We've been heads down on remastering "(I Fell in Love with) The Majesty of Colors" the last few months (along with getting Rosette Dramatic LARP to a stopping point). We wrote about our realizations on project multitasking earlier this year, so we've tried to focus down as much as is reasonable.
That means that the in-flight game most left alone is Exploit: Zero Day, our cyberthriller puzzle game.
The Good, The Bad
What's good is that the game is in a great state for most players: the free story is complete and available, and all system and cluster editing tools are available to players who are in the closed alpha. We're still sending out alpha keys on our newsletter.
The bad news is that the prelude story, "Headless Swarm", is sitting about halfway complete. It's purchasable, and that first half is playable, but we won't be returning to finish that storyline until after "The Majesty of Colors" is released. That's definitely a stressor for us, and we appreciate our players' patience.
It's weird to have a game live like this and not be working on it. It's not like Ossuary, where it's downloadable on a variety of storefronts and the folks playing it are disconnected from us.
But we're still upgrading code packages that run Exploit: Zero Day on a regular basis (for security reasons and to fix bugs in those packages). We still see site analytics for it alongside all our other sites. We just aren't as disconnected from those players, even if they aren't getting much visible time with us.
What Will Players Do?
This situation also provides some very early data about how Exploit: Zero Day might exist if "Headless Swarm" and the first full season of content don't make enough money to support additional development.
We've written before that in that case, we'd decide to let the game continue to exist without developing new features or story for it. Will folks make use of the forums for collaboration and/or roleplaying? How is our traffic when we aren't actively marketing hard and how are people finding us? How many folks will play regularly?
With only a few hundred users right now and the alpha still locked down, we can't draw too many conclusions from current behavior, but it's worth watching.
Want to be a hacker for social justice? Buying "Headless Swarm" get you immediate access to both the prelude story as it's developed and all free content. Otherwise, sign up for the Exploit: Zero Day newsletter for an access code when the next mailing goes out. You'll be able to play the entire free story arc as well as exchange puzzles and clusters of puzzles with other players.
(Member of the press or a streamer? Request a key over on Promoter.)