Update about the coming changes of Computer Tycoon!

This is a cross-post from IndieDB!

Hi guys,

I’ve posted my last announcement a month ago, so it is really time to talk again! Unfortunately (as you can see), I absolutely failed in my original estimates about when I can give you my very next update. I’m really sorry about that, and I just really hope that the coming things will pay off for this as well.

I’m being late because how closely related are my systems in the game. For example, I’ve already added noise and heat. Heat is generated by hardware elements, while coolers can reduce it. And yeah… coolers often generate noise. But just imagine how many screens must be modified because of these two things? All of the lists, the hardware screens, the computer screens, research screens etc. And of course, techs are touched and the AI algorithms as well.
So, I just can’t modify one of them and release it, I have to modify everything and put it out together.

And these are two smaller changes. The research three, the new research system, the new design system is much bigger than that. But I truly believe that with the modifications you will get a much more interesting and more detailed game core – so it does worth it.

I’ve learned from it. I won’t promise new dates, haha! But I really wanna ensure you, that I’m still around and I’m working on Computer Tycoon in full-time. Okay… at least when I’m not moving to a new flat and I don’t miss even my internet connection. In the last week I didn’t have internet… guys it feels really bad not being able to communicate with ya!

I think most of you are interested in the visual things right now because everything else is laid out in the game’s roadmap (feel free to check it out again) here:

The Game’s Roadmap

So here are some pics for you! These are not in the game yet, these are only the assets that I and my friend are creating. Lately, he works a lot on Computer Tycoon. His name is Ede László, he made a lot of illustrations about the hardware elements of the game (follow him here: @ede_laszlo[www.instagram.com]).

But here are the pics, they talk instead of me…

So maybe as you remember, you start here in the garage:

Then later you will move to a normal office as you create your first financially successful computers:

That will be the moment when I will open up you the world map as well… and you will be able to hire some more managers.

And the office will improve by time… as you would expect. But you will end up being here:

Hey, I love sci-fi, how about you? 🙂

The guys you can hire are really not a focus of mine right now, it is much more a chill out activity of mine, but here is some more work in progress:

Maybe you’d like to see your computers in your offices, right? Well, you will (just as you can see it in the second pic of offices), but here they are:

I think these are some of the more interesting pics I can show you (meanwhile I don’t wanna show everything of course, but you can see some more offices in my last post). Remember that my main focus is still the design and feature expansion of the game, but showing the new research list (that is just basically longer, has more content – and actually is not final) seems to be boring and uninspirational for now.

The game sold around 8500 copies in its first 6 months. That puts the game into the 1% of indie games on Steam with similar or better results, that is awesome, thank you, guys! Although still, I would highly count on you in spreading the game. Please mention it on your fav. forums and social media sites, because that means a lot for a solo indie dev like myself.

Feel free to text me on the steam forums or on Twitter! Have a very nice day, and love your computers guys!

Your friend,
Andris

Computer Tycoon’s GUI didn’t have a good start

This article was cross-posted from IndieDB!

Hi guys,

In this article, I’d like to talk about the challenges of Computer Tycoon’s GUI. Computer Tycoon is the first game about Computer Evolution. It is a strategy and management game hybrid in which you see a lot of data. Showing a lot on different sized screens while having a unique style wasn’t easy to plan out.

I didn’t want to create a traditional GUI with rectangular screens. The Computer Designs of 70’s were really interesting. Some like them, some don’t, but they are definitely special and have a strong character. Computer Tycoon starts in this era, so I wanted to follow the shape culture of that era.

Designers always tried to create something fresh and give a feeling of futurism for their creations. This ended up having those rounded screen designs. The angles, the shapes are really strange for our eyes nowadays, but those times those were the future. Just think about sci-fi movies from the 70s and you will know what I’m talking about.
Having a well memorable GUI design is really important. Being influential and having something special is always recommended for indie games, so I took the risk of people don’t like the old-school forms, the unnatural and for some outdated solutions. I think the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.

Another problem that this game has to show a lot of data. I mean a lot. This is a tendency for Grand Strategy games and Management games as well, so Computer Tycoon can’t be an exception. Some of these games show even more data… such as this. Simply we have a lot of important data that the user must see. It is already challenging, but showing them in rounded windows is even harder. The rounded edges can reduce the useable are tremendous.

