May Development Update 2!

Greetings Pioneers!

More shiny new items have been making their way in this week with the debris kit, tent and fabricator being finalised. New items to match those icons we previewed a few weeks back have received the 3D treatment and there has been more work on the placement of destructible/minable assets in conjunction with the new crafting recipes.

John – Lead Designer

There’s always that conundrum of interaction and destruction vs performance, our game systems are geared to provide as much interaction as possible but the ultimate trade off is always around the corner, does she have the power captain? We think so, seeing as we’re building for the long term.

We’ve recently improved this by implemented an instanced static mesh destruction system that has full designer input for placement, meaning any mesh in the world can be batch swapped for a destructible version at the click of a button (providing it has destructible asset)

Matt – Art Director

Ahora que he regresado de mis maravillosas vacaciones en España, he decidido que a partir de ahora solo hablaré en español.

Apart from learning to speak Spanish I’ve been continuing the modelling for the airlock, this includes designing some fancy holographic signage for the airlock access points. Importantly these kind of airlock details will be used throughout the other bases in the world. Images coming soon!

Lee – Technical Director

This week I have been adding some new functionality to stop the AI planners from running straight away when they spawn so the designers can perform unique or scripted events with the AI before turning them on correctly. They seem to be working quite well now, with just a couple of little issues in multiplayer left to iron out.

Thomas Wha – Environment Artist/ ‘Rock’ Wrangler/Sand Person

Following some feedback from the community, we’ve reworked the tents a little, pushing for a more fragile/temporary shelter look, so stripped back a lot of the various metal components and panels.

Ontop of that, I’ve reworked some of our sand materials and atmospherics, as well as heading up some feedback/review sessions with external artists, making sure everything fits the artistic direction of the game set up by Matt and Joe.

Tristan – Lead Developer

This week I have been continuing on with the melee work and getting the block node and camera adjustments working 🙂

Ricky – Senior Developer

Helping out with some build module changes to split out the buildables in each and working on getting new weapons like the spear usable and throwable.

Tom H / TOMato – Designer

This week I have been putting the finishing touches on the terrain from the Transmitter to the Silo. Smoothing out areas to make things easier for gameplay and traversal. As well as designing how the environment looks to help players find their way around and orient themselves.

As well as this I have been looking into the bridge over to the Dam and redesigning this area to fit contextually with the rest of the environment. As well as the best way to introduce new players to some of the challenges that will await them throughout the rest of the game. This work will be continued into next week.

Marcin – Designer

This week I’ve been working on the Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) feature, which will be the Eden Star’s version of an in-game journal. You will be able to access it from the menu and inside find useful information. To begin with the PDA will contain “the story so far” as well as some tutorial paragraphs, but later it may also include a codex of your discoveries on Pharus 7.

Joe – Lead Artist

I’ve been getting Will and James’ lovely wonderful art assets set up and tweaked in engine so the designers can start using them, as well as continuing work on the new HUD Alerts visuals and interaction markers.

William – 3D Artist

Been working with Joe to get these items modelled up for use in the game world!

Tom S – Developer

The new HUD Marker backend system is in! Luckily I had the most amazing set of designs to work from. In fact they were so good I totally forgot to fill out my blog entry 🙂

OG Tom W – Designer

This week I have been building weapons with the new system created by our excellent developers. We now have a scrap axe, fabricated axe, pole, spear and shiv that can be crafted and equipped by the player. These are still in the early stages though and so we still need to balance swing times and damage. Also this week there has been a lot of meetings about different elements of the game design so we can start solidifying some decisions and get them in the game.

Sam – Concept Artist

After enjoying a sunny bank holiday Monday, I’ve gotten back on to working on a number of things for the encampment area. Amongst these are a few of the items you saw last week – the ones that can be found inside each shelter unit. Most recently I’ve been developing the look of the rebreather/air filtration unit, which I’m currently not satisfied with. At the moment t I’ve been trying to improve the side view especially, while also bringing up the general level of interest.

Most of the other items are still in flux, but I have also produced a little mood piece for the encampment to try and visualise the aesthetic we want in-game. If all goes well, these elements should all slip into place fairly soon!

Lauren – Lead Animator

The new AI spawners have been the main focus of this week. We wanted to have the ability to control what the AI do upon initially spawning, delay some of them with animation, have them traverse in certain ways and generally have more options with what they do before fully ‘activating’ and coming after the player.

For this I put together three types of spawners, all of which are interruptible if the player engages with the AI, it will force them to fully activate. This will allow for more ceremony in AI appearances and it should also be easier to control them with cinematic events.

Andy – Lead QA

I have spent a lot of this week working through all the small details of our first area. Trying to ensure that everything is working with a purpose and driving the player along our critical path without making them feel forced in a direction.

There has been a lot of reviews and iterations of new buildable assets, we are perfectionists and I have likely been driving the 3D artists up the wall with my demands.
I am in the process of reworking and redesigning our “scanner” system in order to give it a shiny new feel.

See you in the fray!

-Team Flix