In today’s update, we’ll be giving you a general update on development progress and tasks to come from the animation/coding side of the Shiryo game, an update on the Shiryo Portal directly from our Portal developer…
And one further special update where we try to answer the big question on everyone’s mind.
At the time of writing this message, 100% of the animations of the 75 cards to be used in the Alpha Test release are completed, with only around 5–10% of all necessary animation assets including skeletal animations needing completion.
Right now these completed animations are being coded into the game itself, this is the main focus of coding and will take a fair length of time.
The speed bottleneck that we have around coding is simply the amount of coders we have available, Rick has been our powerhouse coder for some time but even still there’s only so quickly he can work — when his time also needs to be utilised overseeing other areas of the game.
(It’s also worth bearing in mind, many coding objectives from last year were extended due to the repeated significant updates & improvements we made towards the game i.e creating new boards entirely, an issue we don’t need to stress about this year.)
We’re doing all we can to speed up this area of development, i.e, now that the vast majority of animation assets are complete — Connor is able to leverage his time towards coding too in a tag team effort with Rick, which has of course hastened our work rate on this task.
However, the sheer volume of coding that needs to be completed (beyond the animation systems) is still significant.
We’ve been consciously trying to hire a competent coder since our previous assistant coder Tomat left the team. We’ve repeatedly come across the issue of high-level coders wanting little involvement within the crypto space, despite that our project has been going for so long — and with so much work already being completed.
We recently doubled our efforts on the search for hiring and we do have some new candidates we’re currently vetting.
While we can not put a timeline on ‘when’ a coder will accept the position and prove proficient in the role, we can confidently say that when we do find the right candidate, the work rate will be accelerated massively.
The work rate we’ve already managed to achieve with a relatively small team has been good — and we’re much more proficient at using what we have available now than at this time last year, so any additional staff is of great assistance. More on this later in the update.
The next coding priorities after the animation systems are completed will be the sound system and completing AWS.
Whilst the animation assets are being coded into the game, our sound designer is working his way through his list of sound effects for the game.
Though the sound effects are ‘small’, there are many to work through and as always we need to be sure that they all thematically fit well with the brand. This task won’t hinder the work rate of any other tasks, given that coding priority is currently placed on other areas of the game.
The same logic applies to the AWS side / Shiryo Portal, as our portal developer has his work cut out for him for the next few months, it allows Rick time to focus on the animation systems until the time is right for priority to shift back here.
Next we’ll discuss the Shiryo Portals updates with words from our Portal Developer.
In regards to current and future work in the Shiryo Portal, there are a few changes and updates we made to it over Christmas that are still being coded in as we speak.
As we completed the authentication side of the sign-up process, we realized that there was a huge essential feature that we’d missed out on for the future users…privacy features.
When you’re on social media for instance, you’ll often have an array of profile settings that allow you to reveal/hide whichever aspects of your personal data you see fit, such as your email address, d.o.b etc.
Given our game will have a huge social presence (with the chat features and such), it’s essential that we make sure our users have full control over their privacy.
Who can search for you, what information can someone view before/after they add you as a friend, whether that’s your email address or your win/loss record, and of course the good ole ‘Block’ feature?
I’ve been working on building these features, although we’re still yet to fully finalize what will be viewable by default. An idea we’re toying with is simply allowing users to select their privacy settings before finalizing their profile sign-up, so users instantly begin with the privacy they wish.
These kinds of features affect how users play the game too, such as being invited to different guilds, can ‘anyone’ invite you to the guild or will only friends be able to invite you?
Alongside updating the privacy features, we’ve recently made some small changes to the Dapp design too. We came across a design flaw with our chat feature, as both the chat features and deck builder were appearing on the right-hand side of the screen — these features would have conflicted with one another (as seen by the screenshots below).
The good thing with developing is we see these issues and are only lead to creating updates that are smarter, more functional and user friendly. In this case, we’ve simply changed the social bar from being at the right by ‘default’, to a simple drop-down tab that showcases all the features.
The design to this icon may change slightly as this is a modification I’ve made myself, however the basic feature will remain the same. Click the tab and it’ll drop down ‘above’ everything else, showcasing a simple navigation bar for you to switch between global / guild / friends chats, as well as the options for your privacy settings.
We’ve included a few screenshots below of each feature for you to see, please don’t mind the design notes on the second screen shot, they’re for me to keep in mind as I update the features.
Once coding of all the above is completed, the next task I’ll be moving onto is coding the deck builder into the Portal.
That’s our Shiryo Portal updates for now… but we know that there’s a big question on the Wolfpack’s mind.
The Big Question
How long will it be until the Alpha release of the game is available?
If our experience throughout our last year has shown us anything, it’s two things;
1. We must always show the community where we’re at. We’ve been as transparent with development as we can be, updating the community so you see our problems and our victories in real-time. As you’ll have witnessed, unforeseen issues can crop up and further delays can occur (as is typical with any game in development).
2. We must fall back on our old motto, we can’t promise, but we will over-deliver when the time comes.
As it stands with our current staff, we’re still looking at a long year ahead for the Alpha Test of the game to be viable, our previous estimates are based on our ability to hire new candidates to fill necessary roles. As that’s where we’re bottle-necked, there’s simply no way for us to ‘speed up’ the coding process until we have the staff — which is why we’re drastically increasing our hiring efforts.
With new staff on board our lead game developer firmly believes this will expedite our development — and we can deliver the alpha in a more timely manner. Please bear in mind that the way our TCG is being developed, means that when we are delivering alpha we’re over 90% of the way through completion of the entire game.
So where does that leave us now? We need to ramp up hiring to speed up our development timeline as we want to get this game out to you all as soon as possible — without compromising on the quality of the product. Achieving this requires a bigger monthly budget than we currently have, thus we have decided to bridge Shiryo to the SOLANA blockchain.
In doing so we accomplish 2 major concerns the community and our team share:
Firstly bridging to Solana brings us millions of new potential eyes on our project, it’s no secret that Solana has surged in popularity, leveraging this serves as a massive marketing campaign in itself.
Any new liquidity generated can be used for additional staff hiring allowing us to expand our game development team, alongside fresh marketing campaigns for Shiryo. It also takes advantage of a fast, cheap and popular blockchain for people interested in buying into our token without wanting to spend a lot on gas fees.
Solana is a major network used for gaming, so it brings with it a lot of benefits — most big crypto projects offer multichain and we are no different.
As we see it, bringing new eyes to Shiryo at this stage where we’re able to show our history of dedication to development through the bear market — is a perfect time for it. Newcomers will see we’re dedicated, we’ll be able to actualise our game sooner for the community and have more eyes on our brand, we see this as a win-win for all.
Please note that there will be NO bridging between the ETH and Solana tokens (at least at the start). We do not want there to be major fluctuations between the prices via people trying to arbitrage the tokens. Eth remains our number 1 network, nothing will change in terms of development on the ETH network.
We are simply opening a new door to bring in new eyes to our project — and in doing so allowing us to upscale our rate of development for this eagerly anticipated game.
The more eyes on us the bigger of a success we will be.
We will continue to keep the community closely updated to our processes, an incredible game is on the way.
Thank you all for your continued patience and support.