The Siralim Ultimate beta test has begun! Beta keys have been sent to all backers who purchased one. Check your spam folder – if you don’t see your key in a few hours, let me know. If you’re already an alpha tester, you don’t need to do anything. Enjoy the game!
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios podcast! In this episode, I’m going to reveal the roadmap for Siralim Ultimate’s beta phase.
As you know, beta testing begins on November 12. If you’re already an alpha tester, nothing will change for you – you’ll be able to use the same Steam key for both alpha and beta, so you’ll be able to play the game like normal. If you’re waiting on a beta key, expect to see it in your e-mail by around 1pm or 2pm EST. The e-mail will contain all the information you need to learn how to activate your Steam key and start playing the game.
While we’re on this subject, I just want to thank all of our alpha testers for the valuable feedback they provided over the last couple months. With your help, the game is extremely stable right now, and honestly, I think from a gameplay perspective, it’s rock-solid as well. The only major complaint I saw during alpha testing was regarding realm properties, and after making a few adjustments to those, I really haven’t seen any core gameplay elements that players are unhappy with. That’s great news, since it means I can spend all my time on adding new content to the game rather than having to go back and re-do old gameplay systems.
So, with all of that said, let’s talk about what you can expect to see during beta testing. Now, keep in mind that I might not have time to fit all of this into beta – if that’s the case, you’ll see the rest of this content show up early on in the Early Access phase instead.
First, I’m going to add the Mailbox decoration to the game. Actually, I’m almost done with this one, so you can expect to see it very soon. The mailbox has two functions: first, it allows me to send you guys items and messages. When you load your save file, the game will retrieve messages and items from our server and you’ll be able to collect them by interacting with your mailbox. Generally, I’ll hand out items for special events or to celebrate things like the game’s launch. The other function the mailbox has is that it allows you to input codes, or passwords, or whatever you want to call them to receive items. You might be familiar with this functionality if you played Siralim 3 – it’ll work exactly like Blanche, where you input a code and you can receive an item. I’m planning to make the mailbox a lot more interesting than Blanche’s password system was, though, and I’m hoping to use it a lot more frequently. I have some fun ideas to weave backer content into it as well, but that’s a topic for another time.
Next, as you might have guessed based on our last major content patch, I’m working on the Gate of the Gods. The Gate of the Gods allows you to challenge any of the 21 gods to a fight. These are all really challenging fights, and you can choose the difficulty level you want to fight them at. In order to challenge a god to a fight, you’ll need to collect keys to the Gate of the Gods by either defeating Nether Bosses and collecting their key fragments, or by completing a new mission that rewards you with keys. After you defeat a god, you’ll gain Mana for it just like a normal creature. The higher the difficulty level you chose to fight the god at, the more mana you’ll receive. After you reach 100% Mana, you can summon that god’s Avatar, which is a creature that looks exactly like that god and has a really powerful trait. In addition, Avatars have an exclusive Ultimate Spell Gem. Ultimate Spell Gems only have 1 Charge, but they recharge after each battle. If you’re strategic enough, you can find ways to build your party around these Ultimate Spell Gems and allow your Avatar to cast these spells multiple times in battle. You can only have one Avatar in your party at a time, so you’ll need to choose wisely. Unlike in Siralim 3, there isn’t any infinite progression planned for Avatars – I don’t want them to get too out of control and make your other creatures obsolete this time. However, I will probably add some additional rewards for the Gate of the Gods in the future. Oh, and I almost forgot: you can fuse your Avatars as well!
Another major system I’ve been working on lately is the addition of Rodian Creature Masters. Each creature race has its own master, which is an NPC you’ll find in realms that uses creatures from that race. When you talk to them, they’ll challenge you to a battle. These are fairly challenging fights – they’re easier than Nether Bosses, but they’re still pretty tough. A master will spawn in every single realm, and the type of master that spawns is based on the creatures that can spawn in that realm – so for example, if you want to fight the Angel master, you might want to visit Surathli’s realm since Angels normally spawn there. There are a lot of achievements for defeating masters – in fact, you’ll earn an achievement for every single master for each kill up to 10 kills. In addition, each master has a chance to drop a race-specific trait material. These materials are really, really strong. A lot of you will probably end up building your entire team around them if you want. They all incentivize you to create a team of creatures that belong to that master’s specific race. As an example, the trait material for Apocalypses causes your Apocalypse creatures to act as if they take 2 turns at a time. That’s a really useful trait since it pretty much doubles the effectiveness of all your Apocalypses’ traits since their traits grow more powerful based on the number of turns they take. Each master also has an exclusive wardrobe costume for you to unlock, and these are all ridiculously cool because they’re basically sets of armor that are made out of body parts of creatures that belong to the master’s race. If you’ve played Monster Hunter before, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. Speaking of wardrobe costumes, after you defeat a master enough times, you’ll also unlock the ability to dress your character up as any creature from that master’s race. A lot of you have been asking for this for a long time now, and now you’ll finally be able to turn into a Dryad Raincaller or a Twisted Devil or whatever else you want. But that’s not all! Each time you defeat a master, you’ll also earn Mastery for that master’s race as well. Each point of mastery not only makes it easier for your creatures to kill enemies from that race, but it also empowers your own creatures from that race as well. There’s a cap of 50 Mastery per race, but that means you’d need to kill each master 50 times to hit the cap… so yeah, there’s realistically not a cap. Well, ok, I’ll probably regret saying that. Anyway, the final thing I want to mention about masters is that they’re entirely optional. There won’t be a realm quest to kill them, so you’ll never feel obligated to kill one if you don’t want to. There will be a Prophecy for these, but that’s it.
