Archive for Updates

Heavy Molecular Science!

Hey everybody!

Mark here again to take you through the ins and outs of the new vehicle in production, the Plasmid’s bigger sister, the Genome.

OCTOPI Genome (WIP) - 01
When designing heavy vehicles I have to be conscious of how big they can to be, as we have found that when a vehicle gets over a certain size it gets caught on the corners of buildings and can have other difficulties navigating the city. So when modelling larger vehicles I adjust the design so it keeps the scale and grandeur of the original concept, even if they’re not as large and impressive as they otherwise might have been.

OCTOPI Genome (WIP) - 02
One particular modelling challenge was getting the curve and indentation right while keeping the main body of the vehicle flowing, smooth, and organic. Keeping to the structural aesthetic of the faction, the engine intakes have a hexagonal shape resembling molecular skeletal formulas and the double helix engines were taken from the Plasmid for consistency.

OCTOPI Genome (WIP) - 03
We hope that you enjoyed this look at Octopi’s new heavy vehicle and we’ll see you next time. Thanks for reading! -Mark

Smart Design

Hey everyone!

We’re back with some more vehicular works in progress. Instead of telling you about this vehicle in particular, I’m going to take you through some of the thoughts behind its design.

OCTOPI Plasmid (WIP) - 01
Octopi’s faction vehicle designs went through a number of iterations, from paying homage to the Jetsons to an art-deco approach with a retro-futuristic vibe. However the initial designs felt too separate from the vehicles already created in game, so instead design cues were taken from the Cursi NPC vehicle. Its softer edges and shape give it a more luxurious and advanced look compared to standard factionless vehicles, suiting Octopi’s interest in advanced technology.

OCTOPI Plasmid (WIP) - 02
The final aesthetic for Octopi’s vehicles draws upon the faction’s primary business ideal, genetic manipulation. Their vehicles somewhat resemble single cell organisms, utilising hexagonal patterns and shapes as seen in skeletal formulas of molecules and a double helix DNA-like structure for the rear propulsion.

OCTOPI Plasmid (WIP) - 03
We’ll be back with the finished textured shots next time. For now, thanks for reading! –Mark


Watch Out For The Watchers

Hey everyone!

Sometimes subtle monitoring is the most effective choice for keeping society in check. NOR believes that sometimes more overt means are preferable. Enter the Executor.

NOR Executor - 01
When you need to keep an eye on a whole city and don’t care who knows it, because most of them already do, it’s very useful to have a lot of cameras everywhere. It’s even more useful to have cameras that can deal with threats and problems as they arise.

NOR Executor - 02
NOR’s eyes are everywhere, and if they settle on you and they don’t like what they see you may be in some trouble. So if you choose to oppose NOR you should keep your own eyes peeled for the Executor.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading! –David

From Trash To Terror

Hey everyone!

LEST don’t have the greatest technology available to them. They do however have tools, bits and pieces of things, and plenty of ingenuity and from that they have made the Vagabond.

LEST Vagabond - 01
The Vagabond may not be comfortable (or smell very nice) but it is quite functional. Made from a conveniently reinforced metallic waste disposal container, a couple of reclaimed jet turbines, and some really hot barrels, it’s become essentially a floating bunker for the LEST pilots within.

LEST Vagabond - 02
It’s amazing what you can do with the junk you find lying around when you have an urge to blow stuff up and take down what could very well be a tyrannical covert brainwashing organization.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading! –David

Keeping Things Under Control

Hey everyone!

NOR is a large and complex organization, and as such they thrive on order and harmony. They function as a well-oiled machine and everyone works towards a common goal. Sometimes, however, NOR employees and certain outspoken and troublesome individuals threaten the efficient operation of that machine.

NOR Subjugator - 01
Enter the Subjugator, NOR’s way of dealing with those who would cause chaos or spread slander. Loyal and commendable NOR employees use Subjugators to transport these problematic people and help readjust them to better integrate with society.

NOR Subjugator - 02
Some people may not agree with NOR’s methods, and as such Subjugator’s are also equipped to defend themselves and their passengers bound for reeducation. Never let it be said that NOR isn’t willing to help people better themselves.

That’s all for now. As always, thanks for reading! –David

The Bouncer Will Mess You Up

Hey everyone!

Most factions of New Bedlam have access to advanced technology and/or other sophisticated means for developing their vehicles. LEST, however, don’t have such means at their disposal. But as the saying goes, necessity is the mother of invention.

LEST Bouncer - 01
The Bouncer, is part plane, part caboose, and all recycled components from whatever was lying around. LEST essentially used whatever parts they could find to make an unlikely behemoth.

LEST Bouncer - 02
It may seem like a mess at first glance, and realistically it is, but the Bouncer is still a force to be reckoned with in the streets of New Bedlam.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading! –David

Want Fries With That?

Hey everyone!

Today we’re taking a look at the second biggest NPC vehicle we’ve made so far, the biggest being the Juggernaut. It’s JRC’s heavy vehicle that we like to call the Giant Combo.

JRC-Giant Combo Beauty 01
The Giant Combo contains 4 drumsticks, 2 wings, and a whole lot of muscle. These enormous trucks haul JRC’s various supplies around the city, everything from machinery to live chickens. They also have a lot of armoured surface area on which to mount substantial defensive equipment.

JRC-Giant Combo Beauty 02
Given their similar size and navigational limitations, the Giant Combo will most likely be found driving on the same street layer as the Juggernaut. Without a layer to themselves these big vehicles would pose a real problem for traffic.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading! –David

A Little R&D

Hey everyone!

As mentioned last time, we’ve got a few new weapons in development. At the moment they’re unnamed, untested, and unbalanced but we do have a general idea of how they’ll work.

The first is a heavy weapon with an indirect firing method. This weapon will let you target an enemy and bring down a laser blast from an orbital cannon, though it will probably take some testing to decide what the best targeting system is (lock-on, laser guidance, or something else). This weapon in particular is a faction weapon given to the player if they do enough work for NOR.

Next we have a defensive weapon that releases a temporary but lingering cloud of acid behind you to slowly damage pursuers. It can also be set like a trap because drivers in a grimy city like New Bedlam are unlikely to be smart enough to avoid a green cloud before it’s too late.

The third weapon we have is for when things get a little too cluttered and you just need some space. This set of speakers has been weaponized to emit a force that pushes things back. Useful in a tactical situation or just for annoying other drivers, which is also fun.

We’ll come back to these again at some point once they’re working and polished, maybe with some action shots to show them off. For now though, thanks for reading. –David

At The Moment

Hey everyone!

Let’s take a look at what’s being done in development right now to help give everyone a better idea of where we’re at.

The big gates between districts have been static for long enough, so we’re working out triggers to have them open up as the game progresses and new areas are unlocked. Annoyingly, while a simple enough concept to implement, I seem to have broken something whilst making it functional so I’m figuring that out now.

The new district is a little more complex than the existing ones in terms of street layout and vertical obstacles. As such we have to plan the AI’s pathfinding road map a little differently and a bit more carefully in order to limit NPC vehicles getting stuck. This should work out fine, though we’ll only find the exceptions through constant testing.

The faction vehicles are coming along nicely, as we’ve been showing off for a while now. Once we’ve got a few for each faction we can start adding them to the pool of other vehicles.

We’ve also got a few new weapons in development, which are coming along nicely. We’re trying to add some variety with these ones but we’ll go into more detail about them another time once we’ve tested them and got a feel for their effectiveness.

I’m also still working on more performance-friendly and simplified NPC vehicle behaviour. I want to get it to the point where it’s not taking up about a third of the memory usage of the entire game.

So that’s a snapshot of what’s going on right now. Hope it was both insightful and interesting. Thanks for reading! –David

El Grande Ingredients

Hey everyone!

Welcome fans and people who were looking up Mexican food! Last year we showed you a near-complete version of Big Larry’s heavy vehicle, the El Grande, and now we’ll take a look at the final product as well as some of the technical stuff that makes it look so nice and shiny.

BL- El-Grande Beauty 01

BL- El-Grande Beauty 02
We’ve talked before about what the El Grande can do. It spits out more weaponized burritos than a Taco Bill’s on a Friday night. The big difference being that you don’t have to eat these burritos to make them explosive.

BL- El-Grande Beauty 03
This week I’m going to show you some behind the scenes of the final texture maps used to make the El Grande look the way it does now.

El Grnade Texture maps
For the NPC vehicles in game we have a universal material applied to all of them, so whilst they may be different colours, shapes and sizes, they all fit together in our big rogues gallery. We have our diffuse maps which are used for colour and small details like dirt and wear. The normal maps add extra surface definition, but using the engine’s lighting to imitate various plating, bolts and vents. Lastly is our special RGB map that utilizes the map’s colour channels to do all sorts of material effects without resorting to more individual texture maps.

El Grnade Texture maps+
Each of the four channels affect different properties of the material: green for specularity, blue for glossiness, the alpha influences what glows and lastly the red shows what parts can colour within the game engine. Whilst the red channels effects aren’t as noticeable with our faction branded vehicles, it offers us an easier way to provide a variety of different versions of our regular vehicles.

And that was your little peek behind the curtain. We’ll be back next fortnight to show you more of what’s being developed. – Mark

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