Hype levels are too high
Graphical updates in 0.2
Hey guys, Calandiel here. With 0.2 being more and more finished, I thought I'd write a couple small dev logs on itchio to show some of the progress we've made (in particular, progress related to the visual layer, modding and optimization techniques that make SotE possible in the first place). We neglected this hub of our audience for a while so if you've been following us here instead of reddit or discord you may be a bit out of the loop.
Hopefully we'll keep our itchio page up to date from now on though.
Let's start with the big news. This is how the default map mode looks like in 0.2
Colour of both land and water is now determined by a variety of variables. Ice, snow and glaciers are now strictly restricted to areas actually covered in ice or snow. Polar ice caps are no longer unrealistic, perfect circles. Sand textures are limited to areas with sand dunes and, in general, the whole thing follows a much more realistic set of rules, with hue and saturation of colours changing from tile to tile based on their properties. There are also actual rivers flowing through the lands. That's right, the most crucial information provided by the water movement map mode from 0.1 is now available at hand from the default terrain view. Thickness of these rivers depends on amount of water flowing through them and they really add more soul to the landscape.
The work on our special tile view also already started. It won't be finished until 0.3 or maybe even 0.4 but you can see its glimpses in the game already. Once finished, it will allow you to view your cities and lands in a 1:1 ratio, up close. Here is a screenshot showing tiles from 6km above the ground. As you can see, terrain is uneven, with hills and peaks. Tiles have different amount of hills (and hills of different height) depending on their in-game hilliness (a variable that will influence -- among other things -- travel times of agents moving about the globe)
Here are two more screenshots, this time from the ground level:
Of course, all of this is work in progress. The final result in 0.3 or 0.4 will have correct textures, terrain foliage, animals, rivers and buildings all determined by the internal state of tiles.
That's it for now. Next time, I'd like to talk a bit about our approach to the future modding scene and the efforts we've made to make modding as painless and simple as possible. Keep in mind that these features are not available yet and will be released along the 0.2 udate later this year.
Oh, and as a closing note, I'd like to bring your attention to the atmosphere that now surrounds our planets. Thanks to Rayleigh and Mie scattering equations we can produce realistically looking day and night cycles inside the tile view. Just have a look: