Fortress Occident Developer Blog

Comments

WHEELCHAIR COMPANION?

What you can see here are the capeside apartments, Rue de Saint-Gislaine 33A to be precise. The pier below has my favourite piece of urban romanticism from the game – the plaque reads: “Docking reserved for residents of: Rue de Saint-Gislaine 33A.” Simple technical worldbuilding.

Revachol’s waterfront and the surrounding islands of Ozonne and Archipelagos have civilian boat traffic. Modern Revachol – a “gossamer state”, an occupied territory where only international and property law is enforced – has developed a rich culture of waterways. People drive boats like they drive bicycles. Well, rich people do. Poor people can’t afford boats.

That’s just the facts of life, sunshine.

Another word on the screenshot – it shows off our antecentennial architecture style. Havana-inspired stuff from before the turn of the century. It’s pretty bombed out now, war torn and without renovation for 40 years. We started work on the style before Dishonored 2’s campaign started, so the similarities are coincidental, stemming from common inspiration I guess. Also, we have wildly varying architectural styles in Revachol, the antecentennial is just one of them.

Other than the disturbing lack of spumes and particle effects – the “water tech” is half finished – we’re pretty happy with this one.

A word on the HUD (heads-up display) maybe? It’s still very much a work in progress. But this is the first iteration we’re not embarrassed to show. On the portraits, the red bars are Endurance and the blue bars are Volition.

About those portraits – the third one in line is the one I wanted to talk about: Lena, the cryptozoologist’s wife. She’s into cryptids, the fabled hidden animals. And the whole world in general, not only the hidden part of it. If you take a closer look at the three characters standing underneath the red paint, you’ll see that one of them is in a wheelchair. That one would be Lena.

Since we have a modern setting, we can have people in wheelchairs. Ypa! This one is a fancy, gas powered, electric motor driven wheelchair. (The wheelchair pushing animation would be too much of a hassle, plus the gas powered engine has a nice sound to it.) So we’re thinking – what if we had a wheelchair companion? We like Lena, she’s turning out nice. She’s presented us with an interesting thought experiment. How would Lena as a squadmate work?

Currently – not so well. A gossamer state does not lay wheelchair ramps over the ruins of its monarchist past. Traversing the map becomes an instant problem. We had a look at Martinaise proper and most of it is already barricaded with those stairs that isometric level design loves so much. The rest has … navmesh problems. So we’re currently thinking of making Lena into a temporary companion for an atmospheric stroll kind of side-quest. Prototype it. Then maybe expand it into a more fleshed out thing in the future? Those navigational restrictions have some interesting gameplay and exploration possibilities …

Anyway, these are just thoughts. It’s not guaranteed we’ll get her in there at all. It would need to be a smooth experience. There are a lot of crazy what-if’s that keep it on “Maybe?” list as of now. Just wanted to clear that up so y’all don’t expect her as a squadmate and then get angry when the gossamer state’s “who-gives-a-fuck” social policy cuts her navmesh.

comments powered by Disqus