July Development Update 4

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Greetings Pioneers!

Lots of new stuff to show off this week, from pretties to creepies. There’s been plenty of good ground work on the survival mechanics as we’re well into testing the initial stages of balancing.

We’re proud to say we have a dozen new creatures to add into the game in the upcoming release with an all new flocking behaviour for certain fauna types. As you may of figured out already, we’re very excited to see the world come alive once we have everything in place!

Here’s the breakdown on exactly what we’ve been doing this week:

John – Lead Designer

SO… this is the long wait… We are working really hard to get the Alpha of the new world out to you within the next 4 weeks.

The Survival system is now in and beginning it’s 1st balancing pass, the new Modular Weapon System is now being implemented (remember, it’s taken a long time to prep for this with the procedural animation system and getting all of the weapon parts working together as we wanted – I for one and seriously excited about this!)

The initial 3 armour sets are now in the game and are just having their 1st pass on their unlockable abilities placed on them, and finally, the first (4) group of new creatures are going in next week to breathe life into the new world. I’m really excited.

I’m just working through the current objectives that we want to place into the game and have been organising the designs of the Loot system that will also be started next week. Excited/stressed = the same thing!! 🙂  

Matt – Art Director

After getting one of our colony bases working for testing at the start of the week I’ve been dedicated to finishing off two new utilities which are essential for the break down of our craft-able components and items. Here’s the work in progress results so far:

FabricatorWIP

WaterPurifierWIP

Lee – Technical Director

I have continued with the work I was doing last week to do with group behaviour/movement. It should be finished by the end of today and ready for testing next week. I’ve also been taking a look at the new creatures I will be working on from next week too.

Tristan – Senior Developer

This week i have been catching up with the dev team and working on production with John after being away. Dev wise I have also been finishing off some dormancy work to help improve network performance as well as started looking into the implementation side of the modular weapons system to try and integrate it with the current logic we have.

Marcin – Designer

Items, items everywhere. I’ve spent pretty much the entire week putting together armour piece items for 3 starting sets, as well as doing another pass on food and consumables.

The armours still need their crafting recipes added and actual stat bonuses tweaked, but they can already be worn and are quite comfy. The consumables require a lot of balancing so that’s what I a doing right now, but I am fairly happy with the way they feel already, minus a few bugs. I’ll have to keep it short today, plenty to do.

Joe – Environment Artist

More UI stuff this week – specifically I’ve been finishing visual concepts for the new HUD (thanks for your feedback by the way!), the Structure details panel, Build placement panel, Interaction pop-ups, Armour/equipment and the Progression/Unlocks screen. Not all of that will make sense quite yet but rest assured we’re working hard on supporting some exciting upcoming features with a clear and concise User Interface 🙂

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In between all that I’ve fixed a few issues with the level and helped with getting it ready for all the new exciting mechanics that are on the way…

Tom – Character Artist

The vulture is coming! Kakkaaa!

Ricky – Developer

Player avatar/Armour column on the UI Menu. I made it so, similar to weapons along the bottom of the menu, you can drag drop armour pieces into relevant slots. Started work on the  redesign of the HUD to achieve unicorns… I mean unification of the systems and visual style, aswell as creating more modular systems where possible. Squished a few bugs along the way too.

Lauren – Animator

This week I’ve been continuing work on the creature animations for our new world. This other critter we have needs a proper name. I’ve already imported him in as Crusty3 (as he’s one of the three neutral crustaceans we’re working on putting in for the next release) so please help me find a more suitable name before Marcin unleashes his rage!

Crusty3Anims2

Thank you for the suggestions on the first crustacean we previewed the other week. Click here to vote on the name suggestions you like best and add your own! Crusty McCrustyFace here we come 😉

Yves – Senior Developer

I have continued on with implementing our new armour system with Marcin as well as a new save system to go along with it. I have also been debugging our base spawning logic for Matt. Hope you enjoy it all when it’s released.

Simone – Concept Artist

This week I’ve been working on multiple things as well as making final changes to the crocodile design. One of the concepts that I’ve been working on with Matt this week is a portable Fabricator that will allow the player to fabricate some objects while their out and about exploring!

We wanted a concept that is small enough to be placed on the table inside the base as well as placing it on the floor and we have created a final design, it just needs a little bit of colour! The other task this week was to continue work on the consumable icons and with the feedback so far I will be working to narrow down what concepts are right for each consumable – now to add in some sweets!

