April report. We've been doing more stuff, but it's mostly behind the scenes development that isn't much we can show off. It's kind of like the setting up the foundation of a building before you actually get to building the rooms. That's kind of what the development process feels like at the moment. However, it is still a necessary step because without the foundation how will the house support itself?
However let's take a look at what we got this month
We discussed and changed up how we were going to do the private housing which I think everyone will enjoy. Previously we were thinking the private housing may need to be an instance map created in a void that you access via an entry point via the main world, with a loading screen (bluh). Similiar to certain other games. However, we came up with something better. We've been trying to cut out on loading screens almost entirely and so instead of warping to your house we're going to put everyone in villages. What that means is your house will have a street and building number associated with it and you can walk directly to it from the main world. In addition you will be surrounded by other houses in your village so it doesn't feel like your farm is out in the middle of nowhere away from everyone else.
We're going to design it so the farms do have some bit of privacy to them, but this way it feels like an actual neighborhood where you can walk across the street and see what others are doing. Don't worry the way we're setting it up is we will not easily run out of room on the map and easily accomodate over 10,000 houses. We also will have options for if you want to move in next to a friend.
We've done a mini test with this setup and it looks like it's going to work.
Im addition we have been going over and discussing how chilren will work and everything looks like it'd do able and checked out ok. Granted this feature will not be available on first release in Beta. Special thanks to Jrome, Sarrene and Keeper for helping us on this.
We has 12/55 furniture sets completed. That's over 300 models (Each set has 27 furniture pieces) and we haven't even gotten to the textures yet, as each furniture set may have multiple textures and colors associated with it for even more variety. Special thanks Jeremy for working on those for us.
We have begun the process of tediously linking up our game world. I'm about 22/234 areas in to linking them up. Which seems like a lot and pretty daunting task, but this is for the ENTIRE game world meant to accomodate thousands of players, with many areas to explore and travel. Once all the areas are linked up you can move seamlessly between them without a load screen, maybe a hiccup when you cross over the line but nothing that should last more than 6 seconds. So you could walk the entire game world without hitting a single loading screen. After that is set up then we can go in and start sculpting out the world which is the fun part. Special thanks to Sarrene from Triad games for helping us set that up.
I know someone on tumblr asked if we were going to have actual grass in the game, as opposed to our crappy pre-alpha grass. Yes
we do have new textures.
(These are only in our test area with test graphics and do not reflect final look of the game)
We are almost done with completing the Central town soundtrack. 17/24 songs have been completed. Yay! Special thanks to Clark who has been working really hard on that. We're hoping to debut that sound track soon hopefully by late summer.
We got the swimming animation working! And most of the character moves around and works pretty well. It's a matter of refining some of the animation. So we're on to the final intense stage which is facegen. Facegen is the feature that will enable players to customize the proportions of their character with a slider. So you could adjust your weight, chest size, muscle size etc. It also automically makes any clothing models fit to your character's form as well. However, it's pretty tricky to implement so fingers crossed we can pull it off.
In the meanwhile Mark has started modelling more clothes for the characters.
Icons and UI
The flower icons are done! So now we're moving on to the tool icons which we will be needing to test with as soon as the character animation is completed.
So currently the icon sets we have finished are: Crops(70+), Ores(80), Flowers (68), Seed Bags for both Flowers and crops (123) Icons aren't needed quite yet but we're getting a head start on those.
Sorry guys due to real life and juggling multiple tasks I have not been able to mail out any more Kickstarter packages. I will once again try to make an attempt this month. Also a couple of the packages came back, which isn't that surprising but to remind you that if you moved our your address changed you can go into your Kickstarter and change it from there or just let us know.
Goals for next month
- Fix up the Website
- Get the World map linked up
- Advance in getting facegen working
- Get some clothing pieces modelled
- More music
- More furniture
- Tool icon set completed
Projections by the end of the year
Now that we're getting close to the half way mark on our first year I can anticipate based on our progress where we should be at the end of the year.
- Furniture models and everything else we need for house customization completed.
- Map world set up and the world starting to be built
- Most of the basic icons will be done
- Game Design thought out in it's entirety
- Begin working on the Systems
- Music for the Central Region done and maybe close to finishing another town.
- Character Creation should be finished or close to being finished.
- Have the Kickstarter rewards mailed out.
Thanks again everyone for your support.