A Robust Update – Friday, March 24th, 2017


  We’ve finished off another busy week here at CSE full of streaming, testing, bug fixing, and general hard work. Dare I say, we completed a fairly robust amount of work. If you’d like to catch up on the week’s progress, you can catch Mark and I (Tyler) on our end of week stream HERE. As this is a User Stories week, let’s move onto all the details of our progress to Beta 1, starting with the week’s top ten-ish.

Top Tenish:

    1. Tech – Server Stability: Over last weekend, our Wyrmling server stayed up, and continued to remain stable for continued testing into the week. While successful, we’re adding in more logging to be sure this potential fix is the correct fix for the instability issues we’ve seen in previous tests. Right now, we have bots firing off 20,000 skills per hour, and logging in and out 16 times per minute, to help us not only track down issues like this, but also to stress test the ability system.


  • WIP – Tech – Updating Particle Rendering: We have a three-pronged attack in progress from George, Dave, and Bull on our updated particle system covering new shaders, editor improvements and additions, and bug fixes. All of this is geared to supporting the recent OIT changes, and puts us in a good position for re-attaching VFX to abilities using Andrew’s new tagging system, in a more performant and developer-friendly way than before.

  • WIP – Tech – Animation Tagging: In the same vein as the above item, we’ve continued to layer in VFX and SFX functionality to abilities. This is a fairly complex task, made easier using Andrew’s tagging system. Don’t be surprised if, for example, a melee sword strike fires off a couple of errant fireballs as we hook things up during testing!

  • WIP – Tech – Banes and Boons UI: We dropped the first pass of the Banes and Boons system into character creation this week. While Ben continues to chop away at adding in more Banes and Boons, we’re looking for feedback on the UI layout at this time, before we get into a style pass.

  • WIP – Tech – Alloy Crafting: Christina, Mark, and Ben, continue to keep up a good pace on the crafting system. This week, Christina has been working on the code for a recipe system for alloy crafting. Additionally, all items, even those assigned at character creation, contain a history of what alloy, and consequently, what substances, it was built from. We’ve also done the initial work on a generic gating system to define what players can and cannot make based on various factors, such as Realm. This will eventually be used for multiple purposes, but right now we use it to define whether you can use a particular alloy recipe or take from a resource node. This way, only Vikings could make “Viking Steel,” as a hypothetical example.

  • WIP – Tech – Player Respawning: With building permissions updated, we can revisit how players spawn when they die. After death, we want players to have the option to respawn at the closest friendly building plot.

  • WIP- Tech – Ability Cooldowns: Post re-abilitation, we’re bringing back the “cooldown” messaging to the UI layer for abilities. We’ve also made some updates from the previous implementation to eliminate possible ways to cheat, as well as to improve network performance.

  • Tech – Zone Transitions using FastEntityReader: A long-gestating and complicated task, the FastEntityReader allows us to send entity data (players, projectiles, dropped items, resource nodes, and more) across zones much faster. We’ve added this in for testing in the current build as you transition between zones.

  • Art – Environment: The art assets created for our first biomes allowed us to test not only several parts of our engine, like the terrain editor and renderer, but also to define the detail level of our art assets when supporting large battles. Now that we have a better understanding of the level of detail in our art, we can push forward with more variation and less risk of re-work in the future. This week, we completed a new set of pine trees, with another set in progress. These are intended to flesh out the original biome, which, believe it or not, only uses one pine tree type. Time allowing, we’ll continue down this route. Hopefully, during Beta 1, each biome will have had an upgrade in variation to its original implementation.

  • Art – Environment: Continuing the goal of fleshing out the environments, Dionne completed a material pass on the ruins of three statue pieces this week. Two for our forest, and two for the beaches.

  • Art – Concept Siege engines: Michelle completed some additional work on Realm variations of siege equipment for Beta 1 this week. You can catch these images in this week’s update. If you would like to see some of this work as it was done, you can catch her stream HERE.

  • WIP – Art – Weapons: Now that we are seeing players running around with weapons in hand and using the correct animations, we’re spending some time auditing weapon sizes. We’re balancing realism vs. a fantasy setting while also trying to maintain good visual readability. Last week, we may have scaled most of our weapons up a little too big, which can be seen in our current build. We’re currently re-auditing these sizes to try and find a good balance. Feel free to let us know what you think as we make adjustments.

  • WIP – Art – Animation: We’ve made some bug fixes and improvements to existing assets, with more to come. Characters should now properly play the correct lower body travel animations when in combat. We’ve also been doing a bit of R&D, intending to try out some improvements to the system next week. As a quick reminder, all combat animations will seem to play faster than expected as we test out new ways of conveying timing.


As you can see based on previous updates, we’ve been busy putting together lots of new features while adding more functionality to the existing ones to move from making an engine, to making a game. For the more extensive tracking of progress over the last two weeks we move to our user stories. If you’re looking for more details, here’s the place. All of this is represented on our website HERE. If there’s something you’re particularly interested in, you can search our cards to find the info you’re after.

  For this two week period, we have 18 pre-existing cards with 58 completes, which continues solid progress based on our last several user story updates.

