February Development Update 2!

Greetings Pioneers!

More delicious progress has been made this week, with vehicles receiving the texturing treatment and our new Huntermite creature has had more or their bespoke animations and attacks added. There are still a fair few bugs with the AI that have emerged with the new pooling mechanic and other new features but once those are resolved we will be in a much better position for stable release.

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

John – Lead Designer

The organisation of the project and the overall design as a whole as you guys may already know, is my main concern. To keep up momentum we’ve got a few more designers in house to push this update forward, so it should be exciting to see their work going forward! It’s important to keep a fresh perspective and enthusiasm as we implement quite extensive revisions from our past release feedback. 

Matt – Art Director

On a practical basis I’ve focused my attention on getting some critical assets in place, one of these has been a destructible loot create/item. Both the asset work and adapting functionality that exists in the game to get something practical to use for the design team. Otherwise its business as normal with meetings about the different areas of the levels, but I’m especially excited seeing the new creature work, which is starting to feel and look exceptional.

Lee – Technical Director

I managed to complete the work to stop AI from being garbage collected. Now we are able to spawn what we need at the start of the game and pool them until needed. This is a good performance gain for the server now. I’ve also fixed up a few bugs with spawners now they are starting to be used more often in scripted situations in the world.

Tristan – Lead Developer

This week I have been expanding on the melee logic and making it a bit more generic so we can add more melee weapon types. I have also been going over some of the AI work with Lee for more optimisations.

Butch – 3D Artist

Let the textures flow through you. I’ve been blasting through giving the transport its first coat of beauty. Will update everyone next week as we anticipate it to be finished and in game soon!

Marcin – Designer

This week I was able to get back to our beloved AI and actually implement a few more behaviours, which we all eagerly awaited. First of all we have the investigate the sound behaviour. The AI is longer clairvoyant as to who or what made a sound and will now have to go and see if it can find that out. Enemies are able to hear gunshots, explosions and calls for aid of their fellow aliens and react accordingly. There are still a few bugs to iron out but that’s now part of their repertoire.

Additionally I’ve been working on the “turning on the spot” behaviour, for which Lauren has been making animations. Although fairly simple in concept turning behaviours are deceivingly difficult to do right. We should know, because this isn’t our first attempt either, so we are taking a slow and diligent approach this time.

Tom W – Designer

I’ve had a fun week working on the Oxygen/Atmosphere mechanics for the game. Farting around on an alien planet without a helmet will have dire consequences for our pioneers! *Cough Prometheus*

Sam – Concept Artist

Hello everyone! This week you’ll be getting your very first peek at the “Zombie”, a slow-moving yet intimidating creature that serves as a mutated transition between the colonist human and full-blown stalker forms. We’re off to a strong start with our initial designs, but are still looking to push the boundaries even further, past the barrier of your stereotypical walkers from the big screen. behind the scenes I have also been working on a final render of the Hunter to go alongside the Mite’s. See you next week!

Tom Whitt – Designer

This week I’ve been continuing to iterate on the drop pod lay to make sure the introduction to the game gives you all the information you need to get going. It’s a slow process and we have several reviews a week but we want to make this absolutely perfect when its finished!

Tom H – Designer

Hi All! I’m new (yes another Tom). Mainly paper designs and getting my head around the current design for the project. I’m aiming to refine and strengthen the gameplay formula we’re using for the different areas on the island.

Lauren – Lead Animator

This week I have been animating more of the Huntermite’s actions and reactions to make him feel unique. With its own set of attacks and idle animations and refinements to the balancing values, he is starting to feel a lot more how we would like him. I have also been working on one-off turning animations for the new turning behaviour. This will not be our first implementation of turning mechanics but we are hoping this time to have a behaviour that will work the same across all AI while still allowing for various types of turn.

I have also added a turn to the stagger animations so that he turns automatically towards the attack direction after playing a stagger animation, this already helps him feel a lot more responsive than what we had previously as he now moves out of range of the player’s melee, forcing them to move in order to re-engage. This is the stagger will play after the stability of the Huntermite is below a certain threshold, not instantly as shown here.

Andy – Lead QA

Myself and Jamie continued with our testing of multiplayer this week focusing on server stability.
We also got to test the initial implementation of the Huntermite, fixes to the inventory and re-implementation of the “sell” functionality.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix