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The Build 39 Vehicles build (playable in public IWBUMS beta) is essentially ready to go, but we need to be sure that a couple of issues have been solved by today’s release of Build 39.57: one that saw crowds of zombies pinging vehicles off roads in MP, and another on some dedicated servers that had zeds attracted to a vehicle’s previous position that we also think was to do with the physics interpolation. [So please let us know if you encounter either!]

39.57 also improves the way vehicles are arranged in parking stalls by adding directional pointers to the mix, addresses issues with watch alarms, adds extra options to help you tailor/toggle world degradation (erosion) in the game and some tweaks to help modders with the change to the vehicles build. Amidst a lot of under the hood stuff to keep stuff ticking over. EDIT: A complete changelist will appear here in the next day or so, but due to last minute issue with the latest code we’ve released a build that was already in testing and thus we’ll have to recompile the changelist to suit.

In the mean-time let’s go round the houses and find out what other PZ types are up to:

ANIMS

Last week we announced that we’d teamed up with a gang of renegade coders called The Eccentric Ape – ably led by our current anims-focussed Technical Director whizz (Bitbaboon) Mark. This past week has seen them getting up to speed with PZ, and right now they’re getting their hands dirty in the codebase. The plan is for them to do a big push on the animation system, and overall intention is that we’ll be working alongside them on many of our big features going forward.

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So, for the next little while TEA’s Grant is fixing up remaining issues with layer/node and blending code, and then adding in the common state conditions that animations will ‘trigger’ – stuff like collision being on/off for combat and swings. Snitz, meanwhile, is setting to work on movement, idle and swing states to remove anything still hard coded and tie them instead to the new in-game variables.

Finally, Zac and Gaz are working on AnimZed, making it more user friendly, filtering and sorting the anims into the first set of released animations and focussing on it from the end user perspective. By the time this push is complete the system should be in a state where Animator Martin, and ultimately modders, can dive in and start layering new anims for the remaining states with very little required coder intervention.

WEATHER

Turbo’s big challenge at the moment with the new precipitation and fog that go hand in hand with his simulated climate system is how to handle it when you look out of windows – in the current game rain isn’t visible outside, and this bug will become much clearer with better rain and fog effects. Particles currently get drawn after the world has been drawn, and the weather is drawn over this final image – so we need a solution for this so you can check the weather outside your safehouse without walking out into it.

We anticipate that looking out of a window when hearing the noise of, for an example, an approaching thunderstorm (thunderclaps at the correct timing, taking into account to your distance away on the map from lightning and the centre of the storm) will be a much more common occurrence with this new system – likewise with checking out the fog. As such it’s something we need to fix up before release.

While he puzzles this all out alongside our other coders, Turbs is also creating a new sound bank for ambient sounds to signal seasonal change. He’s currently got a supply of forest zone sounds, insect noise, rain effects for both indoors and outdoors, extra SFX for heavy weather, birdsong and indoor/outdoor wind effects.

He intends to have it so that, for example, on a hot summer afternoon with little to no wind you can hear the crickets chirping – and for birds to become silent when heavy weather hits. It’s intended to be soft background noise, but if implemented well should really improve your sense of the time of year – and the current weather state created by the simulated climate system. After a meeting with the PZ art brigade Turbo is also going to add some more direction to his ‘clouds overhead’ effect, as currently they look a little too smoke-like.

OTHER STUFF

Bitbaboon Steve is finishing off our updated internal build system, while Connall is investigating ways to help our community translators keep up to date with translation strings that are updated from build to build. Mash continues with Louisville, while RingoD is building a wider roster of house and apartment buildings that she can drop into residential areas when she moves into the suburbs.

When they return from Russian Victory Day vacations General Arcade’s Yuri is working on MP network physics, and Stas continues his work to improve gamepad and mouse settings/bindings. ChrisW is also back with us and will work on giving final polish to his existing rooftop occlusion system when it comes to player-built structures, before returning to his work on Sims-style interior cutaways in houses.

Due to a necessary forum upgrade we’re also having to decommission our current Bug Tracker, which is annoying but has to be done unfortunately. We’ve harvested all the longstanding issues that were present in it, so if you see any of your reports disappearing – please don’t worry as they have a new home in our internal system. We’ll work on getting a decent replacement in the weeks ahead.

This week’s 911 call out from Ghost. 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 hereOur Discord is open for chat and hijinks too. The CBOIT would like to apologise to Mark for calling T.E.A. ‘The Educated Ape’ last week instead of ‘Eccentric’, although that would also have been a good name for his new company.

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I dont want to sound negative or anything, but i swear i been reading the same thing about animations like since October 2017.

 

I always seen the "tying up the animation to a state",  "blending animations", "trigger conditions" and "making AnimZed more user friendly", so i am just left wondering how polished or how many animations that update is going have and how long is the wait going to be between the stable vehicle build and the first experimental animation build. Like i know they are going to deliver on them, but it seems like there is never a clear progress if they are still tying up animations to the code.

 

Still nice to see the team getting bigger and the vehicle build almost ready to go.

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1 hour ago, Blasted_Taco said:

I dont want to sound negative or anything, but i swear i been reading the same thing about animations like since October 2017.

 

I always seen the "tying up the animation to a state",  "blending animations", "trigger conditions" and "making AnimZed more user friendly", so i am just left wondering how polished or how many animations that update is going have and how long is the wait going to be between the stable vehicle build and the first experimental animation build. Like i know they are going to deliver on them, but it seems like there is never a clear progress if they are still tying up animations to the code.

 

Still nice to see the team getting bigger and the vehicle build almost ready to go.

My thoughts exactly, 

 

It's a shame TIS can no longer openly talk about this stuff through fear of being blasted about missing deadlines, but I've heard "Mark is plugging away at the animations" so many times now that it's effectively meaningless.  They've expanded the group again but that just means it'll take another week to introduce them to the code (Which, alright yeah there is no alternative to that and the payoff will arrive. I do understand).

 

Vehicles are great, a much needed addition. However the Animation video that was posted in 2016 seemed smooth, then vehicles took precedence and well in the long run I can see how it's going to save a headache. 

 

I don't really know what I'm trying to say here really? Don't misunderstand me here, this is not a rant or a complaint because you guys have pushed through tonnes of online crap and still refuse to be beat down which I can only admire you for. It's just the vagueness of the information doesn't really give us much to hope for now, it's been the same feeling now since late 2016 at least.

 

If I was hyped for vehicles then I guess I'd be fine, Animations where the meat that I was hoping for though and they're constantly mentioned but I never feel like I'm any closer to understanding what's going on. Mondays were the hype days and now Thursdays, it's a rush of "Maybe, Maybe it'll just release in a single update. They might be saving it for a special date". I remember when you guys cracked the saving conundrum and tagged it on as a little add-on or surprise addition even though you said it wasn't ready. 

 

The hype comes from the love of the game you've made, as annoying and frustrating as it is to have these people nagging at you, the majority of this is because the game you've created is the best 'True zombie survival sandbox' out there. You took the Zombie genre on when it was (and still is) over saturated to high hell and have made it last and kept it fresh.

 

It's a slow development cycle, you know it and we do. Waiting for 7 days and then getting same same info over and over again just starts to chip away at that... passion.

 

It's late here, UK bound like Lemmy and Binky (and the other few) so I hope this comes across in the right way since I'm getting drowsy (The moodlet says so...)

 

Thanks again for the information. 

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As the other guys said:

 

I'm always hyped for a new Thursdoid (RIP Mondoid), and always hope for a surprise release of something big (now animations) but it rarely happens. Well, I'm extremely patient :)

Edited by Geras

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1 hour ago, You've Got Red On You said:

Snip snap

 

Exactly my thoughts, also holy shit it has been 2 years since this video

By now this is just a blur for me, i cant even remember when the animations went silent and the vehicles started to pop up in mondoids, i swear to god it was one summer where i said "i will just wait till the animations drop so i can play again in Redboid (or whatever reddit server it was, but it was the first version of the server)"

 

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My advice to everyone above is until the animations drop, or heck even the NPCs if that's what you're holding out for, bank cash and bamk hours off at work so you can settle in for a little vacation when these things hit. The longer it takes, the more time you have to save up and the longer your vacay can be :P

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