What's Up Wednesday #3 - August 2019
Welcome to August’s What’s Up Wednesday! Last month we opened up Artist applications, held a poll for how color outcomes will work with breeding, and focused work on user accounts and staffing some more.
Through the applications, we have added three new artists to the team! We are still looking for applications so if you haven’t applied yet or know someone that might be interested in applying, we’re eager to get in touch. Information about the positions and how to apply can be found in our previous What’s Up Wednesday on the second post.
We hope to start sharing some work from our newest artists on the Patreon soon, as well as some previews of our pet colors! Our current plan is to launch into Alpha with 30 colors in the wheel and, with feedback from you guys, add to the wheel as we head forward through Beta and even on into Official Launch. While we have more than 30 colors already picked out, we look forward to seeing what you guys want out of the wheel as well. We have plenty of room left for colors from you all!
This month we plan to get things working with the server as best we can. We’ll be focusing on cleaning up any loose ends from the last two months and making things look a little nicer, starting work on PMs, as well as starting up our Credits page too. Patrons will be contacted about their Credits once we’re ready for them!
We’re also excited to get some of our initial writing out there in the form of Clan descriptions, featuring work from Moderator Bulwark and Artist superbearwars. Patrons backing tiers with the early gameplay preview perk will get access to these descriptions ahead of time, our first posts for the gameplay side! We look forward to giving this side of our Patreon some more love as we get further into being able to focus on the gameplay itself rather than just setting up the foundations of the site.
We can’t wait to start letting you guys get in on the site itself, help us snuff out bugs, and be able to give us your feedback. As always, thank you so much for your patience, interest, and support!
Posted on 7th August 2019 10:35
New Poll: Color Mechanic - Update Jul 25
A brand new poll has been posted over on our Patreon! To vote in the poll, you will need to make sure you have a Patreon account. You do not need to be a Patron of us to be able to vote, simply having a Patreon account should be enough to allow you to vote.
This poll will be closing on the night of August 1st, just over two full weeks from this moment. The results will help us determine how the color mechanics will work for breeding, as well as what colors we will even be making available. We're hoping to get as many votes as we can as this will largely effect the breeding side of the game.
Check out much more in-depth information and vote on the poll here: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28432252
Posted on 18th July 2019 05:40
What's Up Wednesday #2 - July 2019
Welcome to our second edition of What’s Up Wednesday! Our first month since announcing the state of ClanHeart has come and gone, so let’s take a look at what we’ve accomplished and where we’re off to next.
As planned for last month, we made a lot of progress on remaking the site layouts to be much more mobile friendly. We have also established registration for accounts, and begun some preliminary work for pets and image generation for them. A majority of the month was spent getting back into contact with artists and figuring out what all artwork we already have available so that we can also look forward to hiring artists to fill empty positions.
For this month, we look forward to making more progress for user accounts, such as allowing users to write profile descriptions, block others, and change their account settings. We also hope to make great strides on the Staff side of things, such as handling reports, so that we can look at giving you guys access soon as well.
Although we may have the bare necessities ready by next month, we expect to see some potential delays on making the Alpha site fully available. We have identified a few issues with the server that ClanHeart is currently being hosted on. We will do our best to get these issues resolved before we move too far forward in the development stages though, to make sure you guys don’t miss out!
In the meantime, we’d love to remind you all about our current poll available on Patreon! The poll to help determine an upcoming species will be closing in a week. We have plenty more plans for future polls as well, so if you would like to vote and haven’t signed up already, we encourage you to create a Patreon account so you’ll be able to vote in the polls.
Last, but definitely not least, we are opening up Artist Applications for several paid positions. You can check out what positions we currently have available, as well as how to apply for said positions, in the post just below. If you apply, you can look forward to hearing back about your application in roughly a week!
Posted on 3rd July 2019 07:55
Patreon Updates and a Poll!
Our Patreon has received some various updates over the past few weeks as we continue get settled in, including a brand new poll. We'd love to encourage you to check them out!
We have published our first official art-specific post, featuring a special timelapse from superbearwars as progress on the Okapi marking is made. This post and the accompanying video will be made publicly available three months after the publish date - once September 15th rolls around. Pledging to a tier offering early art previews will get you access to the video instantly.
Additionally, a funding goal has been established! This goal aims to fund a brand new Clan, one of several we look forward to adding before we reach our Official launch. Once the goal is reached, the total will then be divvied up to cover the costs of the pet bases for $360, the Clan site backgrounds for $60, and then the remaining $80 would be put towards territory artwork and other assets.
As this is our first Clan funding goal, please keep in mind that the total may fluctuate depending on what sort of assets are still needed. As we get closer to the goal, we look forward to releasing more information about what the new Clan will look like!
To top it all off, we have also just now released our first poll over on Patreon! This poll can be voted on by anyone since it is publicly available, and you can access it here: https://www.patreon.com/posts/27903036.
We are looking to bring some more diversity to the species that will be available, and find inspiration in Galliformes! Please let us know which set of bases you would be most interested in seeing brought to life. Voting will close on July 10th, so make sure to get your vote in while you can.
