Welcome to June’s Development Update!
We are steadily moving towards the Beta release, with a feeling of anticipation growing within the team. Many of the gameplay systems required to move the game forward are coming together, so it’s a very exciting time to be working on the project!
While there’s no set Beta release date we can share at this moment, we can give you an insight into our process as we approach this next milestone. Other than obviously completing the gameplay systems we started, the main goals for these coming months include completing a large volume of art assets (such as animal animations, buildings, modular structure, etc.) as well as balancing the core gameplay loop. This second objective is especially important, since gameplay is built from a multitude of interconnected moving parts. As a team, this is our first time tackling such a complex task, so we want to take the necessary time needed to make the player experience enjoyable.
With that being said, let’s take a dive into this month’s development progress!
Created by Warpath.
June had a large focus on background work and optimization, but it also allowed us to work on a bunch of new and exciting features for the game.
First up, object recolouring. This is something that we’re trying to build a robust framework for, but it’s coming along very well. While the system isn’t quite ready enough to be properly shown off, we’re excited to confirm that many objects in Prehistoric Kingdom will be fully recolorable, with some even having multiple color choices for their patterns. We’re hoping to give a more in-depth look into this colorful beast of a system in July’s Devlog, so hang tight!
Next up, music! Our dynamic music system is a first for Prehistoric Kingdom, as it allows us to contextually pick or manipulate tracks using data driven by players and the state of their park. It’s really quite powerful, and we’re looking forward to getting the most out of it.
Finally, the team took a look at optimizing various parts of the game. Modular pieces are now instanced (like painted forests), though more testing is required to see just how much of an improvement it could be. Selection graphics have also been reworked, allowing us to bring back effects like object highlights without affecting performance. Overall, these changes could be quite beneficial for larger parks or actions like selecting big modular groups.
Power & Building Management
Electric power is one of the major cornerstones of modern civilization. This rings especially true in Prehistoric Kingdom, unless you plan on escaped carnivores being part of the tour experience! With the importance of this mechanic being so high, we spent a better part of June introducing new electrifying depths to the power system.
Power generators are now capable of failing on their own, requiring a reboot to get them running again. Their chance of turning off is based on a failure rate; influenced by the type of generator, its effective range, and structural integrity.
Using the new selection graphics, the visuals for our power range and network have been significantly improved since alpha, too.
A generator’s range can be manipulated by players to increase/decrease the chance of failure.
Similarly, all infrastructure and guest facilities take damage over time. Once an initial warranty period has expired, they become susceptible to age, and of course, various weather conditions.
As a building’s structural integrity falls, its monthly upkeep increases until the building eventually shuts down. Occasionally checking up on your park and looking for buildings in need of repair will help keep the costs lower and your guests satisfied for longer.
Day/Night Cycle & Weather
As nightfall arrives, the park springs anew. Illuminating the paths and boulevards, lights activate across the zoo to bring another dimension of life to your Prehistoric Kingdom.
It’s more than just pretty looking fluff, however. Both nighttime and the now implemented weather system reduce the effectiveness of basic power solutions. Solar panels and wind turbines are less than ideal depending on the availability of sunlight or during strong rainstorms.
Weather patterns change on a monthly basis, offering unique alterations to both visual aesthetics and management conditions. Over the course of an in-game year, players can discover seasonal variations on their chosen map. Wet and dry seasons provide tropical locales with a distinctly damp flair, while colder environments see chilling drops in the temperature.
Weather transitions (sped up).
This is simply a first look at some of the weather options coming to the game, so we hope you’re excited to see how it improves in the future!
To help brighten your park at night, we’ve added over 20 modern lights to the game. With options suitable for ceilings, floors, walls and the outdoors, park managers can flex their creative muscles in a huge number of ways.
We’ve made sure to offer varying degrees of design complexity so that users can more easily create custom light fixtures using the modular building system. And yes, they’re all recolorable!
Coming to beta is the majestic Camarasaurus, arriving with all three alternate species. Though this animal is smaller than some of its Jurassic cousins, we think this creature will quickly become a staple sauropod of parks in the future.
The team’s made some adjustments to the animal since it was last shown off. Better facial anatomy, tweaks to the sculpt and revised skins make this Morrison giant the best it can be.
Created by Jackosaur.
Created by Sdanwolf.
Created by JurassicSmashed.
Thank you for reading June’s devlog!
We hope you enjoyed this month’s report, and are just as excited as us for the next release. Should all go well, we will be ready to announce the Beta launch date in either of the two next devlogs, so keep those beady eyes peeled!
Until next time,
- The PK Team