Archive for April, 2012

State of the Game, April 2012

With so many new feature and performance releases for Conclave in the past couple of months, and with dramatic increases in our audience over the same period, we realized it was time for a properly comprehensive look at what we’ve been doing, what Conclave players have been doing, and what you can look forward to in the near future.

While Conclave was technically released in October of 2011, we didn’t really start talking about it until mid-February.  Since then, traffic to Conclave has quadrupled, thanks in large part to players spreading the word.  As we hoped, all those new players gave us a lot more information to work with in identifying good and bad parts of the game; not only could we see, numerically, where players were getting hung up, but our fabulous players also gave (and continue to give) us tons of helpful feedback through UserVoice.

Mid-February also saw a major feature release for Conclave.  Some of the biggest changes:

  • Players could join parties mid-quest for the first time, instead of having to wait for the party to finish their quest to do so.
  • We opened all quests up to solo play, not just the very first.
  • We added new ways to invite other players, like posted links and Facebook.
  • We updated quest selection from a simple list of available quests to our new map-based approach.

And so on; you can find the full changelog here.

As our traffic picked up and we began to gather more feedback, we used it to guide additional changes to the game:

  • We launched our first gameplay video to help new players more quickly understand the game.
  • We added new email controls that give players the option to turn off unwanted email notifications (eliminating many spam reports!).
  • Clickable terrain graphics were introduced, providing advance warning of hurtful (and helpful) terrain.
  • We added many performance improvements, including a 3x reduction in lag time between one player acting and the next seeing the result.

So what about the future?  Per Yoda, “Difficult to see. Always in motion is the future.”  But here are some things we expect to do soon:

  • Show you who in your party is currently online while you are playing or chatting.
  • Provide a better system for finding other people to play with.  Specifically, we want to be able to find players in similar time zones, and/or with similar expectations for how often they’ll play.
  • Loot!  You want it, we want it, you’ll get it.

It’s been a big couple of months, and we plan to keep that momentum going in months to come.  Let us know if you have any questions, and we’ll do our best to answer them!

Sometimes it’s difficult to get a tabletop RPG going in person: friends move away, or you just don’t live in an area where many people want to play. Since the three of us at 10×10 Room are divided between two major cities, we know what that’s like.

To help with that, we’ve created Bones, a dice-rolling app for Google+ Hangouts. If you’ve never tried one before, a Hangout is a group video chat that supports extra features like screen sharing. With Bones, now you can roll dice and share the results with gamers no matter where they live:

Bones for Hangouts Screenshot

To play with Bones, you’ll need a Google+ profile. Then click this button to kick off a Hangout with the app:

Start a Hangout with Bones

After that, you’ll be able to select Bones from any Hangout you kick off; you won’t have to keep using the button. Check it out and let us know what you think!

p.s. Hangouts are also handy for playing our web-based RPG Conclave face-to-face.

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