I’ve also been hard at work on new specializations. I’ve already designed the perks, Nieve has already finished the icons for the perks, and JC is working on costumes for them. I’m slowly chipping away at implementing them, and I will definitely add at least a few of them during beta. Some are really complex, while others are extremely straightforward. I think you guys are going to like them. They open up a lot of new playstyles, and some of them make you think about the game in a whole different way. You won’t be able to start the game as these new specializations because I don’t want to overwhelm new players with the ability to choose from 25, or even 30 specializations, so you’ll need to unlock these by completing a Project instead. Easy enough.
Creature Accessories are on the way as well. We don’t have too many yet – maybe 50 or so – but they look great so far. One example is a fiery aura that can be placed behind your creatures. I want to stress that accessories are just for looks, but they look really great and I think you guys will have fun customizing your creatures with them. You probably won’t find accessories in normal loot – they’ll probably be given to you as rewards for doing really crazy things, or maybe I’ll add a few to some of the game’s shops.
Another thing that I want to work on is adding more Nether Realms to the game. I think there are only what, 1 or 2 right now? Maybe 3? I don’t remember. I have plans for at least 20 more, so I’d like to start adding a few of those whenever I can to shake things up. I’m sure you guys are sick of running into the same Nether Realms over and over again.
Lastly, I want to talk about something that is probably kind of boring for most of you, but it relates to the Mac, Linux, mobile, and console versions of the game. For some insane reason, GameMaker (the engine that Siralim Ultimate was created with) updated to a new version that pretty much changes the way the entire engine works. It’s ridiculous, really. It’s like learning a whole new game engine. Luckily, it will try to convert old games to the new version, but Siralim Ultimate is absolutely massive – far larger than the average game made with GameMaker, if not THE largest game – so this is going to be a ton of work to get everything running smoothly and to iron out all the bugs. Normally, I simply wouldn’t upgrade GameMaker to the newest version so I could just ignore this issue entirely, but until I do this, I can’t release the game on any platform other than Windows – it’s a long and boring story about why that’s the case, but that’s just how it is. So, I’m going to need to take some time – hopefully only a week or so – and get all of that working. At that point, I can finally release Mac and Linux ports for everyone. I’m sorry for the delay on these – I definitely would have had them out by now if it weren’t for the issue with GameMaker.
Anyway, I do have a few more surprises planned for beta, but I’m not 100% sure if I can make them happen yet so I won’t reveal what they are just yet. That should do it for this episode. I hope you’re as excited as I am about what’s on the horizon for Siralim Ultimate! I’ll see you guys next time.
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios podcast. Last month, I released patch 0.4.0 for Siralim Ultimate. This massive patch includes nearly 1700 achievements, a new type of currency that can be spent at a new shop offered by the gambling dwarves, a loot display filter, tons of new prophecies, quality of life improvements, and much more. The patch also includes a balance pass on all the traits, spells, relics, perks, and status effects in the game. In total, the patch notes were around 400 lines long.
The next patch will be a bit more focused. I’ve already implemented most of your suggestions, and all the most time-consuming things are done now. The codex, tutorial messages, and achievements are by far the most time-consuming things to add to the game, especially compared to how impactful they are in terms of content, so now I can finally focus on adding some real content to the game. That’s what I want to spend the rest of this episode talking about.
The highlight of our next patch includes Nether Bosses, and here’s how they’ll work. After you finish your main story quests – that is, after you’ve defeated the boss at depth 63 – every 5 realms you visit, you’ll be guaranteed to receive a realm quest that asks you to defeat a Nether Boss. To do so, you’ll need to find a portal in that realm that will take you to the boss’ chambers. Many of the Nether Bosses you’ll encounter are “remixed” versions of the story bosses you’ve already fought, while others will come from Siralim 2 and 3. You’ll definitely see some familiar faces in the mix. For example, Shackler was a fan-favorite boss from Siralim 2 – everyone agrees that it is the most well-designed boss in the series and provides countless hours of fun on his own, so I wanted to bring him back for one final round in Siralim Ultimate.
In total, there will be 35 different Nether Bosses for you to encounter. They won’t be chosen randomly – you’ll fight each one in a certain order until you’ve killed all 35, and then you’ll be asked to fight the first one all over again. So, because you’re only able to fight one every 5 realms, you’ll need to fight your way through 175 realms to see them all. But it doesn’t end there. Each time you re-fight a boss, its trait will grow more powerful, up to a maximum of 3 times. As an example – and I’m just making this up for the sake of demonstration – imagine you fight Kiichi for the first time. Her trait might be “Enemies always have Bleed”. The next time you fight her, her trait might read “Enemies always have Bleed. Enemies take damage from Bleed twice”. And then the third time you fight her, her trait might read “Enemies always have Bleed. Enemies take damage from Bleed twice. Enemies’ Bleed damage is based on their highest stat rather than their Current Health”. So, the point is that each time you re-fight a Nether Boss, a new challenge will be added to the mix to keep things interesting. So, as I mentioned earlier, it’ll take 175 realms to encounter each boss, but since there are three “tiers” for each boss, it’ll actually take 525 realms to truly see everything there is to see with this system.
As far as rewards go: after you defeat your first Nether Boss, you’ll receive a new decoration for your castle – actually, it’s an NPC. This NPC will serve as a new shop where you can buy legendary crafting materials for your artifacts. After you defeat a Nether Boss, a new material will be added to this shop. And each consecutive time you defeat the same boss, a new material will be added – so in other words, each Nether Boss has a total of 3 materials for you to unlock in this shop. Since there are 35 Nether Bosses, you can unlock up to 105 new legendary crafting materials.
