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Hey all, Thursday greetings.

 

IWBUMS BETA 40.14 RELEASED

We’ve just released IWBUMS beta 40.14, which is another release that’s primarily fix and polish – our current aim for the devs working on this build being to make lots of quality of life corrections and adjustments while Turbo finishes his weather/climate work and the version can get a full public release. You can see the patch notes here.

To this end this version fixes missing raindrops, absent MP storms and other climate errors – while EP has also figured out the annoying sound volume and delayed sound issues, which should now be eradicated. The telepathic ‘terminator’ zeds trailing after players in MP that several of our IWBUMS testers have reported have also been stripped of their powers.

EP has also made improvements to alleviate longstanding woes with zombies appearing in your vision cone all-too-late in large buildings like the Mall, and Yuri has made fuel caps more accessible through his vehicle anti-clipping force-field.

EP has also been through all the various vehicle features and made them operate as you’d expect when the car battery is dead or uninstalled, also having them still operational until the car is powered down when the battery is removed and the engine is going. Another minor, but irritating and ancient, bug he’s figured out is the frozen food that’s been spawning in freezers long after the final power outage.

Please be aware that SpiffoSpace remains open for IWBUMS testing. This server, based in France, has no password and can be found by anyone running the beta (access details here). Once we’ve added in some admin power over weather (admin-triggered storm/snow/fog etc) we will be coordinating a Community Megatest on here.

IWBUMS NEXT

Due for internal testing over the weekend and early next week, Turbo has redone the way the IWBUMS beta currently has changes in temperature, and resistance to hot and cold, impact on the player. Although it works okay-ish currently, the edges were too rough – and deaths were often broken/cheap.

His revamped system focuses on how resistance to the elements is calculated – and the way it takes hunger, thirst, worn clothing, wetness and exercise all into account should be a marked improvement. The temperature ‘safe zone’ range will be wider too, and the system takes ‘real time’ minutes into account rather than ‘game time’ – so fast forward peril is decreased, alongside being dead by dawn next to the embers of a camp fire.

The next version will also improve weather visuals to better distinguish rain from snow, and add in temperature conversions – so our Kentucky setting gets its proper and correct Fahrenheit readings, rather than horrid old European centigrade.

 

MUSIC MAN ZACH

While the four guys over at T.E.A. continue to work on our new animations system, we thought it might be worthwhile mentioning the fifth horseman of that build: our music composer Zach Beever.

Since animations are such a fundamental evolution of the game, we want a whole bunch of new music to bring players along emotionally with the new visuals. Zach’s been working with us for months now, preparing a whole host of new tracks, many including familiar themes and motifs from old favourites.

Rather than drip them in one by one, and to give him time to work on them as a collective whole, we felt their impact would be far greater if they all went in together. To this end, behind the scenes, Zach has now completed 19 new music tracks, with more to come – and a part of one of the latest can be heard below.

https://projectzomboid.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/zacpreview.mp3?_=1

 
 
 

For thoughts on his direction and inspiration for the music, we thought we’d ask the man himself.

“When I began work on the soundtrack some years ago, part of the overall vision was to incorporate instruments that were totally removed from the Kentucky setting. The thinking was to mirror the massive shift in the world—that whole zombie thing—with an equally big change in the (expected) music. What could have possibly been played by the banjo and fiddle, for example, went to the tar and duduk.”

“Recently, though, the team brought up a player’s suggestion to reexamine this and tie in aspects of the local music. This took some thought and a good bit of experimentation, as I didn’t want to upset the identity we had created for Zomboid.”

“The result is a new set of tracks that, I believe, expand on the old ones faithfully—the mood is still there, but now we’ve got American-style sounds mixing with the more middle-eastern sounding ones. When everything’s heard together, I hope the occasional appearance of these instruments (and their distinct playing styles) hints at the past world.”

 

VEHICLE ENHANCEMENTS

Behind the scenes there’s currently a lot of conversation about revamps of existing systems (farming, last week’s thoughts on polishing the power outage etc) but something else we’re discussing are ‘survival-style’ skill and recipe-based enhancements to vehicles. To which end, we thought we’d float this image of our potential direction with this in front of the community – to gauge opinion and gather some feedback.

Please note that this is NOT a final representation – it requires a full art pass, not to mention a lot of coding work that will likely come from General Arcade’s Yuri for a future build. It does, however, show how a modular model system could work – and we’d like your thoughts on it.

NormalCar_versions.png

 

PENISHAM FESTIVAL

It’s currently the Annual Penisham Celebration on our forums. Feel free to join in, but be aware that Penisham will only be available for another five days.

This week’s patriotism from GodImtrash . 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. And did you ever wonder how the Knox Event played out in the UK, well wonder no more

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I like the idea of a modular system to upgrade cars, being able to choose which piece I want to upgrade first etc. Please add an upgrade to protect the lights so I no longer have to carry 30 spare bulbs in the glove box lol.

 

One thing that I think would be important is to tie this in with metalworking, at the moment there is really no reason to take metalworking over carpentry.

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That subtle, subdued backwoods banjo sound is so much better. It accomplishes this sort of melancholic feeling which is far superior to the overbearing middle eastern chants which is so out of place. I feel like the cars look superb. I still want that plow on the front of a box van so I can move my way through a horde or a few cars. ;-)

Edited by sharkstertheshark

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Give me anything on hood modifications.  Being unable to repair and improve cars is a pain.  Playing on insane settings, one trip to town and your hood, windshield, lights are all gone and need replacement.

 

And get rid of that ugly trunk repair copy job from the weapon template.  Gross.  Having limited repairs on a long term object is not good design!

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Was just reading up on dead matter, another zombie upcoming survival game and they posted in their blog about upgrades to vehicles as well and posted some pics.

 

Please let us do this to the vans in zomboid as well, roof racks to vehicles would be a good idea too... More storage space.

 

van.thumb.png.297243ab0a6961a8700b00b70f68704c.png

Edited by Neutz

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1 minute ago, Neutz said:

Was just reading up on dead matter, another zombie upcoming survival game and they posted in their blog about upgrades to vehicles as well and posted some pics.

 

Please let us do this to the vans in zomboid as well, roof racks to vehicles would be a good idea too... More storage space and they could work the same way filler store shelves do with the empty and fill variations.

 

Roof racks sounds cool!

Also, additional roof headlights for ultimate cone of light.

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That sounds like a great upgrade tree with prerequisites and so forth...

 

For example.... First you need the metalworking skill level -> then you need the roof rack recipe -> then you can mount lights which do not get smashed when you hit zombies...  Progress and Goals, is always a good thing in survival games!!

 

 

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Neat idea to add survival-style upgrades, but if you want some consistency with the realism in the game there are changes you immediately need to make to those designs.

 

Yeah, sure, if this was a blanket no-realism game, if you are willing to throw realism out of the window or at the very least heavily penalize the driving ability for the vehicles, those are fine.

 

Let's get the immediate objective issues out of the way first, followed by what I think would work very well.

 

-Cow catchers and other "plow" modifications on cars - good way to make sure you bend your frame as soon as you hit something. None of these are designed to hit anything above a low speed either. Not an efficient survival option. This is often why most real attempts at actual waste land machines aim for ground clearance, not decreasing it. I don't think you guys will be implementing full body-on-chassis rebuilds to make this work, but it should be pointed out.

 

Oh, and let's not forget that you will clip that (and bend your frame) and tear it off on any bump where the ground clearance of the car would already be challenged. Running over a corpse is especially inefficient with that, even worse off than the car would have already been. This would only really affect things positively on heavy, high-torque vehicles (big rigs, where these upgrades can actually be seen used in a real context) and implemented for moving larger objects at lower speed (and not running through zed).

 

-You can't cover the wheel that turns with a flat piece of metal as that prevents your wheels from turning outward. This is why you would only see those half-fender covers on older cars on the rear wheels exclusively.

 

-Window coverings: Yeah, with what you showed for the 'high end' modification, reduce visibility to roughly 10% overall. Too over the top otherwise. You should consider an alternative that is much more sparse, that still has visibility issues overall.

