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Hello fans of Factions. We finally have some exciting news about Factions after months of nearly no activity. We have spent this time reviewing our options, doing a bit of soul searching, trying different approaches etc.. etc.. The previous graphics engine we were using was beginning to show signs of weakness and inferiority. We could not pass between the segments of terrain without lag, there was no multi-threading support, we could not get proper shadows, working with the in-game UI was a huge pain in the arse, and framerates were beginning to suffer as we added more and more to the game client.
We looked around for a suitable replacement, we looked at Irrlicht, Lightfeather, Ogre. What we have finally agreed upon was Unity3d. That is correct, we have adopted the giant of the indie developer world and we could not be happier with our results thus far.
I spent weeks trying to figure out how to keep our current lightweight Server architecture in place while using Unity only for our client. I finally was able to make the link after a full RakNet version upgrade, RakNet c# swig implementation with Unity, and lots and lots of time and frustration. Triadian spent the same time quickly implementing an inventory system, terrain splatting, and a UI system. All these things were much more rapidly developed in Unity.
Even more recently we have developed a system to dynamically change the ground textures on the terrain (something that could not be done with our old engine DarkGDK).
So I just wanted to stop in and say that we are alive and well, progress is again happening at a rapid pace, and we still have every intention to deliver Factions to you. For now, we will try to write these Dev journals at every small milestone we hit. We hope to provide more consistent news to you, and receive more consistent feedback and encouragement from you all.