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Weekly Update 19/08/2022
Enjoy Monkey Empire devblog and keep in touch with the ape game development

Art by Juni

This week, I was able to complete the rendering of the 2 final buildings’ concept art: The sawmill and the farm. Both of these already had initial sketches done by another artist, Sylvain. I made the styles similar to the previously rendered buildings. For the sawmill, I first looked into tropical hardwood that looks similar to the initial sketch and then proceeded to make it a little more realistic. I also made the tree look like the narra or rain tree by adding some yellow buds in a couple of areas. It was a bit hard to render and flesh out the trees because I don’t usually paint them, but for me at least, I believe it turned out well. We did have a slight hiccup though: The wall segments that I rendered last week had some issues in regards to turning them into 3D and optimizing in the same way as Kermit had described. So in the end, we decided to go back to the sketches and choose a different sketch to render. This is still scheduled to be done next week. All in all, the buildings for the primitive era are almost complete.

Game Design by Paul

- Expanded the design and description of Battle Setup, and its mechanics. Defined a couple of sub-mechanics and edge cases within the pre-battle setup. - Added marching mechanics (marching time calculation). This explains how the marching time is calculated from point A (origin) to point B (target) based on a couple of factors like booster, research levels, etc. - Pathfinding, path generator, and passable / impassable terrains have been added. Since we are using a hexagonal grid map, we have defined how other villages are targeted and how the paths where the player’s troops can move within the world are generated. Generated paths also take impassable terrains into account such as bodies of water (lakes, rivers, sea, etc.) or huge mountains and then find and create the best route around it. - Further balancing done. - Buildings, speed table, and research. Defined a couple more building functions, numbers, and variables, as well as some research values, effects, and the exponential progression per level. - Updated the shop screen logic and wireframes. Added shortcut icons in the lower right part of the main HUD. Next to the shop icon, are the icons for Campaign, Quests, and Clans. The initial wireframes also define how the shop cards will look like for certain item types, such as for MKC denominations.

Backend by Floffy

For the backend, the main subject was the new Barracks integration. No specific difficulties, it just takes time to avoid blocking the crurent buildings while having the new barrack. We also conducted an interview for a backend engineer we are happy to welcome Igor, full stack developer with 12 years of experience. He is joining the team full time to help us implement the new game design features.

Frontend by Skattony

Hey! This week, I continued working on the UI, adding not just new widgets, but also new functionality. We can now find the player’s village/s using the new HUD, which shows you how many villages you have through a counter. The counter now also has the ability to build on the attack button as well, telling you how many attacks are active at that moment.
The main menu now has new functionality, such as for audio effects and music for both villages and the world. Also, the ‘keep me logged in’ button from the login menu is now working and the word UI has been updated. Attack matches is still under construction and therefore not yet finished.

Frontend by Beumonkey

Setting up the editor in Linux: While it’s better than Windows for developing, it does require plugins to be manually compiled. This will let us release the game on Linux and make it available to as many people as we can. The next and final platform that we will support will be the web browser version. - Mac build: The touch issue is still being solved. We had package issues at first, and had to rebuild the project, so we are now doing a “Full Rebuild” which will solve the issues but will require many hours to be completed. - The UI bug in the shooting range has been fixed. - Started the process to release the game on Apple and Google Play stores. - Versioning: Set up a new and clean Perforce stream. - Ever since we ported the project to Unreal Engine 5, Skatoony was the only one who’d been packaging the game for Android. However, I am now setting up my computer to be able to do the same, so we can release hot fixes much quicker.

3D by Ignacio

This week I worked on the high-poly version of the capuccin monkey. I created one version with fur and another one without. I actually made a few versions of the facial fur so that I could find a nice shape. Today, I will add some more details to the face, hands and feet, so that I’ll be able to start with UV’s and texturing next week. You can find some pictures in the 3d character channel.

3D by Kermit

High-poly armor for the Gorilla StoneSmasher is currently in progress.
Low-poly game ready armor for the chimp StoneHunter has been done.
The chimp’s fur is nearly finished. This time, we went with a method called HairCards, which is a method that keeps the style and shape of the groom, but requires far less memory and less computational power to render and display than dense hair curves. For example, this model is 300x times more optimized than the previous one.
High-poly armor of the Orangutan Berserker has been finished.
The High-poly version of the barracks is nearly finished. It just needs some detailing on the metal buildings, as well as some cables, and then this model will move on to the low-poly and texturing processes.
(Our 3D artist for the building had some computer issues, so we have had some delays with this part)
The whole Monkey Empire team wishes you a nice day!
See you next week for the new devblog episode and don’t forget to ape!
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Outline
Art by Juni
Game Design by Paul
Backend by Floffy
Frontend by Skattony
Frontend by Beumonkey
3D by Ignacio
3D by Kermit