 

-Making the body heavy should make your handling noteably more sluggish and your vehicle slower over all. A variant of that upgrade that uses metal bars could also work well.

 

-Welding a mask onto your car? Never open your hood again. If you are looking to reinforce those by welding sheets onto it, you should consider localizing it to the individual parts and make maintenance take longer for having to navigate that.

 

-Roof rack is fine (but should add weight as a fair trade-off)

 

-Brush guards are fine, but that design could apply more to reduce the loss of speed when driving through smaller trees and zed than negating damage.

 

-With all of the auto parts and aftermarkets in the US, you should really consider upgrades for the interior of the vehicle as well as under the hood. You should acknowledge that performance aftermarket exhausts often do no such thing for reducing noise. Appropriate aftermarket parts (i.e. brush gaurds for trucks) should also be rare finds that look much more professional than shoddy weld-work.

 

-Consider roof lights

 

Other than that, really happy to see this coming in! :)

Edited by Kim Jong Un

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I'm enjoying the new music. Reminds me of the "Banjo music" you got in Left 4 Dead 2.

It makes for a nice local aesthetic.

Is there any future information relating to adding more types of cars/trucks? E.g. "larger" vehicles which are not articulated? (Coaches, busses, box trucks, flatbeds, small tankers, police vans, towtrucks etc?) I'm not particularly sure on the restrictions on vehicles hence why I'd generally presume non-articulated vehicles are only possible, but even then, is there a general size limit on said vehicles due to collision issues with low buildings, lamposts etc?

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19 hours ago, sharkstertheshark said:

far superior to the overbearing middle eastern chants which is so out of place

 

How dare you.

9 hours ago, Kim Jong Un said:

Snips

 

Yeah i was thinking the same thing about the wheel, only bad stuff can happens if you put a metal sheet so close to the wheel and if you fuck around with your bumper. But at this point i dont think they will take the realistic approach of making those upgrades fuck over the player like the chainsaw will (pls gib animations before the vehicles, pls)

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1 hour ago, Blasted_Taco said:

 

How dare you.

 

Yeah i was thinking the same thing about the wheel, only bad stuff can happens if you put a metal sheet so close to the wheel and if you fuck around with your bumper. But at this point i dont think they will take the realistic approach of making those upgrades fuck over the player like the chainsaw will (pls gib animations before the vehicles, pls)

Look closely and you'll see the panels are raised above the wheel, not pressing against it.

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27 minutes ago, EnigmaGrey said:

Look closely and you'll see the panels are raised above the wheel, not pressing against it.

 

That doesn't actually fix the core, objective flaw with the design that makes it counter-intuitive. Even if it's not "pressing against it", the wheel turning outward whenever the car needs to maneuver requires space outside of the vehicle.

 

Why-Have-Modern-Cars-Turned-Boring-1110x

(Often the wheel turns out farther than that)

 

As I described in my lengthy post about the objective issues with these upgrades, it's the reason why you see in older cars with fender covers as a design that they only occur on the rear wheels, which do not turn and do not need that space.

 

Spoiler

1200px-1969_Buick_Electra_225_Custom_whi

 

This is also why in plenty of attempts to model real apocalypse-ready vehicles, the turning wheel is left uncovered, as it's not something you want to hamper in your vehicle.

 

You also need to consider that with body roll (inevitable, and already implemented anyways, amplified by the fact that these are older vehicles that have softer suspensions) that any coverage to the wheel won't further dig into the wheel when the body twists side to side as the weight on the car shifts with every turn.

 

There are plenty of usable stuff in the concept pictures, but a lot there needs heavy reconsidering or needs to heavily penalize the player. A lot of these things wouldn't easily be considered upgrades that won't heavily penalize you in other places. These designs are influenced by show cars and movie props that may not actually benefit how you expect them in real world application. There are a bunch of cool and useful upgrades that could make this fun for gameplay that could work, just needs a lot of tweaking. :) 

Edited by Kim Jong Un

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I, too, exist in a reality where cars exist and am aware of how steering works. Note that not all cars have their wheels flush with the edge of the fender.  Some have quite large fenders. 

