Super Early Closed Alpha Run

Yesterday I released a very early alpha version of All Ships Must Sink to a group of close friends. The game is far from anything I will eventually be. Gameplay is very linear, it lacks pretty much all features expect the very basics. I knew it would still have bugs (it did haha). It didn’t feel great to show a product that doesn’t feel finished to people and still I knew this was the right thing to do.

Because even though only a hand full of people played the game yesterday, I got a ton of great feedback already. From small UX things like “double clicking to place a turret doesn’t feel good” to deep questions about story line and level progression.

I don’t know if this is a the case for all developers but I know I get tunnel vision very easily. Having a couple of fresh eyes play the game and give me feedback is so important. It makes me realize I was wrong about certain assumptions. Which is great. Because now I can easily change them instead of continue to build on them for months and months.

I sent out a tweet today with a quick video (with bounce, I’m sorry I’m trying to be hip) showing in the current state, the slowing towers are too OP haha. Although balance is not high on the priority list at the moment, it does need some balancing to have a playable alpha. The tweet got some unexpected attention (12 favorites and 5 retweets as I’m writing this), which feels amazing! Anyway, here’s the tweet:

Quick preview video of the first alpha version on iPad. Sorry about the quality, I recorded this with my phone that was filming my iPad (yikes).

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