ExpeditionZ – Tech Demo Update 2

We have been working on the tech demo for about a month now.

Screen Shot 2018-12-02 at 10.36.28 PM

Some of the things we did since the last update:

  • Added (and then broke) a minimap system where the game world gets unveiled as you explore.
  • Add a “journal”-like thing to the HUD, displaying the date, location, supplies, mood, and weather info.
  • Add a day/night cycle, time goes by and is reflected on the lighting conditions of the main map.
  • Moved away from the fantasy land and into Earth
  • Added “rain” particle effect for when it rains.
  • Decided to go 3D for the main map view instead of the antique map aesthetic. Invested quite a bit of time on making the water look fine.
  • Added instance-able test towns including test town view.
  • Added temp title screen.
  • Acquired and imported Earth’s terrain elevation data (mainly from 2000’s NASA’s Shuttle Radar Topography Mission), for a sector including the Caribbean, Central America, and part of South America.

Along with these developments, I’ve been working on finishing the GDD and the plans for the completed Tech Demo. We are focusing on finishing a test scenario, and soon we are going to have more involvement from a cool 2D artist to bring the UI to life. The title screen painting is also being worked on now.

ExpeditionZ – Tech Demo Update 1

We have been working on a new version of Expedition for a couple weeks now.

Exploring the test map

After some initial brainstorming sessions, we set to create a game based on the original Expedition, but streamlined and more focused.

What we have so far is a ship sailing in a test fantasy world, you can also land, walk around, and board back your ship.

Along the way, we also experimented with some simple Line of Sight / Fog of War thing, but ended up ditching it in favor of an automap currently in the works.

Some simple fog of darkness

Stay tuned for more info!

Expedition: Mass Units test

I decided to perform another test of Phaser running on a 800×600 Canvas, multiple units on screen each one moving randomly. It seems to work fine with around 500 units which should be fine.

Mass Units Test

100 Units – 60 FPS

100

500 Units – 40 FPS

500

1000 – 30 FPS

1000

2000 Units – 15 FPS

2000

5000 Units – 7 FPS

5000

 

Expedition – Real time test

expeditionX

Wanted to get this off my head.

Made on phaser, seems to work fine but not sure how it would work for long voyages on the Atlantic, would have to test with big maps.

Basically you can rotate your ship and the speed depends on the difference between the wind direction and your heading (needs some tweaks so that it’s not linear)

Also, wondered how the art would work on this top down view. Worked a second version using the current 8 directions pixel art and ocean animation (that one needs a bit of work but is much more at my grasp)

ExpeditionRealTime-PixelArt

 

Voyage – Better forests and rivers, darker land

Toned down the palette a bit on the ocean and grass tiles.

Also added forest and “plains” variations, replacing the fixed tropical palm trees and brown patches of land, also put some trees in front of them mountains to make them blend a bit better.

Started working on the rivers, gotta do some big changes on the model to pick the tiles based on the world model instead of the player’s perception (since the field of view can greatly affect it). That is, there may be a river tile you are not seeing to the east of the one you are seeing, the game should be able to pick a river fragment expansing eastwards, but right now it relies on perception data so it cannot know.

Another things to work in related to rivers:

  • Linking together patches of river so they flow continuously
  • Adding support for lagoons which will be a mix between the beaches and river models.
  • Differentiating shallow ocean water to rivers.

As I feared, I’m ending up investing more time on the Java version of Expedition/Voyage than I anticipated, I just cannot release something half-baked… I’m even considering completing a bigger scope for it and releasing it as Expedition… my mind just keeps spinning and spinning.

Voyage: Full Screen mode in Java, extended FOV

Was able to get full screen working using the good old Full Screen Exclusive Mode API, at first tried to accommodate the game to 640×480 but found out the dialogs for buying on stores and transferring equipment wouldn’t work in this resolution unless I invested some heavy work on them.

So in the end rolled back the work I had done for both compacting the UI and scaling the graphics layer manually… now using the original 1024×768 design for the DenziUI, with a small but important twist…

Running full screen at 1024×768 with extended FOV

I duplicated the depth of the field of view, which I think makes the game look much better in my opinion!

Some upcoming interesting things (besides the already mentioned “macro” goals in the previous post):

  • Enhance forests and mountains by using different graphics variations
  • Pick forest/jungle type based on latitude