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    [GAME] Frontier

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    I wanted to share a project I've been working on for the last couple of weeks and basically open up a devblog. The name is currently a working title, as I just thought of that now. It is a top-down survival game, which I have a ton of ideas for, however for now I have been making significant progress on the base mechanics of the game.

    The game will eventually have a much larger map than the current one in the image above. I want to build a dungeon (or dungeons) into the map, which generate procedurally each time you enter, you can then get things from this dungeon which you can use to upgrade your town, or rescue people from the dungeon who will join your town and run shops etc. This is all further down the line however as I want to get all of the above world stuff working first.

    For now I have working:

    Main Character with a placeholder skeletal mesh
    Inventory and Containers system
    Building Crafting
    AI enemies
    Basic combat

    I should also mention I am working by myself on this and not using any marketplace content, everything is built from scratch. There are bugs, which you will be able to see in the video. It is also 100% blueprints. I am opening this thread to keep track of my progress. The video below is the first couple of days progress video. However once i submit this post I will add a reply with the current progress and associated devblog.
    Last edited by Orkney; 03-05-2019, 05:57 PM.
    My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


    It had been a long time since I updated, since the previous video I had mainly been doing changes under the hood in order to make things work better down the line. I have added a lot of functionality to the inventory, fixed some bugs and also added containers, these containers work like regular containers in games, however you can only add items to them right now (cant remove them yet). There is one bug where sometimes the item doesnt add to the container (or its UI) but still removes it from your inventory. Currently, if your try to drop a different resource type into a slot already containing a resource, it will go into the first empty slot. Also if you add to an existing stack, it will add to taht stack then start a new one.

    I have also added a basic AI system, which both of the current NPCs share, you can set AI to either be aggressive or passive. Passive NPCs will run away when attacked, aggressive enemies will stand and fight. I need to add a type which will attack on sight.

    I tweaked the water shader slightly to make it more transparent near shorelines.

    I changed the building system sockets so that you cant build a wall in a socket which already has a wall, door or window in. Then fixed all the issues this caused. Same with doors, you can only place one door in a doorway now.

    Basic Night/Day cycle

    Next steps:

    Make items retrievable from containers
    Fix Container bug
    Player Stats and equipment.
    Add roofs to houses
    Last edited by Orkney; 02-11-2018, 04:30 PM.
    My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


      Quick Update as I am still working:

      -Fixed Health Plant Not Disapearing from inventory
      -Stopped aggressive NPCs attacking when not in range
      -Added Roof's

      Roof will only place on a floor which has 3 walls surrounding, this needs tweaked as if you place two floors together the shared slot only counts towards the first floors number of walls, you can see this in the full video. When you go under a roof it sets the roofs opacity so you can see through the roof. I am undecided whether to have a nice spherical opacity mask around the player, or to set all adjoining roof blueprints to lower their opacity, this way you could see inside your whole base.

      Full Video:

      Last edited by Orkney; 02-15-2018, 04:10 PM.
      My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


        Click image for larger version  Name:	Screenshot2.jpg Views:	1 Size:	364.7 KB ID:	1430278


        - All roofs will now go invisible when player goes beneath any roof (they will maintain their shadow casting however) I personally prefer this method because it means you can see inside your whole base rather than just one section. The meshes also go completely invisible, I was lerping the mesh opacity to 0.1, however it did not look right I thought.

        Graphical Updates:
        - Changed Landscape material to use textures instead of flat colours, also made 3 different landscape textures (Grass, Sand, Mud)
        - Reworked structural Meshes and their materials (walls, windows, doorways, floors and roofs) so that they actually look half decent, they all share one material
        - Inventory UI has had a much needed graphical update (Graphics provided by my brother)
        - Added a new grass foliage type, however this needs tweaked as it causes lighting issues during the night

        - Added a music track from my musically talented friend, only one for now, I would like to eventually have music which reacts to player actions.

        FULL VIDEO:

        (Day/Night cycle is sped up a lot for video)

        I really need to start thinking about the player character model!

        Comments and Critiques would be very welcome, even criticism!
        Last edited by Orkney; 02-17-2018, 04:36 PM.
        My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


          Quick update as Ive been busy the last couple of days but added some new foliage

          Click image for larger version

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          My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


            Like the stylized meshes.... did you considering gradually fading the roof when you walk into the house, instead of insta-dissappear?


              Originally posted by Aegix View Post
              Like the stylized meshes.... did you considering gradually fading the roof when you walk into the house, instead of insta-dissappear?
              Thankyou for the suggestion! I did originally have the roof set to fade to a value of 0.1 but I didnt like still kind of being able to see the roof, had another bash just now but made the roofs fade all the way out like this:

              There are some translucency sorting issues though which I will need to fix

              Also, Ive begun work on the hot bar, which you can see the beginnings of at the bottom of the screen. I have also reworked the NPCs so that making a combat system later on will be more streamlined. Cant really show this though without just posting a blueprint graph haha

              I might eventually make it so the walls disappear if they are between the player and the camera too, or maybe just the upper half disappears
              Last edited by Orkney; 02-22-2018, 03:21 PM.
              My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                This looks amazing, awesome work!


                  Thankyou hippowombat , Woodbound is also amazing, I have been following your development for months
                  My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                    Been a little while since update due to being busy with paid work...

