Sui Generis - All News
Monday - October 27, 2014
Sui Generis - Prelude Alpha Released
Bare Mettle Entertainment has finally released the Prelude Alpha of Sui Generis on their website, and posted a new kickstarter update with more information.
Prelude Alpha Release
The first prelude alpha is now available from our website. For those of you who haven't caught on yet, the prelude is named Exanima. If you have alpha access then go grab it and then come to our forum and tell us what you think. You're our first testers so this first release is still under NDA until we've dealt with eventual major issues, please keep this in mind!
So, we've somehow overcome the huge ordeal of developing all the functionality and technology needed for a fairly complete playable experience. It may even appear very complete and polished but don't forget this is only the first alpha, there are many features and improvements to come for both Exanima and Sui Generis. This is happening very quickly now that we've gotten the really big and difficult stuff done. Some of the features we have not completed yet will obviously have a massive effect on the game, such as character advancement and thaumaturgy but we have been focusing on things that we believe present the biggest technical challenges and making sure we get them right. Even so we believe this alpha is very enjoyable and that we've already largely succeeded in providing the kind of atmosphere and experience we're aiming for.
This alpha is fairly short and doesn't have a proper conclusion, that's because it's the earliest part of the prelude. Once we've gone through some initial testing and completed the most urgent features and improvements we'll be opening up more of the prelude and then going into beta. The first full release should be close behind. Don't underestimate the volume of content though, you will have to be quite thorough to discover everything and all doors except the big double metal ones can be unlocked.
Monday - October 06, 2014
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #30
Bare Mettle has added Update #30 for Sui Generis to their Kickstarter site. They discuss the difficulty and scope of their ambitions and the progress with the prelude Alpha:
Much of what we're trying to accomplish is far beyond the scope of the prelude and that's partly the idea of the prelude. It's an intermediate goal that is built from the same blocks but doesn't yet need to take advantage of everything they provide. In the end we've invested more in the prelude than we originally planned in an effort to do things right. Core to our game philosophy is that nothing is a static asset or effect, a predefined animation or scripted behaviour. We need to start with such things as placeholders while prototyping but in the end everything must be complex, mutable and reactive. If anything is possible then it should always be possible and be a natural result of the underlying simulation. We're not just talking about physics here but rather how everything has a meaning or purpose, how AI understands what things are and how they may relate to other things. Our event system and AI are aimed at providing an emergent story but we believe the most important and challenging aspect of this is the little things that drive how that story unfolds; the actions and objects that are instrumental to what actually happens and how what happens and happened previously can be perceived by AI. This has always been central to our design.
Tuesday - July 15, 2014
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #29
This update for Sui Generis is about the release of the combat demo with details on the mechanics, which is available to backers.
Before we move on to the purpose of this update we'd like to clear up some misunderstandings that seem to have resulted from our last update. Some people seem to have understood that we were abandoning our physics intensive combat in favour of something more conventional and even that the combat isn't much fun. Nothing could be further from the truth!
The physics based nature of the game has not changed, only improved. We'd become very used to the combat in its previous state but with the feedback we received from the alpha we started to think about things from a new perspective and this led to some big improvements. Nothing was sacrificed.
We received an overwhelmingly positive response from the combat alpha. Almost everyone is really enthusiastic about the combat and many have spent countless hours enjoying it even though it's just a series of one on one fights. This is something not many combat systems can provide. It is however hugely skill based, tactical and difficult, don't expect to be an instant hero who easily dispatches their opponents! Many people were initially frustrated but then came to love it once they understood its subtleties. It requires a little patience and practice, this is not a game where spamming keys leads to victory, every mistake you make will be brutally punished. The AI is clever and will use every tool at their disposal to beat you, you need to be clever too!
Saturday - June 28, 2014
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #28
Missed this update of Sui Generis in which they talk about The Underworld, the dead, damage and equipment mechanics and combat.
Until recently we focused mostly on outdoor environments which in many ways are the most technically challenging. Because we're such a small team with one programmer we generally have to focus on one thing at a time and the underworld had taken a back seat. Developing the prelude we found ourselves confronted with some issues that had been neglected and reviewing things that we weren't satisfied with.
You might remember we promised a vast and sprawling underworld, it's all interconnected rather than being many distinct environments. It's also very deep and it changes as you go deeper. The concept remains the same but our early design now seems too basic and not to the standards that the game is shaping up to.
Our first goal was to introduce more variation in the common structural graphics. We improved the modular system through which the environment is constructed and developed a tool that allows us to create these environments extremely quickly and interactively while providing an intuitive workflow, this means that we can focus on and experiment with design rather than getting bogged down in the work itself. We've improved and adapted our existing assets to this new system and we're developing new ones with fresh insights.