But that’s not all! Remember when we unlocked “Creature Skins” as a Kickstarter stretch goal? I’m going to add those to the next patch as well. All the story bosses and Nether Bosses will have a unique skin, and after you defeat the Nether Boss enough times, you’ll be able to purchase their skin from the Nether Shop.
Of course, there will be tons of other skins for you to unlock outside of Nether Bosses. It’s simple: sometimes, while traveling through a realm, an enemy might have a skin equipped to it. When you encounter one of these enemies, an animation will play to show you that this isn’t just a normal creature. After you kill it, you’ll unlock that skin, and then you can equip your creatures with that skin whenever you want. The only restriction for skins is that they can only be equipped to a creature that belongs to that skin’s race. For example, if you unlock a skin for the Familiar race, you can’t equip it to one of your Fiends, but you can equip it to any creature that is a Familiar.
One more thing I wanted to mention about Nether Bosses: Nether Bosses will drop keys that can be used to challenge the gods at the Gate of the Gods. I’m not actually going to implement the Gate of the Gods in the next patch, but you’ll still be able to earn these keys for now. The higher your Realm Instability, the more keys you’ll earn – that way, players will have an incentive to crank up their Realm Instability. Otherwise, you’d probably turn it to zero when you knew you’d be fighting a Nether Boss. If you don’t know what the Gate of the Gods is, don’t worry about it for now – you’ll learn more about it soon enough.
Oh, and if you’ve been playing Siralim Ultimate for a long time, you’re probably past realm depth 63 by now. It would be really boring for you if you’re able to take on enemies at realm depth 1000 right now, but then your first nether boss starts at depth 70, so to alleviate that issue, you’ll simply start encountering Nether Bosses every 5 realms starting at your highest-ever depth. For example, if your highest depth is 1002 after the patch is released, you’ll encounter your first Nether Boss at depth 1005, then another at 1010, and so on.
I also have an idea in mind to make some content a little more difficult. It’s not some mind-blowing idea that will totally change the game, but I want to start experimenting with giving hard enemies like Nether Bosses more health. It’s not really fun if you can enter a battle and wipe out an enemy in one hit, thereby allowing you to ignore their trait entirely. So, I’m going to try to give Nether Bosses enough health that you’re probably going to need to endure a few hits from your enemies and actively try to counter their traits. I can extend this idea to all future content as well, such as the Rodian Creature Masters, World Bosses, god fights, and much more. I would also like to go back and re-visit the story bosses and adjust their health accordingly to make the difficulty curve a bit more smoothly. Now, I know this sounds like a simple change, but if I simply increase enemies’ health and leave it at that, certain traits and other effects will be extremely overpowered. Most players know that they could just use the Bleed debuff and pretty much ignore this health increase. So, I need to go through all traits, spells, perks, and other effects to make them work with a creature’s health *before* it’s adjusted with this new difficulty system. That’ll take some serious work, so this is a surprisingly big change, but I think it’ll make the game a lot better in the long run.
As you can imagine, all of the things I’ve mentioned in this episode will take a lot of time to implement – after all, I have over 200 traits to implement for Nether Bosses and their corresponding material rewards, and adding skins won’t be an easy task by any means. But, I’ve also been hard at work on this patch for the last 3 weeks… So, right now, I’m hoping to have this patch released by late October – hopefully in another 2 weeks. But of course, it’s always hard to estimate things like this, so don’t take that as a definite release window. Much like with the last major patch, I’ll probably have this one up on the test branch before it’s fully released.
That’s all for this episode. See you next time!
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios podcast! I know it’s been a while since the last episode, but I’m going to start churning these out a lot more frequently from now on now that the dust has settled with the Siralim Ultimate alpha test. Speaking of which, that’s the topic of today’s episode, so let’s get started.
We’re about one month into alpha testing and so far, everything is going very smoothly. The game is now in an extremely stable state, and all known crashes and major bugs are fixed. There are still some minor issues that I have fixed for the upcoming patch, but the game is fully playable and there are no known issues that will prevent you from enjoying the game. For that reason, I’ve been working hard on adding new content and features to the game, as well as implementing suggestions from our players.
In the last couple weeks, we’ve implemented some major new features to the game, including:
– The arena, which serves as an alternative game mode that allows players to unlock exclusive creatures and items
– Tutorial popups to explain game features as soon as they’re unlocked
– The Codex, which serves as an in-game guide to explain core game mechanics. It also includes a reference list for traits, spells, realm properties, and more
– Wardrobe costumes that can be found or purchased. These change the way your character looks
– Siralopoly, a mini-game that can be played to earn items
– Tons of quality of life improvements and minor balance adjustments
In particular, the Codex and tutorials took up a lot of time to implement, as did all the bug and crash fixes. Moving forward, I can dedicate more time to adding features to the game. The next patch is going to be the largest one so far. Let’s talk about a few of the things you can expect to see in patch 0.4.0. Before I begin, please keep in mind that what I’m going to reveal in this episode isn’t final – some of these things might be adjusted or removed entirely before the patch is released. My goal is simply to give you some idea about what I’m working on right now.
