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Thread: Skulls & Timber - Pirate Survival Game - WIP Thread

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    Pirate Survival Game - WIP Thread

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    Hello everyone of the Unreal community!

    We would like to present our work in progress project called "Skulls and Timber".


    About the game

    Skulls and Timber is a third person multiplayer survival game set in fantasy version of the golden age of piracy. The goal of the game is to survive, find treasure, plunder enemy ships and become the richest most notorious pirate of the server. Set sail to mysterious islands littered with jumping puzzles, temples, dungeons, dangerous jungles where you will find legendary treasures or simply grant everyone that crosses your path a one way ticket to Davey Jones' locker.
    The game features several ships that are available to buy using gold you will get from selling treasures to traders. You are also able to craft clothing, weaponry and tools. Skulls and Timber features ships combat, survival gameplay such as cooking, gathering and crafting, combat with pistols, rifles, and melee weapons, trading, exploring and advanced server-side pvp competition.

    Customization and interactivity is key in Skulls & Timber. We want players to be able to leave their mark on the seven seas by allowing in-depth customization of your ship, such as colors, sail logos, different types of ship parts that allow for faster turning, top speed, hit points and cannon damage. As well as player loadout and customization through awesome clothes, weapons, hair styles, tattoos, skin color, scars and much more!

    You can choose to join a dedicated server which will hold up to 25 - 50 people or host your own server to play alone or with friends.

    Later on we will also add mpre NPC enemies and ships. But for now we will first focus on the multiplayer aspects of the game.

    And remember, as Mr. Gibbs once said to a rather notorious captain, "Take what ye can, give nothing back!"


    Ship combat preview:




    Some very early screenshots:

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    Finished:
    * Fully multiplayer synchronised water shader with bouyancy
    * Ship sailing and combat with cannons
    * Melee combat
    * Ranged combat (pistols, muskets,...)
    * Repairing, actionbar and weapon switching
    * day and night cycle
    * Interactable system (Lots of small things to interact with such as lamps, hatches, rope ladders, ...)
    * Advanced ship repair system (localized damage)
    * water culling system (below sea level ship interiors)
    * Chat system
    * Ship resource system (wood, cannon balls, ... )
    * Main character and animations


    Current W.I.P:

    * Optimization, bug fixing and multiplayer testing
    * Inventory, crafting, treasures and NPC trading


    Thanks for checking out our game project!

    Please, let us know what you like / dislike, pointers, opinions, ideas, ..anything that can help us evolve this game into an awesome pirate game.

    Skulls & Timber is a 2 man project so development might be slow at times. But know that we are living for this project. Meaning we work on it every single chance we get. We really hope that many people will play and enjoy our game and therefor want to make it as great as we can. We also care deeply about optimization and want the game to look as good and more importantly run great on as wide a range of systems as possible.

    Thanks for your time!
    Attached Images Attached Images                
    Last edited by WixZ; 05-15-2017 at 12:38 PM.

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    I always love the stylish graphic, keep it up

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    Thanks godmachine33 and raventhebird! We don't have much to show right now. But in a few days we will be able to showcase our final character with animations and some more gameplay footage.

  5. #5
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    I love the looks and the ideas - survival has always been a rush, and I absolutely love the Age of Sail. Went from lurker to poster just because of your post. So, if you need someone to test, play, record - I'd love to have a whack and a play about.

  6. #6
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    I love the color of the ocean!

    What water material are you using custom, or modified?

  7. #7
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    This looks Ace, the look is really nice, cant wait to see more of it

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    Hey all thanks for the comments! The Ocean material is completely custom made although not finished yet (foam texture and fine detail still need to be added). The bouyancy is based on the market place addon called "physical water surface". I've been in close contact with the maker through email and he has provided a marvelous amount of support. So definitely go check out his addon, it's very user friendly and well made.

    Some basic gameplay is almost ready. You can already take the wheel of ships and sail them around with other players on board. And melee combat is almost done. When the melee combat is finished we will make a small gameplay video to show you all where we are at.

    After that we will be adding cannons you can fire, ship damage, repairing and ranged combat. This should be finished in the next few weeks if things go as planned. Stay tuned!

    Here are some small teaser previews:

    new player models and animations
    https://gyazo.com/be51fad764e1a68738206fe9b9581b01

    ship controlling
    https://gyazo.com/3661cc70ff10cbdaf1d6bde096128751

    first person run / jump and attack animations
    https://gyazo.com/72e61fe7006a8c3c5dd28f267a4b7670
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-11-2017 at 05:48 PM.

