It’s Cambo again! Since the last update we have been continuing our focus on engine tech planning and settling into our new office. We were hoping to release a patch in September, but that quickly changed as we got settled into our new office. Let’s just say our devs are not fans of assembling furniture.
What else did we get done in September?
There are more improvements and tweaks, but we’ll save that full list for the patch notes. We’re looking forward to seeing your feedback once you see these changes live!
The NK family is growing and our newest member is Benjamin. Welcome to the team @5ubtlety!
– Cambo out!
Hey guys, it’s John (@x_nekochu_x) and I have some game design news!
Today we’re going to take a look at some of the new tables and items that can be crafted. As the game progresses, the seed will need new workstations to advance his crafts and make better stuff. With this in mind we have created two new workstations for the seed to build, the artisan workbench and the loom.
The artisan workbench is a multi-purpose station that allows the seed to work with leather, jewelry and advanced methods of assembly. It is one of our first table upgrades. This means that by adding an upgrade to an existing table, you can add more crafting options to that table. By upgrading the crude workbench, the seed will still be able to craft all of the previous recipes, and it will also open up new recipes specific to the upgraded workbench.
The second new workstation is the loom. The loom is the seed’s first foray into making clothes that are more than just bamboo shafts and leaves! With the loom, the seed can begin to weave textiles from other materials to create patches that can be used in making clothes and other linen products. We are almost done with the concept and you should see the design next week!
These two new workstations also work together as several of the new crafts are created at one and then assembled at the other. For example, linen textiles can be created at the loom and then used in assembling an outfit at the artisan workbench with some leather accents. Likewise leather patches may be refined at the artisan workbench and then weaved into a pattern with other fabrics at the loom.
So let’s take a look at some of the new resources and crafted items we can expect to see with these new tables.
Leather patches and linen textiles. These crucial components are for a lot of new crafts and will be used in clothes, armor pieces and in the future, crafting a saddle for mounts.
Bronze buckles and plates. These items are crafted using the casting method that we have had at the stone furnace but with the new artisan workbench, they can be assembled with other resources to create new elements.
We are also working on a new set of clothes for the teen seed, complete with a new shirt, breeches, tunic and shoulder pads. @TheCamboRambo will share the 3D models soon as we have them done.
There are so many new recipes to discover and new gameplay systems coming soon! Our mount system is planned but will not be ready for our next update. We’ll talk more about mounts and how to use your new tack items in a future blog post. Until then, happy crafting!
Check out our latest “In The Works” video on body morphing.
Good News, Everyone!
A day late, but better late than never right? The Bronze Age is now upon us but what about magic? We are excited to bring the first phase of magic with the introduction of alchemy in the world of TUG. Sacrifice your energy for the love of magic and bring forth some new surprises…didn’t you like our last one?
The Awesome News/Update:
The early stages of alchemy is in the works and introducing a few new recipes to help you survive or…be eaten. You may see some new crystals spawning around in your world once we have it out.
What more to say here? Just don’t get eaten alive! Be sure to check the in the works video tomorrow for more details.
Craft the alchemy table or fully utilize the magic tree stumps to convert even more items at the cost of your energy.
Multiplayer [High priority]
A lot of progress have been made on the new network code. Unfortunately, still no confirmation date yet until we make a bit more progress and can provide a better estimate.
Terrain Generation v2 [High priority]
Progress have been made and we finally have some voxel manipulation and placement working. It still requires a lot more optimization. We have some work to do to get the caves in and also recreating existing biomes.
In The Works:
Here are the latest work in progress videos if you missed it.
Bronze Age Weapons
Terrain Gen v2 Sneak Peek from Azzy
Shoot us an email at [email protected] if you still haven’t claimed your TUG early access key on Steam. They have been sent out since April :-p
To follow our development go to our 2014 Dev Board on Trello
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If you think we have not done a TERRIBLE job so far, please share our project and news with your friends. As usual, every penny earned in Alpha and Beta goes right back into development.
