Alright, I know I’ve been quiet for a while, but that’s only because I’ve been working on some rather big changes. In the last developer log I went over the new mission system and story campaign progress. While more development has been done on that front, I wanted to talk about some big changes coming to the planet map.
According to the surveys that I put out, a lot of you want additional construction and expansion opportunities on the planet map. This is something that has been on my todo list for a while. Part of the coming story/mission progression will include more points of interest, discoveries and new surface side structures.
The planet map itself is something that has been on the list of things to improve as well. The time has come and the planet map is getting a rather significant face lift.
This is still a work in progress, but the planet map now has visual height variety, proper coastlines and some new biome textures and detail objects.
The most notable change is a change in visual elevation. Planet map tiles now have varying heights. I’ve made this change both for the visual impact as well as the functional relevancy of terrain elevation for some upcoming surface side structures.
Biome textures and visual details are also being updated/overhauled. Details, in this case, represents the artwork inside a tile biome such as trees, crystals and giant mushrooms. New details are being added and most of the existing detail models are being replaced or upgraded.
Detail variation is also being worked on so that, for example, the Fungal Forest biome pulls from a few variations of giant mushroom models instead of just one to make the biome look more visually interesting.
New shader effects are being added for trees to add wind animation to leaves.
The water shader has also been improved to include transparency, new wave animations and animated shoreline waves.
A lot of work is going into updating the visual elements of the planet map. Some of these changes mean additional work to fix path finding and building placements, but development on that has been started. Stay tuned for additional developer logs covering more of the new planet map content.
Thanks for all the support and feedback. Let me know what you think of these new changes.