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Thread: Cities in Motion - Developer Diary #8 - Final Touches

  1. #1

    Post Cities in Motion - Developer Diary #8 - Final Touches

    Hi everyone,

    About a month before the final release date, we released an open beta for Cities in Motion so as to offer players a sneak peek at the game and for our team to get valuable feedback. Players came up with a lot of issues and excellent suggestions; we fixed all indicated bugs and worked on improvements for the parts that didn't meet expectations.

    One significant issue was the ticket prices. There was no way to always show the user what ticket prices were too high and by how much, since the system was tied tomonthly calculations, rather than daily ones. The logic was too deeply integrated into the system to completely change it, so we built a new system on top of the old one that compared ticket prices to the economic situation of the city, thus creating an approximate 'good' price. One of the challenges was that we needed to avoid creating any new text, since new translations would compromise our tight schedule. The system had to be so intuitive that it required no explanation.

    Another thing that caused problems was building metro lines on different levels. Connecting ground-level lines to other levels had a bug, making it impossible. All in all, building the elevated metro can be a bit tricky, but we wanted to keep the tool rather versatile. Now, you can build numerous lines on top of each other, over water areas, and rising with the terrain whenever needed. The elevated metro is the most adaptive of all the vehicle types and offers endless possibilities. The construction bug has also been fixed for the final version of the game, so you can now use the metro building tools to their full potential.

    Vehicle capacity was one facet that was widely discussed on the forum. We didn't aim for realism, but rather for a balanced game; still, it seemed that some of the capacities were just too small. Buses were too expensive to keep and carried too few passengers to be really profitable. We did a lot of pondering and testing, and finally raised the buses' passenger capacity for the final version. This greatly improved the buses, making them more useful.

    Attachment 32563

    Many players also saw their vehicles bunching up, with three vehicles one after another on a line. We looked at the options we had, and decided to work on the vehicle AI. In the final version, the AI commands the vehicles to keep some distance between them, making bunching up less likely. It only happens in special circumstances, such as exceptionally large traffic jams or if other vehicles on the streets force the player vehicles together. On regular lines, the vehicles actively keep their distance, making the vehicle distribution much better.

    We were thrilled by the number of downloads for the beta, and all the wonderful suggestions and reports on the forums. Many excellent improvements were implemented solely because of player feedback, and some ideas will be saved until later on. A great big 'thank you' for everyone who participated in the beta testing, because Cities in Motion wouldn't be as good a game without you!

    Attachment 32562

    We'd also like to encourage modding -- there are already tools and mods available, and we would love to see more! At the time of this writing, there are mods for replacing sounds, doubling the vehicle capacity, and repainting vehicles. There will surely be more soon! Also, Cities in Motion comes with a map editor, so you can build and share maps with other players if modding isn't your thing. We hope you make the game your own and have lots of fun playing!

    On behalf of the whole Colossal Order team,
    Karoliina Korppoo
    Lead Designer on Cities in Motion

  2. #2
    Captain stevebone's Avatar
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    thanks for the info! Looking forward to tomorrow!

  3. #3
    Private Naef's Avatar
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    @co_martsu: Those final touches sound great!
    Do you have any idea at what time CiM will be released on GamersGate tomorrow?

  4. #4
    Sergeant Hendrikus's Avatar
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    You are a wonderful bunch of creators. Fair, openminded, enthousiast, coŲperative, creative, funny, listening, doing etc.
    Thank you! This attitude should be common and the way you let us, players, participate is unique in the world. This can only bring a superb product.
    Let's go CiM'mers !!!
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  5. #5
    Colonel David Comnenus's Avatar
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    ^
    Here's what I have so far:
    -Steam isn't releasing for "one day and 9 hours", or tomorrow at about 20:00 GMT/15:00 EST.
    -GamesPlanet is issuing codes at 23:00 GMT today (presumably for a 00:00 release), which translates into 18:00 EST. They are also more expensive (the 14.99 GBP price translates into over 19.99 USD).
    -PLAY isn't doing a download...they're just "normal" sales from what I can tell, releasing on the 25th.
    -Gametap, which is basically GamesPlanet, is promising release by 00:00 EST/05:00 GMT.
    -Amazon.de is on a delayed release along with PLAY.
    -I don't know what Beamdog is doing, but this is also the first I've ever heard of them.

    That's what I have for now...GG is the only one not listing a time that's doing a day-of release that I can find
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  6. #6
    Ah, this should prevent Magicka-level hectic times for you guys.
    Maybe that will limit the post-release stress.
    Looking forward to tomorrow. I'm happy buses are better now. I like buses.