The biggest addition to the game will be the achievements system. There will be at least a couple thousand achievements added to the game in the next patch, and more will be added as I add more relevant content to the game. All achievements increase the amount of Piety you’ll receive from all sources. Most of these achievements should be rewarded retroactively, but some won’t be – that’s an inevitable part of alpha testing. However, I am 100% sure that there won’t be any achievements that you’ll permanently miss out on, regardless of how much progress you’ve made during alpha testing.
One of the biggest concerns I’ve heard from players is how realm properties work. Everyone has a different opinion on them, but I want to talk about my plans for them in the future. First, I think realm properties are great. I’m not going to remove them – they’re here to stay. But, I recognize that Siralim can sometimes have a sort of “zen effect” on players where it’s fun to just grind through 50 realms while you zone out and listen to music, or watch a show on Netflix or whatever, and realm properties sometimes keep you on your toes “just enough” so that you can’t fully zone out and get into the flow of the game. So, here’s my plan. I’m going to change Realm Instability a bit. At 0 Realm Instability, realms won’t have any properties at all. Of course, that also means they won’t give you any item bonuses. Each point of Realm Instability now adds a normal property and a hidden property to the realm. So, in other words, you can now remove or minimize the number of realm properties there are. I really like this change because it also makes each point of Realm Instability much more impactful – right now, there’s not a very noticeable difference between each one, and this will definitely solve that problem. In other words, this solves problems on both ends of the spectrum. There are some smaller changes coming to realm properties as well – for example, I’m removing the “Player Can’t Gain Gems” property entirely.
I’m also going to make a big change to the way Item Bonuses work for realm properties. Currently, your Item Bonus simply increases your chance to find items. For example, if you have a 1% chance to find a certain item, and you have a 300% Item Bonus, you’d then have a 4% chance to find that item instead. In the next patch, however, I’m going to make this Item Bonus also multiply the quantity of loot you’ll receive. As an example, a normal treasure chest contains 3 “units” of loot – so in other words, the game attempts to roll for each item 3 times. If your Item Bonus is 300%, treasure chests would contain 12 units of loot instead. However, I’m also going to reduce the amount of item bonuses you receive from each property since this change would make it far too easy to obtain items, so it’s unlikely you’ll actually see an Item Bonus of 300% or higher in the next patch. Anyway, the goal of this change is to make realm properties more appealing – I feel like the biggest issue with the way they work right now isn’t that they make the game more difficult, but that the reward isn’t as noticeable as it could be.
Lastly, I’m working on a full balance pass of the game’s traits, spells, perks, and relics. Almost everything will be buffed rather than nerfed, and in particular, I want to make relics feel a bit more useful for spell-heavy teams – right now they focus too much on attacking. I want to point out one specific trait that will be completely revamped in the next patch to give you all a heads-up: Anomaly. Anomaly is a disaster of a trait. It never really cooperated with the game’s battle engine, and it has always been riddled with bugs and inconsistencies. Aside from that, it’s insanely overpowered and there’s not much that I can do about it in terms of simply adjusting a number and hoping for the best – the trait needs to be overhauled with a totally different effect. Now, I’m sure a few other traits will be revamped as well, but I know that a lot of players use Anomaly so I figured I’d mention that so you can adjust your current team accordingly to prepare for this patch. Also, Animators are getting some serious love – I might have gone overboard with the buffs I’m giving to this specialization, but hey. Keep in mind that this balance pass is just a minor one – I’ll do several of these balance passes until the game is fully released, so if you see something that was nerfed too hard, buffed too hard, or ignored entirely, feel free to submit a suggestion on our forums or Discord and I’ll happily take a look.
Outside of all of that, I’ve been working on implementing player suggestions. There are a lot of them, and not all of them will be accepted, but you should know that I’m working on them every day. There will also be tons of new creature graphics, sound effects, decorations to collect, and much more. There will be several new prophecies, too.
There are countless other new features and adjustments coming in the next patch, but that’s all I can think of for now. As you might imagine, the scope of this patch is far larger than any patch I’ve released for Siralim Ultimate so far. For that reason, you shouldn’t expect to see it released until late next week at the absolute earliest – but the week of the 20th is far more likely. I know that’s kind of far off, but it’ll be worth the wait. I’ll probably release another podcast episode sometime next week to give everyone an update on my progress so you’ll have a better idea about when to expect this patch.
That’s all I have for this episode! Thanks for listening, and I’ll see you next time.
The Siralim Ultimate alpha test is finally upon us! You should have received your key via e-mail by now. Be sure to check your spam folders. If you still haven’t received one, let me know. If you ordered multiple keys, you’ll receive a separate e-mail for each one.
If you come across any bugs or want to make a suggestion, please post on our official forums (https://forums.thylacinestudios.com/) or our Steam forums (https://steamcommunity.com/app/1289810/discussions/).
Curious as to what you can expect during alpha? Check out our roadmap: https://forums.thylacinestudios.com/t/siralim-ultimate-alpha-development-roadmap/5843
A few things to note about the alpha version:
- The UI is in good shape but there’s still room for improvements. One major thing I have in mind is that shops and other UIs that require the player to spend currency need to show how much you have – some still don’t.
- Not all creature sprites are revamped yet and we’re using Siralim 3 sprites as placeholders. Some of the revamps are still just placeholders as well – any race that doesn’t have unique poses for each creature is not final.
- NPC sprites and specialization character sprites are very much a work in progress.
- Some creatures don’t have dialog yet when you summon them.
- Steam Achievements aren’t implemented, but the game is tracking your progress and you’ll be awarded these achievements retroactively once they’re implemented. Not all of them will be retroactive, but the important ones are. In other words, you won’t permanently miss out on any achievements by participating in alpha testing.
