Squads and Glory

Guts and Glory Boss - King TigerSquads are coming to Guts and Glory and with them, the squad boss!

Each day, players perform roll call and CHECK IN.  The more players that do so, the greater the daily squad payout to each player is (paid out at midnight).

Squad Leaders can also summon a SQUAD BOSS, selecting from multiple challenge levels.  There’s a new resource available to each squad member (POWER).  This is used when fighting the boss and each successful attack wins experience and cash.  If the boss is defeated within the time limit, squad members each receive a multiplier on their accumulated tally as a victory bonus depending upon how much of the squad boss damage they caused.

Here’s a sneak peek of one of the bosses (we’ll be starting with 3 and later adding more!)

Zombie Moon Updates

Previously we rebalanced point drops and added silver, gold and platinum drops however the promised examination for point use for energy and supplies have remained an outstanding task.  We’re applying a change to point refill costs for supplies and energy where it is 20% more efficient.  We try very hard to ensure such changes are always fair, so this is being honoured for players who have previously spent points and will show as a surplus.

The big update for the client to use our newer, more powerful engine has completed and we now await Apple’s approval.  Since this unlocks two new game features (quests and tasks) we are delaying the rollout to Android and Amazon to try to align availability approximately with the release on Apple’s App Store.  Once everyone has access to the new game features, we plan to be bringing across a popular option from Guts and Glory – an option to earn supplies and energy refills via video watching (currently, we can offer this on Android only but hope to extend this to the other platforms also).

We’re continuing to work really hard on the game improvements and hope you enjoy them!

2165 for 6 years!

SBAS2.012165: Spy Battle has reached 6 years!

By now, you must have gathered that there is something special going on there – how can it be 2165 for six years?  Well spies, get to it!  Find the secret.

A bunch of new and fun enhancements are live today – happy anniversaries spies!

 

 

ZM Custom Search

ZM Advanced Search Filter
ZM Advanced Search Filter

Now that 3.x is live on all our supported platforms (including Blackberry via the Amazon store), we’re able to again resume further game enhancements.  Some of those new elements we’ve been designing for a while are are now approaching a release point. For example, the existing notification system which uses a third party service just isn’t meeting our needs. A completely new replacement is nearly ready, using only code that we control.

Here’s another such item – a custom search.  This presents a few challenges adding into an established mobile game, such as efficient display and speed of use. We’ve simplified this so that a new button to the left of the existing search is added – tapping it brings up the screen you see here. The values in this screen are “remembered” each time and usability is solid. We feel this will be especially useful for players during squad wars.

Next up:  refill cost reductions on supplies and energy.  Earlier, we reworked how the supply drops functioned and added in the silver, gold and platinum box feature. As part of the overall update, it has been intended to revisit and adjust the supplies and energy point use.

This has been in active development and testing and represents a 20% bonus when replenishing supplies or energy.  The real trick has been ensuring that any and all prior point uses for these will be retroactively given.  That’s only fair – it’s getting close to when we can activate it 🙂

ZM 3.0.22 Submitted to Apple

ZM 3.0 Gold
ZM 3.0 Gold

It has been a really tough run but we’ve hurdled all the barriers and are pleased to announce that ZM 3.0.22 is now awaiting review on Apple’s App Store.

It’s not the end of updates – oh no!  For one, some of the optimizations on build size caused serious problems with the libraries necessary to operate.   Which means we could either keep a small, extremely fast but broken app or a frustratingly much larger app and push for what speed boosts we could safely keep in.  That’s not much of a choice so we’ve had to (for now) go with a bigger app.

We’re already pursuing options to improve that (indeed, most of the incompatibilities are already resolved).  And notifications were a problem due to system changes and had to be removed in this first release while we pursue superior options.

Plus – due to the aforementioned issues with some of the libraries, we had to release the item rotation visuals (but not the static images) at very low resolution due to the sheer size – otherwise we’d be way over acceptable app size.

The most important part for us is that from here we can keep supporting everyone and just keep improving things (like the zoom-in “big chat” option which is in the works) – it’s only a matter of time before version 2.x just stops working with a forthcoming Android, Amazon or iOS update.  But we’ve dodged that bullet and away we go.

So – fingers crossed – the app should be reviewed within 7 days or so and hopefully everything is a go.  It’s a little hard to say as it’s a completely new app if you recall, there’s no overlap with the old 2.x code.  EVERYTHING is new and redone.  So there’s a lot of things we have to get just right.  Here’s hoping…!

Zombie Moon 3.0 Live!

Zombie Moon 3.0 is going live. Finally! It’s been a big effort and we’ll be carefully watching and offering support for the inevitable small issues that will surface on specific environments.

