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CardLife is an online multiplayer survival game set in a cardboard Science Fantasy world - think Dragons, Mechs, Magic, Lasers & Dinosaurs. CardLife is super mod-friendly, and we're excited to build the world together with you, the players!

Post news Report RSS Dev Blog 93 - Reactive World - Trailer And Wishlist On Steam!

What happens when a world's resources are depleted? Or if entire mountains are destroyed? What about abandoned structures that are left half finished? CardLife’s Reactive World system will tackle some of those questions. Game Director Rich has shared details on how this will work in game currently, and the plan for the future:

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What happens when a world's resources are depleted? Or if entire mountains are destroyed? What about abandoned structures that are left half finished? CardLife’s Reactive World system will tackle some of those questions. Game Director Rich has shared details on how this will work in game currently, and the plan for the future:

Reactive World

The following explanation is only relevant to official multiplayer servers - this does not affect singleplayer or player hosted servers.

The intention for the official gameplay servers on CardLife is that they last forever and the server that you pick becomes a persistent home for your character. Obviously this leads to certain challenges in terms of performance and resource management. Let me explain - the world is a finite place and over its lifetime could potentially house 10000’s of players. Each one of those players can edit the terrain, place structures and mine ores. If we did nothing eventually the server would run out of ores, have millions of terrain edits and have millions of buildings - this would be bad for both players trying to find materials and the performance would be really poor.

So, we need a way of cleaning up the servers over time so they don’t become unplayable without actually affecting normal gameplay. This would entail 3 things:

  1. Removing old structures of players who no longer play
  2. Replenishing the ores in the world
  3. Resetting edits in the world

This is where our Reactive World comes in - which if you have ever read the planned features on our homepage says:

”From earthquakes that reshape the world to game changing events that awaken the toughest monsters. Every edit has a consequence.”

But what does that actually mean? As we continue development, the Reactive World system will be introduced via several phases.

For our first phase we want to implement a system that triggers in-game natural disasters like earthquakes that causes old unmaintained structures (i.e. buildings owned by players who no longer play) to fall down leaving their contents to be salvaged by lucky treasure hunters. As part of this ores would disappear and reappear in new locations and terrain edits (i.e. tunnels, flattened mountains etc) to be reformed back to their original state as the cardboard tectonic plates shifted beneath the world.

Eventually, earthquakes will appear in game. Below is a work in progress gif

Earthquake Gif 002 OPtimised2

Fortunately though if a terrain edit is located nearby to a maintained structure (e.g.if you placed a torch, foundation, plank etc in your tunnel) - it would be classed as being reinforced so it wouldn’t reset. This means active players can place down structures in their mines or flatten a mountain and build a house on top of it and it would not be removed/reset. But if a player stopped playing, eventually their structures would decay and fall down and then their terrain edits would reset - just like a mine in real life - the internal structures that were reinforcing it would rot and decay over time and eventually the mine would collapse.

But materials decay at different rates and this is also the case in CardLife. So if you stop playing - your wooden house will fall down before your iron house does - which also reflects the amount of effort required to acquire the tougher building materials. Not to mention they will be tougher for when we implement base raiding. The current decay rates are as follows:

Table  Decay

These are the current desired values right now but we may need to change them depending on client/server performance.

Although it is worth noting if you give someone permission to your structure (using the permissions console) - the timer will also reset when they log in as well. We will also be adding the decay rates to the tooltips of the all the structures/decorations so it is signposted in-game.

At the moment though - we do not have the time to implement in-game earthquakes - so we have had to resort to writing a script that simulates the outcome of an earthquake. Then during scheduled maintenance we will run the script that removes old buildings, resets non-reinforced edits and replenishes ores. We will then add natural disasters in a future update post Steam. Obviously this is a big change - but an absolutely necessary one and the intention is that if you are an active player - it won't actually change your gameplay much.

Once again to be clear - this only affects official multiplayer servers - although players will eventually have the option to turn it on for their own dedicated servers if they want too. It has no effect on singleplayer.


We are also pleased to announce that the release date for CardLife on Steam will be October 9th! The team are in the final stages of development and are focusing their efforts on polish and bug fixing to bring you the best game possible once it launches on Steam. Make sure to add it to your wishlist to be kept up to date with the release. To celebrate this major milestone we have created a brand new trailer for CardLife. Check it out below:

Visit the Steam Page and add CardLife to your wishlist now by clicking the widget below!

Let us know what you think of the incoming Reactive World system. If you have any questions, let us know in the forums, Twitter, Facebook and Reddit.

All the best,

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