I cannot say how humbled I am by what we raised so far. It is our very first time on KickStarter, and it has been a huge morale boost for the team to see you post and share about the campaign, and to see more people join our little family day after day. Your support and your enthusiasm is why we pull long hours at work, and take pride in our creations.
We know many of you have asked about console versions for We Happy Few, and we wanted to make sure we kept you guys in the loop on what we’re doing about it. As you may know, our last game Contrast has already shipped on five platforms, four on release, and we have no doubt that we can bring the same technical expertise to We Happy Few.
However, coming to console requires extensive discussions with our console partners. The more interested they are in the game, the longer those discussions tend to be. Sam and I are packing our bags today for E3, where we will be meeting and showcasing the game with Microsoft and Sony. We don’t think we’ll have firm answers for you by the time we come back (decisions rarely happen in the middle of trade shows), but we’re working hard on it, and we’ll prioritize the opportunities that allow us to make a better game over selling more copies.
The road ahead
You’ve also asked - where is this game headed? Every good game team has a solid roadmap towards completion, and we’ve been hard at work planning the next few months of development. However, because We Happy Few is built on generation and systems, we don’t simply tack on additional tidbits of story and content to “make the game longer”.
Instead, we’ve been developing the game in layers. With each successive update we implement, the game has progressively gotten deeper, and the experience of replaying it has become more compelling.
Last month - we introduced a whole new Biome, the wastes, to the city’s generation ecosystem, along with rivers and bridges. In doing so, we also introduced Wastrels; cast-outs of Wellington Wells for which Joy seems to fail. Although this new biome is still in its infancy, we created a faction system for our AIs, so they are no longer always on the same team. When the update went live, we watched as players started dragging angry mobs over bridges to create distractions while they snuck past our carefully laid out barricades; it was - admittedly - social engineering at its best. =)
This month, we’re spending a large portion of our time adding content and variety to ensure that your replay sessions are different and fresh each time you play. We’re also adding more lore and story elements to the biome that make it feel like more like Wellington Wells, and not “just another bombed out English countryside”. On the game-play side, the team has been looking at incorporating more traditional stealth game-play, to expand the amount of player choice in dealing with conflict and expanding our security systems.
Next month marks a very special milestone for us, as (if all goes well) we’ll start working directly with the hundreds of you who have given us your confidence by signing up for Pre-Alpha access. We’re actually very excited by this, and have planned to split our work efforts to directly address your feedback on the game while we take a deeper look at what happens during the night in the city. We’ll also move my high-tech planning system to a format that is easier for us to share, so that you guys can stay better informed of what’s coming up.
E3 and You!
As always - and especially this week - when the press’s attention will be on the large announcements surrounding big-name publishers at the conference, we are dependent on your help to share the word and vote of confidence among your friends and family to hop on board the Joy-train early and support what I know will become an amazing game. Thank you for being our champions: rest assured that we will work very hard to make you feel special for it.
As a first small thing we want to do, while the rest of the team holds the fort this week, Sam and I will have some limited time outside of meetings to go explore the show-floor. So if you guys have special requests for games that you want to see or hear about, let us know in the comments and we’ll do our best to go check them out. We’ll give you what feedback we can, unless the lines are too long - in which case, we’ll take a shot of us in our We Happy Few shirts at their booths! :)
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