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  • Them's Fightin' Herds

    Current Version: Early Access 13.1: 4.16.2019

Good news, Bad news, Stream news.

ManeSix

The Powers that Be
Mane6 Developer
Jan 25, 2016
500
1,801
The Hold
mane6.com
The Good News (everyone!)

The good news is: The game's pretty far along.

Mechanically, the game's pretty complete: Things work, things fight, things get knocked out. UI's pretty much done, pending a revision pass, and the stages are mostly there as well. The cardboard cutout shaped holes continue to be filled animation wise, and visual effects are now being added. Sounds are mostly in, music should be fully implemented shortly, and the missing pieces of the puzzle are falling into place: In short, game's almost done. You can see the progress in our worklogs at the Backers' Section of our forums, or on our monthly workstreams (more on that later).

The (Sorta) Bad News, mixed in with some good news.

...Now Here's the "bad" news: "Almost done" isn't "done" enough.

In our original plan, we'd be starting the Backers' Beta Mid March, and work our release date from there, with the Beta's duration depending on the volume and intensity of feebdack, and with our 1.0 date set a month-ish or so after, but as you can see, Mid march kind of just happened.

So why did beta not start yet...?

On one hand, some people who have worked on large creative projects will say that things often take longer than one would think. We expected this and gave ourselves extra time for our estimate, but still hit slightly under the mark. At this time, there are things that we feel need more work before they are ready.

On the other hand, a possibility we hadn't available before due to several reasons, working with union voice talents, opened up for us at the end of January. Pursuing that avenue means we get more and better options for the VO aspect of the game, but it also means we need to get the groundwork for that (administrative and legal paperwork) sorted out. SAG AFTRA (the Union we're dealing with) have been very accommodating with us these past couple of months as we go along getting it sorted, but the process involves some back and forth between parties, and also some lawyer checks here and there, all of which has taken more time than we anticipated we'd be using working on VO setup when we didn't have the union option open.

On the third hand, life happened. Those of you who've been following our streams know (and everyone else is now finding out) that one of our developers experienced some issues of the conflagration persuasion (read: house on fire), followed by a different flavour of combustion (read: computer on fire) right before last month's stream, and while no files were lost in these happenings, progress suffered a bit of a halt as time was spent getting everything back up to its regular uncombusted state.

All that considered, and with awareness that no plan survives contact with the enemy (time, in this case), we're changing strategies on the go.

The new plan is thus: We are going to be delaying the Backer's Beta for a bit, while we work backstage to tighten the screws and make sure everything is in top shape, as well as getting the missing stuff plugged in its sockets. We estimate that an extra month-ish or so should about do it.

That should put the Backer's beta in the mid-to-late April zone (or whereabouts. Might be earlier, might not), and the game's release at some point after, which brings up another thing to consider, and it's kind of a big one: We're not the only fighting game releasing in that time window, and while the major release in that time period (Injustice 2) will be in consoles and we will be in Windows-based PC (for starters), we feel that giving some breath room between their release and ours is probably a good idea. Don't want to get our toes stepped on, to be honest. We'd like to give the game the best launch opportunities possible: The more eyes we can get on the game, the more chances it'll perform well in sales, and thus, the higher the chances we can secure enough funding to continue working on major aspects of Them's Fightin' Herds after Goat DLC and Mac&Linux Ports are delivered, so we will have to time our release carefully. End of May is looking like the most likely candidate, and we'll be giving you guys a precise date as soon as we can on that front as well.

The Stream News.

Speaking of progress, it's about time for our monthly work stream to show you guys some stuff in motion. This time, we're scheduling it for Friday, March 24. Same time (3PM PT), same channel (twitch.tv/manesix). If you've got any questions, comments, doubts or whatnot, you can come in to the stream and have a talk with us. We'll be going through a general overview of the game progress and showing what's been new since last stream, as well as talking a bit about what's still needing to be finished and what the extra time will allow us to do.


tl;dr.

  • Game delayed by about one month (End of April>End of May) for extra polish time.
  • Game nearly done! Progress can be seen at the forums or the streams.
  • Backer's Beta happening mid to late April
  • Union Voice Talent a possibility. This is good.
  • Work Stream happening as usual. Timed for this Friday, March 24. In this link.
 

