Tag Archives: stranded deep

Experiments

As mentioned in our last update post, we’re going to be running a new ‘experimental’ build alongside the stable version of Stranded Deep very soon. We’ll keep you posted when the first experimental build goes live (hopefully next week sometime) and we’ll post some instructions on how to opt in. But for now, we thought we’d update you with some details of the immediate plans.

The first thing on the experimental agenda is moving over to Unity 5.

One of the biggest sales pitches of Unity 5 is the new fully deferred renderer and physically based shading. The switch to a proper deferred renderer will be great, but unfortunately not as easy as pressing the “upgrade” button. There’s a lot of custom stuff going on in Stranded Deep which was necessary to get the most out of the engine we’ve been working with. If you’ve been following our blog posts for a while, you’ll know that we are already doing physically based shading along with various other effects like faking skybox global illumination and a lot of different depth techniques for our effects. So in visual terms, the engine upgrade won’t really do that much for now. But hopefully later on we can integrate even more graphical features like dynamic global illumination, screen space reflections and such.

There’s a few new features that should improve performance though. The physics engine has been upgraded both in speed and the quantity of objects it can handle. Stranded Deep uses a lot of physics so this should be a great improvement. There’s also the new UI system that we’ll be transitioning over to. We haven’t had much of a chance to look at it, but hopefully there’s some performance to be gained. The current system we’re using has some annoying workarounds and a fairly significant performance overhead. Every bit counts 🙂

After we’ve ported over, we’ll get back into the guts of the game. The construction system was in the middle of a rework before the last hotfix so that’ll be high on the list. We’ve got a lot of great ideas for new systems and they all centre around the theme of scavenging. We really want to incorporate more scavenging for more unique structures and tools. We’ll fill you in with more details when we get to these, but here’s a few teasers of some concepts —

construction_ideas_2a

construction_ideas_2

There’s a heap of other systems that will be getting re-worked as well and we’ll keep you informed as it happens. Starting from this post, we’re going back to fortnightly blog updates as mentioned in the last update. If you’re not keen on trying out the experimental build first hand, this will be a good way to keep up with the progress of the game and see what we’re working on.

That’s it from us for now. We’ll have a hotfix coming out soon for the stable build and then stay posted for further info on the new experimental builds.

Stay Alive!
:: Beam Team

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CHECK IN

Just thought we should check-in to let everyone know we’re still here again! The launch went great and we are overwhelmed by the support and fantastic community that Stranded Deep has! Thank you all so much. We’ve decided to take a small break from the normal website updates while we put our heads down and focus on punching out as much content as we can in these early days. We’re also looking into a more dedicated website, so we’ll keep you posted on that one.

In the meantime, you can always chat to us us on twitter: @BEAMTeamGames And also on the steam community board: http://steamcommunity.com/app/313120/discussions/ We love hearing from you 🙂

 

Stay Alive!
:: Beam Team

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Stay Alive

Yes, we are still alive 😛 This month has been crazy!

We want to apologize for dropping off the radar this month. The response to the teaser trailer was amazing and we received a tonne of emails, tweets and comments! We don’t get time to reply to every comment and email immediately, but we do see every single one and we’re doing our best to get back to you. It’s something we’re working on and we’re trying to find a good balance between the time we spend with the community vs. the time we spend actually developing the game. Most of our fans understand that, but some new ones might not know how much we appreciate their support and patience 🙂

So to answer the most popular question at the moment – yes, we are releasing this January 🙂

The date will be announced very shortly!

 

Stay Alive!
:: Sam

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Teaser

After two years, we’re finally ready to show-off our first teaser trailer for Stranded Deep.
We are incredibly humbled by the response of our growing Stranded Deep survivors, so we hope you enjoy watching it us much as we did making it.

Without further ado…

Let us know which parts got you excited the most?

 

#stayalive
:: Beam Team

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Two by two

A lot’s been happening since the last big update and it’s hard to put it all into one showcase so we like to break things up a bit.

 

Lets Talk Animals and Biomes.

As a lot of our followers know, Stranded Deep is infinitely procedurally generated. Along with this generation, a variety of different biomes and habitats are also created that our animal system heavily relies on.

The conventional way to populate worlds in a lot of games is a “spawn in system” – a player triggers a zone or event and a spawning system kicks in. However, we’ve gone into a little more detail, creating a system that incorporates population, breeding, and territories. We really want to put emphasis on your resource management and the visual impact you can have on environments; You can strip an island bare for wood, extinguish the crab population, eradicate reefs of fish, and even push back shark territories.

Crab_Killer
To survive in Stranded Deep you have to be smart and care for the environment, giving it time to heal and replenish or even aid in its development. Sure, you can think short term and stock up on crab meat, but long term when your fridge runs dry and there’s nothing to populate the crab holes things may get a little scary.

 

Sharks.

No ocean survival adventure is complete without them. We’ve spent a lot of time developing sharks behaviours and one of the biggest challenges was balancing how they’re portrayed. Let me run through some of these behaviours:

Sharks are assigned territories within biomes and are continuously exploring these areas as they would in the real world. You can find tiger and reef sharks scavenging the shallows and great whites ruling the depths.
You might randomly stumble upon a shark’s course or you could lure them with careless activities such as spear fishing or bleeding out.

