about 2 months ago
– Sat, Jul 31, 2021 at 07:04:35 PM
This is going to be a shorter update as we hope August sees a large batch of news. We are moving forward slowly with rulebook look. We are moving forward on a partnership potential, but we have had 1 public and 4 private questions asking for that game play summary so we thought it would be great to go over again here in July during a slower month!
We thank you all for your patience, let that be a refresher going into next month. And knowing these changes, look back at the previous few updates for context. And enjoy a few previews to full art super cards!
See you next month!
3 months ago
– Wed, Jun 30, 2021 at 01:16:41 PM
Let's start with, we will be sharing one of the next scenarios we had finished next month I hope, but it has been slow going making sure everything fits on the uniform size. So, let's jump past that (We hope your June was a great month!), to seeing some of the core villains! We got a few people asking about the villains powers vs the heroes last month when we shared our Phalanx heroes. Rest assured, the villains NOT in the scenarios are meant and balanced to be plugged into any skirmish scenario!
Arc comes in as a bit of a hybrid of damage and support. Her basic ability STEALS energy from her opponents, making Arc one of the best energy generators in the game (add in her bas reroll ability and get outta here!). This is good, because at the bottom of her Card, Living battery allows her to add dice to allied figures in her space or near her space. With the ability to swap places or stun, Arc is a powerhouse with a good deal of control! Her major weakness is those physical powerhouses that get in and hit hard!
While Faultline is a bigger size (see the 3 in the upper right hand corner), What can we say about the Faultline himself!? 9 frickin health? MASSIVE physical defense? Immune to being pushed and pulled? Gains energy when he would be? Oh yeah, and he can gain 2x Blocks when rolling with Toughness!
Okay okay, but he also can push with his basic punch (that rolls 3?!), as well as pull and cripple foes? Faultline is all business on the field and given how long he STAYS on the field, many clamored to add him to their team.
The daughter to one of the greatest super villains, Iconic's Technomancy and Powersuit make her fairly infamous as well! Her suit lets her change her size, gain flight, as well defend better. Her hand blaster powers up her suit from range, but if you examine Thruster Punch, Iconic is not remotely afraid to get in close and mix it up! Centuri Beam is a very powerful attack though and can level a team that clusters so watch out!
What other villains are in the 1st Volume?
Leader of the Fire Street Gang, Blackbird! While he may seem unassuming, he is an enhanced being, beyond peak human physical power, and.... he has a unique glider to get about the city with!
His Crossbow Bolts generate more impactful critical hits, making his basic attack one with a very high ceiling of damage. His Jolt Staff Flurry is unique, in that it is one of the only abilities that can be activated 2 times without a 2nd action/activation!
His Execution can sustain him a little, is expensive, but often can put down many villains immediately. All the while, he can escape with Glider Boost!, while generating Energy!
The last of the villain previews is Mirage, the Mercenary Assassin! She works with Villains, but has worked with heroes in the past. She has an innate resistance to attacks from Characters like Prestige, as her mental resistance is higher, but how does her low Health and other defenses leave her? Well, she comes with 3 duplicate models that are clear green.
Manifest Illusions is how she places them, placing up to 2 of 3 each turn. This makes Triple Strike unique in that it COULD be made 2 times if you have duplicates on the field that can legally attack. Psy Step is a unique movement based attack that allow you to throw opponents for a loop, swapping places, then, during resolution, interrupt special actions others may have while defending. Psy Blade makes up for her fragility by being POSSIBLY, the strongest attack in the game. Rolling possibly 7 dice (as a Mental Attack), then giving her some escape.
Then Shatter Illusions allows her to "break" a Mirage to add to her rolls. Given the changes Ben and Chris went over with targeting, you can see how she would "hide" within these illusions spaces and protect herself!.
We hope that Starting in July our Graphic Designer will have time after the Holiday (July 4th Weekend) to buckle down on some of the rulebook additions. As we finish those, we will be previewing them as well!
Currently, our possible partner is looking over the funds they have after registering and looking to register for conventions this year, and what opportunities this game may have with an announcement and those events. We hope to have more on that as they finish up their plans through November!
4 months ago
– Mon, May 31, 2021 at 09:49:06 PM
May has been a heck of a month. We apologize for the late hour, but it being a holiday weekend and tomorrow being June 1st, we wanted to drop this late tonight instead of June 1st.
I want to start by saying we will be previewing a few final characters, but no more scenario layouts this month. The answer why is simple. Even if they are balanced, our graphic designer was down for the count with the 2nd covid shot for about 12 days, trying to work and manage a really negative reaction to her last shot was not something she could add too. But, let's dive in!