                    Tonight I have been improving containers so that you can now actually take items back out of them! Cutting edge, innovative game design, I know, but just watch soon every game will be implementing this kind of mechanic.

                    You can see in the above gif how I can successfully transfer items back out of the container after walking around it twice in a circle

                    However. it still works if you don't walk around the container

                    (Adding this was a lot harder than I make it look in the gif)
                    Last edited by Orkney; 02-27-2018, 07:19 PM.
                    My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                      Heres an extended gameplay video:

                      Also chests now open and close, apologies for low quality gif

                      Last edited by Orkney; 02-27-2018, 07:15 PM.
                      My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                        That looks nicely done and refined :3 The attack gif above my comment tho is really clunky I would play this <3
                        EDIT: i subscribed to this so pls push more content out soon <3


                          Thanks Filly!

                          Hearing that someone would play this makes me feel good. The main character is not the final character and he only has 3 animations in total. I am trying to avoid doing extra animations, for now, as I want to swap the mesh for a different one and will not be using the same skeleton. However I am not sure what the new mesh will be yet so I'm kind of leaving it for now. Suggestions would be welcome actually!

                          I will try to keep pumping content out!
                          My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                            Heres a quick update:

                            Nothing art-wise is final, I am a 3D artist for work however I usually work in realistic rendering so this style is very new to me. Eventually I will devote time to art but for now I am enjoying making everything work. The UI works but I need to make buttons etc to match the art style (once i have nailed that down). Saying that, I did spend a little time tonight making the trees look nicer, screenshot

                            Click image for larger version  Name:	Screenshot5.jpg Views:	1 Size:	233.7 KB ID:	1436692

                            Though I will probably swap these out for a similar model but better and a load of variants eventually.

                            The build menu is not 100% finished yet in that I dont want the player to be able to craft doors, campfires, beds (this sort of thing, placeable items) from this menu. I will have a crafting bench/table where these can be made (it will use the same UI). Structures will eventually be placed using some sort of blueprint item.

                            Im going to go off on one here... a big inspiration for this game is a game called Dark Cloud for the Playstation 2 (Google it, it was an awesome game. I rented it from blockbuster for a weekend when I was about 12 years old, and thought I had completed it by the Monday when you had to return it. Turns out I had only passed the first zone of which there were about 7, I persuaded my mam (mom for americans) to buy the game for me, Blockbuster probably shut down like a week later (for English people)). In Dark Cloud you would go into a procedural dungeon and save characters and items (houses/barbells/benches) trapped inside these orbs. Then you could come out of the dungeon and build a village using these pieces. I want to eventually have the player retrieve an item (NPC, NPC's house or item) from the dungeon. This would then become a special structure the player could place in the world. Completely different to how you place walls and floors etc. You might get a bonus for placing this structure in a certain area (maybe a fisherman NPC might like his house placed next to the lake).

                            Obviously these things are going to take time to implement. And I am still trying to think of a storyline to link this all together

                            Next Steps:

                            - Make hotbar work < this is probably current priority, I know how I am going to do it, its just going to take ages, like retrieving storage items.

                            - Player Equipment/Stats - Not quite sure I will tackle this until I have a finished player character mesh

                            - Combat - I want to make a lock on combat system, so you can lock on, roll etc and block. Which Im pretty sure I can do. I studied character animation at university so I can animate, however I am not brilliant with animation graphs in Unreal, although I will learn. Also need player character first
                            Last edited by Orkney; 03-01-2018, 06:43 PM.
                            My Game Frontier Devblog HERE


                              Been pretty busy today added a few things...

                              - I changed containers so that I can now add items to them before beginplay, this will be good for things like treasure boxes... and I can use it for when you kill NPC's and they drop loot. This gif shows this and how to add items to the hotbar - mouse over and press the hotbar button to slot them to. I want to apologize for the inventory icons though because they are properly bad, I will redraw them properly with my tablet at some point and spend more than 10 seconds with my mouse.

                              -Added a firefly particle system which appears at night, its a blueprint I can drag to a certain area - will eventually make it so it spawns near player pawn

                              - Added a new tree, which falls down when you hit it, I think this is the technique I will now use for most of the foliage in the game, the fir trees I originally had will make a reappearance but with this technique implemented

                              - And the hotbar now actually works. Right now only the hand object mesh is being swapped, no stats are being changed yet because I have not implemented stats for the player yet. Though now I can cross the hotbar off my to do list player stats is the next thing I will work on. Although player stats plugs into a lot of things so it will take a while to implement fully.

                              Full Video:

                              Now I think my next step is to start implementing the dungeon. Ive only created procedural content like that once before so I thnk it will take a while to get the basics there. I want the player to have to go through the dungeon floor by floor, and I will be able to set items (village pieces) the player can retrieve on each floor. But each floor will be generated procedurally.

                              As a player it wont be much of a challenge yet because right now AI will only stand in one place and attack. I suppose next goal is to be able to go inside the dungeon, retrieve item and go back to the main map and place that item

                              I wanted the main area to be procedurally generated however I could not find a way to generate landscapes without extensive C++ knowledge (which I do not have)
                              This is why the dungeons will be procedural, for replayability

                              Will post more updates tomorow
                              Last edited by Orkney; 03-03-2018, 08:44 PM.
                              My Game Frontier Devblog HERE