Weekly Newsletter [#25]

Introduction

Greetings, friends! Project Genom continues to develop and grow, and it’s time for us to report on the progress over the last week.

Software

As before, the most relevant and time-consuming part of the development is still the software part and the code. Everyone who joined the PTS testing can notice the game client updates both lesser ones and large and important, that happen once in a couple of days. We constantly improve the network and the server stability and fix the found bugs at the same time. In general, the game stability level is significantly higher than the one of the previous version, but we face some flaws thus not able to state that our work in this direction is over.

Quest system and all accompanying mechanics continue to be actively managed and developed.

This week we created the Artificial Intelligence for Raiders wielding pistols, based on the AI for Raider mobs wielding rifles

We have completed the Artificial Intelligence for the Trog mobs this week. Each type of Trogs now has unique behavior and attack features, unique combat style and specific interaction with other Trogs.

World

We’re still finalizing Avalon. This week, we’ve completed our work on the world edges. Now it’s become impossible for players to cross them. We paved many new roads and created miles of rivers. The snow-covered location with ice lakes zone has been expanded. We improved the desert are and applied many changes to biomes and generation. A number of plants are added and modified.

Character

This week we began working on a high-poly model of the Dreadnought armor suit for female characters.

Our team has completed the low-poly in-game Mech model with normal map baking and AO. Work has begun on creating the diffuse map and masks to implement the model into the game.

Opponents

We have completed all animations for Raiders wielding pistols.

Conclusion

From the artistic point of view, the game is gradually approaching the level that we would like to see on the main servers. The project code still remains the major challenge. Without a stable game version, we can’t concentrate on the mechanics alone, but it’s impossible to import the content we’ve already created without them. We hope that with the help of PTS testing and your bug reports, soon we’ll be able to spend less time debugging, and more implementing and creating new mechanics.

If you missed the latest news but waited for the opportunity to participate in the early tests, we are pleased to repeat that the PTS testing is now open for our players. To take part in the test, you must have an activated copy of the game and follow the registration as described on this page:

http://steamcommunity.com/games/pgenom/announcements/detail/1448322996834571608

And, once again, we want to remind everyone considering purchasing the game that it’s still in its Alpha stage, and we don’t recommend buying it if you expect a full-fledged finished project. By purchasing the game now, you support the development and have an opportunity to see its early stages. If you want to enjoy a full game experience with the maximum number of game mechanics and no critical errors, we advise you to wait until the project enters the beta testing phase or even later.

Weekly Newsletter [#24]

Introduction

Greetings, friends! Project development is in its full swing, and the PTS testing shows an active participation welcoming everyone who wants to join it. Those who are more interested in the finished project and brief news on the development can read our weekly report on the work done.

Software

We are working on the network advancement. During this week, a lot of updates were uploaded to the PTS server, including updates improving the network stability, fixing servers crash, character initialization and improved authorization with the Steam API.

Our team is creating the quest system. In addition to implementing task system, quests require simultaneous work with the journal, tags in the world, map, interaction with NPCs and game objects, work with the database and other game parts, which makes this task quite complicated and time-consuming.

World

We are gradually approaching the stage when all the essential world content will be complete. At the moment, we are filling the remaining bare patches of the landscape with vegetation; we form rivers, lay down roads, expand some biomes, and finalize edges of the world.

Character

Our team added character animations for interaction with the ammo box.

Opponents

This week, we continued working on Raiders and added animation features upon interaction with objects in the environment.

We have finished modeling and texturing the Trogs.

Conclusion

We continue to work on the project, and the PTS testing proved to be helpful in many ways. Our players found and described a lot of critical bugs, and we are so very grateful to everyone who helps us improve the game. At the moment, our primary task is to improve the network and correct all the detected flaws.

If you missed the latest news but waited for the opportunity to participate in the early tests, we are pleased to repeat that the PTS testing is now open for our players. To take part in the test, you must have an activated copy of the game and follow the registration as described on this page:

http://steamcommunity.com/games/pgenom/announcements/detail/1448322996834571608

And, once again, we want to remind everyone considering purchasing the game that it’s still in its Alpha stage, and we don’t recommend buying it if you expect a full-fledged finished project. By purchasing the game now, you support the development and have an opportunity to see its early stages. If you want to enjoy a full game experience with the maximum number of game mechanics and no critical errors, we advise you to wait until the project enters the beta testing phase or even later.

Weekly Newsletter [#23]

Introduction

Greetings, friends! PTS are still open, and we continue to share the information about what we’ve managed to do over the past week.

PTS Update

As we mentioned in the previous report, PTS servers will be constantly updated until the new game version is released to the main servers. We’d like to mention the latest updates for all who don’t enter the PTS servers:

  • Ported the project to the UE4.16.3.
  • Fixed a bug with saving the character exit coordinates in the database.
  • Fixed a bug with saving the customization settings in the database.
  • Fixed a bug with weapon replication wielded by other characters.
  • Fixed most of the bugs causing the server to crash.
  • Fixed bugs with inventory items missing.
  • Prohibited dealing damage to other players.
  • Fixed a bug with the shield functioning.
  • Fixed a bug with servers crashing when building on Linux.
  • Added six new types of Hounds with unique behavior features to the test location.
  • Fixed a bug with mobs disappearing at a certain distance from the spawn point.

Software

Our team is improving network, as well as revising the authorization mechanism using the Steam SDK.

We’re working on the character progression system.

Quest system creation is in progress.

We’ve created the basic artificial intelligence for all types of Hounds.

World

We are working on the relic forest. The landscape is refined, new objects arecreated and set up for the generation.

This week, some textures of plants for the relic forest were created.

Our team has created a small story instance, Yers’s Workshop.

This week our team completed reworking the Dump instance.

EntrancetotheArenaisnow complete.

Character

The work on the creating retopology for the mech is almost complete.

This week, we’ve completed roll and grenade throw animations for the character.

Opponents

We’ve completed Raider animations this week.

Trogmodelingisstillin progress

Conclusion

Development goes on with no delays, the world is constantly growing and the network part is gradually improving. During this week, we received a lot of comments and feedback; you shared a number of interesting ideas and found new bugs, and we are so very grateful to all our players. If you missed the latest news, but very much waited for the opportunity to participate in the early testing, we are pleased to remind you that PTS testing is still open for our players. To participate in the test, you should have an activated copy of the game and complete the registration as described on the page:

http://steamcommunity.com/games/pgenom/announcements/detail/1448322996834571608

And, once again, we want to remind everyone considering purchasing the game that it’s still in its Alpha stage, and we don’t recommend buying it if you expect a full-fledged finished project. By buying the game now, you support the development and have an opportunity to see its early stages. If you want to enjoy a full game experience with the maximum number of game mechanics and no critical errors, we advise you to wait until the project enters the beta testing phase or even later.

Weekly Newsletter [#22]

Introduction

Hello, friends! We’ve prepared another traditional Weekly Newsletter, but first, we’d like to say a few words about the first results of PTS, which began on July 28.

PTS Early Results

First of all, we’d like to express our eternal gratitude to all players who treated the testing with due responsibility and overcame all the bugs, registration difficulties, lack of full English localization and other ‘joys’ of the Technical Alpha stage. A total of about 1,500 people entered the test servers. Some came just to support online for the stress test, many stayed in the project for a long time and still help to create the complete picture of the current state the new architecture and network parts are in. Thank you very much, friends!

Now about the game itself. Our players have explored many corners of the game world, tested all kinds of weapons and killed a myriad of test opponents. In addition to various small visual flaws, the testers were able to detect a number of significant errors related to the servers and database stability.

The first hours of the game revealed one serious network defect, which creates tangible lags even when a small number of players are playing. On the same day, we uploaded an update to the server, and it reduced the CPU load by three times. This quick fix allows us to make the first conclusions about the successful implementation of the project’s network part basis. Despite the remaining flaws and bugs, the network has become better, and the players’, NPCs’ and opponents’ load has decreased (compared to the current Steam version).

