Capstone Begins Again

Little late, and technically it’s called Senior Production now, but either way in the end it is still developing Sojourn further.

Thinking back to last semester’s blog posts, especially toward the end, I felt like I was saying very little. It’s not very pretty, but I prefer the more text heavy pictures less post style. I’ll still cover what I did, but maybe I can be more clear in why we’re taking the direction we are, and what the strides I’ve taken are.

Two weeks have gone by already, so allow me to catch you up on what I’ve done so far.

First things first, week one was all about level streaming. Before level streaming, the entire level was loaded all the time, and it really slows down weaker computers. Honestly it even slowed down powerful computers. It was bad. But with level streaming, we can load and unload various bits of the levels as the player travels through them. Much more efficient.

That subsumed most of my first week. I’m also running QA this semester, so that’s always a fun time getting feedback on the game.

The second week, the one that just concluded, involved a more spread out choice of objectives. First, I made room timers for QA feedback. That allowed us to get an accurate read on how long each puzzle takes, and how long the game takes. The room timers were the major feature of the week.

Minor features of the second week were multiple, including a fix to the reticle system (buttery smooth), a bugfix to the tree in the forest painting after it gets knocked down by the cannon, a scalar shaking amount for the in-painting character’s jumps, a more viewable glowing of interactable objects, and increasing the ability to jump around on the splatter painting. A lot of feel-good changes.

It’s not important what exactly all those features are. What is important is that I was able to fix a lot of small issues that work toward a better player/designer experience.

All in all, a slow start to the semester, but we have an entire narrative AND art overhaul, so we’re deciding on that and waiting for them to be created, so programmatically, we’re mostly just creating the backend design features that make it easier for them to do their jobs.

Until next week.

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