Polaress is now balanced and ready to be the quintessential Battlefield Leader. In Battle, her first 2 abilities deal Energy Damage and debuff opponents. Her basic attack cripples (reducing movement value) and her 2nd attack not only creates an ice slide for her and allies to shift, but deals damage and reduces her targets energy (limiting their next activation options). While her attacks deal energy damage, she can pay to change Ice Blast to Physical as well.
In the current battle system, ! rolled add both more dice and count as a success. Should she trigger her alpha ability on Ice Blast she Cancels the ! effects her opponent has and rolls 9also preventing them from critically defending).
Her defenses and health are average or better, which is good because for her to be a truly effective battle leader for The Phalanx, she needs to be within 1 space. When she is, her Ice Control lowers dice rolled (both attacking and defending).
Hotspot, her brother, adds speed and pizza to the team. While he has one of the lowest health values in the game, you can see he moves fast/far, and ignores figures, engagement and objects when moving. He also throws free punches here and there! While Hotspot cannot deal damage as reliable as some, the volume in which he is attacking itself can overwhelm the opposing teams!
Prestige is also in a great place! While vulnerable to physical attacks (if you can get to her and stay close to her), she is amazing at fending off mental powers, as her magical prowess gives her the ability to ward off such things. Above all things, Prestige's powers make her one of the best supporting allies in the game, rerolling dice, moving allies, moving enemies and stealing energy for allies that need more to pull off their powerful moves!
Tidal is the tank of all tanks for The Phalanx! Big Swell lets him reposition, while Master of the Deep creates a current towards him that pulls foes in. Tidal also has better health and defense than most of the titular characters! One thing players have loved from Tidal that wasn't as expected is the variety in move type. He has melee, line and ranged attacks.
We will be back to talking checklists and scenarios in June, as well as pouring out whatever partnership information we can as it comes in. We hope you all had a great memorial day weekend (if you celebrate such things) and we hope to talk again soon!
5 months ago
– Fri, Apr 30, 2021 at 01:30:32 PM
We spent March discussing some of the more pointed questions asked by those of you in the comment sections, but also, recognizing, they were things we needed to post (and had failed to do so yet). So we will spend some of this update doing that, but then discussing a few more exciting things, as accountability is key and important, but we have other things to share.
Sometimes we give overly optimistic timeline. As Leon has pointed out multiple times, we have been wrapping up the rules for some time. We actually thought this was a great time to be able to discuss "why". With the rising costs of manufacturing, shipping and us having to pay taxes on most of our projects, they are all loss leaders. Without being able to afford more losses, as they would be personal costs at that point (of which none of us could afford to do), our graphic designer is volunteering her time. After 2020 and her budget, we work around her schedule. So when we have edits and layouts that need doing, those require time to edit. That is what causes a majority of delay back and forth.
We had our agreement with our manufacturer so that the current deposits cover what was needed and will remain so. We have a personal relationship with the person who heads their sales and worked out a great contract with them. On top of that, part of the agreement includes future Alphas printings/expansions, which is something we are working out with our possible partner, as they have a printer of their own they prefer, but our capital and rates are contingent on this agreement.
When we began exploring this second partnership, it was beneficial for both sides. We had a property needing better marketing, better publisher, but a very intriguing style and look. For us to fulfill it, most of our shipping costs were covered, based on the estimated weight, but our partner would end up covering about 14% additional shipping. Without going further, there are reasons that they would be willing to do this now, and we think when we wrap it up it will be apparent why.
To cover this also, because I know this is an anxiety for most. Our possible partner has channels in the EU and now the UK separately. They have successfully just fulfilled a game to both regions using these channels and it was very successful.
Now the question has been "when". Right now we are thinking all of this could be wrapped up about mid summer with some exciting announcements.
We have officially wrapped on our multiple passes both editing and balancing characters. We are so happy with the new layout and ruleset. We believe that these characters feel so unique now, so special. We also have found that any team can really have a shot come Team vs Team time! We are so excited we thought we would share some finals of characters we don't talk about as much. Usually we highlight the core characters.
Black Mamba begins the game on her Energy Track above where most Heroes and Villains start. But as someone without Super Strength, she must rely on spending it at the right time, and using her Basic Attack smart. She is also one of the only characters who can interact with devices (plot and physical) possibly for free when entering their space.
Captain Liberty is the ULTMATE team leader. Nothing in his kit stands out like our core characters outside of the supporting implications of his powerset. While nothing he does jumps off the page as "WOW!!!" in terms of damage or effect, just like the homage we made him as, he can do this all day. ;) One crux for him though is that he begins the game with 0 Energy, so you really need him to aggressively engage to function at his highest levels.
Kid Tiger deserves his own introduction as well!
Extremely susceptible to Energy Blasts, he remains one of the best at harassing opposing teams and cleaning up multiple single targets.
