Happy New Year! 2020 Retrospective



Hey everyone, welcome back to the Thylacine Studios Podcast. I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday! In this episode, we’ll take a look at everything that happened in 2020 (as far as our games are concerned), and take a glimpse at what’s in store for Siralim Ultimate in the year to come.

First off, we released Trial of the Gods, a collectible card game based on the Siralim series. This is the first game we’ve ever released where I wasn’t the programmer, and I think Jay did an awesome job on it. This game actually has a pretty interesting story behind it. I had always wanted to make a CCG based on Siralim, and I always figured I’d use the rules from Final Fantasy 8’s “Triple Triad” mini-game as the foundation for it. Well, one day, I randomly stumbled upon Jay’s page on itch.io where he was creating a game just like that. It was in the prototype phase but showed a lot of promise, so I contacted him to see if he’d be interested in partnering up, and as luck would have it, he was already a Siralim player and knew a lot about the game. That made the transition toward a Siralim-focused game much easier. Since Trial of the Gods was released, Jay has released several content updates for it as well, including an enchanting system to give it a bit more “infinite Siralim” flair, as well as a challenge mode that adds a whole new way to play the game. I think Jay did a fantastic job on the game, and I hope you all like it as well.

Later on, we launched our first-ever Kickstarter campaign for a little game called Siralim Ultimate. Needless to say, it went far better than expected. I honestly wasn’t sure if we’d be able to hit the goal of $10,000, but yeah, we managed to do that in about an hour. A month later, we had raised over $90,000 which is just insane. After the Kickstarter ended, I opened a PayPal shop on our website so people could continue backing and supporting the game, as well as purchasing the right to add their own ideas to the game. The PayPal shop has been ridiculously successful as well. So, thank you all so much for your support – I can’t tell you how humbling it is to know that there are so many people out there who enjoy the Siralim series – it has grown far larger than I ever expected, and I can’t wait to make it even better with your help.

Shortly after the Kickstarter ended, we released Siralim Ultimate to alpha testers on Steam. The alpha phase went very well. Most of the major bugs and crashes were mopped up in only a few days, and then I was able to put full focus on adding new content to the game. In fact, several Kickstarter stretch goals were already added to the alpha version of the game, most notably Nether Stones and Creature Skins, as well as standard content such as the arena, achievements, Nether Bosses, and more.

A few months later, we released Siralim Ultimate to beta testers. Beta has been amazing so far. We’ve delivered on even more Kickstarter stretch goals in beta already, including Rodian Creature Masters, five new specializations, and much more. We also released the Gate of the Gods which serves as a massive end-game progression system. I’ve also been hard at work to implement your feedback and suggestions. Thanks to everyone who has submitted bug reports and suggestions – Siralim Ultimate is a much better game with your help.

Since I just released a massive content patch for beta testers, a lot of you are probably wondering what I’m working on now. My most immediate concern is to get the Mac and Linux ports up and running. Alongside that, I’m working on getting some surveys ready to send out to our backers so you can finally submit your ideas for the game. I’ll have more details about these surveys in a future post. I’m also working on a new patch for the game. It won’t be anywhere near as large as the last several ones, but it’ll add some nice things to the game anyway. For example, I’m going to add in-game options that allow you to disable different types of floating battle text. You’ll be able to specifically hide text related to creatures taking damage, or being healed, or being afflicted with a debuff – pretty much any category you can think of can be disabled. For each of these text categories, you’ll be able to specify whether you want the text to appear for only your creatures, only your enemies, neither, or both. Regardless of how you configure these settings, all of this text will still appear in your battle history so you can go back and see what happened if you’re confused about something. This should speed up battles considerably, especially for players who rely on chaining a lot of effects together at once. I’m also working on a balance pass for master traits, god fight traits, and avatar traits. Lastly, I have a few smaller quality of life improvements in mind. I’m not sure when this patch will be ready but it shouldn’t take too long at all.

After beta ends, we’ll launch into Early Access on Steam. At that time, anyone will be able to purchase the game, even if they didn’t back the game on Kickstarter or through our PayPal shop. I still don’t have an exact date nailed down for Early Access yet, but it will most likely be in late February or early March. I don’t have an ETA for mobile and console releases at this time, but the plan is still to have those ready for 2021.

I know this year has been really bad for literally everyone – there were no winners in 2020, that’s for sure – and I hope this next year turns out better for all of us. Thank you all for sticking with the Siralim series and for putting so much trust in Thylacine Studios to deliver a great gaming experience. I can’t wait to release even more content for Siralim Ultimate and to get a finished game into your hands as soon as possible. I hope you all have a safe and happy new year!