Co-Optimus: Why couch co-op only? On the consoles this kind of decision makes sense as folks can gather around a big TV to play, but PC gaming typically lends itself more towards online play. Was it a matter of balancing making the game and getting functional net code? If so, what makes net coding so tough?
Sampo: The simple answer is resources. Our team is very small: a lead programmer, a lead artist, design lead/project manager/supporting programmer, tester/level designer and an engine programmer. A total of 4 people working on the game and 1 on the engine and tools. We'd love to have online multiplayer as well, but that would have added at least six months and probably a lot more to development time which we didn't have.
Some say that online multiplayer development for fast-paced realtime action games is one of the toughest challenges in game development. From what we've experimented, we know it is hard and takes time. Online in top-down shooters is probably even harder than first person since you see everything all the time and everything needs to look smooth and be in sync. In FPS games each player has their own view and you can concentrate on the few things each player sees and get away with lots more glitches and issues.
Hopefully in the future we get to make an online multiplayer game but it was not possible with the current projects.
Co-Optimus: What’s next for the game? Any DLC or other content plans?
Sampo: Our next game out will be Xenoraid – a vertically scrolling space shooter with some cool ship management systems. The game also has some interesting core gameplay twists like “bank-and-shoot” and ”dodge-roll ship changing”. The store page is online already on Steam.
There’s local co-op in Xenoraid, too, so click it on your wishlists to get a notification when it launches!
The Xbox One and PS4 versions of Neon Chrome will launch in a few weeks as well. Mobile versions will need to wait some time as the game might be at least somewhat different on mobile due to on-screen controls, screen size, power, and various other things.
Neon Chrome DLC depends on sales so that remains to be seen. We'll keep updating the game though as we want to react to player feedback. So far we've created a couple of bigger balance updates already which are already out on Steam.
Last but not least, level editor and some other cool modding tools should be out for Neon Chrome on Steam soon!
We'd like to thank Sampo for taking the time to speak with us about Neon Chrome and 10ton Ltd. Neon Chrome is currently available via Steam for $14.99. It supports four player couch co-op for the entirety of the game's campaign.