That would nice!
I'm confident we'll get one as the Insider Connected feature starts to roll out to all of the Spike 2 titles over the coming months. I suspect we'll see a few updates as the Connected feature set expands over the next 12 months.
However I'm not confident on what effort Tim will put in to the update outside of the new feature. I've been disappointed by his support for the game and it could well be another 1.02 style update.
I've sent through a few emails since 1.02, detailing the bugs I've found and presentation issues that are evident and require fixing. Also sent through constructive feedback on the various issues I see with aspects of the game. I'm sure others have been providing bug reports and feedback too. So he should have all the info - just hope he takes the time and opportunity to at least address the important stuff as Connected is added.
I kept a running list of things from myself which I posted earlier in the thread. Will look back and dig it up.
5 minutes later..... (This feedback is from my PRO, so may be different to Prem/LE models. Also keep in mind the improvements section is just my opinion )
--= BUGS =--
[Magma Beast fight]
This is assuming you're not using the sword of rage. By default this mode requires 8 shots to complete. When you clear all 7 lit shots, it should then relight all 7. It only relights 6, with the last shot you hit not relighting. This crept in with the 1.02 update.
[Mode intro music]
Easiest way to replicate this is to have a monster mode active and then shoot the left saucer to start Knight mode. The Knight retro music will start playing while the monster mode complete screens play out. The lit shots on retro mode 1 will also start playing here too. The retro music will then reset once the Knight mode intro starts. Another way to see this is to light mystery and start Black Castle. The Black castle music will play over the top of mystery and then reset once the Black Castle intro starts. This could be more of a polish item, but as a coder, I view it as a bug.
[Lich Lords Sword of Rage]
The Lich Lords is the one mode you don't want to activate the sword of rage in as it will result in less points. All other monster battles (beside Black Castle) are made easier AND more valuable scoring wise by activating the sword. Here though, the mode is made easier with all shots lit and only 4 shots to complete - but this results in less points being available (even though each shot is worth more with the sword active). You're better off not using the sword, clearing the 3 shots and then doing it again. The way I think this mode should play out (to keep it in line with the other monster battles with the sword active) is to light all shots (currently happens) but instead of only requiring 4 shots to complete, each shot needs to be hit twice. First to tag and the second to clear. Do this for 4 shots to complete the mode. This keeps the battle in the same format and would then reward the player with the proper points for using the sword in this mode instead of penalizing them.
[Skillshot success visual / sfx not played on shoot again]
Hitting a sucessful skillshot while "Shoot Again" is shown on the display will not play the skill shot success display animation, sfx or callouts to play. Points will be awarded correctly, but no feedback is given to the player.
[Monster intro speech after mystery doesn't always play]
There are times where the callouts for the monster battle intro won't play after mystery is awarded. This could be by design, but feels off.
[Average Scores audit]
This value has always shown 00, so is never updated. This audit may have no use in BK, but though I'd list it anyway.
--= IMPROVEMENTS =--
The ROARS that were in the monster intros at 1.00 were fantastic. The Lich Lords and Hydra were awesome! My neighbors could be forgiven for thinking all hell was being unleashed next door. These were sadly nerfed with the 1.01 update and now sound far too soft. They need to be restored to their proper glory. This is Black Knight - Sword of Rage, not The Black Knight - Petting Zoo.
[Retro Mode 1]
This mode has an awesome soundtrack and I love the retro sfx. But I find it really uninspiring to shoot. It's a mini wizard mode that's not easy to reach so should be rewarding. The lit shots are not worth much (even after the 1.02 update) and there's no interesting logic or advancement to the mode. Simply clear the shots and start over again. No additional rules or even an extra ball available. The mode relies far too heavily on having multiple supers active and leveled up - but that requires so much set up that most players will never be able to take full advantage of the mode. Add to the fact that if you lose your ball right before starting the mode, the best you could hope for is all supers at level 2, which still requires a lot of set up and presents risk that isn't worth the payoff at that point.
All other monster battles let you continue when lose your ball. Even if they time out, you can start them again by hitting the flail/knight/shield X number of times. After all the effort in reaching this battle, it's so deflating being sent back to the start should you fail. There's no ball save at the start. No ball save available with in the mode. You can't stack multi ball with it. You're forced to hit the 3 most dangerous shots in the game 12 times. The flail and shield are well known for sending the ball straight down the middle with no opportunity for the player to react. By all means have an option to send the player back to the start under comp settings. But in the home environment, the current set up should never have been the default. It otherwise has an awesome music track and is an enjoyable shot layout to battle against the Black Knight. But the way in which the player is punished (often due to bad luck from the shield or flail) is not fun.
Right now instant info does not show information of the progress of U-Turns towards the next award. It would be good to also see here what the current value of each super is worth. For example: Super pops - level 2 - 50K, Super slings - level 1 - 15K, etc.
