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The Errand - DevBlog #5

At this stage of the Errand's development, I have started focusing on in game UI, sound, and particles. I will break down each section and talk about some of the progress that I have made.


Wind Zones


Wind zones are places in the game level where wind will blow your torch out if you stay in them for too long. They are loud and upon stepping into a wind zone, your vision will become slightly bleary and your torch will be blown all over the place. The player must either seek shelter from wind zones, or try to find a way around them to continue up the mountain.


I created the lovely stylized wind particle using a ribbon emitter that trails behind velocity modulated points. The effect is a wispy cartoonish wind that fits the general art direction of the game.

I also included another particle system that applies for the effect of general ambient wind, that is not an obstacle to be avoided. The effect is more like wind carrying snow off of trees. The effect adds a lot to the general believability of the environment.



Northern Lights Day/Night Cycle

One thing that I really wanted to accomplish with this game environment art, is an effective shift from late afternoon into a beautiful aurora borealis night time. I found that this was actually pretty tricky to pull off believably for three reasons. First, The Auroras needed to fade in over time and at the right time. Secondly, the drastic shift in lighting would also require an animated ambient light to fill the scene with the correct hues of the northern lights as time passes. Finally, I couldn't use just a basic day night cycle because I intended to have the cycle stop at the night time section and not progress onward. Overall through troubleshooting some different methods, I got to a place with the day/night cycle that I am relatively satisfied with.



UI Cues

Another feature I added this week was the addition of UI story cues that pop up and provide text to the player. The system uses animated widgets in UE4 to stylishly fade in and out while lightly obscuring the background for polish and legibility.




Overall this was another successful week in development and I have been having a lot of fun working on this project. I have a lot more components in place that I can assemble to essentially get a working build of the game since the basics of the mechanics are now functional. Stay tuned.

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