SIEGEcon, her character design is getting a few tweaks. We really like the boomerang mechanic of her base attack and ultimate, but we aren’t really happy with her two other abilities. From the play testing we’ve done, they don’t seem to add anything worthwhile to her kit, so we’re going back to the drawing board to find abilities that will complement the boomerang mechanic making her even more fun to play. With the last of the initial six characters, we have a design that we plan to start prototyping in the next couple of weeks. Once we are a comfortable with the core concept and have the character’s lore finalized, we will announce the character here in a blog post.
Momocon is slowly approaching, being only a little over 2 months away. We’re already getting our gear prepped for the awesome 4-day event. This year we plan to host a tournament every day with prizes for the top three placers to be announced. We learned a lot from having a table last year and hope that this year’s booth will be even better. We also plan to have more buttons of our characters (including the new additions) this year, with some extra for Malaya since she seems to be a crowd favorite. And if all goes well on our end, attendees may even get a chance to play Grid Masters on a custom arcade cabinet too.
Unfortunately at this point, we do not yet have an estimate for when the next game update will come out, but we will let you know as soon as we do!