And this and my unfortunate weakness in general GUI planning made itself at the start of Computer Tycoon. Another problem was the close deadline that I had. I had to release the game close to the anniversary of Steve Jobs’ memorial day. This forced me to release the game a bit earlier as I should have done. People had windows not working, having layer issues that banned the user to close some windows in some scenarios, and having some buttons that were not enough straightforward, having menu systems that were tedious.

Lesson learned. I will never ever rush the release date. Especially not because of a marketing event that I didn’t execute myself but a bad small publisher team that fucks it up completely… but this is another story.

The GUI functionality problems are gone of course, for a long time. Also, the menu system is much better right now, but I release today a small style update. So check out the before and after pictures of the GUI. Still, there is a LOT to do, but the game will have so many modifications yet, with new screens and themes, that I don’t wanna get deep into it, yet. It is going to be a long ongoing process! I’ve reduced the angle of the list roundings, so I have more space., Also I gave a bit of shading, stroke, inner shadow/light AND I reorganized the upper information bar.

There were just too much information at the upper section in a single line. People can’t handle it…

I hope you like what you see! Remember checking out the game’s roadmap here:

Steamcommunity.com

I’m currently working on the tech/research updates of the game. You will get a tech tree and and some more!

Also please check out my friends site:

Razorsedgegames.org

He gives an awesome support and promotion for indie games for free on his site. He has a really nice community, so you could get eyeballs on your game if you share it with him!

And here are the before pictures:

Old Research ScreenOld Map ScreenOld Games Screen

And here are the new Screens! The small changes can make the difference, right?

New GUI 20180222New GUI 20180222 australiaNew GUI 20180222 compNew GUI 20180222 new computer liNew GUI 20180222 building siteNew GUI 20180222 resNew GUI 20180222 sitechooser

Roadmap and some news – Razors Edge

This article is crossposted from IndieDB!

Hi guys,

Before talking about the nasty stuff, please let me mention that Computer Tycoon is on sale until the end of the weekend. Now you can get it for 30% off. Don’t wait, because the later you buy the game the more expensive it will become! (You find the link to steam on the right side of this page).

Computer Tycoon had an awesome start. Not because of the millions of buyers, haha… but because it has a real core audience helping its development. The Roadmap is huge. Let me just list the areas where the game will have significant improvement and expansions:

01 – Research System Modifications/Extensions
02 – General GUI, and some small other improvements
03 – Dynamic World, Other Additions
04 – Employee system (+PP, +RP, marketing)
05 – Selling & Designing Hardware
06 – AI & Simulation Improvements
07 – Statistics and Feedback
08 – RPG Elements
09 – Governments & Long-Term Investments
10 – Historical Map
11 – Tutorials & Progressive Feature Introduction
12 – Localizations
13 – Community/Steam Features

Wanna you be LG or ASUS instead of IBM? Wanna you sell your hardware? Or sell your hardware to your competition? License your OS? Maybe support education in countries? Managing employees? In the upcoming versions, all of these will be possible!

Here you can see the full, detailed article about it with all of the crazy things:
The Official Roadmap Of Computer Tycoon

This Roadmap couldn’t be created without the fans. It really means a lot to me! Don’t hesitate to read the article and join the community right now if you are interested in management/strategy games and/or game development.

But I also got a lot of help from streamers and influencers. It is extremely valuable to watch how these people play even if they don’t have a real promotion value. This was one of the number one sources for me to see where and how should I improve the GUI and the texts in the game. Still… I have a lot to do, but I’m on it!

Also, there are some really special guys out there. I mean… the already mentioned guys are already awesome and extremely valuable, but there are just you know… those unbelievable people out there who want to HELP you. If you like indie games or you are an indie game developer, CHECK OUT this site:

Razorsedgegames.org

This site is for indies made by a single guy who was a developer himself earlier. He really knows how hard it is to be an indie and how harsh the market is. He gives free promotion, but this is not all. He helps you to manage your community, tell the things that you can’t, basically, he takes care of you if you leave him to do so. This level of support and enthusiasm is so rare that before finding him I didn’t think it can even exist. I’m sure his site will grow, so really… be sure to contact him if you have a nice game under your belt.

So… I’ve talked about the plans and the support I got. But what happened in the game so far?

