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Jester

Beyond Ascension

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This topic is to explain our intentions for what we are bringing to the table, a collective of inspiration, strategy, and alike we plan to stick with to ultimately bring a good title our, and continue to do so for future projects under Affray Studios.


Tutorials

We will be having a mandated tutorial for SCP: Ascension and will likely carry it across all of our titles to ensure players know how to play, optimizing control schemes in a real-time way in concentrated test environments so players know how to scheme the game to themselves, and an entertaining narrator to really pull you in and making sure it doesn't feel like a chore. We have taken huge inspiration from the Stanley Parable, and we will be making our narrator very similar, on a smaller scale, of course. 

Here is a list for sake of convenience:

  • Narrator you can mess with and that will get frustrated the more you intentionally disobey him. 
  • The tutorial sequence will help you optimize your personal control scheme and configuration to best suit you and your style.
  • You will learn the core mechanics within congested and practical ways of teaching you as quickly, but efficiently as possible. 
  • The tutorial will be forced once, the first time playing. We will save that you've done it on the cloud so you won't have to worry about it again.
  • All data you generate in general will be stored on the cloud so you won't worry about losing your configurations and alike, unless you, of course, opt out.
  • We also plan on some popular faces (literally) popping in as some sub-tier tutorial characters for different segments. 
  • You can kill the narrator.

     

Meta Characters

This is more of us just fucking around, but we kinda fell in love with the idea of creating emote faces for the default UE4 mannequins with an arrangement of colors (and female variants) to test the game without having to worry about the detailed characters early on. They will mainly be seen in future development livetreams (devstreams), but we assume we are gonna get a couple laughs from 'em. Our 'false' lore around them is that they are servants of the game itself, kinda in the same realm as the narrator and tutorial characters and they have "contracts" to hunt bugs down and destroy them. We probably drank too much that night, but we are doing it nonetheless, we have no shame.

 

Issues & Our Confrontation

Some concerns have been thrown around regarding our release strategy and our primary focuses and our ways of confronting the issues with our custom, unorthodox plans. The first and foremost is the fact that we are releasing on multiple PC distribution stores, and are also gonna be hosting preorders outside of Steam to avoid their 30% take and to break up the monopoly where we can. There are a couple of issues some will see in this course of action, and rightfully so for the most part.

Tech/platform issues:

  • Steam will more than likely not bring us to their front page on our release, mostly due to the fact their algorithm intentionally disfavors games that do not use Steam solely on PC, especially those that sell Steam keys outside of Steam (e.x. preorders, direct sells/backers, etc) - which is allowed by Steam, they just generally punish it.
  • Ensuring cross-play and ensuring both servers and mod support are not segregated and fractured. 
  • Saturated market, a lot of SCP games are being made with similar ideas.

As for Steam's algorithmic bias, we will be focussing on developing a feasible method of not relying on Steam, as a whole. We think this is our best course anyway since this will ensure either way this goes, we will have a healthy initial influx when we start this up officially. If Steam magically throws us on the front page on our release, it will do us really, really well. We are simply just not gonna focus on that being the make-or-break scenario. 

For ensuring cross-connectivity, we have a few plans in place for this to be successful and healthy. We will not be utilizing Steamworks at all. This means there will be zero native Steam integration within our game, as they disallow distribution onto any other platform that's paid. So, we decided to cover that on our own and get some alternatives that are store-agnostic. First and foremost, is we are gonna be utilizing Epic Games' Online Services. It is non-store dependant and covers all the features Steam does, and then some. As it's not all publicly released yet, it will be worth the wait for its utilization. 

For mod support, as you may already have some concerns with since we aren't using Steamworks, we will be utilizing mod.io. This platform was created as a non-store bound mod distribution tool that has the same functionality as the Steam Workshop. Some additions to it, there will be a native donation system within that that will have a small cut go to us, and the bigger portion going to the mod creator. We, as it currently stands, will take no more than 12%, 88% to the player. This will help us have some small cash flow, as well as the creators being able to continue content creation and maybe have what they made curated into the official game.

For confronting the fact of the SCP fanbase becoming really saturated, we have decided to full-force ourselves into the tactical shooter genre. This, in itself, has not been done by other SCP creators. We will also be using our position to advertise outside of the SCP intercommunity. This way, we have the biggest chance of getting ourselves out there and gaining overall interest. We love tactical shooters and their communities already, so this just kind of works out for us. Black Site has picked us up already and talk to us really actively - even responding on most of our social media posts at the current rate. So, needless to say, we will do extremely fine with not depending on SCP solely. We are treating SCP as our lore, and not our primary target for advertising towards, but it still is a big factor, of course. You can see what we are doing is taking the elevator instead of the stairs in terms of release growth.

 

Competitions & Curation

We plan on, if our game does wonders, of course, to host money-rewarded tournaments to see who is on top of the food chain. We have a lot of fun plans for this, but we are not sure if and when it will happen - and how frequently.

We will also definitely have a keen eye on mod creation, where we will see what we can easily integrate, or spiritually integrate off of great ideas to our standard. We may even pay people for their great ideas if we end up curating them. 

We also plan on doing competitions for curations, this will mainly boil down to maps and alike, although, if it works out, we will likely even release story tools for people to create narrative stories alongside their levels with relative ease (compared to making a game from scratch). We have a lot of great ideas, but it really depends on how well things actually go, as everything else.

 

Cinematic Tools

We really love modding, development, story, and so much more. One thing we see oh-so commonly overlooked, however, is cinematic tools. We have a lot of great friends like Evan Royalty amongst other machinima/filmmakers that would really love some easy-to-use and effective tools to bring cinematic visions to life. Although, when/if we come to making this, we won't limit it to them... it will be usable by everyone. An easy way to reconcile you with our visions is to explain it like this:  It will be heavily inspired by the Rockstar Editor, however, you will be able to bring in custom levels, characters, dialogue, and so, so much more with the other modding tools. We even plan to deliver spline pathing tools, scenario behaviors, and a whole lot more for you to achieve your cinematic vision. 

You will also be able to record in-game moments and edit them by switching camera positions and alike, basically what other games like Grand Theft Auto V, Rocket League, and alike to already - the basic end of the tools, pretty much.

Most tools we want/have made are not meant just for SCP content creation, it's for content creation. We really want a huge emphasis on that.

 

Creator & Community Program

To sum this up really quickly without getting into the nitty gritty, we will be hosting a paid influencer program, so whenever people refer to our Xsolla preorder page, the (chosen/verified) referrer they will get 10-20% commission for helping us out! Requirements are still undefined, but we hope this will help drive more sales while rewarding partnered communities, creators, and alike for helping us out! 

 

Publishing Wing
If all goes well with our titles and if our partners choose to help us in the long run, we decided on the very high possibility of running our own publishing company with extremely friendly terms for some great resources for getting smaller creators off the ground to make big games. We will be naming this Element Publishing - we do not want to control, constrain, or exploit like a majority of publishers do - we want to bring a modern look to what publishing should be in the digital age, while not lingering on outdated standards. We plan to start this up when we release SCP: Ascension into Early Access with Blackout.

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1 hour ago, Xenomorphian said:

Hold up 

i would love any game if they let you do that 

I mean, we all would probally love it anyways

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Killing a narrator has been my biggest dream ever since i was 1 years old. i still want to play the game for all the other reasons but this improves the experience 

also i've been hearing of these dev streams for a long time now when are they coming.

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