DEV BLOG #156 - LET’S HEAR IT!
17 of November, 2017
We continue teasing you about the forthcoming update, but for a change we also present a little treat for your ears. Find out what it is and what everyone’s been working on this week.
We found a lot of bugs at last weeks QA session at the university and more importantly, what causes them. A lot of them already got smashed but we’re going to dedicate the entire week before the launch of the Community Module to fix as many as possible.
By the way we’re now less than two weeks away from the release of the Community Module! Here’s the song that will accompany the new trailer, made by Tuomas Nikkinen:
The trailer is nearing completion, or at least the setting up part, I’ve created a lot of scenes, which I will now start animating. I usually split my time between all of the work I have to do. If there’s several deliverables for the same project (in this case a trailer) I divide my time.
So for example, if there’s five scenes I’ve got to do, I split a day for 1-2 hours per scene. This keeps me focused on the big picture and I don’t get lost in the details. What happens otherwise is that I might spend a day on one scene and the other ones are completely underdeveloped. Below you can see another work in progress render!
This week has been about 2-3 days of UI work and the rest on the trailer again! It’s closing in on the animation phase, with some last touches to the setup of each scene. While I’ve been working on the trailer, the programmers have made some changes to how some of the UI works; which means that some of the original layouts didn’t work anymore. So, small fixes to layouts and new graphics for the tutorial was on the agenda for this week.
After spending several days debugging a big freeze bug, I finally ended up fixing it by adding a single character in the right spot.
That’s programming for you.
For the rest of the week I started working on making saves work again, as they always break during the development of a module.
This week my focus has been on getting alliances and war to work properly. Alliances are now working fine, rewarding the cities with a sense of fellowship, better trade agreements, and free movement within each others borders. The war has been a harder nut to crack but it is getting there.
Some unexpected bugs were also found and fixed which will result in reliable looting and raiding if the attacking nation wins the war. We have also made sure that the player commandments now have a lot more impact on how cities treat each other. Even though a lot has been improved, there is still a lot of balancing and tweaking left to be done before the module release.
This week I fixed the code for the new UI window that shows which cities are faithful, faithless, or undecided towards the player. The design for the faith and influence system was slightly changed, which I made sure was implemented in the code.
Influence is now based on the total amount of followers in faithful cities and faithless cities, where every follower in a faithful city adds 1 influence point as reward and every follower in a faithless city subtracts 1 point. Undecided followers add zero influence. A base influence value is added to make sure the player always receives influence points no matter what.
I have worked closely with Emelie this week on continuing the development of the new tutorial. It is coming along nicely. The new tutorial should have a much better flow than the previous one and it is in the world, pointing to UI elements and in-world objects that are being described. It should be easier to learn the game with this iteration of the tutorial. Hopefully it’s the last major rework of it! Most of the tutorial is actually completed, only minor tweaks remain for next week.
This week I have been working on the tutorial, working closely with Tomas. The text and the position of the bubbles have been iterated quite a bit and there are still things to be done, the structure is there and the focus now is to make the flow better and more guiding for the player. Other than the tutorial I’ve been playtesting in order to find bugs.
This week I have been going through the results from the playtesting we did last friday and documenting any found bugs to be exterminated. I have also done some additional playtesting on my own to make sure the new stuff we’ve been working on isn’t broken. Together with this I have been setting up the planning for our final push to the Community Module, while also doing some company stuff.