NovaMundi – Week 88 update

Reminders! NovaMundi is coming to Steam Early 2021, remember to Wishlist it if you like what you see. We also have a Mailing list now, so make sure to subscribe to it as well, if you want news to reach your email directly. Now, let’s go to the news! 🙂

We are doing tests for a new style of the character portraits, with our first concern being the proportions of the characters and the shading and line style. It’s been a lot of debate inside the dev team as we have been seeing the old ones for too long, so we may be biased for the novelty. But I believe we are heading in the right direction. We are going to be introducing more variety on skin colors and anatomy the upcoming weeks.

Some big work in the camping facet as we introduced two new flows. The first one is the “Setup Encampment” flow, for the player to decide what elements his camp will have (as setting up tents and fireplaces takes some time). This is coupled with two additional changes, the removal of the “Camp” command so you’ll always have to set one up or camp on an existing one if you want to rest well, and the re-introduction of “fainting” so your party will crash at 1AM if you don’t camp adequately, meaning they won’t recover their energies for next day.

The second flow is the “Camp activities”, that is, things your party can do while on the camp and before going to sleep. These will include cooking, adding map sketches into the definitive map, drawing illustrations for discoveries, playing and chatting with other expedition members, healing other members, etc. You cannot do any of these if you don’t camp properly. (All these things are pending being implemented of course)

The “Barter” window got a long-needed update/redesign, now using the new window assets and with it’s entire layout remade. Functionally it remains the same. Note that we are still using the previous portrait style here.

The cave fragments were also updated to make them feel more “rugged” as well as being populated with crystals, mushrooms, stalactites and stalagmites. We also tweaked the range of the point lights to make sure lighting was fine and didn’t conflict between fragments.

We also tweaked the walk animation for units to both sync them when there are multiple models in a unit (for example the mounted units), as well as changing the playback speed to match the movement speed, and using blend trees for smoother transitions.

Some other misc changes included:

  • Duplicating the length of the day, so you have more play time before going to camp.
  • Allowing resting while sailing, which is a slightly different flow than camping in land
  • Update unit displayed in the overworld when expedition members die because of starvation or exploration events.

That’s it for Week 88, see you next week!

NovaMundi – Week 87 update

Another week of awesome progress. Remember to wishlist the game on Steam, if you haven’t done it already!

Pack Mules (new model) and unmounted horses are now shown as part of the Expedition in the overworld and follow you around.

More work in hunting, click on deer to transition to a hunting scene. This came along with the addition of two new Units: Archer and Hunter. Both have ranged bow attacks, but the Hunter specializes in stealthy taking down prey, while the archer is more of a military unit (weaker attack than arquebusiers, but longer range and more sturdy). The hunting game will be elaborated in next weeks.

Connecting with the previous work in “zoomed locations”, we are working on adding caves you can explore. We put a system in place to assemble them from different pre-made fragments, and worked on the visual aspect they will have (it’s still WIP)

We are in the process of updating the entire UI to make it a bit simpler, cooler, and with a unified style. We experimented with this in the layout for the “Event” popup. We are also working on extending the in-game events and added simple “Shared story” events increasing friendship between expedition members. We are adding more of these kinds of events, as well as simulating the lifetime of the expedition members since your relationship with them will be a big part of the expedition experience, as you embark on a journey to discover the secrets they treasure deep inside their hearts.

The player character is also now “Anonymous”; its portrait is no longer displayed in conversations nor barter, and you can no longer enter their name, so it’s up to you what to make of it (Maybe it’s you? It can be anything you want!). Related to this, characters you are speaking to now look into the screen (again). Also, completing quests now prompts conversations in hometown.

Some other relevant stuff:

  • Gold veins are disabled as the “mining” facet is being phased out of the initial scenarios.
  • You can now sacrifice livestock for raw meat if you want.
  • You can now return to the Tqnda hometown to restock or complete missions (for the Tqnda sponsor scenarios).

That’s it for Week 87, see you next week!

NovaMundi – Week 86 Update

We created new models for horses and are in the process of integrating them, for now we have done a basic integration with the explorer unit, but we are planning to integrate the variations in color as well as the animation of “mounting” the horse (right now it just changes immediately), as well as having a smarter way to display the different units as mounted when they change movement mode (and also having them drag the horses when not mounting them).

Supplies are now organized in lots with “expiry days”, and get closer to expiring every day. This also affects the supplies consumption and forecast, to use the lots closer to expiring in order to maximize the available inventory.

We are also now displaying a tool-tip with info about the items when hovering them in the inventory or the many other places where items show up. The “camp” window was also simplified and the option to rename them was removed since they are meant to be temporary things (the Emerald Jungle doesn’t welcome you as a settler).

Talking about items, you can now apply bandages and healing items to the different units; their effect is not immediate, instead they boost the normal recovery process that happens especially when units are resting (so you can wrap a bandage around a wounded unit and go to sleep, and he’ll be much better next day).

More work in the “Zoomed Exploration”, actually linking it to the overworld objects, as well as finishing a first phase of the “Capture Evil Person” type of mission, you can now complete it by finding the hideout and engaging in battle with the hostile party.

Finally, I also did some work in the Tqnda scenarios to actually allow getting supplies for the expedition, using Emeralds instead of Gold.

NovaMundi – Week 85 Update

On the “wildlife” front, we added deer into the world. They pop up, move around, idle and graze, and then fade out. We are working in the interactions with them (first one will be being able to hunt them). We also added more variety of parrots (red and green).

Responding to feedback from tired explorers, the European encampments are now equipped with bigger, more comfortable tents for the members of the expedition.

We are gradually adding procedural lakes into the world; we are now creating the surface of the lake and placing small ones (which look more like pools) in the world. I toyed around with the idea of simulating rainfall to define their shape and placement but quickly found out it won’t work for us unless we implement an erosion model. Instead, I’m going with the idea of merging heightmaps so we have better control of their placement and appearance.

We are now using particle effects for rainy weather so that the field of view reduction makes more sense to the player. Still need some tweaks to differentiate them from the normal “mist” caused by cold weather in high altitudes.

A big chunk of work was put on the “zoomed” exploration, you can now walk around our test temple ruins, grab stuff and return to the overworld. We are going to add more of these locations (mainly caverns), where you will be able to find remnants from other expeditions.

We are adding usable items including medicine, bandages, and medicinal plants (which you can now find and pick from the world). Next version we are going to implement their effects on the party members.

The Discovery Journal is now filled with entries based on the events that happen on the expedition in addition to the discoveries that are made. It still needs some improvements for a more fluid layout but it’s a good step forward.

Finally, the Tqnda campaigns now start on their own hometown, where the player can setup their expedition. It still needs a proper artwork (as well as the journey to the Emerald Jungle).

That’s it for Week 85! Please remember to follow us on Steam, and add the game to your wish list if you like it.