- Ignore all references to achievements, titles, accolades, and things like that. They’re all going to be combined into one system and will work differently than in previous games.
- Tutorials and game guides aren’t implemented yet but they are a priority. For now, if you have questions, feel free to ask around on Discord or our forums!
- When you’re decorating your castle, don’t stack decorations on top of each other for now. It’ll cause problems.
- Mac and Linux versions of the alpha version will be available in the coming weeks.
- Just because you participate in alpha testing on Steam doesn’t mean you need to choose that platform for your digital copy key(s). You can test the game on Steam and then choose a totally different platform when the game is released if you want.
- Streaming and content creation is allowed and encouraged.
- Your save files will not be wiped out after alpha finishes.
- Expect multiple patches per day for the first few days of alpha testing. After that, we’ll slow down the rate of patching as I work on adding more content and major features to the game.
- As for backer rewards, we’ll send out a survey toward the end of beta testing to collect your information. For now, enjoy the alpha test!
I hope you’ll enjoy the game! Thank you so much for your continued support. I can’t wait to hear what you think about Siralim Ultimate!
– Zack Bertok
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios Podcast. In this episode, I want to talk about the roadmap for Siralim Ultimate and how all the different release stages will work. I also want to give you a glimpse of what to expect with the alpha version of the game.
As you probably know by now, we’ll release the game to our alpha backers on August 10. By the way, it’s still not too late to buy alpha access to the game, so if you’re interested, check out the PayPal shop on our website at thylacinestudios.com. Alpha will take place on Steam only, and will start out only available on Windows for the first few weeks. Later on, after the game is more stable, I’ll release it for Mac and Linux as well.
I can’t give you a definite time for when you’ll receive your key – I need to send them to everyone manually, so that makes it difficult to predict when you’ll get to play. I’ll start sending the keys out around 1pm EST on August 10, and I’m hoping it won’t take longer than a couple hours to send them out to everyone. If you purchased alpha access via our PayPal shop, you’ll receive the key at the same e-mail address you used to make your purchase. If you’re a Kickstarter backer, you’ll receive your key through their messaging system.
As for what you should expect in alpha… a lot of bugs and crashes, of course, but I’ll be aggressively patching the game during the first week or so to make sure you don’t hit some horrible roadblock that prevents you from playing. The full focus, especially during the first couple weeks, will be on bug and crash fixes – I won’t be adding any new content or making balance adjustments during this time. In fact, I probably won’t add any content at all during alpha. I don’t know how long alpha will last because it all depends on how smoothly things go and how many issues come up during this time.
Content-wise, alpha includes all the main story quests, along with a healthy amount of end-game content including prophecies, god relics, projects, Nether Stones, and more. All 15 of the original specializations are fully implemented as well. You’re not going to run out of content during the alpha. In fact, there’s already more content than there was in Siralim 3. Don’t forget about fusion, too – I can guarantee that you’ll spend hours upon hours looking at all the different combinations of creatures you can make. One thing the alpha probably won’t include – at least not at the start – is a tutorial system. In Siralim 3, there were a bunch of popups that would explain game mechanics to you, and those aren’t implemented yet in Siralim Ultimate. There isn’t a libary system yet either. It’s not ideal, but I don’t think any of the game’s mechanics are that incredibly complex that you won’t be able to figure anything out, so I’m not really worried about that.
Once the game is stable, we’ll move toward the beta phase. Your alpha keys will still work during beta, and I’ll send out keys to all the beta backers during this time as well. During beta, I’ll focus on quality of life improvements, balance adjustments, and some content. The goal of beta is to make the game feel good to play. This phase will be all about polish. I might add a few new pieces of content as well, such as new specializations.
A few weeks before beta ends, I’ll send out surveys to backers who purchased the right to work with us to design custom content, like creatures, costumes, spells, and things like that. You’ll have plenty of time – at least a few weeks – to submit your answers, and by this point you’ll have been able to play the game for at least a couple months so you should have a good idea about what you want me to add to the game by then. Most content will have a deadline for your submissions, but some of the larger-scale pieces of content such as specializations and custom realms will be more flexible since that will require a lot more back-and-forth communication with me.
Next, we’ll enter Early Access – again, only on Steam. During this time, we’ll have a lot of new players trying out the game, many of whom have never played a Siralim game before, so it’ll be interesting to get a fresh perspective on the gameplay. I’ll continue adding new content during this time. My hope is that all the promised backer content and stretch goals will be implemented during Early Access aside from a few features. I know the roguelike mode won’t happen during Early Access – that’ll come after launch. I’m pretty sure everything else will be added in Early Access, though.
After the game leaves Early Access, I’ll start working on the roguelike mode, the mobile ports, and finally I’ll work on the console ports. I have absolutely no idea when any of those things will be finished – it’s impossible to even guess a quarter in 2021 right now, but I’ll keep you updated. At no point during development do I plan to wipe your save files. There might be a bug or crash or something that wipes them out, but that’s the only way you’ll lose your progress.
I’m really excited for you all to finally test out the game. I’ve been playing through the story quests to make sure there aren’t any massive bugs or crashes, and I’m so happy with how the game feels already. During these final few weeks prior to our alpha launch, I probably won’t release any more podcast episodes so that I can dedicate all my time toward the release. After the alpha is stabilized though, you’ll definitely hear from me again. In the meantime, keep an eye on our Twitter, Facebook, subreddit, Discord, website, or forums for updates. That’s it for this episode, and I’ll see you guys next time!