Heilos

Backers' Beta Tester
Backers' Beta Tester
I'm honestly happy you're giving this more time to cook. I'll take a delay 100% of the time over an "almost done game" if it means the beta and final product are that much better for it.

I want to think most people by this point should be understanding that delays like this happen. It's going to happen no matter how much you plan for it not to happen, especially working on a brand new IP and tons of new tools, techniques and challenges you haven't had to experience before with game development. Plus your whole team has been very open in showing progress step by step in streams/videos and showing off individual pieces of production like animation, music, programming and so on.

So please take your time with everything. I've been on this train since Fighting is Magic, I think I can wait a bit longer lol.
 

Firekirby

Star Warrior
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
228
251
23
Hotter than heck, FL
discord.gg
I'd like to think I speak for a vast majority of the users here when I say this: We have been waiting for about five years to have this entire project see the light of day. A few more months is nothing at this point. Just seeing you guys being so much more transparent in your development process is more than enough to show that you all are trying your best to put the time and effort in and get as much quality into the project as is reasonably possible. Honestly, I was expecting July at this point anyways, so hearing only a month more to go? The hype train is starting to reach critical mass, and I sure hope this gets the recognition it truly deserves come launch day.

Also, love to hear we'll be getting studio-quality VAs on board for the game. Only kinda disappointed that the tradition of pulling from the community is no longer happening, but at the same time, higher voice quality means better overall experience, so I'm not that disappointed. ;)
 

NeoTensai

Twitch Streamer, Amateur Shoutcaster...
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 11, 2016
303
278
26
Slovenia, Ljubljana
I secretly hoped that the game would come out around my birthday, just seemed so poetic for me.

We are all excited for the eventual release of the game. The ride to get to this point was awesome. Not only have I gotten a chance to "participate" in game development(it was more just watching than anything else), but it was actually a wish that came true: to see how a game is made. And with the forum poping up I became a part of an awesome community and made a few friends along the way.

We are behind you all the way Mane6. We can wait a bit longer for the game to be finished.
 

Nexus

Web of Connections
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
16
23
Watching the development of this game has been a dream come true. This is one of the most high quality, most reliable, most well-coordinated kickstarter games I've ever seen. I'm so happy I contributed to it. I'm so excited to play it. The fact that you guys are giving it more time to make it even better is wonderful news, and I'll support you all the way. You're awesome, Mane6.
 

Bradneko14

The Cat in the Box
Crowdfund Backer
Feb 5, 2016
2
1
Monterrey, NL,Mexico
Got a bit scared when I read the post's title, that "bad news" are not that bad, a month is nothing and I'm sure most people can wait. Pretty excited that the game is almost done! It's beem a long way since the first Fighting is Magic build, you can do it guys!
 
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Tsukaa

Backers' Beta Tester
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 4, 2016
8
2
Germany
tbh here i cant see any bad news giving the game release some more time and informing the backers is a good thing as long your financial reserves from the campaign are enough for that and you guys dont need to reach in your own pockets.
I mean in the end even a May or June release for Beta would be "fine" as long you guys think this time is needed and can be "paid" with the money reserves as long you are able and say in the end " yup we are proud of our product " its fine .
So keep up your good work and take the time you need and can afford to bring a product you seem fit to your visions in the end .
 

Muro

Fight me in Skullgirls
Crowdfund Backer
Feb 3, 2016
142
250
29
Poland
steamcommunity.com
An additional month? That's it, I'm out, where's the door.

Jests aside, not having to deal with a publisher pressuring you with unavoidable deadlines is a pretty valuable aspect of being an independent crowdfunded devteam. Make the best of it, take all the time you need - and deliver the thingy when it is indeed ready and satisfyingly polished.
 

Orcryst

Backers' Beta Tester
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
8
11
Do we have info on if there will be an NDA for streaming the beta yet?

*sorry if i sound like a squeaky wheel at this point, but as a streamer who has REALLY been looking forward to this release, i need to know*

simplified question, will streamers be able to broadcast beta footage?
 

gatorafan

HOLAS: (tm)
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
222
552
Ship02: Ur
nightarks.enjin.com
After last year's port shenanigans I've started to dislike WB games and while not directly related this news kinda add fuel to the fire.


But none of those feelings go towards you guys. Ever since the news of the fire I kinda expected this to happen and, all things considered, it feels like it's for the better. I hope this extra time helps you guys complete all the cool stuff you had in store for us, I remember hearing last stream that you were considering about cutting some small (near inconsequential) corners here and there but now a new windows has opened to manage to squeeze those bits in.


