Happy Screenshot Saturday and Independence Day weekend (and Canada Day weekend for our Canadian friends!)
Hey there DMT fans. Today we wanted to give you a preview of some of our special zombies. While the game gets plenty tense as players run and dodge hordes of regular zombies (especially if they spend a little too much time looting…), we thought we should add some variety to the mix. Our first such addition is three special zombies to looting mode that will affect the player’s journey in different ways.
Our three special zombies are the Banshee, the Oozer, and the Plague zombie. For this game in particular, which focuses not only on your ability to run around and shoot zombies but also staying out of dangerous situations and surviving a long road trip, we had to think of zombies that would support our core mechanics.
First we wanted something that allowed us to make interesting level design choices in looting mode and that would force the player to think about their route through cities. Our answer for this is the Banshee, a blind zombie that patrols cities.
Rather than attacking the player directly when it finds them, it screams loudly. This attracts a horde of zombies to the player’s area that they must contend with. The Banshee has the power to transform even the stealthiest and most skilled player’s uneventful looting missions into tense fights for survival.
While the Banshee affects looting mode by adding more zombies to the playing field, the Oozer limits the player’s ability to run from those zombies.This zombie’s mutation causes its arms and jaw to fall off while sticky green goo oozes from the leftover cavities.
As the Oozer wanders through levels, they leave trails that slow the player down considerably. This can be especially threatening if the player is running from an especially big horde of zombies.
The final special zombie is the Plague Zombie.
This large zombie is a ticking time bomb of infected pus that charges at players when it detects them. When it reaches the player it explodes, sending its infectious innards everywhere.
We wanted a zombie that not only affected the player in looting mode, but also had an effect on the player’s state across both game modes. When the Plague Zombie explodes near a player character, that character becomes ill – a condition which transfers to travel mode.
That’s it for now. We’ll be appearing at Video Gamers United (VGU) in Washington DC next weekend at booth 201 with our special zombies in tow. Look for updates on that show and on some upcoming additions to the game!
Just a quick update tonight of a few screenshots taken during animation development. Using our engine’s (Unity) animation system, we can animate one character and apply that movement to others. This allows us to spend more resources creating alternate weapon modes for the players and animations to keep zombies varied. Since looting mode will be 3D isometric, a viewport is kept at that angle to see how it would look in game. Here are some screenshot previews of animations and a few weapons from the game. There is even a blooper shot of what happens when an animation is played with the wrong weapon in hand – can you guess what weapon was SUPPOSED to be used?
While we work hard on DMT game assets, it’s nice to take the time to share some of what we’re working on.
When doing 3D environment art, especially for mobile games, it can be helpful to have as many objects as possible get their texture from a texture atlas – a collage of individual textures combined into one big image (typically 2048 x 2048 pixels.) This lets us create a variety of objects that run efficiently in-game because they are all using the same material and texture file. Below is a screenshot of a workspace with the texture image displayed. Also check out some of our incidental assets for the forest/park environments and a storefront from environment artist Mike K.