Brian Fargo and John Alvarado from the inXile crew have penned another update for Wasteland 2's development. A new southwestern-sounding music sample from Mark Morgan, a rundown on the current state of development (including the technical challenges met so far), and the team's promise to communicate more with backers (and non-backers) from now on make up the bulk of this update.
Here's a snip:
As we weigh different approaches to a challenge, we attempt to gaze into the future and discern how the consequences of different decisions will play out with respect to design requirements (known and potential), content pipeline, run-time performance, and development time/cost. Fortunately, our engineering team has decades of experience over dozens of successful projects that help us make most of these decisions with confidence. So far we have made engineering strides on the following systems:
· World Map System
· Movement and Turn-Based Combat System
· Saved Game System
· Character Animation System
· Inventory system
· World State Tracking system
· Story Scripting System
· Localization System
We now have a player-controlled Ranger character moving with animation in a game-level and interacting with NPCs, triggering conversations and changing world states that affect future interactions. This is where we wanted to be at this time and we are right on schedule. Brian stressed to the engineering team the importance of having this ready by the time the writers are finishing up their level designs and story so we can begin implementing, testing and iterating. That priority and the desired iteration process informed some important engineering decisions.
At first glance it made sense to reuse the Bard’s Tale system, but one major difference is that The Bard’s Tale dialog was all voiced by actors. That meant all the dialogue and story was going to be fixed very early on in order to record the audio in voice acting sessions. There would not be much iterating on story/dialogue in The Bard’s Tale. The exact opposite is true for Wasteland 2 as there will be a light amount of voice acting in order to give us the freedom during development to modify, extend, and polish the dialogue and story right up to the very end!