The quick brown fox …

jumps over the lazy dog.

Do you remember that text? The German version is ‘Franz jagt im komplett verwahrlosten Taxi quer durch Bayern‘. It contains all major letters of the alphabet. But what has it to do with this game?

Well, I used the text to document how much text fits to a book page.

Yes, since I wanted to create parchment a character can buy to build something like a signpost I thought I should build a book / parchment with any text first. The construction certificate will be deducted from this later. And so we have books available now. The first became the story of Comunculus immediately followed by The Singing Well, I did years ago for another game. And there are more fairy tales written down by the Calida Sisters already.

Minor extensions

Where Am I?

  • The detection of the current position was moved to prepared area information. Now the displayed name can be different from the program name of an area. Therefor the system is ready to use user created names.

Something Written

  • There were some trigger items necessary, so I designed different parchments and pells.

Make a book readable

  • It would be a lot of work designing the pages for books without a proper tool. So I made this tool.

Minor fixes:

  • LookAt issue if both positions are identically. => look in jump direction
  • Sending character information to clients where character doesn’t exist (character selection). => deactivate
  • See unused areas hovering in the air. => Hide areas in client only.
  • Dislocated elements (visible model not at element position) => move position to visible model
  • Tooltip has fix position; often behind mouse => tooltip attached to mouse below

What Comes Next?

  • Different walking speed on different ground
  • Examine ambient mana and whether one can build anything at a given location
  • Place a signpost

Go Shopping and Going Under

Really, I was able to do more than one point from my list of possibilities.

Market

There is now a small market with some tents and trade musters. There are also 4 traders who pull the money out of people's pockets.

It was necessary to create some furniture and display some item samples.

Feel free to get the name references and the items the trader buy and sell:

  • Eliza Flowers (female elf)
  • Tim Beer (male dwarf)
  • Lilo Stitch (female orc)
  • Oliver Hammerfall (male humans)
My First Dungeon

There is now a first mine (Mine01). The player will find a name later.

One can find there the basics (coal and iron) there. The yield is rather mediocre.

It was necessary to create an entrance and a number of different veins. Since it is the first time the character can’t see the sky, I had to take care it’s always dark even at day depending on the characters night vision.

Castle on the Rocks

I searched and found some appealing rocks and applied them to castle rock. Once this rock was designed, it was possible to build a makeshift castle. We will see, what player change it into if the game one day may become alive.

Raise the Flag

Sometimes it is amazing how long it takes to solve a seemingly simple problem. On the other hand, there are apparently complicated cases that you fear for a long time and solve on the fly. Flags were one of the second cases.

Just after 2 days (learning, modeling, integrating) I already had two waving flags. I decorated the castle with it and the seamstress shows the flag too. In principle, any designs are now conceivable.

 

 Minor fixes:

The character looks after a teleport in the correct direction.

 What Comes Next?

 There is a time to go forward and a time to consolidate. I'll now consolidate the reached points.

  • Apply walking speed for water, road and rock
  • Let's grow some vegetation on rock surface and not on the terrain below
  • Character shall be able to build signposts and flags
  • Fine design of surface

Solution

Here is the solution for the name riddle:

  • Eliza Flowers: My Fair Lady – Herbs, fruits and vegetables
  • Tim Beer: “Timber!” – Raw material such as logs, branches and ore
  • Lilo Stitch: Lilo and Stitch - Clothing
  • Oliver Hammerfall - Guitarist of the band Hammerfall - Tools

Still the 3rd Day

Control the Grow

Creating herbs is not enough. Vegetation is a bunch of different plants in an area that got seeded, grows and dies. And exact that is, what I did over the last two weeks. There were a bunch of issues such as

  • counting larger plants multiple times,
  • use random in the right direction,
  • use one model for multiple plants,
  • … .

Let's say it was kind of like a kangaroo development. Always hopping between multiple issues in one session.

I think the functions are so far ready that one can plant a larger area. This means I am going to the real map next.

Client-Server

For some time (month) the separation of functionality into server and client was taken into consideration but not really tested. I always run it as server and client in one.

