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Behind the scenes information about EpicDuel's development and releases, a real-time PVP MMO that you can play online in your web browser.

December 20, 2012

Omega Announcement

All the coffee in the world couldn't release Omega today

Hey guys,

I have some pretty bad news to share. The EpicDuel Omega release will not be ready in time for Christmas and will need to be delayed until after the new year. The team has gone to absolute insane lengths to put in the best possible effort to create what is effectively a brand new game. I have never worked harder in my life on anything, and I think I can speak for the team in saying the same for them.  I'm incredibly impressed by everyone's dedication, and for that reason, I'm extremely disappointed that we couldn't showcase their efforts in time for the holiday.  Honestly, it makes me sick that it's not ready, but I'm out of options at this point.

We did not take this decision lightly.  This week is our fourth straight week of 7 days a week, minimum 15 hours per day.  We've had several meetings discussing where we could cut, and how we could trim the release to be able to get things out on time. Last week, when we announced the delay from Dec 14 to Dec 20, we made the tough decision to cut several features that we previously thought were critical to the release. I thought with these cuts and our strongest effort that we could get Omega out in time. I was wrong and I'll take the blame for miscalculating the requirements.  


"Scary Town"

I wanted to share briefly why this release is so important, why it's taking so long: Over the course of several months and numerous meetings, we compiled a list the primary reasons why someone might not enjoy playing EpicDuel.  Additionally, we wrote down every issue in our development pipeline that was overly tedious, or limiting in what was possible. This list is known as "Scary Town". The goal of the EpicDuel Omega release is to crush "Scary Town." Some of the major issues we want to solve include improving the initial gameplay experience, speeding up the development time on new skills and items, eliminating the plague of power creep, and removing loads of restrictions that create a bad experience for players and ultimately hurt the game itself.


Battle Engine:

The battle engine is the main sticking point for why we're unable to release on time.  It's an all or nothing proposal.  Unlike other features that we can cut, the engine either is ready or it isn't... and in this case it isn't.  There are currently 87 abilities that need to be recreated on the new engine just to get back to zero.  I've taken on this task personally, and so far I've only recreated about 70 of the skills.  The remaining incomplete ones include Robot abilities and item specials.  Once those are complete, I can move forward creating the new special abilities for our Omega promotional items and the new Yetis.
Last night around 3am I was getting overrun with bugs from our testing staff.  I was unable to knock out these final abilities and as a result, the engine is not stable enough to release going into Christmas.  I'm not going to chance pushing it and risk having catastrophe over the holiday, especially a thoroughly gutted release that would lack many key features. 

Again, we understand that this is a tremendous disappointment to all of our players, but especially our most hardcore loyal players. We tried to think of something we could do with what we've built so far. We thought about releasing a last-minute, best-in-game ubersword of doom, but that would fly in the face of everything we're trying to achieve with Omega.
Here's what we're going to do -- we're going to offer the Omega Onslaughter/Impaler, Obliterator/Slayer, both Yetis, and an Omega Ticket that grants access to a month-long contest for the price of one 5-key package. When you buy this package you will receive a ticket that will guarantee you receive the items as soon as Omega officially goes live in January early February.  After Omega goes live, we will split the Obliterator and Onslaughter into 2 separate packages as planned, but those who preordered will already have it all and be able to participate in the competition without delay! 
Preorder and Be Yeti for the Yetis
In the mean time, we are going to push a small content release out of some seasonal rares items, and we're going to setup the Baby Yeti and Dark Yeti so the HeroMart T-shirt items are ready. The shirts are available NOW. Other than that we'll be holding onto the Omega release until after the new year.
Are you Yeti to wear a Yeti?


Yeti Chomp


Yeti Kick


Golden Yeti Competition

I've got a golden ticket!
Oh, yes, I suppose I forgot to mention a 2-week competition in which the top 100 participants will receive an Ultra-Rare Golden Yeti. There will be an ongoing leaderboard showing the current rankings for the duration of the event. This Yeti WILL NOT be available any other way, and you can only win it if you have a Golden Yeti Ticket. If successful, we can evolve this competition into a full-blown tournament feature going forward into Omega.


Going Forward:

I felt it was important to explain why things are delayed.  I remain 100% confident that Omega will be EpicDuel's most successful release to date, and I know it will expand the life and playerbase of the game dramatically. When we cut down to the core of the issue, all that really matters is the health of EpicDuel. This news is disappointing, but disappointment fades. Once Omega is polished and live, it will absolutely have been worth the wait. 

Thanks for your support. It has been a stressful time for the ED team, but with your support, we can complete Omega and usher in 2013 as the greatest year in EpicDuel's history!
Duel On!

Tags: Titan


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