Short dev blog this week as we’re still patching up the vehicles build. The initial launch was pretty stable, and has thrown up some amazing tales of survival adventure, but there’s still a few nips and tucks required before it can be considered a final version. To which end…
We’ve just released the first vehicles patch (Build 39.67.5) and you can read the full patch notes here. Issues that we’ve addressed include: broken VOIP, players riding shotgun being teleported, disappearing car keys and hopefully a bunch of ‘ghost zombie’ occurrences.
The patch also increases tool spawns, makes collisions with zombies a bit more solid, reduces generator fuel consumption and introduces a new item that can charge car batteries if you’re in an electrified area. There’s also a lot of general UI work done to improve playability on different resolutions, and to better support EnigmaGrey’s Big Freakin’ Fonts mod while we work on our own improved support for higher resolution screens.
We anticipate a few further patches before Build 39 is considered complete, but hopefully this will be the largest and most wide-ranging one. Please let us know of any further issues that we need to address in the bug report section of our forum, and thank you for all your amazing feedback since it launched too.
Elsewhere we have Mark and the guys at T.E.A. working on our new animation system and dev/modding tool AnimZed – which Martin our animator now has in his hands to provide feedback on, and go over his work thus far.
“Whilst a lot of work has been done under the hood to make the new animation system work” he explains, “Any input from me, like new anims or clothes, has had to go through a programmer to get implemented. AnimZed allows me, a non-coding scrub, to add and tweak anims as well as add new clothes and combine these into outfits.”
“Right now I’m looking at movements (running, walking, strafing etc.) and looking to iron out any kinks with the tool and any of the animations. We’ve encountered some foot sliding which we’ll look at in the next week, for example, and in another case it appeared that bags/rucksacks were being shown inside out. It’s this sort of thing that becomes easier to sort through with AnimZed, and should become easier to fix within the tool too – with the guys on Mark’s team continuing to polish and roll out more features, making it ever more comprehensive and easy to use.”
As mentioned last week, while all this anims work is going on we’ve got also got a fair amount of new stuff that feels ready for public testing. For example from General Arcade there’s Stas’ chatbox update and a load of additional work and presentation fixes on vehicles from Yuri. Netcode improvements, better car shadows, less ugly clipping between player and car, improved headlights, fixed textures, non-floating cars, better zombie responsiveness and a lot of general tidy-up work all needs to be opened up to testers.
Turbo, too, is now negotiating what’s hopefully the last of the major challenges set against his new climate, fog and precipitation system. In previous weeks we’ve discussed how the ability to see fog/rain/snow through windows was tricky when it comes to the inner workings of PZ, but having worked this out he also had to figure out a way to let fog appear to envelop player-made structures that weren’t standard dev/modder-made entities on the map.
As such Turbo has been working on something that can detect sufficiently roofed and walled player structures to mask his fog, which we’ll likely be able to use elsewhere in the game too. Once this is in and working we hope to be able to mix it all in with General Arcade’s work and get it ready for wider testing.
Thanks so much for all your continuing feedback and bug reports on Build 39. Please keep it coming!
This week’s gun shop heist from Prawnflakes. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too.