During last week’s livestream, Mark mentioned how we were “set up for a very interesting few weeks to come.” Well we’ve certainly begun to deliver on that statement this week, with a whole host of exciting new features in the works! Check out our Top Tenish list of a whopping seventeen items for more details!
In addition, in today’s stream, Ben and JB presented the work we’ve been doing on the game’s ability builder, as well as the mage classes! If you missed that stream, you can catch it HERE. It’s a very interesting stream, especially if you’re into mages; but for everyone who will be playing CU, the ability builder will be a big part of your experience, allowing you to play your class the way you want to play it!
Also, as promised, we’ve been doing quite a bit of testing this week on a much sleeker version of our Siege of Cherry Keep with lots of performance improvements! I personally (Tyler) still can’t fathom the number of siege engines, NPCs, and FX going off during this siege. It’s simply mind-boggling how far we’ve come from a handful of trebuchets attacking a small keep to what we’re testing now!
Here’s the details for this weekend’s test:
Saturday, May 18th, 2019
Countdown Timer HERE
Duration: 3 hours: 12pm – 3pm EDT / 9am – 12pm PDT / 6pm – 9pm CEST (Get Localization)
IT / Alpha / Beta 1
Hope to CU there!
For the rest of the aforementioned cool new things we’re working on, let’s jump into our Top Tenish!
WIP – Tech – Deployable Items: Christina completed the first pass on the readying system, which can be used when certain items are deployed. This system will allow us to change how long it takes to deploy something such as a siege engine. This readying process can be interrupted and halted through disruption-causing effects. Be aware that in order to pack an item back into your inventory, it must also be unreadied!
WIP – Tech – Siege Movement: Spidey has completed the proof-of-concept for moving a siege engine around the battlefield. In this early iteration, players “push” a siege engine. We are working on the tech to add more player attach points, so multiple players can work together in order to move the engine rapidly across the terrain.
WIP – Tech – Performance: Rob spent the week improving performance via bug fixes. He added in debugging tools to find and fix bugs or improve performance in a variety of ways. If you’ve played in our previous tests, you should see a significant difference in the new build! With hundreds of siege engines and NPCs, the Siege of Cherry Keep runs silky smooth (depending on your PC of course), with more improvements to come!
WIP – Tech – Post Office: Caleb has been working on improving our Post Office messaging system. The Post Office was initially conceived as a generic low-frequency message path for high-level messages between servers and well known endpoints. However, we decided we want to upgrade its Pub/Sub capabilities. Pub/Sub is shorthand for publish and subscribe, which is a pattern used in networking where the senders of messages don’t need to know who will receive a message. While we had some Pub/Sub capabilities, it wasn’t efficient enough. We needed faster filtering and matching of messages to subscriptions, as we intend to increase the load on this kind of messaging in our ability system/scenario scripting.
WIP – Tech – Doors: The architecture is in place for a generalized notion of ItemEntities that can animate and have animated collision, of which doors will be the first working example. The connectivity between game server, physics server, and client is nearly done, such that next week we should have animation state changes propagating between each part of the system. This lays the groundwork for bringing the world to life with objects that can interact dynamically in a variety of ways, such as doors, drawbridges, animated item destruction, and more.
WIP – Tech – Infusions: This week, Anthony converted infusion items to actually consume the items, and be able to have either “use if available but cast regardless” and “require this infusion, like you would arrows for a bow.”
WIP – Tech – Entity Movement: Colin worked on generalizing physics snapshot interpolation on the client (i.e. how the client smoothly moves entities based on messages from the physics server). When this is done, it will let us share share the interpolation code between different entity types. We’ll first use this to smooth out the movement of siege engines.
WIP – Tech – NavMesh: Lee continued work on the NavMesh Edge Analyzer this week. Now that it finds constrained edges, the NavMesh needs to next form a concave hull around groups of connected edges to form polygons, which will then be put into the NavMesh as obstacles. Lee will also begin work on optimizations to improve the performance of this system.
Tech – UI – Ability Book: AJ’s ability book work has been completed, and is going through its final reviews. We expect to get this in for first pass testing early next week. The ability book will allow you to store your abilities, along with info about them.
Design – World and Mages: Ben continued work on the world design, as well as his presentation on mages. If you have any questions about mages, start with our previously mentioned livestream from earlier today HERE.
WIP – UI – Social UI: AJ has started work on rank and permission management within the social UI so Backers can manage their Orders.
WIP – Art – Mage Outfit LODs: Dionne and Tyler completed five of the ten sets of equipment that we plan on giving our mages for initial testing purposes. Next week, we’ll finish off the final five and get them imported into the game!
WIP – Art – Corpse Chuckers: With concept art approved, Dionne has begun the modeling phase and has completed the Viking version and is currently working through the TDD version. We did have to make them a little wider to accommodate their “ammo” (see below)!
Art – Concept Art – Battering Rams: We’ve completed several pages of concepts for these new siege engines, and plan to get to the modeling phase right after the corpse chuckers are done. We’re excited to add in a very different type of siege engine to the mix and see what interesting gameplay evolves from their inclusion! Coming soon: MJ and Ben will do a presentation of our Siege System Season One! Okay, not Season One–Version One!
Art – SFX – Chaos Magic: DB finished the Chaos magic sounds for the Druid abilities. He has also begun playing with some new tech, allowing us to differentiate building destruction sounds based on material type!
Art – Animation – Magic Mortars: Joe updated the magic mortars with small foot pedals that line up with the player animations and added a firing animation to the mortars themselves.
WIP – Art – Animation – One Handed Weapon Combinations: Scott finished the dagger set, and is currently retargeting those animations to the Luchorpán skeleton. Sandra is wrapping up her work to support maces, hammers, and axes today, with plans to integrate these into the game Monday.
If you missed the mage presentation or would like to further peruse the images we showed in the stream (linked above), here you go! We start off with the ability builder UI.
Next, we’ve got images breaking down the components for the three mage classes. First, the Arthurian Flame Warden.
And the TDD Druid.
And last and certainly not least, the Viking Wave Weaver.
Last week, we showed off our initial concepts for the “corpse chuckers,” which you can see HERE. We’ve further refined these, and have chosen our final three to begin working on.
Dionne has started the modeling work using our existing trebuchet models as a base. Here, we have progress on both the TDD and Viking models.
If you look closely, you can see we had to widen these a bit to fit the “ammo” sitting in the sling.
The next siege engine we’ve begun concepting is the battering ram. Here we have some concepts for each Realm. On the left-hand side are four Arthurian concepts, and then on the top right, Viking, and bottom right, TDD.
And that’s the end of this week’s update! I’m pretty excited about the doors, which are cool on their own and add lots of gameplay, but I’m even more focused on how the supporting tech opens us up to more animated objects that have collision. Also, for all you old school DAoC fans, I’m sure seeing us working on battering rams brings back some good memories. Exciting stuff coming down the pipe!
Once again, we are having a test this weekend, and will have a follow-up email with more information. We hope to CU there!