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios Podcast. In this episode, I want to talk about some of the online features in Siralim Ultimate and how I’ve decided to change the way they work based on player feedback.
When I started working on Siralim Ultimate, I envisioned a game that would be ever-changing. The idea was for there to be so many moving parts in the game that you could play it non-stop and never run out of things to do because there would always be some new event to keep you occupied. I still like that idea and plan to move forward with it, but some of the features that I planned to have online components have turned out to not be so great. I feel like I was forcing online functionality into features that didn’t really need them. So, I want to talk about what those features are and how I plan to change them in Siralim Ultimate.
First, you might remember that I revealed “World Bosses” a couple months ago. These were supposed to be giant bosses that would spawn on a timer. The timer would be contained on a server, so every single person playing the game would have their game invaded by the same World Boss at the same time. Then, players would all find the World Boss and defeat it which would help to fend off this “invasion”. After the World Boss was defeated by enough players, everyone who participated would receive a reward.
In the end, I don’t think the online functionality for World Bosses really needs to exist. I don’t want players to be at the mercy of the game deciding when you can fight a boss. And, imagine if you happen to be asleep or at work or school while a certain World Boss spawns, and by the time you’re able to play the game, it’s gone. That would feel pretty bad. So, I’ve decided to remove all online components from World Bosses.
I haven’t designed the specifics about how you’ll encounter them yet, but World Bosses will still be huge creatures that you’ll fight that have unique mechanics associated with them. These bosses take up all 6 creature slots for the enemy, and each slot contains a different body part. That might sound kind of weird, so I’ll give you an example. Hydranox is one of the World Bosses you’ll encounter in Siralim Ultimate. It’s a giant hydra that is so large that it takes up the entire battlefield, so it doesn’t have room for allies or anything like that. It’ll start with 5 heads, one for each slot, plus a body which consumes the remaining slot. The body is immune to damage and buffs the heads, and increases their stats and provides support for it. When you kill a head, two more spawn in its place which means they can now attack, cast spells, and employ all other effects two times. When you kill those two heads, three new ones will spawn. And when you finally kill those three heads, no more will spawn. Since there are 5 head slots and each one can have up to 3 heads, you might be fighting 15 heads at once if you carelessly mow them all down at once with area-of-effect spells. So, the optimal strategy for fighting this boss is to tackle one “head slot” at a time.
I feel like I rambled on a bit too much there, so if you’re still confused, don’t worry about it – the mechanics of how each fight works will be better-explained in-game. Anyway, some of the rewards you’ll earn from World Bosses include exclusive spell gem recipes (5 will be available from each boss), exclusive trait materials for your artifacts, cosmetics, and much more.
So, that’s how I’m thinking World Bosses will work now. No more online functionality – and I think this feature will be better off for it.
Next, I want to talk about Tavern Brawls. A while back, I asked everyone to fill out a survey regarding Tavern Brawls. The survey was very short and simply asked players how much they enjoy Tavern Brawls as they are in Siralim 3. Over 700 people replied to the survey, and your feedback is pretty clear: most people hate them. And those of you who don’t outright hate them simply don’t care about them one way or another. In total, less than 10% of players said they like this feature. Unfortunately, Tavern Brawls are also one of the most obnoxious things for me to handle from a coding perspective, and there are so many little bugs associated with them even in Siralim 3 that I feel like it’s all held together with bandaids and chewing gum at this point. So, it’s impossible for me to justify spending so much time on a feature that the majority of players dislike. I have a really cool idea in mind that will replace Tavern Brawls – it won’t feature PvP elements at all, but I think you’ll like it. It’s still a little too early to announce the specifics about this yet, but I’m extremely confident that most of you will enjoy what I have in mind. I recognize that some of you really enjoyed Tavern Brawls, and I’m sorry that this feature won’t make its way to Siralim Ultimate. It was a nice experiment, but it just proved that any form of PvP in the Siralim games is a bad idea. I won’t even get into all the flaws with Tavern Brawls right now because that’s not the point of this episode, but it’s something I’ll take a deep dive into at some point because I think it’s a pretty interesting topic to explore from a game design perspective.
Lastly, let’s talk about Siralim Ultimate’s Event Calendar. For those of you who don’t know (or simply forgot), there will be an in-game calendar that is tied to real-world time. It lists all the events that will happen in the game. Siralim 3 had a lot of events that rewarded exclusive creatures, materials, cosmetics, and more. These events were very well-received, but I didn’t like the fact that there was no way for players to see when an event would happen. A lot of people would check Facebook or Twitter several days after an event ended only to find out that they missed out on a wardrobe costume, and that’s a big problem to me. So, in Siralim Ultimate, there will be a calendar that will tell you when an event is coming up. I’m even planning to add optional push notifications to the mobile version of the game so that you can opt-in to reminders about events on your phone.
Anyway, so far, I’ve repeated what you already know about the calendar. The big change I’m planning for this, however, is that I don’t want to tie any exclusive creatures to events anymore. In Siralim 3, there were 4 major holiday events that offered 5 or 6 exclusive creatures. It was fun, but again, it felt so bad to miss out on those creatures. So, for all events in Siralim Ultimate (including the holiday ones like Halloween), rewards will mostly be cosmetic in nature: creature skins, decorations, things like that. There also might be a few exclusive trait materials for you to acquire because I don’t think that’s as punishing as missing out on a creature, but I’m hesitant to even do that. I think time-based rewards should all be cosmetic. And, I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I also have an idea in mind to allow players to manipulate the calendar in case they missed out on an event – but I’m still not ready to announce specifics on that.