  7. #7
    That left-hand-drive Routemaster hasn't stopped looking really really strange yet :-D

    Good luck CO!

  8. #8
    First Lieutenant Bel_Alex's Avatar
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    Thanks for that part of diary! It was really interesting to read this, and I hope, you'll pay such huge attention to players' suggestions in future (while creating add-ons ;D), like you pay now.
    All the best!

  9. #9
    Master of Orion delra's Avatar
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    Nice. Thanks for the update. You seem to have captured the spirit of the feedback thread in those fixes. Don't forget there's been quite a few crashes fixed along the way too.

    Typically the game should be up on GG around 8 or 10 European time. Whenever they come to work, make a coffee and feel like pressing the big red button in the middle of their desk...
    "Our officers of cavalry have acquired a trick of galloping at everything. They never consider the situation, never think of manoeuvring before an enemy, and never keep back or provide a reserve."

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    "Jeszcze będzie przepięknie."

  10. #10
    First Lieutenant Cohnman5's Avatar
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    Thumbs up I am so veyr impressed--GREAT GAME BETA!

    I am overwhelmed by Collosal and your entire development team. You are eager to improve and listen carefully to the gaming community. I hope your new title goes PLATINUM! I can't wait to play the "real" game tomorrow. I salute you and your team. Great Job!
    Last edited by Cohnman5; 21-02-2011 at 17:07. Reason: spelling and typo corrections

  11. #11
    No possibility to upgrade bus/tram stops then ? :/

  12. #12
    Ill Growl of Talking Polar Mongoose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dozer View Post
    That left-hand-drive Routemaster hasn't stopped looking really really strange yet :-D

    Good luck CO!
    I was staring at it for ages trying to figure what was wrong with it.

    Been waiting for this, especially the vehicle spacing, and it doesn't disappoint. And it came in time for pre-order bonus dlc too!
    °Viva ArgentinAAR! - My Vicky 2 AAR (1836-1880)

  13. #13
    Duke of Abrantes vanadio's Avatar
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    CO make cities in motion not some game, but "the" game...

    You listen to what the community reports, the requets, bugs... To make this game a better and funny game.

    Thank you, for listen to us

    PS: I pre-ordered at GG, but i cant download the game tomorrow, so, i can download it 25th?

  14. #14
    Thanks to you all being a part of this amazing ride developing Cities in Motion! We will be listening your feedback in the future too

    vanadio: I'm sure you can download the game whenever you can

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Polar Mongoose View Post
    I was staring at it for ages trying to figure what was wrong with it.

    Been waiting for this, especially the vehicle spacing, and it doesn't disappoint. And it came in time for pre-order bonus dlc too!
    The door to enter at the front of the vehicle is missing. I think that's the strange thing. There is no reason for it to have a dent in the front when designed like this.

  16. #16
    First Lieutenant Madpainter's Avatar
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    TBH even if the game turns out to be a dissapointment (which it won't ) I will be watching C.O. very closely in future.
    Your attitude to customers is quite frankly awesome. I hope you have a very successful future.
    First I shouted at the screen.
    Then I shouted at the forum.
    Finally I calmly spoke to the forum and thus..... a conversation was born and knowledge was delivered unto me.

  17. #17
    That's an incredible situation where developers easily meet their audience. Big thanks!
    Game Rating from Stopgame (link to review) - "Amazingly" and "Our choice"

  18. #18
    Ill Growl of Talking Polar Mongoose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Romtos View Post
    The door to enter at the front of the vehicle is missing. I think that's the strange thing. There is no reason for it to have a dent in the front when designed like this.
    No, they really do (or did) look like that, with no door at the front. Its just that the model is a mirror image of the real thing to make it left hand drive.
    °Viva ArgentinAAR! - My Vicky 2 AAR (1836-1880)

  19. #19
    Will there be a patch in the future to create timetables for routes? This would be truly amazing as no other game has ever done this before!

    Also as someone who actually works at a transit agency planning and scheduling routes it'd be a great simulator for new routes!

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by ieko View Post
    Will there be a patch in the future to create timetables for routes? This would be truly amazing as no other game has ever done this before!

    Also as someone who actually works at a transit agency planning and scheduling routes it'd be a great simulator for new routes!
    Well, OpenTTD has had this for a few years now. And as said here, they have added a feature to make vehicles space themselves a bit. Sounds good to me

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