Firstly from the whole team, we’d like to thank the community for their support and encouragement since our last post. Particularly we’d like to shout out the dedicated Mod team, and our kind patreons. The support and passion from this community means the world to us.
So a lot has happened since the last dev blog. This dev blog is intended to help catch you up to speed on our current dev work, and our plans regarding crowdfunding.
On the point of crowdfunding, we’re making steady progress towards that end. However there are a couple of things holding us back for the moment.
We have been working on making a “What is Renown” video to better explain the concepts behind the game. This should help us gain a little more traction, and we’d like to use it as the centerpiece of the campaign, so that any newcomers can get a quick idea of the project. We’re aiming to have the video go out sometime next week.
We’ve seen a rapid but steady growth in our community recently. This is in part thanks to videos by some very kind influencers such as Ser Winter, Resonant, Shadowfrax, and several more. We’d like to say a huge thank you to these folks. We’d be remiss if we didn't also shout out the awesome effort of the community itself, helping to share the discord and videos.
This is all to say, that we’d like to do this effort justice, and not rush out our campaign before it's ready. While the discord grows, we’re happy to have the extra time for polish. The page itself is currently 80-90% complete however tiny things can cause big issues in crowdfunding so we’d like to get it right.
We’re not putting a hard date on it yet but all that said, we’re aiming to have the campaign going by roughly mid next month.
On the arts side of things Kz has been working on emblem customisation for the player. This is our first prototype for the icon/crest systems we hope to have in the final version. Currently this includes multiple types of heraldry, and tabard patterns. Kz is hoping to expand this as we progress. Likewise Kz has made some nice progress on the player customisation. This includes different custom hair models, alongside tattoos.
Alongside the campaign preparation, Kz is also making the first versions of our backer rewards. We can't say too much yet but here's a couple of photos to give folks an idea.
There has been a lot of work on many different systems, I apologise in advance for the length of this section but I've been very busy working on the game adding new features for the last few months.
The Melee combat code has more or less reached a solid foundation, there are very few issues left to fix and soon it will get a polishing and balance pass.
Recently I added Shield combat mechanics and all the animations it needed. Shields in melee combat are meant to be used by those who find it difficult to parry attacks like drags,accels and feints. They can hold their block, this causes issues in similar games because being able to hold a block removes a lot of offensive skill from the attacker. I've managed to mitigate the problem by making it so when you hold down a Shield block, you can no longer Riposte attacks, you take additional Stamina to block attacks, and your turn cap is much stronger which allows people to go around your sides, and on top of that you can be Kicked which causes you to get stunned which allows the attacker to follow up with a free attack. However, if you Parry with a Shield normally like with all other weapons, you don't get any of these downsides so playing skill-fully with the Shield is still important, as holding block puts you at a disadvantage. I've yet to implement Shield durability, which will cause your shield to break once it takes enough damage, especially from Axes. With all this I believe Shields will have enough downsides that it won't be problematic in 1v1s, but they still retain a lot of usefulness for their users in Melee.
Of course there are other reasons to have Shields, like to protect yourself from Projectiles like arrows and javelins, they can even do that while they are on your back or on your horse. They also are extremely easy to produce as it is a Survival game after all, using a Shield is the biggest boost to your defensive capabilities you can get early on in the tech tree.
There has also been a lot of work on the backend and the UI these last few weeks. The first version of the Main Menu has been made, it has most of the functionality we need. In the future with additional funds from the crowdfunding campaign that's coming soon we'll get some UI artists to go over it and make it look like a work of art rather than a work of programming. Additionally, a lot of work has gone into creating Dedicated Server Tools and Administration features. We currently have Windows and Linux Dedicated Servers ready to go and we are able to distribute them through the Steam Tools tab or SteamCMD. We want Server Admins to have access to a lot of settings so they can tailor their Servers accordingly.
We've also been doing a lot of private tests with influencers and friends of ours, you may have seen them in the VIP list on the official discord. We're very happy with how the combat plays currently, to the point where adding additional mechanics is starting to seem unnecessary. When the Alpha opens up there will definitely be a lot of revisions, but the melee combat is starting to feel like a completed experience which we find extremely encouraging.
There's been a simple Chat system implemented, it supports Local Chat, Global Chat, Clan Chat for the moment. Local Chat is localized, meaning if you are far away from the speaker it causes the text to get garbled up with symbols, obscuring the words. There has been a lot of work on Proximity Voice Chat done, I was unhappy with the implementations I've tried, so perhaps in the future we may use Vivox instead. Proximity voice chat is a key aspect of Survival games so we want to get the best possible implementation for it.
KZ and I have also been doing a lot of work done on Character Customization. For the moment the most you can do is select different Hair and Beards for your character, Tattoos on the body, Emblems on Shields and Armor, and the ability to have Painted patterns on your armors and shields. We will add more features to the customization system, such as face paints, nose rings and face customization in the future. We believe letting players tailor their characters to their liking will be a thing many people will enjoy doing.
Lastly, we've added some Damage States to Weapons. Weapons will get bloodied when killing enemies, they get scratched if their durability is damaged, and rusty if their maximum durability has been reduced from being repaired at a workbench. The same applies for Armours and Shields.
As always friends thank you very much for the ongoing support. Thanks again to our mod team, and our kind patreons. If you’d like to help the project, Please don't forget to share the discord around. For more news regarding crowdfunding, testing news and the updates on the game stayed tuned to our discord.
Images and gifs mentioned in this dev update can be found there as well.