Is Development shut down?


#1

Please forgive my lack of research, I got an email that looked like Riot games was stopping development (Funding) for StoneHearth? Is that the case? Will we see any further updates to this amazing game.

I bought in, like 4 years ago on Steam and have anxiously watched its development (every 6 months or so Downloading and trying new changes). There is so much you could do here (as other threads have eluded to).

Can anyone give me a simple breakdown of what is going on and where does StoneHearth go from here?

Thanks,

D,


#2

Yes, new features has stopped. We will only have support updates like bug fixes.
The game end up not being profitable, so Riot had to move on.

Though I recommend mods, there is a good variety already in steam workshop


#3

Thank you Bruno for your quick reply.

I’m very sorry to hear first to all those that worked so hard on this game. Second it is sad to see such amazing potential in a game put aside. StoneHearth could of checked so many boxes for gamers.

I wish the team all the best,


#4

They did put a lot of effort into making it the best platform possible for modders, so content wise we can still see more coming.
It is a nice game either way


#5

Was that stated explicitly?


#6

No. It is just an assumption. I did a small math about their funding and team size and it does not look good.


#7

@BrunoSupremo To me it feels like bad bussines decision for Radiant. Don’t tell me it’s not up to me to decide that… but it’s just my look at it… They could’ve done so much more with the game, and the story if they didn’t have Money Focused Megacompany watching, and most importantly shouting over they shoulder. :confused:


#8

@Thaly, Tthat is unforuntately one of the risks for indy developers that are crowdfunded. More often than not, their inexperience with game development leads to money issues. The devs definitely could’ve done a whole lot more with the game, and with hindsight knowledge they probably would have been able to accomplish more, possibly even without RIOT attached. Unfortunately for us, that’s not something we’ll see. :frowning:


#9

But could they have done so much more that it attracted enough new buyers to finance that development time? Even if they hadn’t been bought by Riot the game would still have to make a profit, or at least not loose them money. They are a company with employees and bills to pay after all, not passionate hobby developers. And considering how many promises they made in the kickstarter that they had to cut, it probably wouldn’t be received well by the players if they released 1.0 and then started working on paid expansion with kickstarter promises or new stuff.
They have admitted several times that they were very naive when launching the kickstarter and they have suffered for it. More experienced game developers surely would have been able to accomplish more, but also wouldn’t have aimed as high, or at least not done so in official kickstarter promises.


#10

Everyone tries to blame riot (or radiant being sold to them), but the reality is that without them the game would have stopped earlier.


#11

You’re probably right about that… I don’t really know… I knew the game before Radiant got sold to RIOT and actually found out about it being sold quite recently. Well… It’s still a sad that the game got cancelled. Here’s me hoping it will get some attention once again. :frowning:

Maybe. I always felt like the game was doing well. I know that many things they wanted to do didn’t work out. But it’s quite sad how people started to hate the game just because of things that Radiant didn’t add to the game. :confused:


#12

@Nachtrae :frowning:


#13

Of course Radiant had enough money apparently to launch a second game, so I’m not so sure it was lack of funds that led them to sell out to Riot.


#14

What I’ve heard them say about it is that those money came from an investor or something. No Stonehearth money went into the other game.
I’m also quite sure they’ve said that they already had an investor for Stonehearth before Riot bought them.
Engineers aren’t cheep.


#15

That’s a bit of a chicken and the egg thing, isn’t it? If Radiant didn’t start that second game, they wouldn’t have been noticed by Riot, and SH wouldn’t have developed as far as it did.

If I had to place blame anywhere, I would put it on the devs’ insistence that the building system had to look perfect. If I was in charge, I’d have hearthlings hammer the ground until the building was completed, without any dependency whatevers that made it so hard to make the system work properly. Then I’d make the gameplay enjoyable and fun, tie all of the game’s systems together, and use the remaining time to make everything look as nice as possible. As it is, we have a beautiful water simulation and a pretty good building simulation, with water and buildings having very little effect on gameplay. Functionally, caves are a good analogue for buildings, but with the town value and the “cramped spaces” debuff, Radiant forces you to make SOME buildings.

I don’t know how it came to be that we have all these systems with little impact on the game. If I had to guess, old decisions were grandfathered into new development phases. When it was time to put the building editor on hold, and focus on making the game fun, sunk cost fallacy took over instead, and resources were doubled towards a new building editor. Maybe. Maybe not, I wasn’t there.