I’m John, aka Nekochu, the lead designer for TUG, and this is the first in a series of developer blogs we’ll be sharing with you guys! We hope these updates will be interesting and insightful to both you TUG veterans who have been with us for awhile, as well as newcomers to our community. This blog will cover our progress on various game systems, talk about how we approach design and development, and discuss some of our planned future endeavors with the world of TUG!
I feel like I should be calling all the readers a clever name… like true believers, the devoted, or maybe Nerdlings? Anyway, tweet me @X_Nekochu_X and we’ll try to come up with a good title for everyone who is on board!
So today, I wanted to talk about our crafting system. We just got successfully Greenlit on Steam, and early access to the TUG Survival Games is now open for purchase. It is in the Survival Games that TUG’s developing crafting system is currently featured.
Crafting in TUG is vital to your survival. You start in an open world as a Seedling with absolutely nothing. By searching around and trying out some things, you’ll quickly realize that some objects are scavengable and can provide basic resources. Laying these scavenged resources out on the ground and testing various combinations will yield the first set of basic tools. By using these tools, you can find and harvest new resources and try new crafting combinations to discover crude weapons that can be used to battle other Seedlings.
When designing TUG’s crafting system, we began by looking at its predecessors to try to find what works and what doesn’t work. Most systems tend to have a grid with patterns, and trees leading down branches of craftable recipes. In the early design phases, we used this as a starting point for thinking about TUG’s crafting system.
In this early mock up, we were trying to lay out some of our more difficult design concepts, like having a one-to-one size ratio for items in the backpack and on the crafting space. Through these early iterations, we quickly found the limitations of this grid-based table and inventory system–namely, how much of a disconnect this heavy UI created for the player’s experience. However, using this as a starting point helped us identify the space requirements for future iterations on elements such as tables, crafting stations, and inventory.
We never wanted to have a full UI system for the crafting process. From the beginning, we have always wanted to keep it very natural and intuitive for the player. Early crafting should capture the feel of a scavenger or early explorer gathering items and sorting them in a natural workspace for assembly. So for crafting crude tools, we decided to create something that would seem like a natural workbench. Our first version of the crafting system in-game used a special tree stump and flat rock object that served as crafting stations for players.
These objects served two purposes: a nice flat surface to lay out your resources, and a tactical position for players hoping to strike other unsuspecting players trying to craft. It was an interesting take on the heightened danger of making a choice to craft or to hide, but we found that by adding this extra layer into the steps, we slowed down the pace of the survival game experience.
At this stage of iteration, we also found some issues with item generation and scavenged resources. Our original idea was to have the scavenged resources be a true one-to-one generation, which meant if you needed a particular stone as part of a crude tool recipe, you would find it lying on the ground. As you can imagine, those resources were quite small, and we encountered a collision issue where some resources never generated at all in the environment due to their size. This led us to instead create parent models for many scavenged resources.
We still needed to make it seem as if the player could scavenge a resource with nothing but their hands, but we wanted the parents for the resources to be a bit larger and easier to spot than the resources they yielded. Thus items like wood sticks come from a tree sapling, while stones come from a small yet more visually readable terrain rock.
We still had the issue of the pacing of the game, so our next iteration was the removal of the crafting stations and a return to the roots of the crafting experience: laying resources anywhere and crafting on the ground. However, in returning to this method of crafting, the bug of smaller resources disappearing during generation reappeared. The issue was that the collision for smaller objects sometimes caused resources to slip under the terrain and become lost–quite a frustrating problem for players in an environment with already scarce resources and full of would-be hunters! Luckily, thanks to some ingenuity from our coders, we were able to enforce some stricter physics rules and mitigate this issue.
This leads us to our current version of crafting in TUG. Once you gather the right resources, you can lay them out anywhere on the ground and start crafting the tools or weapons you need to survive! As for the future of the crafting system, we hope to soon tackle our inventory system and bring it inline with the same advances we have made to the crafting system. We want to capture the feeling of spreading out your items on the ground, or at least offer a more intuitive way of sorting through your stuff while still keeping to the logic of one-to-one size relationships.
Stay tuned for more updates and dev blogs from the team!