Welcome to January’s development update!
This Devlog marks the beginning of our second year of hands-on development, following 2018’s year of pre-production and planning. It might seem like a long time, but we managed to accomplish a lot of great things during the past twelve months. 2020 is going to be filled with a lot of milestones for Prehistoric Kingdom, so the most exciting news is yet ahead, park builders!
Over the past month, we’ve been searching for a potential candidate to join the programming team on Prehistoric Kingdom. Finalising a lengthy interview process, the newest team member will be joining us shortly to help develop additional gameplay systems.
Assisting with the weight of development, Matt’s been working on automating animal setup as much as possible. Since the dinosaurs and mammals are such an integral part of the game’s experience, an automated pipeline will greatly assist in providing templates where possible to avoid wasting time with manual setup.
January also allowed us to plan milestones and alpha-related content deadlines to hit certain marketing opportunities. With our eyes on releasing alpha at an unspecified date this year, it’s important to put production deadlines in place.
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Modular Building: Selection
Modular pieces can now be selected and moved around! While it may sound simple in concept, the system needed to be robust enough to work with multiple pieces at once with the added functionality of moving across a grid at varying scales with no room for error.
With selection developed, we’ve integrated an outline when placing objects to ensure that players can see the location of their piece at all times regardless of obstructions.
Modular Building: Recoloring Walls
Based on the concept art from last month, Mau is almost done with the functionality for recoloring roof and wall pieces.
Each material type comes with its own bank of recent colors that can be easily transferred to another texture by copy and pasting its hex values. The default setting can be returned to by dismissing its small color preview on the material button.
Ugly development textures and all!
With user experience always a priority, there’s been a handful of technical challenges to overcome with designing a system like this. Nevertheless, the team’s continued to find solutions where it matters in an attempt to evolve the usability of modular building systems in the genre.
Two popular Cenozoic icons were shown off in-game this month with their new designs revealed to the public. Opposing each other with drastically different temperature requirements, the Smilodon and Woolly Mammoth are essential beasts in Prehistoric Kingdom’s roster.
Once roaming the lush forests of ancient North America, Acrocanthosaurus prowls with a menacing stature. With a unique shape courtesy of its infamous raised spine, Mau’s animation helps to bring this shy carnivorous giant to life.
Coexisting with ferocious predators, Camarasaurus is a staple sauropod of the Morrison Formation. Known from three distinct species, this animal is far more nimble than its larger relatives!
As a blast from the past, we’d like to show you the updated vocals for Camarasaurus. Introduced to our community all the way back in the Jurassic Patch, Byron’s done a complete overhaul on its sound set to better convey this dinosaur’s enormous scale.
Sounds sourced from seals, walruses, spider monkeys, manatees and even more animals were used to create the new sounds for this sauropod.
Without good implementation, even the best sound design can fall flat when integrated into a game environment. By using audio middleware like FMOD, the sound team can create custom sequences and parameters accessible by programmers in order to deliver on a far more detailed soundscape with better user interactivity.
We’re only experimenting at this stage but so far the results have been promising. Things like distant carnivores roaring with the appropriate reverb falloff, footstep weight increasing as animals age and a more dynamic ambient soundscape are all areas Byron’s managed to create using the toolset.
The team looks to begin integrating this new audio system shortly!
One of our many experiments for an age-based footstep event.
With their anatomy vastly improved, Cindy continues to show off her skill with the newest sculpts and textures for Smilodon and Mammuthus. Staples of the Ice Age aesthetic, the updated iterations of these creatures have a far greater resemblance to what we know the prehistoric beasts looked like.
If you’d like to see more renders, check out Cindy’s ArtStation for a better look at the animals!
Created by HELP.
Created by ASSASSINSPINO.
Created by HELP.
Thank you for reading January’s Devlog!
There are some good surprises in store for the community in the following months that we can’t quite talk about yet, but we promise they’ll be worth the wait. Make sure to tune into the following development updates for even more gameplay news!
Until next time,
- The PK Team
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