Master of Orion III Dev Diary
9:32 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story
GameSpy has posted a very revealing look back at the development of Master of Orion III from QuickSilver's Rantz Hoseley. With the game very near to completion, the article almost reads like a postmortem of trials and mistakes made during development. He discusses their initial drive to make the game a complex "galaxy simulator, not a game," and the decision earlier this year to go back and put the fun back into it.
At the beginning of the process, we had about 65 - 80 UI screens depending on your defining criteria. As we head towards "Gold," MOO3 has around 15. Another big portion of the piece talks about their overexposure to the fans and how it hurt them. If you're curious about the game, be sure to head over and read through the rest of the article.
Master of Orion III Development Diary
The end result is a game that is much more focused and directed in terms of the player experience. To those who are concerned about "compromised vision," let me give you two examples that underscore MOO3 in the two incarnations. In the first incarnation, one of the programmers' sons came home for a weekend, and played Master of Orion III. This is a guy who is very smart and loves TBS games, and the MOO and Civ series. After playing it, he said to his father that it was completely overwhelming and that we had indeed did what we said we would, but that it really wasn't fun.
Cut forward to about three weeks or so ago when the external beta testers got their copies of the game and started putting it through its paces. Not one of them has said anything even slightly resembling the comment that this is a "dumbed-down" RTS game disguised as a TBS game, or anything of that sort. MOO3 is still very deep, and a serious TBS game, but now it's also comprehensible and fun. This assessment our beta testers seem to agree with.
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