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Andy – Lead QA

Monday to Thursday we had a lad going work experience with us so I got a little help with the testing, and according to John he made a mean brew. I’ve also been working some more with Marcin on the survival stats. We’ve attempted to strip them back a little to get them to an MVP pass sooner. It’s difficult as we kept coming up with cool new things we wanted to add.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

July Development Update 3

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Greetings Pioneers!

So there’s been some heavy re-working of the game systems going on, all to suit the full implementation of our survival mechanics. A major overhaul to the HUD user interface is one of those aspects which John and Joe have been mainly focusing on. More utilities are underway to allow splitting out of different item/mineral types, and plentiful testing in the new map has allowed us to fix some major issues with it’s performance.

We’ve also had a chance to update our company show reel! So if you fancy looking at some fast moving images and a preview of the upcoming weapon system then check it out.

Now to what everyone has been upto this week:

John – Lead Designer

I have worked with Marcin and Lee on AI designs for group and fight/flight behaviour which should really unify the way that non-corrupted creatures act in the world. This should allow us to create better designs to implement reactive, stalking or investigative behaviour, meaning that when you first arrive on Pharus, you won’t be swarmed, but instead you may be stalked before being taken apart!

I have also worked through the HUD and UI designs with Ricky and Joe in order to get the full survival mechanics and new reactive reticle designs into the pipeline. We have finalised the creature list for alpha which includes 14 walkers, 2 flyers and 7 underwater creatures, not including the current enemy types.

The armour system is now nailed down and I have been making sure that we unify the upgrade systems to support ALL components in the game. Weapon animations have been checked for their second pass and are now ready to go into the new modular weapon system when Tristan returns.

Biomes are now also designed to allow for status effects fall-off so that you don’t get instantly Corrupted when moving from a clear to a spore infested biome. The new utilities have also been finalised for the next release, including Fabricator, Medical Unit, Food Purifier, Armoury, Refinery, Filtration Unit, Water Tank, Advanced Generator. Next week I’m finalising the UI/HUD design and working on finalising the consumable for the next release!

Matt – Art Director

More utilities are alas becoming relevant to the way the game will play, so I’ve been focusing on developing three of them. One of which is a Refinery, to cater for all your pioneers mining and refining needs. Next week I’ll be moving ahead with a water filtration unit. For now here is the (near finished) Model for the Refinery.

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Lee – Technical Director

I have managed to get the audio aspect of our perception component working with our AI this week. I’ve also been working towards adding group behaviours to the AI to allow herds of creatures, but to also allow for more squad like tactics.

Tristan – Senior Developer

Out of town this week. Enjoying a rather large Pina Colada and long walks in the rain. I’ve gone back to my roots, bathed in the milk of 10,000 adders, stole the princess of Pennsylvania’s golden brooch, sailed to the grand canyon, got ran over by an ox and survived to tell the tale,

Yves – Senior Developer

Working on implementation of our survival stats system then moved onto player armour and managed to get an early working version together that will be ready for internal playtesting soon!

Joe – Environment Artist

This week I’ve been working with John on getting the new HUD designs for survival up to a final pass  (I did also find a spare couple of hours to start on a new creature for our Forest and Grassland biomes!). Check out some of the designs we’ve come up with below, we’d love to hear what you guys think.

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Ricky – Developer

The week started off with a movement of the temporary Exp system over to a new more universal stat effect system.

I also managed to get some quality time removing old stuff, like, you know that feeling when you’ve had a large stack of Splintermites carefully balanced for years on top of each other, then you remove the bottom few finally because they’re  getting old and isn’t used, and the rest surprisingly still they hover in midair unaffected, that’s quite like removing an old system like the inventory version 1 and getting to delete 10,000 nodes at once but the game still functioned without errors beyond expectations.

Marcin – Designer

I have a lot of systems planned to be included in the next release, so I am a pretty busy guy at the moment. This week alone, on top of gathering data for the next pass of the consumables, I was designing the armour system, with all the considerations to make sure that making the choice between different armours is relevant and interesting, unlike the choice of building material we had in the past. Speaking of the building materials, I have also been designing new stats for them.

Since damage types were not interactive enough, I’ve decided to switch the stats towards their role in the building, such as structure support, weight, deterioration resistance, durability and style. Also as a next step for the survival stats, we’ve been looking into how we can handle environmental effects, such as Oxygen, smoothly and immersively, and last but not least I’ve done some extra work on the scopes for the upcoming modular weapon system. Like I said, there is a lot going on right now.

 

Simone – Concept Artist

This week I have been working on colour concepts for the crocodile and small fish swarm, as well as changes to the shark concept. Also, as we are adding in consumables to the game I have started work on icons for these objects and will be working with the team to create final designs. So look out for some tasty noms in the future!