The second major flaw was the database error, which occasionally pops up when the client is disconnected or when switching between servers. The essence of this error lies in the incorrect data recording, which led to the customization settings being reset for several players, who subsequently lost items and experience. We’ll try to fix this error as soon as possible.

Other shortcomings were less serious. Some of them are already fixed, and we plan to fix the rest in the very near future.

Further Plans

Considering that PTS testing showed good performance terms of CPU load, now we can begin to implement the missing basic mechanics as designed. We’re fixing the flaws, and at the same time, we started working on the quest system. Once it is implemented, we can thoroughly work on the location details to adjust them for the main and the secondary quests, and well as to introduce missions and dialogues.

We’d like to point up that to the current game version update on Steam is planned immediately after we stabilize the PTS version and implement the most fundamental mechanics. We don’t want to delay the primary servers update, but it won’t be the best surprise for the players who don’t want to take part in the early testing if they discover the Technical Alpha without quests or maps.

PTS version of the game will be updated and remain accessible to all our players before the release of the new version on Steam. If you have an activated game version, you can become one of the testers at any time and help us searching for bugs. To participate in the PTS testing, follow the instructions on this page:

http://steamcommunity.com/games/pgenom/announcements/detail/1448322996834571608

We want to emphasize once again that the current testing is a technical test of a very early version of the updated project. It includes the game basis, and most of the planned mechanics are still absent. This testing primarily aims at people who want to help us finding critical bugs flaws in the network part of the project. We highly recommend not to buy our project for the sake of PTS tests. Please wait until the project enters the later stage, Beta stage or even release stage for a comfortable gameplay.

Software

Undoubtedly, most important task of this week was the preparation of the PTS version and correction of found critical bugs. We are still correcting errors, and our focus is on the debugging of the database and fixing all the remaining network flaws.

Our team is working on the character progression system.

This week, we started to create the quests system.

We added optimizations for the Lair that take a significant amount of load off the CPU and allow using more of them quantitatively on a single server.

The basic artificial intelligence for Young Hounds and the Observer.

World

Work has begun on the last major biome in the given area of Avalon. The vegetation of this area will be mostly similar to the forests of the Jurassic period, with predominating gymnosperms and fern species.

We created the search sketches for a number of the most important plant species to be present in the new biome. These species are very different from the Earth flora.

This week, our team finalized the initial personal cabin, which players can obtain by following the main quest.  The cabin is relatively small area and has only the most necessary accommodation. You will find out that the previous owner was far from being neat, so the cabin’s walls are dirty (but you can always clean them) and you can find a lot of interesting forgotten things in the cabin. As we already mentioned, we plan to introduce the cabin extension by changing wall blocks and adding new rooms.

We started editing the lighting for the Dump instance. As well as with the previous instance, the primary task is the dynamic day and night shift that we need to implement of this location. Also, we will add some small visual improvements.

Interface

We’ve updated the main menu background. It was done mainly to support the better visual representation of the character during customization.

Character

Our work on creating the high-poly model of a mech is nearing completion.

We’ve created rig, skin, and several animations for the robot, that will appear in the main menu. This robot is an important character in the universe that can be an assistant for players. It is found during one of the main quests. This robot will have a number of useful functions in addition to bad habits, thus expanding the player’s possibilities.

Opponents

Nest animations are complete.

We are still modeling the Trogs.

Game Design

Our team is working on the game items balance.

Conclusion

There were some bugs, but on the whole, the anticipated PTS testing launch went well. You have greeted the updated project with understanding and gave positive feedback, so we had another opportunity to believe that our gaming community is the best part of the project!

Despite the bugs you found, we can confidently plan the further rapid project development, and that we will update the Steam version of Project Genom soon. Testing revealed no insurmountable problems, so we can engage in expanding the game possibilities. We still have a lot of work to do, but together with you, we can do it in the shortest possible time!

And, once again, we want to remind everyone considering purchasing the game that it’s still in its Alpha stage, and we don’t recommend buying it if you expect a full-fledged finished project. By buying the game now, you support the development and have an opportunity to see its early stages. If you want to enjoy a full game experience with the maximum number of game mechanics and no critical errors, we advise you to wait until the project enters the beta testing phase or even later. The nearest PTS will also be the Alpha version and won’t present the game in its final state.

Start of the PTS servers

Introduction

Hello, friends! We are happy to announce that the promised PTS is about to be launched. This event is significant for the game and the team and will allow the further development to happen at an increased pace. Anyone who is interested in the project development and who to participate in testing the early Technical Alpha can read the instructions on accessing PTS below. Those who are not so interested in the early development stages can just skip today’s Newsletter.

We want to emphasize once again that the current testing is a technical test of a very early version of the updated project. It includes the game basis, and most of the planned mechanics are still absent. This testing primarily aims at people who want to help us finding critical bugs flaws in the network part of the project. Don’t expect to find quests, PvP, mechs, or space. But it’s the first opportunity to see the updated project alive for the first time in 8 months. We recommend waiting for later versions of the game to those who would like to enjoy gaming without searching for bugs on test locations.

Thanks to everyone who supports our team! We believe that from now on Project Genom is entering a new level, and we are glad that you can participate in this together with us.

PTS Access Instruction

To take part in PTS testing, you must have an activated copy of Project Genom in your Steam library. Additional DLC kits do not affect this test in any way. If there is no game in your library, and you did not purchase it, unfortunately, you won’t be able to take part in the testing. In this case, we highly recommend not to buy our project for the sake of PTS tests. Please wait until the project enters the final stage for a comfortable gameplay.

Forum Registration

If you already have a registered account on the game forum, you can skip this step.

If you have an activated game copy, you should visit the official game forum at https://pgenom.com/community You can also visit forum via top menu bar on the official website https://pgenom.com by selecting the appropriate item (Forum).

You will have to sign up on the forum. Just log in by entering your login if you’ve done this already (if you are not logged in now). If this is the first time you visit the forum, you should click on the “Log in or Sign up” text in the upper right corner of the page, or you can click on the big “Sign up now!” button below.

After clicking on one of the sign-up buttons, the following registration fields to be filled in will pop-up on top of the page:

  1. Enter your forum name or current email address you have access to in the “Your name or email address” field.
  2. Choose “No, create an account now” in the next step “Do you already have an account?”
  3. Click on the “Sign up” button that appears.

You can also register through other accounts on third-party resources (for example, through social networks). The list of resources is available to the right of the registration fields. Click on the appropriate button and follow the instructions to enter through other resources.

When you click on the “Sign up” button you will be redirected to a web page with the following data fields to fill in:

  1. First, you should enter the desired forum name and also your current email address you have access to. Depending on whether you entered your email or name in the previous step, one of the fields will be automatically filled in.
  2. Then you should create and a password to access the forum, which you will subsequently use when logging in along with the login.
  3. Next, specify your birth date by selecting the month and entering the day and year.
  4. Confirm that you are not a robot by clicking on the square field on the captcha.
  5. Mark the checkbox checked by clicking on it to confirm that you agree with forum terms and rules that are accessible through the highlighted link next to the checkbox.
  6. Finally, click on the “Sign up” button.

That’s all. You’ve signed up and logged into the game forum.

Steam Account Association

Once you’ve logged into your account with your login, you need to link your forum account with your Steam account, if you haven’t done this before.

To associate your accounts, you should:

  1. Point your mouse over the account icon in the upper right part of the forum page.
  2. Select “Game Account” item in the opened window and click on it.

If you haven’t linked your forum account to your Steam account before, you will see a window with the “Associate with Steam” button. Click on it.

After that, you will be automatically redirected to the Steam website, where you will need to click on the “Sign In” button for integration.

After that, you will be redirected back to the forum, where you will need to enter your forum account password (not the Steam account password), and then click on the “Associate Account” button.

Then you should click on the “Update a forum account” button that appears.

And then again click on another “Update a forum account” button.

After that, you will see the “Get Key” button below. Click on it.

If everything was done correctly, you’ll see the number of your unique PTS access key, which you need to activate in your Steam library.