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    Small update:

    damage indicator and particle / sound effects as well as ballistic projectile drop and projectile trail
    https://gyazo.com/8262e9907351b769e850d10d2c8ef73c

    and ships can now be sunk
    https://gyazo.com/10a492cf4306c40a651569d96bb1fbdf

    melee combat, death and respawn (melee combat is completely ray cast based, the blade generates a trail of perpendicular rays which makes melee combat very accurate and fun)
    https://gyazo.com/4a27e32d642863f2f63eadcd17108135

    Cannon models are already finished just need to bring them in. Next up is new ship model.
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-11-2017 at 05:58 PM.

  10. #10
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    Looks amazing, I've been waiting for a game following by this pirate themed idea

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by WixZ View Post
    Small update:

    damage indicator and particle / sound effects as well as ballistic projectile drop and projectile trail
    https://gyazo.com/8262e9907351b769e850d10d2c8ef73c

    and ships can now be sunk
    https://gyazo.com/10a492cf4306c40a651569d96bb1fbdf

    melee combat, death and respawn (melee combat is completely ray cast based, the blade generates a trail of perpendicular rays which makes melee combat very accurate and fun)
    https://gyazo.com/4a27e32d642863f2f63eadcd17108135

    Cannon models are already finished just need to bring them in. Next up is new ship model.
    good to see that u keep the promise of updating , nice job and it look nice

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    Quote Originally Posted by raventhebird View Post
    good to see that u keep the promise of updating , nice job and it look nice
    Thanks! And yes I want to keep you guys posted on what we are doing as much as possible!

    What we have finished last few days:

    - Cannons, complete with particle effects, model, mechanics
    - New weapon system and action bar. New weapons can now very easily be added and players can now have weapons in their action bar and switch to them.
    - Ships take damage and sink from cannon fire
    - Damage indicator (screenshot below)
    - Some new icons, models, sounds, particles

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    And as some gyazos:

    https://gyazo.com/b72e9834286d9daf0d4f8294326b4596

    https://gyazo.com/1897150d09afe9c9e1a5b5af3a9acd54

    As you can see in the screenshots, you will be able to craft land cannons to fire on ships at sea. Say you have found a nice island, you can choose to stay there a while to gather all it's resources and find all it's treasures and build a few cannons on top of a cliff to fend off other pirates that might want to come ashore.

    Next up:

    - New ship model and interactable / repairable parts such as hull, masts, sails, cabin and canons will also break and can be repaired.
    - Cannon loading system. (grab balls from deck, place in cannon wait for it to load and extra fire mode: quick fire when pressing "f" which will fire the cannon without actually going in it for fast firing of loaded cannons in close range combat)
    - New ship will also have crows nest in which you can climb
    - The press "e" ladder needs to change in real ladder (it was just a placeholder to get on ship fast when in the water)
    - flintlock pistol to be added and perhaps also a fuse bomb
    - some water imporvements (foam, distant water visual tweaks, shore opacity ...)

    And our blog will go online in one of next few days, we will post a link to it as soon as it's online. Updates will be more structured and organized and you will be able to leave comments.

    And good news for those that would like to try our game in realtime, we will release a small demo build after our blog has launched and when we get a few more things working. You will be able to play it with your friends. We will add a guide on how to connect to your friend as a fully fledged server browser is not yet complete.
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-13-2017 at 10:51 PM.

  13. #13
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    wow, looks amazing
    and in case you are looking for a modeler i'll be happy to work on such a project

  14. #14
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    This looks really cool, am looking forward to see more from you guys!

    And you should check out the "Orbit - Weather and Seasons" pack from the marketplace. It's super cheap and will give you a full, customizable day & night system + weather effects (even storms). I bought it a while ago for my own project and am really happy with it.
    The link is here: https://www.unrealengine.com/marketplace/orbit-weather-and-seasons

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    Quote Originally Posted by spacegojira View Post
    This looks really cool, am looking forward to see more from you guys!

