Block N Load: Tony Replaces Eliza in Rotation + a Dev Report!

By Michelle-Louise Janion, 5 months ago
Block N Load screenshot

First things first - we’re moving Eliza out of rotation so she can restock her supply of noxious gases and bringing in Tony to take her place on the back line. Tony joins Kreepy and Sarge this week in the free to play rotation slots.

Dev progress report

May is full of national holidays around Block N Load land, so the team is in and out this month working on a variety of things for our next updates. If you have visited the Player Test Realm subforum here on Steam, you’ll see that we’re working through some more balance changes for some of our heroes. Get on over there if you want a peek or just want your opinions heard.

As you will have read in our update last week, we want to get some more content in the shop for you to buy. Skins and heroes have the highest development impact since there are more team members involved in this, so producing these takes a little longer than some other features. Currently we’ve got a number of ideas waiting for a concept artist to work through. Once we’ve got concepts to work from, we’ll get the artists, animators and modellers working.

Another item on our roadmap is more events like last weekend’s Double XP weekend. Did you play and earn your double XP? Is it enough to get you back playing more often? Let us know as we’ll be experimenting with various ways to get players back in the game.

Let’s recap this year’s roadmap as it looks this week:

- Separating Casual and Ranked - Done
- Block Rebalance Pass 1 - Done
- Progression Overhaul - Done
- Hero Balance Passes – On-going alongside development work
- New Tutorial/Hero Tutorials - In progress
- More sales and short term events
> Bundle Support - In Progress
> Double XP weekends - One down, more to plan!
> Free Hero weekends - Scheduled (but it’s a secret)
> Flash sales - Scheduled
- More cosmetic content - In Progress
- Performance, Bug and Quality of Life fixes (including matchmaking improvements) - this is always on-going

As for our feature development work, we’ve got a general order of attack (which could change as a result of other dependencies):

- Squad finder – A way to find other players looking to join a squad before entering the queue to help find people to group up with before starting the match.
- Improved map voting
- Seasonal (and other criteria) Ranked leader boards
- Ranked promotion/demotion systems
- Custom game improvements - Late joining, additional custom game options, etc
- In-game communication improvements - Map ping system
- Clan System - Persistent clans or clan identification

Asia and Oceania server merge

Sadly, neither the Oceania nor the Asia regions are proving particularly viable from a user base point of view and leaving both open simply causes confusion for new players who are unable to find matches on either. Rather than shut both down, we plan to “merge” them. In real terms, there are no regional data centres geographically located that are good for both Asia and Oceania, but by calling the region server “Asia-Pacific” we hope to encourage players from that side of the globe to play together. Since many players already choose the North American region as an alternative, we believe the experience won't be any worse at least.

On the May 24th, only one server - Asia-Pacific - will be available in the eastern hemisphere.

Ranked beta

This coming weekend (May 13th to May 15th), ranked mode moves to solo queue only with the level requirement raised to 30. We’ll be looking for your experiences with ranked matchmaking as solo players as we work on getting the settings for Ranked to be the best possible.
Michelle-Louise Janion
I tend to favour the puzzle, RPG, action-adventure and strategy genres. My particular favourites over the years have been Final Fantasy IX, Metal Gear Solid, Civilisation V and The Last of Us. I'm also a sucker a series: Darksiders, Assassin's Creed, Tomb Raider. I am a bit of a lone gamer as I tend to steer clear of PvP, and only play multiplayer with close friends.