Eco Tales : Weekly Recap 21

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Jun 222016


Paint me like one of your French girls, is not something I’ve ever said, however, Krister did it without my asking and now I exist outside of screen space.

Speaking of France, the lazy bum Jona spent his entire week there! Luckily, due to the SAS strike he had all of Monday to work on proceduralism and enemy lore.


J Monday was my only full working day, from Tuesday I was on vay-cay, but I did find some time to study Houdini and got a lot of reference images for plants in Monaco!

Old image, new soon

Seen in the image above is a set of two procedural entities made in Houdini, let’s break them down! Here starts technical mumbo-jumbo, for art, check Kristers post!?


Above you can see a basic Terrain, which inside of Unity is nothing more than a plane which can be edited in real-time using the sliders seen on the right.

While this is currently only around to test the wall system, it does bring some pretty cool and unique features, as you can clearly tell, the entire terrain is not built up by sets of quads, why and how is this?


The answer then, less triangles is better for performance, and by configuring Houdini’s inbuilt optimization algorithm to force the outline of the terrain to stay true to the original and to remove less mesh density where changes in elevation on the terrain are greater, we get a very optimised terrain!


Now ponder this, in the above image I’ve created a small terrain and drawn out a Houdini curve to create a set of walls which are (almost) exactly as wide and deep as the terrain. Imagine if instead we take the bounding box of the wall and auto-generate a terrain of the correct size and with an optimization level based upon its area as well as the difference between its highest and lowest point!


Math, as you can tell isn’t really my main area of expertise but above are my thoughts on how to procedurally generate a room based terrain, let’s take a walk through the notes together!

The first line is Terrain Size = the length of wall bounding box axis x * the length of wall bounding box axis y, in this case Y is depth, I’m an avid 3ds Max user!

The second and third line are Terrain Density x/y = wall bounding box x/y * global division frequency * terrain type frequency, these lines decide how densely packed the quads we start out with are.

Finally, the fourth line decides how much we optimize the terrain clamped between 0 and 100 [percent] (where 100 is keep all quads and 0 is remove all definition except for border edges), starting from 50 we take the absolute value of the terrain bounding box z length multiplied arbitrarily by 10, we then add or subtract based on terrain type optimization.

I’ll come back in a week or so to tell you about my results!


On to the wall, based upon the curve outlined in the image above, a wall is generated, in each corner we place a corner piece and then, based upon a specified distance, we place additional columns, in the future, a lot of different objects will be randomly spawned here.

Currently the wall along with the corner points are put onto the wall and moved to the terrain, based upon the wall segment amount, we can make the wall more or less able to follow the curve of the terrain.

You can also see the hideous colors, these are simply areas of different vertex colors, next week we’ll take a look at how these look with a custom vertex blend shader.

K Hi there, hope you are as happy as me as I sit here first week of vacation.

Last week I had some real fun working on or should I rather say next to Eco Tales as my work was not exactly on the game itself. We have finally been able to do our first 3d print of Lech, now it is a quick test print and a quick paint job on it and as you can se it has its faults.

The print is roughly 5.5 cm (2.16 inches) tall so it’s quite small and that might have brought it shares of the issues with he print.

I snapped the tiny hands right off while removing the support beams as they were really fragile, it also broke free between the layers at the hips and at the middle of the feet so we need to study how to make stronger layers to keep this from happening. Spending more time on it I might sand the rough parts down a bit but maybe we can get a cleaner print as well learning more as we go.

Anyways, after gluing it all back together I applied a quick undercoat of primer and after that dried a few layers of flesh base coat from Vallejo and then adding the few details like eyes, brows and lips.

As you all know Lech is a hard working man, don’t mind getting his hands dirty and as you can see that is exactly what he did, after hours of cleaning the shop naked (as you can see, because let’s be honest, who in their right mind does anything fully clothed), he was ready for a nice hot bath.

First test print of Lech

First test print of Lech










That is it for me, time to put on some pants and head out into the morning sun for a nice run and come back to some coding with a fresh mind, see you in a week.