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Andy – Lead QA

This week I’ve been working on balancing the stat/survival system along with playing in the new map “Pharus 7”. We have also made changes to the Apex rocks so they will now dematerialise 30 seconds after they last took damage meaning that players will now be able to harvest pesky rocks that are blocking them from building and build over them. You’re welcome!

 

As you may of noticed we’re missing a fair few members of the team in this week’s blog post. They’ve been out of office this week so we’ll bring all you wonderful people up to date with where they are at when they’re back.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

July Development Update 2

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Greetings Pioneers!

This week we have been testing the new map along with new consumables as part of the upcoming survival mechanics expansion. That’s food you gather from the plants as you harvest that you can then eat!

The food won’t all be good however and some will leave you with a bad aftertaste and a certain amount of ‘Corruption’ which affects your stats and XP gain and requires treatments to counter. We’ve also been continuing work on new critters for the world which will also have consumable drops of their own.

See what we’ve been up to below:

John – Lead Designer

As well as organising production for the implementation of our new survival system, I’ve also taken a few days out of the studio to go down to Develop conference in Brighton, which has been great!

Matt – Art Director

Amongst creating decorative objects for the inside of Pioneers bases, i’ve been developing some rough models for key utility systems for the upcoming survival gameplay. Amongst these are a water tank, refinery, and water purifier. See if you can guess which one is which ;D …

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Lee – Technical Director

So this week I’ve been working on implementing some group behaviours for our AI. This will eventually mean groups of AI are able to work together to overcome an objective. I’ve also been adding some new functionality to the editor to allow our designers to update our own octree navigation system from the click of a button.

Tristan – Senior Developer

This week I have been working on implementing network dormancy into our game and looking into other ways we can improve our replications times.

Lauren – Animator

These past two weeks I’ve been continuing work on the modular weapons animations along with animating up new critters to scuttle around the new world. This one is a small neutral creature for the starting grasslands areas. I can’t tell if he’s more cute or gross but he needs a name so suggestions welcome! 🙂

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Yves – Senior Developer

Yves is on holiday galavanting or something. Prior to galavanting he has been working on a stat management system along with a number of the survival stats we have had lined up. Hopefully you’ll be enjoying these soon.

Marcin – Designer

Last week’s hotfix release finally freed us to pour straight into the game all those systems and big changes we’ve been cooking in the background for so long now: the new map, the progression system, survival mechanics, food and water, etc. The map is looking pretty good, but we’re still working to make sure it’s got all the creatures it’s supposed to.

I’ve spent pretty much an entire week implementing new food items and treatments are next on my list.  All those addition still require a massive amount of polish, so that’s what I am doing, because I’m… also… polish. 😀 See what I did there? Huh? Anyone? Sigh.

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Anyway, enjoy a few very early screenshot of some of the upcoming features: first pass of the survival stats UI, placeholder UI for progression, and placeholder meshes for food item. Have a great weekend, everyone!

Ricky – Developer

Now there’s a bare system in place for progression and statistics I’ve been sorting through and displaying them upon the HUD and UI. This involved sorting through a few issues with it too where you wouldn’t die (I know, should I even fix that right?) and the consumables were not infact, despite their honourable title the “consumable” were not… get this… in fact… being consumed.

Joe – Environment Artist

The past couple of weeks have mainly been spent working on the art for a big new creature to populate our forest biomes – the ‘Hog’! Roughly Juggernaut sized so you probably won’t want to get in his way…

Hawg

Once I finished up the Hog, I jumped onto fixing a bunch of bugs with the new map, some of which were pretty major. I’m now looking at our HUD redesign for survival and progression.

Tom – Character Artist

I’ve been working away at some sculpting changes to our vulture like creature before creating the game ready version!

Simone – Concept Artist

Over the past few weeks I’ve been busy with creature texture concepts for the Vulture and Lizard, making changes to a few different creature concepts, as well as creating orthographics for our new little crustaceans that will be walking around the world!

There has also been the addition of décor items that pioneers will be able to place in their bases that needed to be painted over to add details and colours schemes that we have been working on, as well as creating a holographic style sign that will make it easy to label your base’s rooms!

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Andy – Lead QA

This week we managed to get the new map to test and although there are still a few kinks to iron out it is running really well. I have also been working with Marcin and Jamie to test the new player stats and how to best balance them.  

Big thanks to Jamie who has been doing work experience with us in the studio for a few weeks, he’s been very committed to the job. I physically shed a tear as he left this afternoon.. goodbye young Padawan.

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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