I haven’t played very much SH in the last while, honestly. The way the game plays is almost identical to how it did 3-4 years ago; the biggest change probably being seasons, coming in the last month of development. Before that, it was the addition of combat. And then… just a very long stretch of some strange nothingness. The conversations feature feels like it does nothing but distract my hearthlings. I care about hearthling traits to the degree that I’ll randomly re-roll them until I get beneficial traits. There is nothing in Stonehearth tying you intimately to any individual hearthling, because part of the game directive was, “you must not micromanage”. How can I feel cozy and close to my hearthlings if I can’t spend time on them individually? Pick out their gear, customize their pet, name their codpiece? That is essential for a game that allows 30, maybe 40 hearthlings at good performance.

They knew from this January that SH will stop development in the summer. I danced around the forums, talking about how everything was gonna be alright, and when it suddenly wasn’t, I felt like an enormous dunce. I know why they didn’t say when they knew they’d stop, and I’m sure that if they feel anything, they feel bad about it. But I hope I’m allowed to feel bad, too.

Stonehearth is a nice ant farm with a building system. That’s what it was 4 years ago, and that’s what it will be 4 years in the future. I played it 4 years ago, and I’m sure I’ll play it in 4 years, as well. For now, I’m still salty over this whole thing. Freaking sucks, man.


#16

Radiant started their second game with the express purpose of attracting Riot and then getting that game closed down? Seems a little … far fetched.

Funnily enough, the intricate building was what attracted me enough to back StoneHearth in the first place. I’m quite sad that it seems to have been simplified and spoilt by having the ‘ghost layout’ blocks visible even when not in building mode.

Sadly, I am also diametrically opposed when it comes to the Hearthlings. I like to see their little quirks displayed, but I’m not going to waste (in my opinion) any time on customisation as I just want the little blighters to get on with what they’re supposed to be doing :slightly_smiling_face:

I gues this demonstrates the problem with crowdfunding, not everybody wants the same thing.

PS You shouldn’t feel like a dunce, but you could have recognised that there was at least a possibility that all would not end in sweetness and light.


#17

I wish I could have liked this comment more than just once.

This is true, and I will agree to this 100%. At the same time, (outside looking in) I personally don’t feel RIOT did enough in means of management. I feel like they could have brought someone experience in leadership in and directed development to be more than it is today. At the end of the day, they just bought it to slap their name on it, and a half baked project is exactly what was made, especially when the game is rewritten halfway through development and development basically stopped for half a year.

It is what it is, but I personally still blame them as they were the “parent” of the project and let it fall on its face to the public. Cutting its funding because of sales though would make sense from a business side of things though.

On the same side of that coin, they sold an idea that they didn’t deliver half of, and that’s not including everything said in the dev diaries, on this discourse, etc. If you were being told you’re buying a car, then are given an engine and frame with the statement that you and your friends can finish the rest (looking at ACE), how happy would you be?

You mean like so many other city builder games?

Must…leave…alone…


#18

No, not necessarily. I meant I would have focused on making a good city builder game before making SH exceptional. I wouldn’t start with an exceptional feature and keep making it better. Here, we could argue about whether SH is a good city-builder game or not, which I don’t think it is. I think it’s a great game, but making a city of any sort of size takes a very long time, and doesn’t actually serve a beneficial function in the game. These are the issues I would have addressed before putting manpower towards the construction code.

Sure, I recognized that possibility. Lots of people talked about that possibility on a regular basis, with convincing arguments, many of which I agreed with. My purpose was to convince both myself and others that there was something to hope for. The reason I felt like a dunce is because Radiant knew there was no hope, and let me keep talking. Can’t really blame them for that, I suppose, it’s just my own optimism. Once I finish licking my wounds, I’ll get back to modding with that same optimism.


#19

I backed more out of curiosity than anything. I knew it was risky but I really wanted to see if they could pull it off and bring something new to the genre. I think it’s a good first draft but the backend needs a complete and total overhaul with a proper engine and multi-threading. Lua was a great idea for a HLL. It plays well with C. Maybe use Lua Lanes to implement this? (No idea if this is a worthwhile but it has Lindas so it can’t be all that bad!) I am sooo not a programmer so what do I know. :wink:

That being said, my stuff builds just fine. I just recognize that the game needs a gentle touch and that there are things you can do and not do to increase the chances of things building correctly. I can build a pretty little village and fight monsters. I got years of entertainment and will continue to get more. I just can’t get upset about it.


#20

For a first product, Radiant was super ambitious with Stonehearth! I fully agree on it being a good first draft and despite the lacking features they made a product that I definitely enjoy (as someone who bought it after release, so I did know what I was getting). The (relative!) ease of modding is a huge plus in my eyes. It’s like a game with a sandbox build in that lets you make your own thingies and see them come to life!