Welcome to the IndieDen, home of the SP Ent Team Blogs. Here you can find a growing body of writings from various members of SP Ent. on many subjects, including game dev, games, and entertainment. Our blogs are organized into Dens, for instance, the ArtDen, and, the CodeDen. There are also two special blogs: Paw Prints, which contains writings and musings about development and running an indie company from our Executive Director and Executive Producer Chris McKillip, and The Periwinkle Paw, which contains the written perspective of indie wife, Lead editor, and assistant producer, KC McKillip. Please read, comment, and enjoy.

First Dev Update of 2020
Chris McKillip
/ Categories: GameDen

First Dev Update of 2020

The pre-COVID-19 update . . . really!

The year’s well under way, and so are we. As usual we’re running a bit behind with this update, but it’s not for lack of work, it’s just the opposite. We’ve been busy and working hard on all our titles among other things, so let’s get into it and you can see for yourselves.

The first thing we’ll discuss is something we’ve been teasing and talking about since late last year, and that’s the integration of photogrammetry data into our art pipeline. We just put up an ArtDen post explaining just what photogrammetry is, so check that out here if you haven’t already. Well, it’s been buzzing for our art team as they work on checking out the new tools available to us and discover just how we can get the most out of them. There has been some cool and interesting integration going on, and while it’s still very much a work in progress, the early signs are very encouraging. We can’t wait to see just how it all comes together, but we’re seeing some nice ways in which we’re going to be able to simplify and speed up our workflow, all while building very high-end assets for Raptors’ Realm and beyond. Here’s a nice screenshot from the Raptors’ Realm prototype using some photogrammetry assets which we posted in the recent photogrammetry post. This shot uses early and unadulterated assets from the asset store without any of the refinements we are working on to make our art more cohesive and complete in future levels, so expect nicer things as we continue to work.

Raptors' Realm Prototype Screenshot for Photogrammetry

As far as Raptors’ Realm itself goes, we’re working on all fronts and making improvements to it. We’ve updated the engine again, which I’ll discuss further later, and we’ve dived back into development. We’re currently working to finish the prototype systems and get them ready for moving forward. Flight is beginning to feel very nice and smooth and hunting is getting some nice challenging functionality to it. Both these systems are core to the gameplay and are being worked on to make that core gameplay flow as smoothly and cleanly as possible while being able to provide a challenge which should infuse the game with excitement for every level of player. We’ll shortly be diving into the other few and final game play pieces, such as Quarry and Rivals, and then the prototype will be done. In anticipation of the prototype being finished, we’ve begun to make code refinements to the systems which will help us make the move to alpha development much easier. Art is making great strides toward a nice look and feel as we discussed above with the inclusion of photogrammetry data to our art assets. And last, but certainly not least, our raptor research has helped us to refine the game look and feel and is influencing the gameplay design in ways which is proving very exciting.

As for the rest of our projects, well they’re not going ignored, though Raptors’ Realm has received most of our attention. All our projects have been updated to Unreal Engine version 4.24, and our art pipeline has also gone through an upgrade, both with the latest set of our photogrammetry tools and with a new major update to Houdini version 18. Also, both K3D and InExternity got minor updates while we updated the engine, and both are poised for further development as we work on other systems for them. So, everything has gotten a bit of love, though it’s all kept us quite busy.

That’s all for now. If you’re a Dev Dawg, read on for a bit more detail about Raptors’ Realm development. If you’re not a Dev Dawg, then be sure to circle back by soon for our next post, which will likely be more raptor trivia.

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Chris McKillip

Chris McKillipChris McKillip

SP Ent. Executive Director

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Executive Director at SP Entertainment, he runs the show.

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