Red Barton and The Sky Pirates Update 1

Hello all, and welcome to first official patch update of Red Barton and The Sky Pirates.

Todays update of the game includes various smaller but also bigger fixes and improvements that were being cooked and tested in past weeks, and that are generally selected and implemented in this update to improve the overall game user experience and stability of the game.

More work (and content) is being done, and we are discussing the ways to make and release even larger update, with more enemies, levels, skins, upgrades – but there is not a strict schedule on that – it also depends on your support.

Meanwhile, we are sharing with you the current state of the game, hoping you will recognize our sincere efforts to make this game as good as possible. Although it is not official released as Early Access, please treat it like it is – and the price will be dropped accordingly.

Thank you.

 

Changelog:

– improved object collisions.
– fixed pre-level comics sometimes not reacting to ‘skip’ mouse event. alternatively to on-screen buttons, you can use left mouse button to skip single page, right mouse button to skip whole sequence.
– improved boss fights on all levels.
– improved shooter ai, both on bosses and ingame.
– fixed all powerups and upgrades to behave as intended.
– double/triple split shooter upgrade improved.
– added magnet effect for easier powerup and coin pickups.
– fixed various situations with current airplane level visually triggering wrong model, mostly in damage situations.
– fixed various situations where cursor is needed but hidden (use shortcut Q to force mouse if needed).
– improved overall game performance (cleanups and optimizations).
– new enemy bullets with trailing effects – origin of incoming bullets is now easier to detect and comprehend.
– new enemy rockets with optimized effects.
– new player bullets and effects.
– fixed texture mappings on various models.
– fixed realtime update of guns/rockets level when upgrading in hangar.
– fixed languages.

NOTE: Before you go fidling with difficulty settings, we suggest you play in NORMAL mode (default on fresh installation) rather than EASY (which is just too easy) or GOOD LUCK (which is exactly as it’s title says – you probably wont come far – unless your plane is heavy upgraded).

official post https://steamcommunity.com/games/540590/announcements/detail/2171147026199802523

steam store page http://store.steampowered.com/app/540590

 

More like beta…

Hello there, our dear community.

We, the dev team, want to thank you for interest in our game and all feedback that we received so far – both good and bad.

It was – and still is – our intention to make a cute lite shooter game, which we may have failed for some, but to those (and all others) we are here to announce that we are not finished yet, and that both windows and mac versions of the game will continue to mature until it becomes what it was meant to be.

It is our intention to continue to provide patches at least once a week, with bug fixes but also new content, until all things are polished to the point it was intended. It may take a few weeks, but we will get there, and hope to see you at the other end – which we will certainly celebrate with gifts for everyone who supported our work, especially those who bought our game.

Meanwhile, a separate team is doing marvelous work for mobile (android and ios) version which already looks so nice that it gives us thoughts of possibly retrofitting some of the new stuff that was being developed on mobile version to desktop version as well – of course, only if it is an improvement.

For those who are interested in the reasons, the reasons it went this way are the oldest in the book – time frames, release dates, lack of experience, postponements, real-life distractions – you name it. As a new and inexperienced team which started with just a 3 people, it was almost inevitable… We not only worked hard on challenges of making this through as our first game, we also wanted it to be multi-platform, to have 11 language translations, and even to work nice on mobile devices – bite a bit too big for our little team stretched from Serbia to Canada, with United States and France in between.

So we worked, and postponed and postponed, but then the clock ran out and the game had to be published. Yes we know now the game maybe should have been released in some other form, like early access or open beta, but you can add that to our non-experience and bad judgment as well.

With best hopes, to the sky and away!

yours truly
Schism Studio Belgrade

Red Barton – Road to Alpha

Red Barton – Road To Alpha is in front of you. By far the most important update so far, and a major milestone on our schedule! This is what Red Barton road to alpha looks like, and this is the short story of how it came to be – straight from the dev-team of Schism Worldwide

The time has come for reflecting on where we were at the beginning and where we are now. We will describe the effort that took us from an idea to a fully finished playable level in less than 3 months.

