[dropcap size=big]W[/dropcap]hy project creators decide to take months at a time off between updates is beyond me, but at least hearing from the development team from time to time helps to show that the game’s not dead in the water. It’s been six months since the god game Maia received an update, but it does look like a fair amount has been done during this period of dark silence. Just what have they been up to, though?
According to the update, they have a new studio ready and working on Maia has continued on pace. There have been some new hires, a business coordinator and some new development staff. Including an intern that’s been helping develop tools for the continuing work on the game. Financially, they’re still golden. In fact, it appears that they’ve been relatively frugal in expenses. While some games go way over budget or over time they’ve been following the principle of doing things “cheap and properly” at the expense of rushing the game out. Which, as I’ve noticed, isn’t usually a big issue with backers. I know that I’d rather have a great and complete game released a year late than one that’s cut corners and missing important features just to meet a deadline.
Financially, we are doing fine, even with all these fun new fixed overheads. If we never sold another unit we could run at full strength for another six months or at a stretch over a year. That said sales are not too shabby and as my vision starts to come together I think people are going to get really excited about the game again.
Okay, so I’m sure you’re wondering about the state of the game itself. Well, the update continues on with more company stuff, particularly with regards to shows and cons they’ve attended, but about half of the text has to do with the game itself. And based on the screenshots provided it looks spectacular. If you’re a fan of god games, that is. Maia‘s been on Steam Early Access for some time now and it’s garnered mixed reviews, but a couple new builds are on the way.
The main issues now lie in small annoyances for the player and a lack of a longer term game for advanced bases. Once you get research up and going you don’t have much of a defined challenge or purpose. Fire gutting your base, and protobirds stealing chickens is entertaining and challenging, but the lack of a large goal in a game after a few hours makes things get a little stale. (At this point a lot of the younger kids at Minecon just started to murder off their colonists one by one, but I’m hoping not all of you are closet psychopaths!)
Starting with version 0.49 there will be a bit more interaction with the world at large. And hopefully players won’t be bored with the changes to the point of committing mass genocide. Unless you’re really that deranged, but I won’t hold that against you. Version 0.50, with a lot more stuff to play around with, will hopefully be released for those enjoying Maia so far sometime in August.