As a Backer, I’d like to be able to be able to play an Archer.
Manual aiming revisit post re-ab – Complete
Smooth out targeting camera’s tracking of the hit position. – Complete
Switch to modal cursor tracking. – Complete
Add spatial query to arrows. – Complete
Snap view yaw to the aiming yaw . – Complete
Server-driven auto-advancement when not aiming. – Complete

As a Backer, I’d like to play in new biomes that change according to Realm ownership. – Biome 01
Additional pine tree variation set. – Complete

As a Backer, I’d like to find unique environment props, or unique locations, that add flavor to the environment while I’m exploring the Biomes.
Ruined statue environment accent v3 – mats – Complete
Ruined statue environment accent v4 – mats – Complete
Ruined statue environment accent v5 – mats – Complete
Ruined statue environment accent v6 – mats – Complete

As a Backer, I’d like to know about smaller changes that don’t have their own user story.
Wait for building plots to finish before making server available. – Complete
Update and add variants of CSE_WARN message. – Complete
GroupServer, API, and Game server setup use read-only StateProvider and Handlers. – Complete
Create DefRef, a method for looking up a reference to a piece of data. – Complete
Update CSE store styling – Mockup. – Complete

As a Backer, I want to be able to own a plot of land and build within it. – First Pass
Add the ability to specify block type by ID for building commands. – Complete
Support permissions for groups and guilds. – Complete

As a Developer and Backer, I’d like to see improvements in lighting and rendering.
Change particle OIT blending to post multiplied. – Complete

As a Backer in Beta 1, I’d like to play as a Crafter with basic gathering and crafting mechanics for testing.
Check inventory limits before collecting items from a completed Vox job. – Complete
Add factionBonus fields, new resistances, min/max quality, unitmass, and tags to designer data sheet – Complete
Update Vox functionality to support new substance code: Grind, purify, refine, shape, and make. – Complete
Resource Nodes:
Optimizing Resource Node network communication to only send over the list of possible resource IDs and the index of the current one. – Complete

As a Backer in Beta 1, I’d like to have a selection of character emotes to use.
Update emotes with skirt animations. – Complete
Update emotes with cape animation. – Complete
Non gender/race specific – Kneel. – Complete
Improve 2-handed spear attack to better convey high, mid, low, end points. – Complete

As a Developer, I’d like to have a selection of weapons that visually represent each Realm’s identity. – Arthurians
Second pass – weapons scale audit. – Complete
Spear v2: Complete. – Complete
Polearm v2: Additional material work. – Complete

As a Developer, I’d like the Camelot Unchained ability system to fully support the design scope of the game for B1.
Revisit cooldown post re-abilitation. – Complete

As a Developer, I’d like to prototype various combat animations to support future system improvements during Beta.
Upper body two-handed hammer crushing attack prototype:
Two-handed hammer – Skirt and cloak secondary animation improvements. – Complete
Two-handed hammer – Update torso to better blend to lower body – based on improvements to tech. – Complete
Two-handed hammer upper body combat locomotion. – Complete
Update two-handed hammer animations to use updated skeleton. – Complete
Two-handed greatsword animations:
Upper body combat locomotion. – Complete
2-Handed Axe Animations:
Offensive attack 01 – Slash high. – Complete
Offensive attack 02 – Slash mid. – Complete
Offensive attack 03 – Slash low. – Complete
Alternative recover and prep phases for longer ability duration. – Complete
Greataxe upper body combat locomotion. – Complete

Audits and improvements to pre-existing assets:
Empty-handed combat locomotion. – Complete
Improve two-handed staff combat idle. – Complete

As a Backer, I want to seamlessly move between islands and zones without being aware that I’m moving between different game servers.
Physics Subzones:
When changing zones on the client, avoid disconnecting from the destination zone. – Complete

Allow client to connect to multiple game servers automatically:
Use world time to determine which server owns an Entity. – Complete

Use Presence server to spawn players:
Store buffer until we spawn the player. – Complete

As a Developer, I’d like to pull the physics server out to its own process for improved network performance.
Read build vars from config file on physics server. – Complete

As a Backer, I want an animation system that blends multiple animations together, and allows for immersive and fun combat.
Added ClipTagSement members to ClientSoundEffect and ClientParticleEffect/Def. – Complete
Add startSeg and endSeg properties, so all types of effects can be synchronized with ClientSkillAnimations. – Complete
Added IsStarted/IsRunning/IsStopped to Effect. – Complete
Add PendingEffects to ClipPlayer. – Complete
Use proper animset from choosing walk animations. – Complete
Added ClientSkillHit to ClientSkillEffect. – Complete
Added BoneAliasTagUtility and BoneAliasTags.csv so tags can be added to BoneAlias enum. – Complete
AnimModel selects the first matching BoneAlias when running a ParticleEffect. – Complete
Don’t stretch prehit and posthit segments of animation clips. – Complete

As a Backer in Beta 1, I’d like to use a siege weapon.
Second pass: Realm-specific siege weapon concept art. – Complete
First pass scorpion silhouette concept art. – Complete

For those of you ready for some art from the week’s work, let’s start off with siege engine concept art as a continuation from last week’s update. First off, for comparison, we have the Arthurian siege engine.

This week Michelle created a variation for, first, the TDD.

And here we have the Viking variation.

As we’ve said, we’re working to make the best of our time, and plan to get in these realm variations for B1. Next up, we have several new statues, or ruins, you may find in the world of CU.

And here’s a shot of the last two, within one of our forests.

To finish things up, let’s head over to our characters who continue to get love from animation, allowing us finally see them, weapons in hand, ready for combat. Here we have a female Tuatha in her medium armor, one-handed axe and mace in hand!

That wraps up the week here at CSE. Stay tuned for our continued hard work and progress as we head to Beta 1. If you’re a new Backer, welcome aboard! We look forward to catching you on our live streams or on our forums. For those of you who been with us since the beginning, we’re looking forward to meeting you on the battlefield.

Have a great weekend all!

– t and b