We've been seeing a lot of requests on the forums and Discord to be a bit more transparent about our development process and what's coming soon and when. We want the community to be a part of these discussions and to be excited by the future of the game, so I'm here to lay down the roadmap for the next 3-4 months of development on the game.
The last time we talked, we had decided to lay everything out into nice, neat "Content Patches", which we thought would be a good way to create major events in the community when they went out. Now that we've done Content Patch One (or most of it, more on that later), what we've realized is that this isn't a great approach for us. The game is still developing and changing very quickly, and we want to keep up that pace. We don't want to sit on new content for several weeks just so we can get other stuff done and release it all at once. It also gives players something new to come back and see more often, which is good for the overall health of the community.
So, with that in mind, we've gone back and re-worked our development schedule to be more frequent and small "sprints" of content. All the same stuff from Content Patch Two and Three is still here (plus even more stuff), but some of the order has been shifted around a little. Without further ado, here we go.
Sprint One: Launches March 5th
Our first sprint (which is going on right now) is going to focus on some of the issues that have been affecting the game for a while now, including:
- Re-working the tutorial to be faster and more streamlined
- Adding in some really basic "kill quests" for Levels 16-20 until we get Act 3 done
- A new Beta branch which supports Oculus Dash
- Major performance improvements
- Fixing the PvP Arena
- Re-working the Warrior hit detection one last time
One thing I want to point out on this sprint, is that we are generally pushing back Act 3's story content in favor of a few other things (like the Talent System). But we know right now there is a big "gap" between 16 and 20 which is basically filled with long, arduous grinding. So we're going to put in some basic quests just to help with that hump until the Act 3 story content is out.
Sprint Two: March 19th
The major focus of this sprint will be the introduction of the new Talent System. We'll start writing up previews of that as we begin to finalize it, but essentially this will be a major combat overhaul to each class opening up new and interesting ways to play them.
We're also going to be introducing tabs for the Journal as well as some gear for the Fishing class.
Sprint Three: March 30th
Sprint Three will see the introduction of the Shard Dungeons, our hardmode dungeons which will challenge our most experienced groups.
Sprint Four: April 11th
Sprint Four will see a totally new piece of gameplay come to OrbusVR in the form of a major overhaul to our pet system. We're still finalizing all the details of this, but essentially you'll be able to raise your dragon from an egg, breed them with other dragons to create new and interesting looks and colors, and more. This is going to be a fun, new social component to the world that we are very excited about.
Sprint Five: April 23rd
Sprint Five will see us finally holding the official Tournament of Mages live event as well as introducing the third World Boss in the Tradu Mines dungeon. We'll also be expanding the Fishing class to introduce very rare fish as well as additional fishing quests.
Note that both the Tournament of Mages and the World Boss are getting pushed back about 4-6 weeks from when we originally wanted them to come out. Basically this is for two reasons. One, there is a lot of underlying technology that we need to build to make viewing the Tournament of Mages go how we want, where everyone can watch it in real-time, as opposed to just streaming it on Twitch or something like that. Secondly, we decided that the Talent System needed to take priority over the World Boss, and then we decided we didn't want to delay the Shard Dungeons even further by slotting the World Boss in ahead of them. So both of these are still coming, but they are going to be a bit delayed while we put in a few other things first.
Sprint Six: May 7th
Sprint Six will see the introduction of our Act 3 story content, which will set up the Necropolar and reveal the setting of the Raids. We'll also be bringing some new mechanics to the PvP side of the game.
Sprint Seven: May 28th
Sprint Seven will introduce our Raid dungeons, which are hard, challenging content for groups of ten players.
Whew! That's a lot of content coming out in just the next three months. Of course in addition to all of this we'll be doing a lot of other work, including re-working the overworld to better match our new art style, continue putting out bug fixes, running community events, and just generally working with you all to keep making the game awesome.
This is a very ambitious schedule but we think we can make it happen, so here we go!