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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsUndergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
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HSI
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« on: February 06, 2018, 11:20:05 PM »


Undergrowth
an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
(check out our Hand Shake LeftPatreonHand Shake Right for even more info!)

For: Cross-Platform PC - requires OpenGL 3.x

Developed by some guy...
Hi, I'm Dmetri! I'm a self-taught programmer who has been coding for around ~11 years and I'm a nobody in the game industry (for now!) I'm currently the sole member of Hyper Salt Interactive, the studio behind Undergrowth. I'm doing the programming and art for Undergrowth - I have a lot of experience in art and design and I'm confident in producing some high quality art at the polishing phase (for now it's just 2 minute placeholder stuff). Fortunately, even though I'm a solo dev, I have a thick skin, very sharp listening skills, and a strong dedication doing what needs to be done to make this the best game it can be.

I'm also quite friendly so if you want to comment or ask a question, go for it! Hand Thumbs Up Left
I've been told I give useful feedback and advice to other devs, so don't be shy if you need a hand.

On an engine built from scratch...
Undergrowth is built on a custom engine that's been developed with the D Programming Language over the past several months. I use SDL2 for input and the client window, Fmod for sound, and I'm working with OpenGL directly for rendering.

I've chosen this route for several reasons:
Blink I wanted tight control over my graphics pipeline and needed direct access to OpenGL
Well, hello there! I wanted to put in a lot of support for modders
Waaagh! I didn't want to learn the ins and outs of a 3rd party product just so I'd understand how to circumvent half of its features
Gomez I enjoy building game engines

About Undergrowth

What's the gameplay like?
Fun! But to be more specific...
At the beginning of the game you have nothing, you'll need to explore your map for resources. Chop trees for wood, mine rock for stone, harvest wild plants for food and seeds, etc. During the day you need to eat, you'll need to defend yourself from enemies, and you'll need to keep your morale up to remain productive and to fuel your nighttime adventures. You have limited energy and when you're tired you'll need to sleep - in a safe place! As your body rests you gain access to your spiritual form where you can hone a wide range of magical abilities from healing small wounds to raising continents up from the depths! Over time you'll craft better tools and more impressive structures and draw together other lost souls into a community that both rely on your resources and will help you with your work. Although getting the basics done is simple, you'll have to strategically cultivate new crops, discover the keys to your crush's heart, and forge the finest armor to stand a chance against the ultimate challenge!

Why does this game need to exist?
Undergrowth is the scratching of an itch. For a long time I've wanted to play a game that combines farming sims like Harvest Moon and Stardew Valley with survival games like Don't Starve and for it to have sandbox/world-building and procedural generation along the lines of Minecraft and Terraria. I want to play games that have the charm of the SNES era of gaming, but I also want it to be much more sophisticated than those games could ever become with their limitations. The genres these games belong to have so much overlap, but many of their conventions would outright break a game that tried to merge them all naively.

I've worked very hard to design fun and creative solutions for where these genres intersect at bad angles and turned each into very cool features.

Status!?
I'm aiming for a playable alpha by the end of the year (2018)!
Most of the core map and core UI pieces are done, a lot of art and content needs to be translated from my design notes to be playable, so it might take another year or two thereafter for the full release.

Core Features:
  • A story of mystery, humour, and intrigue
  • Destructible 3D voxel terrain with dynamic lighting/shadows and a 2D pixel art aesthetic
  • Expandable landmass, 16+ biomes
  • Gather resources and manage items
  • Deep crafting/cross-breeding/cooking options
  • Changing seasons and day/night cycle
  • Eccentric communities of potential helpers that rely on you
  • Progression via crafting tools, using magic, building structures, and consuming food
  • Survive by producing enough to eat, building a safe haven, and fighting enemies for you and your community
  • Play solo or with friends
  • Equip items and customize your character
  • Intuitive mod API (Lua & YAML/JSON) an official mod creation wizard/resource mod is planned for release

Early Development Screenshots:
Here are some screens to show how the terrain functions. Shadows and textures will go up in quality in the coming months Crazy
I'm hoping to put up the lifecycle of a plant and some characters walking around soon!


Thanks for your support!
Even just viewing this topic you've ticked up the view count and given me a little piece of motivation to keep going strong! If you've told a friend about this project, or dropped me a line, or left a comment, you're helping more than you know, and I appreciate it so much!
And if you're truly an angel, you may have checked out the additional info over at Patreon and considered, maybe, possibly, donating a dollar or two to give me the option to spend more time on completing Undergrowth - even the consideration warrants a big thank you from the bottom of my heart. If you do decide to donate, that kind of support for a game in pre-alpha is something I plan to repay many times over - helping someone start from nothing deserves big rewards down the line.
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HEY YOU, YEAH YOU!
Check out my devlog: Undergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
Wink You won't regret it.
whistlerat
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« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2018, 12:48:30 AM »

Quote
Undergrowth is the scratching of an itch.

Not gonna lie, that's one of my itches too. This ticks so many boxes for me that the millenial in me has come out and cannot even.

I love the visuals already. Very clean and clear and stylish. Can't wait to see what the living things in the world look like - I assume you'll have an in-game avatar that you move around and interact with the world via, like a third-person minecraft? With AI-controlled helpers/villagers/etc to enlist and work with? That's the vibe I've got so far from your description. Diggin' it. Hand Metal Right
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HSI
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« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2018, 01:41:59 AM »

Thanks for the kind words!

I assume you'll have an in-game avatar that you move around and interact with the world via, like a third-person minecraft? With AI-controlled helpers/villagers/etc to enlist and work with?
You're pretty much spot on. NPCs can help the player gather resources and assist with their specialized skills as long as they're provided for. I've got rudimentary code for an avatar in already, but not item equipping, so I'll post up some screens of that after you can put clothes on him!
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HEY YOU, YEAH YOU!
Check out my devlog: Undergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
Wink You won't regret it.
whistlerat
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« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2018, 02:28:18 AM »

Sounds great! Looking forward to seeing it. You thinking about avatar customisation at some point, beyond clothes I mean? Gender, skin colour, that kind of thing.
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« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2018, 07:23:50 AM »

In short, yes! Of course!

Player character sprites are going to have the same amount of basic customization as NPCs'. You can choose your gender, skin tone, hairstyle, hair color, and then equipment on top of that.

At this stage it's up in the air whether or not other features will be customizable... I have nothing against putting in eye color/face shape, etc, such things aren't difficult to include... but I personally feel overwhelmed when character customization screens give me too many options Epileptic so if I go down the path of allowing customization of very fine details, I might get players to make several of those choices outside a character customization screen.
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HEY YOU, YEAH YOU!
Check out my devlog: Undergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
Wink You won't regret it.
whistlerat
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« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2018, 08:22:04 AM »

You don't have to go that fine-grained for the customisation considering your distant 3rd person view, the things you mentioned in your first list sound perfect Smiley
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« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2018, 03:19:30 AM »

I've put some shorts on the player character, and some hair, so I don't have to keep cutting his nakedness out of screens, lol.
His animations are still really rough at this point, but development is coming along nicely Grin



I've been slacking off a little because I've discovered twitter: https://twitter.com/Hyper_Salt
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HEY YOU, YEAH YOU!
Check out my devlog: Undergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
Wink You won't regret it.
whistlerat
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« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2018, 05:29:08 AM »

How is this going??  Grin Grin
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