Let me show it to you by pictures. I’ve touched the research screen, added a feedback screen, made optimizations, game mechanic changes, balancing, MAC OSX support and so on…

wall of gratitude
copy protection virusBilly

games

internet

power supply

sweden

Hey, here is where I work… just wanted to show you that how looks an indie living room.. oh I mean my office.

Studioban smaller

Support the Games that you like or you won’t get new Indie Titles soon!

That’s true. All of my savings are in my game. This is not an amount like with Cuphead,
but to me, this is all of my wealth. I’ve put extreme nights into the game. Sometimes I didn’t sleep for days (!) just to make everything fine on the release day that is today on October 12th, 2017.

Pirates don’t care about the struggle of indie devs. But if the climate won’t change soon, you won’t get indie games like Computer Tycoon in the future. Because of that, I made a simple plan and a simple message for people pirating my game. Something that people will easily understand.

Influencers can put pictures onto the floppy disc in the main menu of the game. Something like this:

And I uploaded the game myself to piratebay.. This is my plan in three pictures:



Pirates could download the game in 1-2 days anyway. But now at least they will get a virus free version and I will have a message for them to consider. After seeing the message for 50 seconds they can continue playing. Who knows, if the press will like this, maybe I will hit stronger than the Game Dev Tycoon!

I will update this post about the download statistics of the PirateBay Version. But please people, support me and BUY it if you like it at least. Still, it is much better than with the cinema, where you don’t know what will you buy, right? I count on you, thank you!

###########################################################################

UPDATE: October 14th,2017 – The first Conversion!

I’m also poor. Really. I barely can pay my rent, I don’t have a car, I have only my PC, software and instruments such as guitars and a big midi keyboard. That’s it after 10 years of work as an IT specialist. Am I rich then, or is it okay to steal from me? We can always have excuses when we do something wrong,- it’s easier than saying: I’m sorry.

I’m really afraid of financial failure.

But at least this guy did the right thing eventually! Or maybe it was way too frustrating to watch a “Commandore” screen after every 100 days in the game? Who knows, but I hope more will do the same.
At this moment the game was bought by 803 people. The torrent version (and I already found multiple other pirated versions as well – of the game isn’t online for 48 hours), but it must have thousands of users, what could change my life and give birth for more games.

I’d love to hear some reactions about that.

################################################################

UPDATE: October 15th,2017 – The usual bad numbers.

3 days after the release we really have now “clear pirate” versions and from the statistics I can clearly see thousands of downloaders – meanwhile the game just reached the 1000 copies mark.
I guess from now on it will be very hard to fight against this.

################################################################

 

Computer Tycoon is the first game about Computer Evolution, could be called the “Steve Jobs Simulator”. I offered the game’s trailer in his memory on October 5th on the 6th anniversary of his passing.

Check out the trailer and the game, or… even buy it here:

http://www.computertycoon.com

 

THANKS!

Computer Tycoon’s trailer in Memory Of Steve Jobs, and a bit of back story!

Why Steve jobs?

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”

Hi << Test First Name >>! This is a quote from Steve that I’m sure many knows. At the age of 10, I’ve built myself my first (very outdated) computer. When I played my first management games – I already knew that I MUST be a game developer. Unfortunately, my financial situation and generally the Hungarian environment didn’t let me do so.

Eventually, I became a developer and ended up being a solution architect/product owner. I led a project about biometric signatures for banks and the gov – I wasn’t poor anymore, I was well-paid and successful.

And unhappy.

I saw Steve talking about passion and motivation a lot of times during my life. And after a decade in the IT industry, I decided to give up my career, and try to make the huge step just from a hobbyist to be a real indie game dev.

Here is another quote:
“For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”

I burn my savings. I barely sleep. I risk a LOT. But now I’m happy – and I really hope that people will like what I created. That’s why I wanted to contribute the game to HIS memory! Also, I cannot tell any other name having a bigger impact on the computer industry. This is his death anniversary – but I hope that today I can give him a tribute by doing this – I’m sure that people will remember him for a very long time.