Also, I actually forgot the beta was supposed to happen this month, I've always just assumed it'd be one or two weeks before release, with said release date being unclear.
 

SmokeRulz

Where there is smoke, there is fire!
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
325
505
Nothing wrong with a delay, especially a mere month. We'll see how it works out, but nonetheless, this game deserves ALL of the polish, especially with how great you guys are at the little details. We've seen the WIP animations and idle poses for long enough, I'm eagerly awaiting when all that is done as hell. Also great to hear about some talented voice acting is part of the reason for that delay. It'll be nice to hear the girls bringing out the sass.

I'd like to think I speak for a vast majority of the users here when I say this: We have been waiting for about five years to have this entire project see the light of day. A few more months is nothing at this point. Just seeing you guys being so much more transparent in your development process is more than enough to show that you all are trying your best to put the time and effort in and get as much quality into the project as is reasonably possible.
Well said.
 

Nappy

Mane6 Dev
Mane6 Developer
Do we have info on if there will be an NDA for streaming the beta yet?

*sorry if i sound like a squeaky wheel at this point, but as a streamer who has REALLY been looking forward to this release, i need to know*

simplified question, will streamers be able to broadcast beta footage?
No worries! This is something that has been discussed a few times internally. Nothing at the moment is finalized, but it's likely we'll have a short bit of NDA time near the very beginning of the beta (a few days? a week? it really depends) to iron out any glaring issues before giving the go-ahead. We're all in this together, and making sure the first public impression of the beta is a game that actually functions properly would be ideal! We're all really excited to get this out there, just making sure everything's got a nice sheen on it first.
 

Crayv

Backers' Beta Tester
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
36
13
Been a while since I have checked up on here. Didn't even know there was a fire.

As for a delay, I was expecting there would be some delays so no worries. After all, how does that saying go? Something along the lines of: "You can delay a great games release, but a launching a unfinished game can never be undone."
 

Tox

Ms. Fortune is best pone
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 6, 2016
370
1,427
24
NSW, Australia
steamcommunity.com
This is getting weird! Soon the game will be finished! Following the production of this game has been such a habitual thing. It's going to be so unbelievably awesome to play this game in it's entirety.
 

notgreat

Backers' Beta Tester
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
10
13
The delay is totally reasonable considering the fire and everything.

Honestly, the thing I'm more worried about is the release date being too soon and/or the beta being too short. The streams have shown that the game is getting to a better and better state, but it's still missing a lot of the polish that a game like this really needs. Smaller games like this thrive on polished, quality content since they quite obviously can't compete in terms of quantity. Though, it might be that much is prepared and just not completed/fully integrated, I'm only going off of what I've seen, and let's not forget that how the game feels is so much more important than anything else, and that can't be determined at all without playing it.

In terms of gameplay, nothing beats the sheer amount of testing that an army of fans is able to do. However, while we're good at finding problems, we're horrible at finding solutions; and only having a month to figure out how to fix the problems that will almost inevitably arise seems dangerous. Particularly for this game, since (as far as I can tell) you're trying make a great game for both casuals and hardcore competitive players- that's a lot harder than focusing on one side or the other. Budgeting is definitely an issue though, and so I can totally get not wanting to delay more than necessary.

I could be all wrong though- I haven't played the game at all yet. Here's hoping that it turns out great!
 

D96

Michigan Wolverines Fanatic
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
110
72
Michigan
www.reddit.com
Awesome to hear that the game is so close to being done, a little more polish time is no big deal!

Also, it gives me an extra bit of time to hopefully get a computer that's not actually a potato.
 

Firekirby

Star Warrior
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
228
251
23
Hotter than heck, FL
discord.gg
Awesome to hear that the game is so close to being done, a little more polish time is no big deal!

Also, it gives me an extra bit of time to hopefully get a computer that's not actually a potato.
I could be wrong on this, but I seem to recall them discussing option settings that would allow the game to run on a toaster, so unless this has been made impossible as of late, (correct me if I'm wrong) I doubt you'll need the most cutting edge computer to be able to play. Again, to my knowledge/recollection. Might have some info mixed up.
 

