July Development Update 3!

Greetings Pioneers!

We have more shiny progress to feast your eyes on, but it has been mostly a design focussed week. Attacks and AI types are getting the testing treatment and we have been having plenty of discussions about the oxygen system and its implications.

Our new game resolution male character mesh is taking form to match the quality of the new female mesh and we have been continuing with the adjustments to the world to make it more enticing to explore and traverse.

More details below!

John – Lead Designer

Crazy week of refining story points and in game designs for Oxygen and how it influences the players survival/crafting priorities.  Otherwise just keeping a stern eye on the rest of the team so they feel slightly uncomfortable while they work <3

Matt – Art Director

A lot of clean up tasks from my end at the moment. Primarily guiding the guys with our terrain  and atmospheric work outside and within the abandoned structures. This is important for us for the very essence of gameplay, allowing us to better portray larger spaces and give the sensation that our atmosphere and rooms are not safe without getting and keeping your head gear, weapons, and suit in good order.

Lee – Technical Director

The merge of the new AI behaviour system is almost completed. The next task will be to merge the latest release back in, which shouldn’t be too much of a problem. Once that is done we can start to fine tune the creature behaviours for the new areas we have.

Marcin – Designer

I’ve been busy with pretty much 1 but massive task, namely the second pass of the 3rd person player character. Lauren has created a massive pile of 3rd person animation with the basic setup, now it’s time to put it all together with all other mechanics into a cohesive whole. And there’s a lot, multiple walking and running cycles, different turns, jumps, and of course all attacks both ranged and melee.

Tristan – Senior Developer

This week I have been helping been helping out with some of the logic for converting modules to be weapons. I have also been helping out the designers with terrain in the level.

Ricky – Senior Developer

Onto the Objectives Manager save system which needs a bit of testing and fingers crossed will be completed. Aside from this testing, I’ve been working on some very big changes to our weapon system and ability to equip various items into slots. I’ll probably be stuck to this task for a while.

Joe – Environment Artist

Continued with re-shuffling of the inventory to accommodate changes for the hotbar. We’re trying to make things less convoluted and more obvious by making craftable items appear different to actual items that can be used within the player inventory.

Showing them in list/blueprint form should really add that extra level of clarity as well as making the other functions of a utility visible without being locked into ‘sub tabs’, i.e. item upgrade trees and weapon assembly UI.

Tom W – Designer

This week I’ve been working closely with Alex on some pre-visualisations of the Terrain for the new starting area, as well as retopologising Tom Lishmann’s sculpt for the base Male Character.

Lauren – Animator

This week I have been working with Marcin on the 3rd person animations and blueprint as well as continuing work on the opening sequence and the axe animations. I can’t wait to get hold of the new character meshes!

Alex – Designer

I’ve spent most of the last week finalising the modelling and texturing of the Transmitter Tower, one of the big hero pieces visible from the starting area. As well as that, I’ve worked with Tom W on generating some early designs/art for the new starting location.

Andy – Lead QA

I’ve been working on designs for the crafting on the player along with production planning with the team. Other than that I have been playing through the new structures and giving my feedback to the team.  

Jamie – Tester

I’ve been testing out some really cool things the guys have done so far and I’ve been giving some feedback on it all! Also this week I’ve been working with Andy on finding any new bugs and crashes within the newer builds of the game.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

July Development Update 2!

Greetings Pioneers!

Moving forward with development on the new areas, we have been adding more atmosphere, details, creepy sounds and general refinement of the gameplay. Enemies and reactions are being worked on to make them less relentless and easier to tackle using just melee alone.

John – Lead Designer

Been at the fantastic develop conference down in Brighton for the middle section of the week. Was wonderful to see some familiar faces and very nice to see friends of ours receive rewards for their hard work! Going to events like these just motivates myself and the team more to get the game completed.

Matt – Art Director

Working on some serious polish for the gameplay experience at the beginning with Marcin. Adding mechanical elements to the emergency exit door, which now features an axe that has been wedged in the mechanism.. very mysterious.

Lee – Technical Director

This week I have been continuing with the merge both from the Release stream and also my own stream where a lot of the AI has undergone a lot of change. This will probably introduce new bugs for Andy to find and write up for me.

Tristan – Senior Developer

This week I have been mostly away on my honeymoon part 1. Since I have been back I have been going over some things with designers regarding our drop items and drop item limits and designing a system with Marcin to cater for what we need.

Joe – Environment Artist

Worked with the team to come up with some quite substantial tweaks to the Tab Menu/Inventory screens and worked in some new visuals for the hotbar to supplement some upcoming functionality. Exciting!

Yves – Senior Developer

Been working on a few minor bugs to do with AI reactions to being hit, we’ve got a new component that’s going to hopefully help the designers make the characters react in a more realistic (as real as you can get for sci-fi monsters) way to impacts.

Ricky – Senior Developer

Few bits n bobs done in multiple areas this week. I added Inline crafting on the player’s crafting menu and let items crafted on the player automatically try adding to the inventory when complete. This eliminated the need for the crafting queue and gives a bit more space to see the schematics.

I have since been working on implementing the save system for Objectives managers, and starting to look at upcoming changes to how weapons are equipped and used. I’ll get implementing the UI for this next week.

Tom W – Designer

Finishing up the previsual work for our barren landscapes. This conforms with our terraforming mechanics which we’ll be prototyping for future releases. Moving onto working on our male game model and then further playtesting and tweaking the Dam environment.

Marcin – Designer

With a lot of the code coming together from the merge process, I’ve been spending my time combining together various systems relating to interaction with AI. Mostly my focus was on the feeling of the axe – the new melee weapon, and AI reactions to being hit with various attacks. We’ve revamped the physics reactions of enemies into a new system called a “stability component”.