“Computer Tycoon is an indie business strategy game about Computer Evolution and starting your own company in the 70s. Lead the research race until 2034, create the best hardware and operating system, take care of your infrastructure and even handle your marketing. Find video game gems to promote them on your platforms, conquer the global market and became literally immortal. Players control the game from a world map from which the objective is to control available resources”

At this moment the feedbacks are great. The game often hits the first place on the IndieDB charts from more than 40k games, that is awesome. I’m really happy about that. If you’d like to upload the trailer somewhere, or feature it in any videos before the EA release on October 12th, feel free to do so, here you can download it for yourself:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/18nuft5cdypnotj/AACOvHpmSo08v-uQY5DRVVYQa?dl=0

Thanks for being here and supporting me! Every RT and share means a LOT to me!
Andris

The final rounds!

Hi guys,

This period of my life is very exciting and tiring at the same time. Just check out this pie:
resquetime

This is my month until now. blue means programming and graphic works directly, grey is when I’m working on marketing and social media, emails. Red is when I play or watch an episode of the Simpsons Family with my beloved (during dinner). On an average, it means more than 12 hours of work on a daily basis including weekends and here you can’t see the time that I spend _thinking_ about the game.

I do this for months now… Sometimes I work 16 hours on a day. Why all of this? Well, I cannot deny that I love doing it. I couldn’t do this otherwise. But this is also just way too important to me to take it not seriously. I would deeply regret later if the project fails financially that I didn’t do everything that I could.

Making a game is an extreme luxury these days. The worth of the time plus money that I put into this would be enough for a half flat. As Cliffski wrote, “if you are an indie, your game will flop and you will lose money”. Unfortunately, this can happen very easily and the changing steam environment (worse year after year) doesn’t make it easier to get visibility and revenue.

This night I’ve sent Computer Tycoon the GDWC (the game development world championship). I think most of the games win because of their visual appeal, so I’m afraid I can’t win. But I used their event as a deadline. I deeply believe in deadlines, those turn projects reality. I see failing so many people just being lost in their work for eternity without results. Also, I hope that they will give some kind of positive feedback that I could maybe use in my upcoming trailer.

The trailer! I have a private version at this moment. I got some pieces of advice from friends, but basically, everybody thinks it is pretty cool. This makes me very happy because I’m new with trailers. I’m very excited sharing it with you on October 5th in memory of Steve Jobs.
Still, I’d love to get any recommendations on this topic. If I’m the father of Computer Tycoon, Steve is its grandpa. The game is basically a “Steve Jobs Simulator”, simply I cannot sell it like that because of legal reasons. He is my biggest inspiration in this work! So… Could you maybe recommend me any places where it would be beneficial to share the trailer on the anniversary mentioning this relation? You can send me links to any groups, forums, sites etc. I’d be very happy to get any!

Also, I’d like to talk about the game news as well. I wrote so long time ago sadly, that I really have material to share with you.First of all, I made big changes to the GUI. Secondly I had heavy fights with my engine in the last weeks, and lastly, the game’s steam page silently has been created. Why silently? Well, originally I planned to release the game on October 5th. Steam administration non-sense made it impossible, unfortunately, so I had to postpone it to 12th (And putting the trailer to 5th to keep the anniversary). The problem is that this means only 1 week between the trailer and the EA dates and because of Steam Direct nowadays every project must be in a state called “coming soon” on steam for at least two weeks before release time. So I had to upload the game site before two weeks of my desired release date. I could put it on October 19th. But… because of the coming Halloween sale, I’m afraid to release the game any later than 12th. This forced me to create the steam page without the trailer.

I know this is a bad move. Uploading the site without a trailer is a bad practice. The reason why I decided to do it this way anyways is still the anniversary and Steve that is so important to me. I beg you to support me on that specific day, without your help this sacrifice will make more harm than good.

In the last last 12 days still, I have plenty of work. I have a very long bug list, and also two non-implemented features, that I’d like to carry out. Stay tuned! Soon I will send out keys to my subscription list as I promised earlier. And please check out the new GUI of the game! 🙂 Cheers!

 

Computer Tycoon Dominance Map

Computer Tycoon Dominance Map

Computer Tycoon Ease-Of-Use Map

Computer Tycoon Ease-Of-Use Map

Computer Tycoon - Customer Statistics

Computer Tycoon – Customer Statistics

Computer Tycoon - Hardware List

Computer Tycoon – Hardware List

Computer Tycoon - Research Screen

Computer Tycoon – Research Screen

Computer Tycoon - Technological Singularity

Computer Tycoon – Technological Singularity

It is not easy to release a game

Hello Everybody,

I’m still here! My original release date was October 5. Unfortunately, because of a stupid mistake of mine and ergonomy error of the Steam page, I won’t be able to release the game on that specific day. I am very sad about this. It meant a lot to me.
What happened? Well you know, since steam direct every game must be online as coming soon for two weeks. So I prepared everything, made the trailer and filled out the long forms on steam, including those related to early access. The problem was that I missed checking the “early access” checkbox.

