June Development Update 2!

Greetings Pioneers!

More systems have been coming together this week with a new fuel stat that the player will need to manage along with their oxygen, sustenance and stamina. The fuel will be less of a worry at the start of the game, and will deplete slowly when your oxygen scrubbers are in action, giving a balance between stats to manage in inside vs outside environments. Later in the game as you obtain energy weapons, that statistic will come into play more as you manage your firepower vs fuel, based on the situation you are encountering and the fuel cells in your inventory!

The objectives system has been reviewed with the first implementation of the support for the first campaign of the game being submitted. Now the global objectives manager is being developed to allow the designers to handle and trigger in-game and map events and encounters…

In the world of level design we have been making great strides to populate the world with minables and things for you can destroy, polishing more pretties and tidying up the AI and pick-up placement in the initial area.

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

John – Lead Designer

Still so much to do! But we’re getting there 🙂

So after promising that i’d update the blog with the todo list for release, I failed last week miserably and for that I apologise! In actual fact I did update it, but the excuse is effectively “my dog ate my homework” levels of lame… so here it is this week instead!

– Fuel in buildings
– Power Connections between Generators and Turrets/Utilities
– Revision of Life and Death (What saves and loads Vs what’s lost)
– Non-Navigational Zone Mechanics (How we block off the edge of the map that you can’t get to with a story based component)
– Destructible Structures new assets, setup and utilities (Weapon Display Rack)
– AI refinement with combat (continued…)
– Character Selection 1st pass

Matt – Art Director

Fully implemented new door facades with their retracting arm mechanism to the ‘Cryo Chambers’ in the drop pod. This makes the space feel more functional and a little more claustrophobic than it was previously. Numerous lighting tweaks and changes have been made to polish the space more from a gameplay and visual perspective, also including another pass on the waking up of the players Pioneer character.

Lee – Technical Director

I’ve managed to get the new AI reaction system into a state that we can start testing it now. I’ve also been fixing a few more navigation bugs where I can. Just when you think you have got them all, someone else manages to find one, it seems and endless task.

Tristan – Lead Developer

This week I have been fixing up melee bugs and making tweaks to the system as the designers try to create different melee weapon types.

Yves – Senior Developer

I’m currently working on the allowing change of environment to be dynamically done at runtime, so things like area oxygen can be changed by things like terraforming type modules . Also I’ve been working allowing foliage to be “used”, this will for players to directly interact with things like bushes.

Ricky – Lead Developer

Sifted through and fixed several bugs with consumables and melee weapons, teething problems as to be expected with new functionality. Consumables were being consumed twice and equip anims not playing, that sort of thing.

Carlos – Developer

I’ve implemented a nice new shiny audio manager that now allows us to control audio levels through the UI, this has been broken for a few versions of the engine when we upgraded! I’ve also started of fixing bugs that have come around from updating the engine!

Joe – Lead Artist

I’ve been standing over the shoulders of the art team being nosy and reviewing all the awesome new artwork going in! I’ve also been working on unifying and implementing an in-world version of our UI, which will be used for flavour and player interaction. I also fixed a bunch of UI bugs and added the new fuel/power stat to the HUD.

Captain Tom – Designer

Had great fun modelling lights, as well as blueprinting them up so our other lovely designers can aim them at points of interest wherever we decide to use them.

On top of that, I’ve finally started to sink my teeth into our various AI characters, in the aim of giving them some tender loving before you guys get your hands on them in the update!

Marcin – Designer

There has been a lot of tying up of loose ends for me these past few days. The objective system has passed its reviews and that alone has un-blocked a lot of tasks we had on our plate and can move forward with now. I’ve added the holographic effect to represent a consumable item you have equipped and Tom S., Joe and myself have also reviewed and tweaked the interaction markers that were recently added to make sure they all work as designed.

We are in the process of fixing a few bugs with those. After all of that is done, next on the agenda for me is looking into encounters and hooking them up to objectives system, so that relevant encounter information can be displayed on the HUD as you are participating in them.

OG Tom W – Designer

This week has been a real mixed bag as I’ve been reviewing many different design systems with the team here, creating new destructibles, placing mining nodes around the world and tackling design issues as they come up. Specifically, the destructible assets are using a new implementation with allows us much more control over the materials you get for mining or interacting with a node.

An example of this interacting with a broken railing will give you a metal pole but takes a couple of seconds. Breaking the railing with the axe is quicker but will give you scrap metal and degrade your weapon slightly. We are look to implement with on many destructibles in the existing bases so we can offer the player materials but also tools depending on the situation.

Will – 3D Artist

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been working on a modular kit which can be used for various areas in the game. These required some work to get the damage looking varied and ensuring they would snap to each other well at the same time. Still, the kit looked too solid when put together, so some frayed innards were made to make the pieces look even more shattered.

Tom H – Designer

Polish, polish, polish. That’s been the name of the game this week. I have been focusing on getting all the main section of the game fully polished up in terms of terrain, meaning going through the environment with a fine tooth comb and ironing out any creases I find such as floating meshes, cliff problems, terrain issue, you name it! As well as this I have been putting the finishing touches on the spawners for the Dam and Transmitter sections to make sure each and every encounter is as memorable as the last!

Sam – Concept Artist

This week has been all about the makeshift axe for me. I’ve taken last week’s sketches and realised them in a more realistic way, as with the spear, to help identify which features we’d like to include in the design. I’ve been sourcing a lot of supplementary imagery from scrap heaps, as you can probably tell from the dishevelled nature of the renders, which are effectively meant to look like they are built from said scrap.

The design that you are most likely to end up seeing in-game is the one on the far right, which is combination of features from several previous trials. I rather like the way the blade appears to be made from some sort of rusted shard of iron – what do you think?

Lauren – Lead Animator

I have been polishing up the stalker, the axe and consumable animations this week, with various weapon fixes along the way. The stalker has been given more charge attacks with some delivering a single swipe before retreating, others delivering a second swipe. I set up the new Shiv weapon so that all its slashes and stabs alternate, blend their animations and do damage. I’ve also been working on more stability animations for various AI while also working on getting them to react appropriately to blocks and parries

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix