As promised earlier this week, Daybreak is kicking off its latest Landmarks of Landmarkcompetition tomorrow, inviting players to submit custom claims as, well, landmarks that may be permanently installed in the game. Writes Emily “Domino” Taylor,
“The Landmarks of Landmark are visually interesting and striking builds located at each island’s central portal hub, to provide a point of visual interest and inspiration. The previous competition winners can currently be seen by portal hubs in Landmark Closed Beta, and now we’re inviting you to help us update them! Winning landmarks may be used during Beta and/or in our live game, and will be credited with the builder’s name.”
Submissions are due in by February 25th, when player voting begins. Daybreak will pick the winners starting in March.
Recently, Above and Beyond Technologies announced that The Repopulation, their long-in-development MMORPG would be switching to Unreal Engine 4 from the now defunct Hero Engine. Not only did we all breathe a sigh of relief when the news was announced, but we actually began to get excited for The Repopulation once more. The UE4 engine is a marked improvement over Hero, and we can’t wait to see how the game performs on its new tech. We reached out to Founder Joshua Halls to chat about the move and the upcoming “side project” known as Fragmented.
The obvious, aside from the Hero Engine woes, why the swap to UE4? Over say Unity?
We gave both options a long, hard look. Source code, moddability, and networking were key issues for us, and we just felt that Unreal Engine 4 was a better fit for the game. We’re very happy with that decision.
How long do you estimate it will take Above and Beyond to rewrite the code for Repopulation and get the game back online?
We took an, “and the whole kitchen sink” approach before and it resulted in a rather long development cycle. We plan on having a bit more of a modular approach to The Repopulation focusing on the more successful aspects of the game as we seen in the testing and get those out of the door first. Using Fragmented as the base for the game will help as well as as many of the core aspects of the game (animation, cameras, networking, combat, etc) will be complete and ready to integrated. It is hard to set an exact date when we might have a feature to feature rewrite, but we expect to have an initial playable version before the end of the year and then we will continue to iterate on it and introduce different modules into it to get it closer feature to feature with where we were at.
Are you going to be hosting alpha/beta tests all over again?
Yes, existing owners will be able to get back in once initial testing is complete and the basic modules we designed and ready to go.
Will we see any design changes for Repopulation during the conversion? Any systems you want to trim or add?
We will examine everything during the conversion mostly to look at what was working successfully and to evaluate technology shifts from going from Hero Engine to Unreal Engine. One of those technology shifts is how we will design the server system and the modding capabilities of Unreal Engine. This will allow players to host their own servers and the capability of building their own mods beyond the rulesets and controls we design. This can be for a group of 4-20 friends or guild members to 100s or 1000s of players.
Our goals before was to offer a few rulesets to appeal to different types of players and we plan to continue that trend. The game at its core was wrapped around building a community and a solid in game economy and we plan to continue that.
What is Fragmented and how does it fit into the Repopulation?
Fragmented is a Multiplayer Sci-Fi Survival game, based in the same setting as The Repopulation, but it’s time frame begins when the first clones land on Rhyldan. It is before the advent of the core factions: OWON and FPR. Players play the role of the first settlers on the planet, trying to gain a foothold on the new planet. Repop owners will recognize many of the species and locations in the game, but this is before human settlement. It’s an open ended sandbox which will feature both PvP and Co-Op servers.
Gameplay wise if you took the Repopulation, and morphed it into a more action driven survival game, you’d have Fragmented. Complexity is downscaled and a bit easier to grasp, but it’s still a crafting, combat, and harvesting heavy adventure with the ability to create structures and form cities.
Fragmented also allows us to put a product (for free) into the hands of all existing Repop owners, to provide them with something to play, and a glimpse of what to expect from the UE4 version of Repop. Fragmented is forming the base of what will become The Repopulation, much of the code and artwork will be shared between the two games, so in essence those first Fragmented tests will also be the first tests of UE4 Repopulation.
A big draw for Repopulation was its intricate crafting. Will we see something similar in Fragmented?
Crafting is an important part of Fragmented as you will need to collect resources from the world and build all sorts of weapons, armor, buildings, ammo, food, traps, pets, etc, much like The Repopulation. However, most of the creating is fairly straightforward. There is dependency on other trade skill lines, and far less sub-combines. Most crafting recipes are single click adventures.
Some of things you can build include many types of armor and weaponry, structures, props, genetically engineered pets, food and drink, pharmaceuticals, crafting and harvesting tools/stations, traps, turrets, components, vehicles, and containers. Harvesting and crafting are a very big part of the game.
When could people that weren’t involved with Repopulation expect to be able to play Fragmented?
We will start doing larger testing sessions this month and the progress of these testing sessions will play a very important part in setting that timeframe. Hopefully we will be prepared to evaluate further dates toward the end of the month.
When Repopulation comes back, will Fragmented halt development, or do you plan to use it similar to how Landmark is a “test bed” for EQ Next from Daybreak?
We expect to see some crossover of resources being used for both titles (such as art and to some degree some of the programming work). We will have specific needs for both titles, but we also see a lot of crossover that can be used in both titles. Work will continue on Fragmented when we start to gear up more work toward The Repopulation. While this will be a challenge working on 2 titles at once, the alternative was just to work on The Repopulation. This would of resulted in needing some kind of funding source from either a Kickstarter or some kind of investment opportunity and believed developing Fragmented first was a better all around option. Also, we believed was the best chance to make sure The Repopulation would get released and would provide a widely used and tested base in Fragmented to start development for The Repopulation from.
A long awaited update has been finally released! Among the numerous gameplay improvements and fixes to various systems, the update 0.5.6 introduces the first version of the dynamic events system, a new location and a new launcher version!
The first dynamic events, which has been placed at the outskirts of Dunfen and Mereley, greatly increase the credibility of the Gloria Victis world – foxes sneak to hunt chickens, outcasts steal supplies and rebels oppress the townsmen. Next events, which will be implemented in the nearest future, will smoothly introduce the new players into the Gloria Victis world helping them to learn the gameplay mechanics and allow the players to affect the situation of the game world.
A new location – fishing docks which can be found West to Mereley – is a first step of the start locations massive rework. The first impression is very important, therefore both Mereley and Dunfen, alongside with their suburbs, will be redesigned in the in the nearest future and filled with the dynamic events.
A new launcher version, on which we have been working intensively over the last few weeks, resolves most of the problems with downloading and updating the game. We hope that thanks to it many of you will come back to the game and check the latest changes!
See you on the battlefield!
A new launcher version has been implemented – at the first launch of the current launcher it will be updated. When a message “Updating launcher, please wait” will appear, please wait (in some situations it may take up to few minutes – program may stop responding).
Due to the changes in files structure the entire game will be downloaded at the first launch. In case of any problems with launcher (no response for longer time, low download speed) please restart the launcher.
Avast Antivirus tends to verify the launcher repeatedly, causing some problems – we recommend disabling the Avast protection and the DeepScreen function (by default it’s enabled in the Avast settings) for the time of updating the launcher and downloading the game.
Changelog v.0.5.6 Alpha
– Implemented the first version of the dynamic events system – the test version includes 4 basic events per nation, placed around Dunfen and Mereley, as well as the first events chain of the rebels attacking the suburbs area
– Implemented a new location – the fishing docks East to Mereley
– Refresheded the game graphics – textures, shaders and colour palette
– Added 15 new animation of death for the humanoid characters (player’s one and NPCs)
– Added 5 new iddle animations for the player’s character
– Modified buffs for capturing and controlling the flags – they don’t give bonuses to statistics which affect combat anymore
– Implemented missing recipes for crushed ceramics and porcelain, distributed them in the NPC drops
– Implemented a more restrictive checking of the position of the players’ characters positions and an additional hits detection system
– Fixed an issue allowing to walk on the bottom of the sea by holding block or attack before walking into the water
– Fixed an issue causing a lot of the resources not being spawned in the game world
– Fixed an issue causing that, in some cases, character’s controller desynchronization used to happen after changing weapons using a hotbar
– Fixed an issue allowing to equip numerous lanterns on the same equipment slot, causing a massive performance drop for the other players