July Development Update 4!

Greetings Pioneers!

Blog it! We’ve been making more progress with the AI, getting all of Lee’s new AI code into the game, which has temporarily broken things, but we’re still moving in the right direction! Thanks Lee <3 This should allow for greater flexibility and varieties of behaviour for our in world encounters.

Our new characters are getting textures and new customisability setup put on them, with the intent to allow for user defined colouring.

See details of what we’ve been up to below:

John – Lead Designer

Working in tandem with Andy to get the guys moving the content into the game. Main priority is working through the planned changes to crafting and environmental systems with the developers.

Matt – Art Director

I’ve been working with the guys on the new environment art direction as well as creating our template for customisable character colours. At the moment there are several different coloured areas you can define, including the base undersuit, it’s padded areas and defined trim patterns. Our aim is to also include different surface patterns as well as custom logos that players can interchange.

Lee – Technical Director

This week I have managed to integrate the new AI behaviour system into our Main branch. Now it’s just a matter of giving it some play testing to iron out any bugs.

Ricky – Senior Developer

Continuing work on the UI hotbar 1-10 slots being usable by all items. When this is finished one cool thing it will allow is modules to handle more functionality each.

So for example instead of blast being left click and grab/mine being right click, each one of these modules will be able to control their own functionality for each key. The blast module will be able to use left or right click, or tertiary fire in it’s own way.

Joe – Environment Artist

This week I worked with the other arty-types on improving the TabMenu layout. I also cast my eye over the awesome stuff Tom & Al are cooking up. Mm mm mm, tasty. Not sure about all the sand though; it’s coarse and rough and irritating.

Marcin – Designer

Lee’s integrated some very important code work, which I’ve been waiting for to continue working on the melee combat for both the player character and the AI. Earlier this week I’ve had spectacular time filling out animation spreadsheets so we can keep track of which animations we have, which we don’t, which are essential, which aren’t and most importantly which ones we can re-use in multiple places. Spreadsheets are life, spreadsheets are love. More recently I’ve been putting together the defensive side of melee combat, namely block, parry, and stagger mechanics. I’m on the second iteration now, going strong, working out a good formula for parry window timings.

 

Tom W – Designer

I’ve spent the last week experiencing the joys of working with World Machine, generating all the lovely new pretties for our new starting area’s landscape. As well as that, I’ve been building new shaders for our rocks and landscape, allowing them to blend together seamlessly as seen in some recent game releases. Really excited to show off the work Alex and I have been doing!

Alex – Designer

This week I’ve been a busy beaver hard at work making particle effects for the new revamped starting area of the game. Dust, Sand, Clouds and Tumble-weeds are just some of the new cool things you can expect to see in the near future.

Lauren – Animator

This week has been another week of refining animations for the melee and working with Marcin on the new player locomotion system. We now have a better idea of where we are at with it and the animations left to do. There has also been discussions on the AI now that we have Lee’s work starting to be put into the main branch. I’ve been looking into references for AI animations for various behaviours such as seeking cover and stalking the player.

Andy – Lead QA

I’ve been working on designs for new melee weapons, meeting regarding the 3rd person player movement and design meetings and reviews of the new terrain pass we are working on.

I also had to sit in on a web seminar for Lee. The audio was rubbish and the content was stuff we already know. I have a sneaky suspicion that Lee knew all this beforehand and was just trolling me.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix

 

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

 

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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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