Improvements all around!

Mar 312014

Hello everyone and welcome to this new Ghost of a Tale update!

Development is progressing at a very brisk pace. Which is in part why there hasn’t been any update since the last time. As you all know I’m very hard at work on multiple aspects of the game and I always prefer ironing out new features before mentioning them publicly.

To start, here’s a new picture for you:

Tilo at a wooden door

And here is a summary of things that are either new or improved (in no particular order):

  •  AI: I’ve implemented a new detection system for the enemies. Before it was a binary system which wasn’t entirely satisfying: you were either detected (and attacked right away) or you were not. The new detection system is much more organic and takes into account the player’s position, distance, speed, stance and whether you are hiding or not. There’s also a visual feedback icon on the enemy to let you know his level of suspicion (a little like in the Assassin’s Creed games). So now the whole thing is much more skill-based: it’s about how you balance the act of reaching a certain location without getting detected. Bottom line: it’s more fun!
  • Music: A while ago Jeremiah composed an excellent “combat” cue (actually several) which is triggered when you get detected by an enemy and I finally got around integrating it to the new detection system. Needless to say it adds a tremendous amount of tension and drama to the experience.
  • Animation: I mentioned before the “awareness system” in place for the player character; I’ve now added something similar for the enemies so that when they go somewhere (eg: patrolling from A to B) they actually look where they’re going. I know it may sound trivial but for me (as an animator) it really makes a difference.
  • Story: Paul and I worked a great deal on the story. It has grown in depth and scope and we’re focused on making sure we can explore it for all its worth. We’re also working on game design and we are now at a point where we’re testing individual mechanics to make sure everything is working as it should.
  • Interface: We now have a first pass on the inventory and the song system. It feels nice being able to actually see what you picked up at last (icon and description). Still a lot of work to be done in that area but it’s starting to take shape. We also have a new dialog system in place (thanks to Tony for the support on his Dialoguer asset) which works really well.
  •  Visuals: All the game’s shaders have been converted to Physically Based Shaders using the new Shader Forge tool (thanks to Joachim for the support). What does it mean in plain English? Surfaces now look much more realistic in the way they react to lighting: stone, metal and wood actually “feel” like distinct materials.

And of course in addition to the fine people I just mentioned let me thank again Stephane, David and Cyrille for their ongoing help in this mighty endeavor.

The next update I’ll post will focus more on story and the main character… 😉


  15 Responses to “Improvements all around!”

  1. L’image est absolument magnifique. Bravo pour le travail effectué et bon courage pour la suite!

  2. Sounds good. I like the AI and Animation additions. It’s very inspiring. I am excited to experience the adventure that lies ahead of us 🙂

  3. The incredible detail on the walls is simply amazing!

    It’s also great to hear about all the other advancements being made in the game. Can’t wait to see new videos of these animations! 🙂

  4. I’m a bit skeptic about that detection system ala assassins creed and would prefer one like in the Gothic series but nevertheless I’m excited to see this final game one day 🙂 thanks seith!

  5. Magnifique. Je me disais justement que ça faisait longtemps qu’on n’avait pas eu de nouvelles. Bon courage pour la suite, et je suis impatient de voir d’autres screenshots 🙂

  6. This all sounds absolutely awesome! Can’t wait for this game!

  7. Super d’avoir des news du développement.
    J’ai eu l’occasion de travailler sur un prototype de jeu en tant que graphiste/rigger/animateur et j’ai pu entrevoir le travail que ça réclame par rapport à ce que je fais habituellement et en ce moment (vfx, animation). C’est vraiment très très dur de faire un jeu, impossible de s’en sortir avec des hacks à la con au plan… et la quantité de choses à faire est proprement hallucinante plus les spécificités “étranges” de la discipline dans la façon de gérer les anims selon ce que tu laisses ou pas faire au moteur. Déjà qu’un boulot n’est jamais terminé en animation, je trouve que c’est encore pire à ce niveau sur un jeu. Always tweaking. Bonne continuation et bon courage, les visuels sont enthousisamants.

    • Merci! Oui c’est interessant de voir ce qui peut etre procedural au niveau anim (les look IK par exemple) et ce qui doit obligatoirement etre anime a la main…

  8. Very excited to hear about this! I can’t wait for the full game! The little details won’t be lost to us, and hearing about how much care you put into this game makes me anticipate playing it all the more!

  9. This will be the bast indy game of the year for sure!!

  10. […] his upcoming title that will be powered by the Unity Engine, Ghost of a Tale. In addition, Seith revealed some new information about the game’s AI routines, animations and […]

  11. Looks like a still from some offline-rendered animation o_o

    Could you post a PBS on/off comparison by using that same screenshot?


  12. So when are you switching to Unreal Engine 4? 😉

  13. yay~ update~ now i can change my desktop wallpaper!! xD

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