Zenith:Unknown development diary 3: There we go!


All I can say is fuck yeah! Finally things have worked themselves out. And I really mean they have worked themselves out. You might not get why am I so hyped about it because it might be the opposite for you, but in my life things just won’t work when there is resistance. When there is need to push past a barrier that costs extra effort. I know out of experience there is a reason this barrier is there, even if I don’t completely understand why. So it’s best to quit pushing and try to figure out what’s wrong. On the contrary, if somehow, and again, not necessarily consciously knowing how and why I manage to get on the right track, things will just work themselves out. It will all be laid in front of me this very instant and with no effort it will all start happening as it should.

In last development diary I was still bashing my head into a wall. Once I made the changes described there, it all started making sense. And when that happened, I was finally able to see а complete game concept unfolding. I dare to say in the time between these two development diaries I did more than I did in the last year and a half. That’s how things work out for me — it might take quite some time to figure out the path to follow, but as soon as I do it’s like tuning to another dimension where everything happens with no effort.

Result is the game is finally looking like a game.

I got D12 dice and crew tokens, the draft prototype is almost ready for printing and soon I will be able to even post a downloadable version of the game for community testing and feedback.

As a matter of fact, it didn’t go without few major changes again as well and here is how development progress looks at this time:

  • Communications sector has been replaced by Transport sector. The transport is now being operated from within the ship and is not a completely standalone entity as it was planned in the beginning.
  • Almost all sectors have had their states repurposed, some completely reimagined.
  • New sets of cards have been added. Initially there was just one set of cards — Chance. This set is now known as Event cards. They can trigger positive, negative, neutral-ish or chance based events. Set contains 26 cards and will quite probably expand further.
  • An event card can trigger minigame that requires Impact cards to be drawn. Impact cards have two subsets — positive and negative. Each subset contains 5 cards currently. Since there are only two event cards that trigger minigames, outcome can be quite random.
  • There is also a new set of Power cards. They are very special and there are just 4 map sectors that allow players to draw one. Unlike other cards, you get to keep the power card and use it when you decide. Power cards either amplify the effects of your turn or trigger unique events. At this point the set contains 9 cards.
  • New Quarantine bay has been added to supplement Recovery and Treatment bays and bring some additional spice to the gameplay with the addition of biohazard scenarios. It’s still debatable whether it will be part of Infirmary or Cryostasis, but that’s a design feature and won’t impact gameplay (greatly).
  • Ship sectors board draft is done, so is the starmap draft.
  • Ship operation and sector operation guides are almost complete.

Next development diary will actually feature real gameplay photos and show off some of the unique game specifics. Yay.


Zenith:Unknown
a proper sci-fi board game

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