We sat down with Game Director Peter Holzapfel, Lead Game Designer Torkel Forner, Lead Narrative Designer Báirbre Bent, and Lead Level Designer Dan Banefelt to get some insight on what’s coming next for Dreadnought and how the team is taking larger steps to implement feedback moving forward!
1. What sort of PvE or story mode content can we expect out of Dreadnought, I want to know more about the universe?
Peter: From the early start of Dreadnought, we thought about the universe. In terms of gameplay, we had and still have a focus on the PvP game though, since we want to create a stable and fun core before we expand on the PvE side.
Behind the scenes we are already experimenting with a PvE and narrative based format that works with a live game.
Since we are all big fans of TV shows, this is a direction we would like to explore further. Until then, we want to give our community more information on the story background of the universe and bring that more into our PvP game environment.
Báirbre: I’m very excited about the Dreadnought universe and am really enjoying developing it together with artists, level designers, audio and game design and everyone on the team.
There are so many open questions for the community - What happened to bring us to a state where we have giant battleships fighting in space? Who’s Bix? and the big one - who were the Transhumans?
All these questions have answers and you can see hints to answers being rolled out more and more through our map, ships, intro movie and tutorial. We aim to deliver another insight in the story with every new piece of content.
With new game modes like Onslaught, we go a little deeper than PVP. And with the PVE we’ve been developing we’ll go even further.
Dan: What we’re toying with right now is a system that groups PVE based events into larger seasons. Each season comes with its own story and narrative arc that fleshes out current events, the history of the Dreadnought universe, and both new and familiar locations.
We’re aiming to make it easily approachable for the people interested in the story or casual fun, while also providing a (very) hardcore and competitive challenge for those who are interested. ☺
2. There are a lot of bugs and requests we have for the game that take a long time to get in, what are you doing to quicken this process?
Peter: We are aware that our reaction time wasn’t as fast as we would have liked it to be.
This was mainly caused by the extensive systems we implemented into the game that caused a lot of effort and made it hard to straighten out all the things that have been less than ideal in the live game.
I want to thank players for their patience again. We are incredibly grateful for your loyalty and the amount of time you dedicate to our game.
So what are we doing to change this in the future and get better at it? We are already focusing heavily on bugfixing in our current development cycle and the patch notes for the next updates should show this clearly.
On top of that, we are setting up a live quality team that has the clear goal to focus on existing features that are out there with our players and to have shorter reaction times.
We love the game as much as you do, so let us know if it works!
3. Are Squad Sizes always going to be 3? I want to play with my friends!
Torkel: It’s something that we’re talking about right now, as we also feel that 3 is perhaps a bit too restrictive. When we went from 5 players on a team to 8, we felt that we needed to reduce the squad size as one squad of 5 would be too dominant (it sometimes felt as if it was back then too).
Right now, we’re talking about raising the squad size to 4 so that two squads can effectively form a team.
4. There's been a few balance changes, mostly to Tactical Cruisers, in recent patches. What about Corvettes/Dola/other balance changes? What can we expect in the future in terms of balance changes, and what things is the balance team considering?
Torkel: There are several things we’re currently looking at – both the Dola and Corvettes as a whole are really high up on that list. We feel that some of the things we want to fix will require a fair few changes across the game. Corvettes are a good example of one of these, where we are currently looking at how to best proceed with assisted targeting, shields, modules, etc.
Some other things we’re looking at and will hopefully improve in the near future are all deployable modules (mines, repair pods, turrets), how some modules become less viable as the tiers get higher (e.g. Armor Amps having shorter durations at higher tiers) and shields for all classes.
As for individual ships, we try to continuously look at data and listen to all feedback to figure out what changes we feel are necessary when it comes to weapons, ship movement and health. As mentioned earlier, we’re working on finding the best ways of being able to get these sorts of changes into the game more frequently.