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About nasKo

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    Speaks German in the Night, Community Manager

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  1. nasKo

    Sock it to ’em

    Fair amount to get through this week, starting off with us flagging that this week we have released two patches for the IWBUMS beta of Build 41: namely 41.26 and 41.27. We’ve spoken about the 41.26 contents a fair amount in recent blogs but the overview is that it contains: A revamp of our modding framework Saved outfits on character creation Tweaked washing A better ‘walk to’ system Better vehicle headlights Zed bandages A better colour palette for clothing Improved zed-choosing during stomp/melee combat Quality of life fixes for foraging Cutaway polish Lots more Something else that this contained was an attempt on our part to nerf ‘animation cancelling’ in combat – but it had a few side effects, especially with axes, so the next day’s 41.27 patch reverted this while we work out a more elegant solution. The next patch (likely next week, but probably reliant on work in Zac’s Zoom branch, as detailed below) is far from fully formed yet – but likely will contain Turbo’s Xmas side project, the automated military radio channel. We will also be looking into making sure that stealth is working correctly, as recent fixes might have knocked this off-balance. An updated video of Turbo’s automated radio station can also be found below: ZOOM Truth be told, some of us were ready to throw in the towel on Zac’s work on the ‘zoom’ build – the aim of which was to try to get as many lower-spec people as we could (the Intel crowd, generally) an uninterrupted non-crash game experience by removing the memory-hogging FBO and simultaneously granting all PZ players sharper visuals on character and zombie models alike. Zac had one last day on it up against seemingly unsurmountable issues before it was placed on the shelf, and all seemed lost… but then… like Indiana Jones rolling under a door and reaching back for his hat. He triumphed. As such, we currently have a test beta running for this optimized branch – although it hasn’t been updated with latest 41.26 and 41.27 content so if you do try it out PLEASE back up your saves. Details on how to test out this build can be found hiding behind these words. Feedback from this beta has been HUGELY encouraging, with some people who have had major problems running 41 reporting far, far less crashes – and others liking the crisper visuals too. This said, there are still some kinks to be worked out of it: a recurring error causing framerate issues, white square zed bodies, nights that are too bright, a blurry UI and oddly coloured cars and weapons on zoom out. All annoyances, rather than the huge hurdles that Zac scaled on that fateful Friday last week – so fingers crossed it can enter the main beta soon. Multiplayer Anims As mentioned last week this year we’re delighted to have TEA/Bitbaboon’s MarkR available again to help with the great big multiplayer hook-up. We’ve had a lot of chat this week about where we are, what’s still to do, and where we want to get to – which is basically as a high a bar as his talent and experience can take us. The following, then, are what you’ll hopefully be hearing a lot about in future blogs: Dead reckoning: Having a synchronised clock on server/client instead of using ping round-trip times, and using client prediction and interpolation to move the characters on the clients. This will allow the animation system to take that movement and apply appropriate animation onto it that will avoid most (tho likely not all) foot sliding. The dead reckoning will make the character movement in MP a ton more realistic and solid than it currently is, and will hopefully improve/remove the frequent rubber-banding issues PZ often faces. It might sound a lot, but a lot of the groundwork for this has already been done in existing work and the way that the animation system in 41 has been rebuilt to prepare for it. Zombie Clients: Not ‘our’ kind of zombies – but an actual coding term! With this we will be working out ways to simulate high amounts of players on a server: moving around and doing simulated gameplay actions so as to stage all the actions of a busy server. This will then allow us to debug current issues with server lagging due to high player counts. We’re setting ourselves a high bar with the player count – though we’re superstitious enough to not tell you all what it is. Horde traffic optimization: Also on the menu are clusters and islands – these are ways of reorganizing horde data to vastly minimize the amount of traffic sent to update zombie positions, hopefully with little visual or mechanical detrimental effect to the online experience. We’ve also been discussing splitting the horde into the zombies most relevant to different players to augment how they are synchronised to each client which, along with dead reckoning should drastically reduce those famous moments when you’ve all been bitten by a laggy/invisible/distant zombie. In short though: we’ve got big plans for all this stuff, but we want to get it right so everyone has the best experience possible AND so it’s ‘done and stable’ for the entire future of PZ. MP functionality for the anims build won’t suddenly be back next week, but we will keep you updated in the blogs – and when it does return it will have had insight and coding from some very talented people we’ve brought in especially for it, and will have been worth the wait. This week’s ‘oof, right in the kisser’ from Airpex. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!
  2. You're right, it isn't but it could be that the "hiding behind fence" mechanic basically increases the chance of being spotted if the character is bloody. So no smelling mechanic itself, but that's what the intention behind it would have been, if that makes sense?
  3. From PBL's stream we did find that zombies see a player that's crouching behind a fence. RJ saw it and is gonna check out the code tomorrow to see if it could have been a case of the zombies smelling the player. If so, I'd personally say the smell range would feel a bit high in that case. I hope we didn't come across as brushing this away, by the way. It was just that the footage we've been shown in this thread didn't contain any sneaking and even if Koester's video did, I don't think I would agree that zombies wouldn't notice a person crouching at that distance. After that clip, the character also hops a fence and draws attention from zombies. That's also something that would not have happened prior to the fix but absolutely should happen in my opinion. Those weren't far away at all. Regarding sneaking itself, we'll also take a look at that, as it most certainly was balanced around the fact that zombies couldn't actually see you when you were more than 10 tiles away. Which was not intentional. Good chance sneaking actually needs a boost in its effectiveness now.
  4. My picture was from debug mode, where I tried to specifically test the detection range of zombies. To the video: The first zombie was already walking (they do that to relocate). You were in line of sight so he noticed you. Edit: Going frame by frame it might not have been already walking but definitely had line of sight. The second zombie (behind the first) noticed too, because you were in LOS. He turns towards you by playing the slow turn animation. This doesn't look like something that shouldn't happen to me, personally. I'd kind of expect the first zombie to see me 100%. The second one behind it definitely isn't out of the ordinary. Especially considering there was no sneaking involved. The character just waltzed out in brought daylight and the zombies that had LOS reacted. I don't see them all reacting, just the ones that would make sense to me (LOS). Entirely possible there's something to balance here, but I'm not convinced that video shows something that shouldn't happen.
  5. - Fixed zombies farther away than 10 squares having a negative chance to spot the player. This was the bug that was fixed. Do you feel this might be a case of you simply not being used to zombies actually noticing you when they should? I'm walking from one side of the street to the other and they still don't notice me. This is just one of many tests to see when zombies start to notice me simply walking around. So far I haven't seen zombies notice anything they shouldn't. Level 10 sneaking is not a guarantee that a zombie will not see you.
  6. Personal opinion here, but from my personal plays I don't see how a player character who is in view of a zombie basically across the street *wouldn't* catch the zombies attention? Sneaking and lightfooted has no impact on their ability to *see* you?
  7. Known and fixed in upcoming version, thanks! For future bug reports, please check if it has been reported before via the search function.
  8. nasKo

    2020 vision

    Hey all, first week properly back this week – so a few things to tell. The next IWBUMS beta patch should be rolling out early next week and some new details of it can be found below. Over the 2.5ish months we’ve had the public testing the Animations beta some of our primary aims have been a) to ensure that the harder difficulty is 100% fair in terms of gameplay, and b) to try to get as many lower-spec people as we can with an uninterrupted non-crash game experience via Zac’s work on what we call the ‘zoom’ build – which in effect gives us higher res models via the removal the memory-hogging FBO. Clearly the c) lurking nearby all this, however, is getting MP functional again. The current state of MP is that servers can be created just as before, Yuri’s new server-side save system has been implemented (though not tested with a heavy-load), Steve’s optimizations are in from our previous work on Build 40 and everything is working fine (comparatively) in local splitscreen and via Steam Remote Play. To play on a server, however, is a lonely experience – as zeds and other players haven’t been made visible. This, therefore, is the current mission. We have a big MP meeting tomorrow morning (so will hopefully have more details next week) but in terms of item b) – Zac has just finished a large chunk of his necessary compatibility work on the zoom build (remaking aspects of our lighting so it’s not done as a separate render pass) and will be adding these optimizations into the main beta and moving onto the server stuff. Notwithstanding a breakthrough on some tile-seam artefacts in the next day and a half (always a possibility with Zac, the dude’s a fkin legend) we’ll be leaving the higher-res models on the shelf till the end of 41 dev (or for 42) at this point. Zac’s shift over to the server work has been timed alongside the glorious return of TEA/Bitbaboon Mark – who is free again to help us with ‘dead reckoning’. This zombie-game-sounding technology will allow us to predict character movement with the anims on clients so there’s less rubber banding and lagging of character and zombie movement. We’re very excited to have Mark’s fingers back on the code, as it’s through his initial expertise and direction that we ended up with such a solid animation build. Hopefully he can cook up something just as special for our MP community. But what of item a) I hear you scream? Well with next week’s release of beta patch 41.25 we’ll *hopefully* have addressed all of the primary causes of survivor teeth-gnashing – with work done on attack prediction to stop you targeting a downed zombie when a walking zed is going to walk into range, nerfs on attack-cancelling and the ability to drop items while walking. So here too we will be free-er, in this the dawn of 2020, to go all guns-blazing onto MP and get it out into testing. Onto more general news-age. Apologies for any repeats of items from over the New Year. 41.25 PATCH We’ll be releasing the next IWBUMS beta patch early next week. It includes: A revamped mod system. Savegames now maintain their own list of active mods. This means installed mods will be activated or deactivated to match the mods specified in the save file, to avoid situations where activating or deactivating mods before loading a game would corrupt the save. Saved outfit load-outs at character creation Vehicle-headlight distance and intensity now based on the part condition Red box of doom now says ‘error’ on it. [BIG NEWS!] Sewing kit added into loot table Many and various cutaway systems fixes and improvements Fixes to: generator use, heavy load damage, being able to drink from washing machines, zombie clothing not getting wet in rain, rooftop grave digging, engine starts in cold weather, light switch rendering and usage and about a hundred other things. Zeds can also now come with bandages, many thanks to Captain Australia on Reddit for the idea. OTHER STUFF Turbo’s primary work at the moment is polishing the new body temperature system, but over Christmas if people want to work (which the maniacs often do) then bubbling side projects often come to light. The Automated Emergency Broadcast System is an example of this – a neat little extra use for a specific military frequency on your radio set that initially will allow you to ascertain what the weather is going to be doing in the area, and potentially also news on power starting to falter and other different sorts of strange messages and activity in the area. We don’t know quite how far we’re going to take this just yet, but we think it’ll be fun and useful. Yuri meanwhile has been continuing his work on the new fire visuals – optimizing effect rendering, adding different fire qualities for option toggles, making particle systems for explosions and the like moddable by the community and various other stuff. Here’s the current new fire visuals on ‘low’ quality. And here they are on high – please note there’s way too much smoke here currently. That’ll improve. Meanwhile, in non-game news, we should be unveiling our new website pretty soon – and exciting work on the trailer for the big Build 41 relaunch is also picking up speed. We’re also pleased to say that Blindcoder has now updated the online PZ Map with both the Kingsmouth holiday island and Film Studio challenge maps – which were ably made for us by the amazing Xeonyx. So check ’em out here, and also do get excited for the next map Xeonyx is cooking up for us backstage. It’s a proper doozy, and it’s awesome having Jamie on-board with us. This week’s roof camp image by Dybala. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!
  9. Suggestions forum isn't open for posting before users have 1 post.
  10. There's a specific gamemode that's similar to how build 40 plays, called "Survivor". Build 41 an onward is the game how we envision it. Even before Build 41, PZ wasn't exactly a casual-friendly game, but with the new gamemodes catering to different playstyles as well as the custom sandbox, I feel players have all the tools necessary to make the game close to what it was in build 40 without giving up any of the improvements or new additions to the game. I don't see us putting the "Classic" PZ in the main game as a menu, considering it will have so much fewer things to offer in the future. It will remain a beta branch purely for the nostalgia factor some people might feel now and again.
  11. nasKo

    Celebrate Zed Times

    Hi everyone, long ago a bargain was made with a mischievous Christmas spirit that we’d blog every week come rain, sleet or snow – so here’s your Yuletide Thursdoid. Complete, now, with IWBUMS beta Santa Hats! Clearly, not a lot to shout about this week due to the festivities BUT a few interesting nuggets have been submitted to the internal tester build for inclusion in the patch when we all get back into the swing of things back in 2020: A fix for blob corpses in areas like McCoys logging and the Prison A fix for vehicles being launched into the air by corpse piles Addition of a sewing kit to the loot table, and the glorious return of Mouse Traps. Improvements to where/how loot is dropped – including an option to allow you to always drop at the centre of the tile you’re stood on if you’re a neat freak. A fix of a pretty major ‘zombie attention’ bug that had negative impact on zeds spotting you from more than 10 tiles away – and has been prevalent in all public test builds. We’ll need some feedback on how much trickier this makes survival come patch release. A revamp/overhaul of our mod system – details on which we’ll provide next week. Traditionally too, holiday time off has always been one something that’s allowed for experimentation – stuff for the builds beyond the current one in development. And so, amongst other exciting things, we’ve been seeing where the capabilities of the animation build can take us with the people who started it all. There’s a ton of work still to go with them, they’re not on the confirmed list for 42, but… Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and auld lang syne? Thanks all, here’s to a 2020 that’s been as exciting as 2019 has been for Project Zomboid. See you next week! Many thanks to WolframGama on Reddit for the awesome screenshot we used as the Featured Image in this blog.
  12. nasKo


    The latest version is on an opt-in branch that you can get on Steam. Right click PZ in your library, click Properties, navigate to the Betas tab, select "iwillbackupmysave" from the list.
  13. nasKo

