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About the game and the backstory

The Rituals of the old is an easily customizable sandbox multiplayer voxel building game with stories and adventure plus a well designed modding API.

Rituals of the old takes place in the distant past of mankind. In the last 100 000 years the humanity has spread throughout the galaxy, progressing and regressing in an endless cycle of war and disaster. Countless of civilizations have risen and fallen to dust, forgotten forever.

It is yet again the end of the era of enlightenment.

Our story begins on a small and unadvanced planet untouched by war. Generations have passed since the fall of the great galactic imperium in a war of attrition against infighting factions and the technologically superior technoharmadan - both civilizations now extinquished by atomic sparks.

The fall of the Great Galactic Imperium has freed the simple people of Koto from a life serfdom and servitude. Hushed whispers of social change are spreading slowly. The worship of the old gods once banned by the cult of the immortal sun emperor is being resurrected in secret. Brigands and dark creatures have been seen in the countryside. There have even been rumors about the resurrection of... the rituals of the old.



Technology and other details

The technology in the game is a mix of medieval, modern and futuristic with the main focus on medieval. You might for example see a guard wearing a chain mail armor scouting the perimeter of a town wielding an energy weapon, one of the very last few of it's kind.

The items and technology that you mostly see in the game are items like swords and old tools. There will be blacksmiths, tailors, bakers, windmills, etc.

And of course there will be ritual magic and ancient creatures. But magic and witchcraft are taboos and witches are burnt on stake.

You will see bandits, brigands, guilds, religions, strange languages, otherworldly spirits, farm animals, wild animals and other creatures.

The mood of the game is that of a melancholy beauty. Not dark but not too sugary either.

The game is semi-realistic as a rule and the difficulty is hard but not artificially so and without too much grinding. You will need others to survive.


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The world gets it's shape

News

We apologize to all our fanatics that this blog post took us so long.

The reason for that is that we've been mostly working on internal engine stuff and putting things together. Necessary work, but not particularly glorious or interesting. Nonetheless we've been hard at work.

Holidays

Summer holidays came and went and a lot of our team members took their families on vacation for a couple of weeks.

World map generation

I've been working on our world generator, Weltschmerz. Weltschmerz is a complex world generator which generates a natural biome distribution for the world by using helper maps for temperature, air pressure, wind, precipitation, etc.to simulate real world conditions.

Our work is based on the excellent Master's Thesis "Realistic biome generation for procedural maps using essential cilmate principles" by Thomas Wurstle (Tenjix.de)

I hit some problems with wind simulation and the work took longer than I expected, but it is working now.

Here are pictures of some generation phases being debuged:

wgis 01

wgis 03


In order to achieve the greatest possible accuracy, I began testing generation on height maps of Earth (courtesy of NASA).

For comparison here's an image of the actual Earth:

wgis 04

And here is the resulting map from Weltschmerz:

wgis 06

Here is our UI that we use for testing the setting:

wgis 07

The map is interactive and updates in real time. Unfortunately issues with noise generation caused us performance problems, so we had to turn it off for now.

Non-block terrain objects

Another thing we've added are non-block terrain objects, which are essentially blocks that have a custom mesh and can be of various sizes, for example tree trunks, leafy branches, fences, flowers, etc.

My principle is to generate a box around the object and then fill it with voxels. After that I put the blocks in the chunks.

Here is my first attempt with grass:

wgis 08

If you are observant enough you will see in the image above that the textures have flipped upside down because of a bug. It tooks us a while to notice it.

wgis 09

Above you can see the latest voxel world test with a lonely birch tree.

Themiddleman has been working on octree code to get our octree/chunk hybrid up and running properly. For the moment octrees are disabled and we're using only chunks.

We have transitioned from greedy meshing to voxel splatting. A splatter creates blocks from a single vertex by creating the geometry with a shader.


Octree test:

wgis 10

New team member and skybox

We have a new... old team member! Welcome back, Glor! He's helping us with with code when he has time from his studies. He is currently working on a skybox so that the world would be a little bit prettier:

wgis 11

The clouds and terrain in the above screenshot are faked at the moment. This is a very preliminary version with only a cubemap that can be rotated. It is still missing day and night cycle, real clouds, sun, moon, stars, etc.

What is next?

  • Finishing the octrees
  • Finishing the splatter
  • Essential interaction with the world
  • Constant terrain generation
  • Graphical improvements
  • Saving the generated world
  • Optimizations
  • Physics
  • Networking
  • Testing

Join the team?

We are always looking for more talented members. Do you think you could help?

