Having fun with animations…well, sort of….

Ryan and I have spent the last couple of weeks dealing with thousands of animations.  We are trying to sort them out, ones that work and ones that don’t and tweak them for use in the game.

Ryan’s job has been to add some nice animations to the player controller. This is the controller that will accept input from the players to make the character move, jump, and do a variety of animations based on triggered events. The final controller will hold every animation the player character uses in the game. It is a big job and he had to test, blend, and combine many animations.  It is looking very good though, and I love the bow animations. 🙂  We also have a lot of emotes, useful to role players, as well as some specialized walks and runs. Players can use these to add “character” and moods to their own character.

My job is to work on the animations for the NPCs. In order to showcase these animations as well as our clothing options, and character customization, I am building a market area where NPCs interact with each other, wander around the market, have specific jobs to do, and model the amazing clothing.  You will see poor folks and peasants, solders, hunters, and even noble lords and ladies. Once I get that done, I will add some AI so the NPCs will actually react to each other and form relationships. Adding a player to the mix should be fun as well because the AI will also include the player.

Later next week, I start testing an amazing tool for buildings in Unity, a parametric modeler.  So far, the results from the previous testers have been nothing short of remarkable. This tool will help us to flesh out our cities and build unique buildings that suit our cultures. I am looking forward to this very much. I do not know if the beta status will preclude me from showing you my results, but soon, I will hopefully have something to share.  Modeling with this type of tool is more CAD-like that my typical modeling in Maya, so I will probably have a lot to learn. 🙂

I am also waiting on the beta for a terrain tool which I think will work well for us as well. I already have some fabulous tools, but this one may work well for creating the different biomes and landscapes, allowing us to have more detailed worlds/cities with less overhead. I have already completed a model of the the terrain for our major city, Caerleon and will be adding details to the terrain once testing starts.

Networking is going well, with the server and client reading the movement of the players. There is a little glitch that is being worked on at the moment. If my poor networking programmer didn’t have a day job, I am sure we would be further along but I guess someone has to pay the bills. 🙂

So…to wrap up the changes since I last posted, we have a player controller stocked with excellent mocap animations, a test scene full of animals, herding each other, babies following mothers, wolves chasing chickens, and animals reacting to a player in the scene. This gives us a test scene for our hunting and trapping skills, which are at the top of our list at the moment. We have a bunch of very nice clothing options, with pieces that can be mixed and matched and dyed to different colors.  We have Unity terrain of the entire Aryiure continent, from which we will take our starting areas and the city.  We have a robust claim/field/house building system for players. This can be used in our Mini-Game to allow players to stake out areas and use them for buildings or crops.  All of this can be combined with our terrain scenes.

Before we can show off the mini-game, we need to finish a few more skills (cooking, fishing, etc) and get the server working properly. 🙂 Yes, it is taking a long time..but we are grinding along.

Oh, and I have a couple of artists working on icons and so far, they are gorgeous. Hopefully I can show them off soon.  I know you like pretty pictures.

Thanks for hanging in there with us.  There are lots of amazing games out there, many of them similar to our old Adellion dreams.  So far, we have successfully kept ourselves from being distracted by them. 🙂  They have many features, and lots of money behind them…but none of them so far are exclusively for role players.  I hope, that when you are all tired of the same-old MMO, you will join us for some good old fashioned role play, where the stories are yours to tell.




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