Olvand is a little multiplayer sandbox RPG, where the players live in self-built towns and can go on all kinds of adventures together. Imagine living with your friends in a small town in the mountains, or creating a new group of friends in a pub in the metropole you all live in. There will be several minigames the inhabitants of a server can play together, among which will be combat based games like King of the Hill or Capture the Flag. You will be able to play against other people in your city, or as a city against another city, or as a whole server against another server. The combat works with self-built guns, in which all kinds of powers can be combined to create unique effects. You can sign up to be a tester on olvand.com.

Some pictures of what I want to add in the future:

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Building a little town together A fishing contest Mining for materials
Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Olvand's new cave director, pt. II

0 comments by Woseseltops on Dec 27th, 2014

Hi all! Alright, [last time] I talked about how the new AI director in caves tries to estimate the stress levels of the people inside, in many ways similar to how it happens in Valve's Left 4 Dead. However, Olvand's caves are unlike L4D in that they are randomly generated, and populated with randomly generated monsters, so it needs a new way to respond to all this stress knowledge. That's the topic of this week's blogpost.

The secret structure in caves
For the players, caves (hopefully) look like one long coherent string of rooms and corridors that are completely random each time. However, under the hood there's a lot of hidden structure, as in reality a cave is nothing more than a collection of blocks like these:

The cave generator just knows really well how to order these blocks, as I explained here. To transform one such block into a room or corridor people can walk around in, there are what we'll call blockmaps. This is one of the blockmaps for a simple corridor from south to north:

Each brown pixel corresponds to a rock tile in the game. Building up a cave for the player thus is nothing more than picking a blockmap for each block, having a look where the rocks are, and putting these in the level.

Adding the enemies
But as you probably already noticed there are more, differently colored pixels in blockmap. These have a number of purposes, like where chests should be, where lights should be, where olbs should be, etc. Today, we're interested in the red ones, which are the enemy spawn points. So when the cave director wants to spawn some enemies, all it has to do is (1) looking up in what block the player is, (2) looking up what blockmap was used to create that block, (3) looking up where the enemy spawn points are in the blockmap and (4) communicating to all clients that enemies ares spawning right there.

So our director now knows how the players feel, and what would be good places to spawn enemies. And furthermore, as I explained last time, I want to alternate calm and stressful moments, to keep the game interesting. How can we achieve that with the knowledge we have?

As it works right now, the cave director has three main stages: relax, building and climax. When you enter an empty cave, it will be in the building stage. In this stage, small 'teams' of monsters are spawned everywhere. They start out pretty easy, but gradually get more tough as you stay longer in the building mode. This is to make sure that sooner or later, everybody's stress level will increase. Once the mean stress level of the player's go over a certain (to be determined) threshold, the director goes into climax state, pushing the difficulty and monster spawn frequency up another step, until a second, higher threshold is reached. The director then goes into relax mode, where nothing new is spawned, and waits until the estimated stress is back to zero again... and then it starts all over.

As you can imagine, this whole algorithm gives me quite a lot of virtual knobs to turn. Turning knobs is basically what I'm doing right now: I play the game a lot, trying to figure out what parts of the game don't feel right, fixing these, and try again. I hope to tell you about some successful tweaks in two weeks!

If you want more development, see [twitter] or [facebook]. If you want to be a tester, you can subscribe on[olvand.com].

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Post comment Comments  (160 - 170 of 399)
FahriAuditore Jan 19 2013, 9:20am says:

hey dude if you add the demo version it will be great :D

+2 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 19 2013, 12:51pm replied:

The demo version? I don't know anything about a demo version, are you sure you're commenting on the right game? :P

+2 votes   reply to comment
FahriAuditore Jan 19 2013, 11:18pm replied:

oh srry that my friend.. he want to play ovland that's why

+2 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 20 2013, 3:05am replied:

Ah, I see :). I'm currently doing closed pre-alpha testing; I invite people in small groups. If you/your friend wants an invite, you can subscribe on olvand.com.

+1 vote   reply to comment
shiprocker Jan 18 2013, 9:50am says:

I have been tracking this for a long time. I would def want an invite too :D

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 19 2013, 12:51pm replied:

Of course, I added you to the list :).

+2 votes   reply to comment
RajanB Jan 17 2013, 12:26pm says:

Thanks for the ALPHA INVITE!! Can't wait to play when i've finished my work! :p



+1 vote     reply to comment
marcjac Jan 17 2013, 2:25am says:

Really good. Please invite marcjac1@wp.pl

+2 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 19 2013, 12:52pm replied:

Thanks! You're already on the list ;).

+2 votes   reply to comment
Johnnydjent Jan 10 2013, 11:54am says:

Looking forward to this, I love the concept!

+2 votes     reply to comment
nsansa Jan 10 2013, 11:01am says:

Hey woeseseltops remember me? Just saying i registered on the website as callen@mysgbis.net

+2 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 11 2013, 9:53am replied:

Hi, yes, I looked up your address and it indeed is on the list. Thanks for your interest!

+1 vote   reply to comment
Telekinetixx Jan 9 2013, 2:18am says:

I would definitely love to join :D

+2 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Jan 10 2013, 10:50am replied:

Great, I'll add you to my list, so you'll be in one of the groups I 'll invite somewhere in the future!

+2 votes   reply to comment
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Released Aug 18, 2012
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Highest Rated (5 agree) 10/10

Looks really interesting and really needs a good playerbase!

Oct 8 2012, 8:30am by fastfire10

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