This week I don’t have anything all that exciting to talk about. I’ve been working on a lot of documentation and evaluating things like our AI and logging it all into individual documents for the team to review. I’ve finalized the next “mini-mission” which will be our interactive tutorial for the game. It will be a fully scripted interactive mission in itself that we will no doubt need to revise and update as new features come online over the duration of the Alpha.
I’ve also finished putting together a complete review of the first mission “Outbreak” which includes everything from written dialogue that will need to be added, revised and re-recorded. Included are requested changes to gameplay mechanics that upon release were not quite up to snuff with the original design due to time constraints of our rapidly approaching launch date. I’ve also done some general bug fixing here and there as well as some optimizations to lighting and reducing draw calls.
Finally I’m excited to announce that in the near future two new zombie archetypes will be introduced to the game, I’ll have a proper update about that next week hopefully.
My main focus this week has been the Slot Saving and Loading. It is taking quite a bit of time since there are a lot of things that need to be saved and they each have their own states and other properties that need saving. It’s going very well overall though.
I also created and put out a Development Roadmap for 2018.
The firing range now has an interactable system allowing the player to load different challenges! The computer next to the firing range table is able to load CDs, and each disk has a different challenge. For right now, all the challenge CDs are all located next to the computer..but we are thinking of new ideas about how to handle progression; eventually there may be CDs hidden throughout the world that you can find and bring back to the firing range to provide new challenges and experiences.
This week I finished setting up all new Volumes, Portals, Sound FX, Ambient Audio, etc for SP_City and StageA_BufferZone and will complete StageA_Building this week. I improved the existing Portals and Volumes so that the audio playing comes across more accurately and of better quality.
To improve performance I created a simple Blueprint to grab current map on map load, check which SoundBanks to load and which to unload, and start up ambient audio after a minor delay which should help speed up map load as well.
This week I've spent some time going over the zombies movement, have resolved issues with zombies getting pushed through walls, smoothed out the walking of AI, worked with Paul on new zombie variant (thug archetype), worked some more on the melee system, and am reworking the Soldier archetype to give it a bit more spiciness.
This week I worked with Lawrence to put in place the thug zombie, also I re-skinned the mesh for the thug archetype so we can get a real beefcake of a Z. I continued work on the remaining physics assets for the zombies, so should be even more variety of physically-animated undead goodness in your game soon.