New inventory interface framework
I established a new inventory interface framework by writing a new logical layer on top of the current system. By doing this we can now save a lot of coding and designing time. The system is generic which means UI elements are built on the fly and asynchronously. For example, we load sprites from the pool if they already exist in the memory, else we load them asynchronously from the resources – disk. Everything feels seamless now, which was the primary goal in mind while recreating the system.
New logical layer introduced new item manipulation techniques while having your inventory open:
- By hovering over an item, a description panel shows which holds information about your item such as item name, description and quality;
- By dragging one item onto another one, swapping or merging becomes possible;
- If you right click on an item, you can split it if there is enough room in your inventory;
- If you left click while holding left-shift, you can transfer an item instantly to another inventory panel.
Harvesting world resources
World resources such as stone veins, metal veins, niter veins, crystals and trees now have a harvesting feature – items (wooden logs, ores) now drop while mining/harvesting the resource which significantly improves resource gathering feature of Floatlands:
We started adding some more critters to the game. These will be harmless small animals and robots that will add some more life to the game. So far I’ve modeled, rigged and animated the hermit crab and the spherical robot. I also added a missing animation to the rabbit.
I have prepared some undergrowth foliage to make the nature more varied and interesting. They’re made in a similar way the grass, bushes and treetops are made, with alpha transparent textures on planes.
Roaming around the world can sometimes feel a bit lonely. So we decided to implement a companion to follow you and keep you company as you play. Companion won’t just follow you arround and be useless, they’ll be a valuable asset early in the game. For instance, they’ll help you gather resources with their set of utilities. They’ll even provide the source of light during the night!
As with any concept design task I’m given, I usualy sketch a bunch of ideas on a small collage. In this case we then printed it and everyone in the office picked their 3 favourites.
Based on that decision I combined the elements of the companions everyone picked and came up with the following concept. It’s also important that the companion has elements that you can find in the game, to give it the unique aesthetic look.