Dev Blog #162 - A New Dawn


Concerns have been raised by the community if we've been replaced by robots. Not without reason if you look at all the stuff we managed to do this week!

Community

There will be a new patch coming out today bringing great changes. It will fix the glitching of the animations as well as triple the overall performance of the game! Yes, Johannes has been busy doing some black magic this week to achieve this miracle!

A heads up: The price for Crest will be raised next week to $14.89. This will be the third and final price raise. If you haven't yet, now is a perfect opportunity to get the game cheap because we don't plan to do any major discounts until the end of the year.

Art

Martin
What a fun week! I've started working on the[censored] for the incoming [censored], mainly doing the [censored].

The late Carl Sagan once said that "If you wish to make apple pie from scratch, you must first create the Universe" and that's what I have to do to make this [censored]. You see, it's about the creation of everything. So first I have to come up with how the universe was created before I can make the [censored], luckily I've studied a little bit of astronomy before so I can put that knowledge to good use. More information coming next week!

[Editor's note: Sorry, spoilers! :D]

Emma
This week, I spent half of the week at home sick and the other half doing UI work and playtests. For example, this week we realized that the way we had planned the new word discovery UI wouldn't actually work as intended! This was simply because it turned out too messy when all the words were included with their connections.

At times like these, you simply go back to the mock-up phase and take these factors into consideration. After some design changes on Emelie's part, I could start over from the beginning and come up with a whole new look for the UI; which you can see below.

Code

Jens
This week I've been continuing work on the Word Discovery. I started to implement a UI for the Word Tree but after a while it started to reveal an underlying flaw in the feature. In the first iteration (seen in the picture below), we wanted the words clustered in a tree with certain words blocking others. This blocking relation was displayed through lines drawn between the words in the Word Discovery screen. The biggest flaws were both an imbalance between the word categories, making the tree look slanted, as well as the blocking lines becoming confusing with a lot of lines crossing each other making it hard to read.

We went back to the drawing board and came up with much cleaner and more understandable design. Words will be added to different tiers. Tiers are unlocked by discovering a set amount of words from lower tiers. Thankfully it wasn't a huge amount of code refactoring even though it looked like a big change at first and it is well on its way to being finished.

Johannes W
This week I finished the new mountain clouds, created design tools for balancing the water system and added functionality to different GUI's, for example the new world overview window that will be in the game.

I also started with changing how food resources are handled in the game. Before, the total food in a city was based on the total food that every follower carried. Now, the food will be fully stored and handled by the city. Every follower will still carry food but the big difference is that they gain food only when they visit their home hut.

Johannes  
This has been quite a productive week. I finished the new decorator which made quite a huge performance improvement over the old one. I was quite surprised myself.

I also managed squeeze in a new feature in the water system so that new rivers can be formed, to make the environment more dynamic and changeable over time.

Tomas
I have continued my work on the commandment definition mechanics, what commandments actually make followers do. I have also worked on minor changed in the UI. There is an issue with the version of Unity we are using at the moment which has made this work harder than it should be. Hopefully the Unity devs will patch it soon because these tasks cannot be completed until it is.

One of the UI changes is the implementation of the new City Needs tab in the City Popup. There are now separate bars that show each of the six needs instead of the old radar chart. Hopefully it will ease the understanding of city and follower needs.

Design

Emelie
This week has been a real hell with Unity for me, it's been "arguing" with me and things were not working as intended... Anyway, I have been updating how each individual commandment combination affect the needs, this decides how a city with a doctrine will react to those commandments. For instance, "produce farms" will have a huge effect on the need "food" and maybe not so much on the other needs which means that if the doctrine likes food then they will like the commandment.

This took the majority of the week because there are quite a few combinations. Even though Unity has been making my life miserable, I have managed to playtest a few things that needed balancing this week, such as the new word discovery tech tree.

Production

Marcus
Lots of company stuff this week as Eat Create Sleep is going to San Francisco and GDC this March! Well, parts of us anyway, so I have begun working on our gameplan for that little excursion.

I have also been involved in giving feedback to the new word discovery system that we have been hard at work with these past few weeks. Beyond that, we are still hard at work with getting our intended features into the game, without breaking everything, so look forward to future patches that will fix many of Crests current problems.

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If you want to follow the development of our game and get the latest news, you can find us on Facebook or Twitter, support the game on Steam, or chat with us on Discord.

Have a nice weekend!





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