All of the above updates can be checked out on our Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/ClanHeart! If you haven't already, we also encourage you to join our public Discord and chat with us: https://discord.gg/6yPUYGG.
Posted on 25th June 2019 08:43
What's Up Wednesday #1 - June 2019
Welcome to the first edition of What’s Up Wednesday! What’s Up Wednesday is intended to be a monthly newsletter giving a rough outline of everything surrounding ClanHeart. You can expect to see updates about the progress we’ve made over the past month, our plans for this month, and any other juicy details we couldn’t wait to share. You can look forward to future editions on the first Wednesday of every month, we sure will be!
If you haven’t read our last news post, I encourage you to check it out. It gives some details of where ClanHeart stands, as well as some things you should know in regards to previous site plans. Things have changed a lot this month and old information may no longer be accurate!
So what do we hope to have in store for this month? Well, we need to start at the very core of ClanHeart. Our primary focus is to rebuild the site layouts, especially with varying screen sizes in mind. Some of this work has already been completed and can be seen over at https://alpha.clanheart.com using our Splash layout. User accounts and registration are also included in our main goal for the month, although these will not become available until we have prepared the Staff management side.
Any spare time for the month will then be put towards Pets, most notably their images. Because pets are expected to be one of the most intensive parts of the site, we definitely foresee this aspect taking a much larger chunk of time than many other pieces.
On the other end of the spectrum, our fantastic artists have been hard at work to get some markings completed and ready for future use. In the preview below, you can see Appaloosa, Okapi, and Genet displayed respectively. Keep in mind that these markings may still see future changes as our artists feel more comfortable working with the bases we have available.
We are excited to share further previews and updates with you throughout consecutive editions of What’s Up Wednesdays. In the meantime, you are welcome to come chat with us or others interested in ClanHeart through our public Discord! https://discord.gg/6yPUYGG
If you are interested in more frequent, early access previews, we have also now launched a Patreon page! We have provided various tiers to allow you to best determine exactly what sort of early access previews you are after, and what perks you are most interested in. Various polls will also be included in the perks to allow you to help directly influence some of where ClanHeart goes. You can check out our Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/ClanHeart
That wraps up our first What’s Up Wednesday, but our work is far from over! Now begins a new era of life for ClanHeart, but we never would have gotten this far if not for you all. Your continued support means the world to us, and we hope you’re just as excited as us to see ClanHeart return once again.
Posted on 5th June 2019 10:35
Current Status and Looking Forward
Hello everyone, I know it has been quite some time since you last received an update. There has been a lot of discussion and consideration going on behind the scenes, and now I would like to bring details of the situation forward to you all.
Let me introduce myself before we continue much further. I am StarSea, a freelance programmer with a passion for petsites and art. I have been studying programming for several years with the dream of making my own petsite some day. Back in early August 2018, I joined the staff team as a coder.
I have since received the opportunity to potentially obtain ownership of ClanHeart, however, this does not come lightly. Over the course of the next two years, I will be working to bring the site back to life and rebuild it from the ground up. The plan is to take the project through all three stages - alpha, beta, and official launch - in as transparent a fashion as possible.
Throughout this two-year project, I will be acting in the position of owner, however it is important to note that I do not actually own ClanHeart at this point in time. This means that I am directing development, hiring staff, and purchasing assets, but if I do not succeed in this project then I will have to step back from all of that and return to my position of simply coder.
Because I am taking on this project with full intentions of obtaining official ownership, I will be working with my own ideas and plans to build a site I want to own and that I believe is better fit for the playerbase. Due to that, information previously stated in news posts or on social media is not guaranteed to be brought into this, such as a Kickstarter or the same specific color wheels.
Despite this, I would like to try and keep as many of ClanHeart’s original core features as I can. Most notably being the clans themselves, the extensive customizability provided even for basic pets, and territories. They won’t be exactly as you remember, with attempts to save the servers a lot of strain while also hopefully providing better player experience.
There is still so much more information to be shared, so please stick with us as we all give ClanHeart our best shot! I plan to be releasing a public Discord server as well as a Patreon in the near future, so look forward to those too!
Posted on 1st June 2019 08:56
Hi again everyone!
There's not much to report this month - art is being created steadily, but our two coders have been busy with other work.
There is good news, however: we've managed to secure some financial support for the site and are on the lookout for a part-time coder to help speed things along. If you or anyone you know might be interested, please send me a PM on-site - we are working on a tight budget, however, so please keep that in mind!
Regardless, we expect the availability of our existing coders to be more flexible soon - around Mid January.
We'll make sure to keep updates regular, even if there isn't much going on behind the scenes - at this stage, we're fairly committed to rebuilding the site's foundations entirely so it may be awhile before the game enters a technical alpha once more.
I'm personally hoping to see the pet demo available much sooner than January, but due to workloads, I can't specify a date for it just yet.
Thanks for everyone's continued interest in ClanHeart!
Posted on 16th October 2018 11:44
Hi again everyone!
Things have been a bit quiet here lately - we've still got a little bit more waiting to do before we can get into the thick of things. As nothing is confirmed on this front, I can't relay too much information.