Currently as the work is still in progress, it’s represented by secondary bar below health. We are saying goodbye to the “ragdoll or nothing” reactions. Now creatures can flinch, have their attacks interrupted, be pushed back, and eventually also “ragdoll” when all of the stability is gone. Some attacks are better at damaging, some at interrupting multiple foes at once, and some at sending enemies on a one way trip down off the edge of the world.

Alex – Designer

Working on unwraps and textures for our large antenna array asset, quite a lot of work has gone into making the detail match up with the rest of the transmitter area. Quite difficult when you’re working on something that is over 100 feet tall!

Lauren – Animator

Refining the impact audio has been satisfying, I never thought hitting different things and hearing different sounds could be so fun. Also, more creepy creature sounds and ambience have been put together this week, these will hopefully give players more warning when there are enemies about or approaching. Video coming soon!

Andy – Lead QA

Lots of back and forth for bug testing with the beginnings of our merge from our release stream. This basically involves us moving the bug fixes we’ve included on our previous steam release into our new work for the encounter locations.

Also we’re coming to the end of an internal sprint which means I’ll be busy organising up coming and continuing tasks going into next Monday!

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

July Development Update!

Greetings Pioneers!

This week we have been making more steady progress on our beautiful, virtual world of Pharus-7 and our new introduction to the game and story.

The abandoned bases are getting more heavily detailed, sound, lighting and atmosphere are being set up and more AI and loot have been placed to get a feel for the encounters we are developing.

See below for what we’ve each been up to in more detail:

John – Lead Designer

There’s been a whole bunch of production this past week that will culminate with a visit to Gamescom at the end of August. The new introduction is now getting there with a number of previous blockers removed or fixed and the core feedback we have had from community for quality-of-life changes are in. These include having “E” to interact, making the hotbar function in a more standard fashion and splitting out tool modules to work more like weapons within the inventory. Next it’s adding all of the pickup and drop items as loot in the feature bases.

Matt – Art Director

Running through a lot of refinements with the guys this week as well as additional detail work for placement of assets and item pickups (especially in our Silo Facility). The lighting in our feature bases has had a lot of tweaking done on the way and it’s beginning to really inject the atmosphere we want  in certain rooms.

Lee – Technical Director

This week I have been busy trying to merge our perforce release stream back into our main working stream. Due to how long it took to get this last release out the streams have diverged quite a bit, so it has been a bit time consuming and very boring!

Tristan – Senior Developer

Tristan is getting married tomorrow! Huge congrats to Tristan and Sarah.

Yves – Senior Developer

I’ve been working with the team to fix one final bug with the new axe not being able to be used on foliage, we have our own foliage manager which switches out static mesh instances for actors when they’ve been attacked, our axe needs to tell it to do it’s job.

Tom L – Character Artist

Finished off the mesh work and texture bakes for the game model of the female base character!

Ricky – Senior Developer

Started Working on HUD and UI changes to our weapons system to allow all 10 slots to be used by any weapon or consumable and whatever. A few loose ends have turned up when dropping items which have been looked into and will get sorted soon.

Lauren – Animator

This week we have been focusing on audio for impact effects, improving the current hit and footstep sounds and creating new sounds for hitting a variety of new surfaces such as concrete, rubber, glass and tarmac.

With more surface types to play with now we have the ability to create more sound and particle effects for these surfaces. So when you hit vastly different looking things, you will get different effects, no more alien hives sounding exactly like the aliens and alien trees sounding like rocks, with their own ‘surface type’ they can sound different now, woot!

Joe – Environment Artist

This week I created the final few initial meshes we needed to give us the full visual variety for the Silo/Lab location. Next we need to look at tarting it all up if we’re happy with how it feels!

 

 

Alex – Designer

This week I have been adding in different weapons and testing how they play through the Transmitter tower, tweaking AI spawns, making sure it’s not too easy or too hard. Additionally I’ve been doing another pass of modelling of the relay tower, moved it’s location slightly which had a few knock on effects that had to be dealt with, but all of the extra work was worth it to improve the player’s experience.

Tom W – Designer

I’ve been doing some really exciting visualization and concept work this week, that may change the overall look of the game, the aim is to improve the atmosphere and aesthetics overall of Pharus 7, making it a more beautiful but more arid, desolate and intimidating place that you will want to explore.

As always work in the Dam has also continued, i’ve been working with the AI to make sure that they feel a bit more clever and make better decisions based on the situation they find themselves in.

 

Andy – Lead QA

Had a load of great feedback from the release last week and spent some time chatting to the community about the game in general. Few bugs came up with our latest build in multiplayer which Yves has been looking into for me. Had loads of help from the team’s newest member Jamie with reproducing bugs, catching new bugs and confirming fixes.

The guys have been smashing the work with the new content this week. New audio, melee system tweaks, harvesting foliage with the axe, player interactions in the new structures, tweaks to prop location in the drop pod, concepts/previs for a complete overhaul of the environment, new female pioneer low res character model, populating the new ancient eden kit silo structure. It’s been a busy week.

Jamie – Bugs tester

My first few weeks working with these guys has been amazing and I’m enjoying work more than life itself! This week I’ve been working with Andy, an amazing character whom I dearly love,  towards finding and reporting bugs on the newest builds of the game. I’ve also been looking through the steam forums and responding to issues posted by the community. This games making stuff is GREAT! Wooo!   

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

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Eden Star is a product of the GamesLab West Midlands programme, developed by Creative England and supported by the Regional Growth Fund.

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