I’m here these next two weeks to show you a little bit about the development of Exodus: Proxima Centauri. We will be doing a short series leading up to the launch of Exodus to give you a peek into the kind of work we do together during development to bring you the polished game we are all so proud of.
The process of developing Exodus: Proxima Centauri for the digital format began with coding the game to play out with just text. Conlan and Gordon made sure the game was functioning at the most basic level, and would even test with the physical game in front of them as the visual component, while using the cues from the digital, text-based version to dictate the game flow.
Soon after this came the very first Developer Build. Here is a screen shot from the very first graphical version of the game: v0.0.02:
As you might suspect, this was a very hard build to actually play. It almost required the physical game in front of you, following the game flow, to understand. As this doesn’t work well for hard testing, we quickly moved on.
Next came the map-based Developer version of Exodus. This improved upon the above build with very rough visual aids designed so we could play through a complete game on the computer. This version came with very fast visual effects, we called ‘Stub ins,’ and let us explore the best ways to communicate information as well as debug the code. This version did the heavy lifting in developmental play testing while we made sure the game would play through from start to finish.
With the skeleton afforded by our Developer version of Exodus, we began updating with new art and UI pieces, one game flow at a time. The evolution of these decisions is what we’ll be discussing during our Exodus Developer Insights series. Here’s a picture of the intermediate upgrades to the game. You can see some of the developer tools still there, while some of the more finalized additions to the game appear as well.
Finally, we end up with the polished product you see in Exodus: Proxima Centauri. So how exactly do we make the decisions moving from this Developer version to the final version of the game? Well, stay tuned for our Developer’s Insights articles for more details.