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Arts and Crafts

February 16, 2015

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s Mondoid. Just a short one here, but some interesting stuff about build 32 non-the-less!

Anim Overhaul Update

The stealth system / animation overhaul has taken a little longer than expected, to the point where we’re starting to think it would be best saved for 32 than slow down the traits etc coming to the peoples. The reason for its delay is due to the fact that the animation system we had in the game was basic to say the least, coming from  2D 5 frame sprite animations it is basically only able to say ‘play this animation’, ‘now play this animation’. As the stealth system developed there had to be more and more fudged code to get anims to play in sequence on demand, in the end it was concluded the system wouldn’t be sufficient.

The new animation system is more sophisticated than the old, supporting more advanced features such as allowing travel to be defined in the animation, so stuff like foot sliding no longer occurs and zombie’s movement will be more shuffley instead of sliding along at a constant speed while looping an animation, as well as having more ability for transition animations (say bursting into a run from stand still, or coming to a stand still from a sprint), and branching anim states allowing for logic to define chains of animations (think more fluid and interesting combat) that should make the game play a lot more fluidly.

Our catalogue of animations is rising daily, now in the hundreds (!?!) and just waiting for the system to be in place that should see an avalanche of new animations going into the game. Everything from hammering a wall to looting a container are catered for. A particular one we’re looking forward to the moment when a player is wandering down the street and a sea of zombies all turn their heads with a groan before spotting you, stumbling around and shuffling toward you. Little touches that will make the game feel more legitimately like a zombie movie experience as well as the more gameplay oriented anims.

Build 31

So without stealth holding it back, as soon as we feel 31 is ready for more public eyes, we’ll get IWBUMsing it to the max. No telling when that will be, but hopefully soon!

Build 32

So let’s talk a little about where the next build will be going. Build 32 will see the professions / traits / skills overhaul continue, in our efforts to fill out the rest of the game in the same way we did the character creation with a major update to crafting and skills. This may well continue past 32 all the way up until 1.0 too. Our plan is to massively increase the amount of recipes and crafting in the game.

Now we have much more focus on professions, we will be expanding this by introducing the concepts of learned recipes. At the moment a few crafting recipes and construction things require a particular skill to be available. Once we overhaul the recipes the key factor will be whether a given character is aware its possible to build that particular item, or how to build it. Many recipes, such as say sandwiches, will be universally available to characters. Others may only be offered with specific professions or traits.

If you’re a character that does not start knowing this recipe, then you will need to learn it somewhere. Like perhaps from the TV? Or a book? Recipe books will be the new ‘go to’ for people aspiring to learn in the apocalypse. There will be numerous recipe books around the world that will have a themed combination of crafting recipes in them. The player will be able to choose from the available recipes and learn them, each taking less time than reading a skill book currently does (multiplayer players will be happy to hear this, no doubt!). Some recipes will have skill prerequisites, others will not, but we can be more generous when it comes to minimums once this is in since it already has the requirement of either starting with the recipe or finding it in the game. To those that have been stressing about the possibility of rain collectors shoehorning people into carpentry roles, they will be pleased to know that non carpentry related rain collection methods will be introduced at this stage, too.

With the introduction of this system, it frees us up to adding more specialist crafting recipes into the game, as if you specifically pick a profession to use that particular talent, then we need to worry less about portraying the ‘every man/woman’ (something which made us shun putting in crafting recipes that seemed too specialist or weird for an ‘average joe’ to be building in a post apocalypse world). We want to add a ton of new areas of crafting, from sewing to electronics, before the end, and RJ is currently composing a list of new stuff that he’s going to focus on on the run up to 1.0.

Today’s featured image from Steam user N3uroR4ptor! Newsletter, newsletter, sign up here!