Category Archives: Progress

April Development Update 3!

Greetings Pioneers!

We are continuing to refine the starting area this week with fields of crashed debris, plus our arena style battle zones are being designed, which can only be described as mini horde survival events. Meanwhile more AI bugs have been fixed and a new tactical map design is taking shape.

Here’s what we’ve been up to in more detail:

John – Lead Designer

The sun has come out over the studio, it is the beginning of British summer time. Instilling new life and vigor in people, which is a perfect explanation for why the team are glowing balls of sunshine. Achooo, and oh yeah tree pollen.. but no fear, the work to get our update completed continues.

Matt – Art Director

Started modelling some of the block out props we’ve designed into the Drop Pod, hoping to have something to show next week for these pieces.

On another note I’ve been discussing and gathering some ideas/art & design materials for our lootable wreckage components with Tom Whittemore. Most notably our new RMD glove models are now in the game and have vastly improved the feeling of being sealed into a suit to protect you from the toxic air of the surrounding environment.

Lee – Technical Director

I’ve continued with debugging some of the recent changes we have made to both the way AI attacks are performed and the way they turn. I’ve also been working with Lauren to try and find a better solution to our ragdoll issues which will also work well for multiplayer.

Marcin – Designer

From next week I will be implementing a new map and player info system. The improvements to look forward to are zooming in and out, panning, various level of detail at various zoom levels, additional information in the form of new icons, waypoints, objective markers, and more.

There will be a lot of work involved with this, but I am really looking forward to revamping that mechanic. The first step will be to create a tool that will let us produce accurate textures representing the world. It would be impossible to manually edit the textures with every world tweak so we’re going to need a clever solution that can do it for us.

Ricky – Senior Developer

Bixing fugs and sorting out some more of the design for the tactical map system and it’s accompaniment to the compass and hud marker systems to boot.

Tom H – Designer

This week I have been continuing to design the Silo Horde battle, ensuring that each detail of this fight makes for an intense and rewarding experience. Balancing the key parts of the fight such as enemy spawners and wave timings, I am aiming to create a horde fight that will be memorable and also replayable as you guys explore through the world!

Be sure to check every rafter, corner and hive for creatures as they endlessly spawn and attack you from every angle whilst you protect the Eden Kit! I’ll leave you with some updated lighting work in the upper section of the Silo..

OG Tom – Designer

This week I have been continuing to plan designs for large sections of the wilderness so there are lots of nooks and crannies to explore. In particular I have been planning out how wreckage can be used within the world.

The current wreckage and debris are effectively mining nodes to give the player scrap metal and other components and are generated around the world. The results of this weren’t the best so we decided to add more context to wreckages within the world. I have been planning a wreckage kit so all the designers can start building wreckages as mini levels for the player to explore.

Sam – Concept Artist

I’m back! This week I’ve been working on our level 2 (higher end) workbench, described as “a much more high tech and purpose built version”, which you can see above. Since I had already done plenty of preliminary work for the level 1 version, this design process for this turned out a relatively speedy one, and though this current image is not necessarily the final design, I expect to be designing more new gameplay items like this next week.

Lauren – Lead Animator

This week I have been focusing on ragdoll, recovery and death for the stalker with some hurdles to overcome. Our AI have the ability to recover from ragdoll if they are not dead, so we have to use some clever trickery so that an AI ragdolling from being hit by one player, ends up in the same location from other players perspective without creating too much of an overhead for the server.

While our initial system of making the character limbs go floppy and making the (replicated) capsule roll around works fine for AI that have rounded shaped bodies, the elongated torso of the stalker didn’t look quite right. So it’s still going to take some tweaking, along with fixing a combination of bugs, but it’s getting there!

I’ve also been making a start on a new ‘makeshift’ weapon which I hope to show you more of next week…

Andy – Lead QA

Believe it or not I’m on a break ladies and gents, its been a long time since I’ve had any longish period of time off. So as you do.. When you get this very rare opportunity.. You sit in your pants playing games.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

April Development Update 2!

Greetings Pioneers!

This week there has been more progress in our new areas with cliffs, roads and rocks being placed along with general tidy-ups and further placement of minable assets. The RMD (Remote Manipulation Device) Tool has been getting an upgrade, or rather a downgrade with a visual difference between basic and upgraded meshes on your right arm. Also the AI are being debugged and refined as the new optimised systems get implemented.

Here’s what we’ve been up to in more detail:

John – Lead Designer

Been making some really exciting arrangements for the guys here at the studio. We’re looking at bringing more people into the fold which should help improve drastically improve the quality of our upcoming content.

Matt – Art Director

Main focus has been getting the different upgraded mesh version of Mata-Tool (RMD) weapon properly fitted to the male and female first person arms, which is now looking the business. In the level itself I’ve been assisting the guys with adjustments and planning design passes of lackluster areas where there isn’t enough to do within a certain distance.

Lee – Technical Director

Debugging and optimisation has been my main focus for this week. After finally moving a lot of blueprint functionality into code, I have been testing it all and putting it through its paces to make sure it all works as expected. I’ve also been able to make a few more optimisation improvements as I have gone along. One extra bonus this week was adding a little workaround to the garbage collector to prevent it from using up lots of memory on dedicated servers.