    And you should check out the "Orbit - Weather and Seasons" pack from the marketplace. It's super cheap and will give you a full, customizable day & night system + weather effects (even storms). I bought it a while ago for my own project and am really happy with it.
    The link is here: https://www.unrealengine.com/marketplace/orbit-weather-and-seasons
    That looks really interesting indeed. Just 2 questions. Does the day and night cycle include moon lighting? And how performance heavy is this? Those volumetric clouds look extremely nice and would fit our game perfect. But I fear they will require a bit too much computing power. Knowing that we already have a very demaning water shader.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by WixZ View Post
    That looks really interesting indeed. Just 2 questions. Does the day and night cycle include moon lighting? And how performance heavy is this? Those volumetric clouds look extremely nice and would fit our game perfect. But I fear they will require a bit too much computing power. Knowing that we already have a very demaning water shader.
    It indeed comes with moon lightning, it really has tons of options and as I remember you can also set how much moonlight there is, the angle, color, etc.

    I can't really give you a definite answer about how performance heavy it is, it's probably better to ask the Maker of it (he's a nice guy and usually replies very fast). But it has a few options for the quality level of the volumetric clouds, the lightning, and all the stuff that affects performance, without (in my opinion) looking bad on the low levels.
    I saw only a few fps (like 2-4) drop in my project, but that was in a rather empty scene without a lot going on. I yet have to test it in a heavy load scene. So I think it really depends on how you set it up.

    My guess is, as you've a talented developer in your team already, he should be able to tweak it enough to make it usable without a big performance loss. And you could always just use it for the very customizable day & night cycle and maybe the weather effects, since your clouds look really nice already and fit your artstyle very well. Or just use it as a base to build / expand your own system.


    Hope that helps. (:

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    Quote Originally Posted by spacegojira View Post
    It indeed comes with moon lightning, it really has tons of options and as I remember you can also set how much moonlight there is, the angle, color, etc.

    I can't really give you a definite answer about how performance heavy it is, it's probably better to ask the Maker of it (he's a nice guy and usually replies very fast). But it has a few options for the quality level of the volumetric clouds, the lightning, and all the stuff that affects performance, without (in my opinion) looking bad on the low levels.
    I saw only a few fps (like 2-4) drop in my project, but that was in a rather empty scene without a lot going on. I yet have to test it in a heavy load scene. So I think it really depends on how you set it up.

    My guess is, as you've a talented developer in your team already, he should be able to tweak it enough to make it usable without a big performance loss. And you could always just use it for the very customizable day & night cycle and maybe the weather effects, since your clouds look really nice already and fit your artstyle very well. Or just use it as a base to build / expand your own system.


    Hope that helps. (:
    Thanks for the info! I've contacted the maker and watched videos of the system and others like it for almost an entire day. You really got me into finding a good sky solution. And yesterday evening I came to a conclussion after exntensive comparing between Orbit and Ultra dynamic sky. And we finally settled for ultra dynamic sky due to the fact it's a very leight weight solution. Orbit has a LOT of awesome features and for it's price it's definitely a solid buy. But most of the features provided in Orbit are features that we are probably never going to use and weren't really looking for in particular. For example the rain and snow effects use distant fields which we can't enable in our project due to heavy performance hits when combined with our water shader as we use a transparency sorting workaround that is quite the hit on FPS and causes issues with distance field generating. Also, we didn't really like the night time cloud look and the system doesn't come with a good fog solution. It requires us to enable yet another performance hungry feature (volumetric lighting) which would end being way over our graphical budget. One of the main goals of creating our game is still providing a VERY smooth experience for as many systems as possible. The thunder and rain by itself could be useful in our project in the distant future though. That was one thing that had us interested. But in the end we came down to the conclusion that we just wanted an epic day night cycle that creates the exact atmosphere and mood we want at any second of the day. And we found that Ultra dynamic sky does exactly that. In terms of atmosphere color and also because it's lightweight, very easy to customize (as is Orbit of course) and set up. I've now implemented UDS and we are all very happy with the results. It's very customizable and all the color curves are very easy to adjust. So I can definitely recommend UDS as day and night solution as well.

    Orbit is a brilliant system, especially for it's very modest price. But the out of the box beauty and lightweight solution of UDS won us over. We thank you in particular for bringing it to our attention that there are full blown day and night systems out there. We were actually going to create our own. Which would most likely not be anywhere as great as Orbit or UDS and take forever.

    Some screenshots of different times of day will follow shortly when our water shader has reached it's next step. We have also added a few new features to the game as wel as a fully completed (VERY awesome) ship model. I can't get over how awesome a job our artist did and can't wait to show you folks. So stay tuned!

