Alpha Test feedback Aug 15, 2020


We’re running a public, open Alpha playtest of Age of Ascent (AoA) today, the 15th of August at 1900 UTC. That’s 8pm in the UK, and 2pm Central US time.

The playtest will run for half an hour only.

To reserve your place ahead of time, sign your pilot up at

Please come back today, to and you will be admitted to the playtest.

We’re testing the PvP combat module only this time - but with the new technology base and our awesome new visual style! Everyone will be in the same ship loadout, and it’s everyone for themselves!

Other modules of the game such as trade and industry, mining and mission running will be in other playtests later this year.

After the playtest has finished, please do come back to this thread to give us your feedback and comments!


  • We are only testing the PvP experience in this playtest, not the full game!
  • You’ll get the best experience if you have equipment suitable for piloting (eg mouse and keyboard, or a gamepad controller)
  • You’ll need to be in Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge web browsers on any OS of your choice
  • Players from the last playtests will notice that the radar is currently turned off - this is because it is being substantially enhanced at present
  • For this test we’ve got the music soundtrack turned off by default
  • We’re not showing pilot names under the ships for this test - instead we’re showing distance-to-target as this helps us test the telemetry feeds. Ship/pilot ID will be back!
  • Shield capacity has been bumped up, but shield recharge is disabled
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Signed up! Can’t wait!

I notice that from the email, all the links are redirecting me to Illyriad’s steam page. Had to access the sign up page directly from the main site.

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yeah you messed up the email, all the links go to your steam page, not a good start.

heh, apologies! Minor teething oopsie on the email system.

All the links should be good now.

What do the buttons in the bottom do?

Well i was stuck in this screen. I could hear the shooting and technically control my spacecraft however well i couldn’t see anything. Could possibly be from my end though.

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  • I found controls to be a bit difficult for mouse. Mouse wasn’t captured therefore I had to bring mouse back to center always to fly straight.
  • I saw one plane glitching, jumped from one place to another in front of me with a straight tail behind and suddenly vanished. Lag?
  • Felt empty. There were not enough players may be. Lacking any features. Buttons in the bottom were not doing anything.
  • I was able to hit players at any distance
  • when taking damage, shaking camera also felt irritating

Good performance though. But may be you should have added bots and adverstised it more to add lot more number of players to test the potential.

Had a lot of fun! Had a hard time figuring out how to pilot the ship at first, but once I hit Tab everything felt like it used to.

Noticed when flying backwards, your strafe controls are inverted.

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The mouse controls was bit difficult, and couldn’t control the ship with arrow keys or wasd, maybe that might be my computers problem.

Looking good! I ran in Edge on an old Dell XPS-16, and the frame rate was so low (maybe ~5 frames/sec) that I couldn’t meaningfully aim. I used an Xbox controller, and it worked nicely!

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This dogfight portion of the game obviously has a clusterf— quality to it, mainly due to the fact that there are no teams. But I thought the gameplay was in line with similar games of this genre (with the cool part that we were playing it in a broswer). I used a mouse and keyboard – it was clunky to have to use the keyboard to roll and thrust. The gameplay would be improved for me if I had a joystick or gaming mouse where I could assign those controls to a more intuitive place.

There were 2-3 times were I respawned but didn’t ever seem to get access to controlling the ship. Eventually I got mowed down.

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I found the screen shake when you take damage very disorientating and made me feel a little sick here and there.
Game ran very smoothly in an Edge browser and once I got used to the (intended?) space lag on the control responses it was quite fun, though was a mystery sometimes who was shooting at you…
Red target boxes were too big and the ship detail was lost, but I guess this is so you can where the enemy is in space!

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Same as Spp. My cpu usage shot to 100% and I could see the HUD and hear stuff but none of the objects loaded. Also of note, prior to the test, logging in on my pilot shot my Chrome cpu usage to ~35% and would freeze any game running animations. I rebooted prior to the test. This is a 10-year old computer. Here is my dxdiag:

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I miss the gravidar overlay to tell where off screen ships are at, but otherwise like the new look.

Mouse and keyboard controls were frustrating at times (one button off, hitting tab instead of Q). Would like to throttle up/down with mousewheel.

Thanks for another playtest.


My first time playing and I loved it. Once you get used to the controls, it’s a lot of fun. Hard to track targets at first but that became easier as the game went on. I think the mouse was easy to control.

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Oh man, I’m glad you guys are back! It felt great to fly the ship. The biggest difficulty I ran into was maneuvering with both the mouse and keyboard. Maybe add the arrow keys for the roll and thrust to compliment the mouse. Of course Joystick control would be even better, but I don’t know how that would fit into your model.

Also, it took me a little while to realize that the status information was in the center. While I sort of expected to see it at the edges of the screen, I can see why it makes sense to put it right where your vision is focused. The only issue I had with that, was that when there was a lot of activity on the screen, it kinda blended in to the view. Maybe try both, center and edge.

Finally, it would be nice to have a scanner view, and a way to lock on to a target, although I’m guessing that these are still to come.

All in all, I’m looking forward to the next test!

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It was pretty intuitive overall, except for the thrust control. Had to do some weird finger stretching with mouse control for R/F/B. Took a long while to build that muscle memory.

It would be nice to be able to target lock someone, as there are some really crazy moments with the screen flooded with ships and I just wanted to follow one person until done with them. But it was too easy to lose track of them.

There were a couple of noticeable lag moments. Nothing too significant, but you could see the ships hopping a bit here and there while tailing them.

It’s nice to see the dev happening again, I look forward to this game. The tech behind it is so intriguing. Hopefully, there will be more dev architecture blogs entries (like there were a few years ago) giving a bit of detail on how to implement the server/app structure. That’s the biggest draw for me, as a fellow .NET developer.

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Any chance we’ll get to see the scoreboard?

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Nothing as yet, Usama - it’s currently just an indication of the ship loadout. But they will become useful in later interations.

Great to have you back, PR!

heh, I hadn’t actually tested the strafe control when flying backwards… but will confirm and get fixed.