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[WIP] A Star Falls - Pandagon Studios Inc.

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    #16
    Hello Unreal Community,

    We have been pretty quiet lately, so we wanted to give everyone a update on the game. The team is hard at work at implementing and prototyping new and improved gameplay mechanics along with advanced procedural A.I. We have also converted our 3d modeling pipeline to include photogrammetry based assets and fully physical rendered materials. So this switch took us back a few steps by learning this new workflow but overall we have great results.

    You can learn more about the game on our projects page of our website, http://www.pandagonstudios.net/projects/ .

    The team would like to thank you for the great support and feedback we have received from the unreal community. We are still needing the help of additional people to test and give feedback on the updated game mechanics and A.I. If you are interested please fill out a application on our website, http://www.pandagonstudios.net/playtest/

    We still are not ready to show off any gameplay publicly, but we can tease some of the early character art.


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    Thank you for your support.

    From the Pandagon Studios Team
    Last edited by Panda256; 01-13-2016, 09:04 PM.

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      #17
      I was wondering how far the projects modeling has come, like if anyone could see a little bit more then have then in the past few months to give us enlightenment that this project isn't dead. I'm very curious as it is kind of bothering that there hasn't been any recent update on the development and I see a lot of members posting around to work for others.

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        #18
        Originally posted by xSoulSpectrumx View Post
        I was wondering how far the projects modeling has come, like if anyone could see a little bit more then have then in the past few months to give us enlightenment that this project isn't dead. I'm very curious as it is kind of bothering that there hasn't been any recent update on the development and I see a lot of members posting around to work for others.
        As we are finishing up prototyping and playtesting, we have been very quiet about the game. I can assure you that everything is still on track and progressing greatly. We are preparing to show off some in game work soon along with a few trailers. So please stand by.

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          #19
          We know it has been many months since our last official update, and would like to apologize that we should be more active on the forums, then we have in the past. We would like to let the community know that we are still actively developing A Star Falls. Furthermore, we will begin posting frequently to update the community about the game’s development, starting with this post.

          Since our last update, we have hired a few talented people into the studio such as, Matthew Mangini. Matthew was hired as our Lead 3D Artist. He last worked for SOE, working on Planetside 2 as an environment artist. He has been able to dramatically increase production of 3D art assets. We will share one of those assets today and plenty more in the coming weeks and months. As with all game content we share, we are open to constructive feedback on the art asset.

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          Lastly, we are currently in the process of restructuring the studio, and as a result of this process, we now have 5 open positions. You can find out more about the open positions and apply on our website, http://www.pandagonstudios.net/jobs/.

          Open positions:

          [1x] Blueprint/ C++ Programmer
          [1x] Character Artist
          [2x] 3d Artist
          Last edited by Panda256; 01-29-2016, 06:14 PM. Reason: Issue with website link

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            #20
            We wanted to start out this week's post highlighting another staff member, Jaime Marcelo, our Sound Designer/ Composer. Jaime is a performer, composer and audio engineer living in New York City. Last year, he performed at Lollapalooza, playing guitar for the band Atarah Valentine. Before that he was performing in Off-Broadway productions on violin and guitar.

            Today we would like to share two pieces of content. The first being a music track created by Jaime. You can listen to the track in its entirety on soundcloud. The second being a textured render of a hospital bed, created by our Lead 3d Artist Matthew Mangini, who will explain a little bit about the creation of the bed shown below.

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            My hospital bed represents a classic 90s design, and is set where our story begins, inside an empty patient room. I began with several photo references and sketches of a 90's style hospital bed. Using Maya, I modeled the high poly meshes for all hard surfaces and the base mesh for fabrics. The meshes were then moved to Zbrush for cloth sculpting and final details. The textures and baked bitmaps were created with Substance Painter and Substance Designer, then imported into Unreal 4 for the final results.

            The Physically Based pipeline is somewhat new to me, as it's my first time using the new set of software, from Allgorithmic Substance Suite. I’m still exploring new territory within the Substance Suite and have been especially impressed with its powerful set of features allowing for greater flexibility during projects. I’ve been challenged to quickly learn and foster these new skills and continue to look onto to other artists for more inspiration. - Matthew Mangini


            This week has been a very busy one for us. We started working on prototyping our newly re-envisioned Multi-Action Interface mechanic, that we hope to be a better fit for on the fly quick interaction with objects. This also means that we are beginning to look for more playtesters for our next round of playtesting. The playtest doesn’t have a set date yet, but we hope to have it in the hands of our playtesters in the coming weeks. If you’re interested in playtesting A Star Falls, you can visit our playtest webpage to apply. We will post more info about the playtest when it is available in this thread, on Twitter, and our Facebook page.

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              #21
              This week will be a quick update. First off, we just brought on board an award winning BAFTA writer to help us flesh out the game’s story and characters. We are very excited to have him on the team and look forward to sharing more info about him and his works in the future. Next, our lead 3D artist Matt would like to show off a WIP couch model he is working on. As usual your constructive feedback is always welcomed.