    A very darkish sneak peak, as to not reveal too much yet: https://gyazo.com/4f399ecaba25294f87d012b522c46714 :3 (And yes that's UDS in action. The moon still has to change to something more fitting though)
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-17-2017 at 10:49 AM.

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    Some new screenshots for you guys:

    Most of the things you see in the screenshots are interactable. You can turn off/ on lanterns, you can go into the crow's nest, use cannons, steer the ship, repair the ship, open hatches, drop ladders, open sails, ... and much much more will folow. There are also a lot of things that are moving, such as sails, masts, ladders, hanging lanterns, .... We want the gameplay on the ships to be really interactive. Lots of small things you can change and do. We are now in the process of fixing some bugs and getting some players together for some extensive multiplayer testing. All the while we will be recording. And in a few days we will release our first gameplay video.


    For some reason the screenshots are not showing in this post. Just check the first opening post to see them. I updated it with the new screenshots. Cheers!
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-20-2017 at 01:34 AM.

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    A small video of me going through some of the stuff we have atm. It's a bit of crappy video with not much actual gameplay. But we are working on getting some people together to do a live multiplayer video. So stay tuned.



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    Hello everyone!

    We have a small announcement to make. We have been debating over a few things concerning the roadmap of Skulls & Timber. Out of this debate came two major decisions.

    First off we will be changing from a 1st person camera to a 3rd person camera. Reason being this will save us A LOT of time and headaches, so we can focus on content and quality of awesome animations / models.

    Secondly, we will be overhauling our graphical style a little bit. We initially chose for a diffuse none-texture style. But we have decided to add some texture detail after all. We will be adding normal detail using zbrush to pretty much everything we make, giving it more character and making our world feel less empty.

    What does this mean for development? Well, we will have to rework quite a bit of models (unwrapping them, adding detail, reimporting) and we have to rewrite some code to make everything based on 1 third person camera viewpoint. This will halt further development for about a week. After that we will do some more bug fixing and tweaking and then we hope to finally make a multiplayer video. We have promised this for much too long now and it's really time we made one. The difficulty is getting people together to record the gameplay. As everyone we can send the build always has something to do that prevents them from being able to play when everyone else does. But redemption is close as we are looking to set up a dedicated server soon once we get a stable build with little to no bugs and then we will send out some builds to folks so they can connect to the server whenever they want. The server will most likely have 50 slots. Which should be plenty to always have at least a few players online. If you are interested in receiving a build to play test, please don't hesitate to send me a pm!

    We are sorry for the delay and the fact we haven't updated the thread in more than a week, we needed some time to clear some things up and discuss some important matters about the future of our game. But everything is now back on track and we are ready to throw you guys new updates weekly. So stick around!
    Last edited by WixZ; 03-30-2017 at 11:11 PM.


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    Here are two screenshots of how our new rocks look. This is to give you all an idea of where we are going with the graphical style change that we mentioned yesterday.

    The rocks are still missing a moss texture and vines and everything of course and they are getting a small last pass to crispen up some details and make them a bit cleaner still. Hope you like it.

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    Last edited by WixZ; 03-31-2017 at 10:12 PM.


  22. #22
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    wow your game looks so beautiful, love the models and the textures style so amazing, for some reason it gives me an ambition to work on my game

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zachery Broski View Post
    wow your game looks so beautiful, love the models and the textures style so amazing, for some reason it gives me an ambition to work on my game
    Thanks a lot! Always great to inspire other people! ^^


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    Player character sculpted!

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    Love the new direction in art style, color palette and the third person camera.

    The game art direction reminds me Sea of Thieves, which for me is one of the best looking games in development with Unreal. (Now if only they made a single player RPG at this setting...)

    Any single player options for your game?

    Regarding the ocean did you use only material shaders and blueprints and replicating variables or anything more complicated with cpp?

    Anyway good luck with your project, looks really good

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makis View Post
    Love the new direction in art style, color palette and the third person camera.

    The game art direction reminds me Sea of Thieves, which for me is one of the best looking games in development with Unreal. (Now if only they made a single player RPG at this setting...)

    Any single player options for your game?

    Regarding the ocean did you use only material shaders and blueprints and replicating variables or anything more complicated with cpp?

    Anyway good luck with your project, looks really good
    Hey there!

