Derek Smart’s MMO Line of Defense has a progress update this week covering the state of the game’s build. A new patch is on the way, and it’s fairly light, according to the post, being focused on the “underlying tech.” But that’s partly by design.
“Progress has been somewhat slow due to various factors including team and tech related challenges, as well as scheduling,” Smart says. “In addition to this, due to resources, scheduling, and dev costs, I also made the final decision to complete the PC version of the game using the existing custom engine in order to avoid any long term delays and complications.”
This means Line of Defense will be ported to UE4 by a secondary team. “In the end, we’re going to end up with two engine versions of the game, one for the PC, and the other for consoles,” he tells early access backers. “But due to the similarities between our Havok based custom engine, and UE4, there are currently no concerns related to parity in the game’s features. If anything, most of the noticeable differences will be in visuals, due to the vastly superior graphics of the UE4 engine.”
The game has been in development since at least 2011, when we first profiled it on Old Massively. In the last couple of years, it’s been pulled from Steam over review bombing and switched its business model to buy-to-play. It’s still not clear whether the Steam version of the game will return.
“Some people keep asking about the Steam store page etc.,” Smart notes. “We disabled that back in April 2016 and moved the game to CBT. As we have enough people who access the CBT servers helping us test, it allows us to focus test the game without distractions. That’s why we now have very few known issues left to address; which for such a large game, you would agree, is pretty impressive.”
“We’re working on some exciting things related to the game and future plans for the Line Of Defense series,” Smart concludes.
Smart is at this point best known to MMORPG players for his involvement in the Star Citizen metadrama; in 2015, he dubbed himself the “internet warlord” and famously began a series of rants against the crowdfunded sci-fi game, publicly declaring it a “failure” and “unmitigated disaster,” issuing demand letters, and threatening Cloud Imperium with a lawsuit, which to date has not materialized.