This is mainly because I work during nights as well, I guess I was tired. But this is also an ergonomic problem of the site. Why can you fill out multiple text boxes related to specifically EA when you didn’t check the EA checkbox in the first place? Doesn’t matter now, I wasn’t able to get any feedback from steam in time. I’m late.

Because of this, I must postpone the whole process. Still, I’d like to devote the game to Steve, but how could I do that without releasing the game on the anniversary day? Well, I will release the trailer on that day instead, and I will release the game on Oct 12.

That’s all folks, soon I will post some fresh media for you because the game changed a lot since I last posted a picture.

Computer Tycoon – Motherboard illustrations

Hi all,

It’s really time to keep a signal for you that I’m still here! Please don’t forget that the planned release EA time is Oct 5 in memory of Steve Jobs. I really hope that I will be able to create an acceptable level of playability until then – but I’m also sure that the earlier I start EA to more useful feedback I can get.

Please remember that I will run a free key giveaway of the game before release time, your only task is to subscribe to my mailing list and sharing the game somewhere:

IndieDB and Reddit are very useful in promoting the game, but unfortunately, I’m far away from the desired attention that I need. So please consider sharing the game anyway.

In this update, I will share with you the motherboard illustrations of the game. Usually, I write a lot about the game, this time I think I will just leave you with the pictures. 🙂 Letting them speak for themselves. I hope you will get some nice memories viewing them!

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

Computer Tycoon MOBO

 

Computer Tycoon – Company Building Sites and Graphics Optimization

Hi all,

In the last 2-3 weeks, I was working on the building sites of the game. This was a hard period honestly, and this is the first time that I had some real trouble around the game.

Please don’t forget that still, you can register to my newsletter, so you can win a free copy of the game before release on steam. Also, I will look for testers using this email list. http://eepurl.com/cG63JD

Also, I’ve just created a subreddit for my game, where I will constantly look for the feedback! https://www.reddit.com/r/ComputerTycoon/

IndieDB

So, getting back to the topic, haha! It was a long time ago when I last created 3D games. The tools and the surrounded problems evolved a lot, and well, my knowledge faded away. I needed some time to get back!
For some time I really wasn’t sure if I want 3D parts into Computer Tycoon or not. But I ended up to include it. Simply, I felt that people will like it. I think it’s always rewarding to actually “see your empire” in the grand strategy aspect, so I implemented it in Computer Tycoon as well. I talked about this in earlier posts where I showed the country map of the game. I love strategy games where you can see your territory growing. But how about your company?
When people think about companies, even more corporates, they think about offices, factories. Yeah, kinda “workplaces”, right? So the best way to make your company be a living thing is to show those buildings, I guess. The problem is that this makes the game even bigger, and also I’m a bit afraid that thinking about other tycoon games, people will assume that you can freely build stuff on a map just as you do it in transport tycoon or rollercoaster tycoon.
But here, you won’t. This game isn’t about that kind of creativity. There is another line of tycoon games, where building/road/anystuff construction isn’t the main thing. Just remember to Game Dev Tycoon, where you create games, not roller coasters.
In Computer Tycoon the “building site” is where you see the infrastructure of your company. You can upgrade specific parts to get more productivity or research/marketing capability, new marketing methods and so on. And I decided to give you a living 3D animation representation of it. Simply, you just can’t put the buildings where you would like to because they have predefined positions. Maybe in the sequel! 🙂

But what was the problem? Well, I made you a so big and so detailed representation, with so many models, that the engine had some trouble. Of course, on my strong dev PC that was totally okay, but what about older computers? Tycoon games tend to have a small system requirement because they don’t have usually an impressive graphics quality. These games aren’t really about graphics.
So this was the dilemma… Should I keep this or not? Well, at this moment, I’m on the track to keep it. I made everything to optimize the graphics.