TheWalrus

Active Member
Feb 17, 2016
33
57
We're not the only fighting game releasing in that time window, and while the major release in that time period (Injustice 2) will be in consoles and we will be in Windows-based PC (for starters), we feel that giving some breath room between their release and ours is probably a good idea. Don't want to get our toes stepped on, to be honest. We'd like to give the game the best launch opportunities possible: The more eyes we can get on the game, the more chances it'll perform well in sales, and thus, the higher the chances we can secure enough funding to continue working on major aspects of Them's Fightin' Herds after Goat DLC and Mac&Linux Ports are delivered, so we will have to time our release carefully. End of May is looking like the most likely candidate, and we'll be giving you guys a precise date as soon as we can on that front as well.
As additional bonus, you're now also avoiding overlap with the debut of a new season of Lawyer Friendly Equines in April. This will probably secure more prominence on the brony front.
 

Stunthead

Springbok when
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
306
793
New Zealand
Good news, bad news, cool news, rad news. An extra month means an extra stream, which means an extra recap. You guys will have to put up with me a little longer.

Really though, I doubt anybody would object to you guys taking an extra month, especially if it means you can release the game at a more optimal time. You've been great at telling us why things are taking as long as they are, which is something a lot of companies, even big ones, fail to do. You're champions, the lot of ya.

It's good to hear the story mode is coming along. Will that be excluded from the beta or will I have to dodge spoilers for a month?

Fœnum for life, baby.
We need to make sure we show this wiki some love when the game comes out. Successful things always have wikis.
 
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Someoneman

Crowdfund Backer
Crowdfund Backer
Feb 3, 2016
76
166
I was just thinking yesterday about how the game was supposed to be coming out sometime around now.

The streams have shown that the game is getting to a better and better state, but it's still missing a lot of the polish that a game like this really needs!
They did say that all gameplay-related stuff is now complete, so this presumably means they can focus 100% on polish for the next two months unless there's something extremely bad in the beta. I have faith that this will be enough time for them to make the game look and sound as great as it should.
 

sokolgs

TFH Streamer
Jan 4, 2017
84
310
21
Russia, Moscow city
I'll do my best to "get more eyes on the game" in my country. Best TFH group in VK - at your service!
Just started to translating this news in a bit shorter version.
Looks like i've got more work ahead now...
P.S. I painfully want to stream beta too)
 
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TwistedSheep

A sort-of-artist
Backers' Beta Tester
I can't wait! But yeah I can wait its a busy month for me anyhow I'm hype but the delay is understandable given what had happened, thought it might be longer than a month for that but guess nothing was lost gamewise. Appreciate being informed in time though and good luck with finishing off the game been a long thing for you all even before the fundraising.

So take a small sheep of good fortune to prevent further issues:Pom:
 
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CamTSB

死の匂いか?
Mane6 QA
Feb 2, 2016
430
475
28
Ontario, Canada
twitter.com
Perhaps you should extend into early-mid June, to both better avoid Injustice 2 and give yourselves even more beta time to work with?
See, the problem there is that we'd then run into the Tekken 7 FR release date, which is June 2nd if I'm not mistaken. For a genre that doesn't get a whole lot of releases with big names, we sure picked the most crowded patch of months to work with.
 
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BackwardCap

Internet Celebrity Extrordinaire
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 3, 2016
22
41
The longer it takes, the more time I'll have to design my lobby sprite. Win win.
 

NeoTensai

Twitch Streamer, Amateur Shoutcaster...
Backers' Beta Tester
Feb 11, 2016
303
278
26
Slovenia, Ljubljana
I'll do my best to "get more eyes on the game" in my country. Best TFH group in VK - at your service!
Just started to translating this news in a bit shorter version.
Looks like i've got more work ahead now...
P.S. I painfully want to stream beta too)
I have been doing that for our local FG since the forums went up, I think. Doing short stream recaps, explaining the games humble beginnings which I also added somewhere here on the forums (in english ofc) and did a character intro with their early iterations of how they would be feel and fight. And over the course of a year, 5 thread's and 23 reply's the TFH section of our local Pretep.si forum got around 5k hits. Which I will say in my humble opinion quite a good response considering our small community.

Now to not derail the thread too much

Really looking forward to the stream and more Lindsay time :p. And when all the waiting is over I will probably "crash" like the pink one in the where she had to keep "someone" a secret from the purple book horse
 
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