May 2019 Update

New merc squadmates with voices, soft ray traced shadows, sleek HUD mockup, heavy enemy character models, optimized saving, grenade launchers and more!

May 2019
Dude getting shot

Still having fun with hit reactions 🙂

By the way, that’s the new character model for the friendly mercs. The rigging is still WIP. Voiced by Professional Mr. Phann.

Got them in game and following the player, check out this gameplay video

Hud Mockup

Hud Mockup

Quick mockup of a new Hud. The last one was made pretty quickly. This one aims to be less intrusive and more readable. The silly text is a placeholder, from the new Blade Runner 2049 movie 😛

Soft Shadows

Still doing some research on this, but found a way to get softer shadows and better performance.

The harsh shadows/lighting in the last demo wasn’t exactly a design choice but a quick and easy solution. This will allow us to budget for more lights and create more realistic environments.

May 2019
May 2019
May 2019
May 2019
May 2019
May 2019

Heavy Soldier

May 2019

Heavy bullet spongey character is almost ready, just needs to be rigged. This guy can take a lot of bullets before going down.

Instant Autosaves

If you played the last demo, you probably had to deal with those awful 10+ second long autosaves. Finally replaced that brute force solution with a more elegant one, there’s still a slight hitch but with some optimization it will be seamless.

Instant Autosave

Prototype Grenade Launcher

Grenade Launcher

Been prototyping a grenade launcher (model WIP).

Other news:

Kopter is working on doing a professional rigging pass on the characters and FP arms. We’ve started gathering references and models for guns and planning out the animations. Expect some much higher quality first person animations soon!

That’s it for this time, be sure to follow and join the Discord for more news!

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March Dev Update

New realistic and mean looking enemy character models! Higher tier enemies wear bulletproof helmets (that can be shot off), fixed hit reactions not playing, and a few difficulty tweaks.

Those explosions from last time are still being worked on… In the mean time, let’s look at the new character models.

New Soldiers
New Soldiers
New Soldiers
New Soldiers
New Soldiers

These were created by the very talented character artist from Brazil, Jackes Tabach. Check out his portfolio for some of his other cool models.

Pretty happy to finally say goodbye to those placeholders. They were from Adobe Fuse (albeit heavily modified), which is a great free character model resource but unfortunately everyone has been using their models… Including masterpieces like Hunt Down The Freeman (lol).

Video Update

Anyways, here’s basically a video summing up a few cool new things that are being worked on, or you can scroll down for text and gifs if you prefer.

Improved hit reactions

There was an awful glitch before where hit animations wouldn’t play at all, so enemies would just freeze up suddenly. This made weapons feel really weak and enemies felt really spongey. Now with proper hit reactions it’s much more satisfying to riddle enemies with bullets. More specific hit animations coming soon (for head, arms etc).

March Update
March Update

Helmets

Some enemies can wear helmets. Makes it much harder to headshot them, so you’ll have to be more precise with your shots, aiming at exposed areas. Or spraying at centre of mass works too 😛

March Update
March Update

Dodging bullets

Bullets now slow down once they get close to you, so enemies from far away are still a threat. Their bullets will quickly close in on you but slow down at the last second, giving you just enough room to dodge them (was way too easy before, bullets were just constantly slow, even if an enemy was shooting at you 200 metres away haha)

March Update

That’s all for now, follow and stay tuned for more cool updates and info on another free demo coming out later this year 😀

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Download TREPANG2 2018 Demo – Indie DB

New explosions, character art, voiceovers and more!

New Explosions

Check out those new explosions! Will be adding flaming debris and sparks too eventually.

Content is a bit slow as we’re working to fix tons of bugs and issues that came up in the last demo, which by the way if you haven’t downloaded yet, get it here:

TREPANG2 2018 Demo

This is what bug fixing looks like. Glad to say the random crashes and physics bugs are finally gone!

New voiceovers

Brandon (writer and voice actor) has been hard at working writing, recording and directing new dialogue. We caved in and decided to add radio filters to character voices. Originally we were going for a more realistic direction, but now it’s more sci-fi and the radio filters just work a lot better.

