Post news RSS TAR 1st Update of 2018

1st 2018 Dev update: preview of preliminary castle, new shaders/graphics, scene transitions, an introduction to fatigue, & more!

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Long time no see! Despite our silence, we have been working away. Now that we’ve released v0.1, we begin our journey to the next version. Here’s what we’ve been working on so far:


(WIP. Battlements still needed atop round stair towers)

Preliminary view of the Great Hall

The Town Castle is coming along, but is quite sparse at the moment. The layout of rooms, although not quite historical (not that we were going for that), is basically complete.


We’ve been dabbling in shaders these past few months and managed to get some things working, though all still WIP. Have a look:

  • Eye: The iris is now drawn right on the same object as the eyeball! This allows the specular shines to seamlessly blend from eyeball to iris, unlike before. Previously, the iris was overlaid as a separate object on top of the eyeball.

  • Splatmap: Using Unity’s terrain painting is essentially what this is, but we wanted to customize it so we made our own.

Notice the floor, walls, and ceiling are blending! (This image has been brightened.)

  • Interior Blend (Triplanar?): The idea behind this shader is that it interpolates between 3 textures based upon the vertex normals! This works well for cave or dungeon corridors.

Notice the improved edges where the water meets land.

  • Water: Previously, we overlaid several planes (2 planes scrolling in different directions, and a refractive plane) to achieve the look of the old water. Now with the new shader, it’s all done in with a single plane. Jon has also added fading alpha to the water shader with the fog distance:

  • Glass: we created a “simple” glass shader with distortions similarly to the water shader, so there’s only one glass object per pane. Previously, there was one for glass & one for refraction.
  • Grass: Jon has also been experimenting with parting/interactive foliage shader. Currently, grass/ferns/etc will bulge & bend when player one moves into/nearby.
  • Crest: Started a shader for displaying crests/images onto shields and surcoats.


Another thing Jon has been working on is improving scene transitions and fancying up the loading screen. Here are some improvements:

  • Loading messages will change if loading takes a long time
  • Loading messages will be less likely to repeat in a play session now
  • Fade in/outs are smoother
  • Added a ‘quickload’ option for scene transitions that are quite short such as initial splash to title screen, just fades in and back out, once loaded.

For other Unity users out there, Jon found that even when using additive asynchronous scene loading there’d be a hitch. This is due to many Awake/Start calls executing at once, which are on the main thread, after the scene load has finished…

For scenes such as the Town, this really increases loading time and he has been working on some solutions. He'll share it once he has something.


Started the basic Fatigue system that we’ve been thinking about for a while. Maybe you noticed the thin yellow bar under stamina that never did anything? Well, now as you consume stamina, you will slowly fatigue, which will temporarily limit your maximum stamina, until it’s recovered by eating or sleeping. Once fully fatigued, you will pass out temporarily.

We don’t want to turn the game into another survival game, but wanted to increase incentive to bringing food on journeys and making sleeping more beneficial.


  • Book UI now only displays one page at a time… It was taking a long time to edit books. At this point, time is of the essence. :/
  • Console can now be opened in any scene, even in the title screen.

And we’ll leave you with this:

Marvel at what this entails…

Just a quick reminder, this is progress towards the next version, probably v0.2, so this is not in the active release, yet.

Have a good one!

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