Another week of updates, and this one was quite the workload! Last week we began introducing our work in progress nodes concept. This week we took that concept to the table and started getting things to work. A lot of smart techniques went into making what we have possible so far and I'd like to share what went down here.
Now as you can tell from this image that was posted in the last devlog
There are A LOT of nodes involved here. And mapping this up by hand would probably have taken the entire week. As many of you already know, the team is known for creating dev tools outside of DM (a tactic Zane enforces), to allow us to create content at during game time, and we currently have dev tools set up for our grid maps, NPCs (and various other legacy systems). This time I decided to take a different route. Nodes are static, and are not something that need to be changed during game hours, however it still needed a way to have them created not by hand because that would just take too long.
So to keep things short, this is the end product -
(everything including the large nodes are connected, just needs an updated gif)
In order to achieve this, when the game starts up, it scans the entire image pixel by pixel and starts sorting based on patterns found. It is able to detect where nodes are, what their sizes are, what nodes they are, and what nodes they're connected to.
This whole system took 3 days to complete. So why do this? There are over 400 nodes involved in this tree, and that's incredibly overwhelming to have to hard code all locations and connections for each. If Zane changes connections or moves nodes around, the only thing that'll need to happen is a rescan of the image to update.
SulLight has been working on completing the animation from last weeks devlog
You'll probably be seeing more iterations of this as we move forward, but it's really shaping up!
With this hard stuff out of the way (this node system took a lot of our attention this week), we're looking to complete the tree by next week. We'll be moving onto classes soon and I can't for us to report on those. Zane has already started working on the techniques (both document + art wise). A lot to look forward to! See you all next week!