Yesterday I asked what you would like me to write a blog post about and well, I could not select only one topic so I thought I’d take your questions and maybe answer a little more than you can on twitter. Here are some of the questions from yesterday.
Vasanth Kumar @gully_point – Our biggest Indian Supporter. Super passionate!
Q: Tell us about the online leagues in the game, and how it works?
A: We can’t just yet. It is the third of our main modes and will include collecting player cards to form a strong side against opponents mainly online.
Rick Lindeman @romanista– SWOS oracle, arranged the World Cup in SWOS last year.
Q: Release date. Platforms. Vita/ps4 bundle?
A: We can’t reveal the release date yet. Hopefully we will do that during Gamescom. The first platform will be PC, then iOS and Android. A Vita/PS4 bundle would be nice, but nothing we have been thinking about yet.
James N – @james_nott – Loves turtles and pools of water at football pitches. Q: Testing strategy?
A: Company X will do most of the testing before release. We are thinking about having an online stability demo released where you can try out online against a random opponent. If this happens we will announce it. For now the game will go straight to Early Access if nothing else is announced.
Dan – @islandpc – Computer guy with 12.5 Vine loops!
Q: Will you be able to save and export your team name edits, and if so can you import others? and for bonus points could it be cross platform?
A: Ideally we want an editing mode (player names and team names) in the first Early Access release. We will announce features as we get closer. If it’s not in the first release you will know and can make your decision based on that. I believe it will be in. An editing mode for us is one which you can share. Xbox is terrible with these kind of things like sharing files etc because of closed hardware. Other formats are easier and we know PES has an extensive editing community on PS4 and PC. We’d like something similar.
Cross platform is up to the platform holders. It doesn’t matter how awesome our skills are at the office when we code the game. If Microsoft and Sony does not allow it we can’t do nothing. It is a common misconception that most programming studios chose not to make cross platform games on their own. That is simply not true. Most people in tech want people to come together as much as possible.
Craig Dickens@craigboy21 – Chelsea fan who is enriching sports sole. Q: If we can create our own teams and League’s and Cups.
A: You will be able to edit names when the said edit mode comes into place. In that way you can create a team by editing the names of a current team and overwriting old ones’. There will be a DIY mode for creating competitions. Details are yet to be announced for DIY but online it will work for up to 8 players a competition.
Well that was some of the questions answered a bit more extensively. We’ll be back with more Sociable Questions shortly!
Jon Hare’s Sociable Soccer to kick off big time on Steam Early Access this Summer
The godfather of the football game returns to his roots with this fast-paced, arcade take of the beautiful game
London, United Kingdom – August 10th, 2017 – Legendary football game designer Jon Hare’s Tower Studios in partnership with Finnish studio Combo Breaker, today announced that Sociable Soccer, Hare’s latest fast-paced, arcade take on the beautiful game, will launch in summer 2017 on Steam Early Access with Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and mobile platforms to follow. To celebrate the announcement Tower Studios have released a new Steam Early Access trailer that can be viewed on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DtNlaUEkm0&hd=1
“Sociable Soccer is a super quick, adrenaline soaked football action game, an unholy alliance of Guardiola’s tiki taka and Klopp’s gegenpressing, where ultra sharp passing and shooting can easily be thwarted by a well timed slide tackle.. something like Rocket League in boots”, said Jon Hare, Designer and Director of Sociable Soccer. “After nearly two years in development we are excited to be launching soon on Steam Early Access. The game has a whole world of soccer already in place and online and offline matches are playing like a dream. As we sprint towards full commercial launch in late 2017 we invite gamers and football lovers to become part of our game changing, new sports franchise as we add new features, game modes and updates every few weeks”.
‘Godfather of football games’ Jon Hare, designed two of the biggest football franchises of the 20th century in Microprose Soccer and the genre defining Sensible World of Soccer, one of the 10 most influential video games of all time according to Stanford University. Faithful to his sports game pedigree Sociable Soccer features over 1,000 club and national teams from around the world and over 30,000 players, with 67 international football trophies to compete for and lighter friendly game modes including trademark custom teams. Beneath its sleek visual presentation lies a game of significant complexity with pinpoint controls and tactical depth. Easy to play and hard to master with single player, classic local multiplayer, online multiplayer and manager modes all supported. Sociable Soccer is a perfect blend of the instant playability of yesteryear with the power of modern technology.
About The Team
Sociable Soccer has been designed for modern technology from the ground up by a team of superstars from the European games development scene . “A designer can only be as good as the team around him” commented Jon “I waited almost 10 years until I found a team good enough to make my next football game with and the team behind Sociable Soccer is a combination of the very best of British design, Finnish engineering and French art”. Indeed the combined portfolio of Jon and the Combo Breaker team in their various roles is staggering: Sensible Soccer, Cannon Fodder, Max Payne, Alan Wake, Tomb Raider, Angry Birds, Bike Baron, Tower Bloxx, The Walking Dead. The list goes on and on with over 20 international #1 games between them.
Just a little summary of what has been going on. We have started to work on the gamescom build. A lot of things are coming together and you are starting to see the picture shaping as the puzzle becomes more complete. Do you remember that there was only three different hair and skin colors in Sensible? Well we got quite a lot more. We are also wrapping up work on a new stadium, player cards, inserting a new HUD and adding stuff to gameplay. This coming Monday we will make a new video and we got a press release coming up for Gamescom. Both will be released quite soon!
Is all this talk about fixing the core and working on tech issues with different platforms making you feel worried that we are forgetting gameplay?
Here’s an update on what gameplay related development we are doing next.
