Weekly Dev Update – October 24th, 2014

Hey everybody! For those who missed it from the Tuesday post, we’ll be holding off on Tuesday Dev Features for a few weeks as we get ready to start closed first playable playtests. This also means we’re crunching like mad, so these updates will be chock full of features!


Hi everybody! This week has been spent creating a Frankencomputer by melding the better parts of my old PC with the better parts of my “new” PC. Followed by trouble shooting and software installations to bring balance to the force of computers in my home. Once everything was up and running I was able to get back to working on portraits.


This week I worked on designing procedurally generated storyarcs. Now that missions are working and generating narrative (and all the things characters can do on a mission — combat, mining, objectives, etc), we want to be able to guide the narratives into some cohesive storyarc that digs into the personalities of your crew.

Nothing here pre-scripted! The storyarcs will happen organically based on the decisions of the characters on the missions, and who they are as people. This is super-exciting to us because it means the mission reports will read like vingettes or mini-episodes where stuff happens and story is created based on who your characters are!


For the last few weeks, I’ve been waiting on a patch to a third-party AI solution we’re using for character pathfinding through the astrobase. This meant that a lot of critical features that relied on this working had to be put on hold.

So, this week was spent mostly working on features that wasn’t impacted by this. I started by creating our first iteration of a main menu. It’s got what I think is a cool visual concept that we’ll be able to refine later. Gameplay-wise, it now allows to actually create a species rather than rely on one getting randomly rolled for us.

I also worked some more on cameras and input. Since we’ve boiled things down to an external camera for overall module viewing (ideal for reports and module construction) and an internal camera for crew and section-specific interaction, I’ve had to do some work sorting out what a player is trying to do when they click or mouse over. Are you trying to preview the section or the character inside it? Things like that.

It also gave me the opportunity to create an ugly placeholder contextual floating menu when you select modules in the external view. Eventually, it’ll allow you to set the state of the module (normal, evacuation or lockdown) as well as destroy it, but for now all you can do is rename it. They start out as “Module 1”, “Module 2” and so on, but we wanted players to give names so they have easy ways to refer to areas of the astrobase, as well as personalize things a bit.

I also added some additional camera rotation control on the mouse. We’ve been relying on a lot of keyboard input for things and I’m trying to lighten that up a little bit.

As I’m writing this, I just managed to fix the aforementioned pathing bug, so I’ll probably be spending some time fixing all the little bugs that will come with people going about their daily routines (eat, sleep, work, socialize, wander) and how they execute them. I just noticed a bug where people are sitting on each other in the cantina. So, fun times ahead! See you next week!

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Hard At Work
Weekly Dev Update – October 31st, 2014
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