Hello dog lovers!
Welcome to our latest doggo filled devlog! In this one, we will be going over the progress made in April and what to look forward to this month.
Firstly, the main focus for this month was a revamp of interior lighting. We felt like the experience wasn't as cohesive when going from building interiors to the rest of the world. It created almost two distinct lighting environments which we wanted to unify.
To do that, we first trashed our simple lighting setup and started to pick the kind of light (either spot of point) based on the type of fixture. We then would add a second light per fixture that would affect the area around it like the roof. After that we would add an area light near the floor and sometimes walls to simulate external light coming in. Lastly, we would bake a reflection probe for the interior. All these changes were made because we needed a performant template that we could put in each interior. Below are a couple samples.
Performance and Bugs
Another big focus for us this month was performance. While it is still ongoing, we have already managed to massively improve stability and most importantly FPS. The primary way we did this was leveraging our boxed off building designs. Most of the lights in the scene are located in interiors with the exteriors mostly lit by sun light. As a result we can effectively create our own light level of detail (LOD) system. We check based on a light's distance to the doggo and then depending on how far we turn on and off light and lighting features like shadows to prevent them from adding performance costs when the player is too far away to see them.
Speaking of LOD, we have added it for various buildings with a lot of details as well as bake and atlas the buildings to lower the cost down further. Props and other details have been added to the LOD system so that they are culled from rendering when at distance even when occlusion can still see them but being too far for the player to notice. Combined this has jumped the FPS by over 50% allowing for it to run on even more PCs then before.
Lastly, here is a highlight of some bugs/requests you all found either at the conventions or mentioned in previous demos:
- Make Angry Old Man drop an item when defeated
- Allow begging to convert from sit to stand up
- Allow players to adjust zoom of camera with mouse wheel up and down
- Fixed Beg detection for Friendly Old Man
- Improve physics interaction on balls and inventory
- Fixed the Vet getting knocked out on occasion during respawn
We wanted to wrap up by providing a little update of what can be expected this month. Dog breed selection is well under way and we currently are working on adding our first new breed a Doberman!
Here is a brief sample:
We are hoping to add more breeds in addition to more building interiors and a new adversary in the forest this month!
Thanks for reading! If you have any interest in signing up to our closed beta you can still access the sheet on our discord: https://discord.gg/3mQnjNSMcW. If you liked what you saw, please consider wishlisting on Steam as it helps out a lot! Thanks again and see you all in the next one!