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Jeudi 23 octobre 2014  
 
Status Report - Week of 20 Oct 14

The subject of the central economy has been one of varied opinions within the community. The idea of centralized control over both rare items, and quantity control over more common items of loot is very polarizing. As we look towards the remaining months left in 2014, the team has been discussing our intended goals and level of functionality desired from the loot spawning system, and the central hives’ control over it. As the current behavior for the spawning and respawning of loot is a placeholder system and the limits of this form are very visible when observing the current behavior on experimental branch servers we have outlined the following goals for the final functionality with the programming, and design teams:

    Control over quantity per server instance for rare / high value items (Eg: M4A1, SVD, etc)
    Loot table control per region/area type rather than per building class name
    Even distribution of loot economy across the whole of Chernarus

As work moves forward on deploying the intended functionality into loot spawning/respawning, server side stats analysis will allow fine adjustments to the system to be made, and experimental branch updates on a weekly basis will allow us to iterate, and volume/stress test against a large user base. Status reports throughout the remainder of the year will keep people apprised on the progress of this new system. - Brian Hicks / Producer

Chris / Lead Artist

"This week, I’m taking a look at our skybox and lighting settings to see if there is opportunity to improve the experience visually - particularly at dawn/dusk and night.  I’m hoping that we will find a way to add the milky way spiral arm visible in the night sky to our game.

Work continues on several new character pieces (women’s clothing, prison uniform, medical scrubs, craftable clothing and new zombie types) as well as various environment models which I have mentioned previously (new heli crash site, objects for the NEAF, building signs, other props).

The Derringer, AK74M, AKS74U and MP133 with pistol grips have all been passed to the animators, designers and sound team for their part to be completed. We are still be on course to add 5.45mm ammo and the AK74 before the end of October.”

Peter / Lead Designer

"The art team has completed several new weapons and delivered the assets to the animation and design teams. One of these new items is one quite a special case, which we need to figure out how to do properly and it’s a flare gun. So in the meantime you will get other dangerous toys to play with. By the way do you remember that little useful item from the mod which was used to heat yourself up? Character exposure mechanics were expanded again and good old heat pack is back and it’s better than ever. When you use it, it starts to produce heat to warm you up as long as the pack lasts. With advanced weather impact we had introduced also some meaning for shoes you are wearing. But that wasn’t enough for us within scope of the survival. Shoes have potential to became very important part of your clothes to take care of as they are gets damaged now depending on movement speed, surface type and distance traveled and eventually hurts your feet.

Previously, I had mentioned the new controls system which is currently being worked on and we have working prototype of it already. You are probably curious what changes it will brings to game and way it’s played. We are focused to make the controlling of your character as fluent as possible so there will be no immersion breaking due to clunky controls. That means we want to eliminate user action menu, or at least have this possibility just for very special cases. Usage of items will be driven contextually, let’s say you have an apple in your hand and you invoke action by pressing and holding use button - if you are pointing on someone you will start to feed him while you are holding the use button, if not then you will start eating it by yourself - when you release you will stop the action. You will be able to use items even during movement. Still have that half-eaten apple in hand when zombie suddenly appear? Just hit him hard with that apple in your hand - yes all items (of course firearms too) can became melee weapons. New controls allow us also to expand melee system which we are considering to do with addition of two types of attacks - fast and charged, or to add push instead of fast attack. We will see how the prototype of these goes and how it will play with server performance and synchronization in general.

Next time I will talk a little bit about the new inventory too. As usual apart from such exciting stuff we made some fixes such ammo-box container inception and other smaller ones. I nearly forgot that we spent some time on defining what animal companions should be, but that’s something to talk about later.

Choose your footwear wisely… see you in Chernarus folks!”

Standup Notes for the week of 20 Oct 14

(Note: Standup notes are not a change log - they are a quick high level look at tasks the teams worked on throughout this week)

    Art

      Improvements to the skybox and lighting
      Multiple crafted leather items
      Women’s shorts, sweater
      Polishing bush rag and 3D camo for weapons
      Prison Uniform Pants
      Medical Scrubs
      Steyr AUG
      Large Tent
      Various new environment models

    Animation

      Sitting gesture changes/polishing
      Prone animations with pistol polishings
      New hand poses for items
      Wring clothes animation done
      Binoculars animation graph tuning
      Bow reload animations in progress

    Design

      Bugfixing (tent pitching, repairing leather items, struggling, containers)
      Configs and scripts for new items (heat pack)
      Shoes and foots damage
      Expansion of weather impact
      Loot tables maintenance
      Damage and destruct textures
      Advanced melee
      Barricading
      Animal companions
      Loot distribution
      Injured character
      Controls
      Inventory
      Vehicles

    Programming

      Critical inventory fixes
      Unintenional weapon switching
      New gamecontrols
      Loot distribution improvements
      Gameplay statistics
      Door states persistency
      Implementation of the V3S vehicle
      Zombie/Animal AI
 
 


Jeudi 9 octobre 2014  
 
Status Report

With the experimental branch updates on 0.50 rolling out this week, Raist and Eugen have worked together to deploy additional data tracking methods that should aid fine tracking and design adjustment related to player movement. Previously the team had focused most of our data tracking methods on loot distribution, spawning, and so forth - as we move closer towards the deployment of vehicles, expansion of existing persistent objects, and the central loot economy we will continue to use experimental branch and official stable branch servers to guide the design of gameplay mechanics via player movement, death, and camp analysis.