So, that’s pretty much all I have to say about online functionality in Siralim Ultimate. I think these changes will make for a much better experience for everyone. Whether you agree or disagree, I want to hear your thoughts about it. The game isn’t even in alpha testing yet, so there’s obviously plenty of time to iterate on things like this to make it as player-friendly as possible. Thanks for listening (or reading!), and I’ll see you guys next time.
Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios Podcast. In this episode, I’m going to reveal a new feature in Siralim Ultimate called the Reliquary, and I’ll also reveal how Prophecies work in this game compared to the older ones.
First, let’s start with Prophecies. For those of you who are new to the Siralim series, Prophecies are infinite, repeatable quests that players can continue to partake in after you clear the game’s main storyline.
Prophecies are a little different in Siralim Ultimate, however. After you finish all the story quests, you’ll receive your first Rune of Prophecies. You can think of this rune as a large tablet that consists of a 5×5 grid of icons – so there are 25 icons in total. In fact, you can think of it as a sort of Bingo card. Each icon denotes a different quest or task for players to complete. One task might be for you to kill 500 Death creatures, while another task might be a little more complex – maybe you’ll need to win a few arena matches. Some tasks are more difficult than others.
When you complete a task, the icon on your Rune of Prophecies will be marked off to show you finished it. When you complete at least one row of tasks, you can turn in this rune for rewards. However, you can continue to complete additional tasks on the Rune of Prophecies before you turn it in. The more rows of tasks you complete before you turn it in, the greater your rewards. So, in other words, this gives players an interesting choice: you can either rush through only the tasks you want to do and then turn in the Rune of Prophecies, or you can complete additional ones to multiply your rewards. The icons on the Rune of Prophecies are placed at random, so some task sets might be more appealing to you than others. Oh, and just to clarify, when I say a “row of tasks”, that row can be horizontal, vertical, or diagonal.
The idea behind this new system is to give players total control over how they interact with other end-game content. Many players disliked the Prophecy system in Siralim 3 that required you to complete a Tavern Brawl, so my hope is that this new Prophecies system will allow players to skip tasks they don’t want to partake in. On that note, there isn’t actually a Prophecy that requires you to complete a Tavern Brawl in Siralim Ultimate.
Next, I’m going to talk about the Reliquary which is how players will enhance their Relics of the Gods. But, the way relics work has changed so much since I first revealed them several months ago that I’m just going to kind of re-reveal them all over again. So, let’s get started.
There will be a relic for each god in the game. Each relic consists of 10 perks that you can unlock as you level up that relic. In order for a creature to make use of these perks, you must attune the relic to that creature. In order to level up a relic, you must spend a new type of currency on it called Piety, which is rewarded from completing Prophecies. As your relic’s level increases, you’ll unlock new relic perks. In addition, that relic will grant 1% of a certain stat to the creature that has that relic attuned.
For example, one relic is called Arbiter, Holy Blade of Surathli. Obviously, this is Surathli’s relic. It’ll start at level 1 with a basic perk that gives the attuned creature the Shell buff at the start of battle. At level 1, it will also increase the attuned creature’s Maximum Health by 1%. After you level up this relic to 10, you’ll unlock an additional perk that grants the bearer 100% additional healing from all sources. In addition, it will increase the attuned creature’s Maximum Health by 10% – so in other words, each relic level grants a 1% increase to a certain stat. You can continue to level up a relic indefinitely to gain more stats, but you’ll stop unlocking new perks for that relic at level 100.
Now that you know how relics work, let’s talk about the Reliquary. The Reliquary is a utility decoration that can be placed in your castle. This decoration will be used to manipulate your relics. Everything you do at the Reliquary costs Piety – again, that comes from completing Prophecies. You can buy new relics at the Reliquary, level up your relics, and attune them to your creatures. On a side note, multiple creatures can have the same relic attuned at the same time.
You can also spend Piety on upgrades for the Reliquary itself. The most obvious upgrade you’ll probably be interested in is called Synergies, which allows your relic to grant some of its stat bonuses to all of your creatures – not just the one that has it equipped. Some other upgrades include additional damage dealt by your relics, increased healing, and things like that. Why would you want to upgrade your relics’ damage, you ask? Because as your relics level up, they’ll start to take on lives of their own and fight for you in battle. Going back to the example of Surathli’s “Arbiter” relic, after it reaches level 100, it’ll cast Holy Explosion at the end of the attuned creature’s turn.
Needless to say, relics will allow your team to grow quite powerful, and these are the primary way for players to enjoy infinite progression. I hope you all like what you heard here today. That’s it for this episode, and I’ll see you guys next time!
Hey guys, this is Zack from Thylacine Studios. In today’s episode, I want to reveal some more details about one of our Kickstarter goals: Nether Stones. Nether Stones are a brand new type of item coming to Siralim Ultimate.
Before I get started, for those of you are new to the series, I’ll start with a quick explanation about how Artifacts work since they’re closely related to Nether Stones. In short, an Artifact is an item that can be equipped to a creature in order to make that creature more powerful. Artifacts can increase a creature’s stats, as well as give them all kinds of other interesting bonuses. For example, Artifacts can increase the number of Spell Gems that a creature can equip, or give that creature a chance to afflict an enemy with a debuff when it deals damage. Some more interesting Artifact effects include the ability for a creature to automatically cast spells at certain times during battle, or even to gain powerful traits, which are passive effects that change the way you’ll approach battles.