That said, we haven't been idle:
We've some markings in the works from our new marking artist, Mintaka.
We've also got a new coder on board to help out as well, StarSea.
Once development on the new site begins, we'll be looking at a couple major changes.
First and foremost, most of your progression will be tied to your account, not individual characters. We'll have more specifics on this soon, but we'll be looking to rework and introduce skills, stats and abilities - not just for combat, but for crafting and exploration as well.
Secondly, you'll likely be able to collect any species and add them to your clan; you won't be restricted by a single type.
When the new site is up and forums are functional, we'll engage with the community with development concepts/designs more fully and consider feedback before we implement them.
We've a long road ahead of us, but we'll get there soon enough!
Posted on 14th September 2018 09:44
This is a detailed update of where we're at. I'd like to make sure we're being as transparent as possible with information as we move forward.
At the moment, we're still largely waiting for the server issues to be resolved so we can host an early version of the image creator tool. Here's some quick examples of what to expect:
We'll be using another website for testing while we set everything up - once we've got the server issues resolved, we'll be looking to port over features to the new site. This is largely due to the framework ClanHeart uses (Laravel) being out-dated.
What this means for users, however, is that you'll likely need to register on the test site later on. You may need an invite code to access the new site, but we'll be sure to provide keys to players who've been tracking progress here.
For now, however, we've got a new coder helping out with some of the more minor issues which we intend to resolve ahead of time for features that will be kept. We hope to have some progress on the missing territories as well as a way to manually cancel the clan transfer process so players can continue testing existing features.
Progress Wipe Information:
We're looking for some feedback on this!
At the moment, a currency & pet wipe is a certainty. The experimenting that we've done so far has largely indicated the economy is widely unbalanced and needs a significant overhaul for the site to have any sort of longevity.
We do need to reach a decision on what to do with existing accounts. We could:
- Clear all account information.
- Preserve all account information.
- Preserve accounts that have been active since the announcement last December and clear the rest.
The latter option would primarily open up username options.
Note: In all cases, with proof of purchase, you'll have an amount of premium currency credited to your account if you spent any amount of real-money on ClanHeart in the past.
Staff Information/Progress Expectations:
Right now, we are working with a small team of volunteers; there's very little monetary support for ClanHeart beyond the essentials.
With the second coder, I'd expect to see more frequent updates to minor bugs and issues on the existing site, but larger updates may be irregular largely due to schedules & workloads of the primary coder.
This means that I may need to bring bad news from time to time, largely related to delays, but I feel it's important that the community knows where we're at in terms of progress.
That said, we won't be looking to establish any means of making purchases on ClanHeart until we're certain the site is presentable to the public.
Until then, please remember that ClanHeart is in pre-alpha!
As a final note, none of the current staff members were associated with the previous developers/staff of ClanHeart. We will also be looking to recruit helpers in some capacity as we progress.
This is where things get tricky! I'd like to relay with the community frequently on this front.
My initial impressions are as follows:
The breeding system is quite clearly broken, and in some cases it's far too easy to unlock new pets (provided everything is working). We need to rework this entirely.
The territory system is fairly decent, but needs some rebalancing (for example, some quests yield 20,000+ sD for materials that cost less than 200 sD in the stalls). We need to re-balance this.
The battle system is heavily flawed, favouring time invested rather than any intentional game-play. The way rounds resolve make little sense, and breakable abilities seem needlessly punishing. We need to rework this system entirely; additionally, we may be looking to scrap PvP / PvC content all together.
Beyond those systems, everything else is largely standard. We've been looking at different approaches for ClanHeart (even going so far as to consider shifting it to a sort of RPG), but ultimately I think we're best keeping it a traditional pet site. We may also look at allowing players to have a mix of species within their clan.
The delays in coding have given us time to discuss ideas and concepts, and we'll make sure to detail them openly before they're implemented so the community can contribute their ideas and opinions.
Image PSD Files
We intend to make these files publicly available once the image generation tool is available. You're free to use them as you'd like, but you must credit ClanHeart if you host or use the file outside of ClanHeart.
Additionally, we may be looking to have official marking contests wherein the winners will receive premium currency at launch as well as have their designs implemented into the game as an option for all players.
If you have any questions regarding images, contact our local expert Syzygy!
Thanks for reading!
If you have any general questions, please send me a PM - we'll hopefully have another progress update for you all soon!
Posted on 10th August 2018 08:42
Hi again everyone!
Just letting you know where we're at -
A prototype of the image generation tool has been completed, it's just not available yet! We ran into some issues with the foundation of the website itself, and figured it'd be a good opportunity to upgrade ahead of time to ensure things run smoothly.
We've now run into some server issues which we hope to have sorted soon; once that's resolved, we should have a prototype pet creator for users to play around with while we get the rest of the site set-up.
I can't provide an exact time-frame, but if the server issues aren't resolved within a week or so, I'll at least get some images of the new pet creator up on the forums.
Apologies for the delays thanks to everyone for their continued interest in ClanHeart!
Posted on 27th July 2018 07:04