Is the 2021 Roadmap realistic?

4 ambers7 replies137 views
Harald started 5/17/21 5:00 am
Artyfacts replied 6/1/2021 5:22 am

We're nearly halfway through the year and Update 1 is still not out. Assuming the 4 updates they have planned for 2021 are roughly equal size the prospect of getting all 4 in 2021 seems a little unrealistic to me. 2 at most seems more likely.

But what does the community think?

Now obviously this is blind speculation. No one except the devs really knows whats going on or why, and in the end I'm sure we will all enjoy whatever they manage to get out. This isn't about being critical or overly skeptic. But perhaps a little about tempering my own expectations and looking at it realistically. In the end I'd rather be pleasantly surprised then disappointed and 4 updates before the year ends just seems too much.
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7 replies

05/30/2021 12:19 pm
Level 5 : Apprentice Builder
MythicBuilds avatar
I don't wanna be that guy, but with the way things are going, we'll be lucky to get 2 updates by the end of the year. That being said, if the quality is up to par I don't mind them taking their time.
06/01/2021 5:22 am
Level 17 : Journeyman Viking
Artyfacts avatar
I'm a tad disappointed that they haven't hired any additional help yet, but hey they bought a mascot horse! If i was the manager after selling 5mil copies it would be a top priority to deliver and hire more people to do the trivial programming.. As of now I don't see how they can keep the roadmap in the set timeframe. I know they have problems with covid restrictions and so on, but still shouldn't be that big of a deal to find a workspace that lives up to current regulations. We'll see but I'm doubtful..
05/24/2021 7:11 pm
Level 1 : New Viking
Peter Thorfinn
Peter Thorfinn avatar
They might not get things out as quickly as they want, but I do think we will see all of the updates, just maybe in 2022.

I also am not a programmer, nor do I work in the industry. But do they work on multiple updates at once? Like, is update two not even started until one is finished?
05/26/2021 12:52 pm
Level 17 : Journeyman Viking
Cyprezz avatar
They can work on multiple updates at once but probably prioritize wrapping up a particular update before others. It depends on what skills are needed for each update and what one person needs from another before progressing.
05/17/2021 12:57 pmhistory
Level 17 : Journeyman Viking
Cyprezz avatar
Just started writing and didn't stop....

I think they are very motivated to pull it off or come very close to all four updates. The explosive success of the Valheim comes with additional expectations as well as business responsibilities & pressures that can be challenging to adjust to at first. I think the success has pros and cons in the short term but in the long term it should be overwhelmingly positive for the future of the Valheim and Iron Gate Studios. Assuming they are settling into the success, I think they'll have a lot of fun producing updates knowing the release of each is going to be played by millions of fans.

Right now, we are not even sure what Iron Gate considers an update worth titling or how far along they already were in these updates prior to the early release.

I'll speculate about the updates for fun.

Hearth & Home Update #1 | Speculation
I think the core systems of Hearth and Home are already in the game but it's possible that they have all new systems / crafting materials to figure out and balance which would take more time to develop & test. If new systems are limited, adding new building objects & furniture is probably relatively easy & fun compared to when they were figuring everything out for the first time.

New content for this update could be mainly about having a good & distinct idea for a new object or building part. Then it's modeling, texturing and ultimately making sure it makes enough sense to take up a slot. Depending on the object, they may also need to stress or exploit test. My guess is that the majority of the update is modeling, texturing and a smaller portion is new code / systems which means the code developer is free to work on other updates. I would be pleasantly surprised if we see all new building / interaction mechanics coming with Hearth & Home update but think this update could rely more heavily on the model/texture artist.

Cult of the Wolf Update #2 | Speculation
I'm not sure what this is but it sure sounds fun / dangerous. My guess is it's a combination of new camps/destinations, humaniods? living or ancient history plus lore and my hope is that our interactions with tamed wolves is somehow impacted. Without knowing what the update actually is, it's hard to gauge what type of work (Coding, Modeling, Texturing, Sounds, etc.) is required to accomplish it. I think this one will require talents from the entire team. Adds to existing Mountain / Black Forest Biomes.

Ships and the Sea Update #3 => Saga Worthy Seas, even more ships | Speculation
For some reason this one is most interesting to me. I think it's because I love the sailing mechanics in the game already and don't know what other ships we even need and for what reasons. Maybe their will be enemy ships / ocean dwellers. Either way, I think it's exciting for the number of unknown directions they could take it from more water mobs, island destinations?, deep sea fishing, reasons to swim or maybe dive (treasure), weather effects like cyclones? Ultimately, the update could be small or large and be an update that gets released this year.