In previous Siralim games, there were two ways to acquire Artifacts: you could either find them in treasure chests and other sources of loot, or you could craft and upgrade them. Unfortunately, since there are so many possible properties that an Artifact can have, finding a good Artifact in treasure chests was practically impossible. In other words, the only realistic way to find a decent Artifact was to craft one. This meant that players ended up with a bunch of useless Artifacts in their inventories that they’d never use. This created a lot of issues for players after they amassed hundreds of these useless Artifacts, and some players even hoarded thousands of Artifacts which caused some performance issues to occur with the game.
In Siralim Ultimate, you’ll only craft your Artifacts and you can no longer find them from loot sources. This is great news because it solves the problems I mentioned earlier. However, this also takes away a huge element of randomly generated loot, and honestly, treasure chests just weren’t that exciting to open anymore. Nether Stones solve this problem, and I’m going to spend the rest of this episode talking about how they work.
Nether Stones are extremely rare items. You’ll probably find one every 10 to 20 realms. They’re so rare that I’ve added a pity timer to them so that each time you open a treasure chest or find loot in some other way, your chance to find a Nether Stone will increase slightly until you finally find one. That way, you won’t go through a horrible dry period where you don’t find any for an extremely long time.
Nether Stones can have all the same properties as an Artifact: they can boost a creature’s stats, add various procs and effects to their attacks and spells, grant them new traits, and even give them the ability to cast spells automatically at certain times. Each property has a certain rarity, so you’ll most commonly find simple Nether Stones that boost your creatures’ stats, while rarer Nether Stones will grant traits and more complex effects. You can socket a maximum of one Nether Stone into each of your Artifacts. My hope is that the extremely rare Nether Stones will be so powerful that you might re-think your entire party composition and build your team around one of these items.
If you’re familiar with games like Diablo, Path of Exile, and Grim Dawn, Nether Stones are meant to act like the loot found in those games. Even though they’re extremely rare, knowing that you have a chance to find one each time you open a treasure chest is sure to make your dungeon crawling experience even more fun than before.
In order to help players understand how rare their Nether Stones are, the user interface will display a numerical value called “Rarity”. The higher the number, the rarer that Nether Stone is. So, if you find a Nether Stone with 10 Rarity, it probably only has one property and that property is probably something basic like a boost to Attack. If you find a Nether Stone with, say, 500 Rarity, that probably means the Nether Stone grants a creature a new trait (or even two, or three!) or gives them access to a new spell.
I recognize that some people might dislike the completely random nature of Nether Stones – after all, there’s no way to add, remove, or modify a Nether Stone’s properties and there never will be – but the fact is that a huge chunk of our playerbase (myself included) enjoys a never-ending loot hunt, and Nether Stones should be exactly what we’re looking for. Nether Stones are by no means required to progress in the game – think of them as a nice bonus to make your team more powerful.
Earlier, I mentioned that I didn’t like how Artifacts cluttered players’ inventories in previous Siralim games – so what makes Nether Stones different in that regard? Well, your Nether Stones will all have an “Age” component associated with them. Obviously, the Nether Stones you’ve recently found have a “younger” age than those you’ve had in your inventory for a long time. After you have too many Nether Stones in your inventory, you’ll receive a warning that your oldest Nether Stones will disappear if you acquire any more. This will give you the opportunity to hold on to any Nether Stones you don’t want to be deleted, while also automating the process of decluttering your inventory. You can also lock Nether Stones to prevent them from ever disappearing. The goal of this Age system is simply to prevent players from needing to manage their inventories too much.
I’ve been so excited about Nether Stones that I’ve managed to find some extra time in my schedule this last week to work on implementing them already. In fact, I’m pretty confident that I’ll have them ready for alpha access, so you’ll be able to start hunting for them as soon as you get your hands on Siralim Ultimate in late July!
I can’t tell you how excited I am about Nether Stones. They add an insane amount of extra excitement to the game, and I think even the most hardcore of players will continue to enjoy this system for a long time to come. I hope you enjoyed this episode and are as excited as I am about Nether Stones. That’s all I have for today – see you guys next time!
I’m excited to announce the start of the Thylacine Studios Podcast! I’ll use this podcast as a platform to introduce information about our games, as well as dive into some general game development topics.
Hey everyone, this is Zack from Thylacine Studios, and today I am pleased to announce the start of the Thylacine Studios Podcast.
I’m going to use this podcast for a variety of purposes. Primarily, I’m going to use it to reveal and discuss the games I’m working on – right now, of course, the focus will all be on Siralim Ultimate. I’m also hoping to sprinkle in a few episodes from time to time about general game development. Overall, this podcast will replace the traditional blog posts I’ve been writing on the Thylacine Studios website for the last several years.
I understand that some people might not want to rely on audio to obtain this news and information. For that reason, I will also provide a full transcript with each episode. You can find the transcript on our blog (as you’ve always been able to) at www.thylacinestudios.com.
As far as the schedule of the podcast goes, I don’t really have a specific timeline in mind. One week, I might release several episodes, but then the next week there might be some downtime where I won’t release anything at all. I’ll do my best to announce extended breaks ahead of time, though. Generally speaking, however, I’d love to release at least one new episode per week.
Outside of that, I don’t have much else to discuss in this episode as it is meant to serve as an introductory episode. However, right after this, I’m going to post a full-length episode so that we can get started on this podcast immediately.
In closing, please let me know if you have any suggestions about how I can improve this podcast – anything from the audio to the content itself. I want to use this podcast to serve as my primary form of communication with our community moving forward, so I’m keen to hear your feedback on it to improve it over time. Thanks for listening!