Thursday - May 22, 2014
Sui Generis - Status Update
Bare Mettle released a new status update a few weeks back on the games forum. It talks about the games combat alpha, and a few other performance related issues.
As you've probably noticed we've discontinued development of the combat alpha. This is because we're focusing on other aspects of the game needed for the prelude. The feedback and testing from the combat alpha has been very useful. We've gotten to a point where the game is solid with very few minor bugs remaining that have mostly already been fixed and in terms of combat we're aware what the major issues are and also working to resolve them. There will inevitably be many improvements to be made to combat and animation in general but we think it's more important to broaden the scope for future releases.
Since the last combat alpha release we've been working on getting a number of important things to a complete enough state. First amongst these is finalising and putting together all the AI components necessary to have multiple characters moving and fighting in complex environments. While there's been a huge amount of work put into this already a lot of it was still more experimental than complete and we've been working on new and significant improvements in terms of spatial awareness, dynamic obstacles and combat tactics. An important feature here is also the ability to be able to thoroughly customise all behaviour on a per character basis. Some of this applies to just combat and it's likely we'll release a new combat alpha featuring improvements soon.
Another major area of development has been revising the workflow for underworld (and some other) environments. We've extended our tools to allow for a much more streamlined and rapid workflow while also allowing for more varied environments. We've been rebuilding assests to fit this new system and to higher quality standards, future assets will also be much easier to develop. The workflow is now incredibly fast and intuitive, we can already see how this is allowing us to experiment and focus much more on design rather than getting bogged down in the work itself.
Finally we've been bringing into action some plans to improve character physics performance so as to support more active characters at once. Some early tests show that we may be able to support significantly more characters than we originally thought and this has some pretty significant implications for the game.
There are some other very significant things we've been working on but at this point they would seem like a bit of a spoiler. Hopefully you'll be able to see them yourself before long and we're also planning to release a new development video soon.
We're still unsure what our first non combat alpha release should be. The basic options for an early alpha release would be the early content for the prelude in a somewhat incomplete state or something more along the lines of a free-form test environment. The latter has the advantage of not spoling the prelude experience while also potentially providing a more open testing platform.
Sunday - March 09, 2014
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #27
Bare Mettle Entertainment is back with another post-funding update for Sui Generis with more information on the Combat Alpha Release.
Combat Alpha Release
Yesterday evening we released a first version of the combat alpha. Over 1200 people now have access to it. This very early release is under NDA but it will be lifted soon, we just want to get some early feedback and solve any major issues before it goes public. Anyone with access to the insider forum can view discussions where people have also posted screenshots and videos.
So far the feedback has been very positive. Some people are finding the controls tricky but they seem to be quickly getting used to them, it is a very unique control system. The combat system in general seems to be greatly appreciated. We've had really excellent feedback on graphics, sound, music and various features.
Performance and compatibility are better than we expected, very few people have had compatibility issues and we're getting amazing performance on even very low end systems. This being a first ever alpha release of both game and engine there are of course a few issues but we're quickly solving them as well as making major gameplay adjustments based on the feedback we're receiving. We've already released an updated version with numerous fixes and changes.
This is a huge milestone for us, we've actually shipped a working game even if it is very limited for now and the whole thing has gone very smoothly. The amount of work required to get so many things to this complete state has been staggering and overall we've really made some fantastic progress. Our workflow and tools have greatly improved as a result of this too. Now we can work on adding important features while also receiving continuous feedback (and testing!) and generally having a more meaningful interaction with our backers.
Thursday - February 13, 2014
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #26
A quick update is provided for Sui Generis, which details what they have been working on after the postponement.
After announcing the postponement of the game we felt we had breathing room to develop some important features and improvements that we couldn't be sure we'd have the time to add and are better done sooner than later. Because we weren't sure we'd be able to add some of these features we've never really promised them or been specific about them. We've been wanting to make a development video or two about these new features but we're not finding the time to do this with getting a first build out of the office. We will make some new videos to go into more depth about these things but here's a quick breakdown of some of the more important improvements and features:
- Procedural materials for apparel that allow items to be made from different fabrics and other materials, possess unique variations, be dyed in different colours and have dynamic dirt and wear. This allows for endless unique looking items, greater customisation options and many implications for gameplay and AI.
- Procedural character texturing that allows us to add more unique detail and effects to our characters.
- Finalised and improved models for both genders and all physiques taking advantage of new features.
- Complete overhaul of sounds.
- Reworked post-processing for a more vibrant overall apperance.
- Torches! These work as dynamic lights with new dynamic fire effects, you can grab them off walls and even use them as weapons.