 

Consider that this is simple to address and that we've likely reached the same conclusion: you limit the range of motion of the wheel (possibly damage the wheel if pushed past this) and let people make mistakes.  Personally, I am not really that concerned about the realistic modelling of vehicle roll in relation to the additional weight of a piece of armour that's going to be shown on an isometric model, zoomed out, anyway.

 

I get that it's exciting, but you're over-thinking it.

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I'm answering the call on the post to over-think it, so this is the feedback that I have to offer. I was also consulted on the original implementation of vehicles and maintenance by RJ, so I'll happily provide this again for vehicle upgrades with suggestions and work-arounds. I and others are not part of the development team. While I am grateful for having participated and called upon for a second opinion, I don't know that this is a conclusion that the developers have already reached. This is the design and model we were showed and asked to comment on, and I happen to have worked on a lot of car projects and enjoy enthusing about this (car upgrades :)!) Sorry if this is annoying to you.

 

I have additional notes should you like to hear them if you are still accepting feedback. I understand that criticism may not be what we all want to hear, but it's what has lead to some of the better changes to the game in the past. :) Hopefully we can all work together to make a system that can make this the change to cars that the game has been begging for.

Edited by Kim Jong Un

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8 minutes ago, Kim Jong Un said:

I'm answering the call on the post to over-think it, so this is the feedback that I have to offer. I was also consulted on the original implementation of vehicles and maintenance by RJ, so I'll happily provide this again for vehicle upgrades with suggestions and work-arounds. I and others are not part of the development team. While I am grateful for having participated and called upon for a second opinion, I don't know that this is a conclusion that the developers have already reached. This is the design and model we were showed and asked to comment on, and I happen to have worked on a lot of car projects and enjoy enthusing about this (car upgrades :)!) Sorry if this is annoying to you.

 

I have additional notes should you like to hear them if you are still accepting feedback. I understand that criticism may not be what we all want to hear, but it's what has lead to some of the better changes to the game in the past. :) Hopefully we can all work together to make a system that can make this the change to cars that the game has been begging for.

You're taking 3-400 words to say very simple things and digging in your heels for some reason.

 

Please, some brevity.

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I think in a zombie world where you can be pulled through a window and eaten by zombies creates a need for quick solutions to offset the daily threat of death.... Many of these solutions will *NOT* be optimal in terms of vehicle design where : weight, handling, visibility, etc. are concerned.... They are merely ways to stay alive in a pinch...

 

If you zombie proof your vehicle with improper tools with less than optimal skills, in an even less than optimal environment, under constant threat with little to no sleep.... things will get overlooked, and it absolutely will not be perfect...

 

At least until someone acquires the skills, time, and material to produce good quality components.... None of which a starting level character will possess. Which brings us to the next possibility....

 

I expect that any non-skilled (metalwork/fabrication) character will produce things that look and fit horribly, and are barely useful in terms of the trade off between armor vs. vehicle stats...

 

IMO, this is fitting in terms of realism where we should remember that we're talking about dentists, accountants, policemen who are all skilled in a profession which is *NOT* vehicular armor fabrication...

 

Should this stop them from attempting these things to improve their odds at surviving.... absolutely not!!!

I think this is the core of the game.....  to learn to survive by acquiring the skills and material to accomplish projects such as these...

 

Compare in terms of a couple planks over a window vs. properly installed metal bars....  Anyone can bang up some planks, and they will barely keep anything out.... but a skilled metal fabricator can create something that could contain a lion or bear...

 

I hope that we will see some sort of tiered progression in terms of skill/quality... but not without balance (more on this below)

 

 

Basic things to do to a survival vehicle in order of importance might resemble something like this :

1 - Do something to keep from getting yanked out of the window and eaten every time I drive somewhere

2 - Do something to keep the engine from getting damaged every time I run into something

3 - Do something to prevent my tires from getting punctured every time I drive off road

4 - Do something to improve reliability and keep it running at all costs (dual battery, larger fuel tank)

5 - Do something to increase storage capacity for looting runs

6 - Do something to prevent lights from getting smashed every time I run into something

 

Conversely, In a sandbox world where fuel is scarce, the list might be much shorter

1 - Remove everything to save weight and increase fuel economy

 

Since no vehicle is perfect for all purposes, stripping down a vehicle to improve fuel economy to extend usefulness in a fuel scarce world might be a decision for some people...  (no doors, panels, etc)

 

 

What I hope NEVER to see in this game is the "END ALL B.F.G. UPGRADE" that renders all other versions useless...  This is where other simple minded games end, where the last upgrade is simply the best of all worlds...  This IMO, will detriment replay-ability more than add to it...  The thing that adds to replay-ability is options.... options which have benefits and consequences.

