Hey everyone! Here's the video update for Hello Neighbor Beta 3:
To quickly summarize the video update:
Beta 3 is out now in Early Alpha Access
Alpha 2 is free for everyone
Release date changed to December 8
100% our fault for poor planning of QA (we didn’t plan for enough of it)
Engine upgrade and move to release code caused a nightmare of stability issues as witnessed in previous betas
Decided to delay instead of cutting / splicing features or releasing a buggy game
I've discussed in the video of how we tried to push for an August 29th launch date without allocating enough time for QA, and that completely backfired. As soon as we moved to the release code with an engine update, everything went to hell - the pathfinding, collisions, AI, etc. This took time away from actually finishing the game, and we had to make the super difficult decision to delay the game.
"A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is bad forever" - Shigeru Miyamoto
This means we'll have more time to refine the design as well. Let’s talk in-depth about some of the design issues we’ve been working on that are present in Hello Neighbor Alpha 3. The main one being FEAR rooms.
First off, we removed FEAR FACTORY. The idea behind it was to teach players how to use a superthrow ability. NPCs would surround the player, give him an item, and then chase the item if the player throws it. Repeat 10 times and you’d learn you can hold down mouse2 for that. It’s neat in theory, but gameplay wise we spent a bit too much time on it. The artwork as well. So it’s a shame to cut it, but it’s just not fun enough. Players now have the superthrow ability by default.
Got a major rework. The goal of the level is to get 5 items into a grocery cart, and go past checkout. You need to get the same items as NPCs are gathering. If an NPC sees you, he will try to run at you and catch you. This is the lose condition.
The level used to play like this:
If you’re getting chased, stand still (not even move the mouse) for a second, and you become invisible
If you get caught, you’d respawn with the cart in the beginning of the level
Now the level is much more streamlined
Crouch and don’t move - you’re instantly invisible
Less NPCs spawn in the level
If you get caught, the cart stays where it was
Watchout for NPCs stealing something from it while it’s there
Checkout has lights that confirm how many items you have collected properly
Lowered the size of some items so they fit into the cart easier
There is a basement in beta 3. It’s one of the several basements from the final game. You absolutely need an umbrella here.
Remember the giant Neighbor from Pre-Alpha? He’s a boss in the game. In order to defeat him, the player must use all of the abilities and skills he learned from the main house. This revolves heavily around platforming around this surreal environment. We will be looking closely at how players do this.
Players now spawn in their own house. Good opportunity to hoard some items. You will notice the Neighbor's house got a couple of facelifts.
Intro to Beta 3 has been streamlined. RIP haunted door. It didn't make much sense to have a "here's how you throw a box through an open door" part in there, and the sequence of hiding in the drawer and getting caught created a negative association for new players. The game tells you to hide, and then the neighbor catches you. That sequence is completely gone.