Over the next 24 hours ZM 3.0 will become available as an upgrade / install for all players using Google Play.  We’re already working on the iOS version (there are still some issues being resolved) but it appears this will pass our checks and tests for Release Candidate within the next two days.

A 3.1 containing some further enhancements and items we want to offer (achievements, improved new player introduction) is already in plan and to begin immediately following the successful Apple Store submission.

 

zm3_posterreduced

So we bid goodbye to the technology and code used for version 1.0 and 2.0 – it did well, got us far but with the technology abandoned by the providers it had hit the limit of what we could do to support people.  That left us with two options:

1.  give up – never provide any support or updates

2.  start all over and make a copy / clone using totally different technology.

Option 2 was what we picked.

Committing to a complete copy/clone of Zombie Moon in totally different technology was pretty scary to take on but we did and we’re pleased to see it go live.  Backward compatibility is pretty solid, there’s still more we’ll do as time goes on but the nice part is we can actually DO more and continue to support the community.

So now we breathe a huge sigh of relief that the fruits of that labour are out there and proven as viable.  iOS version should be ready in the next 2 days for submission (and of course then subject to Apple’s approval process for when it would actually become available).

Following, we’ll see if we can resolve why the Amazon Kindle simply will not co-operate with the new code systems as we proceed with the 3.1 enhancement path.

Cheers!

ZM 3.0 Update: S4 Blocked

Squad testing for ZM 3.0
Squad testing for ZM 3.0

ZM 3.0 work continues.  We are in active Beta at this time.  There have been a lot of 3rd party blocks, for example having Apple’s development system offline for the past couple of days didn’t exactly help things along.  However, hurray – they are back online and we can continue our work there.

Support for as many devices as possible is holding us up – support for the Samsung S4 for example is proving particularly problematic.

Edge case tests and performance checks continue very nicely.

It’s easy to become frustrated at all the barriers and bottlenecks we encounter but we have surpassed each and every one and ZM 3.0 is really looking great!

Missions in ZM 3.0

missionScreen_2Missions with combats now show the combat results “in-list”.  There’s some formatting issues which are worked on (see the screenshot).  The “EARNS, REQUIRES, PROGRESS” headers are removed.  This lets us increase the visibility of the display and makes for easier reading and we can increase the Supplies icon and number required.

Similarly, the XP display is being replaced with a simpler “amount remaining” rather than the current convention (this is not yet in the official test build).

We should be able to post some further screenshots in the next day or so showing all the above.

Achievements (which are Amazon only in 3.0, all platforms in 3.1+) are being finalized and squad management also looks tight.  We’re otherwise down to just performing system checks and multi-resolution tests so there’s a potential app store submission in the next day or so following a clean test sweep.

(Of course, Mr. Murphy’s laws can always apply…)  That said, 3.0 release is certainly very soon.

Our roll-out plan:

1.  Google (Android)

2.  Apple (iOS)

3.  Amazon (and Blackberry via Amazon)

Auto Ally option in ZM 3.0

Zombie Moon 3.0 is nearing completion and we are targeting next week for submission to the three app stores.  That’s pretty exciting!  alliesScreenshot

One enhancement players may find handy is an option to auto-accept ally requests (toggled in the SETTINGS area).  By default, this is OFF for existing players but will start as ON (auto-accept) for new players registering with Zombie Moon 3.0.  Existing players can of course upgrade to ZM 3.0 and change their setting (opting in) when ZM 3.0 goes live in the coming weeks.

 

 

ZM 3.0 Progress Update

ZM 3.0 Item DetailsItems in Zombie Moon 3.0 are shown in three dimensions.  Yep – all of them have full 3-D renders and are beautifully illustrated!  This means we can show all sides of the item when someone selects the detail view – and you can now [DONATE] or [SELL] the items directly from the details view.

A screenshot may help make that clearer.

Even the lowly Command Knife looks great!

Since a whole list of rotating items could quickly become annoying, this effect is not used within the Inventory list itself – only in the detail view and when the item is found within a Supply Drop.

ZM 3.0 : Attack Screen

Combat Screen UZMAs you’ve already seen, the new attack search is significantly improved with Zombie Moon 3.0.

Combat results are now displayed within the attack list (in the Zombie Moon 2.x and earlier, the results showed in a popup screen).

Here’s a screenshot of the new functionality!

While you cannot see it in a still image, the VICTORY or DEFEAT indicator also has a stylish emerge animation.

Overall, we feel this is a significant improvement and initial feedback from fans we’ve shown it to is very positive.

 

 

 

In case you’ve forgotten (or missed it) these screen shots were released earlier showing the new home screen and attack search progress (note:  the final version will be similar to but further improved from what is shown here).

HomePageUZMAttack_List_UZMScreenshots from iPad Mini