Devblog 46 – Weekly update

Terrain shader

DOMEN KONESKI

I have managed to create a color variety on the terrain itself by writing a custom terrain shader. This terrain shader enables us to input three different colors – one for the lowest points of the island, second one is meant for middle/ground heights and the last one is meant for hills and mountain tops. To interpolate colors smoothly I have transformed the colors from RGB to HSL space and used this code bit for interpolation (_Middle is a float [0, 1] that sets the “middle ground” height):

terrain shader colors lowpoly floatlands
Terrain shading with 3 different colors

Procedural grass level of detail

DOMEN KONESKI

The world outlook from farther distance perhaps felt boring and dull. Some games just increase the fog level in order to hide this dullness. There was zero detail in the distance so I started increasing draw distance for trees and rocks. I have created a new simple mesh (actually a rectangle with two triangles) and populated it with a simple grass cutout texture. I proceeded with creating procedural LODs, placing both simple mesh and complex in one spot, baking the same ones together in patches and adding Unity’s LODGroup on top of that. The distance is busy now, therefore enabling us to decrease the fog level. LOD levels (for world objects) and other settings (such as shadows) are going to be tweakable via config file.

terrain shader grass lod lowpoly floatlands
Busier look in the distance – more grass at the back, but with less detail.

Drone

DOMEN KONESKI

Me and Andrej added a new kind of non-hostile NPCs to the world that actually have no purpose as regards to gameplay – they will only make skies more busy and immersive. They are called Prospecting drones and they will fly around the island, stopping at the rocks and try to mine them with their laser. Yes, you can destroy and scrap them, but why would you do that to these beautiful robot creatures?

terrain shader drone lowpoly floatlands
Non-hostile Prospecting drone in action

Randomized human NPCs

ANDREJ KREBS

Since there will be a lot of NPCs that will populate various settlements, we decided to make a system that randomizes the characters by using shape keys (blend shapes / morph targets, whatever your software calls it…) on the face. This changes different facial features of the character and effectively makes each character have a unique face. Of course the character will also have a variety of different outfits.

I started out by making a model with about average features and then modeled the extremes for every feature, so the game can blend between individual shapes, Then I made a script that randomizes the features and chooses a random combination of an outfit, shoes, a hat and facial hair. I also made a brand new animation rig for the human NPCs that will support the variety of animations that I have already started making for them. At the beginning of the week I concluded the work on ‘techies’ buildings by finishing up the shop model.

terrain shader farmers NPCs lowpoly floatlands
Randomized human characters
terrain shader shop techies model floatlands
Techies shop

Adding lamps

VILI VOLČINI

Every device that we have in our electricity starter pack needs proper implementation. Previously I worked on repair and charging stations, but this week I focused on bringing functionality to light lamps, actually two types of those lamps – wall lamp & standing lamp. As a result here is a quick preview in the picture below:

terrain shader light lamps lowpoly floatlands
A wall light lamp & a standing light lamp.

We have improved the indicators, so those basic electric components are considered done for now. In this example I filled up the generator with fat, and it started to generate electricity. Very easy!

terrain shader adding fuel lowpoly floatlands
Filling up the generator.

Icons for electric devices

MITO HORVAT

We are slowly finishing up the electricity which will be an exciting new addition to enhance the gameplay. In addition, the newly added electric devices will need icons to display them in the players HUD. Below you can see a set of new icons, including bolts which will have a special use in the game.

terrain shader icons electricity lowpoly floatlands
Icons for electric devices, wheat and corn.

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