Crea - Jasson


I am extremely happy to announce that Crea's latest update, Magnificent Mechanisms, is now officially released. It started out as an innocent update but slowly grew into the beast of an update it is today. So what exactly does this Magnificent Mechanisms bring?

Mechanical Wiring System
Thanks to the Syle Manipulator it is now possible to connect items together and create complex automated systems. When a device sends a signal it has a power level which the receiving item can react to in different ways. It can be as simple as a light changing color based on the power level to as complex as a series of logic gates with conditional logic based on the power level. Automatically open doors, easily move water, and even transfer items in treasure chests. The power is now yours.




Completely redesigned dungeons
The original dungeon concept had some great ideas but ultimately had some fatal flaws. I took dungeons back to the drawing board and now they are better than ever. Every sector you advance through includes multiple threats including monsters, traps and environmental hazards. Progress towards the end and you will now be greeted by a boss and a reward if you claim victory.



Multiplayer Enhancements
With the extended development time I took the opportunity to beef up multiplayer. Bandwidth usage has been reduced by roughly 90% meaning less lag for everyone. The HUD has received a facelift and along with it ally vitals will now be displayed below yours. Target yourself or your ally by the portrait or hovering over your ally character - ally targeting has been fixed!



Full Changelog: https://steamcommunity.com/app/280520/discussions/0/3216031607501136699/

Happy holidays everyone!
Crea - Jasson
It has been a few months of work since my last status update and this one has some amazing news. The upcoming version of Crea, Magnificent Mechanisms, (v1.6) is now in public beta. Much excite!

There are so many amazing changes in Magnificent Mechanisms. It will undoubtedly dazzle new and old players. For now I will withhold divulging details as I want the official launch to be the highlight. At that time I will go over the juicy new features and give an extensive changelog (it is going to be huge).

So far it has been tested by many players for a few months now and is very close to prime time. Now is your chance to get a first look (more like second or third) at this super exclusive (everyone can play) beta. If you do play then please join the discord and let me know how it is going.

You can join by opening up the Crea game properties in Steam, going to the "BETA" tab and then selecting the "beta" branch from the dropdown menu.
Crea - Jasson
Introduction

After Housewarming Update (v1.5) came out last year I decided to turn my attention to the dungeon system. Before taking some time off from development I laid out the dungeon design changes I wanted to make. As usual, I decided on the most ambitious ideas I could imagine which has resulted in the dungeon system being rebuilt from the ground up. In this post I want to share why I think the dungeon system needed to change and what these changes will look like.


Revisiting Dungeons

After turning my attention to dungeons it quickly became obvious that the biggest decision I had to make was if I should attempt to salvage it or completely scrap it. I heavily considered taking the salvaging route but a major factor was that another programmer had implemented it entirely. This meant I had to first learn the existing code before I could make substantial changes. Additionally, dungeons were riddled with both design and mechanical issues that I wanted to overcome.



What are these issues even? Dungeons are currently huge sprawling areas with interweaving hallways and massive rooms. This sounds great but in practice it lead to players running aimlessly hoping to stumble upon the exit. Exploring was uninteresting and monsters could often be entirely ignored - unless the exit objective required you to kill them in which case good luck tracking them all down. Needless to say the progression was empty and culminated into absolutely nothing when the end presented you with no boss or any sort of climax - dungeons fizzled. These are fundamental issues which necessitated fundamental changes. Mechanical issues also plauged dungeons with the most popular being hallways being blocked by rooms preventing progress.



Looking at these issues I worked to shape the dungeon design into something more coherent. First, dungeons should focus on survival and not exploration. The main world is where the exploration should happen. To reinforce this focus on survival it made sense to narrow exploration into something much more linear. Additionally, it is crucial that dungeons build to a climax to make completing dungeons feel both challenging and satisfying. So how does this all translate into a new system?

Dungeon Redesign

Dungeons will continue to be broken up into multiple floors (realms/maps). Each floor is segmented into a "sector" which will have its own objective. Progression through sectors will be linear and completing the sector objective is necessary in order to advance to the next sector. Difficulty will ramp up slowly as you progress through sectors and floors. Upon reaching the last sector of the entire dungeon you will encounter a worthy boss. Upon victory you will be rewarded with a juicy treasure chest.



Sectors have become the pivotal component in dungeons and they are receiving much attention. Sector objectives will range from "kill all monsters" to "flipping a switch in a room guarded by monsters to power a treasure chest in another room that has the sector key in it". Objectives will have lots of variety and there can be a supporting objective to add even more. You will never know what to expect in the next sector.

Focusing on survival, there are many threats within dungeons the player will face. Hazards such as lava pools, poisonous plants and spikes will be despersed throughout. Players will encounter many traps as well such as flamethrowers, dart shooters, bomb launchers and monster alerts. Even monsters are going to prove more challenging as they will patrol their area and will link with other monsters if you're not careful. Don't be a Leeroy Jenkins and rush into rooms!



