August Development Update

Posted on Posted in Dev Blog

Hey everyone, Dondi here. Since our last larger update post resulted in legitimate feedback, I wanted to keep our devposts going where I sit down to explain what’s going on with development. The August Update is here to clean up many misconceptions that are definitely bugs or temporary placements whereas many seem to be spreading false information in regards to what our plans are, and what’s going on.

Sandbox Mode:

So, this thing is at end of the assembly line. Whether or not you agree with the fact it will be temporarily placed out of existence, that’s how it is. This results in the widest spread of feedback of gamers, casual and hardcore, skilled and unskilled, happy, and unhappy. Until progression and its intended features are put in, sandbox is respectively ignored. Once we throw it back into the mix, people can go back to a birdbath sim on their private servers. It is not intended to be balanced; just a place where you pick your dinosaurs and do whatever it is you want to do. (Also, yes I know that Acro/Utah aren’t on sandbox. We have more important things to do than update that part of sandbox. It’s gone next update. I know I’m a terrible person.)

Leg Breaking:

While a touchy subject for many about how sporadic it feels, the main concern is that the landscape of the maps they are used on are rough, and in some ways outright bad for the mechanic. The mechanic itself functions by grabbing your velocity on the Z (up/down) axis when you touch the ground from a fall, and then feeds it back to check if it’s above A (Your leg breaks), or B (You die).

Certain dinosaurs have greater capacity for falling, and others do not. The intention of this is to stop larger predators from being able to billygoat up inclines, mountains, and other parts of the landscape featured primarily in Isle V3, and allows a method of smaller creatures to escape outside of strictly hiding in dense underbrush.

The most recent update halved leg damage (30 to 15) and changed the heal amount from 1 per minute (while standing) and 2 per minute (while resting), to 2 and 4 respectively.

I feel as if this will be temporary, as a larger island should grant a larger penalty time, and the landscape itself is so finely done that there’s no coherent reason a player could misconceive whether or not they should go launching themselves down a steep slope or hill.

Stamina:

I’m sure everyone has noticed by now that stamina otherwise feels relatively infinite in comparison to where it was. This is temporary in the sense that we are moving to IsleV3 very soon, which is four times the size of Region2. It is understandably vanilla and without any massive landmarks it would be outright stupid of me to expect anyone to remember any of the hills or mountains like a level designer does. As the island fills out and navigation becomes easier with landmarks, gametrails, and other formations (natural or otherwise), stamina will be lowered to a realistic value.
To give an idea of this, stamina was increased by 10x. We will drop that down to an accurate 4x to 7x increase, depending on dinosaur.

Progression:

The first steps are in and the biggest complaint is “devs y u put this in its not complete u need moar features.” We really have two ways of doing this:

The first method is that I can have features created and minimally tested in house. The problem is, with such a small testing base in house, when it hits live I know there will be dozens if not hundreds of unforseen issues with player behavior and exploits. This will be an extreme struggle just to fix one problem without introducing two more, let alone doing this several times.

The second method is we drop the first iteration of progression on people and begin work on the features we had in mind, molded around player behavior on the evidence we have in front of us which is actual evidence of how people act in the game. The direct observations show what direction our mechanics are pushing people, intended or otherwise, and what they need in order to become more effective hunters or evasive prey. Each iteration and consequence we put forth is to minimalize the negative experiences people are running into while new features are integrated in tandem with these updates to maximize the effect of intended methods of survival gameplay.

I’m not saying you have to like it, but that’s how it is.

Steam Forum Asshattery:

The last thing I want to address is the state of Steam Discussions. The Preemptive Rage Thread contains many prime examples of how people shouldn’t act. It’s a solid example of placing all the really loud flailing individuals in one concentrated area where they can form a mob while the rest of the community functions at least somewhat coherently. Congratulations, I’m a bad dev and I’m killing my game. I guess that’s why it’s growing.

In general, trying to hold the development process hostage by threatening bad reviews is never going to work. The game isn’t dying because you’re mad that you can’t instantly pick your favorite dinosaur and is flourishing moreso now than it was before. Buying the game doesn’t entitle you to creative control and your input is invalid when you act like a jackass. From this point forward, I’ve put moderators on notice to banhammer people that can’t construct an argument and just rage. You will get no warnings and the community will move on. You will not be missed.

September Update will cover the scent/tracking system, nests, family herd/pack mechanics, dinosaur growth, skins, and perks for the three factions. See you all then.