Various animation and combat fixes, including one that caused a perpetual swinging/swaying motion that gave characters a "puppets on string" feel.
A first playable version is scheduled for the end of the month.
Sunday - December 15, 2013
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #25
Bare Mettle Entertainment annouces that Sui Generis release date is being pushed back in the games latest post-funding update.
With less than six months left until our planned release date we can see that we're behind schedule. We thought it best to communicate this now rather than later. We also want to reprioritise current development goals in a way that is more satisfying for you and easier to manage.
Rather than rush to release something incomplete or just keep you waiting we thought to release a prelude which only requires a subset of the game's functionality while we take our time completing features properly and fleshing out the game world. While quite different in scope from the final game this will still be a very enjoyable game in its own right. Besides building a small independent plot (which ties in with the world's lore) no work would go into this that isn't required for the main game and most of the team will be working on other aspects of the game anyway. What it will allow us to do is bring a number of core features to completion first and continue developing others and the world without trying to do everything at once.
We have a somewhat atypical development process in that rather than pile on playable content we develop large complex systems that can deliver content more efficiently and drive it more meaningfully. It's never as simple as add a new character, animation, dialogue or object; everything is part of big unified totality that must support all aspects and instances of those things. We've seen how this can be frustrating for our backers because until these systems are complete there's not much to see. This is fundamental to our design though, we want everything to be playable and interactive in many ways, not just one; we want a reactive and dynamic world that feels real, where there's depth and substance to everything, not just surface. We also believe this is a good strategy for a small team like us working on a project of this scale, our limited resources don't really allow for a more brute force approach.
Saturday - November 30, 2013
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #24
In the latest post-funding update for Sui Generis the developers address the concerns over the released pre-alpha video.
Running improvements and combat controls
Many people found the poor running motion in our latest video quite distracting so we made an immediate effort to improve it. There also seems to be quite a lot of confusion about how the combat works so we made a new, more detailed explanation of the controls as they are in their current state.
There is a lot of room for improvement in the animation system in general and inevitably it draws people's attention. While we do want to continue improving animation we're currently focusing on other aspects of the game.
You may notice that at times the characters seem off balance and recover somewhat unrealistically. While this is relatively easy to improve in a way that would look better in a video it would also take away control from the player by causing involuntary steps and shuffles. We're prioritising gameplay, better to have something that's fun to play and not just nice to watch! That said we can probably improve this but again we don't consider it a priority right now.
Tuesday - November 19, 2013
Sui Generis - Pre-Alpha Gameplay
New Public Video
Somewhat later than promised, here finally is a new public video!
During development it's easy to dismiss many glitches and other issues due to things being unfinished and as you know we are developing all technology in house. As we endeavoured to make this video we became determined to solve every issue we encountered rather than avoiding them or using temporary workarounds. We are after all making a game, not just videos. The game is now very stable, the perfomance is solid and we removed every glitch we could find.
While the game still deserves many tweaks and improvements, and we want to continue improving it almost indefinitely, we feel we've reached a good level of quality and functionality. We've avoided showing some aspects of the game that we don't feel are complete enough yet but we tried to convey the spirit of the game in the video's narrative. Hope you enjoy it!
Despite our efforts the Youtube playback of the video is not very good, you can download a high quality smoother version of the video here:
Direct link: http://sb1.baremettle.com/SuiGenerisPAG.mp4
Torrent (faster): http://cdn1.baremettle.com/SuiGenerisPAG.mp4.torrent
Sunday - October 13, 2013
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #22
Sui Generis has a new post-funding update talking about combat AI and stats.
Item and character stats
Stats must play an important role in the game but player skill, action gameplay and physics are already playing a huge role. We want to retain the skill element and the fluidity of the combat, stats must interact seamlessly with this process and give advancement and loot a good purpose. The effect of stats compared to many other RPGs is quite small, you will never be 10 times as strong or do 100 times more damage, but that extra speed or force does make all the difference.
It's taken us some time to design and test a stat system that would work well. Weapons in particular are tricky because their shape and size alone have a huge impact on gameplay and character animations. Just the distribution of the mass of a weapon (this is accurate and based on the 3D mesh and can also be tweaked) can completely change how a character effectively wields it. We need to use the weapon's inherent physical qualities and allow them to interact with character skills and physique realistically, we also need to provide the player with an intuitive yet accurate overview of a weapon's qualities. We think the fact that every weapon feels and plays differently is great. We're thrilled with what we've come up with and you'll be able to see all this in game.
Combat AI is something we're taking very seriously. We're very keen on NPCs appearing lifelike and playing similarly to a human opponent. Combined with the physical interaction and motion, a realistic and clever behaviour really tricks our brains into thinking of the characters as alive, it makes combat feel very real and personal. We're also keen on AI opponents being challenging while playing by the same exact rules as yourself which contributes to this feeling.
