Hello everyone and welcome to our first devlog of 2021!
We're kicking off the year with the addition of something that I have wanted for a very long while, even back when the project was 2D.
Rainswept alleyways and streets are a staple of Film Noir, and Dead Heat has been hurting with its absence up until now. We began by adding in the rain effects to the new Hells Kitchen area due to the varied light and structures in the level. The way the rain system was structured meant that all materials used in the scene would need to have their masters or parents modified to activate the rain effects if we need them. The first segment that received the rain treatment was the area outside the luscious pet cemetery sign.
The results were beautiful. The sign needed to glow to get the best result and for that, we used rect lights. Bathing the entire street corner in a warm purple haze. The downside to this was that rect lights (and other light types) do not show up properly in direct light. The light that they admit shows up as a solid object, so it would look like the word 'Cemetary' is covered by a large purple rectangle.
This can be resolved, but the solution would cost some of the glow the water holds from the light. Moving the camera slightly so the rectangles are not in the puddle reflections is the best middle ground.
After the Pet Cemetary test proved to be so successful, I added the new rain variants to the rest of the Kitchen, the results speak for themselves.
The camera at Finnegan's bar must be my personal favourite, the warmth of the signs coupled with the cold dark and puddles surrounding it invokes autumn weather, not to mention screams noir. The effect also brings out the texture in the road material. Making the scene look way more detailed.
We were so happy with the way the area turned out we added the same changes to the alleyway materials. The same benefits could be seen there as well.
Originally, the plan was to have these versions of the levels be randomized with the dry variants to give a pseudo weather system to the game. Now, I feel these versions of the levels outstrip the old ones for detail, atmosphere and mood. All due to the simple addition of a little water.
It's quite amazing how big of a difference something as little as that can make.
We've also been making progress with the Lip Sync system, inching ever closer to completing the system and showing off the voice actors in-game dialogue to you all. We've also started work on updating the interaction system with new features and improving the game flow of item pickup and examining. We'll have more to show you all on those next week.
Thank you all for reading our devlog. It's good to be back!
I'll be continuing live stream's on Fridays and Saturdays next week, same time as before.
As always, updates are posted regularly on our Twitter and our Discord of the Dead: https://discord.gg/r8rQv6h
Please consider supporting us on Patreon, every little helps keep us going and will not be forgotten: https://www.patreon.com/DeadHeat
Thank you all for reading our devlog, we hope to see you again next week!
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