2.6.1 Has gone live to the Evocati featuring improvements to ships, weapons, and gameplay modes as well as multiple bug/crash fixes, MegaMap for singleplayer and the long awaited Regional servers for Europe and Australia.
Forrest has been working on the hologram tech used for briefing pilots on capital ships which will be featured in Squadron 42.
Rob Reiniger has completed the shopping kiosk design document and is now discussing the timeline for implementation
The kiosk interface supports shopping for items (clothing, weapons, components, etc.) and landing pad services (refueling and repairs)
Animation Team is polishing useable animations (table leans) and creating the female versions of pre-existing animations (work zones, table leans)
Ship Animation Team has been polishing the combat speed cockpit enter and exit animations
Next the team will begin implementing new interactive cockpit start up sequences for the different cockpit types
Chris Smith and Josh Coons have been progressing with the improved Super Hornet and the Drake Cutlass Black respectively
DevOps are working towards supporting multi-region server deployment and plan to use data centers around the world to spin up more servers in North America, Europe, and Australia.
Ship Pipeline: Concept to Greybox
Luke Davis, Foundry 42 Producer, has seen the ship pipeline move from disjointed outsourcing to a more efficient template driven in-house process
Jim Martin really likes the cheat sheets they provide that helps to guide him in the creative process
Luke Davis states it's more about more about function of the design in game than making a pretty ship
Elwin Bachiller takes the concept model and rebuild it due to polycount and technology constraints while making changes along the way with some being in the white box phase
Jim Martin states that once the process begins the collaboration keeps everyone honest and the creativity productive
One of the biggest issues with concept is getting the metrics right and being in constant communication with the other disciplines to make sure everyone is happy with what they're responsible for on a given ship
In the whitebox phase a rough blockout of a ship is made and it can fly around, shoot, basically do the basic things you would expect a ship to do in order give to give an idea of the final product.
Greybox phase is where they add almost all the art geometry using a technique that is like custom normals, but without the taxing cost of it. Closer to finalized animations are also added in this phase.
More finalised animations in this phase: landing gear, ladders, cockpit canopies, etc. because they can't build the final geometry until they know how it moves
Tech Design gets more involved as it moves into greybox with the goal of making it flyable and giving the other disciplines something to work with.
They also start on more nuanced set up: hook up thrusters, properly seat guns, ensure everything is functioning
Ships are built with view to the feeling they are to invoke: sleek, clean and luxurious vs. claustrophobic and unsafe
Character can also be communicated through animations: smooth and quick movements suggest everything is okay, while jerking and scraping suggests some dilapidation
The team has improved their workflow between Art and Design so they don't have to worry about overwriting each other's work
Today's guest on Happy Hour were Lead Writer, Dave Haddock
It's possible there are alien races that haven't been discovered, but if they said there were, then they wouldn't be undiscovered. Also primitive races are protected by the UEEs Fair Chance Act in that one cannot tamper with the progress of a less technologically progressed race.
Mission givers will be diverse for 3.0 and beyond. Miles Eckhart won't be the only kind of mission giver out there, plus quest givers like Miles Eckhart may be "Good" or "Bad" depending on your reputation with them and what you're seeking so the "Good/Bad" guys won't be clearly defined always.
Missions where there's different perspectives on a same mission, I.E good/bad is still being discussed on how they would implement it for certain mission.
The stereotype Xi'An's have about humans is that they're emotional and impulsive. Xi'An's are the only non human race with defined stereotypes of the humans. The Banu love humans, but only because they love everyone that doesn't kill them.
When it comes to getting benefits from an alien race for example, they don't want players to have to know an entire language just to get a benefit, but open doors to them for opportunities that a player may not have gotten if they didn't know the culture. They want to prevent players from getting left out in the cold because of time invested, but still make it interesting for those who do invest the time to learn the cultures.
Creating large scale events ingame is something that will be looked at more in detail when it becomes relevant. They'd like to do big events, but also want to not waste dev time by creating an event that is a one time thing and then never used again, they want to be able to incorporate things in such a way that they can use them again, but be impactful when used a certain way.