The above image shows the concentration of player deaths within a 12 hour period on one Experimental Branch 0.50 server. As you can see, the expected large amount of player deaths occur along the player spawn points. However, what is increasingly fascinating is the large spread of unique player deaths across the map. From as far out as Kamenka, to Tulga, Skalisty Island, and Devil’s Castle. I like to imagine the lone player death at Green Mountain was an epic last stand gun fight, but we may never know.
In addition to the obvious value to the data above, analyzing data like this will become increasingly valuable for the development of core gameplay systems, as well as Chernarus Plus over the coming days and months.

In addition to the work done on player data tracking, the gameplay programming team has worked hard on increasing server side performance optimization as well as server side security updates related to player position tracking. 0.49 introduced a good deal of server side performance enhancements, and addressed quite a few critical issues with stability. However, with these fixes came several new issues that we hope to see resolved with the stable release at the end of the month. We hope to finish out October with 50 player servers, persistence enabled by standard, and faster server performance across all servers on stable branch. As we progress along our goals in October, the status reports will keep the player base updated on these goals and any potential blockers or delays. - Brian Hicks / Producer

Chris / Lead Artist

    Tech

      Work continues on fixing the graphical bug associated with our 3D camo and it has turned out to be more troublesome than originally thought. While the programmers were tinkering around with the shaders in search of a fix, we were able to have an additional channel added to the shader used for most of the loot items which will allow us to procedurally change the color of objects via config. The designers will evaluate how and when to implement such a feature but I am hopeful it will lead to a lot more color customization options on a lot more items than we currently allow. We also got support for a colorize in the grass shader so that we can vary the color of patches of grass in a large field, adding some visual flare to the environment.

    Character Art

      The first women’s clothing item is done: 3/4 length pants. It will be added in the no-so distant future, along with women’s shorts and a sweater. The prison uniform, which was paused pending a few high priority tasks, is WIP again. We will have to pause the creation of new zombie types temporarily to work on some tweaks to the skeleton, which were asked for by the programming and animation team, related to new zombie AI/animation triggers.  The team in Bratislava is working on various crafted items from leather which I hope will be interesting to people who like to play in more of a PvE style.

    Weapons

      The Derringer art is ready and will soon be ready to be passed along the chain: animations, sound, cfg. The AKS74U and AK74M are being polished along with the art assets related to 5.45mm ammo. I have set this as a goal for myself - that by the end of October the AK74 family will debut on experimental. “

Viktor / Lead Animator

"After introducing one handed pistol animations many visual bugs had to be fixed to provide smooth and polished experience. Part of that is polishing and replacing some unarmed moves while standing. First of upcoming minor changes is a new unarmed sprint and unarmed run should follow. When we finalize those we can polish other animations like running with binoculars, pistols and other one handed items.


We are still processing the last mocap animations as these should be ready for improved zombie ai. Many new attack for zombies are being created so we can prototype and test different zombie combat situations. We already have a first iteration of tools for new animation system and it looks great. If all goes as planned we would like to introduce zombies on the new system as soon as it will be possible. After all, we already have a deer running around using new system (just internally for now) and it’s already visible improvement. But it is still a long way to go until we can use all of the great features of the new animation system.”

Peter / Lead Designer

"Last week was pretty hectic. We brought a bunch of different assets from our backlog to the game like the leather sewing kit so you can finally repair your leather clothes and shoes, RDG2 tube also known as smoke grenade, sardines - this time alive not canned, welding and firefighter helmet to cover your head, brass knuckles and sledgehammer to crunch some bones. All of these things should spawn in game along with long time awaited MP-133 and R92. 

As well, a good amount of bug fixing tasks were addressed. For example better placement of tents which takes surrounding collisions into account to allow for more intelligent pitching of tents in wild places. Proper placement of wrecks created by dynamic events. Allowing or forbidding of fireplaces to be ignited in some places. Temperature and wetness fixes and tweaks. 

Apart from that we also opened discussion which will help us to outline construction design and it’s mechanics. We are analyzing what’s possible and where the borders are so we can decide upon crucial things like how they will be placed - freely or grid based? What the granularity of objects will be - down to logs, whole walls or perhaps complete floors? How the crafting of these objects will be done - just a recipe or actually stacking. There are many important things which will define player experience of creating, using and ambushing bases. 

Interesting times ahead, probably we will need some dungarees in the future… see you in Chernarus folks! “

Standup Notes for the week of 06 Oct 14

(Note: Standup notes are not a change log - they are a quick high level look at tasks the teams worked on throughout this week)

    Art

      Multiple crafted leather items
      Women’s shorts, sweater.
      Procedural color changing for loot.
      Polishing bush rag and 3D camo for weapons
      Plants for horticulture
      Craftable vest and coat
      Various car parts
      Prison Uniform
      Steyr AUG
      Zombie skeleton tweaks
      Large military tent 

    Animation

      Player Unarmed Sprint
      Player animation graph bugfixing
      Zombie mocap processing
      Lowered one handed Pistol Animations Polishing
      Zombie Animations
      Player Pistol Animations

    Design

      Bugfixing
      Configs and scripts for new items (lockpicks, rangefinder)
      Configs and scripts for hermit zombie
      Configs and scripts for MP133, Repeater
      Weather impact on player and carried items
      Vehicles and their parts
      Horticulture
      Barricading
      Animal and zombie AI
      Advanced melee combat string table

    Programming

      Critical inventory fixes
      Unintenional weapon switching
      Issues with animation sychronization
      Server performance issues
      Broken door states in navmesh
      Improved persistance saving
      Server performance issues
      Data/Common Stats tracking
      Loot distribution analysis
 
 


Mercredi 1 octobre 2014  
 
Status Report - Week of 29 Sept 14

Over the last week (and throughout the next few) a good deal of work has been done to gauge current server side performance, player and AI limitations, and the immediate steps required to increase the current limits. In tandem with work done with BattlEye, our game server provider partners, and our internal security team we have also continued work addressing immediate security concerns and ways to mitigate them in order to provide an enjoyable player experience.

Players will begin to see these appear in the following ways:

    Experimental Branch will begin operating at 50 players per server

      With the short term goal of deploying this to stable branch servers as well

    Experimental Branch will deploy and test new forms of detection from BattlEye
    Over the next few months we will use experimental branch to roll out changes to Zombie AI & Sensor functions
    Within weeks you will begin to be able to rent private shards of the central DayZ hive along with your DayZ server instance from your preferred game server provider
    In October and November you will see experimental branch servers rolled out with varying player counts as the team tests optimization measures aimed at server performance and data management

Pairing this work with work currently under way by the design and programming teams to support the upcoming experimental release of both our first vehicle, as well as the first iteration of barricading via locked doors and the methods to break them down will greatly expand the player experiences as we close out 2014. It is important to pay attention to the project status reports, and developer streams as well as participate in discussion on the official forums to maximize your engagement with the development process.

- Brian Hicks / Producer -

Chris / Lead Artist

"I’m happy to say that our programmers are looking into a bug which was preventing us from creating better looking 3D camo so with any luck, I’ll be able to show you some in-game pictures of what we came up with in the next couple of weeks.

Planned is to include wearable active camo, and some which you can craft onto your long rifle. I was pleased to see the overwhelmingly positive response received from the first pics of the hermit zombie in last week’s report. We have devised a scheme to create a set of zombie ‘dolls’ which are skinned already and will allow us to rapidly iterate new zombie types by ‘dressing the dolls’ with new or existing survivor clothing models and baking them to a new texture.

Work continues on vehicle parts, new survivor clothing models, and the new weapon models (Derringer, AUG, AKS74U). The release of the MP133 and Repeater were held up pending creation of sounds as, rightly so, the new door sounds superseded weapon sounds in priority.”

Standup Notes for the week of 15 Sept 14

(Note: Standup notes are not a change log - they are a quick high level look at tasks the teams worked on throughout this week)

    Art

      Prototyping procedural color changing for weapons
      Polishing bush rag and 3D camo for weapons
      Rangefinder Optic view
      New fishing related items
      Plants for horticulture
      Craftable vest and coat
      3/4 length women’s pants
      Various car parts
      Medical Scrubs
      Steyr AUG
      Zombie ‘paper dolls’ for rapid iteration and creation of new zombie types.
      Prison Uniform
      Large military tent
      ​Bugfixing character art and environment models

    Animation

      Player animation graph bugfixing
      Zombie mocap processing
      Unarmed player sprint 
      Lowered one handed Pistol Animations
      Zombie Animations
      Player Pistol Animations

    Design

      Bugfixing
      Configs and scripts for new items (lockpicks, rangefinder)
      Configs and scripts for hermit zombie
      Configs and scripts for MP133, Repeater
      Weather impact on player and carried items
      Vehicles and their parts
      Horticulture
      Barricading
      Animal and zombie AI
      Advanced melee combat string table

    Programming

      Inventory fixes
      Security on player location updates
      Doors locking and destroying
      Zombie phantom sounds
      Performance issues
      Unintentional weapon switching
      Broken door states in navmesh
      Improved persistence saving
      Diagnostics for debugging
 
 

 

 


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