Monday, June 4, 2012

Update: Some production screenshots and delight for the UDK version of Cyka

Screenshot 01
Can't show you the textures just yet...

More development screenshots are available on the Screenshots page, down under the "Cyka Kickstarter demo (Unity version)" section.  These some screenshots are just something to give you to look at just for now.  They are just showing the wireframe models of the Unity-developed Cyka demo and using a placeholder sky texture, as the terrain model textures and sky textures are not yet finished.

But what's cool about these pictures is that they're showing one-fourth of the total map size for the playable region for the Unity-developed Cyka demo.  To give you a sense of scale, click on screenshot 03 below, look at one of the triangle faces, and place your mouse cursor within one--that's just about the size that one character will be on the terrain.  Now imagine about 50 of similarly-sized units engaged in confrontation with 50 other similarly-sized units, and you can begin to imagine the elbow room your playing field will be in this demo.

Screenshot 03
Screenshot 03

Some of this terrain map will be what actually gets left untextured and released for free use on the Unity Asset Store.  This entire map when finished textured and animated will be in the pack of three game-ready terrain maps made available for purchase for $10, provided with many prop assets to allow people to make it look like their own terrain.  We're not afraid of selling the terrain because the terrain in the final game will look better defined than the more general-purpose terrain pack and there will be so many terrains in the official game that will pale even this large terrain size in comparison.

Also in development right now for this demo:
  • models of several types of trees, rocks and plants are being made
  • high-resolution sky texture being created and rendered from scratch in a separate 3D program
  • initial character models are being modeled (animations come next)
  • concept buildings are being conceptualized in both 2D and 3D
  • creature designs are being done in 2D at the moment
  • textures for the terrains are being done carefully (but not yet shown here)
  • game logic for both demos are being plotted out
Again, more reveals of the Unity-developed Cyka demo are coming this week.

~ ~

Progress is coming along quite well for the UDK-developed Cyka demo as well.  So far, we've tried some tests of terrain as both generated using the heightmap terrain editor and as imported modeled terrain meshes, to weight out their advantages and disadvantages for us (some as memory usage, environment destructibility, ease of assembly, etc.), and we're definitely going with the terrain editor option.

UDK makes it pretty easy to create an impressive terrain quite quickly, so the test to be sure about our approach was worth the time.  Though, UDK is such a robust engine with tons of amazing features at your disposal, some obvious and some not-so-obvious, and personally, it's still quite the learning experience for me as the chief developer (currently the sole developer, at the moment).  I am proficient in using Unity, which I've been using for years, but UDK I'm rather new at--I've only adopted it this year--and so I want to be totally up to speed with UDK when I finally hire my team of developers.  Though, it's time-consuming learning while you utilize.

It's been worth taking the extra time to learn how to best utilize the engine--and thanks to a wealth of learning resources, that's been happening with no problem.  I'm mastering this engine quickly, and I can see how even more amazing this version of Cyka is going to be.  The original Unity-developed version will already be loads of fun (cross-platform-style), but this UDK-developed version of Cyka will be very amazing to experience on Steam.  The contrast between them will be one I think gamers will thoroughly enjoy.  (Of course, Kickstarter supporters who pledge at the $50 level will get both the Unity-developed standard Cyka (four copies of this version, in fact) and the UDK-developed Cyka: Steamed Edition.)

I can't wait to show you the work I've been working on so far!  Since I'm working on more than one thing at a time, I'm working non-linearly, going between different aspects and working on them a bit at a time, so that's why I don't want to show them off just yet.  But I'm sharing the untextured examples of my Unity work just to whet your appetite a bit.

- Brian

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