    You should be in luck as our game will in fact have singleplayer! We are focusing firstly on multiplayer survival gameplay though, but as soon as all the basics for that are done and working we will move onto implementing A.I. which includes skeletons, spiders, giants, zombies, sea monsters and more. As for actual rpg elements, it kind of depends. Our singleplayer experiences will be kind of a mix between survival and treasure hunting / exploring. Not much actual story telling though, so if you are looking for that in particular you might be disappointed. However, we do intend to add small "stories" to some islands. For example things you will find in a dungeon or cave which will all have a bit of a small story to tell. Oh, and easter eggs, tons and tons of those. Small things that should ring a bell for most people, but also a lot of things for true pirate lore / movie fans. I don't want to spoil anything, so you will have to find out when you play the game. But I'm sure you can already guess some (or a lot) of Pirates of the Caribbean stuff will be in there which was after all our main inspiration.

    We are aware of Sea of Thives, a brilliant game being developped by Rare. We can only dream of ever getting close to their artstyle. They have been one of the reasons we decided to up our level. Not because we want to make our game better than theirs, but we certainly don't want it to fall TOO far behind in terms of visual appeal. Our gameplay is however quite different from Sea of Thieves, as we are much more aiming for survival gameplay combined with naval combat. As they are aiming more for co-op RPG adventure. We always dreamed of making a survival game with all it's familiarties such as gathering, crafting and making sure you don't starve to death and such, but we thought it would be cool to step away from the modern settings with guns and zombies and go for something with a bit more fantasy and a more classic setting. That and the other reason that survival crafting games are flooding the indie market at the moment so going for an unoriginal one has a very high chance of it going unnoticed. And of course we are crazy about pirates and ship combat so yeah the link was quickly made.

    The ocean was made purely using blueprints and using the Unreal material editor. No c++ code has been used so far. Note though, that the actual bouyancy calculations are not made by us, but come from a plugin called "physical water surface" which you can find on the marketplace. The only thing I added to it is multiplayer support. But this wasn't too much work as the calculations are all based on the game time value, which I only needed to sync between the clients and server by providing each connected clientt with an offset to it's own gametime based on the difference between the server and it's local time. In case of hiccups or freezes, the water gets automatically resynced every 5 minutes. The visual appearance of the ocean was completely hand-made using the material editor. It took me a while to get everything looking close to what we want, and there is still a lot of tweaking and work to be done on it. But if some people want I can share the shader with you all. I can say though that it relies on the most demanding type of translucent lighting method, which is quite the performance eater. But without it you get almost no specular highlights on the water so it's a must to get it looking like water. We are optimizing everywhere we can in our game to compensate for our water shader so I would highly advise doing the same thing should you use it. I may be overreacting here a bit, as the game runs really great on my system at the moment, which has a gtx 970 and i7 cpu. Not the shabbiest of specs, I know. But we have tested our game on much less capable systems and it still runs quite smooth with everything set to ultra which is standard atm. Later on there will of course be reduction settings which should make the game run really great on a very wide range of specs. As mentioned we are very serious about optimizing wherever we can.


  27. #27
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    I think the art style you guys chose works really well. Just make sure the gameplay is fun and you got a buyer

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    Quote Originally Posted by HolyManfred View Post
    I think the art style you guys chose works really well. Just make sure the gameplay is fun and you got a buyer
    Thanks a lot!

    The main goal of our game is to provide an easy to learn fun gameplay that can get everyone excited even after a few minutes in. The core game is losely based on survival, but we are much more leaning towards fun combat and exploration. The survival is there to fill in the gaps and to give the player stuff to do and work his way up to be that awesome pirate captain he wants to be and to commandeer that ultimate ship. We just posted an in-depth gameplay FAQ on our indieDB page, you should definitly check it out if you want to know a bit more about the gameplay.

    http://www.indiedb.com/games/skulls-timber/news/ships-and-bounties


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    Quote Originally Posted by WixZ View Post
    Hey there!

    You should be in luck as our game will in fact have singleplayer! We are focusing firstly on multiplayer survival gameplay though, but as soon as all the basics for that are done and working we will move onto implementing A.I. which includes skeletons, spiders, giants, zombies, sea monsters and more. As for actual rpg elements, it kind of depends. Our singleplayer experiences will be kind of a mix between survival and treasure hunting / exploring. Not much actual story telling though, so if you are looking for that in particular you might be disappointed. However, we do intend to add small "stories" to some islands. For example things you will find in a dungeon or cave which will all have a bit of a small story to tell. Oh, and easter eggs, tons and tons of those. Small things that should ring a bell for most people, but also a lot of things for true pirate lore / movie fans. I don't want to spoil anything, so you will have to find out when you play the game. But I'm sure you can already guess some (or a lot) of Pirates of the Caribbean stuff will be in there which was after all our main inspiration.