Jun 142016


Oh my, I can hardly believe the post old Krister has written below, poor J has been rather hard at work and that picture doesn’t look a lot like his art style at all.

Anyhow, I feel I owe it to my future income from you all renting my property to show some of the things Jona has worked on, now that the lazy… Now that he is on vacation in France for a week.

L So what has Jona done then, let’s see, he sent me some images.


Cultist clothing and hierarchy differences

Here are two of those nasty cultists seen inside of Unity, they evidently lack details like belts and such, still though, nastier people would be difficult to find.


Procedural wall prototype

This here is supposed to become walls inside of dungeons, looks terrible doesn’t it? I’ve been told that the “vertex colors” will have different “textures” on them which will make it look great, Jona promises this. We’ll see, I’m sceptical.

He’s also been writing some lore, however, he didn’t want to share any of that, he felt that this is enough, now, enjoy Krister’s original post, it’s rated R for strong language, you’ve been warned!

Well the J of KJ Interactive have traveled to France on a luxurious vacation leaving me here working on Eco Tales all by my self. I don’t hold a grouch for Jola of course, if Joba needs a vacation then Joma should get a vacation.

Finally I can get my ideas into Eco Tales, they are of course the good ones but that does not matter for now. I will try and recap last weeks shenanigans meaning I will besides from writing my part also emulate Joras part.

Oh, and I suppose I will have to continue with having Jopas part first event though it is really weird because then it spells out JK instead of KJ and JK Interactive is a really bad name and I don’t like it.

J Hi, Jopa here, due to a massive case of syphilis I’m on my way to France to find a cure, but I did manage to get some “important” “work” in on Eco, yes you guessed it… Clothes.

I did some pants and a shirt or something like that, here is a ingame screenshot of the final result.

Joora did some new clothes

Joora did some new clothes


K What have been one of the heaviest weeks of the year is finally over, only one week of work left (quite heavy in it self) before my vacation start and I can put in a lot more work on Eco Tales.

Well I suppose I will try and explain what I’ve done this week even though it is invisible because I’m a programmer and can’t make awesome art like that one above from Jona.

Working with the AI as usual I needed to rework the test combat system a bit to make it work, replacing some animations as well. During this process a found some bugs a quickly squashed and started working on a little surprise that I will hopefully be able to tell you about the next week or the week after that.

Anyways, a quick recap or more of a hey how are you doing lets talk tomorrow kind of a post but a post none the less.


As they say in France, are river and have a nice week.

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Jun 092016


You may call me Lochlan Siyah, Orator-Magus of the order of the Black Lake, Lech, as you can clearly tell, is not here any more.

Oh, but do not fear, while his time may have come to an abrupt end, yours, does not have to. I am here for you now. Here, to talk to you about progress.

“Progress”, it’s such a beautiful word! Why sweat and bleed alone? Before undreamed of inventions will offer us comfort, keep us safe from our enemies, us, together, in community.

So let the forests burn, the icecaps melt, and the animals succumb to extinction, the Black Water will bring salvation! Join us!

Join us, or be left behind alone, the choice is yours.

J This week I’ve been focusing on creating the base design for the Cultists of Eco. These horrible Black Water worshipers have long polluted the beautiful forests around Ecbatana, corrupting all its denizens, making them shy away from, or even grow hostile towards humanity.

Using the new cloth shader and some simple maps, it will be very easy to create multiple clans and sub-clans of the cultist, below you can see the first iteration of the Fire Water clan mask inside of Unity.


Finally I created a base clothing set for semi-high tire clan members, there’s still some work to be done but wowee has creating this waken a long time! I recently removed the knot around its stomach area, it’s something I’ll be adding later inside of Maya, I really didn’t feel I could make it tight enough to look good… Who knows, might give it one more go.



K It’s been a great week work wise and life wise this past week, I have gotten a lot more time with Eco Tales, I think I’ve clocked well over 50 hours, of course being a coder that doesn’t mean I have anything to show unless you enjoy looking at code but I did get ready to try out the first AI behavior tree and I’m just getting into that system.

