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Weekly Journal - Survey time! Crafting Menu screen.

Hi everyone,  

This week we have continued work on our quest system changes, and we wanted to give you an update about when you can expect our next couple of updates. However, before we begin, we would like to ask for your help! We would like your feedback on something we’ve been working on: the upgraded crafting screen menu! Sarah talks more about this in her update, but if you want to give us feedback, please take this survey and answer the questions within. It is very helpful to us, so feel free to leave your feedback in the comment section as well!

Sam  

Since we released We Happy Few on 26 July, we have published two major updates: 

These were both quality of life updates to address community feedback, implement some new content, change balance, fix a few bugs, etc. The question is: what’s coming next? We have two things to do: fix and polish our existing content, and continue creating new content. Both are important, and both are being worked on currently. However, as the old content needs to be revamped (see Adam’s post below), it’s important that we do this revamp before the new content comes, so that new content isn’t plagued by the same issues. This revamp is taking a bit longer than expected, so we want to let you know when you can expect to see the next changes to the game. 

So, the roadmap currently includes two updates in the next 2 months: 

  • First week of November: Polish 
  • First week (ish) of December: Village 2 

The “Polish” update (we’ll come up with a better name) will completely rework our encounter systems. Literally everything in-game is being redone, using the new quest, conversation and puppet systems. We will also have a few new surprises, but we want to keep those as a secret until they’re ready. This update will effectively “master” the current content in-game, and we are hoping there will be far fewer progression blockers or save game bugs at this point. 

The “Village 2” update will be the first time that we add a large amount of new content to the game. Oddly enough, this will be the second Village island, which will be the harder version of the Village island that is currently in game. It will contain a bunch of new quests, new NPCs and improvements overall to Village content, along with general improvements to the game. 

That’s the current plan! We are, of course, working on the story in the background. If you guys have any questions or comments about this, please let us know in the comments.

Design Team  

Adam  

Hello all. We hear you about Faraday’s encounter! I’ve been on it for the past couple of days, and I have a few more days to go (hopefully less). It is my priority to make sure this encounter does not break no matter where you save/load, or if you just plain kill everybody or run away.  

To illustrate what we are doing with the new quest system, I wanted to give you another before/after of what this encounter looks like “under the hood”. Here is the House of the Inventor as it was two weeks ago:  

And here it is part way through the refactor into the new system:  

As you can see, the new quest system has dramatically simplified the work we level designers need to do, and there are far fewer parts where the scripting can break.  However, it’s not done yet, so please bear with me though as it is a very complicated piece of script!

Vince  

Hi! Pretty much the same for me and Mike, we are just moving all encounter script logic to the new quest system to squash all those nasty quest breaking bugs, and we are nearly done! We should be able to add a nice layer of polish to all encounters with the new conversation animations the animators provided us with and move on to new stuff next week!

Art Team  

Sarah  

Hello, Chickadees! I spent the better part of my week hiding in the dark, pumped with drugs, and covered in blankets with a particularly nasty bout of the plague. Despite practically cheating death, I did have time to work on the UI some more, and apply some of Morgan's wonderful feedback, as well as input from both Guillaume and David. I'm very excited to finally share what will hopefully be the new Crafting Menu screen! For those interested in getting their hands dirty, we'd really appreciate YOUR feedback, too! We have a little test for you, and remember that any and all feedback is very much valued and appreciated. Thanks, and happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

Marc-André  

These past two weeks, I've been focusing intensely on asset creation, principally for use in the Village houses. I've been creating:  

  • Modular air ducts systems (clean and dirty versions) for use throughout the underground levels and special locations  
  • 60s inspired wall dividers and credenzas (two variants; one storage and one for record player) 
  • Mid-century and 60s inspired ceiling and table lamps 
  • Lava lamps :smile: (And yes, before you ask, they will be animated. Once I get some good results) 
  • Stars wall decoration 
  • Wall radiators (clean and dirty version) (painted and metal versions) for use pretty much everywhere in the game 
  • Mid century inspired living room chair 
  • Kitchen dinner trays 

The following assets are also currently in the works (but not completed yet): 

  • New drawers furniture variant 
  • Vanity 
  • Tiki/mini bar with various decorations, such as martini and sherry glasses 
  • Coffee table variants 

Next week I will be focusing on three main things: 

  • Assets involving clothes, such as beds and towels 
  • Small items such as shampoo, soap, toothbrush, flower vase, etc. 
  • Layout and lighting - finishing the first pass - for all four current Village houses

Emmanuel  

What is 60s scifi without blinking machines? I found the perfect moment to finally introduce this fine modular computer (blinking machines) set for everyone's enjoyment.

Animation Team  

Rémi  

Hey everyone! This week was a very fun week, I got to play with corpses, A LOT! This might sound strange, but let me explain. Basically, since playing with ragdolls has been quite popular since the very beginning of the game, we decided to improve the system a bit and create animations! So we created a “Pickup Body” animation, a “Drop Body” animation and the beloved “Throw Body” animation.

Even if it looks like simple and short animations, I had to make a lot of iterations and work closely with our programmer Marc to make the integration. We wanted something quick, that wouldn’t freeze the player waiting for the animation to finish and the ability to use the same animations for all the characters. In order for that to happen, I needed to avoid “visible” contacts, since all the characters don’t necessarily have the same proportions. So in the final animations, I always make sure that the hand is hidden behind the body of the NPCs, which allows us to cheat and create the illusion of contact.

Then we also needed to be able to grab the corpses from any angle at any height. That was another constraint that I had to keep in mind. It would be weird if you were to grab a corpse on a bed and the player character leans to the ground to pick it up. The solution was to make the animations in a standing position and have very few ups and downs. That way, the animations will work with any angle of the player’s aim. In this case, simpler was better.

And finally, the more technical part was to make the switch from animation to ragdoll. This part is mostly handled in code, but we still needed to set the timing of when the corpse should switch based on the animations.  

As for the rest of the week, I made some custom animations for certain encounters. A “Use Computer” animation, Pipe Valve interactions (Left and Right) and a “Panic Startle” animation. Have a good weekend!  

J.R.  

Hi guys! In the last couple of weeks we began improving realization for some of our encounters (as you may have read from Vincent's cryptic update last week). We started this a little while back, working on the foundations of this new conversation system. Now everything is in place for us to become masters of puppets and make cool animations for our chatty Wellies!  

To make a simple recap, we animators have worked on different aspects such as facial animations that are generated from audio files, as well as various talking animations that range in emotions and intensity. Once that was done, Marc and Matt developed some very efficient tools to help us use those and make "animation chains"--a mix of animations that we can chop up and blend with each other--to go with the dialogue.

Without getting too technical too soon, let me just show you a little bit of what Remi, Vincent and myself have been doing with this so far. It is a work in progress - we need to fix some obvious issues - but it will give you a good idea of where we’re going with this. Check out the video and have a splendid week-end!

Thanks for tuning in!

Compulsion Team

 

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