Why Legends Overload took so long - February 17, 2022
Legends Overload was originally predicted for release at around the end of November 2021 last time -- it was not released until the middle of February 2022. Why did it take so long?
There were several factors to this -- simply having a large amount of content to create was a big one. I had originally expected Legends Overload to be 25-30% bigger time-wise, but it ended up being more in the area of 40-100% bigger (depending on factors or criteria for measurement -- going by just story, getting all triumphs across all modes, how new story content was handled timing-wise, what parties/characters were used for what modes for the triumphs, etc.).
Another was my using the Skylight Freerange expansions (for both games) as a frame of reference for how long Legends Overload would have taken, while adjusting it for Legends Overload's size -- this ended up inaccurate, primarily because the Freerange games typically had story content added with a few passives, which was easy to test (even with multiple story paths). Legends Overload, on the other hand, not only had a lot of story content added, but a lot more mechanical changes than the Freerange expansions, which required a lot more testing to be done.
Another big factor was severely underestimating the time needed for testing. Testing did go very smoothly -- but the number of test cases, especially for anything to do with mechanics, needed far more than one test. It was not just needing to see something work -- it was about ensuring that it did not trigger in the cases it should not. Originally, I had been counting on Demon Rush already having its existing mechanics heavily tested to mitigate the time here. However, between new passives, new enemies, Barklord, Legend Plus and Boulderball, there was a lot more ground to cover than first thought.
Some of the cosmetic changes needed a lot more work beyond just their creation. For example, when it came to the updated sky textures, this also included having to re-adjust the positions of most skyboxes (and fixing the special outside cases, which took more than its share of time). The bigger hit for time was the previously existing screenshots and movie clips -- which needed to be redone for the new sky, brick and tree textures, at minimum, and needed to be done twice total (one for each platform). In a lot of cases, it can be tough to get a good screenshot or movie clip in a short amount of time, and this could get time-consuming trying to find something that was acceptable in each instance.
There were also a lot of other little miscellaneous slowdowns that did not take too much time, but still added up heavily in the end.
I apologize that Legends Overload took this long, and I apologize for the radio silence (a lot of the silence was me being in a perpetual state of "I only have one week of work to go, I can say something soon when it's finished" for about two months). I will take what has occurred during Legends Overload's development timing and use it in my expectations for the upcoming Tenebris expansion.