SotM Digital Sneak Peek #1

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Lateralis
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SotM Digital Sneak Peek #1

Hello again fellow Sentinels fans! We know it’s been a while since we talked about the SotM video game for iOS and Android tablets, but we have something to show you (and only you) today.
 
First of all, thanks for all your feedback and support so far! Your comments on the prototype video were really helpful in letting us know what the fans really want from a SotM video game. More than anything else, the biggest question in our minds (and probably in yours) is “how do you take a game as expansive as Sentinels of the Multiverse and fit it on a tablet screen?” Starting today, we’ll begin to show you how we plan to do so, starting with the player screen.
 
There are a couple of disclaimers up front. The images posted below are not “in engine,” but Photoshop mockups. That being said, we are currently part way through implementing the first iteration of what you see here. We expect (but can’t guarantee) that we’ll have some actual in-engine gameplay to show you by the end of May. Secondly, you might remember that we promised to have you “playing in the environment” when we showed off the gameplay prototype a few months ago. That is still our goal, but the environment art you see here is just lifted as-is from the card game. We’re hard at work on the real environments but none is close enough to show off yet.
 
In the first concept screenshot below, the game is a number of rounds in. It’s the Wraith’s turn. The heroes are a little beat up, and Legacy has been incapacitated. Since it’s the Wraith’s turn, you can see her play area fully. You can also see the villain and environment cards in play. To quickly see another hero’s play area you just tap their panel - as seen in the second concept screenshot.
 
Below that, we’ve included an “annotated screenshot” to give you a slightly better idea of what’s going on if you haven’t worked it all out for yourself. Keep in mind that this is a concept and a work in progress, so many things are in flux, such as icon design & precise card layout.
 
You’ve probably noticed that the cards don’t look exactly like SotM cards on this screen. We’ve taken this approach in order to display as much important information as possible on this screen. At any point, you will be able to bring up a “full card” from any card you see (possibly a double tap, possibly tap-and-hold, we’re still working out the details). This will show you the card exactly as it exists in the card game, with a couple cool things you can’t do in the physical world like calculating (H) values automatically.
 
As I mentioned above, this is the “player screen.” This is what you will see during a player turn. Villain turns and environment turns will look a bit different, but we’ll get to those another time. 
 
You may have noticed that this looks suspiciously like 2 pages of an open comic book and that’s not by accident. The most common compliment of Sentinels of the Multiverse is that “it feels like playing a comic book” and we are very interested in supporting that feeling. 
 
Thanks for taking a look, we can’t wait to hear what you think!
 
(Click to bring up a larger version)



 


One of the makers of Sentinels Sidekick and Sentinels Digital
http://sentinelsdigital.com
http://handelabra.com

Craig
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Super exciting! Thanks!


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phantaskippy
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Wow, this is super cool.

Love the start of turn, end of turn exclamation points, and the damage type symbols.

Love the environment images behind the characters, pretty much everything about it.

 

Foote
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I like the quick glance Icons you are using. I can look at the art for Improptu Invention and without reading text I can tell I will be 1) Drawing a card 2) Searching my deck 3) Playing a card. Its a nice visual distilation of a more complicated mechanic.

The P symbol for Legacys incap and on Utility Belt are the same, but mean pretty different things in game. I certainly understand what they mean, but that is due to my familiarity with the card game. New users might get mixed up. There is a balance between simplification and oversimplification, but strongly suspect you guys are very well aware of that.

I very much like the comicbook style panel from a visual design perspective. I think its much cleaner and effective than the constantly moving and rotating environment view from your first demo video. 

Strong work! Looking forward to continued updates on this.

Lateralis
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thanks for the feedback!

The iconography is definitely still in flux. For the moment, the "P" icon means "has something to do with powers" and nothing more than that. we'll be able to see how some of this stuff is working once we get into heavy playtesting. and agreed on the balance. at some point, you have so many different icons, they become meaningless. this is also why you will be able to bring up the full cards at any point in the game. the icons should give you a good overview of what's going on. but to really know what you're doing, there is no substitute for the actual game text.


One of the makers of Sentinels Sidekick and Sentinels Digital
http://sentinelsdigital.com
http://handelabra.com

MigrantP
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The approach we are taking so far with the icons is that they serve as a reminder about what the card has associated with it. They are not meant to, and cannot reasonably, fully describe the actions on the card.

Having said that, the icons are a work in progress and we're happy to hear your ideas about them. I agree that likely we'll want to have at least a couple of power icons, one indicating "this card has a power" and another indicating "this card affects how powers work."

Edit: what he said!


Lead Bit Flipper, Handelabra Games
Developer of digital tabletop games & apps like SotM: The Video Game and Bottom of the 9th

Foote
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For cards like Utility Belt or Legacy's ring which grant an additional Power use on your Power Phase, maybe a [P+] icon would work.

For abilities that grant other heros a power use, maybe [P-->] could work? Thats supposed to be a directional arrow. 

For cards with a Power on them, maybe a black square with a white P would work?

Those are just simple ideas off the top of my head. I totally agree with the notion that too many symbols would be overkill and destroy the intent of quick glance reminders. But slight variations on icons, if they can communicate the difference well enough visually, could be a way of adding icons while not adding icons. 

Orphanleni
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I cannot wait for this app but my fear is that my SotM obsession will turn into a full blown addiction with the ability to play anytime anywhere

Foote
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Orphanleni wrote:

I cannot wait for this app but my fear is that my SotM obsession will turn into a full blown addiction with the ability to play anytime anywhere

So glad I do not own a tablet for just this reason haha

Slamin
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Looking really nice.  I end up playing SoTM solo mostly due to time pressure related to having three children in loads of various activities.  One of them likes to play but we end up often not having enough time due to other commitments.  This will be a dream come true for getting it to the (virtual) table.

 

 

Lateralis
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you sound just like me, right down to the 3 kids! :)


One of the makers of Sentinels Sidekick and Sentinels Digital
http://sentinelsdigital.com
http://handelabra.com

Reckless
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This looks quite impressive!


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The Matriarch's Psychic damage is her forcing a gratuitous amount of Snapple facts about birds into a hero's brain.

cdig
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I love it and can't wait for the game to come out.  Is there any chance of a pc release?

I'd suggest redesigning the "teammates" area.  So much space is taken up with the artwork of the heros along with that bar that tells cards in hand, play and HP.  

 

I'd do 3 tiny icons with just the heros face, with an HP bar next to it, similar to the villians hp bar.  Then you could select a specific teammate, and use the gained space to have a much more informative layout.