Dev Blog #1 – The Beginning

Welcome to the first Developer Blog post for MechWarrior: Project 3051!  In today’s post, I wanted to flesh out the future of this game, and what to expect in the coming weeks.  Amidst getting the website running, bringing people on board and getting everyone up to speed, its been a hell of a month so far.  With only two more weeks left in the month, there is a lot left to do if we’re to stay on schedule, but none the less, I can find some time for a Dev Blog post!

Over the past few updates, I’ve shown the current mech assets currently available in the game.  These are known as “The Big Four” because they are the first four guinea pigs for the game project as it evolves.  I’ve chosen these four mechs for their loadouts, speeds, armor, and variant types.

The Big Four

With the completion of the four mechs, 3d asset work has been halted as of now, and I am mostly occupying myself with providing the proper rigs and animations for these mechs.  Additionally, the “Mech Controller” system has nearly been finalized.  3 additional states have been added to the mech, and they are “Power-Up”, “Power-Down”, and finally “Crouch.”  The “Mech Controller” system is also capable of rotating weapons towards their target, the torso is fully articulated, and it looks like overall the “Mech Controller” has all the bells and whistles it needs for now.

In other news, while the final touches are being put into the “Mech Controller”, I’ve finally managed to implement pathfinding!  While it’s not terribly efficient at the moment, and requires quite a bit of optimization, I can say that I am pretty pleased with the final results, as I’ve never done anything quite as complex in regards to performance.  The pathfinding solution uses A* algorithm to find the shortest path between point A and point B and for the purposes of MW:PR3051 works wonderfully.  Since the pathfinding was figured out much quicker than I thought it would take, this leaves me with nearly a week and a half to implement some basic AI.  Which means when video time rolls around, I’ll have more content to show you!  After a basic AI has been implemented, I want to take the time to implement weapons & heat into the game.  Finally, I would like to wrap the month up with some textures for our mechs and some basic RTS controls/UI.

As March rolls on, its time to start planning and getting an idea for where the game will go next month.  Once the Big Four are completely ready, in terms of animations, textures, scripting, etc,  I would like to begin adding some additional content.  Perhaps introduce the first tanks into the game, and some buildings.  MW:PR3051 will feature an entirely destructible environment, and while it is not an impossible task, it is not an easy one and will require some time engineering a proper solution.  After some new content has rolled in and has been coded, I will begin working out the environment/mapping portion of the game.  MW:PR3051 will feature a galactic conquest map featuring the Inner Sphere.  This map will be divided into territories and the idea is that the player will have to take turns trying to take over the Inner Sphere.  Whether the maps will be procedurally generated, or hand-made however, remains undecided.

So far, if things keep going as planned, I plan to have a playable minimum viable product sometime around late winter / early spring next year of 2018.  While the competition in the MW/Battletech game development community is growing and causing some concerns, I remain confident that MW:PR3051 will stir the pot and give birth to a whole new chapter in the MechWarrior franchise.

I hope you all enjoyed reading, and I’ll see you on the Battlefield!

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