Highlights from the Wargroove Ask Me Anything on Reddit
Wargroove released yesterday on the Switch and publisher Chucklefish held an ‘ask me anything‘ session on Reddit for fans to ask questions. Several of the game’s developers took part in answering questions including designers, artists, and programmers.
The game is a turn-based strategy game most similar to Nintendo’s own Advance Wars series. Fans of this genre have been eager for the release of Wargroove since it was announced for Nintendo Switch. It’s an excellent strategy title worth a look if you like strategy games at all.
One of the main focuses of the AMA was future updates and content for Wargroove. Several people asked about competitive play and updates in general.
Q: Are there any plans to add competitive features if there is demand for it?
A: We are tracking ELO at the moment and using it for quick play matchmaking, so we already have the tracking in place. We’re waiting to see how the online play evolves and whether or not a ranked mode would fit. We don’t want to divide the player base right away, but it’s on our maybe list.
Q: Just wondering if you guys have any plans to support the game down the line with your own map-pack creations?
A: We’re definitely interested in supporting Wargroove with updates, though for the time being we’re taking the feedback from all our players on board and seeing what people most want to see. This may come in the form of additional map content, but right now we want to stay flexible and do our best to improve the areas important to the most players.
Q: Are there any plans to help curate fan created maps?
A: Yep! You might have noticed that we have a “Featured” tab on the custom content browser – we plan to periodically review the user made maps and feature some of them there!
Other people were curious about some of the design decisions that went into making the game. Pet lovers will be happy to know that the dog units in the game aren’t killed when they are defeated in battle.
Q: Who made the decision to have the dogs run away as opposed to dying on the battlefield?
A: It was a team decision! A lot of the motivation for it came from the feedback that we had at conventions, with both players and press expressing sadness when they saw the dogs die. We agreed that none of us wanted to see dogs dying in the game, and just made them run away instead.
Q: Did you guys experiment with varying the factions up gameplay-wise before settling on all factions being equal?
A: We did a lot of experimenting and theory crafting! In the end we decided most of the variation coming from the commanders was a good idea and we have some ideas on how to expand that even further.
Q: What was the biggest programming hurdle you experienced and how did you overcome it?
A: The online aspects of the game were probably the biggest challenge. The things that we had to deal with included cross-network multiplayer requirements, hosting independent servers, security, content sharing, handling timers for realtime matches over an asynchronous infrastructure, controlling AI, and many more details! The work on all of this involved most of the programming team (there’s four of us) in some way or another.
Q: I’ve really been impressed by the game’s voice acting. Was there any particular philosophy or direction behind how that came about? What’s your favorite part of it?
A: I know a lot of people are asking for full voice acting, but I actually love that it’s just little soundbites that pop in now and then, it allowed us to up the production quality of a pixel art game without divorcing ourselves from the aesthetic.
Q: Were there any features from either Advance Wars or Fire Emblem games you wanted to try to emulate but couldn’t?
A: We have our own interpretation of the CO passives mechanic in Advance Wars. We didn’t have time to get it in though as it would have completely changed up the balance too late in development.
Q: What ideas did you guys have to scrap that didn’t make the game?
A: A pretty big one involved commanders having an aura that buffed their troops in various different ways, when their groove was at 100% charge. Meaning the player had to decide between keeping their aura or spending their groove.
Q: Were there any units that were later on scrapped due to difficulty to program/lack of time?
A: The assassin ¬_¬ he was going to be able to kill a commander in a single hit, but die instantly to any other unit.
Finally, Starbound fans asked a few questions about the game. The Floran race featured in Wargroove started in Starbound. Fans have loved the call back to Chucklefish’s other game, but fans want to know when is Starbound coming to Nintendo Switch?
Q: Is a port of Starbound for Nintendo Switch being worked on?
A: We’re looking into Starbound on switch, it’s a massive technical challenge so we can’t promise anything yet, but we want to do it!
Q: I’m curious, what lead to the inclusion of the Floran?
A: The Floran as a faction in the game came a little after the rest – we had need for a “green” faction and also wanted a non-human race. It just so happened that the Floran from Starbound kind of fit that role really well, as despite Starbound being a sci-fi setting.
The Floran are portrayed as fairly primitive and could easily fit a fantasy setting. This also led to the idea that Wargroove is set in the Starbound universe, which is acknowledged within Wargroove. It also meant Nuru could feature as a commander, as they were a character we were all pretty fond of in Starbound.
Some Wargroove fans are even asking about a sequel to the game, despite it just releasing yesterday. Chucklefish didn’t rule out the possibility of a sequel, but the team says they are focused on their upcoming game Witchbrook.
If Wargroove’s strategy-focused gameplay sounds appealing to you, you can pick it up on the Nintendo eShop for $19.99. I’ve only spent a couple hours with the game so far and it seems to have the deep strategy and planning you expect in late-game scenarios.
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Ashley lives in the Pacific Northwest and enjoys exploring new games on the Switch. She loves hardcore platformers, roguelikes, and most games described as "it's like Dark Souls but _____." She talks about games a lot and her cat a little.