DEV BLOG #160 - UPHILL BATTLE
15 of December, 2017
Many battles have been won this week and an immense progress was made in tackling some of the long-overdue issues.
A new patch will be released today. Johannes is still working on it with full force together with Jens but it'll come out very soon.
We'll keep it short in the Community section this week but don't worry, there will be a special blog post on Tuesday, keep a lookout for that! Also be aware of our Discord channel, holiday season seems to make everyone a bit...silly.
Until all of the new exciting features and revamped systems are done by code, I'm in a bit of a slump when it comes to content. Bottlenecks sometimes happen, usually for us non-programmers and especially in a procedural game.
So what we do is trying to do meaningful work that doesn't increase the workload for the programmers. I'm designing hats! Each doctrine's city leader will have their animal symbol as a hat to make it easier to know at a glance which doctrine a certain city follows.
I've been making good progress on the new water system. It's very satisfying to see it come together. I can't wait for it to be finished and working together with the rest of the game systems.I've also done some work on today's patch release, mostly merging fixes back from the dev branch.
Most of this week I've felt like I'm making a nature documentary film. I have tweaked, continued to improved, and tested the migration behaviours of all animals. Made sure that they all migrate at appropriate times. This involves a lot of observations and documentation of data related to migration and feeding of the animals. Herbivores moves when they are out of food or if they are being hunted heavily by predators. And when they move, the predators soon migrate after.
The balancing of values will be further worked on but we can already see huge improvements in how impactful the followers are on the eco system. If followers decimate a predators food source, the predators will move to another food source that maybe already sustains another group of predators. Now two groups are hunting from the same herbivore habitat, resulting in a slow and steady collaps if one is not careful.
I also made a change to pathing to ensure that followers will now avoid walking through a hippo habitat if they can find a better way. Hopefully this will prevent the massacres we've had previously...
You may have noticed in the game that followers and animals are glitching/snapping to positions when they are walking. Until now, the walking animation was dependent on a variable we call "time units". Time units are a sort of currency for how many actions a follower or an animal can do before they need to rest.
Time units are updated on a constant time interval. Walking from A to B costs the amount of time units relative to the total distance to walk. The speed in which the characters moved was determined by the animation, which made it difficult to sync the updated time units and the animations. Now, the walking animations control when time units are spent. This thing should be implemented before the christmas holiday.
I have been working with Follower & City Needs this week. The system has not been working as intended and was finally rectified.
It is a complex system of cravings and basic needs that determines followers' happiness and what they do with their free will actions. I added a bunch of debug tools so that the system is easier to balance, which should make Emelie's work easier.
This week I have been doing some playtesting and helping out with game design stuff, in addition to my ordinary work of keeping track of the project and making sure that everyone knows what they're doing. I have also started planning work for beginning of next year.
Have a nice weekend!