Welcome to July’s development update!
Progress is going better than ever behind the scenes, with some much-needed mechanics finally starting to take shape, making the current iteration of Prehistoric Kingdom feel more like the game we all expect. Last month we mentioned we might not have as many news due to the higher volume of work, but there are still many exciting things to uncover, so bear with us!
PAX West: Update
In case you’ve missed the last few updates, we’ll be attending PAX West from August 30th to September 2nd in Seattle with our publisher, Crytivo! As the opening day gets closer (tickets available here), Crytivo’s been sharing pictures of some of the merch and booth elements that’ll be found on the show floor; how exciting!
Our perfect PAX banner! All it needs now is a dinosaur...
PAX Exclusive T-Shirts in production!
PAX West: Build
PAX attendees can expect to play a short slice of introductory gameplay designed to familiarise players with some of Prehistoric Kingdom’s exhibit creation tools.
Taking the helm as the new park manager of an almost operational island, it’s your job to follow requests from the Board of Directors to successfully populate the park with a happy and healthy herd of Edmontosaurus.
As this is an exhibit-focused build and the first playable iteration with our current features, certain building categories will be disabled for the sake of streamlining the user experience at the convention.
Alongside continuing previously scheduled work, our programmers have been focused on completing specific requirements for PAX that also go towards meeting development milestones we set for future playable builds.
July oversaw the biggest development leaps with the management interface, but also animal locomotion and pathfinding, which are a massive upgrade from the respective demo’s systems.
As you also might notice in the graphic below, the "Pre-Alpha 2: Management" box got its color updated this month, as we worked on some of the management systems needed for the future.
Inverse Kinematics & AI Navigation
As you have probably gathered by now, much of this month’s development time was put into making our animals move around. Matt has always been vocal about updating the locomotion system of the demo, and he’s finally got a chance to shine - he laid the foundations for an all-around superior locomotion.
He implemented IK’s for both the animal’s limbs and heads, not only virtually removing any sort of sliding or shifting to the feet once in movement, but also allowing for a more believable ground adaptation. Moreover, animals can dynamically move their heads around points of interest, further adding to a life-like appearance.
While there is obviously much more work to be put into locomotion and overall AI, we hope you’ll enjoy this sample of what we’ve been doing. Even as a work in progress, this trumps anything we’ve done in the past on the matter.
Management: Inbox System & Offers
In charge of the core gameplay progression, Mau spent time working on some of the features needed for August’s PAX build - inbox and offers.
These are some of the first management features we started working on ahead of time, as they are vital to a park’s natural growth and spice the gameplay up with that extra edge of challenge. We have shown concept graphics for offers in the past, but now we managed to actually lay down the framework necessary to craft any kind of contract or offer in the future, in a very dynamic and customizable way.
Equally as important, an inbox system allows the park owner to receive many kinds of notifications, ranging from the aforementioned offers, to dig results, forecast alerts, financial reports, and even rating increases. While not incredibly flashy in its current state, the system we built also allows for simple further implementation of different message types in the future.
Nearly 22 weeks since we began our species spotlights all of the 1-2 star creatures have been shown! Leading the next set of creatures with Ceratosaurus, the team hopes you’ve enjoyed the weekly journey so far.
Tropical Dry Foliage
The tropical dry climate is home to some iconic plant species that are going to make quite a few of your Jurassic animals always feel at home.
Taking inspiration from the world’s great dry plains, we are sure you will recognize imposing trees such as the Acacia and the Baobab.
Finishing off our structure list for Pre-Alpha 1, Nathan created the next observation-based attraction. Providing an elevated position for your guests to survey your park, the Lookout Tower provides a unique vantage point.
Similarly, the Viewing Platform’s texture set was updated to better unify the two viewing attractions and conserve memory. Those with keen eyes may even spot the unique ammonite floor tiling!
This month Byron began work on creature sound redesigns, beginning with Edmontosaurus. With a completely reworked sound set, we can’t help but love the new sounds of our weird Hell Creek behemoth.
Every so often we’ll be uploading small sound updates to our Facebook and Twitter accounts to show a selection of audio from a featured animal. Any reveals throughout the month will be recapped here, so don’t worry if you miss one!
With few feathers ruffled, Cindy finished up the redux of our Oviraptor philoceratops! Featuring pronounced sexual dimorphism across males and females, this alleged “egg thief” (not guilty!) is a must-have for any startup park with its uniquely bird-like looks and movement.
Huge improvements were brought to the new Oviraptor model with drastic alterations to the skull and its feathers thanks to our new technique. Out of all the enhanced creatures shown so far, we personally feel that this is by far the most improved.
In the same vein, Gallimimus bullatus also received a much-needed update. As one of the earliest animals to be modelled, this fluffy ratite-like theropod underwent several upgrades across the project’s history. With our recent wave of animal updates, we thought it would be a good idea to give it one last revision, and with what results! Our beloved ‘chicken mimic’ got a brand new coat of feathers, and looks better than ever!
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Thank you for reading July’s Devlog!
August is going to be the month we show the world (although, on a more limited scale) one of the very first playable versions of what is eventually going to become the full build, so we have reasons to be both very excited and incredibly horrified (it’s gonna be fine, right?).
- The PK Team