Littlecube Valley will be a voxel-based role-playing game with focus on exploration, adventure, survival and community simulation. The vision of the game is inspired by the likes of Cube World, Zelda, Stardew Valley and Harvest Moon.
For this first post, I will show the character movement on a procedurally generated field of tiny green cubes, representing the topmost layer of short grass.
After slightly more than five years of work on a custom voxel engine that runs on iOS, most of the required infrastructure for the game is now completed. I will be increasing the amount of content and gameplay until the first episode becomes complete. Hence, the game will be built in episodic phases, similar to early access.
The following infrastructural features have been implemented successfully:
- Procedural terrain generation system
- Physics rigid bodies and collision systems
- Physics-based character controller
- User interface and player input
- Character animation system
- Memory management system
- Scene management system
- Geometry management and data loading systems
- Voxel data management system
- Ambient light probes
- Multicore CPU processing
- Custom rendering and shading systems
One important issue to clarify is that the game world will not be fully open world and seamless, despite the fact that the engine currently utilises techniques that already could support such features. I will be adopting a slightly different approach based on the following reasons.
1) It is better to avoid the need to resolve numerical inaccuracies where large numerical values are often required for large open world systems.
2) The game world will be fragmented into zones and the player needs to travel between them, usually with a loading screen. Each zone will be sufficiently large (as shown in the video). The border of each zone is also darkened to represent impassable regions.
3) It is often better to concentrate and fill each zone with gameplay content than to have wide empty regions that might end up misrepresenting the game as a "running simulator", that plagued other survival-based games.
Next, is the immediate task of filling up the first zone with gameplay content. I am currently working on the setting up the player's house with an elderly companion, and the environment objects for the zone. I will update the blog with another video and some screenshots when that load of content is implemented.
Thanks for reading!