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The latest post-funding update for InXile's Wasteland 3 talks about the algorithms that allow them to create realistic-looking snow. And if that's not something that strikes your fancy, there's also an extensive section describing one of the game's more eerie locations – the Stanley Hotel. Here are a couple of paragraphs:
As we go deeper into pre-production and the Colorado wasteland continues to take shape, we want to keep showing you some of the unique areas our writers and level designers are developing. Below, we have a few (spoiler-free!) details on the Stanley Hotel, a Colorado locale that inspired Stephen King's The Shining as well as our own writer, Colin McComb. He's been working with the rest of the team on the design of the zone, and we're ready to share how it fits into Wasteland 3. Additionally, we have a new concept render from the Bischoff brothers. We continue to use these pieces to flesh out our art direction, so we're excited to share them with you.
Speaking of art, let me briefly touch on some of the progress our team has been making in that department. We've mentioned in the previous updates that a huge focus for us during preproduction is prototyping our systems and engineering needs. Art has similarly been hard at work on figuring out Wasteland 3's aesthetics and pipelines, and our technical artist, Joey Betz, has also been developing tools and algorithms for snow.
For example, Joey has been working on slope based algorithms, which basically tells the engine to take our snow materials and only "paint" them on the top of objects (like cars, roofs, etc.), thin out based on the steepness of the slope they're on, and not appear at all on the bottom. He has also implemented a nice wetness algorithm, which works out melting snow on different surfaces. These subtle tech solutions are huge strides for us, as they allow our artists and level designers to do a great deal more with the many snow-heavy areas we are creating.
Hey, Rangers - Colin here to talk about the Stanley Hotel.
In the mountains northwest of Denver stands a grand but somewhat weathered hotel, a remnant from simpler, more peaceful times.
When the bombs fell in 1998, the hotel guests watched mushroom clouds rise over the mountains and listened to the world end over the radio. They talked long into the night about what the future held. Then, over the next few days, they had final, sumptuous meals before wandering into the surrounding forest to hang themselves. Only the caretakers remained - employees, at first, and then people seduced by the idea that they could bring back a certain elegance to the world.
As the world devolved into savagery, stories of this relatively peaceful end spread through Colorado. The Stanley became a popular destination for suicidal pilgrims who came to the hotel for a joyful final repast before joining the frozen corpses hanging in the forest.
Those corpses instill superstitious fear in the wild, inbred clans in the surrounding mountains, as well as a certain unease in neighboring settlements. Rumor has it that the Stanley is haunted - those who spend too much time here swear that they hear the whispering voices of the unquiet dead. The caretakers of the Stanley don’t mind. They are people of quiet faith and firm belief in doing the right thing by their guests, and they welcome anyone who comes to their doors.