Monday, 30 September 2019

Coworking and Cracking On - Sprint Roundup 30.09.19

Hello faithful OFF GRID fans!

We had a fairly unique sprint this time around, with loads of doing stuff IRL!  And with that we have got plenty to update you on with this sprint:


This sprint we had a great co-working session with the team in Essex.  It was the first face-to-face gathering with all of the current team in one place, and so we made sure to start it off well!  Sarah welcomed the team with fresh, homemade doughnuts and Rich had several racks of ribs ready for the smoker.

It was an extremely useful co-working session with lots of planning and organisation - with discussion carefully curated by Filipe.  The team also got together with other Essex devs for a bowling session one evening... and we've learned there are no standout bowlers on the team!

Essex Dev Bowling

We have built a studio and processes around working remotely (and even globally!).  It gives us access to talent we wouldn't manage any other way, but it is so good to get together and share a meal around a table.

Rich, Filipe, André, Pontus, & home smoked ribs! Sarah's behind the camera (again)!

We did a lot of scribbling with markers on oversized paper, and presenting ideas for things from new technical solutions to twists and details in the core story of the game. Of course one of the best things about getting together as a team when you predominantly work remotely, is having a reason to take a step back. We covered a lot of our release planning fundamentals as a team, and looked at the big picture such as milestones, work organization, bottlenecks and solutions, and more excitingly, what post-release plans we have in store!

Milliways Mod

This sprint included some fun extras, too.  Chaos Communication Camp 2019 (an international meetings for hackers!) was the end of August, and we celebrated with a Milliways mod.  Josh and a great new modder of ours, Luri, created the mod and Rich streamed with it during CCC.

You can read about it and watch the recordings of the streams all here on our Milliways Mod wiki page.

And if this interests you, you can even pull the repo from gitub and contribute to the mod.

Dundee Calling

Rich and Sarah went to Dundee for the UK Games Fund Awards in early September, where Rich was nominated for the Rising Star Award.  The event was great fun and OFF GRID was demoed at the gorgeous V&A Dundee.  The Videogames exhibition is on at the V&A and it's got a great look in on the dev journeys behind loads of great games, and so much more.

V&A Dundee
Entrance to the Videogames exhibition at the V&A Dundee

Release Date

You may have also spotted that there is some news about the release of OFF GRID.  We'll now be releasing OFF GRID in 2020 - you can read more about that here.  

Cracking on with Dev

In between all of this, we have continued on with dev!  We had a bunch more level content we were working on, some updates to the save system and a bunch of smaller tasks inbetween all of the above, a few of which are visible in the latest builds of the game and modding tools - as listed below.

In the latest game and Levelkit build: 

What can you expect to see in the next build of the game and modding tools?
    Gameplay and Mechanics
    • Optimisations for drone navigation volume generation

    Controls and UX
    • Save system fixes & correctly listing save slots:
      • overwrite saves
      • maximum of 3 save slots
      • reload last save system

    Modding and Lua API additions 
    • Levelkit tool improvements
    • Fixed asset bundle loading for Levelkit levels
    • Levelkit warnings added
    • Miliways mod for Chaos Communication Camp
    • Levelkit updated to Unity 2019.2.5f1

    If you haven’t already - be sure to wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!

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