I haven’t gotten a whole lot of sleep over the last few days, so bear with me. I’m sick, and that’s keeping me awake most nights. The weather here isn’t helping either, switching from absurdly hot to cold and rainy. So, this entry will be short, sweet, and to the point.
We’ve started doing some testing with height maps for the generation of a large island. To be clear, a heightmap is a 2D image that gives the elevation information for the game to generate a 3D island. The image is greyscale, and different shades mean different elevations. At first, we had some trouble because the underside of the island wasn’t generating itself properly, since the single heightmap wasn’t giving the game enough information. We found a simple solution by just using a second heightmap for the bottom if the island. The results are outstanding for our first attempts with it. There is, of course, a lot of smoothing to do, but these are the kind of islands we were wanting to see when we started this project.
Example of a heightmap:
Here’s a screenshot showing you just a small portion of that new island. You can look at the distance between the two bricktrons to get an idea of how big it is.
And that’s only a -small- valley of this particular island.
One thing this work has shown us is that our garbage collector is still woefully inadequate. The problem shows itself much more profoundly on a map of this size. Every X seconds, we’d see the game hang for half a second. This is clearly a problem for the overall immersion and flow of the game. Not to mention the playability. So we need to do a little bit more work on this before we can release this feature.
We’ve had a few interesting posts on Reddit from our backers. Here’s a castle that was made by one of these posters:
Don’t hesitate to send us your buildings and custom islands over any social media platform you desire! We love seeing what you guys build with our game!
Also, just as a quick reminder, there is a resource section over on the Castle Story community website where you can download maps created by other players. You should check them out, or upload your own custom islands! http://castlestoryonline.com/resources/
As some of you have seen on twitter, we’ve received a batch of posters this week from the kickstarter campaign. This means we’re one step closer to finally sending out all our backer rewards!.
New Mac Build under testing
Some of our players using the OSX version of the game are still unable to play. The game has been giving them a black screen whenever they launch the client, and we’ve sadly been unable to reproduce this bug in house. We believe it is related to the sound issues we’ve been having. Today, we sent a patched version of the game to our alpha testers that should fix this issue. Once we get a go from them, we’ll be pushing the release out to everyone else.
Soundtrack of the Week
Hey guys! Box here again, with more musics. Last week, we had the first album from the Protomen, a rock opera based around the Megaman series of games. Since then, I’ve had several people bring up their second album. Word is, the concept is still just as strong, but the production value is much higher. Well, we’re gonna find out! I haven’t actually listened to this one yet myself, but I figured we might as well continue the story we started! Enjoy! And, as always, thanks for reading.
Thanks for reading!
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