• Freejam Chris

The Workshop Enviornment - Dev Blog #23

Updated: Apr 14, 2021

Over the last week, we’ve been talking about lighting, reflections and how you can change the material of various shapes as well as a look at the bevel rendering technology in action.

Each of these posts revealed a specific environment which we are calling The Workshop!

What is the workshop?!

The workshop is your vehicle building area. Not only does the workshop help you understand the size constraints of building, but we also feel it’s just a nice environment to be in when building. We are planning to have workshops of various sizes and also of differing designs so you can select an environment that suits your building requirements and visual preferences.

Vehicle building can only be done while in the workshop, similar to how the garages worked in Robocraft. However, there are some additional layers of freedom, for example in Robocraft once you built a machine you would have to quit the garage area, then select test, wait for the environment to load, test your vehicle, then if you wanted to iterate you would need to quit the test area and load up the garage again. In Techblox we are planning to make the transition between building and testing really fast!

We want to pre-calculate things like aerodynamics, structural integrity, damage and destruction etc. Doing this while the simulation is running could present some issues. So a separate area specifically to build vehicles and then running the calculations at the start when loading into a game mode would make the game feel smoother and allow us to create more realistic simulations of these features.

What if my machine breaks during simulation?

If you’ve loaded up the simulation and your machine gets broken, destroyed or tips over, players will be able to auto re-assemble the machine. Of course, this is dependent on the rules for the game mode!

Competitive Game Mode Building

In competitive games we will be using the workshop build area as a definable space from which to spawn vehicles at the start of a match. This means that players don’t need to line up their vehicle into a particular area to initiate the game, the game maker would have just set the area where each player will start. Additionally, the workshop can be used to create limits and rules for various game modes, for example size, cost and power).

Pre built machines

You’ll be able to spawn in pre built machines via blueprints so if you want to get straight into a competitive game without building, you can! Some game modes may even force this as an option so that the game can start quickly. Additionally depending on the game mode you could even spawn in more than one machine!

Building with other players

We anticipate that players who build together on private or locally hosted servers will be able to individually? jump into their own workshop and make alterations and then respawn their own creations without having to stop and restart the whole simulation for everybody. This means different players can test and iterate whenever they want without affecting each other.

Unlike many other vehicle building games, we intend to let you build and test vehicles together with your friends (and perhaps even compete together with these vehicles). This feature is quite a long way away but we think building together is really important and whilst the workshop initially sounds like a solitary experience, we want to assure you that we are looking at how we can implement multiplayer for co op building. Game And World Editing

Finally we wanted to share a little bit of information on what this means regarding the game and world creation. You can’t fit an entire world into the constraints of a workshop, so game editing will be a separate mode where the entire world is editable. This includes the landscape, props, machine blocks, UI and logic. Those who make their own game mode will also be able to select the workshop that is used for their game as well as the build rules and limits.

There is a lot of work to do to fully realise the above and our first playable build will not include many of the co-op and competitive elements within this dev log.

A playable Pre-Pre-Pre-Pre-Pre-Alpha is now available! Make sure to visit our home page at http://www.techblox.com/ to sign up to play it!

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