Hi guys ! Here is another update on our progress in making the Factorio game reality for you. Again huge amount of things has happened since the last post. We are putting our energy into shipping the demo release before X-mas as promised. If necessary we are ready to put in couple of all-nighters as well. At the moment coding sessions lasting till 4 am in the morning are becoming more and more frequent. People sleep, cats scout the dark streets and we are sitting by the computers fixing bugs and tuning the tutorial :)
Slowly we are getting into the phase where we need to focus a lot of our resources on non-programming tasks as well. Things like communication with our freelance partners, processing feedback from early testers and discussing marketing strategies have become part of our daily routine. On the other hand this gives the job an interesting flavor. In our regular programming jobs we were shielded away from all non-programming tasks by dedicated people and now we finally start to appreciate the amount of work they have to deal with.
Recently we have spent quite some time with the web pages as well. The whole thing is running on Heroku and we are slowly discovering the possibilities it gives us. When the demo release is finished it will be downloadable directly from this web page. In order to achieve that we need to setup user authentication system, get our release packages to some file provider (probably Amazon S3) and handle couple of other small things. Later on we plan to have an automatic downloader in the game itself, however that is still sitting there as a ticket in one of our future milestones.
We are always looking for ways to improve game controls and make the interaction for the player as seamless as possible. Now it is quite easy to organise the players inventories using filter slots, crafting is less tedious thanks to automatic interproducts crafting and there is a nice shortcut to view what is going on in machines visible on the screen (like what is in the chest, which items are being processed by furnaces, etc.). We personally feel that every such improvement, even though small in itself, adds to the playing experince.
Hmmm, that would be about it. Oh we have welcomed a new member in our team. He is small, prickly and doesn't say much. You can have a look at his profile in our contacts ;)