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May 22nd, 2014, 07:21
Bare Mettle released a new status update a few weeks back on the games forum. It talks about the games combat alpha, and a few other performance related issues.

As you've probably noticed we've discontinued development of the combat alpha. This is because we're focusing on other aspects of the game needed for the prelude. The feedback and testing from the combat alpha has been very useful. We've gotten to a point where the game is solid with very few minor bugs remaining that have mostly already been fixed and in terms of combat we're aware what the major issues are and also working to resolve them. There will inevitably be many improvements to be made to combat and animation in general but we think it's more important to broaden the scope for future releases.

Since the last combat alpha release we've been working on getting a number of important things to a complete enough state. First amongst these is finalising and putting together all the AI components necessary to have multiple characters moving and fighting in complex environments. While there's been a huge amount of work put into this already a lot of it was still more experimental than complete and we've been working on new and significant improvements in terms of spatial awareness, dynamic obstacles and combat tactics. An important feature here is also the ability to be able to thoroughly customise all behaviour on a per character basis. Some of this applies to just combat and it's likely we'll release a new combat alpha featuring improvements soon.

Another major area of development has been revising the workflow for underworld (and some other) environments. We've extended our tools to allow for a much more streamlined and rapid workflow while also allowing for more varied environments. We've been rebuilding assests to fit this new system and to higher quality standards, future assets will also be much easier to develop. The workflow is now incredibly fast and intuitive, we can already see how this is allowing us to experiment and focus much more on design rather than getting bogged down in the work itself.

Finally we've been bringing into action some plans to improve character physics performance so as to support more active characters at once. Some early tests show that we may be able to support significantly more characters than we originally thought and this has some pretty significant implications for the game.

There are some other very significant things we've been working on but at this point they would seem like a bit of a spoiler. Hopefully you'll be able to see them yourself before long and we're also planning to release a new development video soon.

We're still unsure what our first non combat alpha release should be. The basic options for an early alpha release would be the early content for the prelude in a somewhat incomplete state or something more along the lines of a free-form test environment. The latter has the advantage of not spoling the prelude experience while also potentially providing a more open testing platform.
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May 22nd, 2014, 07:21
hope dark souls 2 added a wee bit of inspiration also
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May 23rd, 2014, 15:19
I hope beginning combat isn't as sloppy as it looked in earlier videos. It may be true that a person with no experience would wave a sword around like someone trying to swat a butterfly with a sledgehammer, but it wouldn't actually be fun to play.
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May 23rd, 2014, 18:20
It still sounds like they are trying to take on too much, given their limited budget. I mean, underwater environments? That seems like something that should have been saved for a follow-on release.
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