Dev Blog: Lighting Fires

Dev Blog: Lighting Fires

Since entering into production for Quench, we’ve been building out all of the gameplay by making the world much more dynamic and complex than our prototype ever was. Not only can you use your rain power to create water and bring the map to life, but wind is able to shift sands to uncover hidden objects, and lightning is able to start fires that can quickly become uncontrollable under the wrong circumstances.

Many of these features are brand new and still very programmer-art-iffic. We have a Grand Plan™ to soon move all of these systems rendering into 3D with awesome particle effects, but as of this moment everything is a black-and-white demonstration of data flowing through the map that we use to help us debug. Don’t let that scare you though. We just want to give an insider’s look at how we get our work done before we have assets ready to see the final product in all of its shimmering polygonal glory.

Until then, we’d love for you to take a look at a couple of short videos about fire and how it behaves, and a short discussion of some of the tools we’re using to help us design the behaviour of our environment even with so few assets to render what’s going on.

Only YOU Can Prevent Forest Fires

In this video, Jeff shows off the environment simulation with regards to fire and spread of heat in a level, including how fire reacts with water (rain, surface and groundwater), movement of fire with wind, and production of ash. Currently the simulation is not associated with 3D assets or particle effects, so we use debugging tools to visualize these elements in black and white.

Tools Spotlight: Map Modes

In this video, James describes some of the map modes we use in our level editor to visualize aspects of the Quench simulation, including environmental variables such as groundwater, and optimization variables such as update speed per page of hex geometry in the scene. (This is useful when you want to increase performance by only updating what the camera is currently looking at!)

Thanks for watching!

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