Chris

21st July Progress Update

13 posts in this topic

With the news that the forums and sites are back up, and I've fixed Desura Connect etc, we are back to where we were 7-8 days ago. Yay! Thankfully, though, the entire project hasn't been caught in a massive time warp so it's probably worth mentioning what we've been working on recently.

Our current plans are to release a build next weekend, though I'll give more details on what will be in it (and in future builds) in a seperate post.

The first thing to mention is hiring. We've chosen our new level designer, a fellow called Adam, and yesterday I got him set up on the SVN and on our baug tracking software. His role on the team will be to be in charge of the tiles and maps. It'll be useful to have one person setting up all the tiles and tile properties, and dealing with mis-set tiles when reported in the bug forums. This will no longer be me (it was a big timesink) and it should lead to more consistency across the tilesets.

Also, it means that shortly he will start generating new maps for everyone to play - so we won't be stuck on the same maps over and over again as we are now. It may take a good few weeks for him to settle into a routine of making maps that fit with the ones I've already made, but he's got some good ideas and I'm sure he'll learn quickly.

Secondly, our hunt for a new AI coder is progressing well. We've had a lot of people apply, generally of a good standard, and we've narrowed the search down to a couple of people. We're currently just musing on who represents the best combination of value and expertise. It's just a shame some of these people didn't apply last time we were looking for an AI coder really. Hopefully we'll have a decision on who we're going with in the next few days.

Onto development itself. We've implemented a bunch of new features in the game - the soldier medal system, the bleeding wounds system, collapsible buildings, customisable soldier advancement values, delays before equipment arrives etc. There'll be more details on this in the other post. We've not made as much progress as we were hoping on this front due to not having the SVN available last week, but we're doing OK.

The rendering is progressing well. I'm currently rendering the last non-combat shield weapon for the normal Xenonaut armours. After this I need to render out the combat shield with the various associated weapons and then render out the weapons for the power armour (there's a lot less of those). Hopefully for the build after next, all the rendering for all the Xenonaut armour types and all the civilians and perhaps even all the vehicles will be done. This in itself will be a big step towards beta.

The tile work is continuing to progress. We've nearly finished the 3D buildings for the Middle East tileset and have some of them done for the US Desert tileset too. In terms of 2D paintovers, we're working on the second dropship at the moment and once that is finished all the required dropship tiles for all three dropships will be in the game (this should only take another couple of days). Then we'll do the ground tiles for the Arctic and Soviet Town tilesets, which are the last two outdoor tilesets that need any ground tiles done on them. Naturally the buildings and props will appear much faster once our tile artist joins full time in a couple of months, but things are going at a reasonable rate at the moment anyway.

Mac / Linux ports will hopefully be available the build after next. Mac ports may be available for the next build, but we're not sure.

All in all, things are good. Provided everything works out with the AI coder we select, we're in a good place.

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It all sounds really great Chris, can't wait to play the next build. Great update :)

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Chris,

Good news on the tile maker, and also great that you have candidates to fill the AI position. Both of these seem to be critical to continuing progress on this project.

I hope they both work out well.

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Good stuff. Looking forward to the day we get to play with the new stuff.

I'm very much looking forward to collapsible buildings though, an unexpected but lovely feature that'll please the demolition loving part of me, and probably result in a squad armed soley with rocket launchers for a laugh :)

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The Mac port is currently being tested by a couple of people, whilst theres a few known issues, I think we should be able to release alongside the new windows build, and if not, it should only be a couple days after.

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Hurray, nice to hear the staff problem is looking up. It's even nicer to have the website back :D

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I posted this in the other double posted thread before I saw there was 2 of them but I'm guessing that one is going to get deleted because this seems to be the main one so excuse the double post:

Just wondering, is there going to be a set number of pre-generated maps you can end up on or will you be randomly generating maps on the fly?

Even if you do make a LOT of maps manually to get variety, it can't compete with a good random generation system since it will take less space and have much more variety, of course this assumes the generation code is good too otherwise you end up with really strange levels that suck.

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Keep up the good work it seems like this game is swiftly overtaking my other games. Looking forward to the new build!

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Its already the game that i play more. Excellent work :)

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