Enough of that though. This is a preview of the very first Scenario we have balanced, written and ready to go. We use this scenario to teach the game as it has no over the top functions :D
In this Scenario, the City is under a coordinated assault by the Fire Street Gang. This is the first instance the new Phalanx Five gets together. The Fire Street crew will be fielding Thugs repeatedly. You can see on the left hand side that the Gang has 8 energy split amongst all of their members, whereas the Heroes have their own individually. Next to that is the Upgrades Thugs may gain when a Hero Spends their Power Point on their Super powerful Alpha Card. Those one time effects save you now, but the Thugs will ramp up their agenda as you use them.
The Thugs can win if they loot both Vaults OR if the Alert reaches 0 and the TCPD is forced to retreat.
This scenario is challenging and fun but a great introduction to Alphas Scenarios!
Thanks for tuning in this month Alphas and we look forward to engaging again in May!
6 months ago
– Tue, Mar 30, 2021 at 11:11:50 AM
Thank you all so much, this is going to be a text heavy update because rather than prepping things to show you, we took to heart something a backer, Royce Porter commented. For this update, we want to just talk and give details. if you pay attention to the comment section, Royce had some pointed questions, and he was 100% right in his assessment. So, while we did the normal things, we thought we would use his comment as an outline to answer things he outlined, as directly as possible. On top of that, backer Leon has been holding us accountable, and we think some of that needs highlighting too.
We have provided a development list, and from that, we every month have kept you up to date on what's left to be done/what we worked on last month. Things have been removed from that list over the course of 2020 because we finished it.
During the campaign, we offered 2 Add-Ons.
MDF Terrain. These have been done and housed at our houses for some time now. Once we had them made by our friend who cuts said things, we closed off any further orders of them beyond our stock.
3D Terrain. We have, during the last year, shown, a physical Proof of all of these as well.
Now, as you know, we spent a good deal of time changing the systems to the game, making sure they are fun, interesting, able to find a balance. After we did that, we had to come back around to the Buildings and Terrain. Currently the system accommodates both in as interesting a way as we wanted and believe possible. Buildings change the verticality of the battlefields and scenarios, while the 3D Terrain provides minor actions players can take to interact with them, or combat actions (throwing cars for instance). All the while, all of them can effect our new grid system and allow for more heroic storytelling, like filling a space with a car, Legend and a Bystander.
I am nearly 100% sure, in the past year, we have shown every, if not nearly every model, physically proofed by the manufacturer and us.
For the rulebook, we have all of the wording done, checked multiple times and right now we are waiting on the final layout. All of the artwork for it is done, the graphic design for the background, titles etc has finished. Right now there are a few examples that need to be done (specifically related to the environmental terrain and objects) and the tutorial pages.
Most of these are completed. We have shown examples of all of these in the previous updates over the last year. The thing we haven't finished all of layout wise and asset wise is the Scenario Boards for the Scenarios specifically. We have explained why (we wait for them to be balanced and finalized before doing so), and as we move through one, we work to finish it. But the finished cards and tokens have all been shown and previewed. Even in changing the system, most tokens could not change, in fact, it was a limitation in redesigning the system as we worked to stay as close to our original quotes allotted.
All of our deposits were paid in 2018, then the differences in 2019, to secure those agreements. We had been informed in 2020 that with the rising costs to all products, those agreements needed to be changed. So yes, all of our money from this campaign has been paid to or allocated to those companies before mid 2020 had even arrived.
A long while ago, we had been approached by a company that wanted to partner and free us up to design and develop games. That company though was the same, if not smaller than us, and now no longer exists due to the financial implications of 2020 on them. Late in 2019 though, we were approached by a few who were affected by 2020 and COVID 19, in that they had capital from sales, but had previously been forced to lay off developers or were unable to test internal designs, and therefore were looking to acquire properties that they could put under their banner and fill holes in their catalogue.
To talk for a second about the impact of losing a lead designer, it wasn't as simple as, he left, now let's do this. it was that he had to leave as we realized the functions of the game were broken as promised. now we know the attitude of "Well just release something", but from our perspective, costs rise in manufacturing every year, so delaying the first time already cost us. And releasing a busted game would have hurt us just as much as a delay. that is why we made the choice we made. We know that might not be popular, but that's the choice we made and why.
As for how covid-19 continues to affect us, we don't use TTS. At all. Neither does any of our remote teams. So the stay at home order did delay some of our work here in MN, and the lockdowns in the EU affected our remote team. We can appreciate this meaning something different to different people. But yes. It was a dramatic change to just STOP working on things outside of editing, then have to get back into it. When you pick up a game you hadn't played in months, without a final rulebook, it takes a few times of playing to be fully back into it (for us).
Anyways, enough talk for now. April's update should have a look at a Final Scenario sheet, and depending on when we know about said partnership, we will let you know :D