Joe – Lead Artist

Meshes and icons for some of the new craftable components! These are some early game items, see if you can guess what they are 😉

Marcin – Designer

Implementing the bar for the deterioration bars that will encompass the majority of things you craft. I’m sorry yes, this means things will break in your hands, but that’s ok.. Just make a new one! The good thing with the bar is you’ll at least be able to see when its about to break..

Tom ‘Wahey’ Whaley

Making additions to our rock sculpting tool sets with spline rocks! I’ve been reworking and prettifying our terrain with a tier style system that helps us players better understand  where they can and can’t walk, it also makes for a much clearer understanding of where mineral types can be found.

Also I’ve just about finished a tastey ice material for frozen surfaces!

OG Tom  Whittemore – Designer

This week I have been world building! With our great new tiered terrain layout we can finally start designing and building large parts of the world. I have been drawing up designs for some of the areas out in the wilds to so those of you that are explorers will have plenty of hidden secret to find. Sculpting the terrain and placing in the larger geometry pieces, like rock formations, will allow us to find out how exploration feels and fine tune it.

Tom H – Designer

This week I have been making further changes to the Silo area, filling out these sections with more architecture and creatures. The main changes made have been to the large Silo area in which most of the changes have been to do with lighting the area effectively so that players can make their way to this section and explore all the Silo has to offer. I have also started designing the horde mode battle that will take place in the Silo and will be fleshing out this battle more next week!

Lauren – Lead Animator

This week has been a bit of a mix of tasks, while continuing to improve the stalker animations I have also been setting up the new Tool meshes. Now we start player’s off with a broken version of the tool that you will need to repair before you can use.

Andy – Lead QA

This week I have been working with Tom on the terrain tweaks and cliff rock placement. I have also been reviewing the changes made to the placement of assets with in the starting drop pod.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

April Development Update!

Greetings Pioneers!

Happy Friday! This week the new workbench has transformed out of the 2D concept into glorious 3D. Also our player arms have been updated to match with the new suit models, plus the always sneaky Stalker has been coming together with the new AI code.

Here’s what we’ve been up to:

John – Lead Designer

Mainly been doing the rounds, engaging with the work the guys have been showing off this week. Giving them quite extensive bits of feedback so that we’re all singing from the same hymn sheet as we begin to bind this beast together!

Matt – Art Director

For the majority of the time I’ve been focused on bringing our new work bench to life. This is our first step towards tier items that allow you craft the ‘next level’ or valuable compounds and building parts. The bench is meant to be something relatively basic in comparison to the top tear engineering visuals you see with upgraded turrets.

Lee – Technical Director

I’ve finally got the majority of functionality out of blueprint into code for the AI. This should give us a nice performance gain. I’m now looking at the AI rotations because we seem to have a few bugs with some of the code base that already exists. I also want to try and polish up some of the perception functionality now we have AI inside buildings and corridors.

Tristan – Lead Developer

This week I have been helping out with the direction for the melee implementation with Carlos, Yves and Marcin. It’s looking pretty good and we are going with something more modular so that we can easily adjust functionality and make sure we get it feeling fun and rewarding to play.

Tom H – Designer

These past couple of weeks I have been redesigning sections of the Silo and Eden Kit Facility areas. The design of these areas will allow players to explore and underground facility that has been overrun with mites and hunters.

 By designing these areas to have multiple entrances and various routes to take to the silo players will be able to explore these areas at their own pace and in their own manner and discover the secrets this abandoned Silo has to offer.

Captain Thomas – 3D Wizz Kid

I’ve had fun showing the guys the beauty of Substance Painter, which is going to lead to lots of beautiful new models for you all to enjoy!

As well as that, I’ve been slowly but surely reworking the opening terrain area, ready to hand off to some of the other devs so I can get to work doing the final polish on our cuddly, loving, generally adorable Hunters and Splintermites.

Carlos – Developer

I’ve been busy re-working the new melee system after discussions with Tristan, Yves and Marcin, this modular approach should allow us to build new melee weapons with mix and match functionality!

Lauren – Lead Animator

This week many discussions have taken place regarding AI and our priorities going forward with how we want them to behave. Now that we have Lee’s newly optimised AI code to hand we can start to refine the behaviours and get them feeling right. The stalker animations are still in progress but we now have a nice throw attack to add to the mix. I tried to include a gif but he has a new bug and no longer spawns projectiles, alas hopefully next week we can show you a video of him in the level 🙂

I’ve also had a chance to revamp the 1st person arms to update them with the new character meshes, a few weighting and material tweaks still to do but it’s getting there! (screenshot WIP)

Jamie – QA  

This week I’ve been testing out the new makeshift crafting system and I’ve been playing through the updated locations in the game. I’ve also been testing the latest build of the game to find bugs and crashes in both singleplayer and multiplayer.  

Andy – Lead QA

I have been looking into the necessity of a few of the pending features, clearing off boards and putting together estimates for John.

From there I have been investigating the crashes we have been having when AI kill the player, looking into the melee rework and evaluating the alterations to the HUD.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix