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Zedlights

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We released the Build 39 vehicles patch this time last week – release notes for which can be found here.
 This seems to have remedied the most pressing issues with Build 39 and 
(given that we also don’t want to add any major changes to the pot 
without enough testing) further tweaks and improvements will go into 
Build 40.


All of Build 40’s bigger features are already complete, if untested, 
so we’re hoping to get it into IWBUMS public beta testing within the 
next few weeks and for it to be a fairly quickfire version. As such a 
lot of work in the coming week involves bringing work done while we were
 polishing the release candidate for Build 39 into the main 40 build – 
stirring each ingredient in one after the other.


First off Yuri from General Arcade has done a lot of work on MP 
networking, vehicle clipping, floating cars, headlights, vehicle shadows
 and zombie reaction speeds – and then Stas’ new chatbox will also 
finally get its time in the sun. Finally Turbo’s work on the new climate
 system, improved rain/snow/fog and general ‘greater sense of season’ 
work will also be added to the mix.


As we’ve discussed in previous dev blogs, Turbo’s final hurdle was 
finding ways to make the new precipitation and fog visible through 
windows – initially in pre-made buildings, and then with the trickier 
proposition of player-made structures. Telling the game not to conjure 
up internal fog in a constructed base was a big issue.


As such, this week he has been finishing a system that can accurately
 detect player-made rooms and regions on each height layer – now the PZ 
engine can properly detect if an area is enclosed by walls, windows, 
door frames and fences. The system also checks whether said area is 
roofed, and then mask a feature like fog from that and all connected 
rooms. It practice it looks a little bit like this…

 


Having this functionality in the game will also make it far, far 
easier to prevent the occasional ‘zombie in my base!’ bugs that have 
been known to creep back into the game – and also be very handy for 
other independent zoning systems for farming improvements etc.


While the above features are being added to Build 40 other team 
members are blitzing through our internal task system – verifying 
reported bugs, fixing up legacy issues and generally sorting out 
long-term kinks in the game that have sat in the system unaddressed for 
too long. The advent of the new animations system, and the dev 
changeover to it, will bring a lot of new work and issues so the more of
 these 300-ish minor tasks we can strike from the record the cleaner our
 plate will be.


This sort of stuff deals with missing loot spawns, errant nutrition 
values, trait issues, places you can’t sleep but should be able to and 
other general irritations. In addition, meanwhile, we’re adding stuff to
 improve vehicles – like the ability to use metalwork skills to 
dismantle car wrecks and retrieve construction materials, and making it 
very unwise to drive your car while drunk.


Once we’ve cleared out these tasks we can also add in some more community suggestions,
 start to polish some of our more elderly game systems and also do some 
planned work on our current loot system to give us more power on what 
spawns where and by how much – which is also a requirement to get the 
best out of the new animation/models system as we’ll certain zombies 
spawning in certain locations, with certain loot around then.


The work on the animations system, and the AnimZed tool itself, 
continues with our friends at T.E.A. It’s relatively dry dev work this 
week, but all necessary stuff. Zac has been going through AnimZed 
changes following the feedback of our animator Martin last week, and 
will continue to supply new versions for him to check out. Grant has 
been working on the Game state hook-up, and compiling guidelines for 
coders and modders to follow with T.E.A.’s data-driven approach to 
animation integration. Mark has been investigating load/rendering issues
 with backpacks, and Gar is adding new masks/test textures for 
texture-based pants/tops which are coming in the editor.


Thanks so much for all your continuing feedback and bug reports on 
Build 39 everyone. It’s been great having so many new and returning 
players, and hopefully we’ve got some good stuff in the pipeline for all
 concerned parties.


This week’s night cruise from Cocoa. 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.
 

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Although this is my first post, I've been a lurker following PZ news for... heh, well, too many years now. Despite the rest of this post I honestly appreciate the huge amount of work everyone at TIS, and now also TEA, is putting in to create something special. From the number of hours that many people have already spent in your game, it's clear the work is paying dividends for at least for a portion of the fans.

 

That said, I can't hold back any longer from saying how disappointed I am to see animations shoved yet further into the dev cycle again. I'd been waiting patiently throughout the development of MP, then vehicles, with fingers crossed that finally - surely - there wouldn't be anything to prevent anims from coming next. Here we are, though. The wording of "Zedlights" says they won't be in B40, so that's maybe another 2 months or more until we get an idea of what'll be in B41. At this point my patience as a lurker has worn thin enough to say something.

 

I know you as a dev team are following the best path you can see, but you've been talking about the new animation / clothing system regularly for 3 years, often in a way that suggested it'll be the next thing added. Come on, guys; from any viewpoint you have to see this is ridiculous. Please show some sanity and don't continue to do this. Respectfully, "put up or shut up."

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1 hour ago, Telkir said:

Although this is my first post, I've been a lurker following PZ news for... heh, well, too many years now. Despite the rest of this post I honestly appreciate the huge amount of work everyone at TIS, and now also TEA, is putting in to create something special. From the number of hours that many people have already spent in your game, it's clear the work is paying dividends for at least for a portion of the fans.

 

That said, I can't hold back any longer from saying how disappointed I am to see animations shoved yet further into the dev cycle again. I'd been waiting patiently throughout the development of MP, then vehicles, with fingers crossed that finally - surely - there wouldn't be anything to prevent anims from coming next. Here we are, though. The wording of "Zedlights" says they won't be in B40, so that's maybe another 2 months or more until we get an idea of what'll be in B41. At this point my patience as a lurker has worn thin enough to say something.

 

I know you as a dev team are following the best path you can see, but you've been talking about the new animation / clothing system regularly for 3 years, often in a way that suggested it'll be the next thing added. Come on, guys; from any viewpoint you have to see this is ridiculous. Please show some sanity and don't continue to do this. Respectfully, "put up or shut up."

Animations are not coming any later. It would just be silly to hold back work done elsewhere or not to work on anything else at all, just so the "next thing" is Animations. 

The bug and balance fixing mentioned isn't something that's being done instead of working on Animations. It's done by other parts of the team, while the other part of the team continues to work on Animations.
"Put up or shut up" would mean "Animations or nothing" in this case, which would be the opposite of a good approach. Putting animations in before they're ready for testing is just not an option, so I feel the potential for argument ends right there. 

No doubt it's been a long time, but it's going to take as long as needed. 

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I knew it.. I almost got hyped this few weeks but i didnt because i know TIS. never get hype on the features that they promised because your going to assume that theyre going to release it within weeks then it becomes a month, months, year, 3 years and more to come

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Well... I don't want to argue my point indefinitely because that would only lead to trouble for everyone involved, but I do want to come back at you once as I think you've slightly missed what I was trying to say :)

 

Maybe it was too much of a paraphrase to say "put up or shut up". I was talking mainly about your blog coverage and expressing a preference not to see any stuff about anims when there's nothing new to say, unless a time comes when you know for certain they'll be in IWBUMS shortly.

 

I think we have a difference of opinion on how you should be structuring those updates - to me it feels like we've had 3 years of seeing the same thing except with slightly different wording. Sure, you guys have decided to post weekly, and you need to fill those posts with something, but... well, as I say, a difference of opinion, and I'm sure you would come back and say "Players would still complain if we went silent." That's true but it could be waved away if you gave some explanation of why you were going silent in the first place.

 

I strongly disagree that animations aren't coming any later. We've had blog posts in both 2015 and 2016 suggesting they were very close to entering an IWBUMS build, then suddenly the hype for vehicles and MP takes off in 2017 and shifts anims to the back burner. Now, in 2018, we're hearing more about animations again - but suddenly they seem not as ready as they were before? Animations are coming later, either because (1) those two features have added more work to complete anims, or (2) it wasn't convenient to integrate anims into the main branch while vehicles / MP was being worked on. If anything I've said here is wrong, maybe you can instead give an idea why on earth the anims system been such an absolute monster that has dragged on for all this time?

 

Anyhow, good luck to the team with the remainder of development. I don't expect anything in my box of internet text to change the future so I'll return to lurking and clenching my teeth as I try to remain patient.

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3 hours ago, Telkir said:

Well... I don't want to argue my point indefinitely because that would only lead to trouble for everyone involved, but I do want to come back at you once as I think you've slightly missed what I was trying to say :)

 

Maybe it was too much of a paraphrase to say "put up or shut up". I was talking mainly about your blog coverage and expressing a preference not to see any stuff about anims when there's nothing new to say, unless a time comes when you know for certain they'll be in IWBUMS shortly.

 

I think we have a difference of opinion on how you should be structuring those updates - to me it feels like we've had 3 years of seeing the same thing except with slightly different wording. Sure, you guys have decided to post weekly, and you need to fill those posts with something, but... well, as I say, a difference of opinion, and I'm sure you would come back and say "Players would still complain if we went silent." That's true but it could be waved away if you gave some explanation of why you were going silent in the first place.

 

I strongly disagree that animations aren't coming any later. We've had blog posts in both 2015 and 2016 suggesting they were very close to entering an IWBUMS build, then suddenly the hype for vehicles and MP takes off in 2017 and shifts anims to the back burner. Now, in 2018, we're hearing more about animations again - but suddenly they seem not as ready as they were before? Animations are coming later, either because (1) those two features have added more work to complete anims, or (2) it wasn't convenient to integrate anims into the main branch while vehicles / MP was being worked on. If anything I've said here is wrong, maybe you can instead give an idea why on earth the anims system been such an absolute monster that has dragged on for all this time?

 

Anyhow, good luck to the team with the remainder of development. I don't expect anything in my box of internet text to change the future so I'll return to lurking and clenching my teeth as I try to remain patient.

 

I have to agree. I am sick and tired of these developers constantly adding features to the game (aka feature creep) and not even acknowledge that there is damn issue with delaying substantial update. I am sorry, I love PZ, I really do, and I deeply appreciate the game and concept, but sadly, my patience over 7 years of early access has worn thin. I am sorry, but you had almost a decade to work out kinks and issues of this game, yet here we are in 2018. 3 years ago you promised animations, 3 years ago you've showed WORKING build with WORKING animations, and suddenly something else is stopping you from making IWBUMS of it?

 

You hype up one feature, then put it on backburner to hype up another one (vehicles, climate), when this isn't what we wanted. Sure, I appreciate working cars, but I'd appreciate more actually getting those animations because they would make zomboid that much better. I am sorry but I have to pull out an argument - I've paid for this game to aid developement. I bought it 'as is' however I was promised something and that something wasn't delivered. I held back my purchase for a WHOLE DAMN YEAR, because at the end of 2016 I've checked and seen animations not released.

 

Fast Forward to 2018, I bought the game and guess what - ANIMATIONS ARE STILL NOT THERE. I am really tired of waiting. You have to finally understand (especially moderators) that your explanations sound funny at this point. You explanations as to why it takes so long are just hilarous at this point and I fully stand with people pissed at you over delaying this for 3 years. I will definetly not forget that. I never will. This is something I will keep in mind in future if TIS ever puts out another game out.

 

Sadly this game was my first negative review on steam. I didn't want to.. but my patience has ran out.

Edited by Eggtooth

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3 hours ago, Telkir said:

I strongly disagree that animations aren't coming any later.

 

My point wasn't to argue why animations haven't come out in three years. 

The point was that build 40 not having them doesn't mean animations are going to come out later.

 

Again, the only option here would be not having something else in the meantime, which would be way worse. 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, nasKo said:

 

My point wasn't to argue why animations haven't come out in three years. 

The point was that build 40 not having them doesn't mean animations are going to come out later.

 

Again, the only option here would be not having something else in the meantime, which would be way worse. 

 

 

I'd rather not have something else in meantime than have yet another feature added to the game that yet again might delay things because suddenly 100035346356 bugs. I apologise if I sound harsh, but you have to understand, 3 years is a DAMN long time. 

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9 minutes ago, Eggtooth said:

I apologise if I sound harsh, but you have to understand, 3 years is a DAMN long time. 

2

That's understandable.

 

9 minutes ago, Eggtooth said:

I'd rather not have something else in meantime than have yet another feature added to the game that yet again might delay things because suddenly 100035346356 bugs. 

2

 

None of the features that are going to appear in build 40 are delaying Animations. Where is that idea coming from?

 

 

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52 minutes ago, nasKo said:

That's understandable.

 

 

None of the features that are going to appear in build 40 are delaying Animations. Where is that idea coming from?

 

 

Wording. Damn thursdoid wording. From what I understood, first they have to resolve issues (300+ bugs), then implement community requested features. The wording on TIS' side is poor and it made it look like they are delaying it yet again.

 

That's how I understood it.

Quote

While the above features are being added to Build 40 other team 
members are blitzing through our internal task system – verifying 
reported bugs, fixing up legacy issues and generally sorting out 
long-term kinks in the game that have sat in the system unaddressed for 
too long. The advent of the new animations system, and the dev 
changeover to it, will bring a lot of new work and issues so the more of
 these 300-ish minor tasks we can strike from the record the cleaner our
 plate will be.


This sort of stuff deals with missing loot spawns, errant nutrition 
values, trait issues, places you can’t sleep but should be able to and 
other general irritations. In addition, meanwhile, we’re adding stuff to
 improve vehicles – like the ability to use metalwork skills to 
dismantle car wrecks and retrieve construction materials, and making it 
very unwise to drive your car while drunk.


Once we’ve cleared out these tasks we can also add in some more community suggestions,
 start to polish some of our more elderly game systems and also do some 
planned work on our current loot system to give us more power on what 
spawns where and by how much – which is also a requirement to get the 
best out of the new animation/models system as we’ll certain zombies 
spawning in certain locations, with certain loot around then.

 

Edited by Eggtooth

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This isn't an assembly line process - one line being slower or completing their tasks faster doesn't back up the factory. Weather, bug fixes, animations .ect are all worked on by specific people, seperate from each other. They have no impact on one another or slow down others work.

 

Animations (TEA) aren't out because animations aren't done. It's not because of cleaning up the issue tracker and small fixes (Connall, EP, RJ), Yuri's car stuff, Turbo's weather, or Stas's LWJGL3 upgrade and chat box.

 

The Mondoids make this clear by talking about people and what  they do each week or specific projects. It hasnt been "one guy tries to do it all" since the 2013 and the hiring of additional staff.

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Needless to say, i was too disappointed with the whole Build 40 going without animations.

And i get it, i get that everyone in the team have different stuff going on and one thing does not delay the other, but my question is, what happen to the progress of the animations?

 

Because i cant even remember what summer i stopped playing the game because the animations were coming, then the animations went into the backburner because of the vehicles, but in every Mondoid and then Thursdoid there was always "Progress continues on the animations!", "AnimZed progress!" , "Hooking more states animations to the remaining game systems!" and so on and on and on for this year and the the whole of last year, but from the sounds of the last devblogs, the animations update seems to be aiming for a December release or something estimating on how long each IWBUMS is. 

 

This also makes me wonder, how big is the update going to be now, is still going to be missing the sneak section? (there was a blogpost saying that the initial animation update would be incomplete and lack some features, like sneaking and taking cover) or is it going to be the full package? 

 

And the worry from the Build 40 i think comes from how IWBUMS works, so lets say that mid IWBUMS Build 40, there a breakthrough so big that allows the animations to be "stable" enough for testing, would the IWBUMS Build 40 merge with a animations build? Or we would need to wait for the IWBUMS to end and then stabilize for 3~4 weeks (like Build 39 with the current ironing out of bugs in the stable branch) to get the animation build or have a total different branch to test out the animations, like the vehicle branch?

I think that is the question that makes people go "aww fuck, build 40 is going to delay the animations *again*" 

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They're just numbers. Meaningless.

 

If feature == done then feature.releaseNextBuild()

else

feature.keepWorking()

end

 

There are no dates to feel out in the blog posts. Please don't try.

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But why you never talk about reasons of delay?

Personally I will feel myself more calmly if I will know what problems delay anims release and what you need to do for finishing the build.

 

(I am not the one who need anims right here and right now, i dont give a shit about time, thats my favorite game and I will wait as long as you make this game, I just want to more clear development process, that you would share problems with us)

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On 6/24/2018 at 7:06 PM, EnigmaGrey said:

This isn't an assembly line process

 

5 hours ago, EnigmaGrey said:

They're just numbers, Morty!

 

Why do people find it so hard to wrap their noodle around these facts?

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this is what i think and doesnt mean im right.i think the idea of game is great its the the game we all can enjoy.as we enjoyed mine craft.its new great big.but but we should know the team i think is small.its not like EA games or I dont know like GTA or Need for speed developers.as i seen the youtupe video(how not to build a game) its their first game that they released and also the money problem(independent group).so they are making their best.yes we saw the state of decay 2 came out so soon.the thing is there is no choice and also they never tooke a lot of money( the game is under 20 dollars i guess)so they can close the game and say hey its done but they want it to make noise for the people like mine craft as its noising untile now(every body likes this game)anyway every one can wait no other choise.me myself getting bored of waiting but no other choise.

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Let's just hope they keep to their word about no mentioning of NPCs until they're a week away. I get animations will come, but it's obvious the wait will get to people. Unlike Steam people who don't seem to grasp the concept of "focusing on something intently, makes slower or the wait longer" and ignoring PZ like I did for almost a year for vehicles to be finished is better. It's just unfortunate vehicles were released first, far from them being bad or anything, but because I'm way more for animations and wish they could have released a test branch as fast as they did for vehicles.

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