    We are aware of Sea of Thives, a brilliant game being developped by Rare. We can only dream of ever getting close to their artstyle. They have been one of the reasons we decided to up our level. Not because we want to make our game better than theirs, but we certainly don't want it to fall TOO far behind in terms of visual appeal. Our gameplay is however quite different from Sea of Thieves, as we are much more aiming for survival gameplay combined with naval combat. As they are aiming more for co-op RPG adventure. We always dreamed of making a survival game with all it's familiarties such as gathering, crafting and making sure you don't starve to death and such, but we thought it would be cool to step away from the modern settings with guns and zombies and go for something with a bit more fantasy and a more classic setting. That and the other reason that survival crafting games are flooding the indie market at the moment so going for an unoriginal one has a very high chance of it going unnoticed. And of course we are crazy about pirates and ship combat so yeah the link was quickly made.

    The ocean was made purely using blueprints and using the Unreal material editor. No c++ code has been used so far. Note though, that the actual bouyancy calculations are not made by us, but come from a plugin called "physical water surface" which you can find on the marketplace. The only thing I added to it is multiplayer support. But this wasn't too much work as the calculations are all based on the game time value, which I only needed to sync between the clients and server by providing each connected clientt with an offset to it's own gametime based on the difference between the server and it's local time. In case of hiccups or freezes, the water gets automatically resynced every 5 minutes. The visual appearance of the ocean was completely hand-made using the material editor. It took me a while to get everything looking close to what we want, and there is still a lot of tweaking and work to be done on it. But if some people want I can share the shader with you all. I can say though that it relies on the most demanding type of translucent lighting method, which is quite the performance eater. But without it you get almost no specular highlights on the water so it's a must to get it looking like water. We are optimizing everywhere we can in our game to compensate for our water shader so I would highly advise doing the same thing should you use it. I may be overreacting here a bit, as the game runs really great on my system at the moment, which has a gtx 970 and i7 cpu. Not the shabbiest of specs, I know. But we have tested our game on much less capable systems and it still runs quite smooth with everything set to ultra which is standard atm. Later on there will of course be reduction settings which should make the game run really great on a very wide range of specs. As mentioned we are very serious about optimizing wherever we can.
    Fantastic news WizX. Story telling, is not necessary at all, just give the player quest missions, and random events, to explore the world and and participate as he explore the world. This leads to player to Role Play as he likes.

    As for more RPG layers, character stats etc i understand it is not the game you make, but still your game sounds exciting. And i love the fantasy, pirates theme setting. It is something that we don't see very often.

    Just i hope the survival aspect it is not overdone as in most games where you must eat sleep every few minutes. A player could go without a food, for weeks in game and without water for days. It should be more a preparation for the next missions.

    That's my two cents of course, it is your game.

    As of Sea of thieves, i am not sure what their gameplay direction is, except we have to be online, multiplayer because... single player games are dead...

    The art is stunning but i am not really very optimistic.

    For my game i will have a similar material for ocean. Mainly need it for traveling, trading, between islands no combat. I have made some rough prototypes in the past and there is a lot of info from community.

    But if you like to share any info it is welcome. It will be helpful for others too. For the networking part i don't plan to do multiplayer but always check some basic system how it would work on multiplayer.

    You sent the server time to each client and the calculate the difference and offset the game time?

    As for optimizing i understand water area will be a big part/time of your game, but don't overdo it at other parts, make the game/systems you want first and then optimize.

    With the latest versions of the engine, the blueprint Nativization would be helpful too.

    Now i am waiting for more updates!

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makis View Post
    Fantastic news WizX. Story telling, is not necessary at all, just give the player quest missions, and random events, to explore the world and and participate as he explore the world. This leads to player to Role Play as he likes.

    As for more RPG layers, character stats etc i understand it is not the game you make, but still your game sounds exciting. And i love the fantasy, pirates theme setting. It is something that we don't see very often.

    Just i hope the survival aspect it is not overdone as in most games where you must eat sleep every few minutes. A player could go without a food, for weeks in game and without water for days. It should be more a preparation for the next missions.

    That's my two cents of course, it is your game.

    As of Sea of thieves, i am not sure what their gameplay direction is, except we have to be online, multiplayer because... single player games are dead...