Using a Radeon HD 6850 card, you can get 58-60 fps on Full-HD (watching the biggest, most crowded scene). And using a Geforce 920M you can also get 30 fps on 1388×768 resolution.
The Radeon HD 6850 is a 5 years old video card, with a 2262 benchmark. The Geforce 920M is a relatively new video card for laptops with a 711 benchmark. I hope that it’s enough. This is something that I will need to test out on more systems. Yes, I really count on you in that! 🙂 Getting to this point was hard, pretty hard with very long nights. I just really hope that this level of system requirement is still acceptable. Feel free to check your own hardware on the benchmark list and put it in the comments to me.

Check out these screenshots of the building site. I guess that’s what is the most interesting for you out there. On the pictures, ambient occlusion is turned off. I’m still thinking if I want it or not.

Please stay tuned, and recommend the game to your friends who like retro computers and tycoon/strategy games. I really need your help. Multiple friends of mine have flopped games recently, and telling the truth, I’m a bit afraid at this moment that I will end up the same way. I work _literally_ all day and night to make this happen. Thanks for reading! 🙂

Computer Tycoon Building SiteComputer Tycoon Building SiteComputer Tycoon Building SiteComputer Tycoon Building Site   Computer Tycoon Building SiteComputer Tycoon Building SiteComputer Tycoon Building Site

Computer Tycoon – Kit Computers, Home Computers, Personal Computers, Portable Computers and Tablets?

Computer Architectures in Computer Tycoon

Computers are evolving since the 70s. In one of my previous writing, I’ve explained what’s the main difference between Personal Computers and Home computers in the game, and what is the story behind these names.

In a nutshell, the expression “home computer” became unused because of marketing reasons. Companies thought that this name will indicate that their computers are only for games, and this will demotivate the business sector in buying their products. Also, the personal computer concept of IBM became really popular and the only alternative that was financially successful is the “MAC”, so we now have PCs and MACs.

(Please don’t forget my mailing list. By subscribing you can be one of my alpha testers or even win a free copy of the game before release
http://eepurl.com/cG63JD)

This post on IndieDB

But these are only 2 categories. Still, we have very different architectures, such as “Portable Computers”. Well, again, a not really popular expression. Laptops, notepads, tablets could be called like that. This is again, somehow the result of marketing strategies. Basically, when you have a product, you try to sell it as something “new”. Also, these new names or categories sometimes are really logical as well. So today we have laptops, notebooks, tablets and so on. (some time ago we also had PDAs, and in fact we have today smartphones as well, and during that time we had kinda hybrid devices too).

In Computer Tycoon you will have Kit Computers, Home Computers, Personal Computers, Portable Computers, and Tablets.

Oh, what a nice list, isn’t it? 🙂

Kit Computers

This is something interesting for youngsters. A long time ago computers were very expensive devices. Also, they very huge physically as well. First, they were bigger than rooms, after that they were as big as a furniture, a cabinet. They used huge magnetic tapes or punch cards. Early developers made such cards as their “programs”. Wow! Just imagine me giving you Computer Tycoon on a 100-meter long card!
Then some nerds created the first computer for a “consumer friendly” price. Is it something like computers today? Well, not really. It didn’t have a screen, neither a keyboard (not a mouse of course). It was able to communicate with you by LEDs on its front panel. You were able to give numerical commands to the computer using toggle switches. And also… these were so called “kit computers” because they were constructed by YOU from a so called (not so user-friendly haha) kits.
They were awesome if you ask me. Here is the kit computer from Computer Tycoon:

Lovely, right? Well, you can’t play GTA V or LOL on it. Not even Tetris or Pong. Still, it was awesome. Before that computer people could only see computers in labors or some universities. Now you could have one at home.

What is really interesting to me, that the next models were not really so far from this actually. They used not much better CPUs, but they got a keyboard and a screen. This is what I call a small step in technological advancement but a huge jump in features. From the user experience perspective, it’s undeniably something very important.

In Computer Tycoon Kit Computers are represented only as introductory and tutorial purposes. In fact, you will start with a Kit Computer and your first task is to get all of the needed technology to build your first Home Computer!