This might not sound like much of an achievement for the established game factories out there, but it’s quite a lot for an indie studio at the beginning of it’s journey. Needless to say – we achieved a lot with little time, considering that our core Red Barton team has only one “pure” developer Jakov Jerkovic.

This has been a gargantuan task, as we are technically working on two completely different games, PC / Mac version, and an iOS and Android port. That means two completely different approaches, hi-poly vs low poly models, speed optimizations and to make it actually work for all these platforms, with Android being a spectacular challenge due to the variety of devices and OS versions on the market.

Jakov is working in tandem with Igor Djordjevic, our CTO & a jack-of-all-trades, who is helping him out while juggling his daily obligations. This was particularly important regarding hundreds of daily decisions, small and large, that had to be made in order to balance the game between artist wishes and technical possibilities. Sounds familiar?

Ah, the joy of indie game development. The nature of our business truly is small & efficient ๐Ÿ˜‰

The team also had to work around the clock to make Red Bartonย  is both aesthetically pleasing and playable. All the years of accumulated team experience as gamers & gaming technology enthusiasts certainly came in handy.

Red Barton – The First Steps

It all began in March 2016 with concepts and sketches presented to us by game designer Kosta Zdravkovic. We immediately began prepping his assets so we could use them in Unity 3D, the game engine of our studio’s choice.

And as soon as the first 3D models started pouring in, we were able to put together some basic airplane mechanics – flying the first version of Red Barton into a line of non-textured gates with mounted but ‘dead’ turrets and objects. It looked very basic, but it worked, and our artists were able to make a first test flight.

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A few days later, a new test build included some basic rendering improvements, like distance fog and color correction, still using partially textured level mock-up.

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The First Elements

With textured models arriving, a new map was created. We made another mock-up 3D world to see the elements we had at the time. It was also a good moment to test some new rendering FX, which brought us to a new build, internally numbered v2.

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The First Level

A month and a half into the project, the first version of a complete level was prepared for inclusion in the game. For our next important milestone we would have a level with static enemies, textures, trees and even some airborne units. Other than enemies shooting at us, we could now see what the populated areas look like, and of course – it was also great timing for another batch of rendering FX improvements.

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Just a few days later, smoke and explosions were added for effect.

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And very soon, enemies got the ability to see us – and they started shooting with high accuracy. Maybe even with TOO much accuracy. We had to dial it down eventually. There’s no feeling like having problems beating your own game. ๐Ÿ™‚

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The Sphere

So, a little over two months into the project, we were satisfied with our progress, but still thinking about going back to one of the major early ideas that was cast aside for a while – make the map more spherical, and instead of flying and shooting on a straight line, make it look and feel like flying over a small planet.

The decision was made to convert the current flat map to a spherical shape, quite an effort to do without destroying too many things, but after a few weeks of work, we had it up & running. And, lo and behold – after a major cleanup of the world, re-positioning of enemies and adjusting their attack rate and accuracy, we were ready to release a new build.

That of course meant also doing a lot of extra work on the visuals, improved models with moving and animated parts, and dealing with details like object world orientation, joints, elevation, etc.

Oh, and also – rockets.

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The Boss

At this point, it was time to meet the Boss of the level. It was also obvious that we needed to scale up the ground units to make objects better fit to each other after all these changes to the map. We did that for the latest build, included a change of controls in the boss arena, and along with our latest batch of FX improvements – this is what the Red Barton alpha looks like.

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The Next Steps

Having all major components working, what’s left to do is implementing the smooth UX design, game proofing the level, tweaking damage/health balance and level elements before we go into making a next build.

Meanwhile, we are also working on code optimization of game logicย  and speed enhancements. So when the game is finished and you finally have it on your desktopm phone or tablet, it will not only look nice but also play smooth and easy!

Stay tuned for more updates!