Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Update: EVERYONE will be able to play Cyka

Cutting straight to the chase, we're making two versions of Cyka so that anyone on any preferred platform can enjoy the game.  Excuse me.  [Writer does a little dance.]

One game, two experiences

One version of Cyka will allow gamers on PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android to play together online cross-platform, and now, we've already began creating a version of Cyka that will be exclusive to Steam called Cyka: Steamed Edition.

We've said earlier today that we're working on two different playable demos for Cyka.  Well, this is why we're doing such--to provide a playable example of each version of Cyka, to show our supporters a good taste of what they'll be supporting soon.  And really, this came to us just as a great solution.

Cyka: Steamed Edition

As we've mentioned beforeCyka: Steamed Edition will be a special version of the game built just for Steam to best take advantage of Steam's features.  One problem we were having in making Cyka available for Steam was that it wouldn't be able to play cross-platform with other non-Steam versions of the game, namely the mobile versions, and so we wanted to make a special version for Cyka that would justify being available only just for Steam.

But what's new about the development of this Steam version of the game is that now it will be a very different experience from the original non-Steam version.  While the two versions of the game will play the exact same way in terms of gameplay, the major noticeable difference about Cyka: Steamed Edition will be that it is created using the Unreal Development Kit, and so it will have visuals in a league of its own compared to the standard Cyka game for non-Steam versions built with the Unity Engine (which will still be one beautiful game).  The environments will be noticeably more destructible and interactive as well.  It will feel like its own game because basically it is--it's a version of Cyka built uniquely with UDK from the ground up.

In addition to the visual upgrade, Cyka: Steamed Edition will be able to utilize Steam's matchmaking service, Steam Achievements, Steam Leaderboards, Steam Cloud save service, co-op multiplayer and in-game chat (though some of these features will be on the non-Steam versions, too).  As the Steam version of Cyka will only be able to use Steam's platform Steamworks, the game will cost lower than the non-Steam desktop version of Cyka, it will include the Cloud Quest mode, and there will be free exclusive content for this version as well.

Unity-developed Cyka
Pick your store soon...
UDK-developed Cyka soon including Steam!


So, let's recap just a bit at what we're looking at here:
  • Cyka (standard desktop version) (PC or Mac standalone; Linux supported via web browser version)
  • Cyka (standard mobile version) (iOS or Android)
  • Cyka: Cloud Quest Edition (PC or Mac standalone; Linux supported via web browser version)
  • Cyka: Cloud Quest Edition (iOS or Android)
  • Cyka: Steamed Edition (exclusive Steam edition for PC and Mac)
Phew!  And then you can also include the free browser-based game, Cyka Free (a scaled-down single-player single-mode version of Cyka with four playable maps and is totally free to play), but that's merely to a scaled version to whet gamers' appetite for the one of the richer multiplayer version of Cyka.

But how?!

But you might be wondering, "How are you now able to do this now?  Weren't you having problems with using the Unity game engine before?"

Well, we're able to do this now because after many hours of searching, we finally found a solution to the problem we were facing before in dealing with Unity's terrain system (two simple little scripts that solved our problem were sitting in the back of a Unity forum, waiting).  But now with Unity back as an option, while we sure didn't want to abandon using Unity (in order to keep Cyka truly cross-platform), we also didn't want to abandon this new version of Cyka we started developing on UDK--which before our solution we were looking at being the only version of Cyka to develop then.

But then we remembered that we were looking for a way to justify having our game on Steam, which wouldn't have allowed cross-platform gaming to non-Steam games (such as a mobile version of Cyka).  We had already had this idea of a "Steamed Edition" on the backburner of our ideas for quite a while now, but we recently just put the two situations together here.  We wanted to do this version of Cyka using the UDK that we started making and we always wanted to have the Cyka experience available on Steam.  So, in light of just recently finding a way around our problem with Unity Engine, we asked ourselves, "Why not make make this UDK-developed Cyka be our Steam-exclusive version of the game?"

So these two ideas just came together so beautifully and just in time for our Kickstarter crowd-funding effort!  Cyka: Steamed Edition finally gives us a way to justify both building a UDK-developed version of Cyka and providing an exclusive version of the game for Steam as well.   It fits in well with our development planning, and though it's taking a little readjustment to our Kickstarter plans (again), we think it'll be well worth it.  (Plus, we also really didn't want to give up that rather clever title--I mean, "Steamed Edition," for a special edition of a steampunk-themed game that'll be exclusive on Steam?  There's no way we're letting that one go!)

Supporters can get them all!

Many of our Kickstarter supporters can receive both the non-Steam and the Steam version of Cyka.  But we're making this so that any supporter both during and after our Kickstarter campaign receiving any version of the game can fully enjoy the rich experience that is Cyka--and you'll get to taste that experience very soon.  No matter which version you pick up, you'll enjoy the game, and no matter which version you'll have, you will have thousands of gamers to play with.  We will explain just what offerings we have in mind for our Kickstarter supporters on the next upcoming article.  Stay tuned!

- Brian

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