Look at this picture, please:

Computer Tycoon architecture

Here you can see the main parts of this system. Red parts are mandatory at the moment (this is something that can change by time in the game). Your kit computer will have some memory, a CPU, power supply, the main circuit (let’s call it a motherboard, although it’s not the same as today, but generally this was the base) and some kind of “operating system” (a program that can handle all of these parts)

Home Computers

When you get keyboard and monitor to the accessories and other important technology you can move to the “home computer” era:

Computer Tycoon HC Architecture

Here you go. As you can see the system has expanded. Did you notice that displays aren’t mandatory? Well, there were Home Computers connected to the television. A well-known model was the Commodore 64 for example. Don’t worry about the empty parts by the way. You will fill those with hardware elements. In Computer Tycoon you have to develop the hardware elements first. Building your own system is only the second step.

As you should have noticed. There are different indicators on the screens, such as “performance”, “prestige”, “quality, “features”, and “ease-of-use”. Different elements give different values to these, and different architectures have different possibilities as well. (Oh just noticed the typo in “prestige :)) on the screenshot). These indicators will be very important to you because the market will receive your product depending on these values AND on your price of the product… and on the offer of your opponents.

Personal Computers

After a while, you will get Personal Computers and Portable Computers as well…

Computer Tycoon architecture

Do you notice the difference? But why aren’t storage or power supply mandatory? Well, I already mentioned that different architectures mean different possibilities. As I told you in the beginning in real life the difference between PCs and HCs is mainly from marketing aspects AND the modular build of PCs. Although back in the early times it was still more of a marketing tool as well (Because they promised that you can easily change the CPU in your computer, but in reality, it was hard and rare), today it’s kinda true. The PC compatible computers can contain devices from a lot of manufacturers together, and also you can greatly improve and customize your system.

If your customer can gather hardware for a PC from different sources.Why couldn’t you avoid some kind of hardware elements? Although you have to offer the main parts of the system, so still you must create computers here, without input devices, storages, displays or a power supply… AND of course, you don’t have to create an operating system either. Is it beneficial to you? Well, we will see! 🙂 (Oh my gosh, “operation system” on the screenshot! Well, I will have to operate out these labels soon 🙂 )

Portable Computers

Portable Computers come only one step later. Although they won’t be a hit fast:

Computer Tycoon Portable Computer Architecture

The first portable computers were not like our laptops today. Some of them were as big as a traveling suitcase with a screen on it as small as your palm.

And again. The mandatory parts are changing. Also, I should notice that the viewable architectural differences are only one thing. With different devices, your customers will have different desires and you will have to solve this. There will be some additional design concerns connected to the different architectures. You don’t have to create the fastest Portable Computers out there for the same price as their Personal Computer rivals. Also, Home Computers will tend to be more of a prestige symbol after a while. Oh, MACs are very nice. But will a hardcore gamer buy a MAC for gaming purposes? Of course not. Or will a hardcore player buy a tablet maybe, for gaming purposes? But at the same time, a businessman, will buy a Nuclear Reactor Madaf***er PC to show documents to his customers?

Tablets

And eventually, we will have the tablets:

Computer Tycoon architecture

Although Tablets are portable, they function today as a really different thing compared to laptops – for a reason. These are much more like a gadget than a computer. It’s unlikely that you will use a tablet for computing astronomical data, right? And although laptops are portable, having them in your bed isn’t recommended. Laptops are portable in the first case to move them between your homes, rents or workplaces and use them on a desk. (Oh I know that how much of you don’t see this like that 🙂 ) But a tablet is really something that you can grab and bring with yourself to anywhere. Even to the toilet haha! Also, a tablet is even more of a luxury product if you ask me, something that is for your comfort and pleasure, not for work. A laptop will last much longer than a tablet. (this is a concern even to banks today where they would like to use them to enrich the customer experience. What they don’t really consider enough that these are not durable enough to serve too long under a massive user load).

Tablets won’t last for too long, because in my opinion after a while their design will be obsolete. In the future, I’m sure that we will use some kind of light-based devices, and holographic GUI. Also, I do believe that our “desktop” computers will be all portable after a while. Well, maybe I’m wrong in that. We will see! 🙂

Originally I planned to include PDAs and ROBOTS into the game, but I decided to cut them out because of financial and design concerns. But if the game will sell well, I will include them in DLCs.

I hope that you enjoyed my article. Please share it if you like what you read. I’m a solo-dev fighting with time, I need your support out there. Also please remember that I’d like to release the game in early access, or at least create a demo for you to October 5. in memory of Steve Jobs.

Official Page

Cheers! 🙂

www.computertycoon.com

Computer Tycoon Group Picture