We are happy to announce the release of the Zero Vector public Beta! We have been working very hard over the last few months, programming and art-ing for long stretches with a wanton disregard for personal health! Anyone can download and play the Zero Vector beta, but if you want to participate you can email us the log.txt file, found in the working directory, when you finish playing. Also, if you run into an issue of any kind, you can press ‘Z’ in-game to record the issue in the log.
The Zero Vector Beta can be downloaded from this blog by navigating to the Zero Vector page under ‘Games’, or you can nab it from our GMC topic here.
We genuinely hope you enjoy playing Zero Vector as much we do making it! We will keep you posted with any new developments. On a side note, we have a real website in the works, which should be live within a few months.
We recently commissioned some very nice dialog portraits for Zero Vector. They will be featured in the upcoming Beta release, which is scheduled for late January.
They were created by Dennis Froehlich (http://jorsch.deviantart.com/), and they have all the bells and whistles – multiple emotions and a mouth open image for each character, for dialog animation!
Below are some select outtakes of Dr. Miles Drexer (with the diabolical side burns) and James Turin (the hero/avatar).
Overall the commission process was a wonderful experience and we plan on outsourcing larger illustrations later on down the road.
I will close with a sneak peak of the finished dialog box with all elements working together.
Almost two months have transpired following the events of SIEGE. Development has slowed considerably due to Jim’s absence and a heavy load of school work, but even so Zero Vector has come a long way from the public alpha (which is expired by now – apologies for the lack of a new alpha build). Some of the recent developments include revamped level design for all sectors, new and improved environmental puzzles, a near complete textual narrative, lots of new music and sound, and a nifty variable frame-rate feature to help keep a constant game speed on slower machines. There are of course a slew of bug fixes, interface changes, and various minor design tweaks that help bring the game together.
The only real hurdle that is pushing back a Zero Vector public beta is the final boss. The first couple ‘stages’ of the boss are complete, and the rest is (sort of) designed, but we are having a hard time creating an epic boss battle that matches the climactic intensity that the narrative lays down (Todd, our writer, has set the bar high!). Messing up the timing of a cut-scene or the pacing of the battle puts us in danger of ruining the entire endgame, and no one wants that!
Meanwhile, our team has been undergoing a strange sort of metamorphosis. Jim and I have been looking for permanent additions to Shattered Labs to prepare for our more ambitious future-projects, and following our brief spotlight at SIEGE there have been a few individuals who have offered their help, but only time will tell who sticks around. Lets just say we have team count between two to seven people, but no more than two are working on Zero Vector at any given time (one of them is me).
I will leave you all with some goodies. Good day.
The pink enemies move in tight circles and release 3 projectiles on death.
One of the many new puzzles that will be introduced with the Beta release
Sector 3, Boss 1. A swarm of enemies acting as a single sentient unit.
Zero Vector wins 2nd place.
Zero Vector was voted 2nd place in the SIEGE 2011 student showcase. You can view the rest of the results here:
“Engage,” one of my favorite tracks set to some random screens taken along the way.
Shattered Labs is go.
Here we will keep you updated with news surrounding the release of our current project:
Explore and conquer a molecular world in this nanoscale struggle for survival!
Humanity is on the verge of extinction. Desperate to find a way to maximize dwindling resources, genuis physicist and chemical engineer Dr. Miles Drexer has invented the Sapience Implementer, or SIm Unit – a nanoscale machine capable of duplicating human consciousness. Along with Chassis, designed to contain and support them, the SIm Units represented the final frontier for humanity, until the Virus came.
Combining the classic arcade-style shooting action of Geometry Wars with the puzzle-solving and exploration of The Legend of Zelda, Zero Vector follows the struggle of James Turin as he sheds his humanity to explore Chassis and conquer the nanomachines that are destroying it. With the fate of all mankind hanging in the balance, can Turin maintain his sanity long enough to defeat the Virus?
・ 15 enemy types and 7 unique bosses offer consistent and varied challenge
・ Solve original puzzles and fight your way through three levels of story-based adventure through 3-4 hours of gameplay
・ RPG-style narrative dealing with themes of identity, loss, and the cost of survival
・ Upgrade your SIm Unit as you see fit – choose Agility, Firepower, or Shields to increase your chances of victory
・ Increase your abilities with six special upgrades that allow for open-ended exploration of Chassis twisted passages