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Monthly Dev Report

You might have noticed that we made some changes on the website’s home page.

Indeed, for the upcoming alpha release, we would like to have a home page which is easier to read, clearer, simpler, and which puts the focus on the game.

Regarding the alpha, we are doing everything we can to release it this month. We still have some major bugs to fix before reaching a level of stability suited for a release. The whole team looks forward to seeing you test our last 5 months’ work!

By the way, the next news will be the announcement of the alpha. So it is possible that it won’t be in two weeks as usual.

This alpha version not only gives you the opportunity to test functionalities, but it also gives us the chance to test some of the graphic choices planned to be used in the project. The following video shows one of these graphic tests.
It is part of an analysis phase which aims to determine what is feasible and what is not. The artistic direction becomes more refined every day using the lessons we learn from these tests.

Monthly Dev Report

Technical, visual and sound improvements


Forest preview

We are still working on the gameplay but we have nothing to show you today. We worked on the AI, combats, generation, scenery and on the sound environment. In the upcoming days we will be working on the interaction between the player’s character and the NPCs which is required for the roleplay side of Planets³.

Here is a video showing the results of a first iteration on the block explosion algorithms and the implementation of the blocks’ level (the weapon launches level 1 projectiles, the grass and dirt are also level 1, but the trees’ roots are level 2).



And here is another video showing the progress made on the external sceneries.



We have come a long way since the in-game results of 2012!

Game First Steps

Image Gallery


You might have noticed that a new tab has appeared in the website’s main menu: the gallery.

You now have a place to share your screenshots and concept arts.
You will also find wallpapers about the game that you can download.

Feel free to use the gallery and to show us your most beautiful images!

Musical Choices and world generation

Musical Choices


This week we would like to talk about our musical choices, and to let you listen to two of our music.

In the game, the soundscapes (music and sound design) will be a mix of realism and fantasy. Regarding the sound design, it will be a mix between realistic background sounds and fanciful creatures. The music will be composed of orchestral instruments mixed with synthesizers in order to further identify Planets³’s world. In the final game, music will follow in real time the global progression of the player, to give more importance to his actions. It could, for example, intensify or decrease in magnitude according to the player’s progression in a location.

Here is one of the music WonderB created for space:



And one of the music of the moor:



There will be several versions of this music in the moor, with multiple variations, so that the musical experience can always be different.

Development


Of course, we are also making progress on the gameplay and the world generation. The enemies AI is beginning to be interesting (player detection, basic attacks, and so on…), we implemented the death of the player and his respawn, the possibility to regain health, the interaction with objects of the scenery (like a door or an interactive “terminal”), and the ability to equip a weapon.

Regarding the generation, we use what we call “doodads”. A doodad is a decorative element which we place at specific locations, like a tree, or an herb, but also parts of a dungeon or the houses of a village (even if this doesn’t exist in the game yet). And for each of these doodads, we have the possibility to create multiple alternative versions, to render the game less monotonous. We implemented this feature recently, and here is a screenshot to better illustrate it:

Doodads

On this picture you can see that all the trees of a same kind are not identical.

Share our news on Facebook and Twitter


On the Web side, we added a new feature, enabling you to share the news (and it will also be used for other elements of the website later on). By clicking on these new buttons, you are now able to share the news on your Facebook or Twitter account. Feel free to use them to help Planets³ attract attention!

Last news of the year

2014-12-17 General

The biomes development goes on.


This month we’d like to show you, using a video concept, a preview of a biome’s artistic development.



The relief, the sky, the trees, the foliage, the water, the clouds, the sun, the lens flares, the bloom, the ambient light, the occlusion are important elements subject to the reflection of the artistic team day after day.

We are eager to show you the fruits of this work, in game this time, when we are ready.

The pre-alpha postponed.


Today the quality of the game, migrated to Epic Games’ engine, is not satisfying enough to deliver a version. So we prefer to postpone the pre-alpha for a few weeks and are hoping to be able to release it in January 2015.

For your information, this pre-alpha version is nothing else than the September’s prototype migrated to Unreal Engine with a "simple" multiplayer layer. The new gameplay features (combat / craft) are to be included in the Alpha which will be released a few months later.



The whole Cubical Drift team wishes you Happy Holidays.
See you in 2015 for a decisive year for Planets³ and its community!

Animasia Exhibition

2014-10-08 General

Exhibition


Guyk, Mick, Reymantha and NeoM have traveled to Bordeaux for the Animasia exhibition and everything went well! We have met approximatively 500 people and we have had only positive feedbacks about the game and the concept.
It has been a great adventure especially since we had the pleasure to come across a dozen of you!

The team

For francophones : here is an interview realized on the exhibition and which has already been broadcast at the time this news is written :



Web


You have access to some new features on the web site:

  • Kickstarter backers who have chosen this reward can now choose a monster or boss name in the “My account” page on the web site.
  • We added a RSS feed on the news, since many among you have asked for it for several weeks.
  • You now have the possibility to follow a topic on the forum. It will then appear in the followed topics list on the homepage of the forum.

Forum popularity system

2014-09-25 General
Today we present you a new feature on the forum : the popularity system!

You can now like (or dislike) messages on the forum. You can also sort messages by “popularity” instead of sorting them by date.

popularity system

We have also inserted a “search” functionality. This will allow you to search for specific “words” among all messages in the forum.

A new dev team member

2014-09-17 General
We are happy to introduce a new team member : “Mick” (Mickaël Parisot is his real name).
You can find a summary of his profile on the “Team” page of the website here.
Hiring a new developer was planned but not so quickly, but meeting Mickaël before summer, was a wonderful coincidence. Given his generalist profile with a predilection for networking, his video game development experience and his human contact, we didn’t need a long reflection time to decide to hire him!

For those of you who know it, he his the creator of WonderWorld, an independant 2D game project which has lot in common with Planets³.
He has now dropped this project in favor of Planets³.

He has started working with us at the beginning of September and he will be in charge of the implementation of Planets³ network layer. Also he actively participates to the game design and code architecture.

The team with Mick
Guyk / NeoM / Mick / Altalus
Reymantha / CodingMarmot


Since the release of the prototype, the dev team has started a long design and development phase, the goal being multiplayer addition and rendering optimization.

Meanwhile the artistic team started to iterate through the different biomes (animals and vegetation).
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