You know, thinking and doing right are sometimes two pairs of shoes. So a lot had to be tested and some corrected. In fact, I can't remember all of the problems that were often solved simply by switching between server and client calls. For example the calculation of change was done on the wrong side and the player wouldn’t get any.

Not everything could be done immediately, walking backwards, for example, looks questionable again.

Sad to say the tests were expensive since there was always a complete server and client build. And one cannot debug direct in the Unity c# scripts so printf debug is the only way.

Minor extensions:

Changed organization of portals and resurrection spawns

The storage has to be moved into the respective area and couldn’t be fond that easily anymore. But finally it became simpler and two rather large classes were removed.

Vegetation Reports

To keep an overview about vegetation items that easily can have dozens of parameter each a clear report about the settings was necessary.
Since the vegetation grows automatically, the result has to be reported. Otherwise you may miss if a special herb was never seeded.

 Minor fixes:

  • Random character was always a beggar.
  •  Character in character selection rotate like a fan.
  • Major buttons in character selections were way too small.

What Comes Next?

  • Introduce main map
  • Extended vegetation rules
  • More vegetation items
  • Make a new movie

Creating a Vast Land

I connected the main land map to the game. Where I had before maps with 100 m x 100 m, alone the main land map has now 2 km x 2 km.

Therefor I started with detailed design of some parts. Mainly I build the parts of the main town and shaped the island right in the main town bay.

And I tweaked the vegetation creation by drawing a partially main land vegetation map, adding trees and vegetation seed rules. Currently there are 18 vegetation items, 11 vegetation areas and 56 seed rules.

 

Testing Vegetation

A full day in Anega takes 8 hours and 15 minutes in real life.

This is the result of a vegetation test over one day with a vegetation cycle 100 times faster than planned. So herbs and trees grow and die much faster.

 Minor extensions

  • Screenshot and Webcam
    Player can take the current picture simply by a key and GM can even start a webcam capture procedure what takes every x seconds a new picture.That way I was able to make a movie about the growing vegetation as well.
  • Goto and use/pick for items is now available from context menu and stationary UI.

Minor fixes

  • Time Adaptation
    To test light settings I adapted the strange way of moving the time for test purposes. It seems a maniac has created the old solution. Sad to say it was me and I cannot follow up why I did it that strange way.
  • Correcting zero settings for all terrains.
  • White fog at night if one has night vision became dark.
  • Replacing some printf commands by the LogFile class and improve the related messages.

What Comes Next?

That’s a good question

I have a number of possibilities, each promising. In every case I’d need new models as well.

  • Build a mine and dungeon
  • Build the trader and worker district in the Main Town.
  • Create rocks and shape the Main Town castle.
  • Extend vegetation items and introduce LOD to existing items reduce load.
  • Create weapons such as daggers and maces.

We will see, what attracted me most in two weeks.

The Third Day

Herbs, Roots, Leafs and Berries

What happened on the third day? True, in addition to land and sea, God created 390,000 different plants. I am not that fast and it took me 2 weeks for 6 plants and the associated controls so I have now 8 herbs with 17 different roots, seeds, fruits and leafs. I would be finished in 2600 years already.

Although, in contrast to him, I also supplied documentation. In contrast, mankind doesn't even know how many different types of plants there are.

This is a small test with all available herbs growing in an extreme compressed time frame.

Save and Load

The vegetation, which includes all ore veins and other collecting stations for raw material, are now saved cyclically and loaded at the start.

The landscape in the development server looks really barren, without trees and plants. Because all of that will be dynamic. The GM can already plant and destroy, the prerequisites for dynamic planting are now in place.

Minor extensions

Influence of luck in gathering. More items, higher chance for special findings.

Minor fixes:

The gathering procedure was adapted in a number of points. For example, you can get more items in one cycle now (7 pieces of grain at once in 3.2s cycle) One can call it fixing or optimization.

What Comes Next?

  • Some trees and bushes
  • Vegetation control – create vegetation automatically