To ensure that NPCs really do play by the same rules as players we're actually running them through the same exact controls, we're basically putting a virtual player in charge of them with their own cursor and buttons to press. Because of the full physics simulation however these need to be very smart, landing a good blow requires steering the character so that their weapon connects with force in the right place at the right time while overcoming the opponent's defences. When you play the game you'll see this is a very organic and tricky process, it requires skill from a player and it also does from AI. It's even trickier when you start to consider the hugely different weapons and other items that a character or their opponents may be equipping. That's just the beginning though, we want our characters to react with human like individual qualities; we need them to employ solid tactics and have good awareness of the environment, swinging a halberd into a wall, or worse into a friend's face, is a big problem. NPCs need to act cleverly in any situation or against any number of opponents. Oh, and we need you to be cursing at the little buggers with genuine outrage.
Tuesday - September 24, 2013
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #21
Sui Generis has a new post-funding update with news of a new environment artist.
A while ago we decided to hire an additional environment artist to help us build the Sui Generis game world. We advertised the position and received over 100 applications, we selected the best applicants and asked them to do an art test, we then interviewed those with the best submissions and finally selected one artist to join our team. His name is Leonid Kuzyakin.Incidentally Leonid was one of our Kickstarter backers with a significant contribution. This already told us he was passionate about the project and we very much liked everything we heard during the interview. Leonid shares our views on game design and his education gives him a solid understanding of architecture and its history, which fits perfectly with our attention to detail and authenticity.
Leonid adapted very quickly to our art style and methods, we are really pleased with the results and to have him join our team. Welcome to the team Leonid!
P.S. We're almost ready to record the new video, coming soon.
Saturday - August 31, 2013
Sui Generis - Post-Funding Update #20
Bare Mettle Entertainment has a new post-funding update with news about the promised video for Sui Generis.
We promised you a public video but then we got cold feet. We're not very comfortable with showing the game while it's still so far from completion. While we see the progress we've made it's inevitable that people will only see what we haven't done yet, the flaws. Don't worry though, we are actively working towards a video again now.
In general we're focusing much more on big stuff and less on features that can be completed quickly. This is more true now than ever before. While prototyping stuff, doing mockups and just the odd bit here and there is fun, it's actually more harmful than beneficial at this stage. We need to work methodically and make sure we do everything in the most efficient and actually useful way possible.
So, expect a video before long, really this time. We're taking some time off the big stuff to polish up a few things and add a couple of cool features even though it's not the best thing for us to be doing right now. Thank you for your patience, you funded this project and you have every right to be kept in the loop, we've been overwhelmed by development work but we do honestly want to make an effort to communicate more with you.
Tuesday - May 28, 2013
Sui Generis - Development Update
I almost forgot about this funded kickstarter my humble apologies about that. The game was called Sui Generis and the project has a development update post.
THE BIG PICTURE
During our Kickstarter campaign we were criticised for showing a lot of technology but not enough of a game or story. This was frustrating for us because actually the dynamic story is one of the aspects of the game we're most excited about. Technology is just a tool to support that vision and make the world more immersive.
We talked about a "dynamic story" but that could mean anything. Because we don't know how much we can accomplish it's been difficult for us to go into much detail, and we couldn't promise things we weren't sure we can deliver. Now we're actively working towards this goal and we need to tell you what we're working on. Still this is a complex topic that is difficult to explain concisely so please bear with us as we try to convey our ideas.
The kind of roleplaying experience we dreamed of and hope to create is one that hasn't been possible without a human game master who can intelligently respond to all your actions. We want your actions to have meaningful effects, not as pre-scripted "choice and consequences" over which we have no real insight or control, but as a world that is affected realistically by everything you do. We want you to be able to make mistakes, to fail and to feel that your successes are your own. We even want you to accomplish things that we as designers have never foreseen. We want a world capable of supporting your most creative strategies, where hypothetical scenarios turn out to be real. We're talking about roleplaying, immersion, being master of your own character in a world that can make you believe it is real.
Can we really do all this? As we've said before, we have to try. It is difficult, we ourselves have to occasionally remind ourselves why it might be possible. We are committed to it and actively working towards it. To us this is the only way worth doing it. It’s the same attitude we have with everything. We're doing combat using physics because that's kind of how it works. It might be far from perfect but it's a lot better and infinitely less boring than comparing a couple of numbers.
Thanks go to Lemonhead for bringing this post to my attention.
Information aboutSui Generis
Regions & platforms
· Platform: PC
· To be announced
· Publisher: Unknown