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Union Update: October and things to come


Before we dive into todays Union Update, here a chance to watch or rewatch the Anno 1701 Anniversary stream.

More time has passed, and the month of October is already ending. With 10 blogs in October alone and over 1000 comments in one month, we were almost as busy creating content as all of you in the Anno union were engaging. As this week will be somewhat short for us here at Ubisoft Blue Byte Mainz (we have two bank holidays coming up), we will today share a quick recap of previous content and a look at some of the things you can expect in November before we return to our regularly scheduled content next week.

Union Updates and Devblog
We started October with a small throwback to our announcement at gamescom and with the Concept Art DevBlog, kicking off a new series of blogs to give you more insights into the various disciplines here in the studio. You seemed to like it, so we definitely want to continue with these blogs. There was also some talk about a very important topic: fishing huts. With our “So where is the fish?” DevBlog, we wanted to show you how player feedback has already affected the game’s development and how varied feedback collection can be. Finally, we started our second vote, allowing Anno Union members to vote on the third exhibition event for our monument, based on community suggestions.

Livestreaming and Anniversary content
It was also the month of our first livestream, as the AnnoCast had its first test-run for our podcast format where we share insights about the current development of the game. And our second show aired just two weeks after, as part of our Anno 1701 anniversary week. During that week, we highlighted an old classic, sharing memories and giving insights into the development of an older Anno titles. The streaming room is still a work-in-progress, so expect the layout and decorations to change for some of the future shows. We are of course also planning to show you Anno 1800 live and in action, but cannot share an exact date for this yet.

What is coming in November?
As teased before, we want to talk about a topic that we know is very near and dear for many of you: the military aspect of the game. You can expect a meaty blog similar to the recent Multisession DevBlog where we will dive into this topic and our philosophy for it. We also saw that you enjoyed learning about concept art, so we will continue where that blog left off with a look at the work of our 3d artists. In addition, the Visionary has not been idling since winning our first community vote, so you can expect to hear more from him soon as well. There is also the upcoming Anniversary of Anno 2070, and we would like to hear from you what you would like to see in celebration of it.

We are still working on some updates to the website, so rest assured that this topic has not been forgotten. Finally, we are still panning to invite a few lucky Anno union members for a playtest before the end of the year, so definitely keep an eye out for that.

But what do you think?
We received great comments during the AnnoCast and the Anno 1701 Let’s Play and we are curious about further feedback regarding streams and anniversary content. Do you like the shows? Is there something you would like to see more of? And how do you feel in general about content highlighting some of our older titles?

15 Comments

  1. CSR2K3 CSR2K3

    Will modding be available? Like with the Steam workshop? Anno (as you prob. know) has a huge community. E.g. Anno 2170 – A.R.R.C & Anno 1404 – I.A.A.M. are great examples.
    Making modding easy accessible would be a huge plus imho.

  2. CSR2K3 CSR2K3

    I’d prefer a more complex military aspect of the game. A bit more like a command & conquer setup would be great. In Anno 1404 the units were a bit “static” from my opinion. With all the great details you guys put into the Anno, it would be really nice to see all sorts of soldiers / units moving independently. (Off course this can be enabled / disabled/configured in the setup of a continious game :P)

    Having the option to buy more units through micro-transactions will make it a great business case.

    Can’t wait to see what you guys come up with…

  3. Arkenophas Arkenophas

    Nice streaming 🙂 I wait for the military blog, I’m sur it will be really interesting 😀

  4. AmpeImann AmpeImann

    Really loved the live stream! It’s great to see insights into old games as well as hear the actual team talk about changes and interesting things that they remember from working on the title. Really looking forward to more in depth breakdowns on 1800 design concepts!

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  5. Swimming-Paul Swimming-Paul

    Thanks for the live-stream: it was very cool to see you guys playing such a cult-classic game. Personally I´m not very interested in the military aspects of the game, because I always play anno in sand-box mode with AI characters which don´t settle in other islands. However I´m aware that it´s a very important feature for many players of the Anno series so I´m curious to see what you have in mind.
    Do you think you could make an update in the future about ornamentals? Or isn´t that considered important enough? Thanks for your handy work!

  6. Olinater Olinater

    Looking forward to the upcoming devblogs this month! I really enjoy watching the streams. However, as mentioned, if you guys are doing a let’s play it’s probably better to sit behind a desk or a table. Besides, unless you guys want to start a let’s play series I would like to suggest to start playing with a previous saved game in which you guys can explain more about other aspects of the game. Anno is quite a lengthy game (which is something I really like about it!), which means that if you keep beginning at the start of the game you cannot cover all the aspects (like war and diplomacy) in just, more or less, one hour. Maybe use saved games to illustrate certain scenarios? Like at the start of a war, or talking about late game economics (and give the viewers some tips about it).

  7. MinneIceCube MinneIceCube

    Military is great and all, but as NsN once said, “I like to crush my opponents with pure economic power” (on the shares system from 2070’s deep ocean)
    Will there be a way to do that? something akin to the shares system from 2070?

  8. Soulridder Soulridder

    Well, for future streams:
    – Anno 2070 Anniversary: Let’s do the same as with Anno 1701, just other people playing and this time on the hardest possible difficutly with the hardest possible AI in. 😉 Maybe even as Eco to make it a bit harder? xD
    OR: the above, just in Multiplayer, two people playing at the same time with all those hard settings and the AI and just one can win?
    – Maybe change a bit the position of the camera while playing Games. The camera screen and the UI of the Game overlapped a bit in 1701.
    ==> My idea: The game is on the left side and on the right side we can see the chat with the camera screen right above it. Would solve two problems: Where to place the chat and where to put the camera screen while beeing ingame that nothing overlaps.

    I hope the room will be more comfortable for you when the next Let’s Play stream starts.

    The idea of showing older titles is in my opinion a good idea. It lets everyone see the differences between all those Anno titles and let’s you feel how much Anno has changed over the years. Would be nice to see the studio, maybe in some livestream just walking around the studio, showing everything.
    I guess it would also be nice to see more of the development of Anno 1800 or Anno in general from the perspective of a Gameplay Programmer and Engine Programmer. 😉

    Nice to hear that the website will get an update soon. Hm, I guess I should start putting a list of stuff together for the article over the military aspect to see which thinks you included in the Game and on which thinks I can comment without forgetting stuff. xD
    I hope there is enough time left for developing the Game while reading all those comments. I mean, over 1000 comments is a lot to read.

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  9. palemale53 palemale53

    I enjoyed the gameplay, so please let us have more of it. I would suggest a more comfortable setup for the player. Having to lean forward to play like that takes herm out of the conversation and is certainly not good for hersh back. I would suggest something like a TV dinner tray stand or a large enough plank that can hold the keyboard and mouse on herm lap.

    The format was interesting with two players taking turns to play. I remember a series of videos where three players took turns playing Cities: Skylines. It was particularly interesting because the three had different ideas of how to play, and there was some conflict between their views. It was particularly interesting because each one was thinking out loud.

    That did not work too well in this video because the discussion was about other things, distracting the player. The desperate recovery from disaster was good to watch. I do hate it when it happens in my own games.

  10. BlueBreath BlueBreath

    Very interested in the military aspect.

  11. Mr_Boatyface Mr_Boatyface

    I am glad to read that we will recieve more in-depth information about the military aspect of the game. Will the gameplay be like Anno 1404 with camps or will there be a more complex battle system? Please keep us updated! 🙂

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