More recent screenshots

It’s been three weeks since my last post, time for another recap.

While the two first weeks that will be covered were mostly oriented on getting big systems working, or on improving existing systems, this last week has been the occasion of working on a multitude of minor details that need to be ready for an interesting user experience. I’m currently working on making a first test version for a few concurrent users. If successful, I might try to gather more people – even if there’s nothing to do in the game at the moment outside of fighting each other or mobs – to check how the server application will handle a real load with real network latencies. At the moment, I’m still targetting a few hundred concurrent users.
But for now, here are more screenshots of recent development:

I keep (slightly) improving graphics, adding some details here and there, modifying colors… It was the case for the sky, that is now a bit closer to what a sky should look like:

Updated sky color.

I improved the water depth feeling, and added some algae:

Not obvious on a screenshot, but those algae are waving.

Mostly for testing purpose – at first – I added character collisions using terrain tiles as the base for them. I’m still testing them and need to improve them a bit, but so far I’ve been quite happy, since they give an extra TRPG feel, especially with the grid and tile indicators I’m currently using to make them obvious:

A grid to simplify tile visualisation, and colors for collision zones.

I took some time to test the render of low-resolution low-contrast textures on the terrain. On one hand, it’s satisfying to have more details, but on the other hand, it tends to make non-textured objects less attractive. I’m still not sure whether or not I’ll go for this textured style – if you have an opinion, I’ll gladly hear it. So far, most people had a preference for the simple color style over the textured one:

Textured Terrain
The textures are quite small, 8×8 pixels, and match the voxel resolution of trees.
Trees Shadows
An example of what can be done with textures: pseudo-shadow around tree trunks for a better integration.

I’ve reworked large parts of the biome and LOD system, and optimized a bit the graphic engine. It allowed me to improve by two to four the previous framerate, for a similar view range. It now allows this kind of scenery with the default settings:

Level of details view range
Probaly a bit hard to tell at first, but there are three level of details in this screenshot.

And in the most recent images I uploaded to Twitter, I’ve shown a bit more of the characters, that have been reworked to include tails for some races, and the keyframes for the future dual weapons:

Running fox-based character
Beginner stuff on a fox-based character and dual beginner swords. Not amazing, but should be kinda cute!