Voyage to the Mistlands Update #4
I'd speculate that out of the 4 updates, this one has a solid plan and probably already has content that is being tested but has many parts that must all come together. It's the most important to get "right" the first time in terms of being distinct, complete and a balanced logical progression to the game. I'm very curious at how they will add more Biomes and what each will bring. I suspect this update is their personal goal for the year and hope they accomplish it!

If Odin wills it
My feel is that these are less about goals this year and more about when they find the time and will to squeeze these wish list items between the other titled updates this year or the next. I think when they are added is probably more dependent on whether the other updates steer them into these areas or even as "breaks" from working on the other updates. For example, Moon Phases... I can see that tying into Cult of the Wolf. Expanded Trader inventory with the Sea / Ship update + random fun ideas that the team has for "mini-games" and quality of life enhancements.

All in all, I think they know what they are doing and have every intention of releasing as many update(s) as they can provided it meets their own & community expectations and quality standards. I really like that they went back and revised the Troll and two Bosses. It's less about whether they needed a revision and more about what that says about their development process and personal standards. I like it.

Road maps can be ambitious to motivate themselves as much as hype the community and development usually does take more time than estimates. Not everything goes to plan and priorities change all the time.
05/17/2021 5:53 pm
Level 1 : New Explorer
Harald avatar
"Just started writing and didn't stop...."

Speculating about Valheim also has that effect on me :)

I think your thoughts about the sudden success is right. A mixed challenge in the short term and hopefully something wonderful in the long term. I do think its worth noting though that other indie studios have also been in this situation before and not all of them have exactly lived up to expectations. That sudden success, for Valheim thats 6 million copies sold in early access, seems to be a real test of a studios integrity.. I am very hopeful for them tho because i think their success prove they only really need to keep doing what they already are doing. The foundation is solid so to speak.

I really wish I had given the source for that roadmap image because it actually gives a bit more detail about the updates. I got it from the Fandom wikia here which in turn leads to both this pcgamer article and this Steam community update. The Steam update seems to be the origin of the image which means its all the way back from the 2nd of February when early access was released. The pcgamer article has some very interesting details and is for sure worth a read. And for the most part they support your speculations. :)

Re "Hearth and Home": Henrik Törnqvist confirms in the article that new building pieces are coming and I absolutely love that. Considering how much have already been done with so relatively few pieces even just 3-4 more would open a new world of possibilities.

Re "Cult of the Wolf": It does sound dangerous! And with the devs not confirming much other then "Cult of the Wolf will be an update that focuses on exploration and combat with hopefully some some new fun and different encounters for the players" I can only join you in hoping it adds more lore and "life" to existing biomes so to speak. I don't know if CotW will go this far, but I hope that in time they will add more personality and behavior to the various enemies and wild life. Seeing trolls interact for example would be hilarious and would probably lead to some fun encounters.

Re "Ships and the Sea": Their intention seems to be to populate the Ocean biome more which I can only welcome. I absolutely agree that sailing is great and for me its particularly sailing down the small rivers that just feels awesome. As for more ships the point seems to be more customizing existing ships then adding new ones which imo is a good thing. There's a certain danger of just adding stuff because they can rather then because its needed. With the content available right now I feel I have the right amount of ships.

Re "Mistlands": You seem to be spot on. ""So it will be new enemies, new items, a new boss, new resources, everything, and that's what we have planned for this year."

I must admit that knowing the image is from February and reading especially the last line in the interview: "We're five people, by the way, so we have quite a lot to do. But yeah, as soon as we feel ready, we will begin working on the updates outlined in the roadmap" makes me think even more that they overestimated how fast they could get stuff done. Or was completely floored but suddenly having millions of bug testers. Or perhaps as you say the road map was meant more as motivation and goals then hard set deadlines. But that's not really a great practice though if that's the case. They make a clear distinction between stuff they intend to do and stuff they might do, so it seems fair to assume the stuff not in the "might do" category is coming. And since they provide the deadline themselves, also within that. I'm willing to cut them a lot of slack though and just cross my fingers and hope for the best. Their world is probably just about upside-down right about now :)
05/19/2021 9:51 pm
Level 17 : Journeyman Viking
Cyprezz avatar
I have faith in Iron Gate. It's a small team but everything they've created has thought, design and reason behind it that works separately and comes together to create a world that you want to spend time in. It is not easy to do unless the people behind it have natural talent. It's not really something you can teach and it's not something a person can posses and just drop. Valheim is special and so are the devs. I would be shocked if they don't continue to show the world what gaming is about.


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