Hey everyone! Welcome to Mondoid. This week, and we’ll cut straight to the chase with some video goodness! (Remember: work in progress, some bugs visible! More work in implementation and visuals to come!)
So, what are we looking at? Physics-enhanced vehicles in Project Zomboid, both online and off, and some hefty improvements on map streaming and object processing to handle it all. You enter a car with ‘E’, control with WSAD and have various vehicley-options open to you through a radial menu when you’re in the driver’s seat.
We’ve had the vehicles branch on the boil for a while (alongside the usual anims branch, standard build branches and a few others) but this year’s work in melding of EP’s car physics and framework with General Arcade’s special sauce has seen great things occurring. Progress has been good this past week too (as you can hopefully tell from comparing this video with one recorded five or six days ago) and we’re really excited about how the vehicles look and feel to drive. There have already been tests in multiplayer that went very well, with the new map streaming changes working niftily and boding well for future optimization.
So what’s still to be done amidst the general bug fixing? Well, in amongst others and the tidying up of zombie collision visuals – the following:
Firstly, and most importantly, we need to make sure that we’re not introducing a new breed of indestructo-tanks to Project Zomboid. We have to make sure that survival times aren’t hugely extended by cars, and that their use carries as many negatives as positives for the players. Also we need to figure out a good balance between zombie squashing fun and the realism Zomboid tends toward, avoiding the vehicles being too OP and sturdy against groups of zombies, while still providing the satisfaction of mowing down zombies in bigger vehicles.
There’s an issue to resolve with how cars are drawn into the scene, sometimes resulting in weird draw sorting bugs with ground grass or zombies drawn in front of the car when they should be blocked by it. This is due to the fact that currently 3D models are drawn at the same time as the tile they are ‘stood’ on. This doesn’t cater for larger 3D objects very well, so we’ll need to think on how to handle this and make sure they all occlude each other correctly.
The current sounds of the vehicles are 100% placeholder, and we’ll be working on these before release.
More cars! This video is fairly packed with ‘speciality’ vehicles, and Martin is currently in the process of making more vehicles to provide more variety and/or Kentucky normality.
Balancing: Each vehicle type needs balancing not only on their rarity, but in terms of handling, top speed, and all the other factors to make them feel different to drive. Right now, apart from their size and wheel positions, they are all functionally identical.
Wrecks and pile-ups: At the moment all cars spawn in parked locations, neatly parked in car parks or outside homes. We need to add wrecks, abandoned vehicles, pile ups and other more apocalyptic set ups of cars while also keeping in-touch with what Will’s set up in the PZ lore.
RingoD has patched up the faults in the TIS-curated community map Bedford Falls that were introduced through the 2x revolution. It should now be fully playable and can return to general PZ MP server use. Download here.
Turbo has updated his modding and dev tool ItemZed, along with some fresh easier-to-read instructions that explain how you too can play around with recipes, items, looting locations and lots lots more.
Mapper Cardenaglo’s crazy/awesome Gaia is out in its first form. Do check it out!
This week’s image is by us. 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 now open for chat and hijinks too. A general overview of the content of PZ builds past, in testing and upcoming can be found here.