Check out our Indiedb page:

Indiedb.com

Or write to us directly, contact information can be found on our web page:

Starandserpent.com

Star and Serpent team greets you and looks forward to seeing you next time!

Cheers,

Pawlost

World generation update

World generation update

News

Time for another blog post. It has been almost a month since I last made an update, but we have made great progress in world generation.

Weltschmerz

Weltschmerz

News

Hello, I'm Pawlost! I'm a new programmer in the Star and Serpent dev team, and I'll tell you a little bit about my work. I've been working on Weltschmerz...

Dear development diary...

Dear development diary...

News

I’ve been neglecting you. I’m sorry. I know it’s not a good excuse, but I’ve had so much development work to do I haven’t been motivated to...

Wagons and carriages

Wagons and carriages

News

Been working on an undercarriage of a wagon. The idea is that players can build their own horse drawn wagons and carriages block by block on top of undercarriage...

Comments
Corbul
Corbul

A bit confused as to what it is, but will track for now.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+3 votes
Pilvinen Creator
Pilvinen

I know what it is... but you've hit the heart of the problem! It's really difficult to express "What is Rituals of the old" in as few words as possible. I've been trying to work ON and OFF on that for several months and I'm never really happy with the result.

Rituals of the old ... is a multiplayer sandbox RPG voxel game that takes place ~100 000 years in the past in an alternate timeline on another planet. But that's just the history, background story and lore.

You build stuff, you craft things and you explore the world. You live an alternate life in a world with medieval'ish world with some futuristic scifi elements - from the PAST - and the game has a lot of focus on economy, society and tries to support roleplaying between players with good design decisions.

Pirates, livable and buildable gypsy wagons, robbers, ships and airships (hopefully), alcohol brewing, drugs, torture, farming, magic, animal husbandry, semi-realistic (hard) survival, seasons, black powder guns and cannons, gore, swords, windmills, (hard) mining, realistic little details, ancient technology (electronics), steam machines (hopefully) off the top of my head.

Sounds confusing? I suppose it is. I might have to give up trying to explain it and just let everything speak for itself.

The concepts themselves have been tested for several years as a mod on another game platform and I have to say it worked very well.

There is hope for us yet!

I'm sorry I did not reply earlier but it seems Indiedb does not send me notifications for comments.

But I'm happy to discuss everything about Rituals of the old at length and really love feedback and ideas. Best way to reach me is through our forums or through our Discord chat channel.

I will link both here:

Ritualsoftheold.com
Discord.gg

Reply Good karma+3 votes
Corbul
Corbul

This actually sounds really cool! Kind of a shame its a multiplayer (only?) game (since my connection won't let me play it properly), but to each their own, i guess.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Pilvinen Creator
Pilvinen

I'm sorry to hear you don't have a proper internet connection.

The main focus is definitely on multiplayer. Personally I don't really much care about single player games in this genre.

But be as it may - we're going to have a single player mode also and it's going to be free, as in 0$.

We're going to run the multiplayer server locally for the single player mode so it won't require very much extra effort from us to make it happen.

Some features which depend on internet connectivity or on the help of other people might have to be turned off but a great majority of features will be there.

And it also makes financially sense for us to release the single player mode for free - we should be receiving a lot more attention since you can just download the game and start playing the single player. And if you like it and want to play with others - that's how we're going to try to make the game's continued development viable, by selling multiplayer keys.

Reply Good karma+3 votes
Corbul
Corbul

Ok then :)

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
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Rituals of the old
Platforms
Windows, Mac, Linux
Developer & Publisher
Star and Serpent
Engine
jMonkeyEngine
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Latest tweets from @pilvinen2

I'm a little teapot, Short and stout, Here is my handle Here is my spout. 😅 #gamedev #IndieGameDevT.co

Aug 23 2019

Do you remember when you joined Twitter? I do! #MyTwitterAnniversary T.co

Aug 22 2019

Still looking for #java #coders for our voxel game project: Indiedb.com Java coder, you're our only h… T.co

Aug 11 2019

Trying to get some models updated for our website which deplorably out of date. #gamedev #indiedev #indiegamedevT.co

Jun 17 2019

Testing cross-chunk elevation AKA "stairway to heaven". Still in early stages. Ritualsoftheold.com #gamedevT.co

May 30 2019

Birch textures are done. Ritualsoftheold.com #gamedev #indiedev #indiegamedev #texture T.co

May 29 2019

Weltschmerz (our world generator) is now connected with Terra (our #voxel engine). This is only a very preliminary… T.co

Apr 24 2019

Did someone say #inversekinematics ? Yeaaa, it's working! 😍 #gamedev #indiedev #screenshotsaturday #games T.co

Feb 4 2019

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