Content, content, content

I’ve been preparing for the release of public playable demo of Xenos. There’s still a lot stuff to do before I consider it ready: I guesstimated it last week and came with 4-5 weeks in total. A lot of this time is going to be spent on adding content to the game – I mean, as opposed to writing code, adding new features etc.

Even a relatively small game location requires many objects – static models, effects, items etc. I’m working now with a town sized at 256×256 tiles (that’s the size of a “block” of map that is stored in a single file on disk). It has around 20 different buildings that use some 20 kinds of wall objects and 50 kinds of tile objects – things like furniture, stuff lying around etc. And I think it needs even more, perhaps twice that number. It turns out, a town has tons of different stuff – who would’ve thought, right?

As I’m spending most of my time making models and putting them on the map (the town map is not procedurally generated – I want to have an example made by hand before I tackle generation), today’s post is gonna be mostly pictures.

Here we have some residential houses. This (and most of the following) picture is shot in editor mode, which allows me to put camera higher than in-game, to fit more on a single picture.
content_cafeHere’s a little cafe. Currently it mostly reuses the same models as residential houses: it’s just a really big kitchen and many tables. And chairs.

content_store A general store with a parking lot. With a small house in background.


A warehouse with crates. No game can be considered complete if it doesn’t feature crates (although, these are just cardboard boxes actually. I guess they’ll have to do..)

content_workshopSome sort of workshop. I think workshops and generally industrial  buildings are in the most dire need of more models. I had to resort to sprinkling “generic rubble” around here.


A gas station. Looks sorta empty, but it would be of huge importance when I add refuelling mechanic to the game.

content_invThis picture shows a different kind of content: items. To make a more-or-less believable abandoned town, I have to put lots of items in the houses. Since Xenos is set immediately, or maybe soon after, the apocalypse, I can’t just explain empty containers with “everything has been looted”, like zombie games do: there are no looters yet – in fact, you play one of the first. I made dozens of items, event though lots of them still use the generic “gray box” icon, and don’t do anything useful in-game. Some don’t even have any descriptions: try writing interesting 5-15 word descriptions for 20 items in a row and you’d understand why.

I think town content is mostly ready for the demo; but I need at least some alien objects to add: their metal robotic structures, traps, and maybe a couple of alien “species”.

Also, if you can think of any useful object or item to add, don’t hesitate to suggest it in comments. I don’t promise I’d add it immediately, but it would probably find its way into the game sooner or later.


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