    Winter Warmer

    Hokay, so holiday season is fast approaching so the IWBUMS beta patch we put out today is going to be the last of 2019 – barring the unexpected or the hotfix in nature. The details of 41.24 can be found here, and amongst other things it contains two combat changes/improvements that we’d like some feedback on. The first is that we’ve addressed those moments when you swing and a melee weapon passes through a zombie’s head, when it looks like it clearly should have connected. Previously when a zombie was coming at you, but was out of range, you’d play the “miss” anim: a long anim with a big swing and it would feel like you were missing. Now, if a lunging zed is out of range then the hit will more clearly connect. This will hopefully make the combat feel a little more punchy and connective. The second is that we’ve tried to make zombie whack-a-mole a little fairer by forbidding any zeds you’re standing on (standing on quite precisely) to get back up to take a bite while you’re attacking their friends. This isn’t quite as all-powerful a change as it initially sounds (we think) but we could still do with some feedback on how it changes combat and whether we ought to nerf it a little. Also in 41.24: zombie alert turn animations, the ability to shoot out window panes, better zeds vs. vehicles pathfinding, QOL improvements for taking dirt/gravel/sand, some trait changes and fixes to issues that were preventing ‘feeding zed’ scenes spawning in various locations. NEXT PATCH We’ll be powering down for Christmas tomorrow, though generally our more fervent coders tend to carry on checking stuff in whenever they feel the need to avoid festive cheer. As such, we’ll likely have the next IWBUMS patch going out to you early in the first working week of Jan – which starts on Jan 6th. Already in the pot for this are improvements to the cutaway system from new ChrisW acolyte coder Fox, new clutter sprites to bring life to interiors, and some improvements to the thermo system that we wanted to test thoroughly backstage rather than plop them into a live test public test build before running away draped in tinsel. The new improved character resolutions provided by our zoom improvements (also an optimization that we hope will get remaining potato PCs aboard the anims train) should also be cooked around this point, after which will come MP and MP testing – although still no firm dates on this we’re afraid. We’re also at the point at which some of our workers are on foundation work for Build 42 both in terms of features and cool (non-Louisville) map content. It’s all looking hugely promising – and will hopefully make 2020 a year to remember for all Knox Event survivors past and present. We’ll be back with our traditional Snowman Spiffo image and a few dev-nuggets next Thursday, as we long ago sold our soul to the devil at some point in terms of doing these blogs week-in week-out. Until then though, have a great Christmas if you’re celebrating – and a nice time doing whatever else you’re doing if you’re not. This week’s image by Anikin. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!
  14. nasKo


    Hello all! Small Thursdoid this week with just a little progress update, everyone’s very tied up today with various things both Zomboid and non-Zomboid, so we’ll just cover a few points. NEXT BUILD We’re currently hard at work on the next IWBUMS build, 41.24. Fixes and additions in the build include: combat changes to stop zombies standing up if the player is standing on them as well as general fixes to swinging distances for weapons, stopping players climbing through windows with a zombie on the other side (instead the player falling back into the room), shooting at windows, quality of life additions or pouring dirt/gravel/sand, balance changes for falling out of upstairs windows, changes to the weight system, and various zombie AI fixes when dealing with fences and windows. Another thing that’s been added in finally is the zombie alert animation which we demoed a long while back but was faulty, now issues with it have been resolved. This should make zombies reaction times a little more realistic, as well as provide a bit more of a spooky atmosphere when a zombie notices you. A little sneak peek at it follows: BEYOND Meanwhile we still are trying to get the last few bothersome issues with the zoom build sorted, we apologize its taking so long but it is quite a significant change to how the entire game world is rendered and whenever we think we’re ready to go, lingering issues keep cropping up. When this is sorted, we hope it will go some way to ease the out of memory crashes some low end GPUs are seeing. To those who can’t run the IWBUMS properly, you’re not forgotten and we’re working on it. Multiplayer is still some way off with the devs able to work on the revamp preoccupied with more immediate compatibility concerns with people not being able to run the game, the zoom build needs to be polished off before we can dedicate the resources to the multiplayer systems. It’s coming though! And we will get the first MP tests in the new year. Looking further ahead, Lemmy meanwhile has been continuing his eternal work on REDACTED (you know what) and has been sharing some really cool progress videos within the team that, due to us learning our lessons from the past of showing progress prematurely in that department, we’re forbidding ourselves sharing at this point until they are more imminent (despite us really wanting to!) However with the new animation system in-place, progress has been great and sexy looking, and things are looking really exciting and progress has been very swift due to leveraging the animation overhaul’s data driven systems. We can’t wait to share once build 41 hits stable! This week’s image by Tiarv. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!
  15. Make sure you have 41.23b. If not, restart Steam. Might just take a bit until you get the update pushed
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