Conclusion

Now that you know more about the changes to dungeons I hope you're as excited as I am about them. Dungeons wont be the only changes coming to the v1.6 update. You can look forward to new items, bug fixes and even a "secret" new feature. Unfortunately major changes like these take time and I still have much to do. I have made great progress on dungeons and hope to have an early beta version released in the next few weeks. If you would like to follow development more closely then you are more than welcomed to follow the Siege Games Twitch channel with the schedule below. I have also been attempting to revive the Crea Discord Server and you should join! Thank you again for everyone's continued support.

Stream Schedule
Weekdays: 7AM to 2PM Pacific Time
Weekends: 12PM to 4PM Pacific Time
May 10, 2018
Crea - Jasson
Wow! It is already May! I hope everyone is having a good year so far! Apologies for having such a long period between announcements. I have intended to post something for over two months but am only now managing to force myself to do so. In this post I want to give an update on Crea and as well as details on why this current Crea update is still in development.

Crea Development
Just to get it out there: yes, the Crea 1.6 update is still being worked on. I am still figuring out exactly what it will have and when it will be released. I will tease that a big new feature has been completed for it which will delight those who like to build. There are many other things I would love to do in 1.6 so I ask for your patience for a bit longer. It is also worth noting that I am once again the sole developer on Crea. The artist, Jonatan, did great work for Crea but after wetting his appetite for indie gamedev he wanted to work on his own projects for awhile. I hope to work with him again in the future!

Development Delays
So why is this update taking so long? Well, to be honest, it is because I have hardly worked on it. I started last year working as hard as I could go and kept at it for a solid 7 months working incredibly hard. Kelley (former Crea artist and wife) and I decided to travel to Stockholm for 6 weeks (August-September) with our daughter. Here is a picture of us taking a day trip to Skansen, an open-air museum.



Afterwards we decided to move back to California and once there I found myself in a not so great place. In the past I have kept up the facade that everything is great even when they're not. I decided to stop that and instead share the struggles in hopes that it may help others and maybe in the future it will help me too.

After the 5+ years of working on Crea I was extremely burned out. I had suffered from minor burnout during development but nothing close to this. My desire to do any game development entirely dissipated. With my productivity gone I felt aimless and empty which resulted in me becoming depressed. Occasionally, I would struggle in an attempt to be productive but my motivation was at an all time low and my attempts where fruitless. I retreated into an old MMO with my brothers which lasted until the end of February when my brothers' grew bored of the game. At that point I was forced out of my routine and fortunately I discovered my motivation was renewed and productivity slowly returned. This is certainly not the best way to handle this situation but I think talking about it is a good step in the right direction.

Since the end of February I have been very busy with Crea and several side projects. For awhile I was juggling them and then I decided to finish these side projects first. That way they can be completed finally and I would be able to focus 100% on Crea once more. Another week or two and I should be back on Crea fulltime.

Hexachain
One of these projects is Hexachain, a mobile zen puzzle game about connecting hexes together and then destroying the hex chain. I started this project a few years ago with a friend and we have really wanted to finish it. It is now in beta testing and if you are interested you can sign up with the link associated to your device OS:

Android: https://rink.hockeyapp.net/recruit/33fdb08c98aa47188f4adf20d1117f31
iOS: https://rink.hockeyapp.net/recruit/609d47a79dec40b7b0f66759c071fd9a



House
Another project I have been working on for awhile now is becoming a homeowner. We decided to buy a new construction home which we have been working on getting since coming back from Sweden. It is finally nearing completion and we should be moved in by the end of May. Here is a sneak peak at the future home of Siege Games!



Loves
Thank you everyone for your amazing support and patience. The last half year has been tough for me but things are looking up and I'm exited for the second half of this year!
Dec 21, 2017
Crea - Jasson
Hello, I hope everyone is doing well! I wanted to give everyone an update on the progress for the next big update (1.6). While it is developing nicely; it still needs awhile longer in the oven to fully bake. So what is planned for the 1.6 update?

Currently in beta, I am bringing much better unicode support to Crea and making it vastly easier to translate with the Localizer tool. This will hopefully lead to more languages added to Crea soon!

The main course for the update is enhanced dungeons. "Lackluster" and "anticlimactic" would be good words to describe the current dungeon system.
The dungeon modifiers and objectives will be balanced and expanded upon. Other aspects such as treasure will be rebalanced and most importantly bosses will be added to the end of dungeons.

Thank you for your continued support! Happy holidays!
Crea - Jasson
Hello everyone! I just wanted to give a quick update on a few things.

1.5.5 Patch
I just released a small patch that fixes a few issues around using mods.

  • Resolved issue with activating a mod for an existing world without first selecting it which resulted in putting the world content information into a bad state that causes it to crash on load
  • Fixed issue with some mods using old craft categories
  • Attempt to resolve Xbox One controllers misbehaving

Pricing Availability
Several countries had their pricing updated by Steam and this caused Crea to become unavailable int hose countries. I have submitted new prices and am awaiting Steam's approval. I unfortunately do not know when this will happen but keep checking back. Steam updated the pricing!

