Greetings friends and fellow internet denizens!
We are back to discuss all things open world and doggo in Lost Paws. Over the course of the summer, we have made many adjustments and changes as well as added a ton of new content to the game. The overall design goal was to adjust things based on your initial feedback, add much more to explore in the game, and refine various systems in the game to give things a better feeling and flow.
We have changed various sections of the world and shifted parts of the map around. Firstly, we made a few things bigger to fit better with the dog and humans. As a result, we changed several buildings in town. We added a hotel, car repair shop, and cafe. In order to make the spaces feel good with the new sizes, we had to expand the number of building to give the alleyways a real feeling of closeness which actually contrasted quite nicely with the wide open spaces in nature. Overall the new building should give a better feel for the town and many new places to explore to find treats!
The new hotel being built:
In addition to the town, a whole new area was made as a little side area for you to explore. It includes a mall, a vet, the pound, and a few houses. This place will be where you will likely end up if you end up having a fateful demise as the vet and pound are where you will spawn if something goes wrong. But it is more than just a place to respawn. It will eventually be built up to give the player new options to find new items and serve as a stopping point in the long adventure toward the city. It gives the traveling doggo a great place to stop and get items to keep going.
The Vet getting built up:
In addition to civilization, nature also got some attention. The Ronald River was finally added before entering the city. The grass all over has been optimized with GPU instancing and have had its shaders modified to look better in the new environment. New boundary areas have been set up to make the distant areas look better. Log cabins have also been added to give a little character to the woods. Overall these new areas should give many opportunities for you to play the way you want.
Let there be Sound
Another big element was a ton of sound effects. Most interactions now have a sound associated with them giving more feel to the game. In addition, ambient sounds were added to certain zones with fading based on where you are located. Examples of new sounds are people screaming when the dog gets hostile, the dog panting, people grunting when hit, and more dog lover sounds when interacting. More sounds will be added in the future but many core interactions now have them.
Another thing that was added was new NPCs. Our NPC system is like our spawner system in that they spawn when you enter an area. This is done to ensure that every time the experience is a little different each time you play. NPCs that are not special are bunched together into crowds making them easier to work with. We have many new crowds up and working, which walk about and can interact with the dog. The variety of them and how they spawn have been enhanced to prevent too many of their body doubles from showing up. About 7 new character types have been added and many more variations of those characters are available to make up new crowds. Together the new NPCs and system changes should make the town feel even more alive.
Sample of a new crowd:
Build the systems
A few other systems have been changed or added. Firstly the cars have received a massive overhaul. They now patrol the town going to various places as time goes on. They also adhere to left and right lane traffic flows as well as have timer controls making them more lifelike. Certainly makes navigating the town more interesting!
On top of that, the dog can now be an extra good boy and sit. In the future when the dog sits, NPCs will interact with the Dog. Right now the main focus is to have the dog lover pet the dog when sitting near the dog lover. Any other suggestions are welcome!
Hope you enjoyed this dev log of some of what we worked on so far this summer! We plan on showing more as things development progresses. If you want to stay up to date and support Lost Paws please wishlist the game on steam. It helps out a ton!