[U-Turn progress animation]
The number of u-turns required until the next award can often be hidden behind the skeleton animation that plays over the top of it. This often makes it hard to determine how many more you need until the next extra ball is ready - especially when the number is below 10. The animation needs to be moved or the text moved to make this easier to read. Even some call outs here would help.
[Multiball Progress UI]
I'd love to see the Triple Knights Challenge multiball progress shown on the main UI. Yes it's viewable in the Instant Info screens, but I see value in having this added as small orbs/gems that light based on what you have locked. As a player I can instantly see where I'm at with the progress and factor that into my play.
I love the challenge mode in my JP. When I'm tired of the normal game, I love playing Escape Nublar. On top of that, I can either play it for points OR speed run it since it has high score tables for both. It just adds a nice layer of variety onto an already polished game. Some sort of boss rush mode or challenge mode against the Black Knight and his army would be a great alternative to the normal game that gives players more options when switching the game on.
Right now there are only 2 awards from U-Turns - extra balls at set levels. Most players will never reach the second extra ball level. This could have other awards available as you progress the counter like KNIGHT letters, points, 2X playfield scoring, ball save, etc. It doesn't need to be locked at just 2 awards.
This is one my real annoyances with the game scoring and has been for some time. In their current form, I find them mostly useless. When you activate a super, it's random. There's no way of knowing which super you'll get. I can't use skill to activate supers I want. I have to rely on the RNG gods and pray it's pops or spinner. I find it limiting too that the supers get cleared out on losing a ball or collection. I find that collecting the super jackpot is only ever worthwhile after Retro mode 1 - that's only IF I managed to get some supers active before starting it. Otherwise, the few million points that builds up just isn't worth spending my magna save. Speaking of which...
The other thing is collecting supers via the magna save - ok, it was an idea and it's been tested - but it's just not good. As a player, I should not have to sacrifice my magna save AND have it hit the right return lane switch to collect the super jackpot. Right now, I will always shoot the ball either to the ramp or left saucer and press the action button while the ball returns down the rail. The game plays the magna save animation and triggers the magnet, but the ball is safely on the rail.
I don't know what the right way to improve supers are. In a game with limited content, I'd love to bring them into my play more. But I don't find there's enough payoff in general play and no real reason to use them.
Right now it's far too difficult to spell Knight twice to reach the second retro mode. Only 1 letter is available from each monster. It's a very, very rare mystery award. You can get one by advancing far enough into multi ball. All others are from WAR hurry up, which is often dangerous since it's always the same 3 central targets that can each result in a straight down the middle response. There are a number of other ways they can be awarded. U-Turns, skill shots, drop targets, pop bumpers, etc.
[Retro mode selection]
Two issues I have with the second Knight mode (RANSOM) - 1) It's near impossible to reach (only been there 3 times in 1700 games) and 2) It's a short 60 second mode - which means it's over all so quickly after the very long journey to get there. Allow the player to select which Knight mode they want to play once they spell KNIGHT. It allows the player to have some variety in which retro mode they play and also allows players to make a decision based on strategy - Do I have lots of supers going? Then retro mode 1 seems like a good move. Limited or no supers? Retro mode 2 makes more sense.
[Additional multiball on PRO]
Right now on the PRO, most players will only ever see Triple Knights Challenge and Retro Mode 1. Retro Mode 2 - RANSOM - as fun as it is, is locked behind such a difficult wall most will never see it. Same for RAGE - which is locked behind having to defeat the Black Knight on 1 ball. This leaves PRO owners with only 2 accessible multiball modes. The game is crying out for either a smaller 2 ball multiball and/or the inclusion of Catapult multiball. The game already has all the assets for catapult, so a chunk of the work is done. It's been mentioned before that it could be done by lighting locks via the drop target bank.
[More lower level content]
If Retro mode 2 and RAGE absolutely have to be locked away behind difficult requirements, then more obtainable lower level things need to be there for the average player to enjoy. Combo shots or Mini battle challenges for example.
[Secondary monsters in each realm]
I have sometimes wondered if originally there were plans for multiple monsters in each of the realms - perhaps for second play through once you get beyond the Black Castle. Or even to add variety each time you play. This would certainly be a nice addition to help add that extra layer of variety to the realms. This requires a lot of work though with assets, etc - so won't happen.
[Alternative sound track]
Great to see this added in 1.01, but would like to have this as a selectable option at the start of a game. Having to go into the service menu to switch between them is not helpful. This could be implemented by holding both flipper buttons in before starting a game and selecting to start a game with the desired sound track.
[Triple Knight Challenge Intro]
We get some shaker motor action on the ball 1 and ball 2 locks, but none on the intro to Triple Knights Challenge. A nice bit of polish to this intro would be the inclusion of the shaker motor during the lightning strikes.