 

That said.... I *HOPE* that the highest armor upgrade has the worst fuel economy and visibility among other trade-offs to truly make it an option instead of a linear path to the game killing End All B.F.G. Upgrade...

 

 

 

 

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I initially was looking at vehicle armour because it was one of the first things brought up when we announced vehicles and kept on been asked for throughout development. It also linked in nicely with our other proposed attachments to vehicles (bullbars, ploughs etc) and could use the same code attachment system.

 

We’ve gone through a few iterations internally and the screenshot posted in the Thursdoid is the path we’re looking to go down.

 

Stylistically I’ve tried to keep it “real worldy” but with some artistic license since a lot of people want to go full on Mad Max style which, really isn’t in keeping with PZ’s art and game design but does provide some nice forms and “cool” looking vehicles. This won’t stop people in the future from doing their own thing and putting billions of spikes everywhere! :P

 

Reference came from a number of sources, some obvious (there’s a plethora of zombie survival vehicle design online!) to some less obvious.

 

It’s from one of these less obvious sources that the much debated wheel coverings were taken from; a real world source where practical reasons for covering the wheels and still having them functional literally mean life and death. Namely homemade, improvised, armoured vehicles used by militias in the Iraq and Syrian wars. I also found some examples of Ukrainian and vehicles made in some of the African wars.

 

I won’t post them all (there’s a whole r/ reddit devoted to improvised, armoured vehicles as well as google searches) but here’s a few that influenced some of my early iterations, including the wheel coverings.

 

dyufubbt5n9y.jpg

 

17031790.jpg

 

xaUHEe7.jpg

 

The overall affect is too extreme for PZ but gave me a good starting point.

 

My intention was for the armour was to only represent the reinforcement of parts but people seem to be reading each part “as is”, so a sealed window would restrict the drivers view more than a slatted one, which wasn’t my intent. A sealed window would for all intent and purposes be the same as a slatted window with no more advantage or penalty; this is something we can discuss internally depending on what pro’s and cons we settle on for armouring the vehicle and whether we want to go quite so literal.

 

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1 hour ago, martingee said:

conflict zone stuff

 

The problem with these is that, yes, aesthetically they don't match PZ because they pack too much flair and look too professional. Think function, think about whats actually important to protect on/in a car. Maybe you are trying to get past the national guard/bandits? They'll try to take out your engine block if not you outright, so weld a thick plate on the engine compartment. You can always duck, there's no time to be fancy with the windshield. It doesn't cover the entirety of it but it does the job. It doesn't need to be perfect, it just needs to stop a 7.62 or two. Extra time? Weld onto the center of the front doors. Maybe weld a back panel so you don't catch a round to the back of the head if you have the time or material.

 

Maybe zombies are the major threat and not people to you? That chain link for the front works just fine, but I would not bet my life on it. Those spot welds may not hold when you hit a zombie at 90 mph+ and it doesn't exactly go over the top. Why not have an up-tier it and compliment it with rebar after a while?


If I may add one more thing, there's a real risk of being too safe in armored vehicles. I should not just breathe a sigh of relief as soon as I get in my death-wagon. Maybe put in a trade-off system for components? I have a zombie proof car but it can not stop bullets. I have an armored vehicle but all that armor plating makes it harder to open the doors by that much a margin that I cant just rapidly open and run out in an emergency or just straight out starve. Having a car with both attributes can leave you semi-protected to both but still susceptible. Maybe risk mitigation is all you were after? You'll do great either way, this is just some input.

Edited by sharkstertheshark

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