Here’s some new lines from Brandon with new radio filters. Link if player doesn’t work

And we also have a new voice actor for another faction, Mr. Phann. Here’s a link if the player doesn’t work

Adrenaline

Stealth didn’t really work in the last demo and we’re looking to address that. Sure you could sneak around but there wasn’t really a reward other than getting in some sneaky headshots. Here’s a prototype of an “adrenaline” pickup which charges focus (slow motion). This encourages and rewards stealth and exploration.

Concept Art

Concept art
Concept art
Concept art

The current enemy soldiers are placeholder and will be replaced soon. Here’s a sneak peek of how they will look. The character models are still being worked on but some will be ready for in game use soon!

Community Playlist

Thanks to wKdISGooD for bringing this up. We now have a community playlist of some awesome kill montages and let’s plays. If you have any cool gameplay videos or let’s plays, feel free to let us know and your videos can be added to the list!

Addressing other bug fixes and issues

Still investigating and fixing a lot of other issues, including blood shading issues, blinding lens flares, that super slow save system and many others. Gameplay balance issues are also being looked at. Next demo will be much more stable and polished.

Fixed blood bug
Lens flares

Businessy Talk

The last demo got us a lot more attention that expected! On top of all the kind words, advice, input and suggestions we’ve also been talking with influencers and publishers. If you’re one of those people and are interested, please contact me (wilson@trepang2.com), or check out our website or presskit for more info.

Bonus: Nightmare level

Here’s a level that was scrapped a bit before the last demo, it might be revisited later sometime.

Until next time!

Please follow us to stay updated and connected! Next time we’ll have some explosions, character art and other cool stuff.

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Brute force bug fixing

If you played the 2018 demo, you’ll probably have experienced a couple crashes or physics turning off suddenly.

Unfortunately I missed these bugs while crunching to get the demo out before the year’s end. Planning a lot more carefully this year to avoid a similar situation.

Usually when fixing bugs, we first try to “repro” (reproduce – steps required to make the bug happen). Once we’ve reliably found a way to repro the bug, we can find what code is causing it by debugging or looking through error logs. Then after applying a fix, we try to repro it again – if it doesn’t show up, the bug is fixed.

Physics bugging out was somewhat easy to reproduce and fix. It turned out armour pickups were being spawned with invalid transforms which would cause the game’s physics and collisions to behave really strangely (clipping, freezing or sometimes just crashing). The engine never reported any errors though which made repro a bit difficult, but eventually it was fixed. Will also be writing my own spawning function which will check for invalid transforms and report an error if it happens to prevent this issue from coming up again.

Ok, physics bug fixed. Shooting dummies doesn’t cause the game to crash or collisions to stop working.

The more difficult bug was random crashing when shooting stunned NPCs. (The above video just has “dummy” characters, they have no AI and can’t be stunned or knocked over). I couldn’t reproduce it reliably no matter what kind of crazy test maps I set up on various PCs. I could run these test maps on repeat for hours and some days nothing would show up. Other times it’d crash consistently for a few minutes, then disappear again.

I swear it became more elusive the harder I tried to look for it, but right when I started questioning its existence (and my own sanity) it’d come back again. Looking through error logs or debugging with visual studio yielded nothing meaningful – it was always a different random actor getting invalid transforms.

It seemed to have some relationship with CPU performance or heat? I found it happened more often on colder days than hot, and somehow by undervolting my CPU and cleaning out fans, I was able to repro it consistently.

Unfortunately visual studio and the error logs didn’t give anything useful still, so at this point there was a lot of trial and error: comment out some code, run tests, repeat. Blueprint debugging is fun.

Would run these tests for hours and wait for a crash every small change.

Fortunately the game is mostly in C++ and doesn’t use a lot of blueprints or this would’ve been an even worse nightmare. Turns out it was the bullet impact effects spawning with invalid transforms. This usually didn’t outright crashed the game, but like the above mentioned issues caused physics and collisions to get really weird, eventually causing other actors to teleport to invalid transforms which would (sometimes) finally lead to a crash.