News

Onward, to Albion: SUPERCLUSTER

By Haley Uyrus, December 6, 2017 · Sunless Skies

Now that the new proc gen system is accessible in Early Access via branch, the team has been busy QAing and bug fixing the Prospects and Bargains system, which is due into the game before the end of the year. Alongside that, Art, Content and Tech have continued their work on various tasks for our other regions like Albion and Eleutheria.

ART

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Example of upcoming Terror border visual effect

Besides creating the art for the Albion port, the Most Serene Mausoleum, Tobias has been working on visualisations of Terror that we’re hoping to add to the game soon. These Terror visualisations are based on your feedback that there aren’t enough cues that Terror is increasing.

There will now be five different visual stages to show the Terror condition: neutral, losing terror, gaining terror, gaining a lot of terror, and gaining-a-hell-of-a-lot-of-Terror-oh-my-god-I’m-going-to-die.

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Alongside this solution for Terror feedback, we’ve also added a new HUD in the proc gen branch available to players. The new HUD aims to clarify Terror level as well as other conditions and stats the player will want a keen awareness of as they play.

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CONTENT

Many of our writers and freelancers are forging ahead on Albion ports and content. James has been busy writing the content for one of our Legendary Wrecks: the Boatman, while Chris has spent time working on the ever mysterious Well of the Wolf.

As most of our freelancers such as Harry Tuffs and Richard Cobbett have been finishing up their Eleutheria ports. Similarly, James have been creating the content for the Eleutheria port of Pan, which was discussed in our FBG Podcast.

Olivia has also written the Blemmigan content for Sunless Skies, so expect upcoming fungal frivolity!

 

GAMEPLAY & DESIGN

Early Access means we’re creating Sunless Skies in open development. As such, players can witness bug report and fixes, submit feedback and see which changes we make to the game as development continues. With this comes occasional cuts to features or content.

One of the first cuts we can discuss here is a cut to how Isambard Line functions. In a previous update, we described that the Isambard Line would have the possibility of being fixed by the player and used as a fast travel system within the Reach. Depending on whether the player fixed the line or left it in disrepair would please either the Stovepipes or the Tacketies.

 

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Due to recent adjustments to the Content and Tech schedules as well as the technical design behind this type of system, this aspect of the feature has had to be cut. This cut will allow the team to complete other, more essential gameplay features.

During the initial segment design meetings, Content fell in love with the idea of the line being an eerie example of a grand Victorian folly, never completed. So instead of deciding whether to fix the line or not, players will be able to discover the Isambard Line within the Reach, and play out a particular story that wouldn’t be able to be told if the line weren’t in disrepair. A story that will involve a unique Officer.

Barry has been implementing changes to ensure the game performance is optimised, so that ports like Lustrum won’t cause any visual performance issues. Now that the new proc gen system is available, Barry has also been busy implementing various Discoveries and Spectacles, which will add even more fullness to the world.

Meanwhile Mac has begun work on joypad controls. One of our main goals for Sunless Skies is to make it even more accessible than Sunless Sea, which means we’ll be trying to make it as easy as we can for people to map controls. With Prospects and Bargains soon to be implemented in the live-build, Mac has also been working with Lesleyann to resolve any bugs found around this system.

Lesleyann, as our Quality Analyst has also ben mental testing the proc gen build to ensure that all the missing and duplicate port bugs have been sorted.

 

AUDIO

For all audio not strictly music related, we work with the award winning Soundcuts. Moving forward we’re going to work even more collaboratively with them, which will produce some brilliant sound effects within our skies!

Also, we’re continuing to work with Maribeth on the music for each region. Recently, we’ve finished up the two main theme tracks for Albion. We’ve also finished the first draft of the Main, Terror, and Death themes, with the Victory theme coming up next!

 

 

Today Wednesday 6th December, Chris will be showcasing Prospects and Bargains, at 16:00 GMT. Tune in to the FBG Podcast and bring plenty of questions for us to answer!

As we approach the holiday season, we’ll be winding down a little as people head off towards home for family and festivities. We hope to have Paul come on for the next podcast on Friday the 5th of January to give everyone a little tour of the new proc gen system!

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