Hello again, welcome back! Time to dust this old thing off and come and you all with another update. Sorry it’s been a while, but in the meantime, we have been making some good progress on the game. Here’s a few updates for you all:
Decals & Gibs
Not super exciting, but definitely a more practical element that needed to be completed, some working decals:
The decals work dynamically, so they’re mostly going to be useful for blood splatter effects. I figured the best way to test that would be to try out gibbing some enemies. While the models and textures are just placeholder, it certainly was fun to test.
Finally – a gun
Our first actual weapon! The third person model is completely finished. This is the Splintershot, the player’s first ranged weapon, which functions similarly to a shotgun.
And the viewmodel is in the works:
New Lighting & Day/Night Changes
One thing that has been tricky in regards to the day night cycle is getting global lighting that looks pretty, and works with baked lightmaps. The first iteration of the DNC involved rotating a directional light in circles in order to simulate the sun moving around the world. This looked alright, but I had some issues with it. It became difficult to predict what certain parts of the level would look like, and it was hard to simulate things like the sun setting without the level getting so dark it basically just looked like night.
Using global illumination was a much better solution, as the tint that it applied to the entire level looked a lot better than the directional light. It presented another issue, however. The GI needed to be changed dynamically as time passed, but this wouldn’t work with baked lightmaps. It took some work, but the game now updates the precompiled lightmaps in realtime (which sounds stupid), but actually has very little overhead, and looks just as good as dynamic lightmaps.
The DNC has also been expanded to add some effects that only occur at certain times.
The changes to the lighting meant updating most of the game’s shaders to be more streamlined. One thing that became easier to do with the changes was design a illusory wall.
This also resulted in some other neat effects, like transparent water:
That’s it for now. Next time I’ll be showing off the updated grappling hook, some multiplayer mechanics, the finished splintershot, and carriable objects.