The story about game development company survival.
After successfully funded Kickstarter campaign in 2017 so-called No Man‘s Sky clone gone through a lot of ups and downs. After 20 months in Steam early access has our „the first on the PC platform“ established itself, turned out not to be just a plain copy and is currently on 70% user reviews ranking. Despite inevitable changes in the company structure, the team and the game itself are doing good and preparing for a release.
We always wanted our game to be a big hit. Even though not enough money was collected for all stretch goals, we wanted to fullfill all promises and include every conceivable feature in the game. However the economics after steam early access release did not allowed us to complete the game in the scope we intended.
2018 was a tough year for Craneballs. We haven‘t had enough experience with long-running development of the game so big that nearly every hand must have been assigned to the Planet Nomads and we had no other back-up project. But we learned a lot during the course of time.
With the team much reduced it was impossible to finish the project and our thoughts were headed back towards the mobile game business. We were also considering canceling the game, without even releasing it from the early access. But our marvellous community showed us a great support. It is a pity that we could not have been quite honest about this situation.
Just a few people believed in keeping the game alive while others were assigned to new mobile projects. Even in small team we were able to release many updates with new game content and features like tutorial and story system, blueprints, block coloring and other building improvements, build-vision rework and countless bugfixes and performance optimizations.
We are gradually improving the quality of the game to the point where we are quite satisfied with it. We have improved the internal perception of the game inside Craneballs, were able to move some colleagues out of mobile games back to the Planet Nomads team and also hire a new game designer to give the game an overall consistency.
We want to improve the player immersion into the game, add more variety to weather, rebalance the survival and we still have much things to do, but we are certainly sure that we can plan the full game release in June 2019.
And what will be next? We are still dreaming about a big game with endless possibilities. We will see how the market will react to the Planet Nomads release. We believe that public release will change this and allow us to evaluate our investments in the game as well as valorize our hardly acquired experience and continue to deliver new amazing features. We still keep on!