Update Progress
The next update is in progress and while I'll hold off on exact details I will tease that friend's of the dungeoneer will be pleased! I am hoping to get this update out before Christmas.
Nov 1, 2017
Crea - Jasson
From the very beginning I planned for Crea to support multiple languages. My hopes were that the community would help localize Crea and I have not been let down. There are numerous attempts to translate it including Russian, French, Japanese and Chinese to name a few. However, as Crea continued to grow these existing localizations struggled to keep up as it is extremely difficult to know what text had been added, removed, or changed. This is finally changing!

Localization Tool
I have been working on better localization support since the last update and am ready to share what I've come up with. I have created a tool inside Crea called "Localizer" which allows you to filter, edit and preview localization entries. It will also version your entry and let you know when it is outdated making it easy to keep your localization up to date.



While editing there is a live preview which reflects what it will look like in-game including the styling and line length.



Localizing Crea
My hope is to bring official localizations to Crea with the community's help. If you would like to help contribute then you should reply to this forum post letting everyone know so that we can work together. I am considering putting together an official github repository of the localizations for everyone to view and make push requests to (submissions).

I have released an update to the beta branch which has the Localizer. I have not done much testing on the game outside of the Localizer. I have also updated the creating localizations documentation so be sure to check that out on getting started.
Crea - Jasson


Greetings adventurers! It has been awhile since we spoke last and I'm excited to bring good news - Housewarming (v1.5) is now available!

In Housewarming the focus has been on improving building and adding an incentive to construct a base. You will also find many new home items and several new monsters to fend off.

NPC Housing
After learning how resourceful adventurers are the NPCs immediately started making requests. Now they want their own room and will even request items to furnish it. Upon completing these requests they will give you various bonuses through their services such as a discount. Get to building!

Building Upgrades
With the focus on building this update I wanted to make the experience easier and more enjoyable. A placement grid has been added so you can easily see how things line up while building. Speaking of lining things up, item placement will now snap to the grid (this can be turned off in the settings). Grass is also automatically replaced when attempting to build on it.

More Item and Monsters
Tons of new building related items have been added such as fences, scaffolding and stone furniture. Build away but be wary for there are new creatures lurking about. Most of these will be familiar as they are variations of existing monsters but be careful for their attacks do vary. Oh and be watchful for monsters sense have been heightened and will gravitate towards players now.

More!
Several other changes and bug fixes have been made as well. You can view the 1.5 changelog here.

Moving Forward
To squelch any concerns, I will be continuing Crea development for the forseeable furture. I will be attempting to balance working on Crea as well as this new secret project I started with Jonatan. During this time updates will be a little slower than before but please still look forward to them. Thank you for your continued support!
Aug 8, 2017
Crea - Jasson
Greetings Adventurers! Time has flown by since the last announcement and I wanted to update everyone on what is going on.

First off, the NPC update has sadly been delayed due to real life taking over. Unfortunately it is going to be another two months before I will be able to release it. Sorry! I will try to get a smaller patch out in the meantime to fix any major issues. Apologies for not being around for the few weeks to reply. I'm going to try to be better at balancing that.

Over the last few weeks I have been busy selling many of my possessions, packing up my apartment, and moving everything into storage 600 miles south of Portland in Northern California. This is all with Kelley's help and baby Kaelie... not so much help. Since arriving in California we've been visiting family and friends this last week and now we are off on a big adventure - to Sweden!

For those keen readers you may remember that the talented Crea artist, Jonatan, is in Sweden. I am going to visit him and we will be starting a new project! That's right, after five and a half years working on Crea I am finally going to be working on something else. We are going to be working on a prototype at first and go from there. My plan is to focus on this new project while in Sweden and once I get back to the States in 6 weeks get back to working on Crea part time. We are excited to be starting something new and I believe that once I return to Crea it will be with a restored vigor.

Again, sorry for the tease on announcing the next update and then delaying it for so long. I hope everyone is still looking forward to it when it does finally land.

Thank you everyone for your continued support!
Jul 12, 2017
Crea - Jasson
Hello everyone! First off I want to say thank you for everyone's support the last few weeks. Many people stopped by my livestream to tell me how much they have been enjoying Crea and lots of great reviews. It really means a lot to us!

I wanted to give everyone a quick update on the NPC housing and the next update for Crea. Good progress has been made on the housing with full room detection including which items are in the room. The big remaining task is getting the NPC to get the various bonuses from the items they request.



Originally I was wanting to get this update out last week but that did not happen for various reasons. One of those reasons being that I unfortunately have to move by the end of the month. Towards the end of the month and after I'm going to be quite busy. The plan is to release the 1.5 update a little before that happens which is not far off. Because of this the NPC update will just be rolled into the 1.5 update.

Along with the 1.5 update I'm going to do my best to address the reported issues. Thank you everyone for your patience and support!
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