Dredge Developer Blog – Sprint 6
In our Developer Blog Updates we’ll talk about some of the work we’ve completed in the previous two weeks and explain our approaches. Through this you’ll get an understanding of our game development methods and tidbits on the features we’re planning for Dredge!
The Marrows are filling up with places to explore, fish to catch and mysteries to uncover…
Writing – Chapter 1
Joel swapped out his mechanical keyboard for the quill this sprint and gave us our first quest-chains, story beats and solidified our starting cast! While our game doesn’t really have chapters per-se this will represent that first 45 minutes or so of gameplay
Sometimes aliasing on assets can be distracting to the overall gameplay so this sprint we added anti-aliasing as a toggleable option in the main menu to try it out. We were worried about the performance hit on Nintendo but while FPS can occasionally jump down a few frames from the 60FPS we’ve been keeping it to, it seems unnoticable enough for us to maybe flex our hard rule and give players the option. It’s something we’ll continue to track as we add more visual complexity into the game over time.
We addressed a few bits and pieces with our boat this sprint and Alex then completely updated the model!
We also fixed an issue that was with us even in the prototype – the ability to flip your boat! No longer in Dredge, but here’s a blast from the [prototype] past:
Control / Input improvements
Tweaks and adjustments to our control system based on feedback from our playtests for our Keyboard+Mouse players:
- Shop tabs are now clickable
- “Esc” works as “back” to exit destinations and Inventory
- Inventory now closes with the same button you open it (I for Keyboard)
This system is great fun – from beautifully clear and sunny days to dark and stormy we now have a variable weather system in Dredge! Check out the possible contrasts to each day you head out fishing:
These weather effects are essentially just presets of shader values we’ve been playing around with from the start. Every X hours, our weather system rolls a dice and picks a new weather preset. It then (gradually) changes the shaders to match the cloudiness and darkness values from that preset. Eventually we’ll add more exciting things, like rain density, lightning strike frequency…you can imagine!
Art update – Equipment & Fish
We’ve replaced our dev-art with some production art for your Inventory, Storage and Shops:
Can you spot where the fish are?
Docks got some love this sprint, both with a visual makeover and a technical refactor:
- Entering “Docking” will now pull your boat to parallel against the side of the dock closest to your boat
- Colliding against the dock no longer causes hull damage
- Fixed an issue where docking action never completed while holding down the docking button
- If the particular dock has access to your storage, opening your inventory while docked while automatically open your storage as well
- New dock model:
- Also added was the light from the cabin windows which along with the dock lights turn on when it’s dark enough.
- Standing above the fog you can see this lighthouse, and home, from far away.
- Ability to auto-resolve dialog – Some text should wait for the player to dismiss it to make sure they’ve had the chance to read it, others like shopkeeper flavour text you probably want them to get on with it and not need another click to open the shop (especially after the 10th time)
Our favourite bug of this sprint:
- Lowriding boat – Nadia had a lot of fun with this bug but sadly it is no more. Depending on which direction you were going it was either pretty smooth sailing or you could get some pretty sick lift going: