Work continues on experimental branch as the team keeps hammering away at the next Stable build candidate. It's been a tough wait, we understand, but major issues encountered during development required fixing before the push to Stable branch. This week, Lead Producer Brian Hicks will be dishing out some handy information regarding the Central Loot Economy - what it is, how it's supposed to work, as well as the thought process behind the design choices for the CLE. Also, Lead Designer Peter Nespesny will be telling us about future updates to the vehicles found throughout Chernarus. Peter will go over subjects such as operation, maintenance, as well as the design choices behind these upcoming updates.
Lastly, we have a couple of links[forums.dayzgame.com]
to the DayZ Trello board and DayZ forums discussion thread related to the new bus animations, and at the end of our Status Report, we have a small feature on one of DayZ's content creators - Barely Infected.
Contents This Week
Development Board Spotlight
Dev Update - Hicks
With 0.57 on the horizon, this week I'd like to take time to talk a bit about player progression across Chernarus, the Central Loot Economy (and its impact on this), and the challenges DayZ faces compared to the Arma 2 Mod experience.
First lets go over exactly what the Central Loot Economy is, and what it offers DayZ.
- Migration of control over what items spawn from legacy method (script) into a more easily and rapidly updated system
- This means the dev team can rapidly (and without requiring an update to the game) completely change / update the amount of items that spawn
- This is done on both a global, and a per server level - in the future allowing custom server operators fine control over their server and its item spawn quantities without requiring any base modification to the game
- Control over item lifetimes (speed of decay / time to item cleanup)
- Control over how many of each item time is supposed to be present in the world (Min / Max / Nominal)
- Control over item cost (rarity vs spawning methods)
Why is the Central Loot Economy critical to DayZ's design - versus the original prototype placeholder loot spawning script? Simply put - the original method was a very rough prototype, designed to start populating the initial memory points for each structure. In order for the design and environment teams to be fully free to create a comprehensive, living breathing world - we first needed to begin to have fine and robust control that can be rapidly pushed to all servers. The original prototype method was very time resource heavy for updating, limited our options to traditional DayZ Mod style building definitions only, and in short pidgeon-holed the team into very limited control.
One of the images that has been circulating the DayZ Community over the last week is a map covering player progression across Arma 2's original Chernarus map. The layout of the original Chernarus, as well as the very limited amount of enterable structures, and thus very limited amount of potential spawn points for items meant an inherent flow of player movement across the map. It required very little work on the design side - High end military loot spawned mostly entirely at Barracks structures, Basic Supplies / Weapons at Firestations, Grocery Stores, Barns, and so on, and Medical supplies at Hospitals. The structure of *how* items spawned within the original Chernarus just -fit- the limited scope of that map perfectly.
Moving into DayZ as a standalone project, one of the first tasks undertaken was the decentralization of core resource (points of interest) buildings - and the expansion of Chernarus into a more robust and living world. Nearly every structure was made enter-able, and thus nearly every single building on the map was a potential (or group of potential) points for items to spawn. At first this might not seem like it should have a major impact on the design, and flow of player progression across the map - but when you look at the statistics, it is rather telling.
- In DayZ Mod, with vanilla Chernarus - Potential item spawn points number in the thousands (Sub 10k)
- In DayZ Chernarus + the potential locations for items to spawn exceeds 1 Million.
For a look at the full Status Report, please feel free to have a look at the DayZ Devhub[dayz.com]