Shark Raft_wm

All sharks have different traits, some are more curious than others whilst some are completely frightened of you. If a shark is interested in you during an encounter, it is likely to start circling, trying to get an idea of what it’s confronting. It might lose interest and continue about its day or depending on the circumstance, build aggression for an attack. What happens from here is something we wish players to experience first hand. We believe we’ve depicted sharks as realistically as possible, not as careless killing machines but as the curious creatures they are.

This is just a small glimpse of Stranded Deep’s wildlife; birds, turtles, stingrays, sea snakes, the list goes on and we might get to cover some more in a future update. With the help of Early Access we can continue to balance and develop new exciting systems that will all impact your survival.

 
That’s it for this update. We get asked a lot of questions about hunting and wildlife so hopefully this gives you a bit of an insight. We appreciate everyone’s support and absolutely love reading your thoughts! Exciting times ahead during these final preparations before release 🙂
Be sure to stick around for more updates!

 
:: The Team at Beam

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A few weeks back i put together a quick speed art trying out some new techniques. Our many Russian friends over on the Stranded Deep RU page showed a lot of interest when it became our twitter banner so we thought it worth posting a higher resolution for those interested.

Stranded deep Speed Art 1080p

 

We would love to see fan art from our many talented followers sent through our contact page or even tweet us @BEAMTeamGames

Be sure to check back for more frequent updates
-Ben

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kn064j.jpg

So.. we realise we missed our 11th update. Things have been pretty hectic. We’d also like to break out of that routine, so we’re changing things up.. Instead of having to wait for one MEGA update every month, we’re going to commit to smaller, fortnightly updates and see how we go from there. Yay! Awesome, right? Well to put it simply, there will be weeks where we will have really interesting and exciting content to share with you.. and there will be weeks that have been wasted researching, implementing and testing something that turned out rubbish. But either way, we’ll be keeping you in the loop letting you know how we’re moving forward.

So.. onto this weeks update!

 

Gooey Stuff

We have always been designing Stranded Deep with a minimalistic GUI in mind, but not to the extent where it would compromise gameplay. Unfortunately, sometimes it’s hard to find a good balance between not breaking immersion and having good variety and room to grow. We had been working with a temporary rotary style menu for the inventory, but found that it was too limiting. So for now, we have a traditional slot inventory and some minimalistic context menus for crafting and building…

Inventory

Crafting

The components of the UI are still temporary placeholders and will more than likely change and improve as the game evolves, but it’s working well and gives us a lot more freedom to add more combinations and complexity in the future. As the UI is very minimalistic and there is no crafting or building menu as such, we’ve integrated some helper functionality into the crosshair. The crosshair is normally a semi-transparent dot to help center your vision when you need it without being distracting, but it will also display different symbol hints for things like being able to open context menus.

 

Whats Under The Hood

A beta of the next version of our game engine, Unity 5, has been released. This doesn’t mean much for us at the moment, but it does promise some performance improvements. One of those improvements is an upgraded physics engine, which is great because we use a lot of physics!

We’ve also run into an annoying hitch with the current version we’re using. There’s a fantastic problem where the game runs great in the editor, but the standalone version’s performance is cut in half. So we’re in the process of testing a standalone build with a more recent version to see if the problem has been fixed. Fun, fun 🙂

 

Well that’s it for now. We appreciate all your support and how vocal you were when we missed an update 😛 So we hope you like hearing from on us on a more regular basis from now on.

See you soon 🙂

 

Stay Alive!

:: Sam

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Lets Get Physical

Well it’s about time for an update!

A lot has been happening over the past few months and we’ve been hard at work. I’ll start with the crafting.

The crafting is working great! It’s refreshingly unique and the gameplay flows really well. I think players are really going to enjoy it. If it seems like we’re not telling you much about it, it’s because we’re not! 😛 As mentioned in my previous post, since the start of Stranded Deep’s development a few other projects have appeared with similar themes. We’re really excited about the interactivity in SD and feel it’s a really important and unique aspect to our game, and we’d like to keep it that way. I will say that it feels great as a developer to realise I’ve just spent the last 15 mins I was supposed to be ‘testing’ the game running around searching trees for coconuts and trying to catch a crab haha.

A big plus for the project’s development has been the recent integration of Marmoset’s Skyshop for Unity. It’s taken the visual quality of the game to another level! Like most Unity users, we can’t recommend Skyshop enough. The workflow is great and the results are even better. Here’s a preview of just a few of the tools you’ll find in Stranded Deep…

Stranded Deep Items

All in all, the interactive side of things, and the game as a whole, is well on it’s way. Now it’s just a matter of punching out more great assets until we can’t think of anymore!

Before I go, we’d just like to say how much we really appreciate our fans patience. Ben and myself are perfectionists, and realise that our fans deserve nothing less. We realise that the project has overshot it’s original timeline. We’re sorry, but we wanted it to be better, and we knew we could make it better with more time. We’ve received a lot of criticism regards our lack of feedback. We’re sorry for that too. Unlike our AAA competitors, there’s just the 2 of us.. for everything. We have really appreciated the strong feedback from the community and realise that a lot of people want this game to be just as great as we do. When we’re slow to reply or post updates, rest assured that it’s because we’re ‘head’s down-ass up’ absolutely buried in our work ..not off at the beach (I wish! 😛 )

:: Sam

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