    The art is stunning but i am not really very optimistic.

    For my game i will have a similar material for ocean. Mainly need it for traveling, trading, between islands no combat. I have made some rough prototypes in the past and there is a lot of info from community.

    But if you like to share any info it is welcome. It will be helpful for others too. For the networking part i don't plan to do multiplayer but always check some basic system how it would work on multiplayer.

    You sent the server time to each client and the calculate the difference and offset the game time?

    As for optimizing i understand water area will be a big part/time of your game, but don't overdo it at other parts, make the game/systems you want first and then optimize.

    With the latest versions of the engine, the blueprint Nativization would be helpful too.

    Now i am waiting for more updates!
    The survival aspect will not be as extreme as in regular survival games. As mentioned before the survival in our game will kind of be like a minimum base form. You will have to eat, but not every 5 minutes. You will have to craft clothes and tools, but only once. You will however need to go back to islands every now and then to stock up on wood, iron and such to repair your ship. Ships needs to be repaired with resources. If you are planning to stay on the water for a while, it's wise to fill your ships inventory with as much resources as possible. Cannon balls will need to be crafted as well. Cannon ammo will be linked with the ship's storage. You dont' have to reload them manually, but when there are no more cannon balls in the ship storage you will not be able to fire the cannons anymore. Same goes for repairs, you can keep repairing the ship as long as there is wood in the storage. You can repair cannons if there is iron in the storage. And so on... You will be able to fish from upon the deck of your ship as well so for food you don't always have to go to an island, only to repair and get ammo or to explore the islands. This is kind of how "far" the survival in our game goes. You will not have a cold meter or any other small meters. Only a food and health meter. When your food is above 50% your hp will autmatically regenerate. When your food is below 50% it will not. That's kind of the only reason we have food in the game. So as you can see survival will not stand in the way of the other gameplay aspects, it will merely add a bit more depth.

    The water is synchronised by checking if a client is connected using post login event in game mode. If yes, the server sents it's own gametime to that client. That client then compares his own game time with the server's and looks at the offset, this offset is then applied to the client's game time so it matches the server. This also happens with a server to client wide event which re-synchronizes the water every 5 minutes. In theory this is not really needed as there is no immediate reason why the water should ever go out of sync, as the game time once synced should always keep ticking at the same rate regardless of hiccups and such. But just to make sure and beause it doesn't hurt anyone I force the resync every 5 minutes just because i'm a paranoid maniac. :P

    About the blueprint nativization, we are having issues with it. Building our game with it works fine. But when we launch our game we get an error. Very strange. We've been looking for a solution for a while now and can't find it. Once we fix that we should be able to build our game using nativization.

    About character stats, there will not really be such a thing in our game. However there will be a level system. Most of the stuff you can get in the game will have to be bought with gold. A lot of this stuff will only be available at certain levels. At first the buying menu will be accessible from anywhere. But later we might add npc's all around the world that all sell different things. But we are not sure yet. We will see in the future.


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    Here is a screenshot of some of our new foliage.

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    Last edited by WixZ; 04-05-2017 at 02:02 AM.


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    I'm defiantly very excited for this game, the new foliage looks great and will defiantly suit the style. I personally am a big fan of anything pirate so I am defiantly interested in receiving a test build

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Totle View Post
    I'm defiantly very excited for this game, the new foliage looks great and will defiantly suit the style. I personally am a big fan of anything pirate so I am defiantly interested in receiving a test build
    Hey totle thanks a lot, your excitement means a lot to us! Check out IndieDB I sent you a reply there.


  34. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Makis View Post
    The new foliage looks great WixZ. Keep up the good work.
    Thanks!

    Here are a few screenshots of our water shader update. We added refraction, more dynamic foam and some color tweaks. Don't mind the old models, they still need to be overhauled.

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    Last edited by WixZ; 04-05-2017 at 05:08 PM.


  36. #36
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    Hey guys!

    Small update for you today.

    What we added last few days:

    * Some big water shader updates (refraction, new dynamic foam) like you saw earlier this week
    * Almost all foliage has now been reworked with our new visual style as you seen earlier this week (we still have to implement it in our map though)
    * Ragdolls when you die.
    * Endless ocean material / shader for very far distant ocean
    * swimming system - complete with all animations
    * new particles (cannon smoke and impact particles)
    * New sounds (new cannon sound, new impact sound, cannon balls now also make a whizzing sound when flying by)
    * Some bug fixes
    * Respawn timer (soon respawn screen will allow you to choose location as well)
    * And more tweaking

    Here are some gyazos:

    Seamless endless ocean

    Ragdolls

    Swimming

    SPLOOSH!