1. Throw ins.
One of the reasons you haven’t seen a longer game play clip is that we haven’t finished the throw ins. They haven’t had much priority but there will be several ways in which you can throw in the ball.
Players can do (these are under consideration still and some may not make it for the final game)
(I) a low throw with pass button
(II) a regular throw with kick or shoot button
(III) a chip throw with chip button
In addition there will be football rules and physical laws attached to the throw ins.
2. Ball hitting outside of net
The net needs to know what hit it. At the present you can actually shoot through the net on the outside. The only physical laws we’ve set here is that if the ball enters the goal (the correct way of course) it will bounce around in the net. Time to make it feel realistic on the other side too.
3. Goalkeeper code overhaul
The goalkeeper don’t know much about his surroundings and he needs to have more skills. At the moment he is really bad at catching curled/aftertouch shots. That’s why we are going to create his run speed, his decision making and his orientation skills so that he will become like a wall in the goal. No just kidding. He’ll be a clown. He’ll be average. We hope. We know what we are doing. Trust us.
That’s some of the points on our list. When any of these have been completed we’ll show you in a video.
So this week the full Combo-Breaker team met up in Helsinki. It was time for us to co-ordinate things and to exchange views on the game making progress we are in. The lead programmers and artists are very thorough when it comes to detail and that is mostly why you haven’t seen any screenshots or videos for a long time. There are some things that are shaping up extremely well.
1) Network play. Currently you can play the game on and against others on PC, IOS and Android. That means cross play. Yes you heard it right, as long as the platform holder allows it we will support it. If they do not we will be letting the tears roll. Lag will be minimal as long as you connect to a player within a reasonable distance. It will be less heavy than in games like FIFA and PES simply because we don’t have as many outcomes to calculate as in those games. We’ve already made a match making system too, we’ll go more into detail towards release.
2) The collect cards system and build your team mode. We’ll have about 31 000 players in our game. All with 7 stats (just like in SWOS) plus their preferred foot, magic huh? We’ll also have classic players that you can add to your team for certain period of time.
3) Gameplay – It’s all about gameplay right? What we have been testing is to put low passing on a button of its own. This decrease response time and makes the game even quicker. If you don’t like this you will have the option to play with a one-button-does-all like before. Also we added the chip/lob shot to the engine. You will be able to counter act it by telling your goalie to come out. We think this will give the gameplay even more depth.
The next thing we are looking at for gameplay is adding the skills. Right now all players are the same and when we get this in and right you will see a depth to gameplay that you could never dream off. The first skill we will start with is speed, since we are a fast paced game it makes most sense.
Oh I forgot to mention. Just as a side note. You will be able to play the VR version head to head online and offline and even against someone who do not have a VR version. Sweet huh?
So next up is our trip to Berlin on the 24-26th of April.
We haven’t posted for a while but we can assure you that we are hard at work with Sociable Soccer. The game will be out sometime during 2017. We’ve had to change the Q1 release because we were expecting some more staff to join us the last months of 2016 but that didn’t happen so naturally progress didn’t go as fast as we wanted. Most of the work the latest months have been about game/engine stability so there hasn’t been much to update about. The whole team are having a meeting in the middle of March in Helsinki and after that we hope to show you something new.
It’s almost Christmas and we are working away here at Combo-Breaker. We’ve been having our hands busy with local multiplayer so that you’ll be able to play PC vs Android and VR vs VR. Other cross platform play is a difficult task to handle, mainly because of the time that has to go into testing and the time it takes for the different platform providers to validate our updates. We’ll have more definite news about cross play as we get closer to our finished product.
We are also making good progress on the Online Multiplayer and we’ll update you on that soon. In-game we’ve added a new arena and for the menus in our modes we’ve made everything look continuous and flowing. We’d like to show you more pictures but since a lot is still work in progress we think it’s best not to. The splash screen above has now been reworked a couple of times and is now where we think it’s up to scratch for a modern arcade football game.
Work continues this week with improvements to our “build your team” mode. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask us! 🙂
/Your community manager and the team at Combo-Breaker.
This year’s last (announced) public screening is over and we got some new pics and a video for you guys. Hundreds of people turned up to play Sociable Soccer on three different formats. In total the show had about 16-17.000 visitors. We brought the latest build to the show and it was playable on PC, IOS and Android (GearVR). Unfortunately we had problems at the opening because of old drivers and some early visitors might have missed the opportunity to play the game – BIG SORRY FOR THAT.
Jon made a speech about his career on the first day and on the second day he played some songs on stage familiar to the fans. I arrived a bit late on the first day because I was in Luxembourg with my family to watch Sweden play. We won 1-0. Happy Happy despite the low score.
People were playing the game and enjoying it and the usual questions “When is the game out?” and “Where can I get this?” flowed over us constantly. The answer is that the game still doesn’t have an official release date. We’ve been saying it should be out Q1 2017 and we want that. But the delay with getting a publisher makes us think the game may be pushed forward. I will announce any changes as soon as we know.
As usual we also arranged a tournament to finish of the event with. The winner walked away with a signed Jon Hare Cannon Fodder copy for Mega Drive.
All in all big thanks to all our passionate fans and to the arrangers and Andy with team at Replay. Hope to see you all soon again!
Guys, it’s time for one of the events of the year. Sociable Soccer is coming to the theater of dreams, or at least close. We’ll be bringing the standard version on IOS, PC and Android but also the GearVR version so that you’ll be able to get a totally new football experience. Please come visit us Saturday and Sunday and tell all your friends about this. Me and Jon will be there to talk to you and answer all your questions and maybe even give you a game or two. We will have four machines to our disposal. On Sunday we will even have a tournament. WOW WOW WOW!