Activation Your Key on Steam

You should activate the key you received on the forum just the same way as you activate any other game:

1.You should launch Steam, enter your account, open the “Games” menu and select “Activate a Product on Steam…” If you don’t have a Steam client installed on your computer, you need to download it from the official site and install it.

2.When a window pops up, you should read and accept the Steam Subscriber Agreement, enter the key in the appropriate “Product Code” field, click “Next”, and then complete the key activation.

When you activate the key, the game will appear in your Steam library. You should download and install it on the computer by following the instructions.

PTS Features

As we’ve already mentioned, this PTS game version represents the basis of the future project. But testing this very core is the most important task at this stage of the game development.

It is worth remembering that this testing takes place on our production servers, and we use them to directly and regularly upload even the smallest updates. Thus, we cannot guarantee the stability of servers. You should be prepared for their frequent restarts for updates and fixing the content according to your bug reports. In addition to it, we should point out the character wipe. PTS characters will never reach the release game version and can be reset at any time by technical need.

We remind you that PTS will include:

  • New network architecture of the game, which should eradicate most of the old bugs, freezes, and lags that appeared on v0.6.17.2.
  • New server system with transitions.
  • Stable and seamless transitions in the open world.
  • Improved database.
  • Updated male and female characters with a new controller and animations.
  • Character customization.
  • Updated opponents with a more advanced AI system, unique animations, behavior and combat features, and damage spots. Diggers will be the primary opponents during testing.
  • Updated user interface.
  • New open world with a completely redesigned area up to 60 square miles (100 square kilometers).
  • Nine unique instances.
  • Dynamic day and night cycle.
  • New non-player characters system with the daily routine.
  • Dialogue system.
  • Basic character progression system (experience gain and skill points)
  • Separate test showroom location with main mobs, all types of weapons and armor, as well as fast travel spots connected with all game locations.

Area of Focus

At the very beginning of the game, you should test the character creation and new customization system. Twist, drag, change hair and try to break the character in every possible way.

When the customization is over, you will enter the initial level to make sure that the player interaction with objects in the world works OK. In particular, here you will find the “Eyes” and first opponents.

To pass this level, take the Plasma Cutter (1.) and equip it by opening the inventory via pressing “I” key, choosing the weapon section and dragging the cutter onto the empty pistol slot (2.). Once it is equipped, close the inventory and press “Q” to holster the weapon. Shoot at opponents by pressing LMB. To exit this location, walk through to its end and go down to the air vents (3.).

Once you leave this zone, you will find the Ark with a new system of non-player character system, exit to the open world, and a transition to the showroom.

In the open world, the most important thing to test is the stability the network part and the transitions stability. When moving from server to server, you may notice a short-term picture blinking. It is OK and will indicate that you’ve just made a transition, and the blinking point is a server boundary that you can cross back and forth searching for bugs. This blinking will be corrected in the release version.

In the showroom, in addition to being able to look at the content, you can equip any weapon and armor, and test it on enemies located in the next room. Also, you can quickly travel from the showroom to any instance and search for visual bugs on that location.

How to Report a Bug

Unfortunately, the game doesn’t have a built-in bug report at the moment. In this regard, we ask you to report all bugs you find in the game by leaving a comment on the game forum in the corresponding section “Game Bugs” or send a request to the Support (especially if the found bug is critical and prevents testing).

Access to the support service is provided through the game forum. To fill in the form, click on the “Support Tickets” button and click “Submit New Ticket” in the opened window.

You will see a form to fill out and submit to the Support by clicking on the “Open Request” button. It is advisable to select the correct department to which the occurred problem belongs, to write a short and understandable title, and also describe the problem in details, the reason for its occurrence, and also attach a screenshot or video (if necessary).

Remember that this testing is aimed not only at finding technical and visual errors, but also at forming your opinion on the updated project. What seemed interesting and what seemed boring? What is beautiful and where is there still room for improvement? What is missing in the first place, and what should be added later? Please, leave all feedback and express all your ideas and thought on the forum pages. We have no doubt that it’ll help our project to become better!

Thank you all! We are waiting for you on our public test servers!