We’ve been putting up drywall and spackling holes in our systems during our AI renovation. We rolled up our sleeves and focused on our core gameplay loop (spawning, guest reviews, marketing campaigns, hotel ratings), implementing our new and improved character models, getting serialisation working again, more localisation work, and the start of our audio implementation. We think you’ll like the changes.
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We’ve had most of the base systems for the core gameplay loop in place for a while, but as we decided to do an AI rework a few months ago, it temporarily broke a few of these systems, or at least how they interacted with each other. Now that the new AI has had most of its kinks ironed out we’ve begun re-implementing the various systems that weren’t playing nicely at first.
As a whole we gave the game a good spring cleaning, cutting out the cobwebs of systems that didn’t contribute to making Hotel Magnate a fun tycoon game. Some of this work included reimplementing marketing campaigns, guests making reviews, generating proper hotel star ratings, and spawning guests correctly based on these other systems.
To help guide a new player we also implemented the first steps in our objectives system. This is where the player is given quests or objectives that will help direct the player into getting a hotel up and running with rewards along the way. On top of objectives we are also implementing an Alerts system where the player will be notified of any critical issues the hotel has like inaccessible furniture or a broken facility.
New Character Models
We know that we’ve talked a lot about this element in previous updates and twitter posts but it will be well worth it. Guests and staff form a big part of the game so it is worth getting it right. After a lot of designing, reworks, and testing we’re happy to be implementing this iteration of characters into the game.
We’ve introduced a wide range of clothing, accessories, and hairstyles. We cleaned up the skeleton of the models so they can be animated easier, and overall made the models appear more consistent with our art style even with tweaking their adjustable blendshapes.
The base guest looks can be changed by adjusting their age, weight, fitness & gender. If you combine this with the number of skin tones, hair, clothing & facial features, you end up with the possibility of 1000’s of different looking characters.
Serialisation (Saving & Loading)
It's been a hard task to re-implement as it involves every system in the game, it takes quite a while to dive into every aspect of the game and make sure it will be saved/loaded correctly, but it seems we’ve done it. Just like the gameplay loop, serialisation was heavily affected by reworking the AI system and we couldn't fix it until the new AI system was complete.
We are not only excited to get this back in the hands of our alpha players but to also use it for ourselves. It will allow for much quicker testing of systems as we won't have to rebuild a hotel everytime we want to test something.
Art Style, Audio & UI
Alongside our character and furniture modelling, one of our artists has been creating concept art to help direct our art style. This concept art has been extremely important and helpful in our process. The main focus of all our artwork from now on is new furniture as we are quite happy with our character designs for now. Below are some screenshots of some of the concept work
We have also begun adding in audio, you will now be able to adjust different volume levels from the settings menu. Currently, we have only implemented UI audio and will be moving to everything else shortly. The current sounds are a work in progress and many will change over time as we test and gather feedback.
Alongside adding these sounds to buttons & menus we have also begun adding more UI animations and transitions. Both the audio and animations will make using the menus a much more pleasant and enjoyable experience.
Join us on our discord server where we would love to hear any of your feedback or just to have a chat. Thanks for reading and we hope you have a great festive season!
- Added in some click/hover sounds to sections of the UI
- Added in animations for sections of the UI
- Management menu layout improvements & bug fixes
- New character models implemented
- Serialisation(saving & loading) re-implemented
- Hotel Star Ratings & Guest Reviews implemented
- Alerts/Notifications implemented
- Objectives/Goals Implemented