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              The prototype has made steady progress this week, and we are on track to having the Action Interface mechanic completely prototyped this week. However, the Action Interface’s development hasn’t been completely smooth. Below, Daniel Beaty our lead Level Designer, will briefly discuss a problem he had during the mechanic’s development and how he overcame it.

              One element of the Action Interface blueprint is the Text Render Component. As I’ve found out, the text component can be quite buggy, especially when it comes to updating properly in the viewport (map and blueprint viewport). For example, I would change the text but this change would not be reflected in the viewport, as you would expect. Meaning the text being rendered in the viewport is not the same as the text in the details window. Thanks to the help of AnswerHub, I discovered you can get the text to update properly in the viewport by renaming the text component or duplicating the actor it is attached to. Another bug I have encountered is the Get Text World Size function will not output the correct size in the construction graph when you change the text. This is very important as I’m using the text world size to wrap the collision box around the text. I’ve got around this bug by just wrapping the collision around the text during runtime instead of the construction graph. - Daniel Beaty

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                #22
                This week we would like to highlight our newest staff Tim Clague. Tim is a BAFTA nominated scriptwriter and an advocate for greater emotional depth in games. Tim also has accreditations as being a judge on the BAFTA Games Awards Panel. He has worked on a variety of interactive projects, from small web-based games up to being Senior Creative Designer for the large scale action MMO, “APB”. He has also created narrative based trailers for Lego, Chaos Reborn and Creative Assembly. Tim also works in ‘old media’ with his most recent feature film being the children’s mystery movie; “Who Killed Nelson Nutmeg?”.

                Next, to keep up with our weekly updates, here is a finished update to the couch model we showed off last week, modeled by our Lead 3d Artist Matthew Mangini. As usual your constructive feedback is always welcomed.

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                  #23
                  Nice to see this continuing to progress, great job

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                    #24
                    Originally posted by DarkRider View Post
                    Nice to see this continuing to progress, great job
                    Thanks DarkRider




                    This week has been a busy one for us. Our game writer, Tim Clague, has been hard at work branching out the story of “A Star Falls”, along with creating a new narrative design document, (NDD). This document outlines all the elements that influence and affect the story of “A Star Falls”, including the plot, characters and themes.

                    In this week's post we wanted to show off something a little different. Our lead artist Matthew Mangini, has been working on some materials this week for the hospital level of the game and would like to show a few off. Both materials were created in substance designer/ painter.

                    Tiled floor material

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                    Progress on the playtest has been steady. We finished creating all of the mechanics that will be in the playtest. Most of these mechanics revolve around how the player interacts with the world. Now all that is left to do is to create the level and implement all of the interactions we will be testing.

                    If you’re interested in participating in the playtest, you can fill out an application on our playtest page.

                    Comment


                      #25
                      This week we have been heavily working on the playtest. Currently, we are blocking out the level and figuring out ways to test out the interaction mechanics.


                      We want to keep up the weekly art updates, from our lead artist Matthew Mangini, with a untextured model of a dresser on wheels that will be used in the playtest and in the patient rooms of the hospital. Constructive feedback is always welcomed.

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                        #26
                        nice i like it sketches very good (=
                        WIP - Sky City project
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                          #27
                          This week we have made great strides to both the art assets and the playtest. To keep up with the increasing need for pushing out art assets we opened up a Shader and Texture Artist position for the studio. This person will be responsible for creating and optimizing PBR shaders and textures within the project. To learn more about the position or to apply please visit our jobs page on our website.

                          Next, to keep up with our weekly updates here is a finished update to the dresser model we showed off last week, modeled by our Lead 3d Artist Matt. As usual your constructive feedback is always welcomed.

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                          If you’re interested in participating in the playtest, you can fill out an application on our playtest page.

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                            #28
                            The past few weeks we have been working hard to finish the playtest, and we are happy to announce that we expect to roll out the next playtest within the coming week. With that said, we still could use a few more playtesters, so if you are interested in becoming a playtester for us, please fill out an application on our website. Once the playtest is ready, we will send out an email to all of our playtesters with instructions on how to download and perform the playtest.

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                              #29
                              We would like to thank everyone who completed the playtest so far. The second round of invites have been sent out today. If you are interested in becoming a playtester, please fill out an application on our website. If you are selected, will send out an email to you with instructions on how to download and perform the playtest.

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                                #30
                                We would like to thank everyone once again for your playtest responses and feedback. The feedback we received has helped us to improve the feel of the interaction system.

                                Over the last month and a half things have progressed quite nicely. We welcomed two new staff onto the team, Joshua England as our Jr 3D Artist and Matthew Gillmeister as our 3D Character Artist. The studio has also been experimenting with photogrammetry using Agisoft Photoscan, and we look forward to showing off what we have been able to produce using photogrammetry, in the near future.

                                In this update we wanted to showcase one of our new employees Joshua England. Joshua is currently an Environment Artist at Funcom helping to create content for “The Secret World”. Joshua will be providing his talents to help create the mood and atmosphere of “A Star Falls”. One of the first assets he completed was the lighter that will be used by the main player.

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