After a four month prototyping phase in the summer of 2017, The Cycle entered production in February 2018. We had an ambitious goal of entering into Alpha within 6 months, so in July 2018. We felt, and still do, that it’s very important that we gather player feedback as early as possible so that we can make the necessary adjustments before we become too invested in our ideas. Sharing early with the community, listening to feedback and ultimately acting on it is how we believe The Cycle will reach its full potential.
With that in mind, we want to share with you the plans we’ve made for our next releases, up to Closed Beta — which is when the game will be up and running 24/7. We very much look forward to hearing what you think about it.
Alpha V: Dec 14th & Dec 15th, 2018
We got a lot of valuable feedback from Alpha IV where we introduced squad mode. The focus for Alpha V will be to implement the following:
- Community feedback – We addressed all issues raised by the community during Alpha IV, with the main focus on balance (e.g, credit economy, weapon upgrades, mods, etc.)
- Text Chat – We took our current barebones chat solution and added rooms for different languages on the Station, and made the chat available to squad and pact members during the match.
- Voice Chat – Now you will be able to talk with your squad or pact mate during the match. You can mute everyone or select push to talk.
- New Contract – Gathering Bright Cap mushrooms has been added to the list of possible contracts at the start of the match.
- New Abilities – Introducing 3 new abilities – the Stim Boost, the Trench Grenade (both baseline) and the Surveillance Ward (Osiris Agent unlock)
- Central Area Rework – This is one of the most important parts of the map, so we wanted to invest more time in it, in order to ensure that the final stages of the match are as much fun as possible.
Alpha VI: Feb 14-16, 2019
- Match-making – At the moment we only have a singular match-making queue. In Alpha VI we will introduce separate queues for different regions. So that, if you are located in Europe, you’ll be matched with other players from the region, whereas players located in US will be matched together. It will be possible for a Europe based and a US based player to play together, but only via Squad Mode.
- Scalability – in preparation for closed beta, we are making changes to the games backend functions, so that it can handle a larger player base.
- Station UI/UX overhaul– We listened to your feedback and acknowledge the difficulties players face when using the Station menus (Factions, abilities, crafting, etc). Therefore we are working on a style overhaul of the user interface to ensure a more intuitive user experience.
- New Ranged Enemy – We will add a new enemy type that hovers above other monsters and buffs them. Better take this one out first!
- Salvage Contract – A new contract where you have to salvage valuable items, but watch out that they don’t get damaged else they’ll not be worth much!
- Character Customization – The temporary character screen in the Station will become a character customization suite, allowing you to change gender, ethnicity, headgear/hair, torso, boots and gloves.
- Ability Mods – We will extend the system that allows you to modify your kits and weapons, to your abilities.
- Environmental Storytelling – We will add more details to the map through weathering, decals and additional props, to make it more immersive and tell the story of Fortuna III through the environment.
Closed Beta 1 — Early Spring 2019
- Contract depth – We want to add more depth to contracts, exactly how is yet to be determined, but we believe this is important for replayability.
- Skill-based Match-making – We want to ensure that players of similar skill and progression levels (faction reputation, unlocked equipment, etc.) will face-off against each other, so that the challenge feels right for everyone.
- Lobby and Spawn overhaul – We want to take the lobby in a different direction and offer a more meaningful and immersive experience outside of matches. Additionally we want to give players more say over where on the map they spawn.
- Gear set templates – At the moment you can only save one set of gear (Alpha). In the future we want to give players the option to save multiple gear loadouts, so it’s easier to adjust gear and strategy from match to match.
- Navigation Tools – At the moment we plan to implement a compass, but this may change in the future. In general we want to make it easier for players to find their bearings without having to rely on frequently opening the map.
- The Cycle Theme Music – This will be used in-game and also for promotional purposes.
- Environmental Storytelling – Building on changes for Alpha VI, we want to focus on specific locations on the map that we feel should better show what happened on Fortuna III in the past and give hints, as to what the future holds.
So that’s how the general roadmap looks like right now. Since we believe “the map is not the territory”, we’ll adjust it as needed. In addition to the above, every release will also include new weapons, mods, character customization and occasionally new abilities. We did not include these to avoid too much repetition.
Please note that the roadmap is subject to change. We’ll always prioritize reacting to valid community feedback over following our roadmap religiously.
Let us know what you think, either in the comments below or join our Discord.
And if you haven’t already, sign-up for the Alpha and check out the game on Friday 14th Dec and Saturday 15th Dec!