    Cannon smoke particle

    Respawn timer

    And some water splash effects when sailing at high speeds (these are actually caused by waves, not random)

    Hope you like!
    Last edited by WixZ; 04-07-2017 at 10:56 PM.


  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by WixZ View Post
    Hey guys!

    Small update for you today.

    What we added last few days:

    * Some big water shader updates (refraction, new dynamic foam) like you saw earlier this week
    * Almost all foliage has now been reworked with our new visual style as you seen earlier this week (we still have to implement it in our map though)
    * Ragdolls when you die.
    * Endless ocean material / shader for very far distant ocean
    * swimming system - complete with all animations
    * new particles (cannon smoke and impact particles)
    * New sounds (new cannon sound, new impact sound, cannon balls now also make a whizzing sound when flying by)
    * Some bug fixes
    * Respawn timer (soon respawn screen will allow you to choose location as well)
    * And more tweaking

    Here are some gyazos:

    Seamless endless ocean

    Ragdolls

    Swimming

    SPLOOSH!

    Cannon smoke particle

    Respawn timer

    And some water splash effects when sailing at high speeds (these are actually caused by waves, not random)

    Hope you like!
    Looks great WizX!

    Now i know probably characters assets/animations are the most difficult thing to do, at least this is where i am struggling.

    But if you have an artist in the team, maybe add a bit more detail to characters during the sculpting of the body/face and you will have nailed it!

    Sea of thieves, we were talking the other day, is a good example of it. They don't take it to extreme either.

    I guess later with more detailed outfits your character will look even better.

    What setup are you using for lighting?

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    The looks of the game are awesome, very stylish, yet retaining lots of detail

    I really dig the water. Could you guide us on the making of that shader? Any pointers would be welcome!

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makis View Post
    Looks great WizX!

    Now i know probably characters assets/animations are the most difficult thing to do, at least this is where i am struggling.

    But if you have an artist in the team, maybe add a bit more detail to characters during the sculpting of the body/face and you will have nailed it!

    Sea of thieves, we were talking the other day, is a good example of it. They don't take it to extreme either.

    I guess later with more detailed outfits your character will look even better.

    What setup are you using for lighting?
    Hey Makis! Do you mean that the characters shown in the gyazos are lacking detail? If yes, that's perfectly normal, those are placeholder characters. Our actual character will be scultped with a lot of detail as seen a few posts ago. It's not in-game yet because we still need to finish it up, skin and rig it.

    The lighting is quite simple really, we use ultra dynamic sky with 2 directional lights, one for the sun and one for the moon. We have played a lot with the color curves and individual light settings though to get it looking just the way we want. The point lights we use don't cast any dynamic shadows because we only use dynamic moveable lights and we want to keep the performance of our game very high.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sithdown View Post
    The looks of the game are awesome, very stylish, yet retaining lots of detail

    I really dig the water. Could you guide us on the making of that shader? Any pointers would be welcome!
    Thanks a lot! Yes, I would definitely be willing to make a guide on how I did the water. I'll look into making a video sometime soon where I cover all the aspects of it and run through the shader step by step. I'm not really going to create a tutorial for it as that would be A LOT of work because the shader is pretty big and has a lot of small features that when fully explained would require an entire series of tutorials. :P

    I'll post the video here when it's done.

    This should give you an idea of what's in it and it's complexity. Note though that this is only the visual part of the shader, the actual waves are generated seperately. Detailed information will follow...
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    Last edited by WixZ; 04-08-2017 at 02:12 PM.


  40. #40
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    Update! The spawnmap has been added. Also, all foliage is now finished and our artist has begun blocking out the second island. A very big one. We plan to have an old abandoned fort on it, an overgrown ancient temple, lots of hanging bridges, some caves, a stranded ship on the beach and some other stuff. It's going to be one of the biggest islands in the game.

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    Here it is in action: Spawnscreen

    Here is the new island blockout seen from the old small island
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    One of the islands many beaches
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    This is the other part of the island where the fort will be
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    Comparison with old island (in-editor, not ingame, hence ugly water and graphics :P)
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    And some new HUD graphics
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    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by WixZ; 04-11-2017 at 04:46 PM.


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