So we have our previously made tasks letting the AI patrol between several points, and I’ve added the ability for it to attack and my first test is giving it sight so if you interrupt the AI on its patrol it will move towards you and attack you.

Artificial intelligence patrolling.

Artificial intelligence patrolling.

So far it works ok I have some kinks to work out but given some time I think I will better understand what I’m doing, right know it is a bit testing, trial and error and it a at least a few things I need to learn and understand to get a hang of it but I don’t think it should be all to difficult or overwhelming.

AI behaviour tree

AI behaviour tree

So this coming week I hope to learn the tools a bit better and will hopefully get a few of the kinks out.

In other news me and my partner just took up AirBnB Hosting so if you’re looking for a place to stay in Stockholm for a few days you might find our sofa bed to be a nice option.

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Jun 012016


I’m livid! Barely any work has been done this week, the boys should be flogged for their negligence.

Let’s see what they have to say for themselves.

J So… Warhammer : Total War was released this Tuesday, I’ve been looking forward to this “match made in heaven” for 16 years.

As you will be able to tell, I’ve been allowed to use Marvelous Designer at my day job, during evenings.

Let’s see what I managed to fit in on Monday, and throw in some Marvelous work from last week as well.

Below are two simple designs, an everyday dress shirt and a long sleeved sweater. I stared with creating these for the fit male, then, by just importing the fit female and fat male as avatars, (as well as changing the pattern to be more feminin/have a lot more cloth), I had variants for all currently finished body types.


Fit male simple sweater

Getting into Marvelous Designer is truly easy if you’re used to working in 3D, this shirt is just based upon a simple shirt pattern I found on google.

The shirt is very tight as I wanted the fit male to be able to show off his highly sought-after abs, the hardest thing really, was rolling up the sleeve, which I did with pins and a lot of cloth pulling and by changing the friction of that arm’s fabric type.

Fit female simple sweater

Fit female simple sweater

For the female I wanted something a bit less revealing, yet low budget, after copying the male pattern I changed the fit and looked at female shirt patterns, then finalized the design by adding some linning around the edges.

Fit male simple dress shirt

Fit male simple dress shirt

After the simple sweater I wanted something more classy yet common enough to be used multiple times without feeling too repeated.

Enter the dress shirt, a piece of clothing men have been wearing since medieval times, again, just googled shirt pattern and adapted it to Eco’s strange(?) character proportions.

For the fit male I added some puffy sleeves, mostly to see if I could, I also went for using pins to get the shirt to drape closer to the character’s belly without removing cloth.


Fat Male simple dress shirt

For the fat male I removed the drapes and simply let it simulate, I then changed the collar to look less tidy as this will be worn by Lech, he’s not the tidy type.

Fit female simple dress shirt

Fit female simple dress shirt

I got rid of the fluffy sleeves for the female and tightened the area around her waist while extending the cloth around her hips.

All of these shirts, from the first seam to final low poly bake took roughly one week or 40 hours, it seems to me that Marvelous Designer will be something I’ll want to get for myself to create real content for Eco with.

I doubt these are the types of designs that will end up in the final game, having watched Downton Abbey I feel the mid 20s’ very appealing and these rather dull… However, the poor people will be coming to your shop as well!

K Well at least I was up to something good even though not as good as Eco Tales. I have been flogging myself all week. Well almost anyway, I’ve been knee deep in correcting the students assignments penultimate week before they leave for the summer, then and only then will my burden decrease before the end of June when my “vacation” starts meaning I can clock some serious time. Work, hitting the gym and hrm, going to Japan for two weeks… I haven’t told Lech that yet, he will be furious but I don’t, eh, care, it will just be too awesome.

Well lets try and focus a bit for what is important. My week on Eco has been like you’ve might have figured short winded, I’ve been playing around with behavior trees now that I have a few basic tasks done, I’m slowly learning the system and my hopes for this week is a test tree where the player can interrupt an AI and get it to follow her.

Sayonara Mr. Robata.

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